USED 70-200 F2.8 VR II or NEW 70-200 F4 (VR III)?

Started Jul 28, 2013 | Discussions thread
DavidPonting
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Re: USED 70-200 F2.8 VR II or NEW 70-200 F4 (VR III)?
In reply to Babylon7, Jul 28, 2013

You don't say exactly what you are using it for!

If you're planning to shoot sports, weddings or other action/low-light stuff then the choice is a no-brainer - the f/2.8, because you need f/2.8 for those things (an extra bit of VR doesn't help with subject motion, so the better VR doesn't replace the need for a fast lens)! Alternatively, you can use it as a club - it's built to last, but you pay in weight and cost.

Otherwise you probably want the f/4...

The main factors between them are:

f/2.8 better:

  • Aperture: the f/2.8 obviously wins this!
  • Build quality: Tank-like vs Infantry-carrier-like - the f/4 is good, but nowhere near as good as the f/2.8

Too close to call / situation dependent:

  • IQ: Now we're splitting hairs - the f/2.8 probably has the edge, but it's a very tight margin.
  • Intimidation factor: the f/2.8 is a big lens - if you're shooting people that will get freaked out by a huge lens pointing their way (street photos, kids...), then you might prefer the f/4

f/4 better:

  • VR: Looking at Nikon's CIPA VR table (here (NR)), then you get half a stop more VR-ability with the f/4
  • Close focus: the f/4 focusses closer and doesn't breathe anywhere near as much, if at all - resulting in a much greater magnification ratio.
  • Weight: the f/4 wins easily (though if you need a tripod collar the difference falls somewhat)
  • Cost: the f/4 wins easily (though if you need a tripod collar the difference falls somewhat)
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