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Which telezoom 8020028 or 7020028VR



I have purchased after a Nikon D70 now in the meantime a Nikon D80, Tokina 12-24, Nikon 50/1.8D, Nikon 85/1.8D and am looking now for a telezoom.

As far as I could research, the best options qualitywise would be either the current Nikon 80-200/2.8 or the new 70-200/2.8 VR.

Since there is a huge price difference (I could also buy the 80-200 on ebay used), I would be interested in your experience with those 2 lenses.

Is there a difference in image quality visible with a 10MP or 12 MP DSLR? Which one is better?

How about bokeh, lens flare, contrast, CA, Vignetting, light fall off etc.?

Thanks in advance


I have to add: I am not interested in the VR feature and I do not need absolutely F2.8.

So if someone knows a Zoom with aperture of 3.5-4.5 in the 70-200 range which is at least as good in image quality as the 2 zooms mentioned above I would be also interested in this.

Basically I am looking for a Nikon version of the Zeiss N 70-200/3.5-4.5


Hi Dirk, it does look like you like serious glass. Although I do not have any experience with the 80-200, I do own the 70-200 VR. And yes, it is every penny worth! Apart from the VR which is excellent (I've taken shots at 15th of a second...), do not forget about the AF-S! The lens is superfast and very accurate. I do take sport photos with the lens and it is just great. One thing to watch out for however is lens flare, but I've found that with the lens hood and just a bit of thinking before just jumping away and shoot, that is eliminated in 99.9% of the time.

My choice? The 70-200 AF-S VR!

Hope this helps! Hendrik


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Yes I do

What is disturbing me the most with both, the 70-200VR and the 80-200/2.8, is the weight. 1.4 and 1.2 KG is not that easy to handle with handhold shots. Of course the VR helps here obviously, but at this price tag, my wife is kind of concerned

What I liked with my old Zeiss N 70-200/3.5-4.5 was the combination of excellent image quality (no lens flare issues by the way) and low weight (around 600g). I used it with Fuji Velvia 50 and Provia 100F all the time.

With good high ISO performance nowadays, I feel that I do not need really 2.8 for my kind of shooting (no sports). For my personal needs in the telezoom range, wide open aperture like 2.8 only results in bigger size, weight and higher price

But if there is no other telezoom out there with 3.5-4.5 and similar image quality, I have probably to bite the bullet and buy one of those 2 mentioned.

This is why I am curious to hear experiences from other users. Anybody else who has experience with one of those or knows a good third alternative?


Hi Dirk, I have both lenses, bought 70-200 because of VR for indoor sports, use it wide open (2.8) almost all the time. Could make some comparison shots for you with D2Xs if you want. Regards, Jakob.


I have both lenses - I much prefer the 18-200 VR - I use it all the time, very rarely change lenses on my D200...quality is excellent, weight really isn't an issue - I like the heft and feel of a heavier camera -


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Hi Janez,

this woud be very helpful. Upload size maximum is 800x800 and 130KB here, so a crop would bethe easiest way...

Nikon D2x, I would LOVE to have that one

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Hi Mike

Is this a typo? Did you mean 18-200 or 80-200?

I also read some revies about the brand new 70-300VR. only 750g. But I guess this will be inferior in image quality? Or are there any surprises out there?

Thanks to all in advance


Ok Dirk, I'll make it for the f stops from 2.8 till 8 stepwise for both lenses. I'll make corresponding crops, try to post it till Wednesday 17th of January. Regards.


Member's the 18-200 VR - it's a fabulous lens...Nikon's description is 18-200mm f3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S VR DX Zoom...about $750US...


Well-Known Member

I was talking to a friend of mine the other day about this situation. He has the 2.8 and I mentioned that the new Nikon IR VR with ED glass are outstanding. I look at the VR as an easy 3 stops. To me three stops, reduced weight, and reduced initial cost sound like a winner to me.

I also purchased the new 24mm to 120mm IR VR ED for my wife and I think it is outstanding.




Active Member
I have a very nice budget lens (budget to me is anything under $500 US)- AF Nikkor 70-300mm 1: 4-5.6 D - I shoot the D1X & D2x. For a general all around lens this one does really well - and did I mention it is very reasonable in price - I think B&H has it for around $310 US. I highly recommend the lens for anyone - pro or hobbyist, for many events outdoors I use this lens with great results.


Many thanks. I have tried the tripod approach with alternative settings but the possibility of the monitor is new to me. I will try printing some shots that look out of focus on the monitor and see what happens. Richard


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Hi Keith,

as far as I could research on the web, this AF Nikkor 70-300mm 1: 4-5.6 D is the predecessor of the brand new VR version which came 2 months ago to the dealers (Nikon AF-S VR 70-300 mm/4.5-5.6G IF-ED). It is more expensive, but has VR and AFAIK als better in image quality then the old one.

So the Nikon AF-S VR 70-300 mm/4.5-5.6G IF-ED would be an option, if it would be on the same level in terms of image quality like the 80-200/2.8 IF ED or the 70-200/2.8 VR.

This could be possible because the lens design for f-stops 3.5-5.6 are easier to design. Unfortunately they increased also the zoom range to 300mm, so this contradicts this a little bit...

My experience with the Zeiss lenses was, that the more expensive Zeiss N70-300/4.5-5.6 was not better than the cheaper Zeiss N 70-200/3.5-4.5. I had both, compared them and kept the 70-200 because it was 300-400g lighter then the other one and this means for me lower shutter speed possibility with handhold shots.

So if something similar exist in the Nikon range, it would be interesting.

The advantages of the Nikon 80-200/2.8 is currently (IMHO), price, weight and fullframe capabilty compared to the Nikon 70-200 VR. The latter has VR on his plus side.

Here are the specs of the new Nikon AF-S VR 70-300 mm/4.5-5.6G IF-ED

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It seems also to be for fullframe.

Thanks by the way for all your help. It is funny & nice to see how many people are still active here...


New Member
I own the 70-200 2.8 VR on a D200. I have found that my copy does not auto focus properly if I use a cheap circular polarizer. I get outstanding results wihtout any filters. There will also be out of focus conditions if the VR is not turned OFF when using a tripod. I also own the 18-200 VR & find this to be a superb lens that I use for 80% of the time but the VR must be turned off when using a tripod. For either lens I find I must use very fast shutter speeds or a remote shutter release or delayed timer to achieve razor sharp photos at 200MM even with a very solid tripod.



Many thanks. I am about to buy the 18-200 and am now using the 28-120 (or is it 130) VR. I have turned the VR off when using the tripod. I will try taking the filter off (skylight) and turning off the VR. Many thanks, RW


Well-Known Member
Actually to answer Dirks original question, I used to own both the 80-200 f2.8 2 ring zoom (non-AF-S) and the 70-200 AF-S VR G.

I've done a lot of side by side work with both and in general my feedback is as follows,

70-200 AF-S VR f2.8 (does work on full frame film - I use it on my F100 without issue)
- ever so slightly sharper.
- better bokeh (noticeable)
- faster focus (due to AF-S)
- VR really works and makes a 3 stop difference)
- Replaced tripod leg with new LCF-10 QR from RRS.
- AF-lock on lens is useful for me

80-200 non-AFS f2.8 2 ring
- Main reason I kept it was because I still use film full frame cameras like the original FM2 which requires an aperture ring. Currently thinking of getting an FM3. Also works on my F100.
- slow to focus on D70 - the screw driven AF on the F100 is much stronger.
- Nicer crinkle finish reminiscent of the old pro-line Nikon lenses, like the 28mm f1.4, 105 DC F2, 85mm f1.4, etc....
- better tripod leg
- switching between AF/MF not as easy.

I ended up selling the 80-200mm f2.8 for the same price I bought it for so that is another data point to consider, since they hold their value well. I know that won't happen for the 70-200 which has more electronics and may not last as long at over double the price. I ended up getting the 80-400 VR 3.5-5.6mm to fill in the needs when I need more range and an aperture ring
For manual full frame camera use the extra speed I get with f2.8 is not necessary since I don't use it for sports so the 80-400 fits well there.


Hey friends,

could you please stop to hijack other's threads? This makes it really uncomfortable to read. It is so easy to open a new thread for a new question. Please do so. Others with similar questions will find it then later also easier. Thanks.


Thanks for this information. I did not know that the 70-200VR is also compatible with fullframe. I just would love to have less KG and lower price tag

1.4KG on a D80 looks kind of dangerous...

I will wait also to see first how the result of Janez comparison will be.

Maybe later on we find also someone, who used also the new 70-300VR compared to the 70-200VR or 80-200....

P.S. The server provider has some technical difficulties since Monday. So the e-mails of the forum did not get through or with 3-8 hours delay. They promised me that this will be better tomorrow. So please rather check online for the next days for new postings intead of waiting for the e-mails out of the forum...