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Nikon 24-85mm f/2.8-4D IF

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5 replies to this topic

Poll: Rate this lens (13 member(s) have cast votes)

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  2. 2 Stars - below average (2 votes [15.38%])

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    Percentage of vote: 38.46%

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#1 Dallas


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Posted 13 March 2010 - 08:10

Have you used this lens? If so please let us know about your experience with it.

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#2 helioer


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Posted 13 March 2010 - 13:00

I had this lens for about one year and replaced it with 24-70/2.8G because corner area sharpness at large apertures of the 24-85 was not good enough. "Eye-opening" event was a low light outdoor hockey game where I did most of the shooting with a 70-200/2.8 VR I and I used the 24-85 for the team photos. I replaced the 24-85 the next week.

Later on I had a similar experience when I took some indoor photos with the new 24-70 and my old Sigma 12-24. This resulted in purchasing the excellent 14-24/2.8G. I still have the Sigma though. The additional 2 mm on the wide end makes a difference in some situations (when using a DX sensor). I have not used the Sigma with my D3 ever since. It is soft in the corners. Stopping down to f8 helps a little.

Anyway I liked the macro capability and the "extra" 15 mm on the longer end compared with the 24-70.


D3s, D3, D200, D70
FX: Nikon 14-24/2.8G, 24-70/2.8G, 28/1.8G, 70-200/2.8G VR, 300/2.8G VR, 60/2.8D+105/2.8D micro, 85/1.4D, 16/2.8D, 50/1.4G, 500/8 reflex C, Sigma 8/3.5 EX, 12-24 EX, 150/2.8 OS EX...
TC: TC-14 E II, TC-17 E II, TC-20 E III
DX: 10.5/2.8, 18-70, 18-200
4*SB800's, R1C1 kit with 3*SB-R200, YN-622 kit (TX+4*RC)...

#3 Clactonian


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Posted 13 March 2010 - 20:28

I use it as my walk about lens. I'm not a pixel peeper and find the results on both my D70 and D2Xs more than acceptable. The macro facility, whilst not as good as a dedicated macro lens, is very useful. In essence I would say good value for money.
Still trying.

#4 Jason Ross

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Posted 05 April 2010 - 11:52

Overall this lens may not be the quality on the Nikon 24-70 on a D3s but it's just as good at 24mm and the lens handles a lot better than the Nikon 24-70, I love the macro mode and it works very well for flower photos, it's a well made lens and both zoom and focus rings are very smooth, the Nikon 24-85 is fantastic on my Nikon F4 and it works on my Nikon FM2 and F2.

#5 Preston

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Posted 05 July 2010 - 18:29

I bought this lens in 2002 as a general purpose optic to go with a D100.  The performance is excellent on a DX sensor.  Now that I'm using on a D700, I can see the barrel distortion at 24mm, slight pincushion at 85mm and chromatic aberration on the edges wide open.  The sharpness sweet spot is f/8.0 and visible chromatic problems are gone.  While the 24-70mm is a better optical performer, for a workhorse lens, I'd miss the macro and rack out to 85mm on the FX sensor. 

#6 gsabbio



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Posted 01 October 2010 - 09:18

I bought mine one in 2004, along with a D70, it was the core of my first digital SLR gear.

Indeed, on a 6mp DX sensor, the results were always appreciable and the contrast was good.

For this reason I did not sold it when I coupled it with a VR 24-120 (more helpful for my needs).

So, after some years of intense usage, I left it for a long time in a drawer, except for some high mountains hiking where I used it thanks to its relatively low weight and small dimensions.

Only one years ago, I decided to make some deep test comparing it with the VR 24-120 on a 12mp camera (D300)
The purpose of this was: 'Do I need a 24-70 2,8 or the overall quality of the 24-85 is enough for my needs?' The reason of this silly question was: as both the two lenses are not stabilized (that is one of my 'must') if the quality would be good, the 24-85 would be enough for my 'high quality needs' 

The results were a real surprise!
Unfortunately on a 12mp camera at 2,8 full wide, the 24-85 is really a bad performer, especially in the corners/edges (widely worse than the VR 24-120) stopping down to 4-5,6 the situation becomes good in the centre but not acceptable in the corners/edges.
Stopped to f8 it becomes good/very-good in the centre and acceptable in the corners/edges, quite better than the VR 24-120 at least in the centre.

That was a real surprise, it was predicted to me as a good performance lens (lightweight but close to professional needs) but this was not true.

At the end I sold it right away and I happily bought the 24-70 f2,8.

Conclusion: good in the centre but insufficient at the edges unless you stop to f8.
Good colour rendition
Appreciable for hiking purposes the macro function.
Good if used on a DX 6mp camera, it shows its weak point of the insufficient definition in the corner/edges on more mp SLR.
I do not care about distortion.
As the sharpness is quite low at the edges, the CA is not an issue (I have no idea of it)

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