Luminous Landscape Forum

Equipment & Techniques => Cameras, Lenses and Shooting gear => Topic started by: DeanChriss on December 29, 2014, 10:56:19 am

Title: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on December 29, 2014, 10:56:19 am
I'd like to get a small and portable Nikon D810 system exclusively for landscapes. Having an excellent 24-70mm (or similar) zoom lens for it is an absolute requirement. Based on reading everything I can find it looks like Tamron makes the best performer, and the Nikon lens has CA that's off the charts.

I haven't owned anything but Canon L-series glass for a long time and I'm not sure what to expect. Does anyone here have experience with the Tamron lens? I'm very curious about overall build quality and anything else you only find out after using the lens for a while. For instance, lenses by the camera makers never seem to vignet with normally thick polarizers while it seems many 3rd party lenses do. Any and all input is appreciated.   
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: E.J. Peiker on December 29, 2014, 01:05:21 pm
The Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC is currently the best 24-70 optically with a Nikon mount.  It's marginally better than the Nikon 24-70 for resolution but has slightly more linear distortions (corrected by most RAW converters if automatic lens corrections are turned on) and is stabilized.  The lens is a little more plasticky than the Nikon (or Canon 24-70) but still built relatively well.  If I ever lose or destroy my Nikon 24-70, I would buy this, get better optics, get stabilization if I want it, and pay less money.  Hope this helps.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on December 29, 2014, 01:57:49 pm
I'd like to get a small and portable Nikon D810 system exclusively for landscapes. Having an excellent 24-70mm (or similar) zoom lens for it is an absolute requirement. Based on reading everything I can find it looks like Tamron makes the best performer, and the Nikon lens has CA that's off the charts.

I haven't owned anything but Canon L-series glass for a long time and I'm not sure what to expect. Does anyone here have experience with the Tamron lens? I'm very curious about overall build quality and anything else you only find out after using the lens for a while. For instance, lenses by the camera makers never seem to vignet with normally thick polarizers while it seems many 3rd party lenses do. Any and all input is appreciated.   

I can only comment on the Nikkors.   The 24-700mm f/2.8 is a great lens in real world quality, however, small and light it isn't!!  If you are thinking landscape, I can recommend the 24-120mm f/4 VR and the 24-85mm G.  I've never had good luck with Tamron and  Tokina lens.  I liked the Tokina 28-70mm ATX Pro-II, but it wasn't optically equivalent of the Nikkor.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on December 29, 2014, 03:32:35 pm
Thanks for the comments.

I should have been a little more specific. By "small and portable" I only meant that I don't want to carry a pile of prime lenses, which is an alternative I considered and rejected. Short of that I'm looking for the best optical quality I can get in a 2-lens kit. The 70-200mm F/4 Nikon is an easy choice, though I wish it was weatherproof. In the 24-70mm range it really looks like the Nikon lens falls short. In the search for alternatives the Tamron came up as the winner in optical quality, but it also has to hold up well and not have serious useability issues. Another thing going for it is that it shares the 82mm filter diameter with my Canon 24-70mm-II. Anyway, I was hoping someone here has owned the Tamron for a while and could comment. 

I have a lot of Canon equipment that I don't plan on getting rid of, at least in the short term. This 2-lens landscape kit is my way of testing the Nikon waters and determining what I think of everything side by side, and it'd be nice to have something more portable than Canon 1-series bodies and equivalent lenses. Longer term I'm very happy with the Canon 1DX and telephotos for wildlife and have no plans to change anything in that regard.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: Colorado David on December 29, 2014, 03:37:57 pm
The 24-700mm f/2.8 is a great lens in real world quality, however, small and light it isn't!! 

I would sure love to get my hands on a 24-700 2.8 but I bet it wouldn't be small and light! ;D ;D ;D
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: E.J. Peiker on December 29, 2014, 04:06:09 pm
I can understand the hesitancy on third party lenses but some have stepped it up in recent years so don't let experiences from more than 3 or 4 years ago cloud your judgement too much.  In head to head test that I have seen or personally done, the Tamron 24-70 outperforms the Nikon.  Here's the DXO Mark comparison on the D800:
http://www.dxomark.com/Lenses/Compare/Side-by-side/AF-S-Nikkor-24-70mm-f-2.8G-ED-on-Nikon-D800-versus-Tamron-SP-24-70mm-F28-Di-VC-USD-Nikon___175_792_885_0
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on December 29, 2014, 04:37:58 pm
... don't let experiences from more than 3 or 4 years ago cloud your judgement too much.

It has been more like 20 years, but I'm sure that's a big part of my low expectations. The last third party lens I had was optically great for its day, when it worked. ;-)
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on December 29, 2014, 08:24:07 pm
Thanks for the comments.

In the 24-70mm range it really looks like the Nikon lens falls short. In the search for alternatives the Tamron came up as the winner in optical quality, but it also has to hold up well and not have serious useability issues. Another thing going for it is that it shares the 82mm filter diameter with my Canon 24-70mm-II. Anyway, I was hoping someone here has owned the Tamron for a while and could comment. 


I know we are back to test versus real world discussion, but if you look around at images you will see the 24-70mm f/2.8 Nikkor used by most Nikon shooting professionals.  Images from it are omnipresent.  I have no RECENT 3rd party lens experience so can't comment. 

I started photography at 18 reading 2 John Shaw books.  He was basically a prime lens shooter because of the weaknesses in zoom lenses.  Though he has always like the 80-200mm f/2.8 and now the 70-200mm f/2.8.  Now if you Google John Shaw gear"  you find out that the only prime lenses in his bag are the 3 T/S lenses and 500mm f/4.  He shoots both the 24-20mm f/2.8G and 24-120mm f/4G VR. 

One concern I have packing is Circular Polarizer and ND filter sizes.  Both the 24-70mm and 70-200mm f/2.8 and my 16-35mm f/4 VR all take 77mm filters.  Believe the 70-200mm f/4 takes 67mm filters.    Everyone makes their own trade offs and you are right to consider thread sizes. 
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: langier on December 29, 2014, 08:43:16 pm
Of the two Nikkor 24mm zooms, I prefer the 24-120 for the weight and the extra 50mm reach. With good craft I find it does as well as my 24-70 for most of my shooting. Of course, your results will vary!

Why not rent the pair for a week and shoot the same images with each and then decide?
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: shadowblade on December 30, 2014, 01:30:32 am
I know we are back to test versus real world discussion, but if you look around at images you will see the 24-70mm f/2.8 Nikkor used by most Nikon shooting professionals.  Images from it are omnipresent.  I have no RECENT 3rd party lens experience so can't comment. 

I started photography at 18 reading 2 John Shaw books.  He was basically a prime lens shooter because of the weaknesses in zoom lenses.  Though he has always like the 80-200mm f/2.8 and now the 70-200mm f/2.8.  Now if you Google John Shaw gear"  you find out that the only prime lenses in his bag are the 3 T/S lenses and 500mm f/4.  He shoots both the 24-20mm f/2.8G and 24-120mm f/4G VR. 

One concern I have packing is Circular Polarizer and ND filter sizes.  Both the 24-70mm and 70-200mm f/2.8 and my 16-35mm f/4 VR all take 77mm filters.  Believe the 70-200mm f/4 takes 67mm filters.    Everyone makes their own trade offs and you are right to consider thread sizes. 

I wouldn't agree with that. The photographers you tend to see are those who shoot weddings, sports, music and other events - photojournalistic styles of photography. The 24-70 lends itself well to this. But there are plenty of pros shooting for advertising, product shots, propertyas well as creative/artistic work (e.g. landscapes) who are far less likely to use it.

The Canon 24-70 holds up well among these photographers because it has primelike image quality. But I wouldn't use the Nikon one for an application where image quality is paramount and convenience secondary.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: lelouarn on December 30, 2014, 02:57:17 am
Just to throw a wrench in the spanner...
Why not try a Sony alpha 7R, with metabones adapter ? You would get to keep your Canon lenses, and have access to the wonderful Sony 36Mpix sensor. Sure, AF is really slow (and accurate), but for landscapes it doesn't really matter. If you have the Canon 24-70 f/2.8II, you'll even have the best optical quality in a zoom (better than the Tamron & Nikon).
Rumours are that Canon might get a 50Mpix out this year (but it's just a rumor) so this could be an intermediate solution.
Just a thought...
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: Ludwig Nobel on December 30, 2014, 03:51:09 am
Dean,

I have purchased a D810 recently because I don't believe Canon will come out with anything much better than my 5D2 anytime soon (for IQ, especially DR).
I went for (among other lenses) the Tamron 24-70 because I shoot a lot indoors with less than ideal lighting, so stabilisation is a great plus for me.
I can't compare it directly with the Canon 24-70 Mk1 that I have since the bodies are too different, but the Tamron is definitely a winner. I rented both the Tamron and the Nikon before making this decision, didn't see much of a difference between these two, but the Tamron has stabilisation and is cheaper and is definitely sharp enough for me, actually very sharp stopped down a little bit. A prime lens will be better, but I think you know this and are willing to compromise for convenience.
I can recommend the Tamron without any hesitation, the IQ and build quality is much higher than the price (compared to the Nikon) would let you assume.

Ludwig
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on December 30, 2014, 09:54:20 am
First, thanks to everyone who has commented. All of the different perspectives are actually very helpful.

While DxO and others have reviews, charts, and graphs that all show essentially the same things, the most compelling lens comparisons I found between the Tamron and Nikon 24-70mm lenses are:
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=618&Camera=614&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=786&CameraComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=0

The lens comparison tool also makes it possible to compare the Canon 24-70-II I use now with the Tamron:
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=787&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=786&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=0

And with the Nikon (in a more general way since the lenses are mounted on different cameras):
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=787&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=618&CameraComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=0

Frankly, using optics that are worse than I've got in front of a sensor that's better makes this entire idea seem a lot less worthwhile. The Tamron lens may be "close enough", assuming it has no big issues with flare, usability, or other things that don't show in the charts. That's what led me to post my initial question here regarding the Tamron.

Just to throw a wrench in the spanner...
Why not try a Sony alpha 7R, with metabones adapter ? You would get to keep your Canon lenses, and have access to the wonderful Sony 36Mpix sensor. Sure, AF is really slow (and accurate), but for landscapes it doesn't really matter. If you have the Canon 24-70 f/2.8II, you'll even have the best optical quality in a zoom (better than the Tamron & Nikon).
Rumours are that Canon might get a 50Mpix out this year (but it's just a rumor) so this could be an intermediate solution.
Just a thought...
I never thought seriously about using a Sony AR7 with a Metabones adapter and my current lenses, but the more I thought about your idea the more sense it made. For landscapes I don't care about things like slow AF. I spent part of this morning searching for online info and, like all of this so far, there's way more consider than I would have guessed. I'd need to look further into the compressed RAW format Sony uses, but what really bothers me is the Sony shutter vibration issue and the fact that there are many reports about issues/glitches in the Metabones adapter. Those include occasionally (some report as many as 1 in 10 times) needing to remove and remount the adapter after the camera is powered on to get the camera to recognize a lens is attached, sample to sample variability in centering of the lens, and lens mounts that range from "nice and tight" to so tight people think they'll break a lens by turning it so hard. Getting a "good" sample may be achievable but compromising reliability isn't acceptable. Having a better sensor doesn't matter if I miss shots because the camera won't recognize that a lens is attached unless I re-seat everything. Still, I really want to like this solution and it warrants a little more research and thought. Thanks for making me think outside the box.

The Canon rumors sites are like supermarket tabloids, only worse. They have said Canon would release a high resolution body at every major show that has happened in the last several years. They also said the 7D-II would be released at Photokina 2012. These sites repeat rumors until they eventually come true, something like a blind pig finding an acorn. Perhaps the rumor will come true in 2015, or not.

Ludwig: Thank you! This is the kind of info I was looking for.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: lelouarn on December 30, 2014, 10:30:02 am
Like you, I was also very worried about using Canon lenses on a Sony. I read a lot of reviews, and was actually very skeptical. The issues that you mention make sense. Using an adapter is probably a "risky business", with mechanical problems (non planar adapter, tightness, etc).
Probably I was lucky. My adapter is nice and tight (and the beginning, very tight), and I can't see any asymmetry in the images. Taking the lens off definitely requires more force than on the native Canon. My 24-70 f/2.8II looks sharp side to side on the Sony.

As to the shutter shock on the A7R. It's likely there, but I haven't seen it. I am sure one can find a shutter speed / lens combo, where some sharpness is lost due to this effect. Perhaps even to the level of going from 36Mpix resolution to 20Mpix ? But you still have that Sony Dynamic Range. Again, perhaps I have been lucky.
So just make sure you can return the Metabones if it's out of whack, and try a few from different batches. Last resort, you can get the Zeiss 24-70mm f/4 for the Sony, which isn't bad at all (I hear, I'm happy with the my "CanSony" combo - it was my backup plan, if the Metabones turned out to be a dud). All of this is still cheaper than the Nikon+24-70 combo, which I considered also before going the A7R route.

Good luck :-)
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: BobDavid on December 30, 2014, 11:17:02 am
One thing to keep in mind, current premium Nikon lenses (Nano coated) are tuned for consistent  rendering throughout lineup. Introducing a third-party lens, albeit excellent, will paint differently.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on December 30, 2014, 12:14:01 pm
One thing to keep in mind, current premium Nikon lenses (Nano coated) are tuned for consistent  rendering throughout lineup. Introducing a third-party lens, albeit excellent, will paint differently.

Thanks, Bob. Things like that are easily taken for granted, especially when one has used only OEM lenses for over 20 years.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: MatthewCromer on December 30, 2014, 03:46:05 pm
Agree with the others that if you want a portable landscape solution the Sony Alpha 7R is the way to go, not a Nikon D810.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: Colorado David on December 30, 2014, 04:14:07 pm
Erik Stensland, Images of Rocky Mountain National Park, now shoots the Nikon D810.  He was a devoted Canon shooter for years and switched to the D800e.  He has since begun using the D810.  It is safe to say that the majority of what he shoots is a long walk from the car.  He can also shoot whatever he chooses to shoot and buys his own gear.  No sponsorship money involved.  Take a look at his work at imagesofrmnp.com  Go to the new images page under the photos drop down menu.  I really respect his work and have connection with him.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on December 30, 2014, 05:34:25 pm
Thanks, Bob. Things like that are easily taken for granted, especially when one has used only OEM lenses for over 20 years.

I guess we should all just be thankful, because the Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 is 7-8 years old and when introduced it was the considered the pinnacle of optic quality for an AF lens in that range.  If all the other companies have caught up and/or passed it then everyone benefits.

As to weight, I can't comment on the Sony body, but the Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 is significantly heavier than the D810!!  I do admit that combo is quite the package when your holding it, but I don't handhold often as I use a monopod/tripod a significant portion of the time.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: Colorado David on December 30, 2014, 05:44:04 pm
I know that people want to save weight where they can and I do too.  The OP didn't say if he planned to use this package hiking.  If I'm stepping away from the car for more than a little distance, I'm carrying a backpack that has water that weighs more than my camera and lens.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on December 30, 2014, 06:20:14 pm
I know that people want to save weight where they can and I do too.  The OP didn't say if he planned to use this package hiking.  If I'm stepping away from the car for more than a little distance, I'm carrying a backpack that has water that weighs more than my camera and lens.

Somewhere above I explained that by "small and portable" I only meant that I don't want to carry a big pile of prime lenses, which is an alternative I considered and rejected. I do what I do now carrying Canon 1-series bodies and their 24-70-II in a pack with 5 more lenses and other stuff that's so heavy I can hardly lift it. I take out what I don't need if I hike, but relatively speaking a D810 and the lenses in question is considerably lighter.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on December 30, 2014, 06:42:58 pm
Interesting reviews here
http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/Nikon_vs_Tamron_24-70mm_comparison/
showing that the Nikon performs best at longer distances

Here's another review showing the Nikon as a better performer.
http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2013/01/a-24-70mm-system-comparison

So my problem now is that while overall system performance may be better, there is no 24-70mm zoom that equals the performance of the Canon model I use now. Buying a lens that's not as good to put in front of a better image sensor really bothers me, and the only way to avoid that is buying and carrying a pile of primes, which I really don't want to do. Metabones is looking better...
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: E.J. Peiker on December 30, 2014, 08:19:57 pm
There is no other 24-70 as good as Canons 24-70 f/2.8 II but does it really matter would be a legit question I think.  From what you ahve described as your use, my guess is that the vast majority of the time you are shooting at f/5.6 or smaller apertures where the differences really start to disappear.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: uaiomex on December 30, 2014, 09:15:41 pm
I second that. I bought one for my 6D. Excellent IQ and built quality. Estabilization superb. I sold it because the zoom ring moves "counter canon". With the Nikon it will be perfect.
Eduardo

The Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC is currently the best 24-70 optically with a Nikon mount.  It's marginally better than the Nikon 24-70 for resolution but has slightly more linear distortions (corrected by most RAW converters if automatic lens corrections are turned on) and is stabilized.  The lens is a little more plasticky than the Nikon (or Canon 24-70) but still built relatively well.  If I ever lose or destroy my Nikon 24-70, I would buy this, get better optics, get stabilization if I want it, and pay less money.  Hope this helps.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: BobDavid on December 31, 2014, 12:57:09 am
I've got a pristine Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8  for sell. It's listed on Fred Miranda and LL. It is a 10. I've had it for 18 months and have used it on only a few occasions. I have migrated over to M43 (Olympus) due to arthritis. I am not comfortable handling the D800. The 24-70 has less than 500 clicks. It is tack sharp throughout the range. Pictures are on the FM buy & sell forum. I am asking $1395 (firm) plus $15 shipping CONUS. It comes with UV and CPL filters, the box, papers, caps, hood, and bag. I am the only owner, and I purchased it from B & H.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: marcmccalmont on December 31, 2014, 04:54:30 am
I have a bunch of Leica R's with Nikon mounts my favorite is my 28-90 superb. I purchased the Tamron 24-70 because of the stabilization and it is so good it holds its own against the Leica!
Marc
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on January 01, 2015, 08:34:33 am
There is no other 24-70 as good as Canons 24-70 f/2.8 II but does it really matter would be a legit question I think.  From what you ahve described as your use, my guess is that the vast majority of the time you are shooting at f/5.6 or smaller apertures where the differences really start to disappear.

It's definitely a legit question. Unfortunately the longer distance "landscape test" (http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/Nikon_vs_Tamron_24-70mm_comparison/) at F/8 shows a big difference in favor of the Nikon lens at the edge of the image, and they explain why. In the test using flat resolution charts each image (center, corner, etc) is focused separately to keep any field curvature from screwing up results. Here the Tamron is clearly better. The "landscape test" is focused in the center, and the edges of the Tamron image in these tests is dramatically softer than the Nikon all the way through F/8 which is the smallest aperture tested. At the same time every other test I've seen shows the Nikon as having off the charts CA at every aperture and sharpness that's so-so. It's something of a dilemma.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: E.J. Peiker on January 02, 2015, 09:41:08 am
It's definitely a legit question. Unfortunately the longer distance "landscape test" (http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/Nikon_vs_Tamron_24-70mm_comparison/) at F/8 shows a big difference in favor of the Nikon lens at the edge of the image, and they explain why. In the test using flat resolution charts each image (center, corner, etc) is focused separately to keep any field curvature from screwing up results. Here the Tamron is clearly better. The "landscape test" is focused in the center, and the edges of the Tamron image in these tests is dramatically softer than the Nikon all the way through F/8 which is the smallest aperture tested. At the same time every other test I've seen shows the Nikon as having off the charts CA at every aperture and sharpness that's so-so. It's something of a dilemma.

Thanks, I had not seen that test although neither the Canon nor the Nikon mount sample I tested gave up anything to the Nikon 24-70 which, as you state, has some pretty astronomical CA in comparison.  There's no free lunch with zooms although the Canon comes closest :)  Perhaps we are back to an a7 with the Canon lens attached :)
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DaveCurtis on January 03, 2015, 08:29:46 pm
I'm still in the Canon camp with a 5D3. What is currently keeping me there is the new breed of Canon lenses - 17mm TSE, 24-70 f2.8, 70 -200mm f2.8 and the new 400mm f4 ii. I just wish they would pull finger with a new sensor.  How hard can it be ?
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: shadowblade on January 03, 2015, 10:00:53 pm
I'm still in the Canon camp with a 5D3. What is currently keeping me there is the new breed of Canon lenses - 17mm TSE, 24-70 f2.8, 70 -200mm f2.8 and the new 400mm f4 ii. I just wish they would pull finger with a new sensor.  How hard can it be ?

As a landscape photographer, I am somewhat lucky in the fact that I don't need AF (except when I am not shooting landscapes) and can use Canon (or other) lenses on the A7r. Sony's compressed RAW is nowhere near as good as Nikon's RAW, but still gives a better image quality and more detail than Canon.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on January 04, 2015, 09:47:59 am
I'm still in the Canon camp with a 5D3. What is currently keeping me there is the new breed of Canon lenses - 17mm TSE, 24-70 f2.8, 70 -200mm f2.8 and the new 400mm f4 ii. I just wish they would pull finger with a new sensor.  How hard can it be ?

It's either pretty hard or Canon has been more interested in developing everything under the sun except high DR sensors. I suspect it's both. I have no desire to move to Nikon for wildlife photography but it's a different story for landscapes. I'd have purchased a D810 months ago if they made a better 24-70mm zoom. Given the usefulness and popularity of that focal length range I'm amazed they haven't upgraded it. The Nikon 70-200 f/4 seems fine, but I'm not sure why they didn't bother weather/dust sealing it.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on January 04, 2015, 11:13:25 am
I'd have purchased a D810 months ago if they made a better 24-70mm zoom.

We all make our own choices, but I find this somewhat silly.  I'm all for testing cameras and lenses, but one must understand how the test results apply in the real world. I know for example that the DR of the 810 only really buys me anything in extreme situations.  I also know that lens test on flat field targets do not directly correlate to real world shooting.  We all want to get the best we can from the money we spend on gear, but the Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 is probably the most utilized lens for commercial photographs, landscape and otherwise. 

If we look at the 14-24mm f/2.8G, the 16-35 f/4G VR and the 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G, the 14-24mm is clearly the best optical performer and any test will show that.  But if you shoot 3 images with these 3 lenses and process and print them with the same care, in all but the most extreme cases, you wouldn't be able to tell which were shot with what lens.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: jwstl on January 04, 2015, 02:30:49 pm
An upgraded 24-70 2.8 would probably include VR and possibly better performance at 2.8 but I doubt you'll see a big jump in performance from 8-16. If that's what you need from a 24-70, either the current Nikon or Tamron would work well.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on January 05, 2015, 07:59:20 pm
An upgraded 24-70 2.8 would probably include VR and possibly better performance at 2.8 but I doubt you'll see a big jump in performance from 8-16. If that's what you need from a 24-70, either the current Nikon or Tamron would work well.

The funny part, considering this thread, is that it is rumored that an upgrade to the 24-70mm has just not been a priority because it is already very good and well bought.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: joneil on January 06, 2015, 08:35:30 am
  My 24-70mm is a fantastic lens, and works great on my D800.  But for long hikes, it is a heavy pain in the butt.  If I am not walking far, or just in one area, I love to use it.   But for long hikes in the woods, or just a day I plan to do a lot of walking, I am using mostly primes myself now. 

   There is no perfect answer.   Any brand of zoom that will give you all you want optically is going to be big, heavy and expensive.  You use what you need in relation to what you are shooting.

     The other thing, and forgive me, i do not mean to be cruel, but this whole thread is giving me a bit of a good laugh.   Years ago, in the days of film, you know, when we all still lived in caves,  wore bearskins  and connected online using 300 baud acustic modems,   we used to have this same arguement.   Nikon had the best bodies but Canon had the best lenses.    In many ways, digital hasn't changed a thing, it has just amplified old arguements.
:)

have a good one
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on January 06, 2015, 09:42:19 am
The other thing, and forgive me, i do not mean to be cruel, but this whole thread is giving me a bit of a good laugh.   Years ago, in the days of film, you know, when we all still lived in caves,  wore bearskins  and connected online using 300 baud acustic modems,   we used to have this same arguement.   Nikon had the best bodies but Canon had the best lenses.    In many ways, digital hasn't changed a thing, it has just amplified old arguements.
:)

have a good one
Two major changes since film:

1. Advancement in manufacturing technology has made the manufacture of optics and lens mechanicals much easier and more consistent such that, in general, lenses today perform better.[/li][/list]

2. On the other hand, 35mm film basically had about 8-10MP of usable data and optics usually outperformed the film.  Today, we have hit the point where the sensor can outperform the lens.

Back in film days it was a wash better body/better lenses.  Now, if one assumes Canon lenses are superior to Nikon, then if/when Canon achieves better sensors, they will have an instant performance advantage.  All this only matters at the marginal cases where one is printing poster size prints or trying to display electronically at gigantic sizes
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on January 06, 2015, 04:06:39 pm
My sincere thanks for all the replies, but this has gone beyond anything I intended. I only asked about aspects of the Tamron 24-70mm lens that don't show in the test charts, but the ancillary replies have actually been quite helpful.

I've already got the best performance Canon is able to offer, I understand what extremes are, and if I didn't want more performance specifically at the extremes I wouldn't be investigating this. What I don't understand is how ignoring lens issues at one "extreme" is any different than ignoring some shadow noise and lack of DR at different "extremes". Both matter sometimes, and when they don't the equipment one uses doesn't make much difference. Using the terms of dswager, I have to wonder whether it's worthwhile to give up a lens that makes no difference "in all but the most extreme cases" for DR that "only really buys me anything in [different] extreme situations". If it's a wash I can save a lot of money and just keep on doing what I've been doing. I think answers, if there are any, depend on exactly what extremes are in question.

Unfortunately, going into this I wasn't prepared to trade corner and edge sharpness for more dynamic range, not to mention much more distortion at both ends of the zoom range and astronomical CA. If all the 24-70mm lenses in question (Canon/Nikon/Tamron) produced similar results across the frame by F/8 I wouldn't care, but every test I've seen shows that's not the case, and the differences are far from subtle. Before any feathers are ruffled I'm not saying any of this equipment falls into the lousy range. It's all shades of good, and I haven't ruled out buying some of it, but I think it's important to know what the trade-offs are.

If I go forward with this I'd get the Nikon 24-70 lens for reasons that include sample to sample variability, corner sharpness when center focused at real world distances, and other characteristics that match the 70-200 F/4. I still think the 24-70mm lenses in question give up a lot to the Canon version, which is comparable to many primes. I also think the 70-200 F/4 is as good or better than the Canon version optically. The lack of weather/dust sealing bothers me because on multiple occasions I've encountered sudden sand/dust storms where I think it matters, and it's not uncommon for me to shoot in the rain. Still, it doesn't bother me enough to carry the much heavier and sealed F/2.8 lens. I'd think differently if there were a tangible optical advantage at smaller apertures.

Finally, I'd just like to say that proprietary lens mounts really suck. You may now return to your regularly scheduled program.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on January 06, 2015, 04:50:19 pm
I've already got the best performance Canon is able to offer, I understand what extremes are, and if I didn't want more performance specifically at the extremes I wouldn't be investigating this. What I don't understand is how ignoring lens issues at one "extreme" is any different than ignoring some shadow noise and lack of DR at different "extremes". Both matter sometimes, and when they don't the equipment one uses doesn't make much difference. Using the terms of dswager, I have to wonder whether it's worthwhile to give up a lens that makes no difference "in all but the most extreme cases" for DR that "only really buys me anything in [different] extreme situations". If it's a wash I can save a lot of money and just keep on doing what I've been doing. I think answers, if there are any, depend on exactly what extremes are in question.

If you are looking at 'general' performance, then yes I agree.  But if you shoot most often at one extreme, then it makes sense to give up something at the other extreme.  I shoot both landscapes (stopped down) and portraits/candids (closer to wide open).  The current 24-70mm is fine for me because stopped down performs as I want it too and wide open, I don't mind softer corners because I want them softer anyway.  It is why the 85mm f/1.4D is fine to me even though it is much softer at the edges/corners than the new 85mm f/1.4G.  What I shoot with it negates the benefit.

And considering the new 300mm f/4G VR (http://www.nikonusa.com/en/Nikon-Products/Product/Camera-Lenses/AF-S-NIKKOR-300mm-f%252F4E-PF-ED-VR.html?cid=web-0115-300mm) that Nikon introduced today (3" shorter and 1/2 the weight), I am now wondering if Nikon won't release a new smaller, lighter, VR version of the 24-70mm f/2.8.  Most people indicated that a VR version of this lens would be too big and heavy.  Not so sure anymore.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on January 06, 2015, 07:11:54 pm
...I am now wondering if Nikon won't release a new smaller, lighter, VR version of the 24-70mm f/2.8.
There certainly seems to be some demand for a VR lens in this range, and that probably gives Tamron lots of customers. I'm just not sure whether the technology used to make the 300mm smaller and lighter is readily applicable to a zoom lens, and if it would be economically viable. Stabilization made a big difference for me on long lenses, but because I always shoot from a tripod it doesn't interest me much in the shorter focal lengths.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: joneil on January 07, 2015, 09:27:43 am

Back in film days it was a wash better body/better lenses.  Now, if one assumes Canon lenses are superior to Nikon, then if/when Canon achieves better sensors, they will have an instant performance advantage.  All this only matters at the marginal cases where one is printing poster size prints or trying to display electronically at gigantic sizes


-snip-
   My point was NEVER which was better, film or digital, Nikon or Canon.  No, my point is this:  30 years ago, at camera clubs, in local photo newspapers, in letters to the editor in some of the photo magazines, and later, before everyone had the internet and we all used BBS systems (remember Fidonet anyone), and even when the internet first started, before sites like this when we used to all chat on usenet groups (anyone remember those?), the *exact same arguments* we are having now took place back then.

   Frankly I don't know if Nikon or Canon had better film bodies or not, I never cared then, don't now either.   But the point is, I was there, saw it, heard it, remember it very clearly.  We used to have those agruments in amatuer astronomy all the time.    Many people felt that Nikon ahd better film bodies for astro-photography (FM and FM2), but many felt the Canon lenses  were better at pinpoint star images.  

      I have some old photo magazines, World war 2 era, around here, and i remember in one of them reading something about should one use a Wollensak or a Kodak lens on a 4x5 graphic press camera.

    So although technology has advanced greatly, for lack of better word, IMO, the "fanboy arguements" have remained the same.

    Technology changes, human nature does not.  

    At some point in the future, when we are all using 500 mp holographic cameras, I bet you dollars to donuts the same arguements will still be taking place too.

    But if you want some advice from a crusty old, grey haired fart like myself, the bottom line is this - get your butt out there and just enjoy photography.  Do photography more than you talk about it.  Life goes by too fast, and there is no reset switch to do things over.   You can waste far too much time getting into which is better.  At the end of the day, for me, I would prefer walking out there in the bush or on the beach with a Lomo camera than spending a day inside talking about photography.  Both Nikon and Canon make superb gear, screw who is better, just get one or the other, get out there and do it.
good luck
:)
 
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on January 28, 2015, 11:54:03 am
I hate to revisit this topic, but I just can't seem to understand the consternation over the Nikkor 24-70 f/2.8G.  Yes, added VR would be nice.  And Yes, the added range of the 24-120mm f/4VR is great. 

The fundamental fact remains that the Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G is by far used to make more images by professional Nikon shooters than any other lens and in all types of photography from sports, to weddings to landscape.  Every time I look at a video or article, it is almost always the 24-70mm that is being used by the photographer. 

Nikon Behind the Scenes: Capturing Fast Indoor Sports in Challenging Light Video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=43yVrUFk5PY)

In addition to the video above, I was reading an article on image chaser titled Moose Peterson Helps You Prep A Photo Adventure Checklist (http://www.imagechaser.com/moose-peterson-helps-prep-photo-adventure-checklist/).  The tidbit I pulled out was that while John Shaw and Moose Peterson's camera bags share only one lens in common...The 24-70mm f/2.8G! 

Bottom Line...If you don't think the 24-70mm f/2.8G is good enough for you, it is on you. 
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: Lightsmith on January 29, 2015, 06:46:09 pm
I have been shooting with the Nikon 24-70mm lens since 2008 and not experience any problems with CA and that is with tens of thousands of images shot with this lens. With the D810 and shooting RAW you will have to use the Capture NX-D software and it will adjust for CA and any other lens aberrations when you convert the file to a TIFF. I have yet to find a sharper zoom lens than this Nikon and it is sharper than many of the Nikon and Canon primes I have used in its focal range.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: DeanChriss on January 30, 2015, 03:13:04 pm
Every controlled test I've seen of the Nikon 24-70 shows more purple fringing around high contrast lines than I'd like, as have some real world photos I've seen. This CA can be fixed in software as long as it's symmetrical, though I've seen reputable reviewers report that their samples also exhibited asymmetrical CA that is not easily fixed in software. There are also controlled tests showing focus blur in full frame corners due to field curvature at long distances, which isn't fixable either. Regardless, I'd prefer the fixable things to be fixed in Adobe Camera Raw instead of Capture NX-D.

A few of many references:
http://www.photozone.de/Reviews/236-nikkor-af-s-24-70mm-f28g-ed-review--test-report (http://www.photozone.de/Reviews/236-nikkor-af-s-24-70mm-f28g-ed-review--test-report)
www.cameralabs.com/reviews/Nikon_Nikkor_AF-S_24-70mm_f2-8G_ED/ (http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/Nikon_Nikkor_AF-S_24-70mm_f2-8G_ED/)
Also see CA numbers on DXO Mark.

You can also compare to the Canon equivalent here and you'll notice some extremely visible differences, even stopped down, especially in the corners. Mouse over the image to compare.
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=787&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=618&CameraComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=0 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=787&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=618&CameraComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=0)

I think the Nikon 24-70 is the best zoom in the range that fits a Nikon, just like Canon sensors are the best sensors that fit into a Canon. Neither fact makes the lens or sensor "stellar", it makes them the best you can get for a particular system. I'm not here to put down anyone's favorite lens, but because I'm after a Nikon system for the sole purpose of improved image quality the Nikon 24-70 isn't the lens I want. I've already decided that the only way I'd do this is with Sigma Art 50mm and 35mm primes plus a Zeiss 25mm prime. I initially said I didn't want primes due to size and weight, but way too much research points to this as the definitive solution. If you compare these, even stopped down beyond F8 to the Nikon zoom, they're clearly superior. They're superior to the Canon zoom too, but by F8 the differences are very small.

FWIW, I'm looking to add this Nikon-based system to what I've got versus switching from one system to the other. I'm not a "fan" of either one, but I'd love to somehow combine the strengths of both, and I also think both have weaknesses.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: armand on January 30, 2015, 03:23:13 pm
I looked into this quite a lot when I got my D750 and I decided to go with the 24-120 F4, but price did make it more palatable (it was 600 off).
For reasons I'm not totally clear yet Thom Hogan sold his 24-70 F2.8 as he was not "happy" with it.

The 24-120 has limitations but it started to grow a little on me, from meh to acceptable. I do shoot often over 70 mm.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on January 30, 2015, 08:03:25 pm
Just so we know the facts.  The image attached is the MTF data from Photozone for the AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8G ED Lens, Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM Lens and Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 DI VC USD Lens.

For those not willing to look at the image:  The Nikon is sharper at all 3 focal lengths and all apertures.  It has worse fall off in the borders and corners wide open than the canon, but even that disadvantage disappears at f/4.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: E.J. Peiker on February 02, 2015, 11:27:18 pm
Is there a link for their testing methodology somewhere?  I ask because I'd like to better understand how they do their tests since the data is a bit different from the tests I've done and several other's I've read.  Not saying they are wrong, at least on their samples, but I would like to understand what they are doing to obtain their results.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on February 03, 2015, 09:47:07 am
Is there a link for their testing methodology somewhere?  I ask because I'd like to better understand how they do their tests since the data is a bit different from the tests I've done and several other's I've read.  Not saying they are wrong, at least on their samples, but I would like to understand what they are doing to obtain their results.

Google is your friend!  Photozone Lens Test FAQ (http://www.photozone.de/lens-test-faq)

Here is my big point: Two lenses that are marginally separated in a specific performance characteristic will tend to perform identical when taken in the field. Lens tests are lab experiments under controlled conditions.  They do not translate directly to field work where uncontrolled/uncontrollable variables interfere limiting performance at a lower point than the lab controlled performance ceiling.  The objective of lens testing then is to weed out poor performers, identify stellar performers (and lenses that outperform their price points) and to identify strengths and weaknesses of a particular lens to assist in buying decisions. 
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: AFairley on February 03, 2015, 12:29:31 pm
Thanks for the link to the Photozone FAQ.  I am assuming that in their tests they focus on the center and let field curvature do its thing.  Am I right?
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on February 03, 2015, 02:18:15 pm
Thanks for the link to the Photozone FAQ.  I am assuming that in their tests they focus on the center and let field curvature do its thing.  Am I right?

Typically, they report the field curvature, but refocus when getting sharpness results for the corners. 
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: alan_b on February 03, 2015, 02:36:17 pm
Looks like there's an updated 24-70 PF VR in the pipeline:
Nikon Rumors (http://nikonrumors.com/2015/02/03/some-interesting-nikon-patents-including-a-nikkor-24-70mm-f2-8-pf-vr-lens.aspx/)
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on February 03, 2015, 08:05:15 pm
Looks like there's an updated 24-70 PF VR in the pipeline:
Nikon Rumors (http://nikonrumors.com/2015/02/03/some-interesting-nikon-patents-including-a-nikkor-24-70mm-f2-8-pf-vr-lens.aspx/)
Just a patent.   Been rumors of a 24-70mm VR for years.  Belive it when they announce it.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: BernardLanguillier on February 03, 2015, 08:58:49 pm
Looks like there's an updated 24-70 PF VR in the pipeline:
Nikon Rumors (http://nikonrumors.com/2015/02/03/some-interesting-nikon-patents-including-a-nikkor-24-70mm-f2-8-pf-vr-lens.aspx/)

Yes, this is getting interesting!

Those are exactly the kind of specs that would make me consider re-investing in such a lens.

We'd just have to see how it behaves with light sources in the frame.

Cheers,
Bernard
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: E.J. Peiker on February 03, 2015, 09:57:42 pm
Google is your friend!  Photozone Lens Test FAQ (http://www.photozone.de/lens-test-faq)

Here is my big point: Two lenses that are marginally separated in a specific performance characteristic will tend to perform identical when taken in the field. Lens tests are lab experiments under controlled conditions.  They do not translate directly to field work where uncontrolled/uncontrollable variables interfere limiting performance at a lower point than the lab controlled performance ceiling.  The objective of lens testing then is to weed out poor performers, identify stellar performers (and lenses that outperform their price points) and to identify strengths and weaknesses of a particular lens to assist in buying decisions.  

Thanks for the link.  It confirmed what I was afraid of and why I asked about the testing methodology.  Their methodology largely invalidates the comparison that you posted earlier IMHO - the tests aren't done on a test bench but rather on the respective camera manufacturer's bodies and therefore the results are sensor dependent.  For a true comparison of the lenses themselves, the test needs to be done in a sensor independent way.  So a Canon lens on a Canon 22mp camera with AA filter resolving approximately the same as the Nikon lens on a 36mp sensor without does not support that the Nikon lens is equivalent or better.  It actually doesn't say much of anything but in general, when lenses are tested on a higher resolution sensor they have higher resolution scores so if the Canon were tested on a 36mp sensor, it would likely outscore the Nikon lens.  This is consistent with my findings when I compared both lenses on an a7R - same sensor on each lens.  The Canon outresolved the Nikon by about 10% and it was pretty consistent across the board.

This directly from the link you provided:

Q: Will the resolution increase with new sensor related technologies ?

To some degree - yes. Assuming the manufacturers will find a way to get rid of the sensor low-pass filter there'll be a substantial gain for instance. Some lenses will also benefit from higher megapixels specifically in the center.
Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: dwswager on February 04, 2015, 10:06:33 am
Thanks for the link.  It confirmed what I was afraid of and why I asked about the testing methodology.  Their methodology largely invalidates the comparison that you posted earlier IMHO - the tests aren't done on a test bench but rather on the respective camera manufacturer's bodies and therefore the results are sensor dependent.  For a true comparison of the lenses themselves, the test needs to be done in a sensor independent way.  So a Canon lens on a Canon 22mp camera with AA filter resolving approximately the same as the Nikon lens on a 36mp sensor without does not support that the Nikon lens is equivalent or better.  It actually doesn't say much of anything but in general, when lenses are tested on a higher resolution sensor they have higher resolution scores so if the Canon were tested on a 36mp sensor, it would likely outscore the Nikon lens.  This is consistent with my findings when I compared both lenses on an a7R - same sensor on each lens.  The Canon outresolved the Nikon by about 10% and it was pretty consistent across the board.

This directly from the link you provided:

Q: Will the resolution increase with new sensor related technologies ?

To some degree - yes. Assuming the manufacturers will find a way to get rid of the sensor low-pass filter there'll be a substantial gain for instance. Some lenses will also benefit from higher megapixels specifically in the center.

If you look closely at Photozone their tests tend to be on like cameras.  In fact, my complaint is that the tests tend to be on older cameras that don't test/stress the lens.  I've not seen a Photozone test done with a D800 or D810.  Most FF nikon are shot on the D3x.  DxOMark does do testing on numerous bodies and you can select your own comparison.  I used PhotoZone's tests here because the Canon people get all pissy over DxOMark because their sensor ratings have the best Canon sensor rated just below the $500 consumer Nikon D5300 sensor.

And, at the end of the day, the camera matters!  How the lens performs ON CAMERA is what counts. 

Title: Re: 24-70 mm Lens for Nikon D810
Post by: E.J. Peiker on February 04, 2015, 12:56:49 pm
If they used a D3x on one and a 5D Mk III on the other, it's at least in the same ballpark.