Pre buyers remorse 24-70 f2.8

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Sep 27, 2008
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In another thread I have decided on the Nikon 24-70 f 2.8 lens. Currently I have the 18-70 and the 70-300 and I need a better low light lens. I have looked around at primes and haven't found one I like. I like the option of being able to change the focal length on the fly.

The camera store has the 24-70 and the wife gave the OK to spend the $1900 on it. I'm having a hard time getting excited about it though and it's all from the price. Is this lens really that great?

My plan is to upgrade from the D80 to either the replacement for the 300s or the 700 next year at the earliest. That means I would use this lens on my D80 for a year.

Other then the f2.8 for the lower light am I going to see any IQ improvement or no due to it being on a D80.

I also get cold feet over people mentioning the weight. I'm getting in my mind this is a brick and I'm going to get tired of carrying it around.

My objective is this would replace the 18-70 and this lens would now be going everywhere along with the 70-300.

I also read about the fact it has lack of VR on it. My current 18-70 lens doesn't have VR and I have no problems. Is the concern due to the added weight? I know when shooting at f2.8 I would need to have it on a tripod and I'm fine with that. Other then that I would be hand holding it.

I guess I'm nervous since 2k is a lot of money (add the filters) and this would become my most expensive piece of gear. I don't want to make a bad mistake and go oh poo now I have wasted 2k and I hate the lens if you know what I mean.

Help me out here.......
 
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
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You'll be blown away with the images, even on your D80. The 24-70 has something in the IQ that I can only describe as magic. Don't listen to anybody saying it is a brick: it's 2lb, vs. 1.6lb of your current 70-300VR, barely noticeable. I never needed VR on my 24-70. Go for it and don't wait until it sells for $2400. It's not possible to hate this lens.
 
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Unless if the lens sold since yesterday I called at 5 pm tonight and had a rep place it on hold. My normal rep wasn't in so I didn't talk much other then to see when my rep is in and asked them to put it on hold. As of 9am tomorrow it would be mine if I can get rid of the cold feet.
 
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Jun 21, 2008
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Minnesota
This is a really nice lens. The quality and build is superb-as you'd expect from a high end Nikkor. Keep in mind that this would be a 36-105 on your D80. Image quality is very high so don't have second thoughts about it. I don't consider it a heavy lens, but then I'm used to handling a 400 2.8! And while I use telephotos more than wide angles, I have no plans to replace this lens. I also wouldn't worry about the cost(since you have the green light). Because of what happened in Japan, commodities like lenses with be more difficult to come by in the coming months. If you don't like it, you won't have a hard time selling it(and depending on availability) you might even make $$$ on it. Not saying you will, but the market dictates those things. VR was not a deal breaker for me because I don't use it. I have other lenses that have it, I just don't see the need for it. If the lights too low, I use a tripod. If the shutter speed is fast enough VR could complicate things. As for filters, the only one I use is a POL and since most of my leses have 77mm, I only need the one.
 
Joined
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Save your money and get the Nikon 17-55mm 2.8 in like new condition (used market). You'll miss the wide end. Perhaps, pickup a fast prime. f/2.8 is not that fast.
 
Joined
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Los Angeles, CA
$1900... ugh
Knowing what I know now, I (personally) wouldn't spend 1900 on it (I did once---paid 1800 brand new) I'm not saying it's a bad lens, it's a very good lens.. it's just that I think you can do better budget-wise, for what you need. For that kind of money, you can even go with the 17-55 2.8 and 80-200 2.8 for low-light. Just my opinion.. you can disregard it if you really want the lens. :smile:

Also, if you're willing to buy used, you can get the 24-70 for around $1500 or less.
 
Joined
Jul 4, 2007
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Redmond, WA
Cold feet is understandable. It's a lot of money.

Only you can decide if it's too heavy for you. I find its weight and bulk worth it for the quality it produces.

I don't want to overbuild your expectations, but you will definitely see a difference in the technical quality of your photos, even with a D80. You should see improved colors and contrast and some improved sharpness (18-70 is already pretty sharp if you have a good copy). And of course if you shoot at f/2.8 and even f/4 at longer focal lengths, you'll get some nice bokeh. There should be more "pop" to the images.

When I first rented a 70-200/2.8 VR for my D80 a few years ago, it was my first taste of top-flight pro glass. After shooting at an event, I viewed them on my monitor at home. They just popped out at me. I actually cursed out loud with no one nearby. Because I knew then I was going to spend a lot of money on pro glass.

It'll take some getting used to the lens, especially trying to land precise focus for a shallower depth of field at f/2.8. Perhaps starting with f/4 will make it easier.

As others have stated, the 24mm might not be wide enough in some cases.

One thing about the 24-70 on a DX camera -- it does very nice portraits. The 70mm portrait length is long enough for most portraits without making the nose look bigger. The 17-55/2.8 I had wasn't quite long enough for that, I had to stand further away and either crop later or accept more of the subject in the photo.

Also -- having owned both brand-new 17-55's and 24-70's and used them extensively, I agree with the "professional lens tests" that as good as the 17-55 is, the 24-70 is even better. Especially at f/2.8.
 
Joined
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Southern Cal
Why not go for a good clean used 28-70.

I don't know that there is that much difference in the two since the 28-70 is about half as much as a new 24-70.

The 28-70 is my favorite and most used lens. Image quality is phenomenal.
 
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There is a reason it's $1900....

(and not entirely because of greed):biggrin:

But there are some great reviews out on the newer 24-120 f4, if you can get by with f4. It's not a 24-70 IQ imho, but it's a lot less money.
 
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Rockville, MD
Personally I dislike 2.8 zooms and no longer own any. When it comes down to it, 2.8 really isn't all that fast, and 2.8 zooms tend to be on the heavy side and lack range. 24mm isn't all that wide on DX, and 70mm isn't all that long, either. My choice would be the new 24-120mm f/4 VR for $700 less, and then pair it with a 50mm f/1.4G for $550 and pocket $150. An f/1.4 is a truly "fast" lens, and it's nice to be able to get all the way out to 120mm. The 24-120 is 200g lighter as well, which is significant, and it has VR. Another option would be to get the far cheaper 50mm f/1.8D for $135, and then you'd still have enough money leftover for a nice ultra-wide lens like the Tokina 12-24mm, which pairs up perfectly with the 24-120.

Just my $0.02
 
Joined
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The 24-70 is a good lens , but if you do get it , you may want to hold on to your 18-70 until you go FX.

I have no plans on selling my old lens as I upgrade. When the new camera arrives the D80 would get handed down to the wife so she would use the lens.
 
Joined
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There is a reason it's $1900....

(and not entirely because of greed):biggrin:

But there are some great reviews out on the newer 24-120 f4, if you can get by with f4. It's not a 24-70 IQ imho, but it's a lot less money.

f4 won't work. My current 18-70 is f3.5 and for photographing the snow cats in low light it just doesn't cut it. The 2.8 would give me one more stop and while not hitting the home run it will help. The next generation camera will help as well and would be the next piece of the puzzle.
 
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Personally I dislike 2.8 zooms and no longer own any. When it comes down to it, 2.8 really isn't all that fast, and 2.8 zooms tend to be on the heavy side and lack range. 24mm isn't all that wide on DX, and 70mm isn't all that long, either. My choice would be the new 24-120mm f/4 VR for $700 less, and then pair it with a 50mm f/1.4G for $550 and pocket $150. An f/1.4 is a truly "fast" lens, and it's nice to be able to get all the way out to 120mm. The 24-120 is 200g lighter as well, which is significant, and it has VR. Another option would be to get the far cheaper 50mm f/1.8D for $135, and then you'd still have enough money leftover for a nice ultra-wide lens like the Tokina 12-24mm, which pairs up perfectly with the 24-120.

Just my $0.02

Good ideas but 1) I want to stick to Nikon brand lens. 2) When I look at 100 pictures that I took here is the break down of percentages. Left is the focal length and right is the % of pictures. So 20% (20 pictures of 100) were at 18mm.

As you will see the 50mm has a low amount. I actually started with looking at that lens. From there I went to the 17-55 DX lens. I was then looking at the 14-24 lens but for the $1900 I couldn't feel I would get enough use out of it.

That is what pushed me to the 24-70. It would match close to the 18-70 that I have. The 23% of photos I would lose would bump up to the 24mm.

There is a prime 24mm lens but I believe that is around $2300 and I would really have problems buying that knowing I wouldn't use it all the time. I like the 24-70 since as I mentioned I'm close to what I currently use.

18 20
22 3
24 4
25 5
27 4
28 1
29 5
31 2
34 5
35 3
38 3
40 3
44 2
46 1
48 1
52 3
55 2
56 2
62 2
65 1
70 13
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2006
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On a Big Island Down Under...
If it's worrying you that much, well no matter how good it is, it will always be on your mind.
Just a suggestion, why not get a Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 as these are a 1/4 of the price and even cheaper used and do about 90-95% of what the Nikon can do.
And after using it, you can then decide if it's the way you want to go, plus it so much lighter than the 24-70.
But you may then decide it's all you want, and then you'll have $1500 to spend on more lenses... :rolleyes:...:smile:... :biggrin::biggrin::biggrin:...
 
Joined
Jan 27, 2008
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North Carolina
I'll point out the obvious here....

Although it's $1900, you're not going to loose $1900 if you decide you don't like it, and decide to sell it. Sure, you'll probably lose a few hundred bucks, depending on how long you have it.(be sure and save the box and all OEM paperwork)

If you rented the 24-70 for a month, you'd probably spend an equal amount of money to the loss you'd incur selling it. And you'd send it back to the rental company and have nothing but the images left over after 30 days.

I'll bet you can use it for 6 months or longer, and with proper care and feeding, not lose more than a few hundred if you decide to sell it.

I own this lens. It's a special lens and one of my favorites. If you can afford it without issues, you'll always regret NOT having it.

Go for it.:biggrin:
 
Joined
Dec 19, 2006
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New York
It's a great lens and the auto focus is very fast and accurate. I only sold mine because of lack of use.
 
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Glens Falls, NY
When I'm not sure about whether I really want to buy a certain lens, I rent one for a week and give it a real good workout. Sure, it's an added expense, but I think it's worthwhile for peace of mind.
 

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