I just this past week purchased a AFS 55-200VR lens from Amazon, and I have some questions concerning this lens. First, it seems to hunt for focus much more than my 18-55, and the pictures don't seem to be quite as sharp when zoomed all the way out to 200mm. Also, it seems to be a little noisier than my 18-55. I really like the options this lens has given me, and I hope to be able to purchase another lens late this year early next year, hoping to have $1200 to $1500 to spend. In the meantime, I may try and get a good portrait lens, so i will be researching that. Cheers
When zoomed out to 200mm and hand holding, you need to make sure you're using a fast enough shutter speed to stop camera motion blur. The rule of thumb would be 1/(lens focal length x 1.5) as a shutter speed. For example, at 200mm the minimum shutter speed would be 1/(200 x 1.5) = 1/300th second.
Have you checked the Tripod forum? Remember that if you are shooting a moving subject you will need a fast shutter speed to freeze the subjects motion, unless you use the panning technique. Good Luck and Enjoy your Nikons!