I have been using various ED80-200 Nikkors for the last few years. Having previously owned and sold the AFS lens (another story), I am familiar with its design and use. This lens is an IF lens and the front element does not move at all. The net result is that the air gap between a filter and the primary element is constant. In contrast to the AFS lens, the 2-touch AFD (my current lens) is not an IF lens. Specifically, the primary element moves within a fixed tube that does not rotate. While this is convenient for polarizers, I have noticed that the front lens element is very far away from the filter if the lens is focused at infinity. The net result is a large air gap. Now, I am not a physicist, but I've got to believe that this air gap between filter and lens negatively influences the sharpness of the final image. Therefore, I never use a protection filter on this lens for fear of negatively impacting the final image.
What do you think? Is the AFD lens not well suited to filter use?
#1. "RE: 80-200 + Filters" | In response to Reply # 0f5fstop Basic MemberTue 10-Jul-01 09:49 PM
I have often tested lenses with and without filters, including my (now sold) 80-200 F/2.8D lens and I have noticed no differences between with or without the filter when shooting the same subject.
Some people refuse to use filters on a lens, some of us prefer to destroy a filter versus the end of a lens, and I have proved this theory out, not on the 80-200, but on a Tokina. However, if you go to my camera bag right now, there is not a lens in the bag that does not have a filter on it. The filter might be a polarizer if that was the last filter used, or it might be a UV if I switched filters after use; however, there are definitely filters on the lenses.
If you feel comfortable not using a filter, then by all means, do not use one, the final decision is yours.
As for the air gap causing distortion, I do not believe it will, since there is also a lot of air in front of the lens. (That is except for Nikons used by NASA by astronauts.) However, I am not a physicist or an optical engineer, so the question of distortion due to an air gap would have to be answered by an expert in the field.
However, it is an interesting question, to say the least.
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#2. "RE: 80-200 Filters" | In response to Reply # 1jnscbl Basic MemberWed 11-Jul-01 02:02 AM
I think Doug says it all with the first nine words of his reply. What could be easier? But if that's not practical, you could always use Cokin filters. Then, at least, you would not have a sealed air gap.---scott
"I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it."