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NikonAF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens
 
4.8

(based on 175 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (148)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (22)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

99%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Fast / accurate auto-focus (119)
  • Lightweight (107)
  • Consistent output (76)
  • Nice bokeh (76)
  • Strong construction (58)

Cons

  • Poor in low light (6)

Best Uses

  • Landscape/scenery (95)
  • Wildlife photos (86)
  • Sports/action (73)
  • Weddings (53)
  • Macro photography (18)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (69), Semi-pro photographer (41), Pro photographer (21), Casual photographer (7)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (133)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

More then met my expectations

As an amateur photographer making occasional images of friends performing in theatrical settings, I purchased this lens for a game safari trip over the holiday. I searched for a lens that would not be...Read complete review

As an amateur photographer making occasional images of friends performing in theatrical settings, I purchased this lens for a game safari trip over the holiday. I searched for a lens that would not be too heavy to carry a long distance, provide adequate focal length from a vehicle, with vibration reduction built in, allow sharp captures in low light (outdoors at dusk and twilight) and be compatible with my D90. After comparing various Nikkor focal lengths for several months against an f/2.8 lower priced third party lens, to my surprise and delight I stumbled across this sturdy, lightweight AF-S 70-200mm f/4 telephoto 15 days before departure. Not only did this lense perform better then expected, but in my small hands the size and weight was as comfortable as shooting with the 18-105mm kit lense and at half the cost of the Nikkor f/2.8 with the same focal length. B&H delivered on time during their busiest holiday season. I returned home with stunning, sharp images that I am proud to share.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Does not replace the 70-200 f/2.8

I had great hopes for this lens to cut weight for hiking relative to the f/2.8, the greater capability of the VRIII, and the lack of focus breathing at close distances. There...Read complete review

I had great hopes for this lens to cut weight for hiking relative to the f/2.8, the greater capability of the VRIII, and the lack of focus breathing at close distances. There is much to like about this lens. It feels great on a D800, and encourages one to pick up and just shoot. The VRIII is quite impressive. An added bonus is that with VRIII on a Nikon V1, it is a spectacular lens (a combination I also tested). Taking closeups is a joy with the lack of focus breathing and close focus. Zoom and focus controls feel quite nice.

But the image quality is distinctly different than that of the 70-200 f/2.8. I did extensive testing, from brick walls (orthogonal and at an angle to measure symmetry), and many distant shots (I mainly do landscapes). I tried two samples from B&H, as well as a rental, after finding some significant sample variations; such variations expressed themselves as asymmetric sharpness in different corners at different zoom lengths. I concluded that on a D800 sensor, 1) the micro-contrast was significantly better with my f/2.8 lens (at equivalent f-stop, of course), and 2) the image quality consistency across the frame and corner-to-corner sharpness and presence was just not a match for the f/2.8. One very surprising handling issue was how difficult it was to focus (LV, manual) the f/4 at long zoom at long distances, relative to the f/2.8, due to the short throw of the focus.

The final thing that convinced me to keep my f/2.8 and not purchase the f/4 lens was the build quality. The f/2.8 lens is built like a tank and I think will last far longer and, critically, stay in alignment better over the years of packing it around in places and bouncing in 4WD vehicles. Yes, my aging back would have loved to choose the f/4, but the quality of images from the f/2.8, across the frame and at all zoom settings is clearly stronger. I have had my f/2.8 in the rain and snow, and never had an issue. I will find something else to omit form my pack to drop the weight.

This is not to say the f/4 is not a great lens - it is clearly superior to the 70-300 VR (which I also have and tested), but the f/4 is not magic and you do get what you pay for. One item of advice for f/4 purchasers - the tripod collar is not really needed (the lens balances just like the 70-300 VR), and, in fact, the balance point is too far forward for anything but a very light DSLR body. The collar would seem to be a very poor balance for a D4/D3X, etc. I was surprised by this.

Reviewed by 175 customers

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(0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
3.0

My copy was too soft at f/4

By Wayne

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

Site Member

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

I was exited to receive this lens but sadly the images at f/4 were too soft for my taste. My old 70-200 f/2.8 VRII (wish I had kept) was noticeably sharper at f/2.8 than this lens was at f/4. In fact, all of my other lenses are sharper at f/2.8 than this one was at f/4. Seriously, at f/4 this lens should be sharper than all my other lenses at f/2.8. This is the first time I've ever had to return a Nikon lens because of it's lack of sharpness. I had to stop down 2 or so stops before I could get satisfying results. I know f/4 is the not the optimum f-stop for total sharpness but again, it should have been better. The rest of the lens itself is great. The zoom and focus rings have the smoothest action I've ever seen in a tele-zoom. The lens handles great and the weight is perfect. It's much easier to haul around than the 70-200 f/2.8 VRII but now I kind of regret selling it.

 
5.0

Great lens

By Tim

from Atglen, PA

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

I just recently got this lens a few weeks ago, and it is by far my best lens. The quality of pictures and fast focus makes it my most often used lens. Chose this over the 2.8 lens, only because of cost. Feels great in the hands and you can actually feel the quality. Can't wait to really put it to work.

 
5.0

Great short telephoto zoom

By Witt

from West Hills, CA

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

I have only had this lens for a few weeks, maybe a hundred shots taken, but so far a nice addition to my kit. I am using it on a D750, so far only for outdoor work. The lens is surprisingly light and easy to shoot hand held. Good sharpness and color.

(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great Lens

By John

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

Like many others it was a choice between this and the 70-200 2.8. At 71 my back cast the deciding vote. I have shot about 100 pictures with it and I am very pleased. As always good service from B&H.

(5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

I recommend this lens.

By Larrys

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

I just got this lens less about two weeks ago and Haven't had the time to really learn it and appreciate its excellent quality. I gave it 4 stars, really 4.5, because I haven't had it long enough to know it well yet. The lens is light for its size and easily manageable. I haven't seen a need for the collar yet, but may change my mind. The zoom and focus dials work with ease. I've already had compliments on the images I've created with this lens. I use a Nikon D7000, which is a DX camera. Therefore, this lens operates as a 105-300mm zoom, quite a long focal length which I need to adapt to with alternate lenses at shorter focal lengths. I had been using the 18-200mm f.3.5-5.6, but the sharpness and optics of this 70-200 f.4 are far superior. I don't think I'll miss not having the f.2.8 because most of my images are taken with a tripiod. This lens lives up to its excellent reviews..

 
5.0

Lightweight

By Timothy

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

Lens is very light and sharp as a tack after calibrated.

(5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Tack sharp landscape images with a DSLR with APS-C sensor

By Richard

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

I bought this lens as part of an upgrade to the lenses I use to shoot landscapes. I shoot with a Nikon D7100, with an APS-C sensor. I had read professional reviews citing lab reports showing that, although this lens may create images displaying slight softness around the edges when used with a full-size sensor, it is tack sharp throughout when used with an APS-C sensor. That has been my experience. I recently returned from shooting landscapes in widely varying conditions in Southern Utah and Northern Arizona: slot canyons, Bryce NP, Zion NP, badlands, the "Navajo wave," and other locations. On my computer, the images are exceptionally sharp edge to edge. Although I shot in some challenging lighting conditions, I have noticed no chromatic aberration, and the very slight lens distortion is easily correctible with a click in Lightroom. And with the Vello tripod collar, the lens sits secure and nicely balanced on my tripod. I would recommend this lens without hesitation to anyone who shoots landscapes with a DSLR camera with an APS-C sensor.

(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Experienced User -- Delighted with this lens

By Leon

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

I am delighted with the photos the lens is capable of. Since 1995, I have used and then traded in a Pentax 80-200 (approx.; can't recall), three consumer zooms ~70-300 (Vivitar, Canon, and Nikon), the Canon 70-200/2.8L I IS, and the Nikon current 80-200/2.8 and 80-400 VR, first version. The best of those was, of course, the Canon 70-200. Not having had any tele-zoom for two years, I was anxious to get one, and this 70-200/4 VR is very, very good; I'm placing it second in line with these that I've owned. It could be better than the 1990s' Canon — I cannot compare them directly. Major lens reviewers (e.g., Thom, Lloyd, Ming) all agree that this 70-200/4 is a solid performer, with very nice qualities — ones that we did not even have in decades past. So, this 70-200 is about as good as you can have now, at around this price. Once it arrives, you will need to call upon your best technique. Using the various autofocus modes on Nikon bodies is a challenge in itself; this lens is able to work very well with current autofocus technology. I'm using the lens on a D810. I suggest using a monopod whenever possible, instead of hand holding. The lens seems about as heavy as the D810, and if I had more cash I would get the Kirk lens collar for this model. My hawk picture is a grab shot taken during my first outing with the lens and camera, with VR, monopod, 175 mm, ISO 400, f9, 1/320 s, with manually assisted autofocus. Using just the viewfinder and at a moment's notice, it is very difficult to focus on a bird's head at this distance.

(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Excellent performance

By Ken

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

This lens is almost as sharp as my 35mm F1.8 prime lens and is sharper edge to edge than my 24-70 F2.8. Seems very well built.

 
5.0

Great, Sharp, Light

By Tom S.

from Los Angeles, CA

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

Great, sharp, loving it, zero to complain about.

Obviously it is not as light-sensitive as the f/2.8, but it significantly lighter and cheaper. Very much recommended.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

High Quality Lens

By DelMar_Photog

from San Diego, CA

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

Just returned from my first full photo trip using the lens. It was a big debate whether I would get the AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR or this lens. What decided me is my usage. I do mostly landscape and this lens is half the price and 20.5 ounces lighter. I decided on the lens I would likely put in my back without fear of the weight getting to me on a long day.

My experience with the lens was good. First thing I notice is the zoom ring is absolutely smooth when rotated. The VR worked well freeing me from carrying a tripod most of the time. Most of the time I had this lens and the AF-S NIKKOR 16-35mm f/4.0 G ED VR in my backpack along with one other situational lens (FYI I am using the 16-35 more lately, not a great architectural lens, but for nature awesome). If I were doing a lot of people shots I am sure I would want the faster f/2.8 version of this lens, but for landscape and occasional people shots this is the winner for me.

 
5.0

Great Lens!

By South Texas Mike

from Texas

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

With today's high ISO cameras the need for a 2.8 lens is not as necessary as it once was. This lens is light, sharp, and half the price of the 2.8 version. Love this lens. Just do a check on 500px or Flickr for this lens and you'll see there are tons of amazing images made with the f/4 version of the 70-200.

(7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I love this lens!

By FlyGuy

from South Florida

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

This completes my f/4 trifecta. I love all 3 of the f/4 lens'. I should have gotten this lens first, instead of last, I love it. The focus and zoom rings are extremely smooth and light pressure to move. The zoom ring is to the back so it falls into your fingers perfectly. The lens is very well balanced on my D750. The lens is thinner than I expected and is a little longer than I expected. It is sharp as a tack.

 
5.0

Lives up to rave reviews

By Kengineer

from Northern NJ

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

Replaced my kit lens with this one for telephoto needs. What a difference! Put it on my D5300 when the DX lenses didn't seem to measure up to the capabilities of this lens. Clarity, faster speed and quick focusing are great. Weight is noticeably greater than the kit, but you get what you pay for. Absolutely no regrets on the change.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Light, fast, accurate

By Birdart

from Houstin

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

I didn't try it extensively yet, but in a few trials it's exceptional in every way - tack sharp, quick on D500 and D810. And much lighter than my old 70-200/2.8 that I exchanged to this fantastic glass.

(9 of 22 customers found this review helpful)

 
3.0

Not as good as everyone is saying.

By REGGIE

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

Site Member

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

I had the 70-200 2.8 and sold it because of the weight and then bought the 70-200 f4. I really tried to like it !!!! during the day or full sun the lens works good not as fast to focus as the 2.8 but I could live with it.It was fun and very light. VR was very good and I was able to approach the subject very close . But as soon as you start to loose the light focusing was hit and miss, trying to take pictures at a softball game with the lighting system they had in the park was not possible ,had to keep shutter speed to 1/120 sec at 12,000 iso on my D750.
Long story short I sold my Nikon70-200 F4 at a small loss and bought another Nikon 70-200 2.8. Well at the same park I was able to shoot at 1/1000 sec and focus was spot on , I only had to use 8000 iso on my d750 and the images were tack sharp.
Live and learn
People say it's only one stop difference ? but I have been taking sport pictures over 15 years in doors and dim lighting outdoors and it seems a lot more than one stop. There is other factors involved that people don't realize.

(12 of 12 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Mistake? Nope

By Kevin

from Undisclosed

Site Member

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

When I went for the lighter weight and $700 less than the 2.8 I thought maybe I was making a mistake. However, I am glad I bought this lightweight beauty. I put it on my D7000, which I was about to get rid of because the pictures weren't coming out sharp enough for this Virgo with my old lenses. Wow, all of a sudden things were tack sharp and the bokeh at F4 was great. On my D800 and D810 this lens is amazing, though when traveling in Africa I do long for a longer zoom. In other reviews people have mentioned that the light weight makes for using the lens in many more situations than one might with the heavier 2.8. I agree completely. I use it in the studio at 85 and 100, I street shoot with it, I use it on safari where with the 36 MP of my D810 I can crop a square centimeter out of a full frame and still get a great photo. I've shot the 2.8. Hey, it's magnificent, but for the weight and the time I'd really need it? Maybe when I retire and shoot wedding instead of traipsing through swamps around the world. Great lens, can't say enough good things about it.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Nikon 70-200mm f/4 ED VR Sharp as a tack

By Slermj

from Yorba Linda, CA

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

This super sharp lens has proven to be very versatile as it substitutes for other primes that I own in the similar focal lengths. So far I do not notice any degradation of IQ comparing this zoom to some of my primes. At 200mm it is a bit soft but still decent. I will be taking this lens with me on my upcoming cruise to Hawaii. Thinking about adding a Nikon tc20 (latest version) to give me more reach but skeptical having to shoot at F/8 with my D750. I also do not want to degrade the image quality with a teleconverter. Still considering my options.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

A very decent semi-pro lens for the value….

By Dave

from Clermont, Fl.

Verified Buyer

Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

I had first purchased the Nikon 70-200mm f2.8 Nikon VR lens to update my much older Nikon(non-VR) f2.8 80-200mm "D" zoom lens ( with no tripod collar). I had some focus issues with that new purchase, so I returned that lens and decided to go with the 70-200 f4 ED VR and see how it compared. Although the f4 is a darker lens, it really doesn't matter that much for me, with what I generally shoot, and the lighter weight as well as more compact size, from the f2.8 version, was a welcome feature. Resolution-wise, Im very satisfied with the f4 lens…both close up to the full 200mm zoom range. With the minimal testing Ive done so far, it seems a very sharp lens and well constructed . A much easier lens to lug around all day, when handheld.
The VR does seem excellent in freezing excess movement…in fact, steady's action better than any other VR lens Ive used, thus far….if Im not mistaken , by 5 - f stops!

I also purchased the more economic accessory tripod collar offered by B&H for this lens ( VELLO), and it too appears to be well manufactured and seems a good fit….functional and decently machined. I can't see spending the $200 for the Nikon collar version.

 
5.0

Great lens

By Ted

from San Diego, CA

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Consistent Output
  • Durable
  • Nice Bokeh

Cons

    Best Uses

      Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Lens:

      Great lens! Appears well made, much lighter than its big brother.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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