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Keywords: Nikon Nikkor Wide Mid Tele Zoom 35mm AF-S


Roland

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 5
Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S Nikkor review by Roland
Review Date: 2/21/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $320.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp, quick auto-focus, very usable focal range (on full frame)
Cons: Maybe a little too much plastic (but quality is OK), vignetting at 24 mm and wide open

I was looking for a lens to begin with on my new D700 (full frame). I didn't want to spend 1500 $ or more for the "pro" Nikon zooms at f2,8 so I looked around for an "old" model from Nikon. I read the review from Thom Hogan about this 24-85 mm lens, and managed to find it new (!) for 320 $. (the lens not Thom !)


I'm very impressed by this little lens, the image is uniformly sharp and even wide open, the corners are OK. You can really take sharp photos wide open from 24 to 85 mm.
The AF-S is quick and silent, you simply forget it !
And the focal range is very interesting on a full frame camera.
The contrast and colours are excellent, and Ican't see any ghosting.


What is not so good : wide open at 24 mm, there is noticeable vignetting, and there is also some distorsion you can see when you take buildings or other subject with straight lines.
But I shoot allways in RAW format, and both problems can be eliminated in Capture NX.


Concerning chromatic aberration, I can see none in the photos, but it's because the D700 corrects it automatically.
When the CA correction it set to OFF in Capture NX, there is some visible in the edges at 24 mm (for example when there is a tree or an electric wire against the sky in the edge of a photo) but it's well handeld.


My conclusion : a lens to take great photos with, without having to watch on the aperture to be sure to have sharp pictures.
They are of course sharper lenses, but not with this focal range, quick AF and price !
David Bickle

Registered: August 2008
Posts: 4
Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S Nikkor review by David Bickle
Review Date: 8/9/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Sharp, light, fast
Cons: Light build,

I bought this lens years ago when I was shooting film. It has always delivered. I use it all the time for landscape. Not a pro piece of glass, but I find it a very useful tool in my bag.
glen

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 8
Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S Nikkor review by glen
Review Date: 2/4/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $200.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: A compact mid-range zoom with FX AFS ED and IF
Cons: Not a 2.8 zoom

I bought this lens used along with a used F100. It's a good FX format all rounder. I have also used it on my D200. At first I thought it was not as sharp as the 18-200 I use on the D200 only to realize that I have to watch my shutter speeds more with a non-VR lens especially at the 85 end of the zoom. I recently shot some slide film (Velvia 100) using a tripod and have found it to be a good sharp lens when used correctly (stopped down a bit). It focuses fast and has nice contrasty, saturated colors. The construction quality is similar to the 18-200 and actually a little behind the 70-300 VR. (I find I like the nice stiff zoom of the 70-300 VR better than a loose zoom.) I'd like to see the lens reviewed by SLR Gear but I realize that's fairly unlikely with it being out of production.


Many say this lens was discontinued because it is inferior to the 24-85 2.8-4, but my guess is that Nikon needed to use the production capacity to make 18-70 zooms for DSLRs, and saw a diminishing market for the 24-85. This is going to be a good all rounder for the smaller, less expensive FX format DSLR I'm waiting for.


I've used this lens more, and am very happy with the sharp, vivid results. Plus this has to be the fastest AF-S lens I have used - it focuses FAST. When used properly, this delivers better results than the 18-200. I have upped my overall rating especially considering I only paid $200 and got the hood and caps.
tommy

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 5
Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S Nikkor review by tommy
Review Date: 1/10/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $500.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: small, light, sharp, cheap(ish)
Cons:

I originally bought this lens with my D100 around four years ago. More the half the 20,000 shots I've taken with that camera were made with the 24-85.


With a Nikon-sized sensor I find myself shooting a lot of my mountain landscape work between 30mm and 70mm so this is the lens that is attached to my camera most of the time. By the time I've stopped down to get a useful depth of field this really is a very good landscape lens.


It's pretty plasticky build that has survived a lot longer and better than I expected it to. It had to go back to Nikon for service and repair after a pretty bad fall (on a tripod that got knocked over), but that's the first and only time I've managed to damage it.


AF is very fast, pretty much silent and always spot on.


Sharpness is generally very good. Every now and then, when I'm shooting at maximum aperture and focussed to infinity, I'll get a few shots that look very slightly soft in the bottom corners. When I say *slightly* soft, I mean squinting really hard at the pixels at 100% on a good monitor makes wonder if those corners could *maybe* be a tiny bit sharper. More of a subjective feeling than any obvious problem and usually impossible to tell apart from foreground softness caused by the shallow depth of field. Closed down a couple of stops it really is extremely sharp, edge to edge.


Overall it strikes me as some very nice optics that Nikon accidentally put in a cheap case. If I could afford to replace it with any lens available I'm honestly not sure that I would.


There are better lenses out there, but I've not seen many at this size, weight and price.
Matthew Saville

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 21
Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S Nikkor review by Matthew Saville
Review Date: 12/29/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $225.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Affordability, image quality, size/weight
Cons: Build quality, apeture speed

I liked this lens so much that I bought a second one when my first one broke.


So right off the bat- yes, it's not the strongest lens in the world, but then again I'm not the most delicate of photographers.


But, I'd rather carry this small, light weight lens around and replace it every few years instead of lugging around something like the 28-70. I run the risk of dropping the lens and having it break, but I'm willing to take that risk.


This lens is part of what I consider the ultimate nature photography setup- the 12-24 DX, this 24-85 AFS, and the 80-400 VR. All of those lenses are incredibly sharp, while relatively small and light considering their functional range.


-Matt-
zalan

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 4
Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S Nikkor review by zalan
Review Date: 12/5/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $700.00| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: value
Cons: build quality

This was my first ever lens and the only one for a while, so I used it extensively and for every possible subject. Performance wise it offers good value, sharpness is good even wide open, color rendition and contrast are ok and you will see some distortion at the extremes even on a DX body. Flare and ghosting can be a problem if you have light sources in the picture (think night cityscapes) and also you will see some purple fringing in the high contrast areas. Generally the lens performs better on the long end, you will see some performance decrease in the wide end. The same applies for close focusing, the lens has an excellent 0.38m minimum focusing distance, but the pictures are a bit soft, though perfectly fine for an occasional close-up. Focusing is quiet, fast and accurate, no complaint here. On the other hand I was disappointed in the build quality, it started to creep and wobble just after a month use and filled up with dust pretty quickly. The strange thing is that it did not seem to affect image quality, so it is not as big problem as I first thought. I sold this lens for one reason, I did not like the focal lenght on a DX body. It is not wide enough for a mid-range zoom, and not long enough as a telephoto. Considering all the lens choices we have for the DX format, I see no reason to buy this lens for a digital body anymore.
colourperfect_co_uk

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 18
Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S Nikkor review by colourperfect_co_uk
Review Date: 11/21/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $300.00| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: good image quality particularly at 85mm, light
Cons: plastic fantastic

Bought mine when the D100 came out and it was my only lens until i got a sigma 15-30. Build quality was suspect with play in the mechanics when zoomed to 85mm.


It also seemed to leak a little oil or lubricant on the barrel. Sent it back to Nikon but they said "this is normal" ! It was otherwise reliable


Didn't feel like it would take many knocks.


Image quality was good, particularly at 85mm and the AFS focusing accurate and quick.


Colourperfect
audioguru1

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 7
Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S Nikkor review by audioguru1
Review Date: 11/20/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $400.00| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: cheap
Cons: soft & plastic

This was the first cheap AFS "g" lens. They reversed the focus and zoom rings. ops!


I purchased this lens to go with my s2 when I bought it years ago. It was reviewed well - Im not sure if I got a bad sample or what, but the quality on this lens left a lot to be desired. It was pretty soft throughout the range, especially with landscapes at infinity.


I returned this lens after a few weeks for a 50 prime and a used zoom, and was much happier.


The 18-70 kit lens is a lot better, and produces good results.
tonyj

Registered: June 2006
Posts: 1
Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S Nikkor review by tonyj
Review Date: 6/19/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $300.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Suprisingly good results for a non pro lens. Handy, convenient, lightweight.
Cons: Focus ring and zoom are reversed. No supplied bag.

I bought this lens when I took delivery of my D200. I was awaiting the arrival of a 18-200 which I had previously ordered, but needed something to play around with as I 'learned' the new camera.


Having read some highly favourable reviews on this lens from such notables pros as Thom Hogan and Ken Rockwell, I was attracted by the quality results that this lens had provided to both those reviewers as well as the current price of the lens.


The lens has proved to be a gem. Small and lightweight, it focuses quickly and at f3.5-4.5 is reasonably fast for those less than sunny days. Optically, whilst not a pro lens, the lens is still very sharp throughout its range. Only the plastic body betrays the fact that this is not a far more expensive piece of equipment.


My good lady has now snagged the lens for use on her D70s and is extremely pleased with it, making good use of it as a walk around lens. She likes the compactness of the lens which perfectly matches the 'smaller' body of the D70s. Together they have provided her with a more lightweight set up for those long hikes in the mountains.

All round the 24-85 is an excellent yet affordable mid-range zoom from Nikon.


 






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