lightweight nikon lenses

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by jonsjons, Jun 17, 2009.

  1. i am looking to pick up a very lightweight lens to supplement my tokina 11-16; i have a nikon 16-85 that usually fulfills this role, but i want something extremely lightweight to replace the 16-85 on hikes. the majority of my shots on these outings are with the tokina, but i do want to have another option for more normal focal length shots.
    so far, the options i've come up with are:
    • nikon 50mm f/1.8; 154 grams. i already own this one, but a little long on dx.
    • nikon 35mm f/1.8 dx; 200 grams. might be nice to own if i can find one.
    • nikon 18-55mm, non-vr; 210 grams. obviously more versatile than the first terms of focal length.
    most of the shots taken will be on a tripod, stopped down to about f/8, so speed isn't much of an issue. at this aperture would the 18-55 be competitive with the other two in terms of image quality? i would even be willing to focus manually if there is a lightweight mf lens in the normal range worth considering. anyone know of any? thanks.
  2. oh, just to clarify - i'd consider third party lenses as well.
  3. Can't beat the 45/2.8P, only 120g and 17mm long. But it's no longer available new, and has gotten rather expensive at over $500. The older iterations are less expensive.
  4. The Nikon 18-70 DX is lighter than the 16-85 is inexpensive and would be a great lens for what you are talking about.
  5. The Nikon 18-70 DX is lighter than the 16-85 is inexpensive and would be a great lens for what you are talking about.
  6. The 35 would be freakin' perfect.
  7. I recently went through a similar search. I wanted the best compact lenses I could find, money was not a consideration. I wanted lenses for my travel bag that were light, compact, very versatile, and gave good image quality. I see single focal lenses such as 30mm f1.4 and 50mm f1.4 as special purpose lenses, not very versatile. I ended up buying the Nikons 18-55mm VR and 55-200mm VR. As a bonus they are cheap if I lose or destroy them on a trip. The 18-55mm VR is a great performer. No, they aren't fast, but that's the cost of light, versatile & compact. The other great thing about this pair is that they take the same filter size. I use a polarizer and Canon 500D macro attachment on them, and the 52mm fits both. I've very happy with these two lenses as my lightweight combo, and I am picky. The 18-55mm VR has low CA, low distortion, and the VR works. It just isn't fast. For what you specified, I think it's nearly perfect. I too have the Tokina 11-16mm f2.8 BTW, and love it.

    Kent in SD
  8. Have a look at the Nikon AF 28-70 f/3.5-4.5D its small, light and at f8/f11 is a pretty good performer. You can find a test on
  9. I have used all three Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 DX (I, II and VR) versions and have the 50mm f/1.8D and I must agree with Kent. For your use, mostly used on tripod on f/8, the 18-55 is the most versatile of the three and in that sense the best choice. The primes have their obvious limits and at f/8 there is no noticeable difference in IQ compared with 50mm f/1.8D as far as I can tell (but ymmv of course, I haven't conducted any scientific testing or done any exact comparison shots on them, just used my eye and modest pixel peeping on existing photos in my hard drive). So with the use you described I would go with Nikon 18-55mm: cheap, good IQ, very usable focal length range, very light and quite small size.
  10. I agree with Janne
  11. thanks everyone; it looks like the 18-55 will indeed do the job...and it's nice that it costs so little. perhaps i will see if i can snag on on ebay...

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