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Old 11-09-2008   #1
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Question Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR?

Hi guys!

I have two days to decide which lens to get before I take off to the provinces to take some once in a lifetime shots. I just recently sold my lenses (Nikkor 18-55 VR and 55-200 VR), and I am trying to decide whether I should get the Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR.

My lens dealer tells me that I should go with the 18-105 because the quality is a lot better than the 18-200. He even tells me that the 18-200 Nikkors are "crap". Maybe because the 18-105 uses newer technology, but I really do like the range. He tells me that if I wanted range then I should get the 18-105 VR plus the 70-200 non-VR.

I mostly do hand-held shots (I'm too lazy to carry around a tripod), and although I did not get a chance to test my 55-200 VR much (I sold it some time ago), I am certain VR would be valuable to me especially at the end of the range. I like taking super long range shots, papparazi style. Also, I hate having to switch lenses. I wanted the 18-200 VR as my walk-around lens, so I can take really quick chance shots I would otherwise miss if I had to switch lenses.

What really concerns me though is the fact that the 18-200 VR is way too expensive for a "consumer" level lens. Is the extra 95mm worth the hefty price tag?

Appreciate your help and advice!

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Old 11-09-2008   #2
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Default Re: Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR?

The only thing I can tell you is that you did mention this trip is a once in a Lifetime. If you can afford the better lens then go with it. That other lens, can it be used with a Tele Converter? My 70-300VR f:/4.5-5.6 can Not so I am stuck with a slow piece of Glass. It does take good images, its just not fast enough for me. It is sharp, but also again not sharp enough for my tastes.
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Old 11-10-2008   #3
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Default Re: Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR?

In my opinion...If you want "range" go with the 18-200VR. I think you should try each lens and then you will know which you want, if thats possible. Google is your friend for reviews of these lenses, and I would not base my options on the opinion of one lens supplier...
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Old 11-10-2008   #4
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Default Re: Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR?

As my buddy Ken would say

"It's a miracle! I bought mine in November 2005 and love it. It's replaced an entire bag of lenses. All I bring anywhere is my 18-200mm, and maybe my 12-24mm for 99% of everything I shoot."


Which Camera do you use?
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Old 11-10-2008   #5
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Default Re: Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Not4wood View Post
The only thing I can tell you is that you did mention this trip is a once in a Lifetime. If you can afford the better lens then go with it. That other lens, can it be used with a Tele Converter? My 70-300VR f:/4.5-5.6 can Not so I am stuck with a slow piece of Glass. It does take good images, its just not fast enough for me. It is sharp, but also again not sharp enough for my tastes.
Unfortunately the better lenses are all way out of budget for me

Quote:
Originally Posted by R. House View Post
In my opinion...If you want "range" go with the 18-200VR. I think you should try each lens and then you will know which you want, if thats possible. Google is your friend for reviews of these lenses, and I would not base my options on the opinion of one lens supplier...
I tried that but due to high demand my dealer does not have any demo units for the 18-200 VR

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eero Makela View Post
As my buddy Ken would say

"It's a miracle! I bought mine in November 2005 and love it. It's replaced an entire bag of lenses. All I bring anywhere is my 18-200mm, and maybe my 12-24mm for 99% of everything I shoot."


Which Camera do you use?
Yup, I saw his review, and I'm almost sold. However, Mr. Thom Hogan does not share Ken's enthusiasm. I even e-mailed him about it. Let me share with you you his response:
Quote:
The 18-200mm, like most superzooms, isn't really 200mm at most focus distances. The closer you get, the less the focal range, down to about 135mm. I'd also say that while it is a decent performer, it's probably the worst performer of the 18-xx bunch. I've grown to like it less over time. I haven't used the 18-105mm enough yet to form a real opinion of it, but my initial reaction is favorable.

--
Thom Hogan, writer/photographer
Author, Complete Guides to the Nikon cameras (19 and counting)

www.bythom.com <http://www.bythom.com> <http://www.bythom.com>
This was all too technical for me, especially this part:

Quote:
The 18-200mm, like most superzooms, isn't really 200mm at most focus distances. The closer you get, the less the focal range, down to about 135mm.
So I asked him for further explanation. Here are his responses:

Quote:
If you focus the 18-200mm at infinity, it is 200mm. Focus it at the closest distance, it's ~135mm. This is a typical design shortcut used on Superzooms (>8x zoom range) and has been for over 20 years.
Quote:
I’m saying that even though it is marked as being 200mm, it is NOT when you focus closer than infinity.
Even with those explanations, it's still all too technical to me. I haven't been into photography for very long. Can anyone explain it in layman's terms? I would very much appreciate it.

As a follow-up, I wonder how Mr. Ken Rockwell would react to this: http://photo.net/nikon-camera-forum/00PRyw
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Old 11-10-2008   #6
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Default Re: Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR?

I have been very pleased with the 18-200 VR. It is my "workhorse" lens, and until recently it is always on the camera. I recently purchased the 28-300 VC from Tamron, and have been generally satisfied with it except for the "AF hunting". II can not advise on the 18-105 VR, but if a single lens zoom with range is the real issue, you will not be happy with the 18-105.

If price point is an issue, I would suggets a few good alternatives...

the new 18-270 VC from Tamron (a little cheaper than Nikon 18-200, but with more reach)

18-200 Tamron Non-VC (VR)
18-200 Sigma Non-OS (VR)

That being said, I will probably never sell the 18-200 unless Nikon comes out with an 18-300 VR with the relatively same small "footprint".

Jeff
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Old 11-11-2008   #7
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Default Re: Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR?

I have the D90 and im not sure im sold on the sharpness of the 18-105. Since my computer at home is down, I dont have access to PS right now, so this is a screenshot of an image. But its straight from the camera.




Now, this was shot on fine jpg at large size. This is just a portion of the full size and I just wanted to test the focus sharpness of the lens. Focused on the bird and the sign.

105 focal length
1/250th with VR on
ISO 200
F/5.6
WB set to direct sunlight

What are peoples opinions of the sharpness on this? Does it just look a bit unsharp to me due the the large size, or would you truly say its unsharp?
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Old 11-11-2008   #8
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Default Re: Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR?

Here is another shot that I let photobucket shrink. The previous was just too large at 4.4mb

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Old 11-11-2008   #9
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Default Re: Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR?

Hmmm. The bird photo looks disappointing. It is a screenshot of a screenshot though, so maybe the original photo looks better. The cat photo looks acceptable to me.

Off-topic question: is that a maine coon?
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Old 11-11-2008   #10
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Default Re: Nikkor 18-105 VR vs 18-200 VR?

I honestly dont know. It was a stray. Its mother was a short hair, but all 4 of her litter are like chloe here.

Heres the original image. Photobucket shrank it as it was originally a 5mb file



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