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  #1  
Old 11-08-2006, 08:08 PM
markstaples markstaples is offline
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Default Nikon 18-200mm lens

I'm trying to gather opinions at the moment on the above lens as I am thinking of purchasing one. Any considered pros and cons would be gratefully received from those of you that own one. Many thanks in advance.
Mark
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  #2  
Old 11-08-2006, 08:20 PM
ben4321 ben4321 is offline
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Default Re: Nikon 18-200mm lens

I don't own one, but I'll give you my two cents anyway. The lens has a good reputation and I'm sure it will reward you with wonderful images, but like any lens with such a wide zoom span, there will be inevitable compromises in it's optical design. Expect a lot more distortion than you would get with a standard zoom, and less sharpness.
If quality is critical to you, get a standard zoom, or even better, a couple of prime lenses. You can't go wrong with the 50mm f1.8 lenses, especially as they cost less than 100 new.
If convenience and light weight are your priorities, go for the 18-200. I imagine it's a great all-in-one solution, but like I said before, be prepared for a loss in optical quality. The VR will be very useful though, especilly considering the slow speed of the lens.
Cheers,
Ben
Ben
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  #3  
Old 11-08-2006, 09:15 PM
markstaples markstaples is offline
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Default Re: Nikon 18-200mm lens

Thanks for this Ben. Very helpful. I would agree with you on the prime lens front - I bought the 50mm recently and am bowled over by the quality of images. I am indeed looking for the practicality that the 18-200 would bring but take on board your comments about quality. That would be my main concern if I went for one.
Best wishes
Mark
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  #4  
Old 11-08-2006, 09:50 PM
cherryripe cherryripe is offline
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Default Re: Nikon 18-200mm lens

Hi Mark
For my use the 18-200 is perfect. I'm small and don't like lugging huge bags around nor changing lenses. It's very practical and I don't have problems such as dust on the sensor as I don't change lenses. I'm too lazy to use a tripod and the VR works very well. It's been especially noticable in night shots, on moving boats and in very windy conditions. It's true that there's some distortion but for scenery it's fine. I correct some of the distortion of buildings with photoshop. Of course when you're at 200mm, you're limited to F5.6. To see if you're satisfied with the quality, all my shots taken since April are with it.
What's your waiting time ? I had to wait almost 4 months.
Regards
Nikki
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  #5  
Old 11-08-2006, 10:00 PM
markstaples markstaples is offline
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Default Re: Nikon 18-200mm lens

Thanks Nikki, again very helpful. Some of the UK websites reckon 2-4 weeks, but I bet it takes longer. Will have to see.
Cheers
Mark
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  #6  
Old 11-08-2006, 10:11 PM
nwoehnl nwoehnl is offline
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Default Re: Nikon 18-200mm lens

Hello Mark -

after ordering the 18-200 lens at my local photo store in January and finally receiving it in May (just in time for the Rotterdam TE meeting - I notice my waiting time was rather consistent with the one Nikki mentioned), I have it on my D200 and did not take it off since. It is a very pleasant and responsive lens to work with, AF is quick and accurate and the VR is of course an absolutely useful add, too. I do not find distortion to be any worse than with say the 18-70 kit lens that you may be familiar with from your D50 times (not sure), and correcting it in photo editing software is a matter of seconds.

One thing I have observed is that in case you zoom in to the mid- or high range of this lens (let's say 100 mm or above) and you point the lens vertically upward or downward (for example if you were zooming in on a duck on the river below you while standing on a bridge), some zoom creep might occur, meaning the lens might change the focal length if you don't hold on to the zoom ring. However I've only seen this happen a few times and it is not exactly a standard shooting scenario - looking at the type of photography that you like to do, this is likely to be a non-issue for you.

As a Nikonian, you are probably familiar with Ken Rockwell's website, where he published a <A HREF="http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/18200.htm">very extensive review of the 18-200 lens</A>. All his glowing enthusiasm aside (which makes an engaging read by all means), I have so far not found a major misrepresentation in the load of information that he has published there. As far as I'm concerned, after shooting more than 2.000 frames with it I love this lens and am happy with its quality and build.

I think that Nikon still has a considerable backlog of orders on this lens, so in case you should decide on getting one - good luck ;)

Norbert
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  #7  
Old 11-08-2006, 10:42 PM
markstaples markstaples is offline
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Default Re: Nikon 18-200mm lens

Thanks for this detailed and considered view Norbert. It was indeed the Ken Rockwell site that prompted me to look into purchasing one. He does rave about it. Having spoken to Martine and reading the responses so far left in this thread, I'm definitely getting closer to ordering one! Better do so sooner rather than later by the sound of it. I might just get it in time for Spring!! ;-)
Cheers
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  #8  
Old 11-08-2006, 10:45 PM
russte russte is offline
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Default Re: Nikon 18-200mm lens

Hi Mark,

I decided a month ago to switch from KM to Nikon on the reputation of this lens alone. But I imagine I will have to wait another four months or so before it arrives when I will marry it to the D200 my wife has very kindly agreed to buy me for Christmas (I love her dearly! :-) ).

Although I have been very happy with the image quality from my KM 5D (and could no doubt live with its sister Sony A-100), I was often frustrated by having the wrong lens on at the wrong time - no doubt spoilt by my Panasonic Lumix and its 12x zoom. The Nikkor offers me convenience, flexibility and image quality. OK, it may not be quite as sharp as a 50/1.8 (not much is) but it is a very good lens and, in the real world, sharp with minimal distortion. And, on top of that, it offers up to four stops VR.

I'd certainly buy the lens. If for some reason you find you don't like it, then you will probably be able to sell it on e-Bay at a small profit, such is the demand. You really can't lose.

Best wishes

Stephen
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  #9  
Old 11-08-2006, 10:58 PM
erdna erdna is offline
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Default Re: Nikon 18-200mm lens

I am very happy with this lens. The range is good that you do not have to carry very many lens when you travel. At the widest, the barrel distortion is very visible just like any other 18mm lenses. The lens if shooting an object below you and you are looking down, the lens creeps down too! You have to hold on to the control ring. The movement is so quiet, making the camera click a noise.

Andre'
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  #10  
Old 11-08-2006, 11:00 PM
markstaples markstaples is offline
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Default Re: Nikon 18-200mm lens

Hi Stephen
And thanks for taking the time to give your view which is helping sway my decision. I'm certainly hearing a lot of positive noises about the lens at the moment!!
Cheers
Mark
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