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02-18-2012, 06:55 AM   #1
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Question about my 55-200 zoom lens

Hello all

Frequent reader/(very!) infrequent poster here, I have a question about my lens. Once it has been used, it no longer retracts fully. A small bit (about a cm) sticks out, unless you switch on manual focussing in which case you can twist the lens fully back into its body. Does that make sense?

Is the lens broken? Seems to take decent pictures still, but this just annoys me. Is it worth taking back? My camera shop is a 70 mile round trip so any advice from on here would be gratefully received.

Also is the 55-300 mm a decent upgrade? Will I notice an improvement in IQ?

02-18-2012, 07:05 AM - 1 Like   #2
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Lenses are shortest when focused at infinity (unless focus is all internal). I suspect that the autofocus simply leaves the lens at the last focused position. To retract it fully focus on something VERY distant.
dSLRs generally do not retract their lenses automatically when powering off, like most point-and-shoot cameras do.
02-18-2012, 07:13 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by TomB_tx Quote
Lenses are shortest when focused at infinity (unless focus is all internal). I suspect that the autofocus simply leaves the lens at the last focused position. To retract it fully focus on something VERY distant.
dSLRs generally do not retract their lenses automatically when powering off, like most point-and-shoot cameras do.
Thanks for the very prompt response!

I'm pretty sure that a few weeks ago I would twist the large ring (not the focussing one, the zoom bit) and the lens would compact down for storage. Now it seems to leave a little bit sticking out, unless you manually twist the focussing ring. Am I misremembering? Do I not need to worry about the lens? I know its not supposed to act like a P&S camera.

02-18-2012, 07:33 AM   #5
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What's the difference between the Da and Da-L? Is it the plastic mount?


Scrap that - a 10 second google answered my question!
02-18-2012, 01:08 PM   #6
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You can always twist the *zoom* lens to retract the zoom mechanism, but you cannot twist the *focus* ring (well, without forcing it and risking damage to the lens and/or camera) to retract the focus mechanism unless you are in MF mode (or the lens is unmounted). That's because the "L" version of the lens lacks the "quick shift" mechanism that permits turning the focus ring while in AF mode.
02-18-2012, 01:24 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
You can always twist the *zoom* lens to retract the zoom mechanism, but you cannot twist the *focus* ring (well, without forcing it and risking damage to the lens and/or camera) to retract the focus mechanism unless you are in MF mode (or the lens is unmounted). That's because the "L" version of the lens lacks the "quick shift" mechanism that permits turning the focus ring while in AF mode.
That's the bit it doesn't do! When I twist the 'zoom' bit, I get a little bit left hanging out. When I switch to MF, I can fully retract it. Does that mean its broken somehow?
02-18-2012, 02:47 PM   #8
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Like TomB_tx said.
Unless the lens is focused to infinity it will stick out, this is normal for a lens that is not internally focusing type.


Last edited by Ex Finn.; 02-18-2012 at 02:53 PM.
02-19-2012, 04:09 PM - 1 Like   #9
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Read my rsponse again. Twisting the zoom ring fully retracts the *zoom* mechaism, but it doesn't touch the *focus* mechanism at all. Only turning the focus ring will retract the focus mechaism. Two totally seaprate mechanisms. In fact, if turning the zoom ring *were* to change the focus as well, that would be a huge design defect - we often rely on the fact that you can zoomin or out after focusing with not much affect on the focus.

So again. It's perfectly normal, and indeed *necessary*, that turning the zoom ring doesn't change the focus mechanism. Monly turning the focus ring changes the focus mechanism. But as noted, you cannot turn the focus ring on a lens that lacks Quick Shift unless you are in MF mode.

So assuming you have a lens without Quick Shift - like the "L" version of the kit lenses - then what you describe is absolutely normal.
02-20-2012, 02:51 AM   #10
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Thanks everyone for your responses. I've had a camera expert mate look at it, and check the focussing and it is all correct, so I'm worrying about nothing.

It is good for us newbies to know we can post here without being ridiculed for our ignorance!

Many thanks.
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