18-55 & 55-200 vs 18-105

Joined
Sep 27, 2008
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SE Wisconsin
I am trying to help a friend buy their first camera. Primary use will be indoor floral in his condo and also sunrises over lake michigan.

Even though I say he can handle a 7100 he feels it's over his head and will get the 5200. Where I need help is with the lens. He can get a kit with the 18-55 & the 55-200 or the 18-105.

From what I read it appears the 18-105 is a better lens. Granted he will lose 95 mm in focal length but for what he is shooting that isn't a concern.

Looking for feedback from those that have used the lenses and know more about them then me.

I also know that the 55-200 lens will rotate when zooming so if you have a filter on it you are continually needing to adjust the filter. Does the 18-105 do this as well?

I really want him to get the 5200 with the 16-85 but he keeps coming back to the 18-55 & 55-200 only due to there are more kits/packages out there that give you free stuff like a bag etc.
 
Joined
Oct 5, 2008
Messages
1,659
Location
AZ
The 18-105 filter ring does not rotate. It also seems to focus a bit faster on my D3200 than the 18-55 VR or 55-200 VR. This lens also has the most quality feel of these three, and I think the VR is a bit more effective than the 55-200 VR.

On the newest 55-200 with VR the filter ring does not rotate, and IMHO this version with VR is what he would want on a D5200. I would avoid the earlier non-VR primarily due to the lack of VR, but also because less sturdy feeling 3 cam zoom system and the fact that the price difference between the VR and non-VR versions is not that much.

The filter ring on the 18-55 VR does rotate on focus, but not zoom. It also extends while focusing.

For the uses mentioned I would suggest the 18-105 as a very good one lens solution :wink:
 
Joined
Jan 4, 2008
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New York City
I don't think there's much difference in terms of image quality with these three lenses. The 18-105 has a better build quality, but I notice no difference in images taken with all three lenses on my D40x. If you can't convince your friend that the 7100 is worth the extra money for versatility, I think he'll be happier with the single lens solution of the 18-105. It's certainly a great kit lens.
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
25,761
Location
SW Virginia
I don't think there's much difference in terms of image quality with these three lenses. The 18-105 has a better build quality, but I notice no difference in images taken with all three lenses on my D40x. If you can't convince your friend that the 7100 is worth the extra money for versatility, I think he'll be happier with the single lens solution of the 18-105. It's certainly a great kit lens.

I think the differences would be more noticeable on the high resolution D5200 than on a D40x. Most reviewers rate the 18-105VR as nearly equivalent to the 16-85VR in image quality, but not the 18-55/55-200 combo.

I have all three and prefer the 18-105, but I don't have objective comparisons to present.
 
Joined
Feb 15, 2012
Messages
524
Location
Minneapolis
I've shot with all three (latest versions). The 18-55 VR takes great pictures but feels terrible and has clunky, noisy AFS. The two copies of the 55-200, one VR and one non-VR, were optically alright and tactically terrible with the same pseudo-AFS. The 18-105 VR felt much better than the others, focused quickly and silently, and took sharp, contrasty pictures; it's a much better lens.
 
Joined
Dec 11, 2012
Messages
89
Location
Northern California
My 18-105 is great. Better range, smoother, quieter and faster to focus than my 18-55.
 

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