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Nikon 70-210mm f/4-5.6D AF

70-210
Review Date: May 28, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Cheap, very solid construction, I actually like the push-pull mechanism
Cons:
overrated

Ken Rockwell published a glowing review about the 70-210 on his web site and this is probably one of the reasons why this lens is somewhat overrated, if you ask me. I have the non-D version version which is optically identical to the D-version (which focusses faster).

I am actually happy with my 70-210. It 'feels right' and has a built quality that todays entry-level lenses don't have anymore. I bought a Nikon 70-300G, compared it to my 70-210 and got rid of the 70-300 within a week. The 70-210 was way better throughout its range, especially wide open.

When I compare the 70-210 with the 18-70 at 70 mm however, I think the D70 kit lens is a bit sharper and has better contrast and colour. I did some comparisons with my 180 mm Sigma macro as well and the Sigma is clearly superior. Both the kit lens and Sigma macro come with a nice hood, something that I only started appreciating after noticing the drop in contrast of the 70-210 whenever sunlight hit its filter. Fortunately I found a cheap 1 euro hood that solved that problem.

The 70-210 is an OK-lens if you are searching for a cheap second hand tele that is build well, offers decent performance through its range and will serve you until Nikon finally releases a 70-300 lens with really good optics. It is a fine lens but don't pay a ridiculous 'Rockwell-tax' for it.