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Possible upgrade from Nikon 35-70 F2.8D to Nikon 28-70 F2.8

Martin Glazer , Sep 08, 2011; 01:06 a.m.

I have the Nikon D90. I also have the Nikon 35 - 70 f2.8 D, I am considering upgrading to the Nikon 28mm - 70mm f2.8. The reviews on the net are generally favorable for the Nikon 28 - 70mm f2.8. Does any one have an opinion on how improved the Image quality would be? How much of a difference in Image quality is the Nikon 24 - 70 f2.8 over the Nikon 28 - 70 f 2.8?



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Alan Wilder , Sep 08, 2011; 04:19 a.m.

Possible upgrade from Nikon 35 - 70 F2.8D to Nikon 38 - 70 F2.8

The improvement in optical performance is practically nil from the 35-70 range as both are excellent by any standard. The lens has obvious benefits if you need the extra 7 mm on the wide end, faster AF and a non-rotating front thread. The drawback is the significantly larger size and of course the cost. If you need the wider end, the 24-70/2.8 is a far better choice as the size is not significantly different than the 28-70 and optically it's one of the very best lenses in Nikon's arsenal equaling or exceeding performance to primes. Also of course, 24 mm is a bit more useful for wide angle fans than 28 mm. I personally own the 35-70/2.8D and suppliment it with a 24/2.8 AIS when I need the wider coverage.

Peter Hamm , Sep 08, 2011; 07:07 a.m.

Do you also have a wider kit lens? Neither of those lenses is a great choice for DX imho.

the Nikon 17-55 or Tamron 17-50 are far better choices for most folks.

Walter Schroeder , Sep 08, 2011; 08:31 a.m.

I agree with Alan that the old 35-70mm is an excellent lens.
However there is a tendency to flair when shooting into light even if this is not a point source but a wide source of light.
In addition some of these lenses acquire some fogging of the lens that increases the flair considerably. this seems a widespread phenomenon.
If your lens is especially "clean" (like the one I own) than only the first part of my comment applies.
Knowing about the problem I tried to avoid it as much as possible and I personally used the 35-70mm f2.8 zoom for quite a while with good success before upgrading to the 24-70mm f2.8. Quite a positive upgrade in range but also quite a difference in price.

Martin Glazer , Sep 08, 2011; 10:57 a.m.

I have the Nikon 12 - 24mm F4, I also have the Nikon 35mm F1.8. I guess the lens to beat is the Nikon 24 - 70 f2.8? I also have the older Nikon 80 -200 f2.8

Les Berkley , Sep 08, 2011; 11:20 a.m.

Martin: What is the problem with your current gear? What is it not doing that you think the 'upgrade' will fix? It will NOT make you a better photographer. If you are not printing larger than 11x14, I suspect there will be NO visible difference. Even if you make larger prints, only a very close, deliberate examination would reveal any difference. Most people looking at prints do NOT look a the very corners to see if they are sharp.

What tripod are you using? The best 'upgrade' I know for better 'Eye-Cue' is a good solid tripod with a suitable head, and a remote release for the camera.

Peter Hamm , Sep 08, 2011; 11:55 a.m.

And you like the idea of switching from one lens to another every time you want to go wider than 24? That would drive me batty, but if you never shoot anything but set-up landscapes where you have loads of time, I guess...

Stephane Savard , Sep 08, 2011; 12:15 p.m.

I switched from the 35-70mm to the 28-70mm; but that was because I dropped and damaged the 35-70mm and Nikon wanted 400$ to repair it. So I sold it on eBay "as is for parts" and bought a used 28-70mm (to use on a D700).

I wish I hadn't dropped the 35-70mm though, I really like the 28-70mm, and in terms of image quality, not sure that I really see any difference (both are excellent!), but that 28-70mm weighs quite a bit. I mean it's massive. Having a D700, 200mm micro-nikkor, 17-35mm, 28-70mm and assorted accessories all in the same bag is a lot.

As for the 24-70, it was simple; I felt the price difference between the 28-70 and the 24-70 didn't justify the gain in image quality for what is, for me, only a hobby.

Eric Arnold , Sep 08, 2011; 02:21 p.m.

that would be a marginal increase in IQ. the main advantages are AF-S, more modern design, wider focal length. not sure it's really worth it for amateur/casual photography.

John Narsuitus , Sep 08, 2011; 03:33 p.m.

The 35-70mm f/2.8 worked well with my Nikon 35mm film cameras.

When I started shooting DX, I had to add a Nikon 20-35mm f/2.8 to compensate for the loss in wide-angle coverage of the 35-70. If I were forced to replace my 35-70 and 20-35, I would seriously consider the 24-70mm f/2.8. However, since it does not have an aperture ring, it will not work on my older manual/mechanical film cameras (Nikon F2).

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