Tamron AF 18-200mm or Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100

Started Apr 2, 2012 | Discussions
snapshot09
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Tamron AF 18-200mm or Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100
Apr 2, 2012

For those that own the D5100 or D3100, curious if you have either of the following lenses as your primarily or only lens:

  • Tamron AF 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 XR Di II LD Aspherical (IF) Macro Zoom Lens

  • Nikon 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-S DX VR ED Nikkor Lens

Nikon D3100 Nikon D5100
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Coopaw
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Re: Tamron AF 18-200mm or Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100
In reply to snapshot09, Apr 2, 2012

I have a D5100 and use the 18-105 VR Nikon as my primary lens. I don't have any experience with The Tamron 18-200 but I did buy and return the Tamron 18-270. I wasn't satisfied with it's sharpness at the long end. I take a lot of Zoo and wildlife shots and got a 55-300mm VR Nikon instead. I'm happy with the combination. I know there are better lens out there but a relative novice with a somewhat limited budget they work for me.

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ZorSy
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Re: Tamron AF 18-200mm or Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100
In reply to snapshot09, Apr 2, 2012

I recently sold Tamron 18-200, bought few years back cheaply as "disposable lens" when skiing and hiking. Though it served me well on D80, I would steer you away if it's going to be your "main" lens - my 18-105VR is sharp, quick to focus, silent, it's got VR. If you need longer zoom on the budget, buy 70-300 non VR for $100; it will be far sharper and better than Tamron.
cheers

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snapshot09
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Re: Tamron AF 18-200mm or Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100
In reply to Coopaw, Apr 2, 2012

Yes, also on a budget here which is why I am looking for an all in one lens.

Coopaw wrote:

I have a D5100 and use the 18-105 VR Nikon as my primary lens. I don't have any experience with The Tamron 18-200 but I did buy and return the Tamron 18-270. I wasn't satisfied with it's sharpness at the long end. I take a lot of Zoo and wildlife shots and got a 55-300mm VR Nikon instead. I'm happy with the combination. I know there are better lens out there but a relative novice with a somewhat limited budget they work for me.

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Deleted1929
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The 18-105 VR
In reply to snapshot09, Apr 2, 2012

It's a great lens - sharp and contrasty over the whole frame at all focal lengths and apertures.

By comparison the 18-200 is nowhere near as sharp across the frame.

As for the "extra" reach of the 18-200 you'll find that cropping the 18-105 VR gives you just as good results.

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StephenG

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snapshot09
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Re: The 18-105 VR
In reply to Deleted1929, Apr 3, 2012

Thanks for the feedback. Also, not sure of the weight difference, but the 18-105mm might fit better in line with the overall smaller size/weight of the camera.

sjgcit wrote:

It's a great lens - sharp and contrasty over the whole frame at all focal lengths and apertures.

By comparison the 18-200 is nowhere near as sharp across the frame.

As for the "extra" reach of the 18-200 you'll find that cropping the 18-105 VR gives you just as good results.

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StephenG

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mgd43
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Re: Tamron AF 18-200mm or Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100
In reply to snapshot09, Apr 3, 2012

I have a D3100 and an 18-105 VR and I had a Tamron 18-200. The Nikon is sharp over its entire range. The Tamron was a lttle soft at 200mm and it lacks stabilization. I would get the 18-105VR if the 105mm is long enough. If you need longer, you should be able to get a kit with the D3100, 18-55 VR, and either a 55-200 VR or 55-300 VR for a good price.

There are better superzooms than the Tamron 18-200 but they are more expensive. Superzooms are softer, mostly at their long ends, than shorter ratio zooms, but the better ones can produce very good to excellent prints up to 8x10 even at their long ends. I would not, however, recommend a superzoom w/o stabilization. Not only is the stabiization important in a long and relatively slow lens, but they are newer designs. I would also not recommend a superzoom if you print larger than 11x14 or if you are very fussy. Sharpness can be measured objectively, but what is sharp enough is subjective.

All this said, I have an 18-105 VR and a 55-300 VR, but I also have a Tamron 18-270 VC PZD. I use the 18-270 for traveling light. I use the 18-105 VR and 55-300 VR for the zoo and aquarium or any time I'll be shooting a lot at or near 300mm.

 mgd43's gear list:mgd43's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LF1 Nikon Coolpix P7800 Nikon D5200 Nikon AF DX Fisheye-Nikkor 10.5mm f/2.8G ED Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC HSM +4 more
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Mannypr
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Re: Tamron AF 18-200mm or Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100
In reply to mgd43, Apr 3, 2012

The Nikon 18-105 is one sweet inexpensive lens. It is so good I would dare say it is one if not the best inexpensive kit lens right now in the market . It is sharp threw it's full focal lenghts with nice contrast and low distortion . Is it perfect ? Nope , but it is not only good but for the price it's great .

Now , would I change my 18-105mm for a 18-200mm . In reality I have both , the nikon and a Sigma 18-200mm HSM OS lens . I dare say they are different animals altogther . The Nikon is one nice lens , design with quality in it's optics if not in it's built which is another thing . The Sigma is design with practicality in mind . It is nice to have a lens with such a long focal lenghts where you don't have to be hassle by having to change lens so often .

But you do loose quality . At this moment there is no way to design a superzoom with great optics all over threw it's focal lenghts . Law's of physics don't allow it at this point in time of technological development . And if it could be design it's price would be staggering high and it would be one big lens not mentioning very heavy .

So the answer to your question would be if you want quality optics or a more practical alternative . I would dare say your best bet would be to keep your nikon and get when you pockets permit it a 70-300mm VR nikon lens .Then you will have with two lens a long focal lenght covered with quality optics. Take care.

 Mannypr's gear list:Mannypr's gear list
Canon PowerShot A640 Nikon D90 Nikon D7000 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G II Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR +8 more
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snapshot09
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Re: Tamron AF 18-200mm or Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100
In reply to mgd43, Apr 3, 2012

Is the 18-105 still widely available on its own?

mgd43 wrote:

I have a D3100 and an 18-105 VR and I had a Tamron 18-200. The Nikon is sharp over its entire range. The Tamron was a lttle soft at 200mm and it lacks stabilization. I would get the 18-105VR if the 105mm is long enough. If you need longer, you should be able to get a kit with the D3100, 18-55 VR, and either a 55-200 VR or 55-300 VR for a good price.

There are better superzooms than the Tamron 18-200 but they are more expensive. Superzooms are softer, mostly at their long ends, than shorter ratio zooms, but the better ones can produce very good to excellent prints up to 8x10 even at their long ends. I would not, however, recommend a superzoom w/o stabilization. Not only is the stabiization important in a long and relatively slow lens, but they are newer designs. I would also not recommend a superzoom if you print larger than 11x14 or if you are very fussy. Sharpness can be measured objectively, but what is sharp enough is subjective.

All this said, I have an 18-105 VR and a 55-300 VR, but I also have a Tamron 18-270 VC PZD. I use the 18-270 for traveling light. I use the 18-105 VR and 55-300 VR for the zoo and aquarium or any time I'll be shooting a lot at or near 300mm.

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Mannypr
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Re: Tamron AF 18-200mm or Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100
In reply to snapshot09, Apr 3, 2012

I got mine at ebay for 170.00 brand new as a buyer of a kit Nikon d7000 was selling his. There are many selling their 18-105 at ebay. Just check it out.

 Mannypr's gear list:Mannypr's gear list
Canon PowerShot A640 Nikon D90 Nikon D7000 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G II Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR +8 more
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snapshot09
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Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100
In reply to Mannypr, Apr 3, 2012

Found a Manufacturer refurbished one for $259.

Mannypr wrote:

I got mine at ebay for 170.00 brand new as a buyer of a kit Nikon d7000 was selling his. There are many selling their 18-105 at ebay. Just check it out.

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Deleted1929
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Re: Nikon 18-105mm for D3100/D5100
In reply to snapshot09, Apr 3, 2012

A lot of misguided beginners sell their 18-105's looking for something "better". That's a mistake, but it does mean you can pick up used 18-105's cheap. I did.

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StephenG

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snapshot09
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Nikon 18-200mm VR
In reply to Deleted1929, Apr 4, 2012

Is it worth investing in the Nikon 18-200mm VR instead for an all in one camera?

sjgcit wrote:

A lot of misguided beginners sell their 18-105's looking for something "better". That's a mistake, but it does mean you can pick up used 18-105's cheap. I did.

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StephenG

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Deleted1929
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Re: Nikon 18-200mm VR
In reply to snapshot09, Apr 4, 2012

Only you know how often you expect to need to shift from 18mm to 200mm or how often you expect to need to shoot beyond 105mm ( and a crop not being adequate ).

My only real objection to the Nikon 18-200 is that it's relatively soft wide open outside the centre frame, which is not what I want. However if you must have a lens like that then the Nikon is the one to get.

Personally I've no problem with the 18-105 VR and switching to a longer lens should the need arise. I find I'm either shooting mainly within the 18-105 VR or within the scope of another lens ( e.g. a 55-200 VR ) and rarely all of them.

The all-in-one camera and lens is really not the right mentality for DSLR use generally, but if convenience is your priority then it's one way to go.

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StephenG

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snapshot09
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Re: Nikon 18-200mm VR
In reply to Deleted1929, Apr 4, 2012

Yes, convenience is a big concern which is why I am trying to determine whether something like the 18-105mm is sufficient or better to have the 18-200mm VR.

sjgcit wrote:

Only you know how often you expect to need to shift from 18mm to 200mm or how often you expect to need to shoot beyond 105mm ( and a crop not being adequate ).

My only real objection to the Nikon 18-200 is that it's relatively soft wide open outside the centre frame, which is not what I want. However if you must have a lens like that then the Nikon is the one to get.

Personally I've no problem with the 18-105 VR and switching to a longer lens should the need arise. I find I'm either shooting mainly within the 18-105 VR or within the scope of another lens ( e.g. a 55-200 VR ) and rarely all of them.

The all-in-one camera and lens is really not the right mentality for DSLR use generally, but if convenience is your priority then it's one way to go.

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StephenG

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mgd43
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Re: Nikon 18-200mm VR
In reply to snapshot09, Apr 4, 2012

A lot of people on this forum are against superzooms like the 18-200 VR. As I said above, they are not as sharp, especially at the long end, as shorter ratio zooms like a 70-300 VR. That doesn't mean that they are not sharp. They can produce very good to excellent prints up to 8x10. After that you should start to see some softness in shots taken at 135-200mm. Neither I nor anyone else can tell if you will be happy with a superzoom. I'm very happy with my Tamron 18-270 VC PZD, but I don't print larger than 8.5x11. Others have bought superzooms and sold them.

I find superzooms more than just a convenience. I shoot a lot on the street and in the parks of NYC. I find it very useful to be able to go from wideange to long telephoto virtually instantly. It has saved me many missed shots. I can be shooting a wideangle shot of the lake and then quickly zoom out to shoot a bird in flight.

Sometimes the only way one can tell if one will like something is to try it. Why not buy one from B&H or Adorama and try it out and if you don't like it return it for the 18-105 VR and maybe a 70-300 VR or 55-300 VR. They have very good return policies. Just be sure to know their policy in advance.

 mgd43's gear list:mgd43's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LF1 Nikon Coolpix P7800 Nikon D5200 Nikon AF DX Fisheye-Nikkor 10.5mm f/2.8G ED Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC HSM +4 more
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ZorSy
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Re: Nikon 18-200mm VR
In reply to snapshot09, Apr 4, 2012

snapshot09 wrote:

the 18-105mm is sufficient or better to have the 18-200mm VR.

Tamron 18-200, which is a cheap lens (though you have to make sure it's the one with BIM (build-in-motor) version as there are quite a few, the difference is in marking (12, 14 or so, which indicate the version of the same lens). The cheapest one is without motor and can only be used on D70, 80, 90, 7000 on "budget" models, does not have VR/VC. 18-200 is the oldest out of bunch, it used to come as part of the "travel kit" consisting of 11-18 and 18-200 (had both, kept 11-18). If it's worth anything, I had (and still have, but broken) SIgma 18-200 OS HSM. Sigma was optically much better, it had its weak points at particular focal length and other few where it was brilliant. Overall, it was much sharper as Tamron 18-200 is consistently soft. Another thing about "super zooms" - being varifocal lenses, the "200mm" is that only at infinity. At 100ft, they act as only 135mm (compared to "true" telephoto" lens, so for example 70-300 "is that" while 18-200 "is, but conditionally". You mention 18-200 VR , which refers to Nikon lens. That lens IS much better than Tamron 18-200 but costs way more than it.

I tried Tamron 18-270 PZD VC - stabiliser works very nice, it's fast to focus unless zoomed 180mm+, where my camera can't decide about focus and keeps hunting, unless really bright day outside. Perhaps newer models (D7K) have less issues with that lens being 6.3 at those focal lengths, I wouldn't know. Optically, that lens is way better than 18-200 ever was, despite its shortcomings.

I still think that 18-105VR is an excellent lens for the money - I bought mine for AUD$125 second hand as there is an oversupply of these lenses due to Nikon having 2 late models having it as kit lens. "White box" 18-105VR new is sold around for $245-275. Nikon 18-200VRII is 3 times that amount and you can actually get 18-105VR and 70-300VR for less than 18-200VRII alone. It may look like hassle, certainly much better combo as photographics tool.

BTW, I sold my Tamron 18-200 for AUD$95 just few days ago (and I don't think I'm at the loss here, that is what I think about that piece of glass. YMMV)

cheers

 ZorSy's gear list:ZorSy's gear list
Nikon D7100
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Mannypr
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Re: Nikon 18-200mm VR
In reply to ZorSy, Apr 4, 2012

If you do go for a 18 - 200mm lens go for the Nikon which I consider to be the best of them , but as I have already said , it has it's issues to like all superzooms have . If practicality is of paramount importance for you then go with the 18-200mm and leave it at that.

PS...if you are like me , knowing that you bought a optically compromise lens will always be in the back of your head making you think , " I wonder how it would have looked if I went for the 18-105 plus 70-300 combo" you will eventually end up buying them (At least I would)

 Mannypr's gear list:Mannypr's gear list
Canon PowerShot A640 Nikon D90 Nikon D7000 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G II Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR +8 more
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Deleted1929
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Re: Nikon 18-200mm VR
In reply to ZorSy, Apr 4, 2012

Nikon 18-200VRII is 3 times that amount and you can actually get 18-105VR and 70-300VR for less than 18-200VRII alone. It may look like hassle, certainly much better combo as photographics tool.

That's my viewpoint as well.

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StephenG

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snapshot09
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Re: Nikon 18-200mm VR
In reply to Deleted1929, Apr 4, 2012

Keep in mind I am looking for a single lens.

sjgcit wrote:

Nikon 18-200VRII is 3 times that amount and you can actually get 18-105VR and 70-300VR for less than 18-200VRII alone. It may look like hassle, certainly much better combo as photographics tool.

That's my viewpoint as well.

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StephenG

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