Most disliked Nikon lenses ???

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by diana, Dec 11, 2003.

  1. Have you ever purchased (or used) a Nikon lens (or generic) that
    failed to meet your expectations?

    Please share what the lens was and why it didn't meet up to your
  2. The 28 mm f/2.8 non-D AF Nikkor and Series E version were quite bad at wide apertures and corners.

    An AF Nikkor 28-85 f/3.5-4.5 that I had produced quite muddy and soft pictures.

    Other than those, all the Nikkors that I've used have been good in the sense that they could easily be used to get good pictures and the technical quality isn't a primary problem.
  3. In 1997 I was in my first year of photography and sold my N4004s/35-70 f/3.3-4.5 setup. That was going to leave me with only my N70 body, so I ordered the newly released 28-80 f/3.5-5.6D and 80-200 f/4.5-5.6D lenses. At the time they cost $200 each. I was shocked at all the plastic (for $200 each!). But, I've had 8x12 prints made with both lenses and they look great. I still have both lenses - I get them out now and then to remind myself of how light I used to travel.

    I still don't like how much I paid for them, though.
  4. Id say the real "turd" of the old MF line up was the 28MM F3.5.Too dark to see thru in many situations,but slides from it looked ok.
  5. 135mm f/2.8 AIS. I bought this lens as a compromise between a 105mm portrait lens and a 180/200mm proper telephoto because I didn't have much money, but actually it was a bad compromise, too long for portraits and too short for long shots.

    Having said that, a lot of people like this lens and there is nothing wrong with it, it just wasn't the right lens for me. Anyway I sold it for nearly as much as I paid for it secondhand.
  6. Im no expert on Nikors I only have 3, the only thing I dont care for is the feel when
    using the manual focus ring (not just Nikon Im sure) its to sensitive and has a plastic
    feel to the movement

    other than that I think they make some nice glass
  7. 35mm f/2D. Optically excellent, but god only for about 2 month of shooting in between trips to repair shop to clean up oil on aperture blade.
  8. I don't have any real problems with any particular Nikon lenses, except for a 24mm I once owned that was very soft on the edges and a 35-135 AIs that was a flare-factory. I have an early AF 35-70mm f/3.3-4.5 that is very sharp, and I like the Sigma 28-105 which has internal focusing, LD glass, and a non-rotating front element. I had a Nikkor 55mm f/3.5 AI micro and a 105mm AI both of which were awesome.
  9. 85mm f/1.8 AF-D Nikkor. Excellent build and optics, but the low-friction plunger-like configuration of its rear-focus design made it suck in dust at a rate I haven't seen in the other Nikkors I've owned.
  10. 35mm f/2.8 AIS. Very soft lens. It came with my camera in a deal. It might have been a lemon, but the 35mm f/2 or 35mm f/1.4 will deliver the goods which this lens can't.
  11. 70-300G. I swear it made my right eye weaker.
  12. Just about any 28mm or 135mm lens from any manufacturer. You don't gain much over a 35mm lens with a 28mm--better to go to 24mm or 20mm and as someone else said, the 135mm is too short to be a real telephoto and too long for good portraits.
  13. This is too easy. The 35-105 Nikkor. I have had 2 different samples, a MF AIS version and an AF D version. Both dogs, any enlargement over 5 x 7 looks soft. I may actually drive a spike thru the AF D, it is to poor to sell without feeling guilty and I don't want to be tempted by it's convenience.
  14. The 135 mm F1.8, 2.8 and 3.5 are decent lenses in optical quality; but not as well liked due to the "135mm" focal length. In the 1960's; a 135mm was often an amateurs second lens; some dont like the "135mm"; since it branded you as an amateur. I have a 135mm F2.8 Vivitar T4 from the 1960's; and a 1960's vintage 135mm F3.5 Nikkor I got for 35 dollars (in late 1970's used orphan; non-AIable nikkor)<BR><br>The 43mm to 86 zoom of the 1960's was abit soft.<BR><BR>The original 200mm F4 Nikkor was only fair to good wide open; the 180mm F2.8 ED was worlds better wide open.<BR><BR>The original 300mm F4.5 was only fair wide open; todays variant are alot better.<BR><BR>Dittos on the 28mm F2.8 meanin fair at the corners.<BR><BR>The 1960's vintage 35mm F2 of mine is very good; even wide open. I believe these vary in quality; since I have known users who have had poor samples. This is a tolerance production issue. <BR><BR>The 58mm F1.4 was fare wide open.
  15. The worst Nikkor as far as optics that I ever bought was the 24-120 AF-D. I bought it after the glowing review in Popular Photography, but it proved to be lacking for my needs. I am not a snob. I really like my 43-86 zoom which was suppose to be a dog (perfect for people photography when subjects have less than perfect faces) , but the 24-120 will never be mounted on any of my cameras again.

    Two auto-focus primes were both great out of the box, the 35mm f/2.0 and 50mm f/1.4, but both failed mechanically in a very short amount of time. This was not the normal experience for me and Nikkors, and turned me off of the latest incarnations of Nikon glass.

    Today, my "grab and go" gear is all manual focus AI / AIS glass.
  16. Not really a surprise, but a freebie Nikkor 35-70/3.5-4.5 zoom I got somehow (not the 35-70/2.8, which is probably pretty good). Really plasticky, felt like it was made by and for PlaySkool. Annoyingly small focus ring, and the infinity focus was off, you had to back off from maximum to get sharp focus. I'd sell it, but I probably wouldn't earn the Ebay fee out of it...
  17. AF 70-300 f/4~5.6D ED. Need I say more?

  18. I find Kelly Flanigan’s comments about the 135mm lens quite interesting. When I started with my first SLR I wanted a lens that would focus closer than normal so I bought a 55/3.5 Micro Nikkor. This was the early ‘70s and everybody who bought a second lens bought a 135/3.5 or 2.8. I got a good deal on a 135/2.8 and with in 24 hours traded it straight across, no cash, for a 105/2.5. I just wanted to be different. Like as the 135mm was the "standard telephoto" the 28mm was the "standard wide angle." My theory was the 28mm fell between the 24mm and the 35mm so I bought a 24/2.8 and later a 35/2.0.

    I think there is an enduring distaste for the 50mm, 135mm and 28mm simply because they were the normal, standard and standard, i.e. boring. In truth they are what you make of them. I owned a brand-x 28/3.5 for a few months during a school year and shot one of my first published photos with it before dumping it. It was the only wide angle I could afford until I had a summer job. I bought a 135/3.5 twice because it was the only lens longer than 105mm that I could afford.

    Today I own a 28/2.0 AIS and a 135/3.5 AI among others. I’m so much wiser today (or so I surmise).


  19. The 43~86 F3.5 had two versions, the first had 9 elements and the second introduced ~1976 had 11 elements. If the writing is within the filter ring, ir is the old version. It is reputed to be the worst Nikon lens ever and one of the most popular. It ran a little more than the 50mm F1.4. The newer version is quite sharp and is much improved for distortion.

    This shot is with the lens at its sharpest point; but look at the "straight" line wooden rail in the picture.
  20. Resize smaller: 326x500
  21. New version 43~86 zoom, eleven element, zoomed in. Rails look straight in the original print as well, not warped like in older lens.
  22. i have not owned or used that many nikkors to say which is the worst. as for the 135 2.8 is concerned, i like it. it gives me a good working distance when shooting with 68mm of extension, and i am able to shoot nice "street shots" with plenty of room. unlike some of the other "masters" on this forum, i am unable to get a 28mm-35mm to fit my needs. i am just too uncomfortable working so close in many situation. with the 135 i am able to be just out of what i call "the obvious spot".

    $.02 from eddie
  23. I mostly use my lenses wide open, which is why my original 300mm f/4.5 and 55mm f/1.2 aren't with me anymore. Neither lens was very sharp wide open, and I never got the 300mm to work well with a TC. The 55mm was quite good at f/8, but why get a f/1.2 to shoot at f/8? Both were impressive lenses though, the 300mm because it was built like a tank and the 55mm because of the front lens.
  24. I own a couple of lenses which have gotten a bad rap at times, but keep them because they have been good for me.

    The only lens I have 'retired' (aka sold) was my first long lens, a Sigma 170-500mm which really was an OK lens for the price. The replacement was a 600mm f/5.6 AIS prime, which is in a different league altogether, and I knew the zoom would have no more use.
  25. Yep, The 70-300 is crappy. But I still can't understand how it is much better at minimum focus distance than at infinity when used at 300mm.

    The G version ought to be even worse than the ED version

    I sort of like my cheap plastic 28-80. Galen Roswell used to like it also.

    But yes, all this slow zooms are crappy.
  26. The Nikon 85mm tilt and shift lens. Haven't used it on a digital body yet but I could never get a sharp and snappy image on my F100. Sent it back to Nikon who tested it and advised me it met all Nikon tolerances. This lens doesn't even approach the sharpness and clarity of my 85 1.4 at any aperture. I always use a tripod. Oh well, I'll eventually try using it again with a D300.
  27. The 24-85 f/3.5-4.5G-AF lesn that came in my old D100 kit. The distortion at the wide end
    was just laughable.

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