Showcase Nikon 35-70mm f/2.8D

Joined
Mar 20, 2011
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Australia
I paid a little more than twice what you did and I still feel well bought.
i paid, from memory, ~AUD$650'ish for mine (i bought an F5, 20-25, 35-70, 80-200 and an SB25 all at the same time, so i got a decent discount on the package).

mind you, that was 16 years ago and the lens has paid for itself many, many times over. given the kind of work i do involves taking a lot of 'social' pictures at various sporting and social functions for the paper i work for, the 35-70 range is the perfect piece of gear.

you're right about the flare. you need to be careful shooting into the light. i lost the lens hood many moons ago and just use my hand as a hood when needed. mines 'acceptable' wide open, but once down to f4, it's like a razor.

my 35-70 now sits proudly on my D3s, that's the SIXTH camera body the one lens has been used with (an F4, 2xF5, D70, D700 and now the D3s).

one of the things i like most about it is the fact it doesn't draw attention like a 24-70 will. if i take the grip off my D700 and use the 35-70, to the untrained eye i look a lot like Joe Public with their D7k + kit zoom.

if you can't tell, i am a HUGE fan of this particular piece of gear.
 
Joined
Feb 5, 2007
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Banff National Park, Alberta
my 35-70 now sits proudly on my D3s, that's the SIXTH camera body the one lens has been used with (an F4, 2xF5, D70, D700 and now the D3s).

one of the things i like most about it is the fact it doesn't draw attention like a 24-70 will. if i take the grip off my D700 and use the 35-70, to the untrained eye i look a lot like Joe Public with their D7k + kit zoom.

if you can't tell, i am a HUGE fan of this particular piece of gear.
There's definitely something to be said about 'big lens factor'. IMHO the 80-200 is a killer portrait lens but it's also a big, and intimidating lens. Even though the 24-70 is undoubtedly a better piece of glass but if you're shooting a camera shy subject you will certainly get that 'deer in the headlights' look.

Wide open it's merely acceptable, true. But I've printed shots 12X18 off it and compared them to my 80-200 (also wide open) The 35-70 looked fine printed 12X18. On a monitor it is easy to see that the 35-70 doesn't do that well wide open but in real world situations so long as you've nailed focus on a print or a down sized internet shot nobody will be the wiser.

I love this lens as well. It fits perfectly between my 16-35 and my 80-200. It's built like a brick poop house but it's not too heavy or big. I suspect you could throw it through a plate glass window and still use it to take razor sharp pictures.

I think this is the best deal in the nikon line up. If you're shooting full frame there is no better deal, even at $400 to cover the mid focal lengths. It's not wide enough to be considered a do all lens but if you're packing a dedicated WA (and most people do) then this lens fits the bill perfectly.
 
Joined
Mar 20, 2011
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1,959
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Australia
There's definitely something to be said about 'big lens factor'. IMHO the 80-200 is a killer portrait lens but it's also a big, and intimidating lens.
hehe, no kidding.

it was only when i got my 105 macro a couple of years ago that i started using something other than the 80-200 for portrait work.

as for "big and intimidating", try explaining to a non-camera person that a 200/2 is only a mid-tele and that no, it won't show you the moons of Jupiter.

Even though the 24-70 is undoubtedly a better piece of glass but if you're shooting a camera shy subject you will certainly get that 'deer in the headlights' look.
yuh. those 77mm front elements just scream out "I'm Taking Ur Piktooor!!11!!"

i really, really need to get myself a straight 50mm at some point soon (my old one died an inglorious death-by-being-dunked-in-coke some years ago at the hands of an ex-friend). i have an old 24/2.8D and that thing is teeny-TINY compared to a 20-25 or 14-24.
 
Joined
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Banff National Park, Alberta
as for "big and intimidating", try explaining to a non-camera person that a 200/2 is only a mid-tele and that no, it won't show you the moons of Jupiter.
Yup. I once had a conversation with someone who thought she was a camera person why I paid more for my 80-200 than she did for her sigma 600-whatever lens. She couldn't get it through her skull why my 80-200 not only cost more, was nearly as big and heavier than her lens but only went to 200mm. She later bragged up her 800mm mirror lens that she got for $300 but came to me a week later wonder why she couldn't get the same results as working pros shooting 600 f/4L glass with converters.



yuh. those 77mm front elements just scream out "I'm Taking Ur Piktooor!!11!!"

i really, really need to get myself a straight 50mm at some point soon (my old one died an inglorious death-by-being-dunked-in-coke some years ago at the hands of an ex-friend). i have an old 24/2.8D and that thing is teeny-TINY compared to a 20-25 or 14-24.
The one thing I loved about DX was how great the 50mm f/1.8 was at taking portraits. The number of great baby pictures I got of my niece with the D200, 50mm f/1.8 and an sb600 is staggering.
 
Joined
Feb 27, 2009
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phoenix
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #25
If you can deal with a little bit of flare and the limited range then you bought the perfect lens. I paid a little more than twice what you did and I still feel well bought. It's far from perfect wide open but stopped down it's sharp enough to draw blood. Through it's limited range stopped down it's as good as anything, save for flare.
The lens is listed to use the HB-1 but the HB-26 is a perfect fit and
has zero effect of the corners. This hood should help a lot. I just happened to have one and can't
remember for the life of me as why. I took the HB-1 off and the HB-26 fit and locked on.
 
Joined
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phoenix
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #26
The lens is listed to use the HB-1 but the HB-26 is a perfect fit and
has zero effect of the corners. This hood should help a lot. I just happened to have one and can't
remember for the life of me as why. I took the HB-1 off and the HB-26 fit and locked on.
Here's what it looks like.


HB-1
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HB-26
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Joined
Mar 20, 2011
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Australia
wow, that HB-26 hood actually looks like it'd be useful. the original one was heavily on the 'meh' side of the equation.

must get myself one.....
 
Joined
Jan 3, 2009
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Portland
Anyone shooting this lens on FX? How does the HB26 work on FX? I would think that it would be a no go.
 
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Nov 10, 2008
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Chicago
Nice Harley.

I am am going to get one when they have air conditioning and all the screwy drivers are off the road. long wait I am afraid.
 
Joined
Mar 27, 2008
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Chgo/Glenview. my heart, New Mexico
This lens has always interested me but it is the one item I think I would have to see and buy in person. I have never tried a push/pull zoom and have a feeling it would be one of those love it or hate it relationships.
 
Joined
May 29, 2013
Messages
28
Location
L.A.
I've been using a 35-70 f2.8D since way back in the N90S film camera days---still works great---also the old 20-35 f2.8D can be had for very decent prices---yeah, the zoom range is limited, but I find the 20-35 (30-53 on DX digital body) to be the perfect lens for photographing parties...
 
Joined
Jun 9, 2006
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1,823
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Rural Virginia
I still use mine even though I have the AF-S zooms. I find the quick zoom of this push-pull lens is really useful for events where you need to frame quickly. I agree with jyo1 about the 20-35. If I ever get a DF my MF primes and the AF 20-35 & 35-70 will be the glass I use.
 
Joined
Aug 25, 2017
Messages
19
Location
Melbourne, Fl
Real Name
Danny W. Burdick
I read about the poor man's holy trinity and bought my first one the 35-70 2.8D
I found out I got "taken" as the shutter aperture was frozen in place...
I loved the idea of this lens so much I went ahead like these guys that restore old cars
I sent it off to Nikon authorized photo service "APS" and told them to rebuild it
regardless of cost....
When I got the bill for over $400 I just thought
Well no one else out there has a new one....
I never take it off my D700 unless I need some extremely exotic lens requirements.
If you get the chance to try one I think you will be surprised at what this little lens can do.
 

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Joined
Aug 25, 2017
Messages
19
Location
Melbourne, Fl
Real Name
Danny W. Burdick
What everyone with this lens is looking for is which one to use with an FX camera at the 35mm setting without vignetting.

FAQ's
HB-1 works but is plastic
HB-15,HN-22,HN-23,HN-24,HB-26 and the FOTGA 62mm screw-in metal one all vignette.

The HB-1 does not and is 3.8"x3.8"x1"
Based on size the one's near are

HB-26 which is 3.8"x3.8"x2.9"
HB-15 3.8"x3.8"x3"
HN-22 3.4"x3.4"x1.2"

I bought the FOTGA metal one from Amazon and it fit perfectly wow what a shock after a shoot when I had to dump every third shot because of vignetting only at 35mm, I thought it was because it was too deep but turns out it's way smaller diameter brings it closer to the outer edges of the lens.
 
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