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Nikkor 70-200mm VR review roundup
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news posted on October 29, 2006

 
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Nikkor 70-200mm vr lensThis new lens is being developed as the first truly compact, lightweight AF-S Zoom-Nikkor lens to offer the VR (Vibration Reduction) function. The lens is targeted at professional and advanced amateur photographers to whom the advantages of high optical performance and high speed are top priorities. In this review roundup we have 11 reviews of Nikkor 70-200VR lens

By Thom has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"I've saved the most obvious performance questions for last. One of the first things I get asked about this lens is "does the VR work?" I've postponed discussing this aspect of performance because I need this lens to work without VR before I can even consider using it at slow shutter speeds or in moving vehicles. As should be obvious by now, even without VR this would be a remarkable lens. And yes, the VR works. Rather than me describing how good it is, let me give you a recent example. I had this lens with me at my 2003 California desert workshops. While we were waiting for one the students to get back out of the slot canyon in Anza Borrego State Park, one of my other students saw that I had the 70-200mm on my D100 and asked: "does the VR really work?" I just handed him the camera, showed him where the VR switch was, and said "try it." Now the portions of the shots that follow aren't examples of compositional greatness or even perfect sharpness, but it'll give you a quick idea of just how much the VR system can improve handheld results (and we were getting blasted by wind gusts, so hand holding was definitely a challenge and the Ocotillo bushes were moving in the wind)."
Read whole article here

Camera Hobby has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"For the film photographer, the decision to upgrade to the VR lens on a purely optical basis is hard to make because the AF-D lens still acquits itself quite well and it betters the VR lens for controlling flare; however, for the digital photographer, the choice is a bit easier in favour of the VR lens. Except for the issue with flare, the 70-200mm VR lens is a worthy champion for Nikon in the fast aperture, telephoto-zoom lens contests and I look forward to many years of productive use with this lens from weddings to landscapes to portraits among many other uses."
Read whole article here

Digital Images has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"What Nikon has provided us with in the 70-200mm f/2.8 AFS/VR, it’s first lens to use both the AFS Silent-Wave Motor and Vibration-Reduction technology, is an extremely flexible lens that offers a wide range of apertures yielding top-grade results over an extremely useful range of focal lengths with very fast focus acquisition and extremely precise tracking capabilities, that will also allow capturing sharp, handheld images at shutter speeds which would normally require a solid tripod. The lens works beautifully with the TC-14e teleconverter, increasing the flexibility of the lens to offer the user a 100mm-280mm f/4 zoom with high-speed focusing and tracking and VR. The AFS/VR + TC-14e combination is nearly-equal or equal to the 300mm f/4 AFS, with faster focusing and tracking of subjects – even those moving directly towards the camera. By stopping the lens down one stop you can be assured of excellent image quality at all focal lengths, and the performance wide open is admirable. This is one of the few zooms I have used that I wouldn’t be reluctant to use wide open, and with the capabilities of the VR to allow for sharp shots at very slow shutter speeds this lens can be used in conditions that would normally require a set of very fast primes to approach the quality it can yield with ease. Assuming the photographer uses good hand-held technique, results can be achieved that cannot be duplicated even using the fastest primes (I wouldn’t dream of trying a 1/6 second shot at 200mm without VR or a tripod). While the lens is expensive, it allows the photographer to get the shot to a high standard of quality in an extremely wide variety of circumstances. This lens is highly recommended – if you can afford the price you should consider it."
Read whole article here

Natur Fotograf has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"This addition to the stabilised stable of Nikkors has been long awaited. Without doubt the wait did deliver an excellent lens with a lot of positive surprises, besides some (likely unavoidable) negative traits. The important point here is that you get a package crammed with optical and technological achievements, which combine to make this lens a highly versatile tool for virtually all photographers. This lens may be expensive but it certainly offers the results you've paid for. Its poor performance for back-lit scenes is a draw-back only if you cannot work around this issue, so provided the photographer is up to the task, the VR lens still delivers. The attractive bokeh will endear the 70-200 VR to its users as well."
Read whole article here

Grays of Westminster(www.graysofwestminster.co.uk) has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"The AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-200mm f2.8G IF-ED, which will no doubt replace the current AF-S version in due course, will also see the legendary retro-compatibility of all professional type Nikkor lenses come to an end, because G specification types have no aperture ring. They can only be used on the F65, F80, F100, F5, D100, and D1 series cameras. In a recent meeting with Mr. Tetsuro Goto, Head of Research and Development for Nikon SLR cameras, I asked if all future professional specification Nikkors would follow suit and be of the G-type. He explained that the decision to adopt the G specification for the VR 70-200mm lens was based purely on engineering reasons, because Nikon’s priority was to produce a lightweight, compact lens, and that there was no policy to dispense with a conventional aperture ring in future lenses provided it fitted the design criteria."
Read whole article here

Keiko has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"Then sometimes you don't want to use your tripod for convenience purposes. At those times, VR becomes a life saver. For in-flight bird shots, VR is less of a need. In fact, I turn it off routinely to avoid using up too much battery power. The bottom line is I don't use VR all the time. Only when I need it. The lens performs admirably with the TC-14e effectively giving you a 105-280mm f/2.8 lens. Combine it with a D-series camera, you're getting a 157-420mm f/2.8 lens. That's an extremely capable combo in a realtively small package. I usually have it ready to go with TC-14e in my camera belt when shooting birds."
Read whole article here

Moose Peterson has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"The 70-200VR has an Active VR mode. I have to tell you that when I read the description for this mode in the IB, I was skeptical. The IB says this about this mode “The vibration reduction mechanism reduces camera shake when taking pictures from a moving vehicle.” I guess the paparazzi has Nikon’s ear! I couldn’t for the life of me figure out the need for this mode except perhaps it meant to say boat and not vehicle. Anyway, I had to see for myself if active mode really worked. While in Kansas, we flushed up a Golden Eagle that was perched beside the road. Driving at 10mph on a Kansas dirt road at 200mm, I captured the photo above. While photographically nothing special, you will notice the image is sharp. That’s impressive!"
Read whole article here

SLR Gear has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"Sharpness is very good overall, although things soften a little at 200mm, wide open. (They're sharper at 105mm and below.) The sweet spot is fairly broad, ranging from f/4-5.6 from 70 to 105mm, and from f/5.6-f/8 at 200mm. Chromatic aberration is also quite good over the full range. At 70mm, worst-case CA is a little high wide open, but the average value is fairly low, indicating distortion that doesn't creep too far into the frame. At 200mm, CA is pretty low across the board. CA actually appears to be at its worst at roughly 100mm, at apertures of f/8 and lower. Vignetting and geometric distortion are both very low, the former reaching a maximum of only about 1/3 of a stop at 200mm wide open, but over most of the lens' range being less than 1/10 stop. Worst-case distortion ranges from a bit over 0.2% barrel at 70mm, to about 0.3% pincushion at 200mm, very good performance for a zoom lens."
Read whole article here

Wild life Photo has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"At nearly $1,700.00, the 70-200VR is not inexpensive. However, it is well worth the investment if you shoot any type of action where you need to handhold your lens or plan to shoot from your car or a boat. Whether it's photographing Bald Eagles in flight or White-tailed Deer running across a field, the Nikkor 70-200f2.8VR AF-S lens has earned an honored spot in camera bag. This is one heck of a fun lens to shoot with!"
Read whole article here

Photozone has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"Thanks to a silent-wave AF drive and a VR (Vibration Reduction) mechanism the Nikkor AF-S 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED VR is a worthy improvement over the previous high-speed tele zooms made by Nikon. However, these improvements also come at cost of a substantially higher price tag and increased dimensions/weight. Performance-wise the results are very good but not superior to the old AF 80-200mm f/2.8ED. The center resolution is very good to excellent but the borders suffer a little at large aperture settings at the extreme ends of the zoom range. Possibly these findings may originate in a centering defect that was present in the tested sample. Vignetting, distortions as well as CAs are well controlled. The mechanical quality of the lens is exceptionally high and it's a joy to use this lens."
Read whole article here

Nikon Gear  has reviewed Nikkor 70-200 VR f/2.8G IF-ED lens and wrote:
"The lens auto-focussing is outstanding, particularly on the newer pro-spec D2 series cameras. I have shot rugby, motorsport, surfing and live performances using this lens and have been very happy with my results. It's particlarly sharp when wide open and that's why I like it. There's nothing more frustrating than spending a lot of money on a fast-aperture lens only to discover later on that its no good wide open. Fortunately that's not the case in this instance."
Read whole article here

Nikkor 70-200mm VR lens


Press release:
Nikon Corporation is pleased to announce the development of a new lens, the AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED.

This new lens is being developed as the first truly compact, lightweight AF-S Zoom-Nikkor lens to offer the VR (Vibration Reduction) function. The lens is targeted at professional and advanced amateur photographers to whom the advantages of high optical performance and high speed are top priorities. The lens not only features Nikon’s exclusive built-in SWM (Silent Wave Motor) for ultra-fast, ultra-quiet operation, but also employs Nikon’s VR system which minimizes blur caused by camera shake. The VR system allows the use of slow shutter speeds in dimmer conditions. There is also Active VR mode available, which compensates for the intense vibrations experienced when shooting from a moving motor vehicle, ship or helicopter. This lens delivers superior optical performance thanks to the incorporation of five ED glass elements and high-grade Nikon Super Integrated Coating. The lens also offers a fast constant maximum aperture of f/2.8 at all focal lengths. It is ideal for professional-level photographic needs.

AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED Major Features

 -  70-200mm G-type high-power zoom lens (no aperture ring); 105-300mm equivalent with D1-series and D100 digital SLR
 -  VR operation offers the equivalent of using a shutter speed 3 stops faster
 -  Two VR modes are available; Normal and Active
 -  ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass elements minimize chromatic aberration, provide higher resolution and superior contrast
 -  Nikon’s exclusive SWM for swift autofocusing with superior accuracy and ultra-quiet operation
 -  The rounded diaphragm opening (9 blades) makes out-of-focus elements appear more natural
 -  New cosmetic design identical to current AF-S Nikkor lenses
 -  Resistance to water drops equivalent to that of F5
 -  Lightweight and compact design that fits nicely in users’ hands
 -  Light, rigid magnesium die-cast
 -  M/A mode allows rapid switching between autofocus and manual even during AF servo operation, with virtually no time lag
 -  High-grade Nikon Super Integrated Coating offers superior color reproduction and minimizes ghost and flare
 -  Internal Focusing (IF) design for smoother focusing and great body balance
 -  Flower-shaped Lens Hood HB-29 provided
 -  Lens Case CL-M2 provided
 -  Detachable tripod mounting foot provided
 -  Black, light-gray versions are available


AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED Specifications
Focal length
70mm to 200mm

Maximum aperture
f/2.8

Lens construction
21 elements in 15 groups

Picture angle
34°20’-12°20’ (22°50’-8° with D1-series and D100 digital SLR)

Focus distance
1.4m (MF)/1.5m (AF) to infinity

Max. reproduction ratio
1/5.6 at 1.4m (MF); 1/6.1 at 1.5m (AF)

Aperture
f/2.8 to f/22(70mm)

Attachment size
77mm

Dimensions
Approx. 87mm dia. x 215mm (3.4 in. dia. x 8.5 in.)

Weight
Approx. 1,430g (50.4 oz.) (with tripod mounting foot)

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