Nikon 18-200 VR or 80-200 f2.8

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by corey, Mar 10, 2007.

  1. I am in the market to purchase a new lens and was wondering if there is anyone who has used both of these lenses and knows them well enough to tell me which will give me a better photograph. I do like the idea of the VR on the 18-200 but is it worth losing the 2.8 from the 80-200? Most important to me is picture quality I want the one that will provide me with sharp detail and an all around high quality photo. thanks in advance for your response. Corey
     
  2. Hi Corey buy a 80 200 2.8 you will love it. I had the 18 200 did not like it to slow.80 200 it is a sharper lens too
     
  3. The 18-200 is WAY better than the 80-200 in the 18-80 range. ;~) Seriously, if you're going to shoot a lot of stuff wider than 80, then the 80-200 will not be the answer for you. What else do you have?
     
  4. The 80-200mm is an awesome lens for the money. It will destroy the 18-200mm in the 80-200mm range. However, you will obviously need something wider to go with it. The 18-200mm is a nice walk around lens, but its slow. If you already have a 18-70mm then the 80-200 compliments the 80-200mm very nicely.
     
  5. In addition to mediocre lens quality, the 18-200VR isn't good for developing photogrpahic skills. It encourages you to manipulate the zoom, rather than use your eyes and feet to frame a picture within a circumscribed range. Honestly, I'd get the 80-200 f2.8 (great glass, with a relatively narrow zoom range) and save up for the Nikon 20mm 2.8 and the Nikon 50mm f1.8 prime lenses Don't others agree?
     
  6. IMHO this is not an either/or situation since the two lenses serve different purposes. Either is capable of producing fine images (assuming lens sample is OK). Far more will depend on your skills at seeing and composing images. I cannot say I agree that the 18-200 will not help develop photographic skills - moving the zoom ring is a perfectly legitimate response to certain situations whereas falling off a cliff-top may not be.
     
  7. It is really remarkable how good the 18 200 is given its 11:1 zoom ratio but at enlargements of 11x14 and up, details are lacking throughout its focal length range at all f stops. I have tried two examples of the 18 200 VR, time to punt on super zooms. The 18 70 is super sharp and goes well with either an 80 200 2.8 or the VR 70 300.
     
  8. The 18-200mm will dominate in quality and features up to 79mm. :)>) You are in a sense comparing an orange to a grapefruit. If you want a walk around lens that will reach to 200mm, then the 18-200mm is the obvious choice. The 80-200mm is a great lens, but is heavy, visually obtrusive, and in some states, considered a defensive weapon. I have and use the 80-200mm and love it. The images are excellent. The speed is good. But it is definitely not the lens you would keep on your camera body all the time. You did not say, which body you are using.
     
  9. "n addition to mediocre lens quality, the 18-200VR isn't good for developing photogrpahic skills." "mediocre"? Not in my or many reviewers opinion. Not top-of-the-line to be sure, but mediocre? I think not. However, it is VERY true that a mega-zoom will not teach you as much about photography as a simple "standard" lens. That used to be a 50. Now it's a 28 or so.
     
  10. The 80-200 is a bit sharper in its range, and it faster. However, the VR makes up for that, even if you have to stop down the 18-200 to 8 or so, you get more of a lense. I'd buy the 80-200 only, if you want to do sport photography, where the 2.8 will help to freeze the action. Note, that the 80-200 is a very bulky lens too!
     
  11. > tell me which will give me a better photograph

    No can do, sorry.
    That'll be you *making* a better photograph, an the lens you use will be facilitating, more or less.
     
  12. The 80-200mm is absolutely technically more capable of giving you far better images if it can be held steady enough or mounted on a tripod. However, though optically inferior, the enormous range of the 18-200mm and VR make it invaluable in low light "grab shot" situations. The 18-200mm is weakest at the long end with my sample, where there is simply no comparison to my 80-200mm. As far as carrying the 80-200mm around; sure it is heavier, but what is the big deal, (now's my chance to be a geezer) I have noticed in my lifetime that people are getting bigger, taller, stronger (smarter?). However, I also observe an almost obsessive/ compulsiveness to select gear based on its comparison to the mass of balsa wood. I am sure some of us remember carrying around a few F or F2 bodies with a gaggle of primes. We actually survived the ordeal without thinking much about it. At least I didn't and I'm no Arnold Schwarzenegger. If your work is important, carry the best gear for the job. It will not kill you. If you decide to purchase the 18-200mm, make sure you examine and test it thoroughly before running off to Europe or shooting your sister's wedding. I was about to post this yesterday when mysteriously, the whole thread disappeared: In my opinion, quality control at Nikon has deteriorated in the last few years. The country manufacturing the Nikon product does not matter, including Japan. Sample variation has reached a deplorable level. When I purchase a new Nikon lens today, I have to check it out thoroughly in the same careful manner that I might examine a used lens. Gone are the days when you could take something Nikon right out of the box and have an uncompromised expectation that it would function properly, or not be defective in some other way. I have come to this conclusion from personal experience.
     
  13. My 18-200 literally fell apart in my hands on a recent trip to Antarctica. 7 weeks to be repaired at Nikon. The glass is great. The build decidedly consumer.
     
  14. I really dont think that a comparison between the18-200 VR to a Pro Lens like the 80-200 F2.8 is valid. The 18-200 is a decent if pricy consumer lens. The pricing will give the illusion to some that it is some way pro build quality. It is not. I use mine as a general purpose lens; but the performance and build is compromised by its range. Nothing wrong with that; but Its not going to stand up to the demands of the professional. David Roses comment "My 18-200 literally fell apart in my hands on a recent trip to Antarctica. 7 weeks to be repaired at Nikon. The glass is great. The build decidedly consumer? is a little unreasonable. To buy a consumer lens for a tough assignment then complain that his consumer lens falls apart shows that the user has not thought seriously about the purposes his equipment was being used for. By using the 18 -200. I have some unexpected shots which I would never have obtained if I?d had to change lenses quickly . For the vast majority of users; the zoom range and VR and relatively light weight will justify their purchase. The pursuit of ultimate photographic quality will always involve some sort of compromise. Whether It be having a large weight of camera gear to carry around, or a bigger credit card bill for the purchases. Well camera gear is made to be used; so if lightweight equipment such as the 18-200 VR produces a good image; then that is what is really important. The camera is only a tool; it?s the vision of the photographer which is the most important thing.
     
  15. Rene said: "The 80-200 is a bit sharper in its range, and it faster. However, the VR makes up for that, even if you have to stop down the 18-200 to 8 or so, you get more of a lense. I'd buy the 80-200 only, if you want to do sport photography, where the 2.8 will help to freeze the action. Note, that the 80-200 is a very bulky lens too!" My reply: Sorry, VR is not a substitute for wide open -- you can't freeze even a relatively slow moving subject (not sports, just a child playing for instance) with your camera set to f/8. Another issue is AF, less light reaching the AF sensors means more hunting and more missed shots. Also, I would say that I don't consider the 80-200/2.8 "very bulky"; but my girlfriend does. Now I have considered getting an 18-200 someday, along with a D40 or D40x -- but it's not for me; it's for my girlfriend.
     
  16. Thanks to all of you for your reply, I have been away from my computer for the past week and I am sorry that I have not replied to the questions asked of me. I am shooting with the nikon f100 and am purchasing the d200. I have a 28-70 2.8 lens now but with most of my shoots I will have my film and digital camera with me so the advantage to the 18-200 for me would simply be not useing the f100 as much as I probably should. My thought was that if I went with the 80-200 then it would be mounted to one, and the 28-70 to the other. I am looking for the sharpest and best lens for picture quality, I dont care about the weight. As a matter of fact, I believe that you can usually tell the quality of the product from its wieght. Now before I get a ton of responses from that, my point is that the heavier the lens USUALLY the more metal and stronger the parts inside which will USUALLY give you a lot more shooting time with it. I also understand the appeal of a light weight lens. Now I realize that the photographers eye is very important in the quality of the picture but if had the 18-200 at the 105 range and the 80-200 105 range and shot the same picture under the same light at the same f stop which lens would I be more likely to have a better picture from. I believe that most of you believe it would be the 80-200 f2.8. Thanks again for all your replies. Corey
     

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