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24-120 VR Hep me!

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by GaryW, Jul 15, 2005.

  1. GaryW

    GaryW Guest

    Hopefully, this hasn't been discussed. I did a search.

    I am interested in getting a Nikon 24-120 VR. Here is why. I have the following lenses.

    18 - 35mm f3.5
    35-105 mm f3.5
    60 mm macro f2.8
    70 - 200 f2.8 VR

    My bodies are a Nikon D100 and a Fuji S3 Pro.

    My thinking is that I could eliminate the 18-35 and the 35-105 in favor of the 24-120, so I carry one less lens. And, although the widest f-stop is equivalent to the lenses I have, the VR essentially makes it a faster lens (as far as hand holding goes).

    BUT, I have read in the dpreview Nikon lens forum that the 24-120VR lens is soft. Is that your experience with it? I would like to lighten up my camera bag on trips, but not at the expense of softness of the lens.

    Follow-on question: If the 24-120 is soft, is it any more soft than my 18-35 and my 35-105?

    Sorry for the dummy post. I am not up on lenses.

  2. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

  3. Gary;

    I think Chris (Chris101) has a 24-120VR that he shoots on his D100. He seems to be quite pleased with it. He's on vacation for a few days, but I imagine he'll chime in on this one when he gets back. If you can lust that much longer before giving in.

    Gale might have that combo as well.

    Good luck and let us know what you decide.

  4. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    Here's two shots I recently took with the 24-120VR on my D70.

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
  5. Here is a link to some shots taken with my 24-120, I sold it to pick up the 28-70 AF-S
    I really liek this lens but wanted a faster one
  6. Gale


    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Gary ,

    I love my 24-120 VR VR VR. Wonderful carry around and versitile, Can hand hold and not worry.

    Great lens. OH yeah D100
  7. drueter


    Apr 24, 2005
    Southeast Texas

    I've used the 24-120 VR on both the D100 and D2H with good results. Haven't noticed that the images are soft.
  8. GaryW

    GaryW Guest

    Thanks for all of the replies.

    I am thinking the softness that I have read about might be the normal softness of a digital photo. All photos need to be sharpened somewhat in PP, so I've read.

    I think I will get the 24-120VR.

    Thanks again.

  9. billT

    billT Guest

    I used to use this lens on the S2-PRO and decided it was an OK lens. I then use the same lens on the D2H and was not at all happy with the result. When I put this lens on the D2X, it works out great. For some reaons, the pictures are no longer soft. It is now my walk around lens for the D2X.

  10. Taken yesterday with the 24-120VR. Not a good photo, but definitely not soft.
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
  11. GaryW

    GaryW Guest

    This is very interesting (and scary) to me. I am not a lens expert at all, but I have never heard of a lens' softness being dependent on the camera (or camera model) itself.

    I think I should go to my local camera store and shoot a couple of pictures with the 24-120 on my D100 and my S3 Pro.
  12. The 24-120 VR is an awesome lens on any camera but the D2H. For some reason it's complete crap on that body, but on a D70, D100 and D2X it's great. Go figure!
  13. Gale


    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    found one

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Not very exciting but.... Was taken high noon, stopped down to F16 to catch movement .

    Good lens
  14. Dave,

    You have the right idea. Go to the camera store and shoot some pictures with it.
    If it works for you... buy it....

    I HAD a 24-120 on my D2x and the pictures were fair at best. OK over f/9. (almost kept the lens).

    I put the 24-120 on my son's D70 and the shots came out better on his camera than mine. Like you, I am no expert, but the outcome was proof in my case. I have no idea why that was the outcome, but it was....

    I bought a 17-55 then a 70 - 200 for my camera. I am happy, my sons happy and we are both back to taking pictures with great results...

  15. Chris101


    Feb 2, 2005
    Hi Gary,

    I see Ken has already pointed to my page 'o pix made with that lens (gracias Ken), and as you can see, it's no slouch. The 24-120vr was the fourth lens I bought, replacing the third, a Tamron 28-200 that I was just unhappy with.

    For the first month or two, I was also unhappy with the baby VR (as I call it.) I'm not exactly sure how I came to love this lens, but I think it took a couple of things. First, I had to slow down with it - VR does not come 'on' instantly. You need to give the lens a half second or so to figure out what vibrations to reduce. So point it at your subject, half-press the button, breathe, then shoot.

    Second, do not assume that VR will compensate for sloppy handholding technique, even at higher speeds than you might think. You still need to do everything you can to steady the lens. VR is made to compensate for imperceptable, involuntary movements.

    Once I came to terms with the limitations of the lens (it is, after all, a f/5.6ish lens) I have found it to perform nicely. It is often the only lens I use on paid assignments, unless I have strong reasons to use a different lens, or cannot reconcile the limitations of the lens (again, this is not a fast lens.)

    Here is a photo of Sam (not from the aforementioned page) taken with the baby VR, that I do not think could have been taken as well by any other lens:

    Stilts y joven, D100 with 24-120vr @ 50mm, f/5, 1/20 sec. iso 1600
    Acrylic painting by Fidencio Durán, 1996
  16. GeeJay


    Jan 26, 2005
    Very interesting and important points you make about the 'baby VR' and how to use it. My tendency is to not think about perfect technique when using a VR and your comments are a 'heads up' for me.

    Also, your site of pictures taken with the 24-120VR was an excellent motivator to me to use the lens more. In fact I sent the link to a good friend who is considering the lens..

    Thanks and best to you,

  17. Ruffles


    May 5, 2005
    Rexburg, ID
    I really like the 24-120. I've used it on an S2-Pro, D2h, and now my D2x. Here's a 5 shot pano I took with it on the S2.

  18. Chris101


    Feb 2, 2005
    Superb Steve! Even better in the full size.

    (ps by the way - I love your tag line.)
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