Most Liked Positive Review
After getting my D90 I got a 60 macro, then a 105 VR macro for more working distance and foreshortened perspective and want MORE. So I bit the financial bullet and got this 200. It is a tank. I'd been put off by the bulk of my 105, but that now feel small. But when you look through the viewfinder it's all worth it, then you see the images and you can't help but be moved. Exceptional performance - every f-stop - 1:1, wow. If you think you need this, you do. (You know who you are!)
Most Liked Negative Review
Can't get a truly sharp image
No matter what I try, I can't get a truly sharp image out of this lens. I actually got sharper images with my all-in-one Canon G11. I'm not sure if there is a defect with this lens or if this is just the way it is. I look around on the internet for bug photos and I find many that are much sharper than the ones I've taken with this lens, with every possible detail standing out. Meanwhile, my best images have colors blending into one another in ways that look fuzzy and washed out. I've taken th...View full Review
No matter what I try, I can't get a truly sharp image out of this lens. I actually got sharper images with my all-in-one Canon G11. I'm not sure if there is a defect with this lens or if this is just the way it is. I look around on the internet for bug photos and I find many that are much sharper than the ones I've taken with this lens, with every possible detail standing out. Meanwhile, my best images have colors blending into one another in ways that look fuzzy and washed out. I've taken thousands of photos with this lens already, adjusting settings and lighting in every possible way, but there is never a truly crisp photo. You would think that even if I were an absolute novice that by the time I'd taken 4 or 5 thousand photos, at least one of them would be really crisp if the lens was actually capable of accomplishing this feat. But thus far nothing. This isn't to say that my clearest shots aren't very nice looking. They are. But they're not as nice as the sharpest photos I see on the web. I got this lens because all reviews praise it up and down as creating the sharpest images--but I just can't see it. Maybe my standards are too high?
Reviewed by 50 customers
Anyone looking at the reviews for this lens is most likely trying to verify what they already know: that it is a fantastic lens. My 2 cents confirm that. The lens is optically superb, and it has not been challenged by a 24 Mp DX sensor. I used it on 16 and 24 Mp DX sensor cameras, and the sharpness is flawless when images are in focus, which is a separate challenge and has nothing to do with the lens performance. The long focal length requires steady holding, so a solid tripod is a very good idea. Auto focusing, particularly if you switch from close to far away, is very slow and can be frustrating to people used to the AF-S optics with much more limited focus range. But this is not a quality one should expect from this special purpose lens with a tremendous focus distance range. As with any close up photography, motion of the subject will cause blurring as much as does the motion of the camera and the lens. Taking close-up shots of insects on flowers even in light breeze is very hard, and this lens will not make the subject steady. However, I found that by focusing manually to the close ball park, then switching to AF-C 3D tracking helps with this problem to a large degree. Once in a while the camera will hunt away from the manually focused spot and I have to manually recover the focus but most of the time it will issue fine quick adjustments and the focus will stay on target, especially if the motion is not too drastic. I find AF useful in this case. Same applies for pictures taken at long distances, where AF can fairly quickly be re-acquired when subjects are relatively in focus. It is only when the subject is totally out of focus will it take the camera / lens combination a very long time to try and find focus. I find that the bokeh for close-ups is less than creamy but Ok if the clutter is close behind the subject, and improves significantly for the clutter further away from the subject in focus. Color rendition is impeccable for the focal plane. Traces of axial CA may be seen on high contrast edges close to the focal plane but disappear quickly into the bokeh if a shallow(er) DOF is maintained in close-up shots. I have not tried the most challenging duck-on-the-water-with-sun-glare shot to see if the longitudinal CA would creep into that kind of an unlikely scenario for the use of this lens. Hand holding this lens is challenging, even for subjects far away: one has to realize that even if subjects far away appear steady, that did not make your handholding steadier and magically removed the motion that you so clearly saw when taking close-ups. You simply can't see it quite as well. Using steady support is essential with this lens regardless of the distance to the subject. The lens is fairly long and thin but hefty due to its extremely high build quality, and handles nicely on a D7000 or similar class body. It fits well onto a D5300 but can make it a bit front heavy. This is largely irrelevant as I would recommend limiting hand held use anyway.
The Nikkor 200mm f/4 Micro Lens is the standard for quality macro photography. Its construction is excellent and its optics are superb. Its focal length of 200mm is perfect for most wildlife closeup photography when an external flash is used. Below is a photo taken at a shutter speed of 1/250, an aperture of f/11, an ISO of 3200, Aperture Priority, Matrix Metering, and White Balance set on Flash. I used a Nikon D800 camera body and a Nikon SB-700 Speedlight.
I use this in taking nature pictures and copying slides. It is extremely sharp an excellent lens.
This lens is a dream to use; it has so much working distance compared to the shorter focal-length cousins that it vastly eases your taking pictures of mobile subjects. Mine is coupled with a D610, and the combination allows me to get shots I could not get before because the subjects (bees, butterflies, etc) kept taking off (literally) on me. No comparison, even to a 100mm competitor (I've used both 90mm and 100mm macro lenses before). Yes, it is expensive, and yes, it is a bit heavier, but the payback in ease of use more than makes up for both. The lens collar, for switching from landscape to portrait mode, is also a big winner. Save up for this lens, or break the budget and go in debt, but this is the one to get.
I have owned all the macros lenses, that nikon makes. All of them preformed excellent I have spent a lifetime working as a professional photographer, and NIKON has been (my drug of choice) over all the years. Let's talk about this 200mm macro.(JUST THE BEST MONEY CAN BUY) I use this lens to do extreme macro photography of iris injury's to the eyes. (NO I'm and eye surgeon) however the real surgeons use the photographs from this lens for examples during surgery. I also use the lens, with a MACRO RING light for the perfect exposure ever time. Thank you NIKON for providing me professional photographic equipment over a lifetime !!!!!
I started 40 years ago with a Nikon F2S and a 55mm f3.5 Micro-Nikkor, great lens, worked my way up to 105 AF -D also great. The 200mm AF-D is fantastic!! With D-800 in manual and auto ISO, it is incredible. I would suggest a tripod as this lens has a great tripod collar. I also use with a F-5 and use an incident light meter, manual exposure, for close ups of my cats looking out the windows. I can shoot handheld in bright light with very fast shutter in manual with auto-ISO, however this lens is so tack sharp PLEASE try it with a tripod, the resolution is beyond any other lens I have ever used. I have been shooting Nikons for over 40 years and this is as fine of an example as I have ever had.
Quality is what the professional photographers have come to rely on and experience in Nikon products and this 200mm Macro lens fulfills those expectations. Focusing from infinity to 1:1 allows us to separate an object from it's background and maintain a high quality image even at wide aperture. If AF is used it responds quickly and accurately and for stability purposes has a separate rotating collar.
I have been looking for a micro lens for a while but this is the one finally stays on my Nikon body. Unlike the newly released NIKKOR lenses, this lens has the buttons on different locations so be sure to look them all before starting using this lens. Quality of glass is excellent! Make sure to turn on the button on the lens if not AF for the entire range. I also like the exterior code of the lens makes the feeling like touched the past. Took sometime to wait for arrival due to out of stock. So far no negative to mention at all. Looking forward to the Spring shooting.
I have been using this lens for detailed medical product photography and the resolution of this lens is absolutely stunning. I never use autofocus for macro shooting. I always manual focus so that I can control the depth of field. Combine a macro focusing rail to this lens and you will have the ultimate in focusing control without having to handhold or move your tripod constantly to achieve your reproduction ratio. The most wonderful part of this lens is that I can keep it far enough away from my subject to manipulate the subject without moving the camera out of the way. It also makes for a really great auto focus portrait lens that blows out the background quite cleanly. I have to say that the old 55 Micro was my go to for flat field copy work, the 105 Micro has been my money lens for years but this lens is absolutely exquisite for small product or insect photography. Go for as many megapixels you can afford and this lens will meet the challenge. I use a Nikon D3X and I am sure that this lens could easily resolve a 36 Megapixel D800E. If you want a professional lens that sets the bar for Macro photography, you found it!
I have had the 60mm, 100mm (Canon), 105mm and now the 200mm. The 200 quickly became my favorite, the ability to isolate a subject with it is unequaled.
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