Nikon Nikkor AF-S DX 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR

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Nikon Nikkor AF-S DX 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR

Postby matthiasmesser » Thu May 01, 2008 10:35 pm

Hi Folks,

my fist port here, so apologies if I screw up technically.

I recently got the 16-85 with my new D300 together with the
70-300 VR instead of just the 18-200 for the following reasons:

- longer max focal length
- less distortions
- better sharpness over the entire range

Well, the latter point was more a good guess since there are
not so many reviews out there on the 16-85. Sharpness was
my main concern, since it's the only thing you can't correct for offline.
I would really appreciate any comments, be they however devastating.
Here we go:

Image
Berlin, April 2008
Camera: NIKON D300
Lens: NIKKOR AFS DX 16-85mm 1:3.5-5.6 VR
A: 3.5
FL: 16mm

Here's one 100% crop:
Image

Image
Same as above, but
A: 8
FL: 35mm

100% crop:
Image

There will be more as soon as I can find the time for some more meaningful tests.

Cheers,
Matthias
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Postby Bob Andersson » Thu May 01, 2008 11:00 pm

Hi Matthias,

May I wish you a warm welcome to the CameraLabs forums.

Great to see you immediately up and running with a contribution to our Lens Gallery. Thank you. 8)

Bob.
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M.Zuiko Digital ED 75mm 1:1.8, Leica D Vario-Elmar 14mm-150mm f/3.5 - f/5.6 ASPH.
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Postby Kenneth Skou » Fri May 02, 2008 2:31 pm

It sure looks like this lens can create so nice crisp shots, confirming what all the reviews say about this lens.

That's a nice combo with the D300.

Cheers :-)
Kenneth Skou
 

Postby grahamnp » Sun May 04, 2008 11:49 am

Looks like a sharp lens Matthias. Do you have any experience with other lenses that start at 18mm? I'm interested to know if the extra 2mm makes much of a difference in practice.
grahamnp
 

Difference 16 vs 18mm

Postby matthiasmesser » Tue May 06, 2008 9:05 am

Hi Graham,

I don't have any hands-on experience with a NIKKOR 18mm, but if you
look into Ken Rockwell's Review ( where the choice of the 16-85 got quite
some bashing, by the way), you'll see a few sample shots showing that
the difference is, as to be expected, tiny.
I hope Gordon forgives me pointing you to the "competition" :wink: ,
but I'd gladly send you the URL if you dopn't have it already.

Cheers,
Matthias
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Postby grahamnp » Tue May 06, 2008 10:10 am

Thanks Matthias. No need for the URL, I've actually seen it already I just forgot lol. :? :D
grahamnp
 

more on sharpness

Postby matthiasmesser » Wed May 07, 2008 9:59 pm

Dear all,

thanks for all the feadback so far. Any chance of reading from another
owner of this lense, hugh?
As you've read above, I am mostly after judging sharpness, so here's
another batch with that focus:

Location: Tiny but picturesque little town of Kettwig, Ruhr area, Germany
Aperture: F/11
Shutter: 1/500s
ISO: 250
Focal length: 68mm
DEFAULT SHARPENING in the jpg processing. According to my few little
tests that means some loss of "impression" of sharpness -- +2 is probably the best choice with the D300.

So looking at the numbers above, one should think that this is it: the
vanilla area of performance of such a lense.
See for yourselves:

full but reduced:
Image

100 % crop:
Image

Cheers,

Matthias[/img]
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Postby thestig2010 » Tue Sep 30, 2008 3:37 am

Hey matthiasmesser!

Thanks for the review! I am currently shooting with an 18-135mm on a D80 (pretty standard, i know) as my general purpose lens. I like the new 18-105mm VR prospect, and I wouldnt mind upgrading to the D90 in the mid/near future.

However, I REALLY like the wider angle, and I dont end up shooting at my telephoto end that often with my 18-135mm (thats what my 70-300 is for)! Would you recommend me bumping up to the 16-85mm VR? Or would it really make that much difference?
thestig2010
 

Postby matthiasmesser » Fri Oct 03, 2008 12:17 pm

Hi thestig2010,

I think I've written it somewhere already: For a comparism
btw. 16 and 18mm you may want to look at Ken Rockwell's
review of the 16-85. Read with a little care though: The guy is
brilliant, no doubt, but when he DOES form an opinion it can get
rather subjective and he gives the old 16-85 qute a bashing in
his review.
I just love that lens and I would buy it again. I also have the
70-300 and I do find myself swapping those two a little more
often than I would have thought before. So you may want to
consider the 18-200, or even the Tamron super-zoom (was it
18-270?).
I'll see if I can post a few comparisms betw. 16 and 18 with my
lens lateron.

Cheers,
Matthias
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Postby thestig2010 » Mon Oct 06, 2008 12:43 am

hey matthias,

Thanks for replying back to me!

I, too, have a 70-300 lens (soon to upgrade to the VR instead of the G model), so getting an all-around super-zoom lens isnt really a big deal for me. I like the Nikkor 18-200mm, but I find when I shoot at the long end (which isnt often), its for a purpose, like an air show I attended this summer. For the telephoto, I'd just grab my 70.

I dig the range on my 18-135, but I'd gladly trade the extra length for not only the extra 2mm on the wide end, but also the VR! I, too, am a frequent Rockwell reader and had to sift through the 16-85 review. I was impressed with the quality of the samples and build quality (probably on par with the 18-200 by the looks of things).

Thanks for your opinion, i really appreciate the input!

-TheStig
thestig2010
 

Postby jTg829 » Fri Jul 31, 2009 12:36 am

Image
D90
16mm
1/1250 sec
f/3.5
ISO 100
jTg829
 

Postby sqjam » Tue Jul 13, 2010 8:02 pm

on the walk with a friend of mine

Image

Image
sqjam
 

Postby oldCarlos » Sat Nov 27, 2010 3:45 pm

Image


85mm
1/100th
F5.6
iso 100


100% crop

Image
Image btw,He who dies with the most toys, WINS!
Nikon D800E & D700 bodies + Nikon 200-400mm F4 VR1, 50mm F1.4G, 16-35mm f/4G VR, 105 F2.8 VR macro, 70-300mm lenses. A couple of filters, Giotto tripod & ballhead. Lowepro Slingshot 302 AW
Image
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Postby maxjj » Sun Nov 28, 2010 12:59 am

I read Rockwell :roll: review on the 16-85, and as usual with all his reviews take them with a grain of salt, but the only negative seems to be the price as its the same as the 18-200.

He is suggesting that he would buy the 18-200 because it covers more, but the 2 mm at the start of the lens is often more important than the other end of the zoom. He has access to the 12-24 at the wide angle, but you may not.

The 16-85 is sharper at the wide end and has better VR and less distortion than the 18-200. I am sure if it was cheaper he would recommend it.

I went through similar things with the 15-85 for the canon and for a general purpose zoom lens its awesome. For what its worth you have made the right choice in my opinion.
Canon Powershot S95, Canon 6D,7D, Canon 40 2.8 STM, Tamron 24-70 2.8 VC, Canon 17-40 L, Canon 15-85, Canon 85 1.8, Sigma 30 1.4, 50mm 1.8, Canon 100 2.8L Macro, Canon 70-300L +Kenko 1.4 Pro 300DGX, Canon 430EX II and RS 4 Classic
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Postby oldCarlos » Sat Feb 05, 2011 8:26 pm

Hand held from a couple of feet away. Shooting towards the light.

72mm
1/30th sec
F7.1
iso 720

Image
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Nikon D800E & D700 bodies + Nikon 200-400mm F4 VR1, 50mm F1.4G, 16-35mm f/4G VR, 105 F2.8 VR macro, 70-300mm lenses. A couple of filters, Giotto tripod & ballhead. Lowepro Slingshot 302 AW
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