September 26, 2004

ON FRIDAY, I promised that I would take some pictures with the new 28-200mm lens I bought for the D70. I did, and I’ve posted them over at the Exposure Manager gallery. Bottom line: Very nice results. For a proper test, these should have been done on a tripod, and on a less-hazy day. Nonetheless, I’ve got shots at the wide and tele settings, and a very nice quasi-macro close-up shown below. Complaints: The autofocus can be a bit slow. Overall, especially when shooting into the sun, the lens seems a bit softer than the 18-70 kit lens that comes with the camera, and more-than-a-bit softer than the 50mm 1.8 lens. And, as a drawback to the low weight, the lens is light enough that holding it steady at the longer focal lengths is harder than it would be with a heavier lens.

On the other hand, as you can see by comparing this photo taken at 28 (equivalent to about 42mm on a 35 mm film camera) with this picture taken at 200 mm (equivalent to about 300 mm), you get a very impressive zoom range, quite good quality, very small size, and — key — a very reasonable price. The 70-200 mm VR lens that the camera-shop guy tried to sell me is undoubted a lot better, but at around $1800 it had better be. ($1600 — cheap! — here). It’s also heavy. Sometimes that doesn’t matter, but sometimes it does.

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