80 200 2.8 d2x focus issues?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by savan_thongvanh, Oct 2, 2009.

  1. Ok, it's here. the much touted 80 200 2.8 AFD, bargain condition from keh.
    Body looks good, there are a couple marks on front element (one scuff right smack dab in the middle) but I hope they're no critical.
    Here's an image I just took. It's much softer than I thought it would be. I'd really appreciate hearing from other owners if this is just the way it is.
    Here are my caveats:
    • i just had time to take a few images over lunch so sample is small
    • i KNOW i'm pixel peeping
    • shot at just beyond what's supposed to be the min focal length
    • Aperture priority, 1/3s f/4.5 200mm iso100
    • focus is on the A in the word apply
    • used tripod
    • used timer
    thanks in advance-
  2. Since you're testing, do what you need to do get a proper exposure (since that looks under exposed). Even with the self timer, you're not avoiding some vibration. Was the tripod on the lens's tripod mount, or on the camera body? Do you have a speedlight you can pop onto your D2X, just to eliminate that really slow shutter speed as a factor while you're checking the lens? Oh, and if you have a remote, try the mirror lock-up instead of the timer.
  3. Thanks for the tips Matt-
    Additionally, I used the mount on the lens, is the the preferred method? I don't have a remote but I'll try it w/ an sb800 tonight when I get home.
  4. Savan.... Use the tripod collar on the lens. It centers the load.
    What tripod and head are you using? Did you use mirror lock-up and your cable release at 1/3s?
  5. Joe-
    Unfortunately I dont' have the cable release. Also, I'm using (what i consider) a high end aluminum tripod (giottos mt9 series) http://giottos.com/MTL-9.htm
  6. If you want to be really happy with that lens, get outside and take some pictures of people with it. 3s exposures of text at closest focus distance in poor light are mainly testing you, not the lens. (I have a copy, and I did the same thing the day I got it, with the same so-so results, so I speak from experience here...)
  7. Pen-
    That's a great tip. I'm suffering from post big ticket paranoia. I'll do exactly that this weekend. I'm glad to hear you did the same thing and are having a good experienc w/ it. I'm hoping for the same (and so are my brides)!
  8. I have a D2X and I'm not giving it up for anything, and my got to lens is an 80-200 AFD. I love the combination. Some additional comments: you need to be square with your subject to make best use of the limited epth of field at that aperture.
    Tripod, remote, careful focus (true of any camera), and appropriate lighting are all good advice, and I'd add that given your subject, white balance is critical too--little room for guess work, since we all know what color the subject is.
    1/3 sec is just way to slow--try putting a weighted beanbag on top of the lens/camera to dampen any vibration.
  9. I have the same experience as Pen but then with my 80-200 AFS.
    Close focussing isn't the strong point of the 80-200.
  10. Yep, a common issue with the 80-200 and cameras newer than the D70 generation. Mine does the same. Close focus feasible only with manual focus, but it's very soft on close-ups anyway.
  11. Bart and Alex-
    Thanks for the insight. I won't be using it much for close focus. What do you consider "close focus" for this lens?
  12. Same problem with AF here, the ability of the D300 to set focus adjustments helps but does not solve the problem completly. Below about 3 mt at 200 mm focus is not reliable. At 135 mm it's fine, and with static subjects focusing at 135 and then zooming to 200 is a solution for me.
    And it is real that the lens at 200mm, close focus, f2.8 is weak, i mean the three conditions together, by just stopping down to 4 or 5.6 things improve dramatically. This is my second 80-200, both two ring version, and both behave the same. I sold the first because it seemed too big and heavy for my use, but recently had the chance to get the second for a good price, so I am an happy owner again, even though it has these limitations + the weight and size have not changed!
    Good luck. Marco

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