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Nikon 180mm f/2.8D ED-IF AF Nikkor

Review Date: Jun 4, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Very well built, compact, relatively light, exceptionally sharp, nice creamy bokeh,
Some have back-front-focus issues. flimsy and (too) short, sliding lens hood AF-MF switching is kinda complicated. but that is the case for all Nikkor lenses from that era

This lens makes beautiful shots with exceptional depth and stunning sharpness. Lovely creamy bokeh. And it also has a distinct "3-D"-like character, with this I mean that the subjects REALLY pops forward in a scene. A definite keeper!!!!

I read that some of these lenses have a small focus-issue (back- or front focus) on some camera's. Mine has this too, and I was happy with the focus fine-adjustments on my DSLR.

On my analogue F100 I always have to correct the focus a tiny bit to get that exceptional sharpness wide open.

This is only an issue when shooting close subjects wide open.

see some shots I made with this lens:

Sigma 12-24mm f4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM

Review Date: Jan 15, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Extremely sharp and contrasty, quick HSM-focus, solid build, very LOW distortion, hardly any chromatic aberrations.
the extreme corners of the image are soft and distorted, but it improves dramatically when stopped down. vulnerable to flare,

I bought this lens as an experiment for an architecture assignment, I wanted to include some extra "spicy" images in the portfolio. I quickly found out that I could use it for almost ANY subject. It is far more versatile that I imagined!!

The extreme wide angle (12mm) on a full frame or film camera really challenges you, and changes the scene, so much, that, when used carefully and properly, one can make interesting shots of almost anything! So, this way, it quickly became my all time favourite lens!

Sigma still is (jan 2013) the only manufacturer that makes lenses this wide, and every mm counts!!!

It features an extra lens shade extension for DX / APS-C camera's, the "normal" shade is metal, and fixed.
There is a new version of this lens on the market, but I can't think of a reason to trade mine in.

Nikon 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF

Review Date: Jan 15, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 7 

Pros: Extreme lightweight, great zoom range (ideal for a full frame film or digital body) for almost any situation, extremely sharp when stopped down a bit. No chromatic aberrations. Close focusing, and nice background bokeh.
Horrible plastic bayonet, extreme barrel distortion (can be easily corrected). When used wide open, the lens is soft, and corners at 28mm are really terrible.

I was looking for an "all-round" lens to fit my D700, and found this one in excellent condition on a 2nd hand market. I wanted to use it for the occasional holiday trip, when I did not want to carry heavy glass with me.

Knowing that this kind of lens always is a compromise, I was very surprised that the image quality was actually very good. (see all the pro remarks).

On the D200 / F80 / F100 / D700, focus is fast enough, no worries there either. So, the only real flaws are the distortion, and the fact that the lens is pretty slow (F3,5 - 5,6) But on a holiday, we all want great weather anyway!!!

This lens will definitely stay!

Sigma 50-500mm f4-6.3 EX APO RF HSM

Review Date: Sep 12, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: love the zoom range, good sharpness when stopped down and used with care, build quality is awesome, tripod collar. 50mm possibility!!!
when manually focusing there is some minor delay in focus when changing direction. I supect 500mm is "not really 500mm", more likely a bit less.

I use this lens (DG-version on Nikon D700) when I need to draw things close, or want to stay at a reasonable distance (like horse photography sessions).
I had to use the in camera AF-fine adjust to achieve best focus accuracy. Otherwise AF (HSM) is quick and silent.

Only when making shots which need to be pixel-peeped, I need a tripod and an extra lens support to get maximum sharpness (manfrotto 293).

It really does what I want it to do, makes nice crispy shots of almost anything in the range from 50 to 500mm.

Of course it's heavy, but that can be expected.

Sigma 180mm f3.5 EX APO Macro IF HSM

Review Date: Sep 12, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Stunning sharpness, large working distance, nice soft bokeh, great build quality. Large lens hood. Nothing extends outward (IF-design).
can't think of any.

I use this lens on a Nikon D700.
The Sigma is awesomely sharp, remains even so with stacked dedicated Sigma converters. (1,4x and/or 2x) This really challenges optical quality, but it delivers!!
With this setup I can go to 3:1, and still remain at some distance from the subject. The large working distance is the main reason for my purchase of this lens.

Nice bokeh, great build quality.
If using the focus limiter, AF (HSM) is quick and absolute silent too. Manual focus is very nice and exact, and it has a comfortable focus grip.

Tokina 12-24mm f/4 AT-X 124 AF PRO DX SD

Review Date: Jan 16, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: very pro build quality, fast AF, sharp images
exhibts some CA, some flare too

It's built like a tank, sharp, and gives me that wide-angle-feeling again, without taking all of my money away.

Bearing in mind that a 12mm focal length is technically quite extreme, therefore I was not surprised to find CA-traces, especially in the corners.
The images with this lens are more detailled and sharper than comparable ones made with the Nikkor 18-70 DX.

Also I like the push-pull clutch for manual focus override.

Nikon 80-200mm f/2.8D ED AF

Review Date: Jan 16, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: absolute total quality of all aspects
very heavy

I own the push-pull version of this lens. It has been with me for many years, and has take a lot of abuse.
It still gives me the best images in all possible situations, especially in low-light situations (indoor sports as Judo and ice-hockey matches, also I make images of my children's performances in lighting situations other parents can not.

It's my absolute favourite! Only a little soft at 2.8.