Ouch! Just bought a 24 - 120 VR and have taken maybe 50 pictures with it. I wonder if I can find a justification for owning both lenses? I guess I will wait for a review of the 18 - 200 before I get too depressed.
Those test images look very good. I can't see how this lens won't be a big seller for Nikon. But like you I have a redundant focal range lens (24-85 D), but I will either sell it or keep it for the Macro mode. But the 18-200 is got a place already in my bag. I just need a "walk around lens" like this one. It looks sharp enough that CS can "make it so". Regards,
Since this is real AFS, I'm wondering if the TCE's will work on this lens at the longer MM's settings (to keep rear elements from hitting the TC). Would't use it often but it would be nice to have a 400 f8 VR on trips with just the additional weight of the little 1.4. Of course the 1.7 would get its turn also.
Actually, I think the 67mm was an underhanded whack against Canon in an effort to draw away D30/D60 users. Canon came out with their USM 24-85/3.5-4.5 with 67mm first - just after the release of the D100. Then Nikon starts to market their 24-85 AFS G with the exact same unusual filter size. But who knows what the real story is?
Don't forget the 24-85 f2.8-4 Macro. A sleeper lens, nice and sharp, quick focus, and a very useable 1:2 Macro. I think that the 72mm size gets put on lens that are somewhat above consumer in quality but not the fully blown Nikkor PRO class. I was thinking that the 18-200 might be better than people thought just due to the class of lenses that have the filter size. Proper just smoke, but look at the lenses that use it.
I admit that the concept of an 11x lens leads me to expect a lot of compromises in image quallity. But I'm baffled at folks looking at four 600x800-ish jpegs and coming to any conclusions. For seeing lens performance, these are postage stamps.
Thanks for the link to the full size images. I do think the flower image is soft, but I wouldn't expect exceptional macro performance in any case. The shot with the rocks and ground cover has soft corners. I can't say these tell me very much about the lens. It would be interesting to see shots that would show distortion performance (the can shot may show significant pincusion, but it's hard to tell from the subject), flare control, and chromatic aberration. Some architectural and landscape shots would be nice to see. I burrowed down to the full size Star Wars billboard since it's the only "landscape". It shows very well-controlled CA at 200mm.
It's probably a good lens considering the 11x range as the review suggests. It's too bad the reviewers don't provide better photos.
To be honest, at any size file, I'm looking for barrel and pincushion distortion with a lens of this category. As far as the "soft" image of the flower, I think this was taken only to show bokeh quality.
So far it looks very good in my opinion, but only a full eval by Bjorn or other respected reviewer will tell the true story. Good luck!