Mike, ours is now well worn and scruffy but turns in a great performance. Overall I still have not found a better lens of this type. What I have noticed is that at 18mm, you can go to wide open without worry; at 250mm, you can do the same with caution. But around 50mm-150mm range, where apertures around f/5.6 are wide open, it sometimes proves soft if used that way. Stopping down to f/8 or f/9 makes it hard to fault at any setting.
Here's a couple of Shirley's shots from Split last month, showing the range of the lens well -
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split5-sk.jpg [ 119.74 KiB | Viewed 374 times ]
It's just a great lens for being out and about and very sharp indeed on her Alpha 580.