Just returned my 80-400mm VR AF-S lens

Started May 23, 2013 | Discussions
Peter Damroth
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Re: It depends how you look at it.
In reply to Leonard Shepherd, May 24, 2013

Leonard Shepherd wrote:

I am sure the new 80-400 cannot quite match my 70-200 f2.8 II and 200-400, but it is smaller, lighter and costs 60% less (UK prices) than buying the 2 faster aperture lenses.

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

So what is a good zoom of about 80-300 or 400? Especially a used one ...

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CFynn
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Re: Just returned my 80-400mm VR AF-S lens
In reply to sjprintz, May 24, 2013

sjprintz wrote:

My post was not intended to be bragging about testing a lens and returning it nor did I buy the lens with the intent to return it.  I purchased it based on the good reviews with the hope that it would add a tool to my lens collection . However I was merely pointing out that, in my opinion, the value was not there for this lens.   It is a very good lens but I did not feel the value was there after testing it for several days.

It is an expenive lens - but if you didn't already have the 70-200mm F2.8 + 1.7 TC, I expect the value proposition would probably look a little different - especiallyif you mostly wanted to use it over 200mm.

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CFynn
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Re: Just returned my 80-400mm VR AF-S lens
In reply to nunatak, May 24, 2013

nunatak wrote:

btw, to date, there have no official (IMATEST) reviews i'm aware of — only informal KR style opinions.

I thought IMATEST set-ups are not designed for testing distant focus. Presumably most people would be buying this lens for taking images of objects a fair distance away.  If there is a difference between near and far performance would IMATEST  results be that useful?

i still prefer the IQ of my 300mm f4 AF-S better at 300mm. however, performance and convenience are to me just as important as IQ. especially if i miss the shot while changing out the glass. currently, there is no better safari alternative. if one is going to buy a lens in the first place, it's more efficient to know why one wants it before they buy it. people who collect lenses simply on the basis of their IQ musrt do a very limited range of shooting. still, as long as these retail rentals remain risk free — let the retailer beware.

In good light, I'd imagine 80-400mm  AF-S on a D7100 would give you fantastic range.

i'm less sympathetic to the double standards of an argument where someone whines about the price of the same merchandise their own behavior helped inflate. they're selfishly making it more difficult for people that follow behind them to afford the next iteration of glass.

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CFynn
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Re: Just returned my 80-400mm VR AF-S lens
In reply to ScottRH, May 24, 2013

ScottRH wrote:

paulski66 wrote:

I'm not sure how Nikon is supposed to keep costs down if people buy their products and, despite being satisfied with overall performance, return them for no good reason.

+1

People buy things and can't afford them.

People see a little bit better measurement in some aspect of specifications and somehow think that is going to translate into a vast noticeable difference in performance.

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RichLI
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Re: Just returned my 80-400mm VR AF-S lens
In reply to Geomaticsman, May 24, 2013

Geomaticsman wrote:

Sorry to hear the 80-400VR didn't meet your needs, but I can understand why you wanted to try it. For me, the 80-400VR is good enough to replace my 70-200VRII -- mostly because I need to shoot longer than 200mm most times and don't need f2.8. IMO the 80-400VR IQ beats most 70-200+TC combos, and at half the cost of a used 200-400VR, the 80-400VR provides good value.

But don't pay any mind to the "detractors" about your decision to return it. No lens is perfect and no matter how many reviews you read it's almost impossible to know whether a lens will meet personal expectations until you get it on your camera.

Good luck!

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Gary -- Some Nikon stuff -- and a preference for wildlife in natural light
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I agree that buy and return if not satisfied is a key business value that local and/or mail-order businesses offer to compete.

Sounds like you made a fair (and even if not - who are we to judge?) decision.

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Rich
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paulski66
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Re: Just returned my 80-400mm VR AF-S lens
In reply to Geomaticsman, May 24, 2013

Geomaticsman wrote:

But don't pay any mind to the "detractors" about your decision to return it. No lens is perfect and no matter how many reviews you read it's almost impossible to know whether a lens will meet personal expectations until you get it on your camera.

All fine and good, I guess...just don't in the exact same post, complain about how gear is overpriced when part of the reason is that people return perfectly good gear when they change their minds.

If you want to know why gear costs so much, look no further. We all pay the price for this indecisveness and wishy-washy-ness.

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Pradipta Dutta
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And the rest of the honest consumers pay the price
In reply to fPrime, May 24, 2013

fPrime wrote:

Agreed.  There's something about buying a lens just to compare it and then returning it that's a bit sickening.  If you do this, don't brag about.  It's bad enough that you don't exercise enough research and analysis before ordering a lens and returning it fully functional.  That only raises the buying costs for the rest of us and exposes the lens to potential shipping & handling damage before a more forthright buyer gets the lens.

Yep, totally agree. Just because of those handful of cheaters, rest of the consumers pay the price.

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M Lammerse
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Renting
In reply to sjprintz, May 24, 2013

sjprintz wrote:

I bought this about 1 week ago to use for wildlife on my D800e.  The reviews I read were quite good and I was looking forward to replacing my 70-200mm F2.8 + 1.7 TC with this lens.

I did some comparisons and the 80-400mm is a little sharper than my combination.  At 5.6, the 80-400mm is quite sharp and at F8, it's even better.  When I use the 70-200mm VR + TC, I usually stop down to F2.8 as well.

Unfortunately, the 80-400mm was just a little better in my opinion. Only when I pixel peeped did I really see the difference.  However, it was not enough of a difference to justify the $3000 cost of this lens (BTW I am saying $3000 because you need to buy a new foot for this lens.  Nikon should really give us a good support rather than a nice carrying case).   The lens is also quite wide and hard to hand hold for long.

I think if the lens were priced below $2000 it would be worth it to me.  It just seems overpriced for my needs.  Just my 2 cents.

SJPrintz

Why not rent one in the first place for 1 or 2 days? Gives enough time to evaluate a possible purchase.
Michel
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Alchin
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Re: Renting
In reply to M Lammerse, May 24, 2013

Why not rent one in the first place for 1 or 2 days? Gives enough time to evaluate a possible purchase.
Michel
- To observe without evaluation is the highest form of human intelligence -

Rubbish renting means you are undecided; not ready to buy.  He was ready to buy just did not meet expectation.

He posted his finding so that other in the same boat will not have to buy and return as he did.  What is so wrong with that.

According to some of you folks who think this is increasing the price (don't agree with that notion) he may be actually reducing the price by giving the heads up to others to not do the same.

Cheers.

AC//

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Rick Knepper
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What really is sickening is this logic.
In reply to fPrime, May 24, 2013

fPrime wrote:

Agreed.  There's something about buying a lens just to compare it and then returning it that's a bit sickening.  If you do this, don't brag about.  It's bad enough that you don't exercise enough research and analysis before ordering a lens and returning it fully functional.  That only raises the buying costs for the rest of us and exposes the lens to potential shipping & handling damage before a more forthright buyer gets the lens.

Dear B&H, Adorama, Amazon et all. Please ignore this diatribe. Be apprised that I and many hundreds of thousands of other internet customers will never purchase merchandise at $1000+ that we can't look at and test first. You are in the mail order and Internet sales business so you surely understand the logistics of providing a brick and mortar-type experience from a remote location.

With me, same goes for clothing, cars, other electronics, well heck, even food. If I try a new cereal and it tastes like cr@p to me, it's going back for full refund. I'm not going to be General Mills' field guinea pig and pay to be one. You have enough suckers buying products sight unseen to make a handsome profit but I won't be one of those suckers.

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paulski66
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Re: What really is sickening is this logic.
In reply to Rick Knepper, May 24, 2013

Rick Knepper wrote:

fPrime wrote:

Dear B&H, Adorama, Amazon et all. Please ignore this diatribe. Be apprised that I and many hundreds of thousands of other internet customers will never purchase merchandise at $1000+ that we can't look at and test first. You are in the mail order and Internet sales business so you surely understand the logistics of providing a brick and mortar-type experience from a remote location.

With me, same goes for clothing, cars, other electronics, well heck, even food. If I try a new cereal and it tastes like cr@p to me, it's going back for full refund. I'm not going to be General Mills' field guinea pig and pay to be one. You have enough suckers buying products sight unseen to make a handsome profit but I won't be one of those suckers.

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Rick Knepper, photographer, non-professional, shooting for pleasure, check my profile for gear list and philosophy. TJ said, "Every generation needs a new revolution".

But the lens was fine. There was nothing wrong with it; he just tried it out, and changed his mind about spending the $3,000 on it.

So what is the retailer supposed to do now? Discard the lens? Sell it as a refurb (at a significant loss in the profit margin)? Re-package it and - gasp! - sell it as new?

No one is asking you to be a guinea pig for anyone. Just don't bitch about the high cost of gear if this is how you treat retailers and manufacturers; they have to factor this unscrupulousness into their cost of doing business.

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Stacey_K
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Re: What really is sickening is this logic.
In reply to Rick Knepper, May 24, 2013

Rick Knepper wrote:

fPrime wrote:

Agreed.  There's something about buying a lens just to compare it and then returning it that's a bit sickening.  If you do this, don't brag about.  It's bad enough that you don't exercise enough research and analysis before ordering a lens and returning it fully functional.  That only raises the buying costs for the rest of us and exposes the lens to potential shipping & handling damage before a more forthright buyer gets the lens.

Dear B&H, Adorama, Amazon et all. Please ignore this diatribe. Be apprised that I and many hundreds of thousands of other internet customers will never purchase merchandise at $1000+ that we can't look at and test first. You are in the mail order and Internet sales business so you surely understand the logistics of providing a brick and mortar-type experience from a remote location.

With me, same goes for clothing, cars, other electronics, well heck, even food. If I try a new cereal and it tastes like cr@p to me, it's going back for full refund. I'm not going to be General Mills' field guinea pig and pay to be one. You have enough suckers buying products sight unseen to make a handsome profit but I won't be one of those suckers.

I have to agree that if someone is selling mail order, they can't expect people to buy with a no return policy. I do some online clothes shopping, how can I possibly -know- if it's gonna look good on me without trying it on? I'd say 1/2 is returned next time I go to their retail store.

Seeing a picture of clothes on a model is no different than reading someone's online review of camera gear.. Until you use it you really can't know if it suits your purpose 100%.

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Stacey_K
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Re: Just returned my 80-400mm VR AF-S lens
In reply to paulski66, May 25, 2013

paulski66 wrote:

Geomaticsman wrote:

But don't pay any mind to the "detractors" about your decision to return it. No lens is perfect and no matter how many reviews you read it's almost impossible to know whether a lens will meet personal expectations until you get it on your camera.

All fine and good, I guess...just don't in the exact same post, complain about how gear is overpriced when part of the reason is that people return perfectly good gear when they change their minds.

If you want to know why gear costs so much, look no further. We all pay the price for this indecisveness and wishy-washy-ness.

OK we get it. I've seen you rant about this anyone someone returns something they bought and three times so far in this one thread. I would agree if the person bought it to use for a one time event and then returned it knowing when they bought it they planned to do this.

The OP did research and from when he read, looked like it would be a step up in IQ from what he had. He didn't see the results were much if any better, so returned it. You have no idea is and what the conversation with the sales person was, they might have said "Oh this will be much better than the 70-200+TC", which he found out it wasn't. A lens test can only tell you so much about a lenses performance in a single users selected use of it. Some are sharper at mid distances than infinity etc. And returns are part of retail in any market.

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yray
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Re: And the rest of the honest consumers pay the price
In reply to Pradipta Dutta, May 25, 2013

Pradipta Dutta wrote:

fPrime wrote:

Agreed.  There's something about buying a lens just to compare it and then returning it that's a bit sickening.  If you do this, don't brag about.  It's bad enough that you don't exercise enough research and analysis before ordering a lens and returning it fully functional.  That only raises the buying costs for the rest of us and exposes the lens to potential shipping & handling damage before a more forthright buyer gets the lens.

Yep, totally agree. Just because of those handful of cheaters, rest of the consumers pay the price.

Personally I'm not the one buying just to return, but I think these statements don't hold any water. First, why do you call a cheater someone who didn't find that the product is suitable for him for any reason whatsoever? Second, if it is indeed a handful, how in the world could it possibly affect the overwhelming majority of well-intentioned buyers such as yourself? And third, if this is not a handful, then it should be considered a generally acceptable practice and the overhead has been already accounted for, whether or not this or that particular individual takes advantage of it. I'm inclined to think that the third is the case, and, in the US at least, retailers operate this way, while Nikon lens pricing has nothing to do with it, e.g. compare to Sigma and try to convince me that Nikon manufacturing and engineering practices are so much more  advanced (especially in the light of recent QC debacles) that they have the right to charge almost 100% premium over Sigma, which incidentally makes most of its products in JAPAN, AFAIK.

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Devendra
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I wish I was brave like you are..
In reply to sjprintz, May 25, 2013

sjprintz wrote:

I bought this about 1 week ago to use for wildlife on my D800e.  The reviews I read were quite good and I was looking forward to replacing my 70-200mm F2.8 + 1.7 TC with this lens.

I did some comparisons and the 80-400mm is a little sharper than my combination.  At 5.6, the 80-400mm is quite sharp and at F8, it's even better.  When I use the 70-200mm VR + TC, I usually stop down to F2.8 as well.

Unfortunately, the 80-400mm was just a little better in my opinion. Only when I pixel peeped did I really see the difference.  However, it was not enough of a difference to justify the $3000 cost of this lens (BTW I am saying $3000 because you need to buy a new foot for this lens.  Nikon should really give us a good support rather than a nice carrying case).   The lens is also quite wide and hard to hand hold for long.

I think if the lens were priced below $2000 it would be worth it to me.  It just seems overpriced for my needs.  Just my 2 cents.

SJPrintz

once I buy the lenses - despite overlapping ranges, its difficult for me to return or sell them off.. each one has its unique strengths. oh as far as cost is concerned, it was reasoned out before I BOUGHT the lens.

so your decision to buy try n return sounds more like a regular habit than a fault or price of the lens... and you just raised the price for rest of us.

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Gradybaby
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Nikon 80-400 4.5-5.6 looks pretty good to me.
In reply to Devendra, May 25, 2013

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Midwest
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Re: Just returned my 80-400mm VR AF-S lens
In reply to bflood, May 25, 2013

bflood wrote:

Walmart sees it all the time. Just not at $3,000 per item.

In the 1990s, my wife worked for a few months in a store that sold what I call fine breakables - upscale dishes, glassware, etc. It was common for local women to buy pieces on Wed or Thu and return them on Monday - following the party. Some didn't even bother to wash them. Lots of people buy things with no real intent on keeping them.

Consumers have sometimes a very strange sense that 'whatever the store will let me do is permissible so long as it puts money back in my pocket'. Did your fine breakables store give refunds to people who brought back dirty dishes?

My wife works at a grocery store. Some people go to the local food pantry, where the outdated (but still quite edible) baked goods from my wife's store are donated. They get bread or a cake and then bring it back to my wife's grocery store seeking to have it replaced because they got it and it was 'out of date'. Never mind that they got it for free for that very reason, and then they don't understand when they're told 'uh, no, we won't replace that for you'.

I think even WalMart is tightening their policy about giving refunds to anyone who merely walks in the door with something and asks for money. They have to. It is an expense to them.

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M Lammerse
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Renting not ranting
In reply to Alchin, May 25, 2013

No, renting means that you can see if it is worth the money to purchase in relation to what you already have and to see if it meets your expectations.
I only rent lenses by temporary need (only a few times a year.) So that might also be a good reason to rent.

The OP mentioned that especially financially (price) in relation what h already uses is a reason to bring it back. If so it might be wiser to rent a lens for 1 or more days to evacuate it.

I did not mention anything that it ruins some one else his/her purchase because of an increase in price. My name is also not 'some of you folks'

Michel

Alchin wrote:


Why not rent one in the first place for 1 or 2 days? Gives enough time to evaluate a possible purchase.
Michel
- To observe without evaluation is the highest form of human intelligence -

Rubbish renting means you are undecided; not ready to buy.  He was ready to buy just did not meet expectation.

He posted his finding so that other in the same boat will not have to buy and return as he did.  What is so wrong with that.

According to some of you folks who think this is increasing the price (don't agree with that notion) he may be actually reducing the price by giving the heads up to others to not do the same.

Cheers.

AC//

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Shotcents
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In reply to M Lammerse, May 25, 2013

I have returned only a few lenses.....

The 16-35 F4...because of the distortion and lack of sharpness at the long end. YES, I knew about these flaws beforehand, but I did not grasp the degree until I tested on my own camera. I also tested the Tokina 16-28 2.8 and that is the lens I kept.

The 24-120 F4...though this was a open copy loaned to me by a store.

And a few others. I usually try to borrow a friends lens, such as the 85mm 1.4G that I was able to closely compare to my 1.8G copy.

In most cases I keep what I buy, but once in a blue-moon I return an item because it does not meet my expectations. I see nothing wrong with the OP comments. He was hoping for performance that well exceeded what he already had and did not get it.

After many reviews and sample shots, I'm still not exactly sure where the 80-400 sits for IQ, so his trial seems reasonable to me. I seriously doubt his return is damaging my buying experience. If everyone suddenly stopped returning gear and improved Nikon's profits, they would NOT pass it down to the consumer anyway.

Cheers,

Robert

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aldel
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Re: Just returned my 80-400mm VR AF-S lens
In reply to fPrime, May 25, 2013

In the UK you would not be able to that.

Unless faulty or not fit for purpose then once purchased it is yours. Does the vendor now have to sell as pre-owned?

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