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Need input on Ultra-Wide DX Zoom

torwood

Jefferson Hills, US
761 posts

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torwood Silver Member Nikonian since 06th Dec 2010
Sun 18-Nov-12 02:25 PM

I find myself in the need for an ultra-wide DX zoom for use on my D7000.

Some background: Before digital cameras, I used an ultra-wide zoom (18-35 AFD) quite extensively for travel and landscape photography. It was probably my favorite lens, producing the majority of my keeper images when I traveled. When I switched over to digital in 2005, full-frame was in it's infancy, and was way out of my price range. Around that same time, I began shooting my kids sports, and pretty much stopped traveling. All of my DSLRs are DX format, which fit my needs fine for the present.

For years, I have been tempted to buy a DX ultra-wide to replace my 18-35 on DX digital. Several things have held me back: cost ($900), amount of projected use, and incompatibility with FX if I ever upgrade. If I would ever go to FX (D600), I am almost certain that it would be my primary landscape/scenic camera, and the DX cameras would still be used for field sports.

Now, I have a somewhat urgent need for a wide angle to shoot several projects that my firm has completed recently. I am an architect. There are enough projects to justify the purchase of the lens. Before anyone recommends a T&S lens,...I am not going for that level of precision. These images will be reproduced at a small scale, and while distortion is important to me, I know I can make a regular ultra-wide work. I will most likely always be shooting this lens stopped down (f8), and for my interior uses, mostly on a tripod.

Now, short story long,...my questions: I can buy the 10-24 3.5-4.5DX or the 12-24 f4DX. The 10-24 is $900 new, and I have seen some used versions for $650-700. The 12-24 is available used for between $500-600. The 10-24 is newer, and slightly wider. The 12-24 is a more professionally made lens, and is probably as wide as I need.

1. Has anyone done a comparison of the two? How they compare in distortion is the biggest issue to me, but a sharpness comparo would be of interest as well.

2. Why did Nikon make the 10-24DX? All of the reviews I have read of the 12-24 are amazingly good. The lens was expensive, but at $900, the 10-24 was nearly as expensive, so it's not a price bargain like the 18-35mm was on FX/film. Is anyone aware of anything that Nikon addressed or "fixed" with the newer lens? Was it just a marketing thing to get to 10mm like Canon and Sigma?

I am very tempted to pick up a used 12-24DX. If there is a reason I should reconsider the 10-24DX, and spend the additional money, I'm all ears. Thanks.

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