Hi! Many of you are power contributors so you may remember my post a few months back (something like 'Nikon 24-70 VR finally!'). As some of you pointed out then, there was a delay with the first shipment at the time, but it did come in about a week ago - a few months after the original order was placed. My post was actually more about my long wait for Nikon to develop a VR version of this lens and I waited years for it to happen; saw lots of posts saying "this year" but that was years ago, so (as an event photographer) I finally gave up waiting and bought the Tamron -- but did not expect much, considering what they were like during the film days; but I figured it would tide me over until Nikon got its act together. What I received in the Tamron earlier this year was nothing short of amazing; for about half the price of the current Nikon model! Needless to say, when the announcement was made about the Nikon release, I was excited to see the difference between them. Knowing I would probably sell the Tamron (only because I am a 'purist'), because how could it possibly be better than the Nikon (lol!). I also mentioned in that post that I would report back on my side by side 'testing' on a D810 -- but prefaced it by noting that I am not a 'tester' by any means and do not get into the minutia when comparing lenses (as mentioned - leave that to those that care ; to me, if the area that I focused is tack sharp and there are no obvious distortions (very minor ones are eliminated with a click of 'lens correction' in PS), then I am satisfied. The Tamron has been an amazing lens for my applications and I have yet to ever think, "I wish I had a Nikon" when capturing a critical shot. It is an incredible lens! (no, I do not work for Tamron . Ok -- so the first few trials that I put a lens through is distortion -- I don't use anything fancy, just my garage wall with horizontal siding and a window with some mullions to ensure no obvious vertical distortion, like pin cushioning, etc. The Tamron was initially fine in this regard at all lengths but I still re-tested it in the same light as the Nikon (of course, some 'distortion' at 24mm -- but that is expected at semi-wide angle). The most obvious difference in this test was that, since I usually stop a lens down by 1/3 stop because I prefer a slightly more contrasty image, the Tamron shows this as an ideal exposure while the Nikon showed it as under-exposed; setting the needle to 'perfect' exposure for the Nikon was much better. I put them both through the lens' ranges and most f-stops, then looked at the resulting images at 100% magnification. Truth be told, although there was a slight variation in tonality - I could not tell the difference between them -- although I would have to say it is possible that the Nikon might even be a hair softer at the focus point (but I would have to look at the images in a much more critical mindset -- which I never do because unless there is a glaring difference, once printed and ready to sell, it would be impossible to discern if it is a great image) -- to me if I can see fine-details, such as every blemish, mold spot, crack in the paint of my aging garage in fine detail -- the lens passes. I know the Tamron sees things that even the human eye at the same distance can not see (and many things on humans that you'd rather not know about -- well, not just the Tamron; all of my images from the D810 no matter the lens, have this ability. So as long as it does this, I'm a happy camper. The Nikon did fine. My next test was in the VR -- again, I could not really see any improvement in the Nikon vs. the Tamron - I could take a sharp image with no support at about a 1/10 of second, about a 1/5 of a second if I leaned my shoulder against a wall with the Nikon. I get similar results with the Tamron. My only complaint, and I may have Nikon check it out because this happened on another Nikon that I purchased and returned: is the VR even working. The images are sharp, so I presume it is -- but with the Tamron and my 70-200 2.8 I can actually see the image 'lock' into place and usually can hear the motor. With this Nikkor, I hear something but rarely see the 'lock-in' through the view-finder. Next I went out in the field and took some scenics -- I purposely did not note which were taken with which lens, but did run them through their paces to some extent. I was hoping when I got back to the computer I would see some that looked good and some that looked great and I could tell the difference between the two. No such luck -- there were some that weren't so good (even though most were taken on a tripod as I normally do for a scenic and a timer release) and that happens some time, and some were great. But both lenses had that anomaly. If I didn't know better I would say Nikon made the Tamron lens (or visa versa - lol!). But of course, that is not possible. I truly could not tell the difference between the images at 100% magnification -- and had to read the image properties just to find out which lens was which. This may not be the case if I scrutinize with a eagle eye, but at first review on a NEC IPS monitor, I could not see the difference between the two lenses. I guess, in summary, I'm disappointed. I've liked the Tamron in all regards, but was hoping to be beyond wow'ed by the Nikon considering the price difference and level of commitment Nikon has to the imaging world. Don't get me wrong, it's a fine lens -- but, at this point (I'll update after I use it on assignment later in the week -- which will test the autofocus, etc) it is on par to the Tamron. Seriously, Nikon, it's one thing competing with Canon -- but Tamron is on your heels as well.