Canon EF-M 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM lens review: good performance, bargain price

By Kevin Carter - Thursday August 29 2013

Lens Review
Introduction | Canon EF-M 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM lens performance | Canon EF-M 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM vs. Canon EF-S 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM mounted on EOS 100D | Canon EF-M 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM vs. Competition | Conclusion

Canon EF-M 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM vs. Sony E 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 vs. Olympus M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-50mm f3.5-6.3 EZ

When we compare the EF-M model to rival offerings, the optical performance is on a par with the best kit lens from Sony for NEX series cameras. Even though the E 16-50mm f3.5-5.6 offers a wider angle of view (it’s the equivalent of a 24-75mm) that compromises optical performance somewhat, bear in mind it’s around $100 more expensive. Although, not a direct comparison based on sensor size, the Canon comfortably outperforms the $499 Olympus 12-50mm f/3.5-5.6 EZ lens, which is bundled with the maker’s high-end OM-D E-M5 model. Although it has other benefits, it’s not a great performer optically (for further comparisons of MFT standard zooms, please follow the link here).

Canon EF-M 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM vs. Nikon 1 NIKKOR VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6

We couldn’t help comparing the Canon lens with the Nikon 1 Nikkor VR 10-30mm (28-80mm equivalent). Ironically, the tiny Nikon 1 system is known for its impressively fast AF (with the Nikon cameras adopting on-chip PDAF). While this lens is also stabilized it’s accessibly priced at $186, and is frequently found as kit lens for the various Nikon 1 bodies. While most aberrations are well controlled it has disappointing sharpness, even when measured on a body with a relatively low pixel count (in this instance the 10Mpix Nikon 1 V1).