What primary lens to use for my Nikon D80?

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by ashley_davis, Sep 21, 2010.

  1. ashley_davis

    ashley_davis TPF Noob!

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    Hey all,

    My current 18-135mm Nikon lens has been damaged so I need a new one. I'm only an amateur but enjoy photography and is a major hobby so I use my camera frequently.

    Is it worth getting a second hand lens to save a bit of money and hopefully get a slightly better one that's maybe just a bit old?

    I haven't got an alternative lens so it will be my primary one, any ideas on what focal length to go for or maybe a good site for them?

    Or maybe just give the extra for a new one?
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome aboard.

    Good quality lenses are often made pretty sturdy, so even the used ones are in workable shape. Of course, even the best lenses can be damaged, so use common sense to avoid buying a lemon.

    Lower quality (cheaper) lenses aren't as durable, so I'd be more careful about buying them used...but if they are well taken care of, these is no reason not to buy them used.
     
  3. orb9220

    orb9220 TPF Noob!

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    Well no time like the present to upgrade kit lens. When I made the decision to replace my 18-55 kit lens with my Tamron 17-50 f2.8. Found it was one of my better decisions that I have made. And has been my workhorse lens for 3 yrs. Usability in lower light,indoors and lower light situations and Image IQ went up quite a bit.

    Both Tamron and Sigma have 17-50 and 24-75 f2.8 flavors. That are more expensive then the kit lenses. But give you a better lens.
    .
     
  4. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    What do you usually take pictures of?

    Do you need good low-light performance or do you usually shoot outdoors in daylight?

    Was 135 mm long enough, or did you yearn for more reach?

    Was 18 mm wide enogh or do you yearn for wider still?

    Lastly, how much of your money can we spend?
     
  5. djacobox372

    djacobox372 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 is a great value. It's pro quality glass at a consumer price, and the focal range is perfect for everyday shooting.
     
  6. David Dvir

    David Dvir TPF Noob!

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    I really liked the 18-200 when I was using the D80. It's a bit expensive but you can find a used one for a reasonable price nowadays.
     
  7. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Ashley - why not just get the 18-135 mm you have repaired.

    I think Nikon's 18-200 mm superzoom is one of their worst lens values, and I tried 2 of them.

    Bad, complex barrel distortion (and soft focus), particularly in the corners, at 18 mm, but it did improve as you zoom out, and it changes to pincushion distortion at about 35 mm. Focus softens again as you approach 200 mm.
    So, like most 10x+ super zoom lenses, it's a jack-of-all-trades, master-of-none kind of lens that only delivers truely decent performance from 35 mm to 180 mm.

    But, it's convenient if you don't want to be bothered carrying/changing lenses, which is the main reason a lot of people like that kind of lens. Convenience is more important to them, than image quality.
     
  8. peteredwards

    peteredwards TPF Noob!

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    Why can't you use the 50 mm on your D 80? If it's a nikon lens I would think it works. Or is there something in the manual stating it won't work?
     
  9. JustAnEngineer

    JustAnEngineer TPF Noob!

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    These are all excellent questions. It's too bad that the original poster hasn't come back to answer them.

    I'd suggest the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 or Sigma 18-50 f/2.8 if the shorter reach isn't a problem.
     
  10. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    IMO, Nikon's 18-200 mm is the worst lens value they currently offer.
     
  11. orb9220

    orb9220 TPF Noob!

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    Yep the all-in-wonder convenience zooms are vehemently defended.
    And for what they are do a great job. But I wouldn't touch one with a 10ft. zoom.

    I just never got the "I want only one lens so I don't have to carry
    and swap lenses" Crowd.

    As I look at my kit as a tool bag and pull out the right tool for the job.
    Instead of relying on my all-in-one Leatherman tool.

    And for me to getting my shots indoors, lower light and getting the
    best Image IQ I can. Requires more than all-in-one lens wonders.

    But hey whom am I to rain my expectations down on others.
    But do try to recommend the better and best for photography
    and recommends for convenience isn't up on the list. Tho I do understand
    the need maybe as a travel lens for holidays and such. But an all purpose
    walkaround sorry. As way to many situations needing faster glass.
    And if I am walking around and can't take a lot of shots due to slow glass.
    Then what is the point of convenience.
    .
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2010

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