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Thread: Nikkor 70-200 VR vs 80-200

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    Nikkor 70-200 VR vs 80-200

    I've done a bit of a search on here but couldn't find any posts on this...

    I'm looking at either the 70-200 VR or 80-200 to use on my D600 and wanted to get some peoples thoughts on either and/or both lenses. I used an 80-200 on the w/end in low light and found it quite good but just wondering how the 70-200 stacks up against it ie, focus, opticals, sharpness etc...

    I've read a few reviews but I trust the opinions shared here so any thoughts would be appreciated.

    Cheers
    E
    Erren
    EPS Photography :: 4ROCs Offroad + Adventure

    Nikon D600 :: 14-24 f2.8 G :: 50 f1.4 G :: 18-200 f3.5-5.6 VRII


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    Account Closed Wayne's Avatar
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    The question is whether you are comparing the 70-200/VR with the AF-S or AF-D version of the 80-200.

    The AF-S version of the 80-200 is reportedly a great lens, and the extra 10mm at the wide end shouldn't be a huge issue, but lack of VR in low light may be. The same great optics are in the AF-D version I believe, and with the VR already noted, the only real world differences in this version will be the inability to just grab the focus ring for manual focus, you would have to switch the lens over to manual focus to do that, which can be a pain in the arse, if you go back/forth, and you will require a body that has a screw motor in it, otherwise there will be no AF at all.

    Bodies like the D5100/3100/D40 et al have no built in screw (focus) motor, but bodies like D600/D700/800/D300/s/D3/s/x all have a screw motor so you will be fine.

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Mint condition Version 1 70-200 lenses are selling at the 1500 - 1600 range secondhand.

    I saw a very good condition AFS 80-200 for sale in Sydney recently for 1400

    The AFD version does not compare well for focus speed compared to the 70-200 ver 1 or ver 2 but can be bought new for around 900 from Hong Kong

    A new 70-200 ver 2 can be bought delivered in Aus for 2000 drive away nor more to pay.

    If you pocket stretches to the ver 2 70-200 buy it have no more regrets. Otherwise a ver 1 in excellent condition will still be a good buy and better than the 80-200 models due to the newer design and features.
    Andrew
    Nikon, Fuji, Nikkor, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina and too many other bits and pieces to list.



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    Who let the rabble in? Lance B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I @ M View Post
    Mint condition Version 1 70-200 lenses are selling at the 1500 - 1600 range secondhand.

    I saw a very good condition AFS 80-200 for sale in Sydney recently for 1400

    The AFD version does not compare well for focus speed compared to the 70-200 ver 1 or ver 2 but can be bought new for around 900 from Hong Kong

    A new 70-200 ver 2 can be bought delivered in Aus for 2000 drive away nor more to pay.

    If you pocket stretches to the ver 2 70-200 buy it have no more regrets. Otherwise a ver 1 in excellent condition will still be a good buy and better than the 80-200 models due to the newer design and features.
    Agreed.

    I have also heard that there can be focus issues with the 80-200 f2.8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wayne View Post
    The question is whether you are comparing the 70-200/VR with the AF-S or AF-D version of the 80-200.

    The AF-S version of the 80-200 is reportedly a great lens, and the extra 10mm at the wide end shouldn't be a huge issue, but lack of VR in low light may be. The same great optics are in the AF-D version I believe, and with the VR already noted, the only real world differences in this version will be the inability to just grab the focus ring for manual focus, you would have to switch the lens over to manual focus to do that, which can be a pain in the arse, if you go back/forth, and you will require a body that has a screw motor in it, otherwise there will be no AF at all.

    Bodies like the D5100/3100/D40 et al have no built in screw (focus) motor, but bodies like D600/D700/800/D300/s/D3/s/x all have a screw motor so you will be fine.
    I would be looking at the AF-S in the 80-200 if I went that way... I did find it a bit of an inconvenience to switch from A to M focusing but prob because I'm not used to doing so - would be an issue shooting sports I reckon/action.

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    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    I've just been through the exact same process.

    The 70-200 VR11 was out of my price range, so I looked long and hard at the 80-200 AF-S, dodgy tripod collar et al.

    I also was looking for a macro lens to complete my basic kit.

    In my internet wanderings I came across an immaculate Sigma 150mm f2.8 macro and it's matched 1.4X T/C, which gave me my short/mid telephoto ( 150/210mm) and macro in one very sharp package.

    I'm delighted with it, and if I feel the need for something a bit shorter I'll consider the Nikon AF-S 85mm f1.8G.

    Just something to think about.
    Cheers
    Kev

    D600 : D7200 and too much stuff to list

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    I wouldn't want to be fixed at that sort of focal range, interesting thought though... I would be interested in hearing from anyone who is using one of these lenses with a T/C

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    Account Closed Wayne's Avatar
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    The 70-200 VR1 & 2 both excel with all 3 of the current Nikon TC's, the older 2xTCII was a pretty average performer on any lens, but the TC20EIII is outstanding, I use it often on my 70-200VR, 200/2VR and 400/2.8VR with excellent results.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    I didn't like my 80-200 AF-D.
    Good lens in many respects, but the focusing system was it's downfall. Saying that tho, it backfocused on my D300, but it could work better on any other body(which I did eventually get to see happen).
    What drove me to sell it was that it needed to be fixed, as the manual manipulation of the focusing system was tedious to use for those times when manual override was important.
    it was just easier to sell it.
    (in the end I ended up getting the Tamron equivalent instead).
    But if I had my chance all over again, I'd definitely get the 70-200VR as my first preference now .... the VR can be quite useful in many situations.

    Problem with the VR1 version of the 70-200VR is that the edges are very soft on a full frame camera, and you won't see any quality from them until about f/11 or f/16.
    This can be important if you need the edges of the frame to be sharp.(eg. landscapes and whatnot) .. for sports and or portraits, where most of these lenses will be used for this is typically unimportant.
    Just something to note.

    If you can't afford or justify the stratospheric cost of the VRII, then a Sigma 70-200 OS would be the natural alternative .. until the new VC version of the Tammy is eventually released(apparently this coming month).

    At the lower end of the $1K mark, I think either the Sigma or Tammy would be a better option compared to the 80-200 AF-D.
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
    {Sigma}; ->10-20/4-5.6 : 50/1.4 : 12-24/4.5-5.6II : 150-600mm|S
    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC


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    Hmmm, the lens would be seeing some landscape work so are you saying the edges are soft full stop or they start to get better around f/11 to f/16?

    ...and I have ruled out getting an 80-200 AF-D but I will check out the new Tamron when it's released

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Yeah, apparently the original version of the 70-200VR didn't look so good on the then new full frame D3, and Nikon were rushed to get an updated model to market in as short a time as possible.

    The corners are soft on the VR1 lens so much so that apparently, at less than f/11, it made it harder to do panorama stitching.

    Enter the 70-200VRII .. much better corner performance than the original.

    The problem is only seen at 200mm or so, and was a common complaint from those that used it in this manner .. not many, as the main usage was for sport portrait, where corner performance was less noticeable(ie. blurred anyhow!)

    Never saw how well or not the 80-200/AF-D does towards the corners, but what I did like about that lens was the colour and bokeh it rendered.
    Tammy not as good colour and bokeh, but still good(if that makes sense), but sharper all round than the 80-200 .. and close enough if not better than the 70-200VR for sharpness.

    The lack of VR is the killer tho, for those times when VR is handy to have.

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    A VRII would be real nice but would take me quite a while to save for...

    Does anyone have some sample photos taken with a 70-200 VR1? Wouldn't mind seeing how soft the edges are...

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    I'm too busy now, but when I get a chance(this coming weekend hopefully), I'll post a few images with the Tammy and D800 for ya too.

    I don't have the VR1 lens, but I've seen images from well respected photographers that clearly show that the edges of the frame with the VR1 lens are obviously/visibly much softer and mushy than from lenses of equivalent focal length types(on full frame body).

    80-200AF-S was one of the comparative lenses and shows a clear advantage once stopped down to say f/5.6. And it wasn't until about f/11-f/16 that the VR1 lens came good.

    For an indication as to how this may look in real life, have a look at DPR's test of the VR1 lens ... here

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    Ausphotography Regular MissionMan's Avatar
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    Get the 70-200. If you get the 80-200 you'll always be wondering whether you should have got the 70-200 no matter how good it is. Mind tricks are a terrible thing.

    I have the 70-200 and it's absolutely mind blowing in quality.
    Fuji XT-2, Fuji X-E3, Fuji X100T, Fuji VPB-XT2, Fujinon 16-55 f/2.8, Fujinon 50-140 f/2.8, Fujinon 35 f2, Fujinon 90 f/2, Fujinon 60 f/2.4 Macro, Yongnuo YN560 IV, Yongnuo YN560 TX, Benro C3580T, Mefoto Q00
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    Ausphotography Veteran MattNQ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post

    Never saw how well or not the 80-200/AF-D does towards the corners, but what I did like about that lens was the colour and bokeh it rendered.
    Agree on that - I love the colour and bokeh on my 80-200. Despite its age, it is still optically fantastic.

    My opinion (for the little it is worth ) - Most sport I shoot between f2.8-f4 & find it plenty sharp enough through the full zoom range...but I've only ever had it wide on a crop sensor, so can't offer comment on full frame corners. Also can't comment on autofocus performance as I shoot sport on manual with it . Damn fine lens, but I'd wait & check out that new Tamron and compare all your options
    Matt
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    Have you considered the new Tamron 70-200 2.8? Worth checking Matt Granger's review of it..seems to be a quantum leap from the previous generation, and while I'd probably buy the Nikon VRII myself, the Tamron would be my second choice rather than the VRI or old 80-200..

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xmzbkcgWrIs&feature=plcp

    Honestly I think gone are the days where Sigma/Tamron lenses were crap, they are seriously stepping up their game and are not very far off the Canon/Nikon gear.
    Last edited by Sifor; 12-12-2012 at 12:10pm.
    Cheers, Troy

    D800; AF-S 24-70mm f/2.8G; AF-S 50mm 1.8G; SB-910; || 120-300mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM 'S'; APO Teleconverter 2x DG || Phantom 2; H32D Gimbal; 5.8Ghz FPV LCD GS

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sifor View Post
    Worth checking Matt Granger's review of it
    Blimey Sifor, where did you find that bloke, first time I have ever seen him and all I could think of is that he is a home grown Ken Rockwool.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sifor View Post
    Honestly I think gone are the days where Sigma/Tamron lenses were crap.
    Strangely enough, there are many lenses made presently and in the past by both Sigma and Tamron that are held in high regard and far from crap as you put it. On the other hand we cam also find examples of "brand name" lenses that have a far from enviable reputation but strangely it seems that many brand snobs either refuse to acknowledge the fact, gloss over it or just plain lie through their teeth about the failings of their particular piece of "crap".

    Quote Originally Posted by Sifor View Post
    They are seriously stepping up their game and are not very far off the Canon/Nikon gear.
    Especially in price. The Tamron 70-200 is on the market for about $400.00 less than the Nikon ver11.

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    Quote Originally Posted by I @ M View Post
    Blimey Sifor, where did you find that bloke, first time I have ever seen him and all I could think of is that he is a home grown Ken Rockwool.
    Out of all the youtube photography channels, he is the only one I actually pay attention to - you can generally detect bias/bs in youtube people, and for the past two years I have always found him to be clean cut, honest and entertaining. His technique channel has been of great help and interest for me...still, each to their own.

    Quote Originally Posted by I @ M View Post
    Strangely enough, there are many lenses made presently and in the past by both Sigma and Tamron that are held in high regard and far from crap as you put it. On the other hand we cam also find examples of "brand name" lenses that have a far from enviable reputation but strangely it seems that many brand snobs either refuse to acknowledge the fact, gloss over it or just plain lie through their teeth about the failings of their particular piece of "crap".
    Crap might have been a bit harsh and flippant, but they were a few years ago not my first choice due to their lacklustre quality control. Today, however, my opinion has changed considerably and I consider them in my purchasing decisions. I'll be buying a Sigma 120-300 2.8 soon enough, given the price (~$2k) the bang for buck vis a vis the Nikon 300 2.8 at ~$6k is clearly in favour of the Sigma!

    Quote Originally Posted by I @ M View Post
    Especially in price. The Tamron 70-200 is on the market for about $400.00 less than the Nikon ver11.
    That's one of my real concern with them... they may end up pricing themselves out of the market (ie cheaper alternative to the name brands), hence why I said I'd probably just get the Nikon anyway for a little bit more.

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sifor;1096679



    Crap might have been a bit harsh and flippant, but they were a few years ago not [U
    my[/U] first choice due to their lacklustre quality control.
    I still think that you are being rather over reactionary towards 3rd party lenses in general. Would you care to provide examples of the lacklustre quality control from your own experience of past or presently owned lenses. I'm happy to provide first hand experiences with lenses from Tamron, Sigma and Tokina spanning the last 6 years and haven't found any "faults" that would make me join the internet chatter chorus against them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by I @ M View Post
    I still think that you are being rather over reactionary towards 3rd party lenses in general. Would you care to provide examples of the lacklustre quality control from your own experience of past or presently owned lenses. I'm happy to provide first hand experiences with lenses from Tamron, Sigma and Tokina spanning the last 6 years and haven't found any "faults" that would make me join the internet chatter chorus against them.
    Autofocus motor dead on arrival, misaligned elements requiring return for calibration.. enough to make one cringe. Glad your experience has been good, but it's not the same for everybody; but in any case I don't see myself as joining "the internet chatter chorus against them" given that I'm going to be buying some expensive glass with Sigma in the near future anyway and I recommended to the OP to check out the new and very good Tamron 70-200 2.8 VC. Now it's a long bow to draw saying I'm overreacting, if anything it looks like I've inadvertently poked the tiger and being unreasonably mauled by it on this one...best to leave it at that.
    Last edited by Sifor; 12-12-2012 at 8:46pm.

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