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Nikon 18-70 f/3.5-4.5G AFS DX

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51 133766 Feb 10, 2011
Recommended By Average Price
88% of reviewers $237.08
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
7.50
8.63
7.9
DX-18-70_L

Specifications:

AF-S DX 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G

A convenient standard zoom lens with high quality optics, high zoom ratio and good cost performance for use with Nikon DX Format Digital SLRs. The ample 18-70mm zoom range is equivalent to a 27-105mm lens in 35mm format offering maximum versatility to accommodate tight portraits to expansive landscapes. Optical performance is augmented through the incorporation of 3 ED glass elements and 1 composite aspherical lens that together provide appropriate compensation for aberrations. And through the adoption of an SWM (Silent Wave Motor), the AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G IF-ED enables swift, silent AF (Auto Focus) performance with the AF systems of Nikon Digital SLR's.

1. Popular zoom range coverage from 18mm to 70mm (35mm equivalent: 27-105mm)
2. Exceptionally high optical performance designed specifically for use with Nikon digital SLR sensors
3. Three ED glass elements minimise chromatic aberration with higher resolution and superior contrast
4. Nikon exclusive SWM (Silent Wave Motor) for whisper quiet and fast Autofocus.
5. Outstanding cost performance

AF-S DX 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G Main Specifications

Lens Construction: Elements / Groups 15 (3 D)/13
Closest Marked Focusing Distance [m] 0.38
Filter Attachment Size [mm] 67
Dimensions: Dia x Length (extension from lens mount), [mm] 73 x 75.5
Weight [g] 420








 


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piotrek636
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Registered: Feb 10, 2011
Location: Canada
Posts: 0
Review Date: Feb 10, 2011 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $200.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: good value for the going price
Cons:
not as sharp

I am quite disappointed with the softness of this lens. I owned 3 of these by now. Must be a copy variation as the 2nd one I owned was a little sharper of all 3, but still not as sharp as 18-105VR or even 18-55.
All of the 18-70's I owned had a slightly wobbly end when at 70mm (I hear same complains from other 18-70 users). That was quite annoying as the lens has a real SWM motor, metal mount and should be a better build.
Other than sharpness I really have no major complains about this lens. The AF ring really works great for fine tuning.


Feb 10, 2011
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RolfJ
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Registered: Mar 12, 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 359
Review Date: Jun 22, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp throughout the range, compact, excellent all around lens.
Cons:
It's slow but what can you expect for this kind of money?

I received this lens when I purchased my D70 years ago. It has become a workhorse for me. I now own a D90 and still this damn thing ends up on it most of the time. This is despite three primes and three zoom. For a bargain, you won’t do much better than this.

Jun 22, 2010
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glass works
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Registered: Jun 11, 2010
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 13, 2010 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Cheap, quiet and quick focussing, relatively well made, good zoom range for every day use
Cons:
My copy seems to be a dud, weird distortion, images in the mid ground can look soft, lots of CA on one side?

I appear to have a dud copy. Interested to hear if others have had the similar problem.

Its sharpness tends to be variable depending on distance. Weird distortion that cannot be completely eradicated in NX2. My copy seems to have lots of CA on the left hand side?

Focussing ring provides little feel when in manual mode

Ok for general snap shots but would not recommend it for critical use.

the worst lens in my collection by far


Jun 13, 2010
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emaphoto
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Registered: Aug 6, 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Sep 30, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $180.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Price, quality, silent AF, sharpness (stopped down f/5.6)
Cons:
Slow variable aperture

For the price I paid this lens is performing very well. I bought this lens as a temporary solution to a dilemma (won't need to go into that). I have fund it to be responsive and sharp enough for the general use I put it through.

My particular copy does not vignette or have sharpness problems as noted in some previous reviews...I guess it's the luck of the draw.

Only downside for me is speed (f3.5-4.5), but at such a good price it's not so bad. For speed there are primes:)




Sep 30, 2009
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like_this
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Registered: Jun 3, 2009
Location: Germany
Posts: 94
Review Date: Jun 4, 2009 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 5 

 
Pros: First affordable DX-standard-zoom-lens.
Cons:
Not really sharp at large apertures. Build-quality, distortion, vignetting.

I bought my 2004 for use at the D1. Since that time I used the 18-70mm at a D1, D70, D200 and D2Hs.

Only at the D70 my 18-70 was jolly good. At the other cameras I was not satisfied at all.

I sold it and bought the 18-135mm.


Jun 4, 2009
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LMT1972
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Registered: Oct 26, 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 744
Review Date: Feb 22, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Light, great IQ, Nice focal range for me, price
Cons:
Build quality, ocassional vignetting @ 18mm

Got this as the 'kit' lense with my D70s. Don't know why people continually refer to this as a "kit" because it can certainly hold it's own against much more expensive glass.

The 18-70 is pretty sharp when stopped down a little but certainly useable wide open. Focus is snappy enough and I always found it pretty accurate on the D70s. Ocassionally I would get some vignetting at 18mm but nothing signficant that could not be corrected.

The main difference in IQ between this and the 50mm 1.8 or 24-70 is micro-contrast and better colour rendition of the latter. But if you can nail the focus and expsoure, this lens really does produce very nice images.

Build quality is as you would expect for a lense in this price range but is still reasonable. I actually dropped mine a couple times (once on bitumen) with the body attached and both times it broke the lense hood but the lense was fine.

If you don't need fast glass or you just won't a nice, cheap walk around zoom with consistent IQ right through the focal range, then you should consider this excellent little lens.


Feb 22, 2009
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Daan B
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Registered: Aug 15, 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 7591
Review Date: Feb 21, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: See below
Cons:
See below

I got my 1st copy of this lens with my D70 as a kit lens. After I sold my D70's, I used it on my D200 with great pleasure. Have been using Canon since then, but recently bought a D90 as a travel/vacation cam. I tried the 16-85VR. I liked the IQ, but it had nasty focus issues. Got me a 2nd copy (used) of the 18-70mm to replace it. No regrets here. Like my 1st 18-70mm this is an excellent lens for its intended purpose.

Sharpness is already very good wide open across the entire focal range. It is best stopped down to f/5.6-f/8. Corner sharpness is very good as well. Contrast and colors are excellent. CA's are almost non existent. This lens takes crispy pictures Wink

Distortion at 18mm is the heavy barrel type. PS can't correct it entirely because of it's wave characteristics. No big deal for me. I am not planning to shoot architecture with it. From 24mm to 70mm distortion is typical for standard zoom lenses: decent/OK. Another "negative" could be the vignetting wide open. Although this is easily to correct in PP.

AF is fast, silent and accurate on my D90. IIRC it was the same on my D70's and D200.

Built quality is only so so. After time/usage the inner lens barrel loosens up considerebly. This doesn't affect performance though. It just feels... well... fragile. For travel it has a nice size and weight. It balances great on my D90.

But all the "negatives" aside... I used to own a AF-S 28-70 2.8... You would be hard pressed to see any difference between this "beast" and the 18-70mm at comparable apertures/focal lengths. What I am trying to say is, this lens offers the most bang for the buck I have ever seen in a "consumer" lens. Highly recommended!


Feb 21, 2009
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Jack White
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Registered: Nov 12, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 867
Review Date: Oct 2, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $170.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Image quality, focus speed, perfect size for travel
Cons:
Zoom ring is covered when hood reversed

Skeptic turned believer

Oct 2, 2008
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MailmanNZ
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Registered: Sep 13, 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 164
Review Date: Jul 1, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Good build, price, size and weight.
Cons:
None that I can think of for this price

Absolutely loving this lense! Especially as its replacing my kit lense that is now a number of years old, so this lense is easily a step up, and for not too much money as well!

Ive taken some absolutely stunning photos with this lense, really loving 18mm! Havent really noticed any vignetting, but there you go.



Jul 1, 2008
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Ceko
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Registered: May 5, 2008
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 5, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Very good price/quality, nice reach, great sharpness and contrast.
Cons:
Construction quality could be better, but that would probably result in a higher price.

This is actually one of my last bought lenses. I'm very glad I bought it though since I didn't have a standard zoom yet! I paid a very reasonable price and the quality of the pictures this lens produces astounds me time and again. It's an ideal lens to take with you on holidays, the reach is very versatile. It didn't leave my D50 anyway.

May 5, 2008
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gugs
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Registered: Apr 16, 2005
Location: Belgium
Posts: 7537
Review Date: Feb 16, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Small and light package, reasonable build and excellent picture quality, fast focus
Cons:
not a 2.8 lens

excellent kit lens, probably the best ever. Delivers excellent pictures many people won't be able to distinguish from pro lenses. A cheap and light lens most people should have on a DX format camera. I don't use the lens anymore because I replaced it by the 18-200VR, a much more versatile package even if picture quality is not on par with the 18-70, but that's a personal opinion.

Highly recommended... the lens just delivers excellent pictures.


Feb 16, 2008
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gohunter
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Registered: Jun 27, 2004
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 4
Review Date: Jan 9, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp, great value for money. Good zoom range. Good build quality.
Cons:
Not as fast as an f2.8 - but who can complain at this price! Slight vignetting at the 18mm end when wideopen, but nothing serious.

I bought this with my Fuji S5 Pro to use for semi pro work, such as weddings, after discussing the option of the 17-55mm f2.8 with the sales guy in Calumet. He told me that I would be very happy with the 18-70 and he was not wrong! I also bought the 50mm f1.8 D lens to use for portraits and low light shots and this complements the 18-70 very well indeed.

This lens is far better than the average kit lens even though it was initially introduced as one. It is nice and sharp, good quality build with a good build quality to weight ratio, not too heavy, not too light although I do admit preferring heavier lenses to light ones.

I am very impressed by the performance and as someone else said here, this is a gem of a lens for the money. Slight vignetting at 18mm wide open, but nothing that cannot be fixed easily with Photoshop.


Jan 9, 2008
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PJ Fish
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Registered: Nov 24, 2006
Location: Denmark
Posts: 18
Review Date: Nov 19, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Weather sealed Nikkor for less than 250 box?!! and the files you get is still sharp and make wonders..are you crazy!?? this is Nikons best kept secret and jewel.but ONLY if you get a good sharp sample.
Cons:
..hm QC is more or less..i dont no..maybe my first sample was a lemon..but the next one is..outstanding.. it shold have been an F4 all the way like Canons 17-40 !

For what you get this is truely a very good Nikkor and it is so fantastic that this lens have wheater sealing inside,so in fact you can pair it up with a Nikon D300 and get super splash proof pro gear for less money..

This Nikkor 18-70 is a very good lens on par with the 17-55 f2,8 regarding optical quality and i think its a gem.


Nov 19, 2007
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D LEGAKIS
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Registered: Nov 11, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: Nov 15, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Light, compact, good focal length range, bargain purchase for well above average performance.
Cons:
For the price, nothing serious to complain about, apart from the rings which are the other way around.

I bought this lens after using a supposedly top of the range 17-55 f2.8 for three years.

Ok, it is made of plastic and the rings are the other way around compared to the majority of Nikon lenses, but that sums it up for me.

It focuses fine, it's as sharp as the one mentioned above and it exposes fine.

If you can live with a lens that is 2/3 of a stop under on 18mm and 1 and 1/3 stops under on 70mm then this is the lens for you. No issues on wide open either. Ok, a bit of vignetting maybe, at least it focuses and exposes correctly.

Try a higher ISO setting or a monopod/tripod and a bit computer manipulation and the result will be fine.

Spend six times as much for a premium 17-55mm f2.8 and you'll regret it.


Nov 15, 2007
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Benjamin Bergm
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Registered: Sep 13, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Nov 14, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $125.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Great beginner lens, quite sharp, great bokeh, fast focus, cheap cheap cheap!
Cons:
Vignetting problems, build quality, limited usefulness past 50mm.

Let me preface this by saying I enjoy using this lens, it takes great shots in most cases, and it's amazing for the price.

That said, it's got a few significant drawbacks. The most obvious problem is that at 70mm, this is an f/4.5 lens. It's not a huge problem, but if you shoot in low light with any frequency (as I tend to at these focal lengths...) it gets to be frustrating.

Next complaint: with DX lenses comes DX vignetting it seems. Okay, that's probably an unfair generalization, but I have significant problems on the wide end with this lens. Once in a long while, I see a bit of purple fringing as well. And the build quality is... well... this is the worst of the plastic lenses I've tried from Nikon. But as with most drawbacks on this lens: at this price, I'm not going to bitch very loud about it.

That said, if you're looking for top quality glass, you're not looking at this lens anyway. All those old D70 owners looking to upgrade are willing to part with their kit lens for well under $200. At that price, you really can't go wrong. I'm not a huge fan of the effective 27-105 range, but it does come in useful once in a while.

For the most part, I use this as an 18-35mm, and pop on a Nikon Prime 50mm f/1.8 for portraits. The two lenses together won't cost you much more than $250 (Less if you're careful) and they provide a fantastic combination for wide angle and portrait length focal ranges. Once in a while I use the 35-70mm length on this lens, but rarely. At that range, I'm usually either grabbing the 50mm prime or using the fantastic 70-300 f/4.5-5.6 lens.

The point is... despite the drawbacks, this lens is very good for the money, and doesn't show any significant deviations from the 18-35 and 18-55 lenses that you might pick instead. The sharpness is there, it's cheaper, has a little extra length for that "once in a while" moment when you wish you could get a bit closer. If you're just starting out, this is the lens to pick.


Nov 14, 2007
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Teru Kage
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Registered: Oct 29, 2007
Location: China
Posts: 23
Review Date: Nov 7, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Small, light, fast, focal range better than most kit lenses
Cons:
On the soft side wide open. The Nikkor 18-200mm renders this lens obsolete (at extra $$$, of course)_

As far as kit lenses go, the 18-70mm is safisfyingly above average. The 27-105mm range (larger than most kit lenses) is good for standard walk arounds and the AF-S (which is true AF-S with manual override) is fast and accurate.

It does tend to go soft at wide open and vignette at 18mm (clears up after stepping down to f/5.6), but for a kit lens, you shouldn't be expecting pro-glass quality.

I used my copy for 2 years before selling it. I upgraded to the 18-200mm VR, which naturally outperforms its little brother (it should, considering the huge price difference).

Some samples for your reference.

Different focal lengths from the same scene:

18mm
http://www.fotop.net/teruphoto/Nam_Sang_Wai/Nam_Sang_Wai_1957

32mm
http://www.fotop.net/teruphoto/Nam_Sang_Wai/Nam_Sang_Wai_2040

70mm
http://www.fotop.net/teruphoto/Nam_Sang_Wai/Nam_Sang_Wai_2030

Night time shot, tripod
http://www.fotop.net/teruphoto/Architecture/CS_Night_3222


Nov 7, 2007
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Nikon 18-70 f/3.5-4.5G AFS DX

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
51 133766 Feb 10, 2011
Recommended By Average Price
88% of reviewers $237.08
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
7.50
8.63
7.9
DX-18-70_L


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