Wide-Mid-range Zoom Nikon lens f/2.8 which one is best?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by Giovanni Azua, Mar 1, 2008.

  1. hi,

    I would like to buy a new wide/standard zoon lens with fixed aperture f/2.8
    for all the focal range. The natural choices I have found are:

    (listed under standard zoom)
    1-. AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G ED (new and out of stock nearly everywhere)
    2-. AF-S DX Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8G IF-ED

    Do I want DX? quoted from Nikon website "DX design enables a combination of
    wider angle-of-view with optical characteristics that are optimized for
    Nikon digital SLR camera sensors". Why the newer models do not feature DX
    e.g. the #1 24-70mm?

    I plan to be using this lens on a D200/D300 for:

    - General purpose, just go out and shoot just about anything interesting,
    important it to be super sharp and ability to blur backgrounds, good bokeh,
    - Macro photographing if possible
    - Night photographing e.g. I shot the picture below using the 18-200mm VR at
    18mm focal length and f/3.5, 2s on a tripod. Will I be able to match/surpass
    the quality using choice #1 or #2? is it the #1 24mm start focal length a
    bit prohibitive for making such a shot?
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/462015759/sizes/l/
    - Good balance of low distorsion and wide angle
    - Heavy use in dim light: portraits indoors, discos, car shows indoors etc.

    Maybe #1 is the best choice? what about the lack of DX? #2 focal range is
    kind of limited .. Kenrockwell review mentions distorsion for #2 to be "more
    than he'd expect". I also already have the AF-S DX Nikkor 12-24mm f/4 IF-ED
    so #2 would be a bit too much of an overlap e.g. I already use this wide
    angle for shooting outdoors: landscapes, architecture etc.

    Many thanks in advance.
    Giovanni Azua, Mar 1, 2008
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  2. Giovanni Azua

    Paul Furman Guest

    That description is a bit dated. The main difference is DX covers a
    smaller image circle so it's smaller, lighter, less expensive and
    doesn't work on old film cameras or on the new $5,000 D3 model. If you
    don't think you'd get that camera some day, it probably doesn't make
    sense to get the 24-70. If low light shooting is an important thing for
    you, you might consider getting that camera. You will be able to sell
    the DX lenses for a good price if you decide to go that route.
    24mm f/2.8 won't blur backgrounds unless you are doing closeups. You
    might prefer a faster fixed lens like a manual focus 35mm f/1.4 if you
    want that look at a wide-ish angle. Probably not but something to consider.
    You probably want the 17-55 then. OTOH with a tripod you don't need
    speed and you have a 12-24.
    Paul Furman, Mar 1, 2008
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  3. Giovanni Azua

    BRH Guest

    On a D200/D300 DX or non-DX isn't an issue. Both lenses are excellent,
    so I believe that it comes down to focal length. Although I have the
    17-55 and love it, since you already have the 12-24, the 24-70 may be
    the way to go for you. OTOH, you gain only 15mm on the long end with
    the 24-70 and the price difference is several hundred dollars.....
    BRH, Mar 2, 2008
  4. hi,

    Many thanks for your reply.

    I have read somewhere that this non-DX 24-70mm would be if DX a 16-46mm
    which makes absolutely no sense buying for a D200/D300 that I have. So I
    would not be gaining 15mm on the long end or?

    Anyway, I already decided and bought the 17-55mm which indeed overlaps in
    range with my lighter 12-24mm f/4 but I am after the faster f/stops, namely
    for the Auto Show Geneva next 06.03.2008 here in Switzerland :) I will be

    - Nikon 10.5mm DX Fisheye f/2.8 this shot is from last year:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/452205000/sizes/o/

    - Nikon 70-200mm VR f/2.8 (otherwise I won't make it to the ferraries and
    the lambos :))

    and then this 17-55mm for "serious" close range shots and maybe use the

    I just paid 1200USD to H&B for this 17-55mm including shipping. The 24-70mm
    is out of stock nearly everywhere in USA that ships internationally and here
    in Switzerland it costs truly an arm and a leg +2000USD

    Best regards,
    Giovanni Azua, Mar 2, 2008
  5. hi Paul,

    Many thanks for your reply!

    I just bought the 17-55 I think I will probably manage to get sharper night
    pictures even with tripod will make it to less than 2secs for the same
    picture before. Anyway my immediate need is the Auto show Geneva in 5 days I
    can't get a tripod inside there :) if were possible then it is actually

    Many thanks!

    Best regards,

    PS: I am still curious what is the actual focal range for the non DX 24-70mm
    if mapped to a DX equivalent lens 16-46mm?
    Giovanni Azua, Mar 2, 2008
  6. Giovanni Azua

    Paul Furman Guest

    If you had the 24-70 on a $5k D3, [2.9x]
    that would look like a 16-46 on the D300.

    The 24-70 replaces the 28-70 [2.5x]
    which is like an 18-46

    Before that was the 35-70 [2x]
    which is like a 23-46

    A full frame equiv. 25-82
    would match your 17-55 [3.2x]

    non-DX is called FX in nikon-speak
    Paul Furman, Mar 2, 2008
  7. Because you can use the 24-70mm lens on a D3 or a film body without losing
    the corners.
    Andrew Koenig, Mar 2, 2008
  8. Giovanni Azua

    Chris Savage Guest

    Whatever image circle the lens has its focal length will not change. The
    24-70 mm would still be 24-70 mm.
    Chris Savage, Mar 2, 2008
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