I two days ago I received the new 70-200/f4. I already had the 70-200/f2.8VRII. So, the natural question is, can this new lens that weighs about half and costs about half match the image quality of the more expensive lens in different light and shooting conditions?
Caveat: I am not a pro or a professional tester. I did my best to set up different conditions for comparison. I'll let you be the judge of the relative image quality. All taken with the D800.
Test 1: Very poor light. Manual setting of ISO800, f/4, 1/60sec, handheld with VR on. I also included the 85mm/f1.4 for comparison. In all cases the light is inadequate, but interesting to see the relative performance. Which do you think is better?
#3166 is the f4.0 #3167 is the 85mm/f1.4 #3168 is the f2.8
Test 2: Setting programmed auto; all at 85mm; auto ISO; again handheld in the same actual light as the above sequence.
#3169 is the f2.8 #3170 is the f4.0 #3171 is the 85mm.
Test 3: On a tripod and using flash. Again programmed auto setting.
#3159 is the f2.8 #3160 is the f4.0
Test 4: Outdoors in pretty good light. This open house sign is about 150 yards away. This is an extreme crop and at 100%. Setting is on program auto. ISO set at 400. These are taken on a tripod.
#3136 is the f2.8 #3139 is the f4.0
Test 5: Also outdoors in relatively good light but aimed at a store front that is very much in the shadows. This is cropped. The distance is about 300 yards, taken on a tripod. Again programmed auto.
#3132 is the f2.8 #3140 is the f4.0
I'll let you be the judge. Personally, I am amazed.