Six Reasons Why I Won’t Be Buying the New Nikon 24-70 f/2.8 VR Lens

  1. I already have the Nikon 24-70 f/2.8 lens.  This lens has been the workhorse of the Nikon line for years.  It is one of the best performing, sharpest lens in the Nikon lineup.  There’s nothing a newer 24-70 is going to give me that will make my photographs better.
  2. Cost.  At $2400, the new lens is at least $500 more than a new copy of the current 24-70.  That’s a ton of money.  Plus, once the new lens gets into the hands of many, there will be a lot of nice, used 24-70’s hitting the market at $1200-1500.  This is a savings of over $1000.
  3. Don’t really need the VR.  The biggest claim to fame on this lens is the addition of vibration reduction which is not available on the current lens.  While this may be a plus for videographers who want the sharpness of this lens with some vibration reduction, it’s not an issue for still photographers.   Firstly, the range of 24-70 can be easily hand held for most.  Now, if you have shaky hands, perhaps the VR will help.  But for most, you can hand hold the original lens to fairly slow shutter speeds.  Yes, the VR claims to give you several stops slower, but with today’s camera bodies, you can raise the ISO high enough to compensate.  With my D4s, I can shoot all day long at ISO 6400 without any loss of detail and get fast shutter speeds in difficult lighting situations such as concerts or dark event spaces.
  4. Size.  The new lens is even bigger and heavier than the current model.  It outweighs the current version by almost 1/2 pound (200 grams).  While this doesn’t seem like a lot, it is when you are working with it for a long period of time.
  5. Filter size.  While the current 24-70 takes standard 77mm filters, the new one takes 82mm filters.  You may say “so what”?  High quality polarizers or ND filters are expensive.  If you’ve already invested hundreds of dollars in 77mm filters, you’d now have to go out and buy new ones to fit this lens.  A good B+W circular polarizer costs over $200.  Add in 2-4 ND filters at $100 each and you’re now adding on another $500 to the cost of buying this lens.
  6. There’s a good chance that sometime down the road, I may want to ditch all my Nikon gear and move into the mirrorless world.  Right now, the mirrorless cameras just aren’t for me (though I do love my Sony a6000).  They just don’t perform the way my D810 and D4s does.  Yet!  As technology gets better, and I get older, I may make the move.  While this is likely 10 years away or more, it is a reality.  Why invest another $2400 to replace a lens that is just as capable as the new one in virtually every way.  I’d rather spend that money on a trip somewhere to make more images.

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