best wide-angle zoom for D200?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by leonard_forte|1, Oct 27, 2007.

  1. I'd like to get a good wide-angle zoom for my nikon d200. The nikon 17-55 f/2.8
    seems too pricey particularly when I read that there is distortion at the wide
    end. Is there such a zoom that is sharp at all apetures and has little
  2. Sigma 10-20. Can't beat it for the money.
  3. The best cost the most money even if distortion is included.
  4. I'd like something longer than 20mm.
  5. What's more important, here - the distortion, the speed, or the budget? You might seriously consider saving some money and goind with the 18-70 for when you happen to need that shorter length. But it's slower than the 17-55, of course. And a quarter of the price. And way more than a quarter of the sharpness. Perhaps a little more about your shooting style/subjects? A "good wide-angle zoom," alas, leaves lots of room for interpretation without knowing your priorities a little more clearly.
  6. I'd like a good quality "all-around" lens or walk about lens. I dont mind spending a bit more for better quality I'm not sure the nikon 17-55 is worth its price.
  7. I should mention that I have a 24-85 f/2.8 lens which is quite good but again not wide open and not at the lower end of the zoom.
  8. The 17-55 will, from all accounts, make you deliriously happy. NO zoom has "no
    distortion" at the wide end, and few probably have much less than the 17-55.

    An alternative would be the 17-35mm. Because it's a full-frame lens, the distortion at the
    wide end on a DX sensor is remarkably well controlled, but you'd be switching to your
    24-85 a lot, and I'm guessing you don't want to do that.

    Either way, what you have now is just not wide enough. How will you use this lens? The
    17-55 is FAR too heavy for extensive "carrying around", say hiking or something. For that
    you'd REALLY want to consider the 18-70.
  9. I would use the lens for travel, events where my 50mm is a bit too long. I would use it when I want to carry only one lens. I wol.d probably not use it for hiking. However I didnt find the 17-55 "too" heavy when I tried it out in the camera store.
  10. 12-24 f4 DX
  11. What do you consider wide? I am using a 18/70 plus I am amassing some primes.

    BTW, they all distort so accept it. PTLens will fix it.
  12. OK, I have a Tokina 12-24, nikon 50mm f/1.4, nikon 24-85mm 2.4-4 and nikon 85mm f/1.4, and nikon 80-200 f/2.8
    Ideally I'd be looking for 1 17(or 18)-80mm. I like the Sony 16-80mm zoom range for the Sony alpha. Nikon doesnt make anything close to that. Maybe I should switch over to Sony but reluctant since I've made the investment in all these lenses for nikon.
  13. Leonard, the 17-55mm f/2.8 DX lens is an outstanding lens. It is certainly the most distortion-free wide-to-short-tele pro zoom on the market for Nikon DX DSLRs.

    The barrel distortion at the wide end isn't that pronounced- you probably won't notice it in most images. The only times I see wide distortion with this lens are when I try to square up straight lines in an image- i.e. buildings.

    When wide angle distortion is visable, it is largely correctable in Photoshop or other imaging programs. I don't often notice the wide-end distortion- I can't remember the last time I did lens distortion correction with a 17-55mm image in Pshop.
  14. Thank You Eric (and others). These discussions help me in making decisions. I wish I could use the sony 16-80mm on the d200. That zoom range wold probably do for 80-90% of my shooting. I will certainly consider the 17-55. I just dont like the price :(
  15. Have you looked at the sigma 17-70 2.8-4 or the sigma 18-50 2.8 or the Tamron 17-50 2.8. Tokina also makes a slightly more expensive 16-50 2.6. I think they are all pretty good lenses and not quite as expensive as the Nikkor.
  16. My vote is for the 10-20... you have all the other bases covered. Put it on your camera, walk around the store and take some pictures... Fantastic!!! IMHO less distortion then nikon 12-24 and tamron 11-17 out of camera.
  17. There's also a Sigma 17 - 70mm f/2.8 - 4.5 that hasn't been mentioned yet.

    Don't have one, but to the extent it offers some distortion, I guess that must be weighed against the wallet distortion caused by the pro-level Nikkor zoom.

    If this has to be a fast lens, then Tamron and Sigma also offer f/2.8 constant aperture zoom lenses, the Tamron at 17 - 50mm and the Sigma at 18 - 50mm.

    From what I read, both are good lenses -- again, however, not in the same league as the 17 - 55 f/2.8 Nikkor, as to size, weight, build, optical quality ... or price.
  18. Leonard, I'd note one other thing- any wide-to-short-tele zoom made for a DX DSLR will show some barrel distortion on the wide end. These lenses start at 17mm or 18mm and you just aren't going to get a zoom that starts that wide that is perfectly rectilinear.

    I'd note that when I was shooting with a 28-70mm f/2.8 AFS lens on an F5, distortion at the wide end of the zoom was less pronounced- after all, the wide end of the zoom was only 28mm. While the 17-55mm f/2.8 zoom is a worthy DX replacement for the 28-70mm f/2.8 AFS lens, in my experience, the 17-55mm inherently exhibits a little more barrel distortion at 17mm than the 28-70mm exhibited at 28mm.

    One big plus with the 17-55mm- the wide-angle distortion is mostly-correctable barrel distortion. It could be worse- for instance, with my old 20mm f/2.8 AFD lens on a FF SLR, shooting architecture, I'd get a little moustache distortion along the edges of the frame, which was not correctable in Pshop.
  19. I always tho that the 17-55mm was overpriced until I bought is the ONLY zoom I kept... AWESOME lens, built quality, AF speed and picture quality.
  20. The 18-55 will give you virtually the same image quality as the 17-55 at a fraction of the price. If you need a fast lens, you will probably need to go with a third party lens.

    Distortion is easily corrected through software with programs like DXO and Bibble (there are many others).
  21. 18-70. It is sharp, takes knocks well, and seems to be the perfect zoom range for you. I have published hundreds of picures taken with one. If a few more bucks works there is no better "walking around" lens than the 18-200 AFS-vr.

    Don't worry so much about distortion. PS will fix it for you if you even notice it. And most of the time you won't.
  22. Some of the posts make me wonder whether a clear distinction is always being made between the 'distortion' of things like pincushion and barrel distortion and the perspective changes that are inevitable with a wide lens. The latter is often called 'distortion' but is not a result of a flaw in the lens.

    In any case, I'll second the recommendation of a Sigma 10-20mm. It's got little barrel distortion compared to many lenses at this focal length, and it is nicely rectilinear (not a fisheye). The extra 7mm makes a big difference at this end. The Sigma fits nicely in a 'tool kit' with lenses starting close to 'Normal' range and up to telephoto.
  23. I have the Nikon AF 24-85mm f2.8-4 D Macro lens on a D70s and find it to be an
    excellent walk around lens, though a little big for some people. I have been considering
    the Tokina 16-50mm f2.8 for the wide angle and speed, but hate to give up the 1:2 macro
    of the Nikon. I will shoot close ups often enough, which makes me stick to the Nikon.
    Check out these shots:
  24. 12-24 Nikon is a pretty good deal.
  25. 18-70 DX and D200 = great budget priced combo
    17-55 DX and D200 = brilliant more expensive combo
    12-24 DX and D200 = awesome combo that also costs $$

    I have shot a lot with all 3 above and have found that I got what I'd paid for. If you are travelleing O.S. go for the cheaper 18-70 DX maybe the best value lens for the $$ I have used (and I took it O.S. on travels) If you fork out for the 17-55 DX I doubt if you will have any residual regrets on either price or image re-production.
  26. I have a Tamron 17-50 2.8 (ATX pro DX whatever). I bought it for 300 euros on a trip in Taiwan. It is an excellent lens, cheap, light, low CA, low distortion, cheap, very very sharp, and the bokeh is very nice. Since I put it on my Canon, I don't even bother taking my 28/2.8 and 50/1.8. Travelling light is very cool. Tamron and Tokina are making a massive come-back in lens quality.
  27. Dont worry about distortion on the Nikon 17/55 its not significant. The Sigma 10-20 is an amazing lens for the price. Mine has very slight pincushion distortion. I prefer it to The 10.5 nikon and its much better then the old Sigma 12-24 which has minimal distortion but needs to be stopped down to F11. I will still keep the 12-24 in case I go full frame in the future, the others are DX
  28. why do folks keep recommending the nikon 12-24 and sigma 10-20? leonard already has the tokina 12-24 and wants a wide zoom that's less expensive than the nikon 17-55.

    my recommendations would be:
    tamron 17-50 SP (have this; very happy with it)
    sigma 18-50 EX
    tokina 16-50 AT-X

    the 18-70 does cover more range but is not as sharp as the tamron.
    since you also have the 85 and a 24-85 i wouldn't worry about the 50-70 range. what you need is the wider end.
  29. Leonard I too have a D200 and have gone through similar debate over which lens in this range would suit my needs. Looking at the lenses you mention you already own and your consideration about cost the 17-35 AFS may be an option if you could find one second hand like I did. If you're interested in this lens on a D200 please feel free to read my review at the following link: All the best.
  30. I wish I could use the sony 16-80mm on the d200. That zoom range wold probably do for 80-90% of my shooting.
    Wouldn't the Nikon 18-70 then be quite close to your desires? It's a relatively inexpensive lens with a reasonable range and quality well beyond it's modest price (course, it's no 17-35 or 17-55).

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