A good walking arround Zoom for Nikon

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by Steven Green, May 25, 2008.

  1. Steven Green

    ASAAR Guest

    At 24mm (36mm equiv.) it doesn't give a wide enough angle for many
    photographers. B&H (and presumably other camera shops) is offering
    Nikon's $150 "instant savings" for their recent 75-300VR lens if
    purchased with a D3 or D300. By itself it's not a "walking around"
    lens, but it's a pretty good lens with the latest VR implementation,
    and not a heavy beast like some of Nikon's fixed aperture zooms.
    You could add the very inexpensive and lightweight 18-55mm DX kit
    lens to take care of the wide angle range. It costs so little that
    it shouldn't matter much that it won't be suitable for an FX camera
    such as the D3. Or you could splurge a little and get Nikon's
    better 18-70mm lens. The new 16-85mm VR lens is better still and
    could qualify by itself as a good "walking around lens" for some,
    but it's still a DX and twice the price of the 18-70mm version.
    ASAAR, May 26, 2008
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  2. Steven Green

    Steven Green Guest

    Same here, you just don't realize how good you have it until you work in
    the corporate world for a few years. I am having more fun the second time
    around as well.
    Steven Green, May 26, 2008
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  3. Don't buy just by the numbers. The 24-120mm Nikkor VR may
    be rated for FX, but it isn't very good on FX (I tried three...). Not
    very wide on DX (but at the long end, the visible difference is
    minor compared with the above), there is the excellent 24-85mm
    f3.5-4.5 Nikkor, good on both formats even at its widest stops.
    It covers a respectable 35mm equivalent of 36mm to 127.5mm,
    good as a "walking around and hiking" lens, especially given its
    high quality and relatively modest size and price. BTW, you may
    find this Nikkor comparison and rating list interesting --
    David Ruether, May 26, 2008
  4. Much as it pains me, Rita's completely right for once. (As the
    saying goes, even a blind man ...)

    Invest in good glass --- you'll probably upgrade the body in
    a couple of years anyway, but top notch glass stays so, unless
    OK, new versions with (better) IS may appear some year.

    However, do choose a body that works well with you and gives you
    joy to use, lest you not use your gear at all.
    Whew, there must be a lot of nobodies out there.

    Some Sigma lenses seem to compete on price, sacrificing quality
    and/or QA. These should probably be avoided.

    Others fill niches unfilled by Canon, Nikon et al. --- including
    the 300-800mm. Yet others are compete by reducing the feature set
    (a touch slower, no stabilizer) and being vastly cheaper.

    Wolfgang Weisselberg, May 26, 2008
  5. As is any DSLR from this decade.
    (Rita's a very outspoke, oppinioned "Nikon only" person, so take
    zir with a mountain of rock salt when it comes to Canon vs. Nikon.)
    A successor is expected soon(ish) by many people, true ---
    but the 5D is exactly as good as it was when it was newly
    presented to the world.
    Or buy the 5D after the price dropped once the "6D" is out, unless
    you really need something the 6D offers, but the 5D does not.

    But base your choice of Nikon or Canon or something else on:
    - does the glass you need and the glass you want later exist?
    - does the camera fit your hands? (Don't forget to try a
    battery grip!)
    - do the controls, if not "intuitive'[1], work sensible for
    - does the body have all the features you *need* and enough
    of the features you *want*?
    - is it fun to use the camera?
    - do you have any lenses worth keeping for some system?
    Beware that you can get hurt with ebay. Don't do ebay to save a
    mere 10 or 20% --- the risk to get hurt is too high. (This may
    not apply to respectable, well known brick-and-mortar shops'
    ebay offers.) Think about whom you can talk to if you need a
    repair or the lens dies.
    See above: Rita firmly believes only Nikon can make lenses,
    and that swapping bodies after 18 months (even if you swap
    with your buddy for the exactly same model) is the best way
    to handle depreciation.

    Personally, I'd use the body up (I earn my bucks well outside
    photography). If it dies (and repair is not viable), replace it.
    If a new camera comes up with features which you really need (maybe
    every 3-6 generations), use the old one as a backup. After all,
    you know it's quirks by then and can get the best out of it.
    Rita probably is an upgrade junkie.
    The latter really is good on full frame --- oops, sorry, that
    was the IS for Canon, the VR is optimized for DX, and it shows.
    Not by me. I'll rather buy another lens.


    [1] The only intuitive interface is the human breast --- and
    even that isn't: a third of the babies must *learn* it.
    Wolfgang Weisselberg, May 26, 2008
  6. The 70-200 was never meant to be a "landscape" lens. Nobody shoots
    landscapes at 200mm anyway, so this point is moot. Plus, the parroted
    problems you speak of are only noticeable at 195mm and above at f/2.8. If
    the parroted problem really bothers you then shoot at 195mm and wider.

    Rita Berkowitz, May 27, 2008
  7. No, just learned long ago how to maximize my returns.

    Stamping out Internet stupidity one idiot at a time. Never empower the
    idiot, embrace it and stimulate it. For more details go to the Usenet
    Stimulus Project page.

    Rita Berkowitz, May 27, 2008
  8. The 18-70 is the only DX lens that exceeds expectations and is the only one
    that offers pro quality for under $200.

    Stamping out Internet stupidity one idiot at a time. Never empower the
    idiot, embrace it and stimulate it. For more details go to the Usenet
    Stimulus Project page.

    Rita Berkowitz, May 27, 2008
  9. Steven Green

    frederick Guest

    Perhaps the 70-200 was never meant to be a *full-frame* lens.
    It's very soft at the edges at 135mm on Fx, and not very good even at 70mm.
    200mm *is* used for landscape photos, and for other situations where
    edge sharpness is important.
    You don't know what you're talking about.
    frederick, May 27, 2008
  10. Steven Green

    adm Guest

    Apparently your reading comprehension isn't the best.

    You obviously missed this piece:

    Seeing as IMHAO the best "affordable" walk-around Nikon zoom is the
    18-200VR DX right now, and the OP appears happy to trade it on later,
    if and when he goes to a full frame body, my recommendation stands.

    D300 plus 18-200 VR DX. Great combo that will do 95% of what you need
    for 95% of all photographers. Technical Pros and gear snobs not

    For the other 5%, there are plenty of nice Nikkor primes and low-f
    zooms, but they are also much, much more expensive, have less range and
    are probably not justified unless you make your living from your gear,
    have lots of disposable cash or have an overriding technical need for a
    particular lens.

    BTW, my next purchase will probably be the replacement for the current
    70-200 f2.8 VR to go with my 50mm f1.4, 85mm f1.8 and old 24-105
    f2.8-??, but for now, for MY use, the 18-200 VR DX is the nicest and
    most used "walkaround" zoom I have, and is one I am happy to recommend
    to others interested in getting into Nikon DSLRs on a budget of $2-3K
    for body and lens.
    adm, May 27, 2008
  11. <YAWN>

    Another idiot that never touched the lens and is parroting crap he reads on
    the internet like he remotely has a clue. Come back when you actually shot
    with the lens and maybe we can hold an adult discussion.

    Stamping out Internet stupidity one idiot at a time. Never empower the
    idiot, embrace it and stimulate it. For more details go to the Usenet
    Stimulus Project page.

    Rita Berkowitz, May 27, 2008
  12. Steven Green

    frederick Guest

    The "crap" is written by people with credibility - something that you
    clearly lack.
    You should stamp yourself out.
    frederick, May 27, 2008
  13. Yep! The folks you speak of with "credibility" are out there shooting empty
    blue skies and brick walls digging for faults that aren't there or are
    meaningless to the majority of photographers.. The other people out there
    using it for everyday real world shooting aren't doing the whining, in fact
    they are praising it. Oh wait, your credibility is up there in the
    ionosphere since you don't have the 70-200VR and an FX body to shoot with
    and try your theory. You want another Saltine, Poly? LOL! Another idiot
    chokes on his crackers.

    BTW>I'll be doing some landscape shootin with my 500/4 and 2x TC on my D3
    (FX) sensor, Baby! I'll let you know if the corners are a little soft.


    Stamping out Internet stupidity one idiot at a time. Never empower the
    idiot, embrace it and stimulate it. For more details go to the Usenet
    Stimulus Project page.

    Rita Berkowitz, May 27, 2008
  14. Steven Green

    frederick Guest

    The faults *are* there.
    Speak for yourself. Don't be so arrogant that you claim to speak for
    "the majority" - because you don't.
    frederick, May 27, 2008
  15. LOL! Go ahead and take a few snaps with your 70-200VR and D3 and show us
    all these "faults" you speak of. Be a good parrot and I'll give you another
    Who cares about the majority when I got a parroting idiot to stimulate?

    Can you say "Obama" little Poly?

    Stamping out Internet stupidity one idiot at a time. Never empower the
    idiot, embrace it and stimulate it. For more details go to the Usenet
    Stimulus Project page.

    Rita Berkowitz, May 27, 2008
  16. Steven Green

    Bob Guest

    your could always wait for the nikon D400 ? Full frame etc maybe 2 grand
    Meanwhile I'll enjoy my D300 I have a stack of FF lens and soon to buy the
    a Dx lens

    If a FF mid price Nikon comes Out I will buy that till then enjoy.
    Bob, May 27, 2008
  17. Steven Green

    ASAAR Guest

    Is the 18-70 really that good? Maybe I shouldn't have given mine
    to my brother last week?

    On second thought, I had no other option. He needed a lens to go
    with the D50, and since they were so fond of each other, I thought
    it best to not separate those Asian bits of metal and plastic . . .

    I gave him the 'new' D50 and kept my refurbished D50, but it looks
    like I'll have to get the refurb. a newer, younger sibling. Why, I
    already hear you asking? Because I bought Nikon's AH-4 hand strap
    yesterday, and one of the few bodies it doesn't fit is the D50.
    What to do? What to do? Return it? Nope, it's too nice and
    useful. Mill off part of the base plate or add a non-slip shim?
    Nope, because I'd rather keep it and wait to see if it'll fit the
    eagerly awaited D90, or possibly even a D300. If the latter, I'll
    probably need to do some of your hand and arm exercises for a couple
    of months even if I don't get any of Nikon's f/2.8 zooms for it. :)
    ASAAR, May 27, 2008
  18. Steven Green

    Guest Guest

    the nikon hand strap doesn't really fit any recent nikon bodies that
    well. i use a thin rubber washer which keeps the mount plate from
    slipping or twisting. i think it cost fifty cents or something like
    Guest, May 27, 2008
  19. Steven Green

    ASAAR Guest

    That did seem like the simplest, least Rube_Goldberg-ish solution.
    On the plus side, it could save me hundreds or even thousands of
    dollars. On the other hand, my money has a mind of its own, and
    will soon find other ways to try to entice me towards gear
    photographic . . . :)

    Are there any other decent hand straps you're aware of? The only
    thing I can see about the AH-4 that looks like it may cause problems
    would be if it makes it more difficult to use the rear dial or any
    nearby buttons. Are you using one on a D50? The AH-4 doesn't slip
    on my D50, but a ridge on the AH-4's mounting plate keeps it from
    making full contact with the D50's base, and the much greater
    pressure on the D50 from the ridge may lead to future problems.
    ASAAR, May 27, 2008
  20. Steven Green

    Guest Guest

    apparently my money and your money share the same mind...it's a never
    ending outward flow...
    there's a few third party ones that looked promising, but i happened to
    luck out on a used ah-4 that someone sold to my local camera store. i
    tried it on a few different models, including the d50 and d300, and
    it's not ideal for any of them.

    the grip was apparently designed for thinner cameras such as the f4, so
    on recent cameras, it doesn't make full contact and can twist. i tried
    putting a small piece of rubber in the gap but that didn't work that
    well, so i replaced that with a washer underneath and it's almost
    perfect. even with the gap it stays put, but with a lot of use it
    might twist slightly. it's minor.

    the only issue i have is dealing with tripods. since the grip has its
    own tripod socket that's offset from the lens axis, pivoting on a
    tripod is no longer ideal. when i do panoramas, i remove the grip and
    put the quick release plate on the camera, with the grip plate hanging.
    otherwise, the q/r plate is on the grip.

    i was considering one of the third party straps before i lucked out on
    the nikon one. there's two in the lower right corner of this document:

    and another here:

    since they're generic, they might be more flexible in fitting a wider
    variety of cameras but that's just a guess.
    Guest, May 27, 2008
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