My wife wants a zoom for birthday for her Nikon D70. It came with a Nikon AF-S DX 18-70mm lens. I would think something longer with image stabilization might be nice.
Two I've looked at online are--
Nikon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 G ED-IF AF-S VR DX Nikkor Lens
Sigma 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 DC OS AF
The Nikon is a bit faster on the long end but also pricier. Reviews of both show pluses and minuses for each.
Any opinions on these or any others I should consider?
I figure the longer zoom would replace the 18-70 for all outdoor use and the 18-70 would be used only when she wanted something less bulky.
She's not quite to the level of serious amateur, more occasional hobbyist. I want to buy her something nice but it doesn't have to be super professional level. Price limit is about $500.
I'd suggest you keep the 18-70 and buy a dedicated lens, say 70-200 or 70-300. The one-size-fits-all lenses tend to be slower, allowing less light through, which will cause you no end of headaches when shooting in low-light. You can buy an excellent 80-200 2.8 AFD lens for around $500. That's what I sold mine for. It is a heavy lens, very durable, but gathers a lot of light, a much more important issue than VR IMHO. Depends on the shooting style and preferences of the owner.
Keep the 18-70 and get the new 55-200mm VR sells for $249. Instead of a do all 18-200 for $750. I bring just the lens i think i will need to go shooting.
The 18-70 for macro or around the house type stuff, and 55-200 for travel, nature trails.
From Ken's site> > > RECOMMENDATIONS http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/55-200mm-vr.htm
If you're on a budget, get the 55-200mm VR. That's easy.
If you have the time to wait and the budget, the Nikon18-200mm VR is much more convenient than swapping between two lenses.
If you don't need the range beyond 55mm, I love the super lightweight and close-focusing 18-55mm kit lens. You may need no other lens. I make my best shots with wide angles; I rarely use teles. I prefer to get closer.
If you are a dedicated tele shooter, you may want to spend $500 on the better 70-300mm VR, $800 on the professional 80-200mm f/2.8 or $1,600 the professional 70-200mm f/2.8 VR. < < <
She specifically mentioned macro zoom so I think she wants to avoid lens switching. I think she would be happiest with the 18-200. Of course that would then make the 18-70 somewhat redundant.
Kinda wish there was something like 14-40mm. That would be great for indoor and then just a 18-200mm for outdoor. The wide angle 10-20mm zoom is pretty pricey.
Half the price of that Nikon 10-20 zoom
From Ken's site
> > > Having compared it directly to my Nikkor 12-24mm f/4 AF-S DX, it's obvious to me that this Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 is better than my Nikkor.
This Tokina 11-16mm is the world's fastest and sharpest ultrawide lens for small format digital cameras (Nikon DX and Canon 1.6x). Considering its bargain price of under $600, its the world's best ultrawide lens for digital SLRs.
It is very well made. Its distortion is much easier to correct than the Nikkor's.
If you haven't actually shot with these lenses, you'd think this Tokina competes with Nikon's 12-24mm f/4, Canon's 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5, Sigma's 10-20mm f/4-5.6, Tamron's 11-18mm f/4.5-5.6 and Tokina's own 12-24mm f/4. (Tamron announced work on a 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5, in January 2008, but it doesn't exist.) I compared all of the older lenses back in 2005 in my Digital Wide Zoom Comparison. < < <
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