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Is the 18-200mm lens a dud?

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by MikeT, Sep 25, 2008.

  1. First I did a search, then I looked at every thread here and I just don't see many comments on the 18-200 lenses.

    I like my 18-135 but sometimes wish I had a little more reach on the long end.

    Anyone know how the 18-200 compares to the 18-135?

    I'm entertaining the idea of passing the 18-135 to my brother and getting a 18-200 if it would be a good replacement.

  2. It's not a dud. In fact, it's a fine lens optically, although it has some compromises due to its complex optical design for 11x zoom range. The pro lenses are definitely better, at typically 3x-5x price and weight difference.

    I have an 18-200VR and aside from its build quality, I find that it works very well and is useful on many occasions. I prefer the Sigma 18-200 OS since it has considerably better build and a lock to prevent zoom creep.
  3. wbeem


    Feb 11, 2007
    Sanford, FL
    William Beem
    I've really enjoyed my 18-200. Some people have spoken about it being soft, but my copy didn't seem to have that problem. It's a very versatile walk-about or travel lens.
  4. Connahhh


    Oct 27, 2007
    Lens creep on it drives me insane. But yes, for an all in one, it's really awesome.
  5. Yea, It's a no brainer if money wasn't an issue.

    I watched a youtube on the Nikon 18-200 showing the zoom creep.

    I haven't owned any Sigma lenses (yet!), so I have no experience with the brand. I'll keep it in mind.

    Thanks for your reply Brian.

  6. Thanks Bill and Connor!

    I certainaly don't want a soft lens or one with creep.

  7. I have on thats a few months old and don't have any problems with creep maybe they have addressed this issue.


  8. That's the idea!!!
  9. I can't speak to the 18-135, but my copy of the 18-200 VR is surprisingly sharp and contrasty. To be fair however, I think there's been some sample variation, especially with early copies of this lens.

    Here's a shot taken by my wife with our 18-200 on a D200 body:
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Also, here are a couple of threads that talk some about the lens:

    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  10. Edward, I saw this after I posted my response below - but yours is a good thought! I also have the 70-300 VR, and that's a very nice lens too. That, with a 18-135, would be great combo.
  11. moffo


    Oct 20, 2005
    Central TX
    I was lucky enough to get one of the earliest 'Made in Japan' versions, and I think it's been great.
  12. I believe the 18-200mm is an excellent choice for an "all-around". It's not a particulary fast lens although it does cover plenty of territory and IT does have VRII.

    My 18-200mm doesn't have any of this "lens creep", but it is a fairly new lens I bought it a couple of months ago. It's great for travel and covers many bases.

    It's not an equal to my 70-200mm f2.8, but it was plenty of $$ less to buy! It really depends what you want out of a lens. If an all-around/walk-around single lens is what you want, this is the lens you'll want on one of your cameras.

    Here's a snap I took with this lens, no problem with softness:
  13. jonh68


    Sep 21, 2008
    My copy is plenty sharp. I would rather have one 18-200 than a 18-135 and 70-300. There isn't much difference between 200 and 300, and the money spent on the 70-300 could be applied for something with more reach.

    Lens creep is aggravating at times, but not as much as carrying two or three lenses around.
  14. short answer: yes
    long answer: yessssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss
  15. stayathomedad


    Mar 11, 2008
    those who say the 18-200 is a dud either has never used one for any extended period of time, or has a large collection of pro glass...

    The mere fact that in a moment you can zoom in from 18 to 200 is worth it's weight in gold...

    Sure optics blah blah blah... soft blah blah blah... slow blah blah blah...

    GOOD GRIEF PEOPLE... it is what it is...
  16. paulskimcb


    Feb 12, 2007
    I'd say get an 85mm f/1.8 instead. I traded my 18-235mm in for a mint used 85mm, and I've been happy as a clam ever since.

    (I do miss the wide end, tho'...)
  17. RayLarson


    Mar 27, 2007
    Pawtucket, RI
    My wife and I have both the Nikkor 18-200VR and the Sigma 18-200OS. Both are sharp and are great walkaround lenses. I find the build better on the Sigma but the Nikkor is one stop faster. My Nikkor has no lens creep but the Sigma has the zoom lock which is a great feature. The Sigma is a little less $$$ but I wouldn't sell either.

    Taken with the Nikkor 18-200VR

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
  18. Care to elaborate?:confused: 
  19. Pesto126


    Apr 13, 2006
    Northeast USA
    My 18-200 is surprisingly sharp - I'll post some examples I took the last couple days. I have a close up of a praying mantis that I was amazed with... Sure, it has some creep - but how often are you taking a photo straight up or down with an 18-200 lens?

    I like it very much and am happy I made the choice to purchase it to complement my other pro lenses.
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