Looking for a good walk about lens for D800

Started Dec 7, 2012 | Questions
Kevin Nguyen
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Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
Dec 7, 2012

I just came back from WDW and drag along all my gears. OUCH it was heavy. 70-200, 24-70, etc...

Looking to invest in a nice good walk about lens. Similar to the Nikon 18-200 DX lens, but for FX. Sigma, Tamron, Tokina. Any good suggestion?

Thanks

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Nikon D800
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sfnikon
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to Kevin Nguyen, Dec 7, 2012

Personally I got the 24-85VR and am reasonably happy with it on the D800e.   Others here will recommend the 24-120VR with has more range but is bigger and heavier.

I sometimes like walking out with a 28 or 35mm prime for simplicity, compactness, speed and IQ depending on my mood.

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Reilly Diefenbach
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to Kevin Nguyen, Dec 7, 2012

24-85VR.  Nice and light and sharper than the camera center to border.

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avet4life
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to Reilly Diefenbach, Dec 7, 2012

i have the 24-85vr too. but thinking of moving to the 24-120 vr f4

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Reilly Diefenbach
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to avet4life, Dec 7, 2012

My m.o. with the 24-85VR/D800e is to overframe by 5mm or so when possible and crop off the soft borders in post.  Which leaves about 24MP with sharp edges.  None too shabby.  That way I have a nice inexpensive, light and short lens that doesn't bore a hole in my shoulder after a few hours.  The unit is very sharp and contrasty out to the borders and has very nice VR which allows a handhold down to about 1/20th.  Can't go wrong with the 24-120 or the 24-70 for that matter if you're willng to lug them.

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rrm998
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to Kevin Nguyen, Dec 7, 2012

I'd suggest the 28-300VR. It's the super zoom for the FX body. It's not as sharp as the shorter lens (including the 24-120 which I also have) and the usual super zoom trade offs are there. But you get a 10X range in a single lens.

I wouldn't take the 28-300 with me to Africa but I would take it with me to Disney's Animal Kingdom.

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inasir1971
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to Reilly Diefenbach, Dec 7, 2012

Has anyone compared the output using one of these lenses like the AF-S 24-85 to what something like the Sony RX100 or a micro four thirds (like the Olympus E PL-5 also around $650) with standard zoom or a prime is like?

The RX100 for example costs around the same as the 24-85 - might that be a better or just as good alternative to a D600/D800 with the 24-85? Are we trying too hard to use the big DSLR just for the sake of using it?

The E PL-5 has the same sensor as the OM-D which is better than any Canon APS-C and nearly as good as Nikon DX. There are plenty of good lenses for MFT.

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Reilly Diefenbach
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to inasir1971, Dec 7, 2012

inasir1971 wrote:

Has anyone compared the output using one of these lenses like the AF-S 24-85 to what something like the Sony RX100 or a micro four thirds (like the Olympus E PL-5 also around $650) with standard zoom or a prime is like?

You appear to be making the assumption that the lens isn't up to the resolution of the high MP cameras for which Nikon designed it.  The 24-85VR outresolves the D800e through most of the frame, depending on FL and f stop, as always, which would make the center to mid a whole lot better than the RX100 or anything else Sony.  As well,the edges are not always critical for a particular shot, being either out of focus or not important to the composition.  For edge-critical work, primes are mostly the tool of choice.

The RX100 for example costs around the same as the 24-85 - might that be a better or just as good alternative to a D600/D800 with the 24-85? Are we trying too hard to use the big DSLR just for the sake of using it?

Nah.  Everything is better on the big camera except portability.

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dpham
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to rrm998, Dec 7, 2012

i am using 24-120mm f4... very happy.  I try the 28-300... love the zoo lens but not "wide" enough for some case.  cannot go wrong on either lens

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inasir1971
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to Reilly Diefenbach, Dec 7, 2012

Reilly Diefenbach wrote:

inasir1971 wrote:

Has anyone compared the output using one of these lenses like the AF-S 24-85 to what something like the Sony RX100 or a micro four thirds (like the Olympus E PL-5 also around $650) with standard zoom or a prime is like?

You appear to be making the assumption that the lens isn't up to the resolution of the high MP cameras for which Nikon designed it. The 24-85VR outresolves the D800e through most of the frame, depending on FL and f stop, as always, which would make the center to mid a whole lot better than the RX100 or anything else Sony. As well,the edges are not always critical for a particular shot, being either out of focus or not important to the composition. For edge-critical work, primes are mostly the tool of choice.

The RX100 for example costs around the same as the 24-85 - might that be a better or just as good alternative to a D600/D800 with the 24-85? Are we trying too hard to use the big DSLR just for the sake of using it?

Nah. Everything is better on the big camera except portability.

Thanks.

The impression that I got from some reviews was that it couldn't resolve the D800. Some reviews have been favorable, while others have been much less so - sample variation?

I briefly had a 24-120 f/4 VR but that was hopeless anywhere outside the center. Now having seen some other images I am suspecting that I may have had a bad sample...

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Leonard Shepherd
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Re: Now compomise
In reply to Kevin Nguyen, Dec 7, 2012

Some of the replies seem to be based on internet garbage

It is not true that some sensors out resolve some lenses, or that some lenses out resolve some sensors.

Image resolution (what is recorded) is part made up of sensor resolution in isolation, and part made up of lens resolution in isolation. Increasing either sensor or lens resolution (best of all both) gives more image resolution.

Reducing lens resolution (what the thread is partly about) means less image resolution, but still more than with a 24 or 12 MP body.

The compromise comes with how big you want to print or how much magnification you want to view at on a monitor.

While with care the 18-200 on 12 MP can produce a good 16x12 inch print, the 28-300 at 200mm f5.6 is unlikely to match the 70-200 at 200mm f5.6 in a 30x16 inch print.

The benefit of a compromise, as the OP commented, is lenses like the 28-200 or 24-120 are a lot more portable than three f2.8 zooms.

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Leonard Shepherd
Many problems turn out to be a lack of intimate knowledge of complex modern camera equipment.

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Reilly Diefenbach
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Re: Now compomise
In reply to Leonard Shepherd, Dec 7, 2012

Leonard Shepherd wrote:

Some of the replies seem to be based on internet garbage

It is not true that some sensors out resolve some lenses, or that some lenses out resolve some sensors.

This makes no sense whatsoever.



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Austin Li
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Older lens?
In reply to Kevin Nguyen, Dec 7, 2012

The AF-D 28-105 somehow has very good reputation, and I got one from local Craigslist for 120 bucks. But other than a couple test shots, it is sitting in the bag.  But again I got it only for travel, so I am looking forward to next year to use. For the same purpose, I am deciding the telelens between AF-D 70-210 and the new 70-200 VR f4. I have Tokina 16-28, Nikon 24-70, and 70-200 f2.8 VRII, so I know how heavy they are for travel or just walking around. After several year's travel or vacation, I realize it is totally by luck to get good photos, and all these f2.8 lenses are not worth the energy (for me), and also I found one of my knees is getting trouble.
Here are the testing shots from the 28-105: http://austin65.smugmug.com/Other/Nikkor-28-105-mm-f35-45-AF-D/25829345_xsMJdh#!i=2139405969&k=W8vN9Kr

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AlexBakerPhotoz
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Re: Older lens?
In reply to Austin Li, Dec 7, 2012

When I got my D600, I had the same dilemma. I had to trade in my DX lenses and give up my 16-85 DX which I had really liked. Originally as part of a big trade in I did at Adorama, I got a used 24-85 3.5-4.5 non-VR but after a few test shots and looking at the lens I could see dust inside of it, so I took it back and got the new 24-85 VR and I like it just fine. It's quite sharp with easily correctable distortion, CR and vignetting.  I'm sure the new 24-120 is great too, but this lens was less than 1/2 the cost.

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sjprintz
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Re: Walkabout lens
In reply to AlexBakerPhotoz, Dec 7, 2012

I have the 28-300 and the 24-120 F4 lenses.  I enjoy both on my D800E and both have their pros and cons.  As far as IQ goes, the 24-120 is better and sharper wide open.  The 28-300mm needs to be stopped down for clarity.  The 28-300 has great range but is heavier than the 24-120 (which is no lightweight either).  Finally, the bokeh is better with the 24-120mm.

So if I had to choose one, which would I choose? It really depends on your shooting style for walkabouts.  If you want to grab a few wildlife shots while you're walking around, then the 28-300 is a better choice. However, if you prefer landscapes or portraits, then the 24-120 is the better choice.

SJP

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kayone
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to Kevin Nguyen, Dec 7, 2012

A 50mm f1.8 or f1.4?

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ArtWW
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Re: Older lens?
In reply to Austin Li, Dec 8, 2012

I have a 28-105mm which I purchased brand new several years ago and love it to this day.  This light lens lives on my D800 a significant percentage of time.  It offers tremendous flexibility for me and I find the images made with this lens to be sharp throughout the range.  I like it so much, I can't justify buying a 24-70mm f2.8.

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nikkorwatcher
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to Kevin Nguyen, Dec 9, 2012

Simple question: why doposters often fall into the habit of thinking a super wide range zoom is a walk-around lens? That's a do-it-all like you'd have on a compact or bridge camera. You really want to turn your a $3000 DSLR into a heavy point and shoot?

I think a modest wideangle to portrait lens length would have assured you more DSLR-like quality.

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Mimik
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to Kevin Nguyen, Dec 9, 2012

Just get the 50mm 1.8G. Light and great. Zooms are boring.

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tektrader
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Re: Looking for a good walk about lens for D800
In reply to Mimik, Dec 9, 2012

Mimik wrote:

Just get the 50mm 1.8G. Light and great. Zooms are boring.

This is what I use, fantastically sharp and contrasty.

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Nikon D800 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G Nikon AF-S Teleconverter TC-17E II Nikon AF-S Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8G ED +6 more
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