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04-27-2013, 07:57 AM   #1
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New DA 60-250mm, is variable zoom friction a problem?

I just received my new DA* 60-250mm f/4 yesterday, and the zoom has significantly higher friction or resistance starting at 135mm and out to 200mm. I also have a 50-135mm, and it has smooth consistent zoom throughout.

Is this normal or should I return the lens and get a new copy? I'm in Chicago and I'm not aware of a local retailer where I could go handle other copies, so appreciate your advice.

Thanks!

04-27-2013, 08:51 AM   #2
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I think the difference in feel is a result of the "extending" lens 60-250 vs the internal zoom of the 50-135.
04-27-2013, 09:17 AM   #3
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Mine is smooth and even all the way from 60 to beyond 200, after which the zoom resistence lessens very slightly to 250. But zooming from 60 to 250 is very smooth and requires no extra effort between 135 and 200. It's been like that since I bought it new. Without a hands-on comparision I can't say for sure, but your's doesn't seem right.
04-27-2013, 09:57 AM   #4
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Thanks Franky and Gray. I think I'll ask for a replacement. After handling the lens a bit more, it seem the high friction area is around 135mm. It's not terribly uncomfortable, but for the price I'd like to know it's top notch.

04-27-2013, 10:35 AM   #5
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I read an almost exactly similar thread a while ago and it mentioned different friction too. I bet you can find if you search to read all the answers.
04-27-2013, 11:37 AM   #6
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I've had mine for four years now and it still exhibits a slight tightening of the zoom friction in certain spots. Never had any issues whatsoever with the lens though, so I wouldn't worry about it.

I just checked it out and when zooming from 60-250 it tightens around 125/130 and stays tighter until about 180. When zooming from 250-60 it tightens around 135 and stays tighter until about 90.

If the images are ok then I see no reason to return it. Mine has worked flawlessly for four years.
04-27-2013, 02:38 PM   #7
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I took an 18-55 mark 1 apart once (yes, for fun) and it became clear why many zooms have this characteristic. My 16-50 does it, too.

The "final drive ratio" for many zoom lenses is variable. That's why it becomes harder to adjust once certain focal lengths are reached.

Yours could still be defective. Hard to tell without having it in my own hands.

And no, I couldn't reassemble the 18-55. Lenses are equivalent to Swiss watches. Not recommended!!!
04-27-2013, 03:30 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by kcmadr Quote
I've had mine for four years now and it still exhibits a slight tightening of the zoom friction in certain spots. Never had any issues whatsoever with the lens though, so I wouldn't worry about it.

I just checked it out and when zooming from 60-250 it tightens around 125/130 and stays tighter until about 180. When zooming from 250-60 it tightens around 135 and stays tighter until about 90.

If the images are ok then I see no reason to return it. Mine has worked flawlessly for four years.
Mine performs exactly like yours kcmadr. Had it for over a year and is used almost daily.

You can't compare the 50-135 to the 60-250 as the 50-135 is an internal zoom where the 60-250 is not. Also, if it was looser, then you would be complaining about zoom creep which the 60-250 does not have.

04-27-2013, 04:03 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tom1970 Quote
I just received my new DA* 60-250mm f/4 yesterday, and the zoom has significantly higher friction or resistance starting at 135mm and out to 200mm. I also have a 50-135mm, and it has smooth consistent zoom throughout.

Is this normal or should I return the lens and get a new copy? I'm in Chicago and I'm not aware of a local retailer where I could go handle other copies, so appreciate your advice.

Thanks!
Mine was the same as was one I tried in a shop.. this appears to be normal for this lens.
04-27-2013, 04:04 PM   #10
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Not defective. From the Photozone review:
QuoteQuote:
The focus ring operates very smooth and slightly dampened. The zoom ring has a tiny bit of a variable friction along the range but it's still very well implemented.
I found the same thing with the 16-50. I suspect that it may have something to do with the sealing.
04-27-2013, 05:28 PM   #11
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I think most lenses that protrude much when zooming or focusing exhibits this behavior. there is so much mass moving around and the elements moves differently depending on the focal length.
04-27-2013, 08:50 PM   #12
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Thanks all for the additional input. I'm so in love with my primes (15mm, 35mm, 55mm), and spoiled by the smooth 50-135mm, that anything slightly out of the ordinary causes some concern. I picked up this new 60-250mm so I can have some extra reach for photographing a couple of boat racing events this year (one river jet boat race and one H1 hydroplane race). Thought about getting the 300mm, but figured I'd regret not having the zoom when the action gets close. I guess I'll hold onto this copy...pretty glad to have picked up the 35% discount on Amazon this week!

If anyone has a 60-250mm that is consistent resistance throughout the range, please let me know and I'll have a new one shipped. If not, I'll just learn to be happy with the mechanics of a zoom and enjoy the other excellent characteristics that so many love about this lens.
04-28-2013, 01:30 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by kcmadr Quote
I just checked it out and when zooming from 60-250 it tightens around 125/130 and stays tighter until about 180. When zooming from 250-60 it tightens around 135 and stays tighter until about 90.
I have used one for thousands of shots, it behaves exactly like your described.
04-28-2013, 07:01 PM   #14
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If you don't like it send me a PM and I'll take it!
05-06-2013, 04:09 PM   #15
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Thanks all for keeping me and this lens together. Even shooting handheld just before dusk I found a few reasons to be convinced this lens will be fun to have around!
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