Sunday, November 27, 2011

Nikkor AF 180mm f/2.8

Spectacularly sharp and contrasty tele lens, for specific people and specific needs

+ not too large for a fast tele (bit heavy though)
+ superb image quality, no flaws really. Even wide-open
+ built like a tank

- not for a general tele; only for specific missions
- no VR means tripod/monopod is a MUST
-180mm is a weird focal length - might be too short or too long (or, hopefully just right)

Sharpness and Contrast: Even wide-open, the 180mm f/2.8 is a stellar performer

The 180mm f2/.8 in its element: Freezing action in very low light

Intended Users
Great for:
  • Those needing the best and only the best image quality in a tele, no compromises thank you.
  • For fast-action events whose distance can be predicted before hand (e.g. race-car events, horse-riding, etc)
  • outdoor portraits

Not for:
  • general purpose, not even tele- general purpose; too short for birds (unless perhaps ducks in parks)
  • indoors, unless in big halls
  • people who can't/won't use a tripod/monopod. This is an unforgiving lens, it's either support or shutter speed of 1/500 and faster.

Final Verdict
A fantastic lens. But you must seriously consider whether you need to pay that much money for a lens you can use on specific occasions only. If you have another zoom tele, set it to 180mm and use that ONLY for a few days, to see for yourself. Also, consider getting a fast zoom (the older 80-200mm f/2.8 is almost as good, and much handier)

Looking for a Nikkor AF 180mm f/2.8? Check here.

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