Nikon Lens Review: 70-200mm f/2.8G AF-S ED VR II

    By | Lenses | Reviews | 20/03/2013 13:53pm
    4 Comments

    The Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G AF-S ED VR II is a stunning telephoto lens, but can it still come up trumps with a teleconverter fitted? Find out in our 70-200mm f/2.8G Nikon lens review.

    Nikon Lens Review: 70-200mm f/2.8G AF-S ED VR II

    Price: £1600 / $2400

    The 70‑200mm telephoto range and fast f/2.8 aperture that’s constant throughout the zoom range make this Nikon telephoto lens popular with professionals.

    Image quality is spectacular too, with excellent sharpness and contrast. It’s matched by fully professional build quality, including a rubber seal on the mounting plate.

    At 206mm long and just over 1.5kg, the lens is manageable. The zoom mechanism is fully internal, so the lens doesn’t extend physically at longer focal lengths.

    However, to boost the Nikon’s reach to a 140-400mm super-telephoto range, you need to fit a Nikon TC-20E AF-S Teleconverter III.

    This extends the physical length of the lens by 45mm and doesn’t have a rubber weather seal. It’s expensive, though, costing £400 ($470).

    Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G Performance

     

    Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G Performance

    Autofocus speed is rapid with or without a teleconverter, but the largest effective aperture shrinks to f/5.6 with the converter.

    The biggest disappointment is that with the teleconverter fitted, sharpness is worse than with the Nikon 80‑400mm at short and mid-range zoom settings. It’s only fractionally better at 400mm.

    Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G Image Quality

     

    Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G Image Quality: Fringing

    f/5.6

    There’s little colour fringing without the teleconverter, but with one fitted it’s the worst lens on test at 400mm.

    Lab Test
    Fringing at wide: 0.21
    Fringing at mid: 0.16
    Fringing at tele: 1.33

     

    Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G Image Quality: Distortion

    f/5.6

    Distortions are minimal, and when you fit the teleconverter there’s practically no distortion at mid and long zoom settings.

    Lab Test
    Distortion at wide: 0.25
    Distortion at mid: -0.06
    Distortion at tele: 0

    Image Quality Verdict
    This lens would get a five-star rating on its own but only merits three points when used with the 2x teleconverter. We’ve averaged this out to four stars.

    Nikon lens review: the verdict

     

    Features: 5/5
    Build quality: 5/5
    Image quality: 4/5
    Value for money: 4/5

    Overall: 4/5

    We Say
    Great on its own, the 70-200mm is somewhat less stellar with a 2x teleconverter attached.

    READ MORE

    Nikon 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6: the old and new Nikon lenses compared
    Nikon AF-S 70-200mm f/4G ED VR review
    Nikon Lens Review: 17-55mm f/2.8G AF-S IF-ED


    Posted on Wednesday, March 20th, 2013 at 1:53 pm under Lenses, Reviews. You can subscribe to comments.

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