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4.8 out of 5 stars24
4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 7 October 2015
I bought this lens from Dales in Leeds new for £795 on 2 years finance as that makes Nikon gear affordable for me. Make no mistake this is a pro grade lens. Half the weight and price of the 14-24. It is plastic but it feels solid, well made and every bit a quality product. I use it primarily on a D600 / D750. In use it focuses fast and accurately in all modes and feels perfectly balanced on the camera. The zoom ring is behind the focus ring and can be a little fiddly to use but is a minor inconvenience. I always shoot with distortion control and vignette control on because that's what they are for. The results that this lens produces are extremely sharp and I mean sharp at the centre and this continues to the edges too. At 16mm there are pronounced converging verticals (to be expected). Contrast and colour fidelity seem good. No real negatives what's not to like. The F4 isn't an issue as VR makes it hand holdable at what was once considered crazy low shutter speeds. Bokeh doesn't really apply to wide angles due to depth of field. I tried it with square filters (Cokin Xpro size and there was no noticeable vignetting), a huge plus in my book.
So to conclude, affordable thanks to Dales in Leeds. Great build, good handling and great results, what's not to like.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 20 April 2010
I had the Nikon 17-35mm f2.8 and the Nikon 14-24mm f2.8 lenses but in all honesty the Nikon 14-24mm was rarely used due its heavy weight and less useful zoom range. At 24mm its still pretty wide.

So the 17-35mm became the one I took with me for landscape photography. Its a very good lens - sharp and contrasty.

When the 16-35mm came out I decided to sell the other 2 lenses and just have this one. However for a week I had all 3 lenses and was able to compare them.

Now personally I'm not in to shooting brick walls so I shot the landscape at the bottom of my garden - which does have a few large gardens and houses in it.

At f8 - f11 - the f-stop I most commonly use - I really couldn't tell the difference between the 14-24mm and the 16-35mm. Both produced shots with sharpness from edge to edge - even in extreme corners. The 17-35mm is just as sharp in the centre and edges but goes very slightly mushy in extreme corners. Not a big deal really but does show how good the 16-35mm and 14-24mm lenses are. Overall the 14-24mm does seem to the sharper of the 3 lenses though not by a massive amount. The 17-35 and 16-35mm are very similar in sharpness except in extreme corners where the 16-35mm wins out.

A comparison at f4 / 24mm showed the 16-35mm outperformed the 17-35mm and got very close to the sharpness of the 14-24mm. I'd expected to see a lot of softness wide open so delighted to see it remained acceptably sharp even in the corners.

I also compared the 17-35mm and 16-35mm in terms of contrast and colours and the 16-35mm was a subtle but clear winner. It just looks more colourful. I couldn't measure it but when you flick between identical photos with identical settings the 16-35mm has a slightly more pleasing colour - punchier and somehow brighter despite both shots being identical and both f11 at 1/200 of a second. Again the differences are not massive.

With the extra 1mm at the wider end and having vibration reduction the 16-35mm is a clear winner for me. However if you already have the 17-35mm the difference is not so massive you need to rush out and buy the 16-35mm - in fact the differences are fairly subtle. Ok the 16-35mm has sharper extreme corners but honestly how important are the extreme corners to most photographs?

The only downside to the 16-35mm is its slightly longer in length than the 17-35mm. I can just about squeeze in my D700 + 17-35mm in a small camera case but the 16-35mm requires the larger case I normally use for my D700 + telephoto lens. Weight wise the 16-35mm is 50g lighter than the 17-35mm.

I suspect in real life photography the 16-35mm and 17-35mm are so close in sharpness and quality no one will tell the difference unless you do 10 foot by 20 foot posters and they look hard at the far corners! The 14-24mm is the sharper lens but again in most cases you won't tell the difference without close examination on high magnification. Its downside is weight and limited zoom range.

I've had chance to test the VR ( vibration reduction ) feature of the lens. At home I can easily get sharp shots handheld at 1/4 of a second. Below that has improved impossible but 1/4 is pretty good for hand held. A visit to Lydford Gorge waterfall allowed me to test the VR in the real world and it worked pretty well. However at 1/4 second the number of blurred shots was about 60% - in part due to being rushed by people behind me trying to get past or simply being on unstable ground. I did however manage to get a few good and sharp shots of the rushing water - with the 1/4 ensuring the fast flowing water had a nice smooth look. Without VR it'd required a tripod to get any sharp shots - which would be pretty tricky on parts of Lydford Gorge due to its narrow paths and quantities of people
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on 10 February 2014
I spent a long time wondering if buying the Nikon 16-35mm was going to be a wise choice.

I had intended going for the Nikon 14-24mm f2.8, I already own the Nikon 24-70mm f2.8 so it seemed at first to be a no brainer given the 14-24mm's reputation for image quality.

Then I did some online research, a whole day in the end, and the choice became increasingly less obvious. Opinion was pretty much divided, no one argued the quality of the 14-24mm but in other areas the choice was less clear cut.

I decided to go back to the drawing board and re-evaluate how I would be using the lens.
The lens was for intended for landscape so the 16-35mm on an FX body was a good focal length for this.

I like to shoot in inclement weather, the Nikon 14-24mm's inability to accept filters so having the front element exposed to wind, sand, sea spray and rain without the protection of a UV filter would have been a major concern.

The 16-35mm is an f4, so down a stop on the 14-24mm, and unlike many landscape photographers I rarely use a tripod as I find it gets in the way. Photographing whilst standing on slippery wet boulders can be tricky enough without a tripod to send you flying, so I tend to opt for a monopod or hand hold. So the Vibration Reduction had appeal.

Also the for me focal length had an advantage, 16-35mm covers a good spectrum of wide angle use. I try to plan for the lens I need before I go out and shoot. Changing lenses in rough weather is not a good idea to me, not only the risk of unwanted debris entering the camera or rear of the lens, but also the risk of dropping it.

On this basis I opted for the 16-35mm f4. So how have I found performance?
I ran some tests as far as I was able against my Nikon 24-70 f2.8, I took some shots at 24mm and 35mm on both lenses at the same f-stops, f4 and f8 with my Nikon D800 mounted on a tripod. I then blew these up to 300% in PhotoshopCC on a 27 inch monitor. This way exceeded what I would require of the lens.

At 35mm the Nikon 24-70mm appeared to have the advantage in terms of edge to edge sharpness, also for some unknown reason the the 16-35mm seemed to loose colour saturation compared to the 24-70mm. At f8 the 16-35mm was better though not the colour. This was simply adjusted in Photoshop.

At 24mm the situation reversed and the results were very noticeably better than those from the 24-70mm at both f stops. The colour saturation problem also disappeared.

I also ran some tests at 16mm, though I could not make any direct comparisons, the shots were taken in a conservatory with white chairs that had a wicker pattern on them. At f4 there was no real detail on the chairs at the image edges, at f8 the image improved very dramatically with good detail across the entire frame. This improved still further at f11.

All images taken at on the Nikon 16-35mm at f8 and viewed at 100% in Photoshop were impeccable.

In the field.
If I was still having doubts about my choice these did disappear once out in the wilds. This is a lovely lens to use. At first I thought it felt bit light and plastic for a pro Nikon lens, but once on the D800 it felt very well balanced and a very comfortable weight. It is fully weather sealed and suffered no mishaps when shooting close up to water falls despite getting fairly wet.

The quality of the images has not disappointed in any way. I think what counts are the results you get in the field, and this lens really delivers, also I experienced no issues at 35mm.

Also there is a significant price difference between the 14-24mm and the 16-35mm, large enough in fact to buy another piece of kit.

Perhaps if I ever take up interior photography I will take another look at the 14-24mm.
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on 16 April 2014
Though I also have the Nikkor 14~24mm lens, I often grab this lens when I need to have a filter - be the filter a neutral density or a polarizer for scenery - or simply a protective skylight filter when I'm in potentially dodgy situations, such as photographing political demonstrations "close up and personal" or where there could be sand and debris blowing in the wind. Be aware that beyond thin skylight filters, thicker filters will cause minor vignetting at the wider focal lengths, but that can be remedied in post processing.

The VR function is interesting in that it's amazing how slow of a shutter speed can be used handheld if one is carefully braced at the 16mm setting. But possibly of longer-term interest is that having VR on a wide angle lens may make greater sense when used while shooting video - which may be more in the futures of many photographers who are today shooting stills exclusively.

In any case, this is a truly sharp lens and supposedly even sharper than the Nikkor 14~24mm lens, but I honestly can't see the difference in images from the two lenses.
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on 2 May 2014
As I have several Nikon lenses, I purchased this one as a lens to use when I did not want to carry much equipment on a day's shooting. It is wonderful at every focal length, and enables large prints to be made, showing its great sharpness.
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on 10 October 2010
I've had this lens for a while now. Initially I wasn't sure and nearly sent it back, but the more I use it the more I appreciate it. It was a toss up between this lens and the Nikon 14-24 2.8. I decided that the 14-24 was just too bulky and heavy to carry around all day, and that bulbous front glass was way too exposed to damage for my liking, not to say that it isn't an amazing lens - it is - but perhaps a bit too specialised for my tastes as a keen amateur rather than a pro. Having recently tried the 14-24 on my camera it has confirmed that I made the right choice as the other issue with the 14-24 is that although it is 2.8, taking sharp handheld shots in low light was very much hit and miss, whereas with the 16-35 VR I can nail a sharp shot more often than I could with the 2.8. At the end of the day it's horses for courses, if I could afford both, I'd probably have both as they both have slightly different uses - as a pure landscape lens the 14-24 on a tripod would edge ahead in image quality and the extra 2mm is always useful, but as I could only buy one, I'm glad I chose the 16-35 f/4 VR as it is a much more portable lens, takes filters and fits easily in a regular sized camera bag. Being approximately the same size a the 24-70 and 70-300, I don't need to buy another 'day' bag, whereas the 2.8 is huge at one end and simply does not fit into most bags. I'd suggest you try both out on your camera if you can't decide which to choose.

Results are sharp across the frame, and images show great colour reproduction and excellent contrast. If you go out of your way to create it, you can get flare but it is extremely good in that respect. It is a heavy lens if you are not used to the Nikon pro range of lenses but is one of the lighter pro lenses and does not become uncomfortable to carry around all day, even on a D300s with grip, or a D3s.
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on 14 July 2013
I'm very satisfied with this lens. I have it on a Nikon D800 and my experience so far as been great. Image quality is spectacular. It is a bit heavy, but it's on the light side compared to other lenses like the Nikkor 85mm f/1.4. I highly recommend it.
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on 27 August 2015
Date of purchase: 03/08/2015
There are far more detailed reviews here as well as on the net; so I'll keep it simple:
1) the 16-35mm is lighter (680g versus 1000g) than the 14-24mm. One can argue that if you're shooting landscape and the lens is mounted on a tripod, the weight doesn't matter. Well, who's going to carry it there? :)
2) the 16-35mm is cheaper (£829 versus approx. £1200) than the 14-24mm. That's highly subjective to your budget, but £370 is a considerable sum which can be invested back in your photography gear.
3) As if the 14-24mm isn't bulky enough, please Google pictures of the 14-24mm with the Lee filter system; it's an absolute behemoth.
4) The 16-35mm range on this is far more practical allowing it to act as a landscape/street photography hybrid. The 2mm loss on the wide end is considerable but at 16mm you are already quite wide. If you are going to lose sleep over the 2mm, then get the 14-24mm, simple as.
5) F2.8 to F4 is a full one stop reduction... that's definitely a big deal if you're considering this for night sky photography; if that's the primary use then by all means grab the 14-24mm! However my hypothesis is this is a primarily a landescape lens in which case you'll have a lot more in focus wide open at F4 than at F2.8. It terms of light loss, given that both are likely to be mounted on a tripod (see point above), then really the F2.8 is no longer as a big loss at it first appears (no pun intended).
6)The addition of VR may encourage you to use this handheld, a far more enjoyable experience than a tripod/cable release combo.

I hope I have convinced you to save yourself and your wallet some serious cash which you can spend on some filters, etc
I'll be posting some sample photos following the bank holiday weekend so you can judge the lens sharpness, distortion for yourselves etc
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on 8 May 2014
We bought this over the 14-24 for it's price but also the ability to use our filter system without needing a special adapter. It's fast, sharp and while heavy, isn't too heavy with a D800 to be a problem carrying around.
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on 5 September 2012
I purchased this lens after much deliberation over which wide angle to go with for my D800. The list included this, the 14-24, 17-35 and the 24 1.4. It has proven to be an excellent choice. The 14-24 is of course fantastic but I use a lot of filters. The 17-35 has a great rep but the newer 16-35 has been shown to be sharper across the frame and it has VR. The 24 1.4 was very tempting but at nearly twice the price I did not see the benefit when I do very few low light hand held wide shots.

The lens is sharp as hell on the D800 and is a nice weight as well, if a little long. It's build quality is solid, although a bit beneath the mighty 14-24. The VR has been handy for some handheld stuff and the zoom range is actually very useful on FX.

I wouldnt recommend this at all for DX cameras as the zoom range doesnt make all that much sense, but for FX shooters who want to use regular 77mm filters on their wide angle, this is the lens for you.

My only slight gripe would be the frankly heinous distortion at its widest settings. However as long as you have Lightroom or PS, the distortion is a one click process to correct.

Thanks Nikon!
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