Lences reviews

AF-S NIKKOR 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 ED VR lens review

To put it in a nutshell, this is a dream of any traveler with an FX-camera. Nikon 28-300 can substitute the whole kit of lenses that you had to take with you before.

In relation to FX-formats Nikkor 28-300 is the same as Nikkor 18-200 for DX. Due to a crop-factor for a DX-camera there is no sense in buying Nikon 28-300 but it will work perfectly in any case.

The lens is sufficient for the majority of situations, thus, you will not have to take with you more than necessary and change the lens at the most inappropriate moment. The widest range of focal distances will make it possible to take photos in narrow streets at a wide angle

as well as go unnoticed taking photos with a telephoto from a large distance:

Frankly speaking, I think that the pot-bellied noticed me but did not show that because I was not of grey colour and without a tail.

In relation to strong points of the lens apart from versatility it stands to mention an extraordinary sharpness of it. You will hardly feel the difference comparing it with 50mm f/1.8.  The sharpness is decreased close to the edges of the photo. But do not forget that the sharpness of your photo depends on the lens last of all.

VR in the name means a stabilizer, it really helps in case of long focal distances.

ED are low-dispersive elements that help you to get rid of color bleeding.

Built-in motor makes it possible for an autofocus to work on any camera. The speed of autofocus is moderate but sufficient in the majority of cases. Sometimes the autofocus is lost when you are too far from the focus at a big focal distance but that is not too bad it is possible to snatch the initiative and help your camera using a focus ring, at this there is no need to switch anything.

The outer glass is not rotated that is why there is no inconvenience with polarizing and graduated filters. The diameter of filters is 77 mm which is very good.

There is a catch on the body that blocks a zoom at 28 mm, but I do not use it as the lens does not go out being in the vertical position.

Macro is very good in spite of the fact that it is not a macro lens (magnification 1:3:2).

It will be even more interesting with macro-rings.

There are weak points as well – strong distortion at the upper and low limits of focal distances. On the one hand, that is important as you buy Nikon 28-300 to take photos both at 28 mm and 300 mm and not at somewhere in the middle. On the other hand, if you take photos with a digital camera you can correct distortion easily using Photoshop, as for me, I prefer to use DxO in relation to the whole photo at once.

One more fundamental defect is the lens weight.

My physically weak neck carries nearly 800 g without any pleasure but that is the price for versatility. On the other hand, the weight of 28-300 is a little bit bigger than the weight of Nikon 70-300VR, but together with this it is much smaller in size! There are only two advantages left concerning 70-300VR, they are the absence of distortion and its price (it is twice as cheap).

For what I do not recommend this lens:

1. When you need a very wide angle. In such situations 28 mm is not enough. Try Nikkor 17-35, or Nikkor 16-35.

2. If you take photos of some sporting events and the light is bad. The stabilizer will help you to take the photos of a landscape but not the objects moving in the darkness.

The lens suits perfectly for all the rest. Sporting events are not a problem in case the light is good:

Interiors (I can’t call such a public lavatory on 49 floor in some other way):

“I’ll go to the interior….”

Panorama is also a piece of cake. Together with this, it is not necessary for a panorama to be horizontal. It could be vertical as well. This is a panorama of 8 horizontal photos located one below the other:

This is the photo of the highest building in Hong Kong, taken from the opposite side of the channel on 300 mm. If you are interested there is an album with all the photos: http://lospopadosos.com/photos/hongkong2010

The lens could be used for an underwater camera work, it can be placed easily in cheap aqua-boxes.

The price of the lens is about 1000$ and it will hardly drop in the near future having in mind the story with Nikon 18-200.


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