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DX 16-85mm

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by sc_john, Jul 10, 2008.

  1. sc_john


    Feb 12, 2008
    Charleston, SC
    I am considering this lens for a one lens travel kit with D300. Can anyone comment on experience with handling, performance, IQ, etc. of this lens. I did a search, but didn't see anything specific (maybe I don't know how to define search properly).Thanks.

  2. I'm in the same boat. My 18-200 has disappointed me, so I am looking for an alternative light travel lens instead of my 17-55.
  3. There's also the 18-55VR which is much cheaper.

    or something fast: Tamron 17-50 f2.8/Sigma 18-50 f2.8
  4. cotdt


    Jul 14, 2007
    Bay Area, USA
    this is an amazing lens, sharp wide open corner to corner. i like it, will be getting one myself.
  5. jafo


    Jun 11, 2008
    Chatsworth, CA
    My wife is all but convinced to upgrade her 18-55 VR D60 kit lens with the 16-85. She also has the 70-300 VR, so the 18-200 isn't justifiable (and the 16-85 is supposedly sharper).
  6. Butlerkid

    Butlerkid Cafe Ambassador Moderator

    Apr 8, 2008
    Rutledge, Tennessee
    FWIW - I just went through that process of selecting a "travel" lens for my new D300. My 24-120 VR is very good, but I wanted a real step up in IQ. I finally selected the 24-70 over the 16-85.


    I analyzed past shooting and determined that 85% of my shoots were between 12 and 80 mm.

    I have the 12-24 for the wide end.

    For greater control of DOF, I decided to go with the f2.8.

    Hope I made the right decision! :confused: 
  7. Karen,

    Sounds like you did. I also have the 24-70, but am just tired of hiking it cross country - heavy for travel since I also lug 30 1.4, 85 1.4, Sigma 150, 12-24 and d300.
  8. adaml


    Feb 21, 2006
    I picked up the 16-85 several weeks ago to be the companion lens for my D200, now that the 18-200 has been moved over to the D80 (the 18-70mm that was on the D80 has been calibrated to my D70 converted to IR).

    So far so good. I can't say that the IQ is light years ahead of the 18-200, principally because I've found the 18-200 to be an excellent lens if you take into account the necessary trade-offs for an 11x lens.

    What I can say say is that the extra 2mm on the wide end more than makes up for the mm's lost on the telephoto end, at least for my shooting requirements.

    It's not cheap, but IMHO opinion it's good value for the money.
  9. I just received my 16-85 VR yesterday (got a great deal on eBay from 17th St Photo with 25% Microsoft cashback, total was $440 :biggrin:) . Will be sharing it with my wife, since I also have the 17-55 in that range :smile:

    First impressions are very favorable - the 16-85 is sharper than the 18-135 that it will replace, with much less distortion and light fall-off. Far better build quality than the 18-135 kit lens, but of course not up to 17-55 standard... Still, the 16-85 VR is better built than any of the previous 18-xxx DX zooms!

    Against the 17-55, the 16-85 VR holds up surprisingly well - at f/8 or f/11 it may even beat the pro zoom... 17-55 has 2.8, of course, and better contrast - but surpisingly, more CA in the corners...

    I think the 16-85 VR will see a lot of use for landscapes and as a general travel lens. The 17-55 is more suited towards people/events. I'm actually glad my wife also likes the old 28-105 and tends to prefer a longer focal length as a walkaround, so we won't fight over the 16-85 all the time :wink:

    In case you hadn't noticed, I highly recommend the 16-85 :smile:


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