Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?
Hi fellow Nikonians!
It seems as if so many Nikon users seem to unanimously recommend using a 28-105mm Nikkor over a 28-80mm Nikkor. Some folks (not necessarily in this forum) tend to talk as if they would only use the 28-105mm, and wouldn't be caught dead using the 28-80. They say things like "of course the 28-105 is much better," but then never explain why.
The 28-80 I'm talking about is the one I own, which is the D version with the wide focusing ring, introduced a few years ago and recently replaced with the G version. There are the obvious differences between the two lenses such as the plastic mount of the 28-80 (which is a plus for me since I like the light weight) and the wobbly barrel (which annoys me, but I've yet to be convinced that it causes an optical problem). But aside from those few things I've not found any compelling reason the spend $300.00 on the 28-105 when I don't believe I would ever need to use the 80-105 part of the zoom range. Plus, it's almost twice as heavy as the 28-80.
Can anyone give me a compelling and convincing reason to buy myself a 28-105 Nikkor?
#1. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 0photobri Basic MemberMon 15-Oct-01 11:12 PM
LAST EDITED ON Oct-16-01 AT 03:13 AM (GMT)
What would you want the new lens for? Portraits? Avail light? Macro?
If portrait or avail light- look at a 85mm 1.8
If macro and portrait, save a little longer and look for a micro 105. Grey or used and you can save a few bucks... I also hear good things about the Tokina Macro (see JRP)....
Fine Art Wedding Photojournalism
#2. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 1Tue 16-Oct-01 12:19 AM
I really don't need the new lens for anything specific. I shoot mostly landscapes, architecture and family shots. I would be interested in getting the 28-105, however, if it is NOTICEABLY SHARPER.
I guess that's really what I'm asking - has anyone replaced a "consumer" Nikkor 28-80 (or 35-80) with a 28-105 and noticed an increase in sharpness?
#3. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 2photobri Basic MemberTue 16-Oct-01 09:21 AM
Hmmm... I don't think you would notice the difference... I had the 28-105, and although it was a very capable lens, it could not compete with a Nikkor prime, so I sold it.
If you want something affordable and high quality for landscaped and architecture - I would look at the 24mm 2.8and get a 50mm 1.8 for family
It is not too expensive, covers an area you don't have - and produces very sharp contrasty images.
Fine Art Wedding Photojournalism
#4. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 3jrp Charter MemberTue 16-Oct-01 11:09 AM
I just bought a 28-105mm lens to be able to speak of it with first hand info. My daughter took it away from me almost instantly but not before being able to try it well.
This lens is a very good single lens for travel or all-around lens. It will cover from landscapes to groups and even some head and shoulders portrait shots. At this end it might be said it is better than the 28-80, mainly due to that added focal length reach but also because of apparent better built.
In regard to sharpness one can only make comparisons at the common focal lengths, from 28 to 80mm. To me they come at about par for common-sized prints (6X8). However, contrast seems to be better in the 28-105mm. This is of course the perceived quality from my failing eyesight and results always vary depending on the quality of care from your friendly 1-hour-photo shop.
It should be added that our intention here is not to convince you one way or another, it is just to share experiences.
I for one did not like much the looks of the 28-80 but Canadian Charles keept on sending us very good images taken with it.
Have a great time
JRP (Nikonian at the north-eastern Mexican desert) My profile, My Gallery
Previous photographic journey, before Nikonians: A Brief Love Story
Have a great time :-)
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#5. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 4Tue 16-Oct-01 02:22 PM
You make a good point when you mention contrast. I hadn't really considered an improvement in contrast as being something I would want, but I think I would appreciate that. Maybe contrast is the thing that I feel like my 28-80 images have been lacking, not sharpness.
I used to have a C*a*n Elan II with a Tamron 28-80 (I switched to Nikon because my wife has Nikon gear and I wanted to be able to share lenses) and since I switched I have been thinking that my images taken with the 28-80 Nikkor were less sharp than images taken with the Elan II and the Tamron. We all know it's not the camera : ), but I've been wondering about the lens. I bought a 50mm f/1.8 to compare the 28-80 with, and I don't see much difference between the two so far. I need to shoot some more to really evaluate the 50mm.
I looked at Popular Photography tests of both the 28-80 Nikkor and the 28-105 Nikkor, and the test results were almost exactly the same at 28-50mm, which is the range I mainly shoot. Maybe increased contrast is what I'm after.
#7. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 5bowmah Basic MemberTue 16-Oct-01 03:27 PM
You are correct, many users here claim that the 28-105 is a better lens and never detail why. I for one think the 28-80 is also a great lens. I have seen CharlesYVR's photos and they are as sharp and as good as mine (or even better than mine). It is not the lens but the operator that takes graet photos. I have the 28-105 and CharlesYVR has the 28-80. The only advanatges of the 28-105 is the slight increase in focal length (good for close up portraits) and the macro function. It is not a true macro but I was able to get some fun macro shots of flowers etc... Optically, I believe enlarging to 8x10, you will not see much differences between the 2 lenses. I have also stated that the 28-80 kits lens is just as good optically for hte average user as teh 28-105.
Unless you want that extra little focal length and mcaro, keep yoru 28-80 for a general purpose all around lens!
Also, the 28-105 is the sharpest at f/8 to f/11. It is good over the entire focal lenght but there is a definite sweet spot on this lens.
"What we have to learn, we learn by doing."
"Happiness is not having what you want but wanting what you have."
#6. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 0
Unless you feel that your photography will improve considerably as a result of buying the 28-105, you should stick to the 28-80. I recently upgraded from a 35-70 f/4-5.6 to the 28-105 because :
- I wanted the extra range, especially for portraits where 70mm just wasn't long enough, and my 80-400 is too bulky for this kind of work.
- I wanted the extra 2/3 stop at the long end; I have found that 5.6 is just too slow for the type of light that I shoot in.
- Distortion in the 28-105 is excellent for a zoom lens (on par with pro 2.8 zooms). Can't comment on the distortion of the 28-80, but it is definitely there on the 35-80.
- I wanted to explore macro work (available on the 28-105) without buying additional accessories.
- I prefer metal mounts for longevity and durability. I shoot in cold conditions, the plastic mounts are brittle and feel easily breakable.
Your decision should be based on where you feel your photographic direction will go over the next several years. If you can't clearly justify why you need the upgrade, then your money would be better spent elsewhere. The quality of the glass in the 28-80 will surely provide excellent images for you if you learn to master its potential.
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#8. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 6CharlesYVR Basic MemberTue 16-Oct-01 04:29 PM
How did I become a poster boy for the 28-80mm D?
The whole 28-105 vs. 28-80 debate is complicated by the fact that a few months ago, the only reviews out there of a 28-80 lens were for the previous generation 7 element/7 groups lens. A lot of Nikon users were basing their opinions on that.
Only recently have reliable reviews of the 28-80mm D lens (8 elements/8 groups) come out... and they show that it's a good lens... at least optically.
If you're happy with the 28-80 then spend your money on other things... telephoto lens, primes, professional film, good developing/printing, scanner, printer, etc.
Ideally, you want your lens to inspire you. The better build of 28-105 may inspire you more than the build of 28-80... or it may not. By the way, one lens out there that has an awesome build is the Nikon 24-85... you hold it and you know it's great.
#9. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 8nkcllewis Charter MemberTue 16-Oct-01 11:38 PM
In summary the differences between the two are:
Increased contrast, improves image sharpness.
More range, 80-105 is great portrait distance.
No distortion at 28 mm. It is really important to not have distortion. Someone said they sold their 28-105 because it wasn't as good as a prime. Well, it just so happens that the 28-105 is about as close to performance of the 28mm nikkor prime as one can get with regards to distortion. If you take architectural pictures with your 28-80, have you ever noticed how the buildings seem to bow like a banana towards the edges of the frame? That is distortion.
Metal lens mount makes a difference in life of the lens, and accuracy of the mount to the body. When the plastic starts to wear out, your lens will start to perform poorly do to a failure in alignment.
Of course, if the 28-80 starts to wear out, you can simply buy a new one. BTW, the 50 1.8 does very well in many "sharpness" tests but I like the "contrastier" look of the 55 2.8 Micro Nikkor better for landscapes.
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"A poor worker always blames his tools" Anonymous
#10. "One such comparison test between these lenses" | In response to Reply # 0
This are figures I already posted some days ago in a
former thread. If case you did not check that out yet...
(BTW people's reactions to the information below was
also very pleasing to me)...
The test information:
In a comparison between several zoom and prime lenses
following startling test result figures were stated for
the 28-80 resp. 28-105 zoom lenses:
28-80D - 265 g - 8/8 D lens version;
for focus distance: min. average max.
resolution at full op.: 52 44 52
resolution at f8: 55 61 58
uniformity at full op.: 89% 82% 93%
vignetting at full op.: 0.4d 0.5d 0.4d
distortion: -0.2% 0% 0% !!!!!
conclusion quality *** *** ***
now, for the AF D 28-105 f:3.5/4.5:
for focus distance: min. average max.
resolution at full op.: 40 41 40
resolution at f8: 56 59 56
uniformity at full op.: 90% 90% 87%
vignetting at full op.: 0.7d 0d 0.5d
distortion: -1.5% 0% 0.9%
conclusion quality ** *** **
This is no hoax, I got these numbers from the FNAC (Belgian and France shopping / test centers) summer 2001 magazine.
Of course, tests do not say it all and the 28-105 might have
been a faulty one...
But, knowing how many people here wrote against the 28-80D this is at least strange.
Furthermore, a lot of other lenses were tested from many other brands (Canon, Pentax...).
Those figures all seem very likely to me.
The Nikon lenses test better or at least as good as the other brands, so I do not think FNAC is biased at all here.
None of the other zoom lenses on test have better distortion
figures than the 28-80D !
I own a 28-80D and am very happy with it (after shooting
maybe 1000 slides with it-not as a pro!).
I know all this may be hard to believe, but I assure you I am not making this up.
Now about the build quality of the 28-80D I contest it is NOT good at all (but more than acceptable for what I paid for it).
I would say: if this is true, I got a real bargain on the 28-80D!!
I had seen comparative results between the D and G type versions in a french mag. In that mag the 28-80D lens was optically slightly better than the newer 28-80G lens.
#11. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 0
Well, I did it - I bought the 28-105 Nikkor!
The guy at Wolf Camera's main store in Atlanta (I work a few blocks away from there - dangerous, huh?) did a great job of convincing me to stop settling for cheap lenses. I spent a lot buying it there ($359.00), but I think it was worth it. This way I can bring it back easily if I decide that it's not "better enough" to justify the cost. I'm going on a fall colors trip to the Smokies in TN on Wednesday, so I'll have a good chance to try it out.
Thanks to everyone who replied to my post! (I'm going to change the equipment list on my profile now!)
#12. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 11
#13. "RE: Why should I buy a 28-105 Nikkor if I already have a 28-80?" | In response to Reply # 12Alex Basic MemberTue 23-Oct-01 06:56 AM
I cover a lot of weddings and for a while used the "amateur" 28-80mm lens whilst my boss used the 28-105mm alongside. We used identical film, same bodies (F90X) and of course were shooting in the same light. All films were processed at the same place at the same time. Yes there is a difference - the 28-80 is noticeably softer when compared side by side to a similar picture taken with the 28-105. Colours are crisper on the 28-105 and is the contrast.
Needless to say, my boss pressured me to get a 28-105 which I have had for a month now. It is a superb lens - I a now using it for two more commissions I have documenting wildlife at a local reserve. I have never been happier with the reults.
I still have the 28-80 and have it attached to my back up body an F50 - it still does take good pictures mind!
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