Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

Started 4 months ago | Discussions
OP sirhawkeye64 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,500
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

Jocksa wrote:

If you're looking for a DSLR for wildlife or sport, the D500 is excellent.

If you're looking for a DSLR for travel, I'd recommend the D7100.

I have both and what the D7100 lacks in AF performance compared to the D500, it more than makes up in size, weight, battery life and price/expendability for travel.

OK thanks. No this is more for wildlife but I've had to rule out the D500 due to size and weight. The grip is feels too big to me (I have smaller hands) so adding a lens (like a 200-500) makes me feel like I'm going to drop the thing (this is partially why I went to the Z cameras--smaller lighter bodies, but they aren't really the best for wildlife, but great for travel and everything else).

I'm actually contemplating a D7200 (used) or a D7500.

 sirhawkeye64's gear list:sirhawkeye64's gear list
Fujifilm X-T20 Nikon Z7 Nikon Z5 Nikon Z7 II GoPro Hero8 Black +13 more
NCB Senior Member • Posts: 1,717
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

OK thanks. No this is more for wildlife but I've had to rule out the D500 due to size and weight. The grip is feels too big to me (I have smaller hands) so adding a lens (like a 200-500) makes me feel like I'm going to drop the thing (this is partially why I went to the Z cameras--smaller lighter bodies, but they aren't really the best for wildlife, but great for travel and everything else).

I'm actually contemplating a D7200 (used) or a D7500.

Reckon spending time with the Zs, even if they may not get to where you want to with wildlife, is a very good idea. It takes time to work out what a camera will do, especially a newish range like this.

Also, there may be further Z developments coming up which may be of use to you.

 NCB's gear list:NCB's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 Nikon D3100 Nikon Df Nikon Z6 Nikon Z50
OP sirhawkeye64 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,500
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

NCB wrote:

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

OK thanks. No this is more for wildlife but I've had to rule out the D500 due to size and weight. The grip is feels too big to me (I have smaller hands) so adding a lens (like a 200-500) makes me feel like I'm going to drop the thing (this is partially why I went to the Z cameras--smaller lighter bodies, but they aren't really the best for wildlife, but great for travel and everything else).

I'm actually contemplating a D7200 (used) or a D7500.

Reckon spending time with the Zs, even if they may not get to where you want to with wildlife, is a very good idea. It takes time to work out what a camera will do, especially a newish range like this.

Also, there may be further Z developments coming up which may be of use to you.

I'd say based on my trials so far, I feel it's possible, and some of my misses could have been from skills/technique too, but I do still find that tracking with the Z's lags behind most of the more modern DSLRs (ie. those made in the last 4 years) from Nikon. I'm going to wait and try with my Z7 II which should be arriving this week and then decide if I really need a DX DSLR or if the Z7 II is capable (enough) for my needs.

The benefit there is I just then have to buy a long telephoto zoom for wildlife (which I was going to have to buy anyway regardless of what body I use).

 sirhawkeye64's gear list:sirhawkeye64's gear list
Fujifilm X-T20 Nikon Z7 Nikon Z5 Nikon Z7 II GoPro Hero8 Black +13 more
bluzman
bluzman Senior Member • Posts: 1,022
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

I'm actually contemplating a D7200 (used) or a D7500.

My D7500 with either a Nikon AF-P DX 70-300 or Sigma 100-400mm Contemporary mounted is my go-to wildlife camera.

https://www.mpb.com/en-us/used-equipment/used-photo-and-video/used-digital-slr-cameras/used-nikon-digital-slr-cameras/nikon-d7500/

 bluzman's gear list:bluzman's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DC-FZ1000 II Nikon D750 Nikon D7500 Nikon D3500 Nikon Z50 +19 more
Sactojim Veteran Member • Posts: 8,418
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

NCB wrote:

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

OK thanks. No this is more for wildlife but I've had to rule out the D500 due to size and weight. The grip is feels too big to me (I have smaller hands) so adding a lens (like a 200-500) makes me feel like I'm going to drop the thing (this is partially why I went to the Z cameras--smaller lighter bodies, but they aren't really the best for wildlife, but great for travel and everything else).

I'm actually contemplating a D7200 (used) or a D7500.

Reckon spending time with the Zs, even if they may not get to where you want to with wildlife, is a very good idea. It takes time to work out what a camera will do, especially a newish range like this.

Also, there may be further Z developments coming up which may be of use to you.

I'd say based on my trials so far, I feel it's possible, and some of my misses could have been from skills/technique too, but I do still find that tracking with the Z's lags behind most of the more modern DSLRs (ie. those made in the last 4 years) from Nikon. I'm going to wait and try with my Z7 II which should be arriving this week and then decide if I really need a DX DSLR or if the Z7 II is capable (enough) for my needs.

The benefit there is I just then have to buy a long telephoto zoom for wildlife (which I was going to have to buy anyway regardless of what body I use).

Time to visit a real camera shop instead of try, don't like, return, repeat.

bluzman
bluzman Senior Member • Posts: 1,022
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras? : CLARIFICATION

Sactojim wrote:

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

David5833 wrote:

How about $69 for a factory refurb: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1386306-REG/nikon_20059b_af_p_dx_nikkor_18_55mm.html/?ap=y&ap=y&smp=y&smp=y&lsft=BI%3A514&gclid=Cj0KCQiAx9mABhD0ARIsAEfpavTjXzX5I-abjcKpOGoro_JAdrALeBmO9wpD3HZ57Ptt7vVFj8LLd90aArdVEALw_wcB

I might actually do that. Not a bad price by any means and if it broke within a year, not a big deal at $69.

Absolutely a excellent lens with it's light weight, fast AF, silent, and sharp at all length. Must have.

Absolutely agree...I just replaced one I sold a while ago (part of a D5600 package deal)  with a used one from Adorama ($69). Here are a couple of shots using the D5600.

18mm

55mm

 bluzman's gear list:bluzman's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DC-FZ1000 II Nikon D750 Nikon D7500 Nikon D3500 Nikon Z50 +19 more
2yota Regular Member • Posts: 114
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?
1

embie wrote:

Labe wrote:

I got the 18-200VR and tamron 70-300 ( not the el cheapo one)

The 18-200mm VR won't feed the bulldog on a 21 Megapixels (D500) camera.

eMBie

I actually really like the 18-140 for travel.  Image quality comes out pretty darn close to my 16-80.  The 18-140 is noticeably lighter too which would be a huge plus if carrying around all day.  And it's way cheaper than a 16-80 lens so even if it gets banged around a bit or damaged, you're in it for a lot less to start.  That's the lens I usually pair with my D7500 for my travels.

No one seems to like the 18-200 VR for today's modern camera's.  The build quality of this lens is actually quite solid.  Much closer to the build of the 16-80 lens whereas the 18-140 reflects a slightly "cheaper" build.  When I'm pixel peeping, the 18-140 is a little sharper than the 18-200 in the centre.  But for everyday shots, I wouldn't even know which lens was which.  Having said that, it's still hard for me to recommend the 18-200 knowing that the 18-140 can be had for equal or lesser cost.  So there's my vote.

Just for the heck of it, here's a shot I massaged out of my 18-200 VR2:

Nikon 18-200mm VR2 with Z50

 2yota's gear list:2yota's gear list
Nikon Coolpix A Nikon Coolpix P340 Nikon D7500 Nikon Z50 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR +11 more
OP sirhawkeye64 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,500
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

bluzman wrote:

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

I'm actually contemplating a D7200 (used) or a D7500.

My D7500 with either a Nikon AF-P DX 70-300 or Sigma 100-400mm Contemporary mounted is my go-to wildlife camera.

https://www.mpb.com/en-us/used-equipment/used-photo-and-video/used-digital-slr-cameras/used-nikon-digital-slr-cameras/nikon-d7500/

Yeah I'm starting to like the idea of the D7500 (except the fact is only has a single card slot) for price and size reasons (slightly thinner than a D500 and I feel I can get a better grip of the 7500 than I can on the D500)--plus it's a bit lighter too.

I might have to try out the Sigma. I've been leaning towards the Tamron but since they are priced basically the same, I might as well try it out and see. I have heard the Sigma is more evenly sharp over the frame (which is good for landscape work), but the Tamron has a few positives in its court too (faster AF, sharper in the middle/center I guess but softer corners--but it would be nice to have a lens that can double up as a widlife/landscape lens).  I had the AFP 70-300 and ended up returning it.  Maybe my copy wasn't all that great but i didn't feel it was all that sharp beyond about 250mm.

 sirhawkeye64's gear list:sirhawkeye64's gear list
Fujifilm X-T20 Nikon Z7 Nikon Z5 Nikon Z7 II GoPro Hero8 Black +13 more
Timotis77
Timotis77 Contributing Member • Posts: 584
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

So long story short, I decided to buy a D500 mainly for wildlife, but also as a backup camera and was wondering about a good "travel zoom" lens for the DX series F-mount cameras. I don't want to spend a ton of money on it, as it's a backup in case my Z camera decides to stop working for whatever reason while on vacation or a trip (although after 18 months, knock on wood, no problems, I do make it a habit to bring 2 camera bodies just in case).

Thoughts? I am OK with used too and I'd say probably no more than about $600 for a lens, again, because it will mainly be for backup use (as I'm buying a used D500 body, not a kit).

I know that some people have said the Tamron 18-400 is something to consider, although not the sharpest because of what it is, but for the money, it's one of the better travel zooms and offers a generous zoom range. Of course this lens new is about $650 and that might be OK. I just am not looking to spend upwards of $1000+.

Tamron 35-150mm..........Great for DX and FX.....

Craftsman70 Regular Member • Posts: 290
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

2yota wrote:

No one seems to like the 18-200 VR for today's modern camera's. The build quality of this lens is actually quite solid. Much closer to the build of the 16-80 lens whereas the 18-140 reflects a slightly "cheaper" build. When I'm pixel peeping, the 18-140 is a little sharper than the 18-200 in the centre. But for everyday shots, I wouldn't even know which lens was which. Having said that, it's still hard for me to recommend the 18-200 knowing that the 18-140 can be had for equal or lesser cost. So there's my vote.

I like the 18-200 as well for a decent travel/walkaround lens while travelling.

BTW> The general opinion on the 18-200 hasn't really changed over the years.  Many people who have never tried the lens disliked it when it was first introduced and they may be the same type of people who dislike it now with the higher resolution bodies.

 Craftsman70's gear list:Craftsman70's gear list
Nikon D200 Nikon D7000 Nikon D7200 Nikon D780 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED VR +9 more
Sactojim Veteran Member • Posts: 8,418
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras? : CLARIFICATION

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

So long story short, I decided to buy a D500 mainly for wildlife, but also as a backup camera and was wondering about a good "travel zoom" lens for the DX series F-mount cameras. I don't want to spend a ton of money on it, as it's a backup in case my Z camera decides to stop working for whatever reason while on vacation or a trip (although after 18 months, knock on wood, no problems, I do make it a habit to bring 2 camera bodies just in case).

Thoughts? I am OK with used too and I'd say probably no more than about $600 for a lens, again, because it will mainly be for backup use (as I'm buying a used D500 body, not a kit).

I know that some people have said the Tamron 18-400 is something to consider, although not the sharpest because of what it is, but for the money, it's one of the better travel zooms and offers a generous zoom range. Of course this lens new is about $650 and that might be OK. I just am not looking to spend upwards of $1000+.

OK just to clarify a few things:

* The amount I specified was semi-random. I mean I could go $1000 if I wanted (it's not so much a budget thing, but sometimes I find I'm talking myself into something and before I know it, I'm at 2x what I oroginally planned to spend, so I purposely set the bar low.

* By travel zoom, I"m really looking for something that goes from wide to narrow (probably don't need anything longer than 200mm). I know "travel zoom" can be mistaken for meaning wildlife lens, which I'm not really looing for (although I may go back and pick up a 70-300 FX AF-P lens at some point, so really, the range could be even shorter (like 18-100mm or so, so the 18-140 might be an option too and can be had relatively inexpensively on the used market).

* The reason I mentioned the 18-400 tamron was because I head it got some good reviews for what it is. Obviously it's not the same as using, say a 24-70 and 100-400 or even a 70-200 f/4 in crop mode on a full frame camera, given the price and what I saw and heard on the Tamron, I had to include it in my consideration.

* I've heard mixed reviews on the 18-200's, and for that matter the DX Versions of the 70-300 and 55-300.

In the end, I don't want to invest a ton of money as this is NOT my primary camera (it's basically going to be my backup camera for everything, but it will be my primary system for wildlife where I need accurate and fast AF--as everyone knows the Z's lag in this department). But for everything else, I have my Z camera system. I just don't want to get stuck traveling somewhere and have a "backup" body but no lenses for it. I'd go as far to say I'd be happy with "Something" than nothing, because when you're overseas, it's not as easy to pop in a camera store and buy a lens. It might be easier in the US with places like BestBuy scatted throughout the country not to mention small camera stores in between, but again this is primarily for backup purposes, and would need to be "acceptably" sharp given the use case I mentioned.

Since I was planning on getting an AF-P 70-300 I might also just settle for the DX 35mm and call it a day. It's only $200 and gives an approximate view of 52mm and yeah I'd be losing the wide end. I mean I guess the other option would be to find someone who doesn't want their 18-55 kit lens as you can find those for $100 or less.

Lens rental and then no guessing, speculation, round and round consideration, etc. Only way to know what you are getting..

embie
embie Senior Member • Posts: 2,480
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

Craftsman70 wrote:

2yota wrote:

No one seems to like the 18-200 VR for today's modern camera's. The build quality of this lens is actually quite solid. Much closer to the build of the 16-80 lens whereas the 18-140 reflects a slightly "cheaper" build. When I'm pixel peeping, the 18-140 is a little sharper than the 18-200 in the centre. But for everyday shots, I wouldn't even know which lens was which. Having said that, it's still hard for me to recommend the 18-200 knowing that the 18-140 can be had for equal or lesser cost. So there's my vote.

I like the 18-200 as well for a decent travel/walkaround lens while travelling.

BTW> The general opinion on the 18-200 hasn't really changed over the years. Many people who have never tried the lens disliked it when it was first introduced and they may be the same type of people who dislike it now with the higher resolution bodies.

How  can anybody dislikes a lens which they never have used ?

That makes no sense.

Personally I have used aswell the VR I as the VR II version of this lens on the D40X and the D90 bodies.

It was bearable on the D40X but I upgraded to the D90 and moved on to the VR II.

From then on I wasn't satisfied of the IQ at all, all due to the lack of sharpness.

eMBie

-- hide signature --

"Travel is fatal...for prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness" (Mark Twain) - "The world...is our home" (eMBie)
You can edit and repost my pictures until you drop but they will still be mine Please respect my copyright

 embie's gear list:embie's gear list
Nikon D7200 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 Olympus TG-5 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-140mm F3.5-5.6G ED VR Nikon AF-P 70-300mm F4.5-6.3G VR +2 more
PHXAZCRAIG
PHXAZCRAIG Forum Pro • Posts: 17,469
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?
1

This always gets into the focal-range-versus-IQ argument along with price and weight.

On the one end of the continuum is a cell phone with prime lens. On the other end is a gripped DSLR with a superzoom interchangeable lens - all the range and all the weight. In between are lots of intermediate steps.

Anyway, it would help to know where you draw the limit for IQ as it relates to prime/short zoom/longer zoom/superzoom.

For instance, 18-400 OK with you if the price was right? Or is that just a bit too much zoom and not enough IQ?

Here's my experience followed by my recommendations, which are of course colored by my experience.

I was always one of those 'get the best IQ you can' types, sort of leaning towards shooting mostly primes if I could. (Back to my film days). When I started shooting, zooms were fairly new (1960's), and poor quality. I think those early days still hang on with us as an echo in the constant 'which lens is sharpest' debates here. As if there is a huge difference in sharpness between brands and lenses. The differences are nothing like they used to be, when you could get a real stinker of a lens. These days if you shop by price you'll find similar quality at similar price ranges.

So in my early history, there was good reason to be concerned about lens IQ. Things are a lot better and more consistent now, but for a long time (80's, 90's?) a short zoom (35-70, 24-50, 80-200) could be decent, but kit lenses were still suspect. Superzooms didn't really exist yet, beyond the 28-300 slow zooms that were around then.

Now you have some really reasonable choices, in that IQ isn't all the bad even for an 18-300 or 18-400, especially with a lot of pixels behind it. (More resolution helps even poor lenses).

My own story goes back to a D200 and an 18-200. When the 18-200 came out, it was in so much demand you couldn't find one, and everyone raved about it. Better IQ than one should expect for such a lens! I got one, and for a while I was very happy with it. (And it has both strong and weak areas for IQ). But one day I was trying to coax all the landscape detail I could out of it, shooting at F8, on a tripod, 43mm - just mostly playing at the lens' strong points. Except I couldn't get it quite as sharp as I wanted. Here is the shot that I thought just wasn't sharp enough. https://www.cjcphoto.net/landscapes/images/page2.html

It's not really large enough on that web page to see, but I was working with the NEF files and just couldn't be quite satisfied. For me, the IQ wasn't good enough.

So I proceeded to build my own travel kit, soon based around a D300. Here's what I ended up with, including the bag to use:

https://www.cjcphoto.net/misc2/speedracer.html

This kit has been working for me, with updated lenses and cameras, for D300, D700, D800e, D810 and now D850.   It's definitely got something going for it.  I've been in a lot of countries with this bag, stuffed with similar lenses.

For DX, I started with a normal zoom and built around that.  My choices then were 17-55F2.8 DX or 24-70F2.8g.    You may have though about this too, if you were planning on moving from DX to FX at some point.   I chose to build around the 24-70 F2.8 (Nikon) a lot in part because I knew I was going to get an FX camera and the 17-55 would be obsoleted.

Then I needed more focal range.   I chose the 12-24DX zoom then because the 10-24 wasn't out yet or I would have bought that.  When I did move to a D700, I had to replace this lens, and I chose the 16-35.  (My 14-24 wouldn't fit in the bag).

For the long end, you might be surprised.  I carry the 80-400, AF-D version at first, G version later.  I could have taken my 70-200F2.8 instead as it is the same size in the bag.  But the 80-400 has proven more versatile.   And it's got a lot better IQ than an 18-400, and a lot more range than an anything-200.

Is that a fair amount of weight?   Yep!  But it's also carried efficiently in that bag, putting most of the weigh on my hips and not my shoulders or spine.  I also can carry it with both hands free, I can run as needed, I can slide it to the front to sit down, and I can work standing up with it in front.   Even with less weight in it the bag would be extremely handy.

So - to really guide you, we need to know at what IQ point you draw the line, and how much weight you are willing to consider as well.

A note on the 18-200vr.   This lens really went from having a stellar reputation to one of mediocrity.  Some of that is due to going from 6mp cameras to 24, but also people don't understand where it is weakest, to avoid those areas.   In generally, the lens is best at short distance on the wide side.   It's weakest when you try to zoom in on a distant object (like wildlife).   If you have a lens like this and can simply avoid shooting it at its weak points, it becomes a viable travel lens again.

So - DX camera, travel zoom.  By definition needs a focal range and light weight.  Only you can say how much range is enough, how much weight is too much, and especially how much sharpness you require.

-- hide signature --

Phoenix Arizona Craig
www.cjcphoto.net
"I miss the days when I was nostalgic."

 PHXAZCRAIG's gear list:PHXAZCRAIG's gear list
Nikon D80 Nikon D200 Nikon D300 Nikon D700 Nikon 1 V1 +37 more
Craftsman70 Regular Member • Posts: 290
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

embie wrote:

Craftsman70 wrote:

2yota wrote:

No one seems to like the 18-200 VR for today's modern camera's. The build quality of this lens is actually quite solid. Much closer to the build of the 16-80 lens whereas the 18-140 reflects a slightly "cheaper" build. When I'm pixel peeping, the 18-140 is a little sharper than the 18-200 in the centre. But for everyday shots, I wouldn't even know which lens was which. Having said that, it's still hard for me to recommend the 18-200 knowing that the 18-140 can be had for equal or lesser cost. So there's my vote.

I like the 18-200 as well for a decent travel/walkaround lens while travelling.

BTW> The general opinion on the 18-200 hasn't really changed over the years. Many people who have never tried the lens disliked it when it was first introduced and they may be the same type of people who dislike it now with the higher resolution bodies.

How can anybody dislikes a lens which they never have used ?

That makes no sense.

I completely agree.  But if you go back to the various camera threads when the 18-200 was introduced, you'll see what I mean.

People do this today for camera bodies.  Just mention a D780 and you'll get all sort of negative responses from people who have never even touched a D780 or did any real research on the camera.

Personally I have used aswell the VR I as the VR II version of this lens on the D40X and the D90 bodies.

It was bearable on the D40X but I upgraded to the D90 and moved on to the VR II.

From then on I wasn't satisfied of the IQ at all, all due to the lack of sharpness.

eMBie

That's fine.  You had the lens, you tried the lens and you dislike the results.  Perfectly OKAY and great user feedback!

 Craftsman70's gear list:Craftsman70's gear list
Nikon D200 Nikon D7000 Nikon D7200 Nikon D780 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED VR +9 more
2yota Regular Member • Posts: 114
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

embie wrote:

Craftsman70 wrote:

2yota wrote:

No one seems to like the 18-200 VR for today's modern camera's. The build quality of this lens is actually quite solid. Much closer to the build of the 16-80 lens whereas the 18-140 reflects a slightly "cheaper" build. When I'm pixel peeping, the 18-140 is a little sharper than the 18-200 in the centre. But for everyday shots, I wouldn't even know which lens was which. Having said that, it's still hard for me to recommend the 18-200 knowing that the 18-140 can be had for equal or lesser cost. So there's my vote.

I like the 18-200 as well for a decent travel/walkaround lens while travelling.

BTW> The general opinion on the 18-200 hasn't really changed over the years. Many people who have never tried the lens disliked it when it was first introduced and they may be the same type of people who dislike it now with the higher resolution bodies.

How can anybody dislikes a lens which they never have used ?

That makes no sense.

Personally I have used aswell the VR I as the VR II version of this lens on the D40X and the D90 bodies.

It was bearable on the D40X but I upgraded to the D90 and moved on to the VR II.

From then on I wasn't satisfied of the IQ at all, all due to the lack of sharpness.

eMBie

In terms of sharpness (focus accuracy), I actually had some problems with my copy of the 18-200 when used on my dslr’s.  Despite using AF fine tune, I was never able to dial in a setting that would be perfectly sharp throughout the entire focal range.   If I could get it sharp at one end, it would be off at the other end.  This was verified with engaging live view and focusing using contrast detect which yielded perfectly sharp results out of my 18-200.  That’s why using the 18-200 on my Z50 now has resurrected new life into it as it shoots perfectly sharp both at the wide and long ends throughout the aperture range too.   See my photo posted in previous thread ... I think it captured a fair bit of detail in it along with decent corners too, no?

But once again, if it wasn’t for the fact that I already own this lens (18-200), I wouldn’t go out of my way today to buy one when there’s others that can be had for cheaper.

 2yota's gear list:2yota's gear list
Nikon Coolpix A Nikon Coolpix P340 Nikon D7500 Nikon Z50 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR +11 more
2yota Regular Member • Posts: 114
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

PHXAZCRAIG wrote:

My own story goes back to a D200 and an 18-200. When the 18-200 came out, it was in so much demand you couldn't find one, and everyone raved about it. Better IQ than one should expect for such a lens! I got one, and for a while I was very happy with it. (And it has both strong and weak areas for IQ). But one day I was trying to coax all the landscape detail I could out of it, shooting at F8, on a tripod, 43mm - just mostly playing at the lens' strong points. Except I couldn't get it quite as sharp as I wanted. Here is the shot that I thought just wasn't sharp enough. https://www.cjcphoto.net/landscapes/images/page2.html

It's not really large enough on that web page to see, but I was working with the NEF files and just couldn't be quite satisfied. For me, the IQ wasn't good enough.

I also posted a photo of my 18-200 used on a modern day camera further up in this same  thread:

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/64812999

i remember I was just shooting hand-held that day.  Conditions were cold with a bit of wind, and I really had to pee ... so things probably weren’t the most ideal on a “stability” standpoint but the VR seemed to have done the trick and I think the lens retained a fair amount of detail too.

 2yota's gear list:2yota's gear list
Nikon Coolpix A Nikon Coolpix P340 Nikon D7500 Nikon Z50 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR +11 more
jshen808
jshen808 Forum Pro • Posts: 16,067
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

So long story short, I decided to buy a D500 mainly for wildlife, but also as a backup camera and was wondering about a good "travel zoom" lens for the DX series F-mount cameras...

..

Here's my D500 camera with 18-300mm f/3.5-5.6 lens.

They are a perfect fit, and is a great combo together.

..

For indoors and lower lightings,

recommend the 17-55mm f/2.8 lens.

..

Cheers!

-- hide signature --

Cheers, John
(Feel free to download my pictures)
*** Photography is about fun ***
*** No response = ignore list ***

 jshen808's gear list:jshen808's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300 Panasonic FZ80/FZ82
jshen808
jshen808 Forum Pro • Posts: 16,067
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

bluzman wrote:

sirhawkeye64 wrote:

I'm actually contemplating a D7200 (used) or a D7500.

My D7500 with either a Nikon AF-P DX 70-300 or Sigma 100-400mm Contemporary mounted is my go-to wildlife camera.

https://www.mpb.com/en-us/used-equipment/used-photo-and-video/used-digital-slr-cameras/used-nikon-digital-slr-cameras/nikon-d7500/

Yeah I'm starting to like the idea of the D7500 (except the fact is only has a single card slot) for price and size reasons (slightly thinner than a D500 and I feel I can get a better grip of the 7500 than I can on the D500)--plus it's a bit lighter too.

I might have to try out the Sigma. I've been leaning towards the Tamron but since they are priced basically the same, I might as well try it out and see. I have heard the Sigma is more evenly sharp over the frame (which is good for landscape work), but the Tamron has a few positives in its court too (faster AF, sharper in the middle/center I guess but softer corners--but it would be nice to have a lens that can double up as a widlife/landscape lens). I had the AFP 70-300 and ended up returning it. Maybe my copy wasn't all that great but i didn't feel it was all that sharp beyond about 250mm.

..

For those with the D7500 camera,

recommend the 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 lens,

and also recommend the 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5 lens,

as these lenses are a perfect fit with the D7500 camera.

..

Cheers!

-- hide signature --

Cheers, John
(Feel free to download my pictures)
*** Photography is about fun ***
*** No response = ignore list ***

 jshen808's gear list:jshen808's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300 Panasonic FZ80/FZ82
Doug Greenberg Contributing Member • Posts: 814
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

I have read that the Tamron 35-150 is a very good lens, but only for full-frame. For DX there is, essentially, no wide-angle coverage (35mm on DX equals approx. 50 mm FX).

 Doug Greenberg's gear list:Doug Greenberg's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P7800 Nikon 1 V2 Nikon D500 Nikon D850 Nikon Z7 +12 more
Doug Greenberg Contributing Member • Posts: 814
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?
1

As has undoubtedly been pointed out previously, there is a pretty straightforward trade-off (actually more than one) as the zoom range of a lens increases. Size/weight increases, maximum aperture becomes smaller, and image quality declines.

Do-it-all lenses are ok if convenience trumps everything else.

That said, I think the 18-140mm is still the best overall choice for a travel lens. It is a bit better optically than the longer all-in-one DX lenses and it is not all that large.

If you relish the occasional bird photo as you travel, you either give up some quality (and increase your kit size) by going to the 18-400 kind of lens or else you resign yourself to a two-lens bag.

My own solution to the all-in-one travel photo conundrum is that I (still!) use my trust Coolpix P7800 for my travel photos. It provides 28-200mm equivalent coverage with a terrific lens and in a pocketable package.

Doug Greenberg

 Doug Greenberg's gear list:Doug Greenberg's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P7800 Nikon 1 V2 Nikon D500 Nikon D850 Nikon Z7 +12 more
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum MMy threads