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Wanting a light and fun lens...

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by BourbonCowboy, Jul 29, 2007.

  1. Hopefully, within the next month or so, I'll be completing my 2-lens, light and fun kit. This kit contains a D70, SB-400, 18-55, and a lens-to-be-named-later. And that, my friends, is the point of this post.

    I'm looking for some suggestions for a reasonably long, extraordinarily light, and particularly cheap lens. I've got two lenses in mind, but I'm very open to suggestions. Here's my ideas: either the 70-300G or the 55-200 (maybe VR).

    Just so you will know my intended uses for this lens...

    I want something light and cheap because my students will be using this for yearbook shots. Last year, I allowed them to use my D200 with the 70-200 and Beast. I wouldn't mind letting this happen again, except for the fact that they really rolled up the shutter count on the camera. This year, I'll have a D70 for them to use instead. Also, I'd like a light kit to travel with. The lenses don't have to be tack sharp, but they need to be fairly reasonable. I'll carry this kit with me when I walk out of the house going anywhere, when I'm on my boat, or when I just don't want to carry a bag full of heavy gear.

    I've gotten some great advice here over the last couple years. So, once again, I call upon the Cafe faithful to guide me in this decision. Oh yeah...I realize that I could just get the 18-200VR and be done with it, but I'm looking to go cheap on this one. Any ideas?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 29, 2007
  2. Ghunger


    Apr 2, 2007
    Seattle, WA
    Does it need to be a zoom? Was thinking an 180 f/2.8 would be a good walk around lens, not too expensive (esp. used) and very good IQ.
  3. Yep...I want versatility.
  4. TVayos

    TVayos Guest

    If your looking for light and fun I can recommend the 35mm F2. Its light, very fun and size of the glass doesn't drive the smiles from peoples faces.

    I am looking for my second piece of glass. Still have not decided but it looks like the 85mm 1.8, good luck.
  5. 1FASTZ


    Jan 25, 2006
    Cincinnati, OH
    I don't own one, but I'm getting the impression that the 70-300VR is great lens...
  6. Cope


    Apr 5, 2007
    Houston, Texas

    If those pictures, especially #2. don't convince someone to buy the 50-150, they don't need a camera anyway. Very nice!
  7. Hi Mark...
    For the price, the 55-200VR would be hard to beat, but if you come across a 28-200G (only available used now), this is a very sharp lens wide open even at 200mm. It's light, compact, has a good FL and isn't an expensive lens. But this lens does an excellent job at the long end and is very good below 55mm if stopped down a little. Just a suggestion...

    Here is a sample...

    D50~28-200G @ 200mm, f/5.6
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    Nikon D50~28-200 f/3.5-5.6G @ 150, 1/160sec, f/5.6, EV -0.3, ISO200
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  8. Gale


    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Great shots
    Beautiful dog you have

    Everybody loves a Koala bear:>)) Super shot

    That 55-200 VR is pumping out some beautiful images
    70-300 VR is a great lens also
  9. Thanks for the replies so far. However, I'm not interested in spending for the Sigma 50-150. Same goes for the 70-300VR. The 35 f/2 would be nice for my serious kit, but isn't what I'm looking for in my fun kit. I'm wanting something that - if dropped overboard - wouldn't cause me to shed too many tears. The 28-200G looks interesting.
  10. I'd go one of two ways:

    * Sharpest all round: 55-200 VR

    * Most verstatile: Sigma 70-300 APO Macro

    The former performs by test and reputation well beyond its price of $250.

    The latter gives you reach, pretty good IQ even out to the mid-200's, and has an excellent long macro (at f13). At $180 it is the value champ, IMO.
  11. jhpate


    Jul 14, 2007
    texarkana, texas
    those sigma pics sure look nice!
  12. ultimind


    May 13, 2007
    Cleveland, OH
    The 55-200VR is super cheap considering it's got VR and AF-S. I would consider the 28-200 if your school has decent lighting. I know my high school was deadly for any lens slower than about F4.. for reasonably low-noise ISO settings atleast. (<ISO640).

    The 28-200 will give you the best all-in-one cheap zoom that produces beautifully sharp images too. And just for safety, you'd probably want to minimize the amount of lens swapping that's going on... so an all-in-one zoom may be your best bet.
  13. I had a Sigma 70-300 non-APO (macro super II) and guess I lucked out and got a good one, since the image quality was superb up to 200mm, and still very decent to 300mm. It was very light and compact and had good close focus ability. In theory and according to people on the net, the APO on average is superior, but also more expensive (still quite cheap though).

    The 55-200vr would be a prime choice as well, as the VR would make it quite useful.

    I'd say neither is a "mistake buy" unless you need a large aperture.

  14. Bokeh isn't bad either. Just something else for my feeble mind to process. I figured this decision would be easy. Turns out I was wrong.
  15. Get the Nikkor 50mm f1:8. It's only a hundred bucks, it's light, it's sharp and it'll teach them to use the Nike zoom.

  16. rubendparra

    rubendparra Guest

    my vote is for the 70-210 f4-f5.6 mm you can't beat the quality/price .

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