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Nikon 70-200mm f/4G ED VR AF-S Nikkor

Screen_Shot_2013-11-14_at_11_36_47_AM
Review Date: Apr 21, 2013 Recommend? | Price paid: Not Indicated

 
Pros: see previous post
Cons:
see previous post

UPDATE:
I've tested it against the 105 VR Micro-Nikkor.
The focusing distance was 2 m. As usual, the lens was on tripod (Gitzo with Foba ball head), I used live-view to focus accurately, and MLU.
At f/4 the 105 VR was slightly better (just); @ f/5.6 differences were very subtle. At f/8 I couldn't detect any meaningful difference. Both lenses showed even sharpness across the frame (on D700).


 
Nikon 70-200mm f/4G ED VR AF-S Nikkor

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Review Date: Apr 21, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Sufficiently lightweight, good image quality
Cons:
No tripod collar in the box, distortion, flare (well, I know it's a zoom with many elements and nano-coating can't do miracles).

I have read many reviews of this lens before buying it. However as I tested it, I was a little bit disappointed by its quality. Probably I was expecting too much ... IQ was 'good' but it didn't shine on my D700 (my reference for IQ is my 100/2 Zeiss). Somebody wrote in a forum that it outperforms the AF ED 180/2.8D. I'm not sure it's true ... (I can't verify because I sold my 180 to fund this zoom).
I tested it against my AF ED 200/4 Micro though; focusing distance was 3 m (i.e. 15 times the FL) and the 200 Micro won hands down: lower distortion, lower vignetting and, most important, higher sharpness with 'cleaner' details.
I've not tested it vs my 105 VR Micro yet. As I'll do, I'll let you know.
I tried it with the TC-14 E II and IQ w/open was good; a usable combo when you need more reach, definitely. VR works fine; with the 1.4X I could take sharp pictures at 1/40 s. Very useful feature.
In conclusion, a good zoom but not at the same level as a prime (at the long end). A little bit overpriced if you consider IQ. AF-S and VR are useful features, and Nikon charges you for them.


 
Nikon 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5D IF-ED AF

1998NCP_180
Review Date: Nov 9, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Cheap, lightweight, excellent image quality on both film and DX cameras from f/5.6 onwards. Good behavior in counterlight shots (negligible flare, very few ghosts).
Cons:
Color rendition slightly lower than the AF 20-35/2.8 I owned before I swapped it for this wider zoom. Distorsion at the wide end (fixable by post-processing). Built construction is not as good as pro lenses, however this is the price to be paid for compactness and low weight.

I have used extensively this lens on film bodies. Now I use it on my D200 and it performs even better. CA is very well corrected (bettrer than my AF-S 105/2.8 VR), vignetting on DX is negligible, corner sharpness on DX is very good even at wide apertures.
I performed a side by side comparison with the AF ED 12-24/4 DX at same focal lengths and on both film (F100) and digital (D100) cameras.
You can see the full test here:
http://xoomer.alice.it/ripolini/12-24%20vs%2018-35.htm

The 18-35 won the game!