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Thread: Nikkor 70-200 F4

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    Super Moderator NEF.D90's Avatar
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    Nikkor 70-200 F4

    I heard someone say the other day that they though the F4 VR version was actually sharper than the F2.8 VR1.
    What do you think about the 70-200 F4 VR I?
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    Administrator Aloicious's Avatar
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    the F4 version is a great lens. I guarantee that it's sharper than the 2.8 VRI, but probably not the 2.8 VRII. the problem with the 70-200 VRI lens is that it was made before Nikon introduced FX bodies so the performance is noticeably softer at the edges than at the center on FX bodies...on DX it is a excellent lens all around. but it does show flaws on FX, which is one reason they came out with the VRII version which is optically better all around.

    The 70-200 F4 however is a new lens, newer than the f2.8 VRII even...the F4 lens is a great lens, I hear nothing but good things about it. it actually uses a newer version of the Vibration Reduction (VRIII) which gives some benefit over the 2.8 versions of the VR system...above that the 70-200 f4 will be smaller and lighter to carry around. and from what I see it gives great optical performance even all the way open at f4 on both DX and FX even out to the corners...however, the drawbacks of the F4 lens is mainly that it's f4, so if you need to go faster than f4 you're out of luck, which can be a bummer if you're shooting in low light, or want to use it as a portrait lens for bokeh performance (though the f4 is probably good, the 2.8 will be better at bokeh rendering typically), its also built as more of a consumer lens rather than a professional lens, so from what I hear its not quite as robust in build quality as the f2.8's.

    if I were in your shoes looking at a 70-200. I'd evaluate if you need f2.8 first. if you do, then the f4 is off the table. and if you plan on staying DX, then I'd probably grab a good used 2.8 VRI lens, if you ever plan on switching to FX, it would be very much worth it to save a little longer for the f2.8 VRII version instead of the VRI....if you don't need f2.8, I'd grab the f4 lens, it'll save you some cash and give great optical performance.
    -Justin

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    Super Moderator NEF.D90's Avatar
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    That is a great bit of information, I hope to add to it soon.
    On a side note we know that I am going FX ;) 1 month tops.
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    Administrator Aloicious's Avatar
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    I know I kindof added that in there for others who might be searching for the same question.

    I'd definitely only be looking at the f4, or the 2.8VRII versions, the VR1 will still work fine on FX, but you'll notice significant vignetting and reduced optical performance the further you get from the center of the frame.

    another option if you want to save some cash is look for the older 80-200 f2.8....it was made in the film days (35mm film is the same size as the FX sensor) and it'll give better FX optical performance than the VRI lens (VRII and f4 would probably be slightly better due to advanced coatings, etc, but really probably not something you'd even notice unless you're pixel peeping), it's built like a TANK (probably better than the newer lenses even), however it doesn't have ANY VR in it at all (which you may not really need much depending on what/how you shoot)...and it'll be much less expensive than any of the VR versions, I think they run in the 600-800 range if I'm not mistaken.
    -Justin

    Bodies - D800E
    Lenses - Sigma 18-35 f1.8 DC | Zeiss 15mm f2.8 ZF.2 | Zeiss 21mm f2.8 ZF.2 | Sigma 35mm f1.4 Art | 105mm f2.5 AI-S | 70-200 f2.8G VRII | 200mm F4.0D Micro AF | 300mm f2.8 VRII

    My PhotographyWild Blog

    C&C is always welcome on the images I post.
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