Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

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jshen808
jshen808 Forum Pro • Posts: 16,067
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?
1

Doug Greenberg wrote:

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.

..

Yes, I agree the 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6 lens is a great value (especially when it's on sale).

Another great value lens is the 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6 lens, it's also priced very attractive.

Cheers!

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OP sirhawkeye64 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,778
UPDATE: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?
1

So a little update... I am still planning on getting a DX camera and will likely get the 18-140 partially because there are good used ones for very little money (as many people sell off this kit lens and buy someone else).

I was originally going to trade both of my gen 1 Z's for a single Z II camera (thus leaving me without a backup except for the DX camera) but I ended up keeping one of the gen 1 Z's after all so having an extra lens for the DX DSLR camera isn't as critical anymore.  I'll keep my eye out for a good used 18-140 though.

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calson Forum Pro • Posts: 10,544
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

A D500 is a poor choice as a backup camera for a Z camera or even a FX camera for that matter. When I traveled with a new D850 and my D500 I came to realize that if the D850 had any problems the D500 was not a good backup camera with its DX sensor. I sold the D500 and bought a second D850 camera.

With a Z camera the best backup is another Z camera. Second choice would be a compact camera with a 1" sensor like the Lumix or Canon G series cameras where they have an integrated zoom lens and provide Raw file capture.

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bluzman
bluzman Senior Member • Posts: 1,083
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

calson wrote:

A D500 is a poor choice as a backup camera for a Z camera or even a FX camera for that matter. When I traveled with a new D850 and my D500 I came to realize that if the D850 had any problems the D500 was not a good backup camera with its DX sensor. I sold the D500 and bought a second D850 camera.

It would be helpful if you listed the reasons, if any, for your opinion regarding the D500 other than it being a DX format.

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OP sirhawkeye64 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,778
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

calson wrote:

A D500 is a poor choice as a backup camera for a Z camera or even a FX camera for that matter. When I traveled with a new D850 and my D500 I came to realize that if the D850 had any problems the D500 was not a good backup camera with its DX sensor. I sold the D500 and bought a second D850 camera.

With a Z camera the best backup is another Z camera. Second choice would be a compact camera with a 1" sensor like the Lumix or Canon G series cameras where they have an integrated zoom lens and provide Raw file capture.

The reason I was considering (no longer am) a D500 was it would be my wildlife camera, but also serve as a backup to my Z camera.  I've since decided (at least for now) not to get a D500.

I might just also wait and see what firmware updates Nikon has for the Z7 II in terms of AF improvements.  I alraedy have 2 Z cameras (originally when I made the post, I was going to only have one, but decided to keep one and trade one instead of trading both for one new one).

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ARClark
ARClark Veteran Member • Posts: 4,155
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

calson wrote:

A D500 is a poor choice as a backup camera for a Z camera or even a FX camera for that matter. When I traveled with a new D850 and my D500 I came to realize that if the D850 had any problems the D500 was not a good backup camera with its DX sensor. I sold the D500 and bought a second D850 camera.

I ended up doing the same thing. I didn’t necessarily find the D500 as a poor choice, per se. In my circumstances, I found that the D500’s advantages in AF speed, frame rate and buffer didn’t overcome the inconvenience of having two different formats to contend with. It’s nice having complete interchangeability of the same camera for user settings, lenses, memory cards, etc. There’s just less decision-making, and the D850 has advantages over the D500 for my shooting, especially the wider field of view for shooting active birds and BIF.

With a Z camera the best backup is another Z camera. Second choice would be a compact camera with a 1" sensor like the Lumix or Canon G series cameras where they have an integrated zoom lens and provide Raw file capture.

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1971_M5
1971_M5 Veteran Member • Posts: 7,680
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

Very well stated, Craig.

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OP sirhawkeye64 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,778
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

ARClark wrote:

calson wrote:

A D500 is a poor choice as a backup camera for a Z camera or even a FX camera for that matter. When I traveled with a new D850 and my D500 I came to realize that if the D850 had any problems the D500 was not a good backup camera with its DX sensor. I sold the D500 and bought a second D850 camera.

I ended up doing the same thing. I didn’t necessarily find the D500 as a poor choice, per se. In my circumstances, I found that the D500’s advantages in AF speed, frame rate and buffer didn’t overcome the inconvenience of having two different formats to contend with. It’s nice having complete interchangeability of the same camera for user settings, lenses, memory cards, etc. There’s just less decision-making, and the D850 has advantages over the D500 for my shooting, especially the wider field of view for shooting active birds and BIF.

With a Z camera the best backup is another Z camera. Second choice would be a compact camera with a 1" sensor like the Lumix or Canon G series cameras where they have an integrated zoom lens and provide Raw file capture.

For me it's not that it's a poor choice, but rather I didn't want to spend that much on a wildlife camera and am probably going to go wit ha refurbished D7500 instead, which even compared to a used D500, is still about $300 cheaper. ($800 vs about $1100 for a D500 used).

Plus the D7500 is a bit smaller (and I have smaller hands so that helps too, especially when using larger lenses like a 200-500). But in reality, I decided to try to do some wildlife with my Z7 II first and see as I've seen some pretty convincing shots online of people who supposedly used the original Z bodies (with Firmware v3.0 or later) and got some excellent results, so maybe I don't need a DSLR for the amount of wildlife I plan on on doing (which is basically a time killer right now, as travel is restricted so harder to do travel and landscape, and nobody wants to do group model shoots because of COVID restrictions -- I felt wildlife was one genre that was sort of some interest, and something I could actually do without needing to go anywhere or deal with other people).

In the end, though, if I do end up with a D7500 used at some point, I may just pick up an 18-140 used. Again, it wouldn't be my primariy camera and I probably would never actually use it for anything other than wildlife unless I had a problem with one of my Z bodies (hence it being a backup).

(I actually travelled with a guy who only had one camera body, and unfortunately it stopped working halfway through our landscape trip to Death Valley.  Since then, I always carry a second body of some sort because it's one of those things that if you don't, you will probably end up wishing you had one).  And again, this discussion came up when was considering trading two Gen1 Z bodies for one Z II body but that didn't happen so I no longer really "need" the DX as a backup.

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Bruce Ferjulian
Bruce Ferjulian Regular Member • Posts: 176
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?

Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-70mm F/3.5-4.5 G ED

This lens was part of a kit when I purchased the Nikon D70 new in 2005. It took great pictures while I lived in India. I have since sold the D70 but have kept the lens. I used it on a D2x and still have it. The lens did lock up on me but Nikon fixed it under warranty.

It is not very heavy.

I just checked and you can find more than one on eBay between ( $40 <--> $90 ).

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PHXAZCRAIG
PHXAZCRAIG Forum Pro • Posts: 17,564
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 started seeing less-than-desired sharpness with an 18-200vr on a 10mp D200.   Its flaws would be even more evident on a 24mp camera.

That said, the 18-200 is a pretty decent lens in the 18-135 range, so the 18-140 seems a fine alternative to me.   Need to go more than about 150mm?  Get a second lens.

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jshen808
jshen808 Forum Pro • Posts: 16,067
Re: Good "travel zoom" for Nikon DX Cameras?
1

PHXAZCRAIG 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 started seeing less-than-desired sharpness with an 18-200vr on a 10mp D200. Its flaws would be even more evident on a 24mp camera.

That said, the 18-200 is a pretty decent lens in the 18-135 range, so the 18-140 seems a fine alternative to me. Need to go more than about 150mm? Get a second lens.

..

I bought my Nikon 18-200mm lens to be used with my D40 (6mp) camera.

My copy of the 18-200mm lens did not work well with my D3300 (24mp).

However, my 18-200mm works reasonable well with my D7500 (20mp).

..

The below picture was from my D7500 camera & 18-200mm lens combo.

The jpg image was extracted from the original out-of-camera raw file.

This picture was taken using 200mm at the long end of the lens.

Jpg image extracted from the raw file.

The above picture's exif information.

..

Cheers!

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