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Old Jun 15, 2011, 6:10 PM   #1
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Hi,

Am considering a D7000 but, prior to purchase, would like to know my full range of lens options. So I would like to know which non-Nikon lens brands you respect. Which do you consider top quality?

Thank you.
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Old Jul 9, 2011, 10:01 AM   #2
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Looks as though your question has been answered.
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Old Jul 9, 2011, 11:01 AM   #3
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You can't judge a lens by its brand. Every company makes some gems and some duds.
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Old Jul 11, 2011, 10:55 AM   #4
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I think a lot depends on your expectations. There are some who are convinced that name brand lenses are the only choice. I purchased a Sigma 18-200 mm without image stabilization. This is one of the lenses that many have commented is not a very good lens. I used it exclusively on my D40 a couple of years ago on a trip through Canada which ended in Skagway, Alaska. In my opinion the images were excellent. I have some wonderful photographs of that trip that others have commented on the high quality of my equipment. I would not hesitate to purchase another Sigma lens if I had the need for one.
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Old Jul 11, 2011, 11:36 AM   #5
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I have two Nikon lenses, two Tamron lenses, and a Tokina lens. I am happy with each of them. As TCav says, it depends on the lens -- and on what you are trying to achieve. My lenses are all optically superb by my lights, but they are all also consumer-grade construction. I buy the glass that I can afford that meets my performance needs, and -- whether it has a Nikon label or a 3rd party label -- that may mean that the build quality is adequate but not top-notch.
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Old Jul 11, 2011, 12:27 PM   #6
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Lets not forget that Nikon started out as a third party lens maker.
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Old Jul 11, 2011, 12:42 PM   #7
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The thread was started a month ago and the OP only has one post so
he may not be coming back - but just in case...

What I consider two good lens review sites...

Lenstip.com
http://lenstip.com/lenses_reviews.html

Photozone
http://www.photozone.de/all-tests

Lenstip is my favorite but Photozone is very good as well... Study the reviews for
the lens(s) you are interested in and ask/read about user experience in forums
like this one (and others) and then make up your own mind... Nikon Cafe forum
(google it) has a section just on lenses where you can also find a lot of first hand
knowledge from users...

You can also gain a lot of insight from Lensrentals.com...
http://www.lensrentals.com/for-nikon

Hope something here helps, drako, if you should ever return...
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Old Jul 11, 2011, 1:49 PM   #8
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http://www.SLRGear.com is also good. http://www.DxOMark.com is very good but the number of lenses they've tested isn't very large.
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Old Jul 11, 2011, 1:53 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wizzard0003 View Post
The thread was started a month ago and the OP only has one post so
he may not be coming back - but just in case...

What I consider two good lens review sites...

Lenstip.com
http://lenstip.com/lenses_reviews.html

Photozone
http://www.photozone.de/all-tests

Lenstip is my favorite but Photozone is very good as well...
I agree that these are excellent sites. Let me just add a few more that have some real merit to them.

My first stop when looking for lenses is DPAnswers' Lens Finder:
http://dpanswers.com/roztr/lens_finder.php
Although this does have some sketchy reviews, my main interest is in finding a list of lenses that meet my requirements (you can specify a number of parameters in the search). The search list includes recent prices for each lens from B&H, which further allows me to prune my starting list. The search is quite comprehensive, so you end up getting a pretty good sense of what is available to choose from. It's not a "collector's" list, so if you like old and discontinued glass it won't help you search. But it is a very good place to start a search for new glass.

SLR Gear is my personal favorite lens review site:
http://www.slrgear.com/reviews/index.php
This site has a lot of reviews, so there's a good chance that it will have a review of the lens you're considering. The reviews are a lot more succinct than either Photozone or the wonderfully verbose Lens Tip reviews (which I agree are a delight to read), but they present their information in a manner that I find quite accessible. Their "blur units" interactive charts on resolution, for example, give me quite a clear sense of the particular lens that they evaluated (MTF seems more abstract to me. I know that many folks find it the right value, and it does provide a useful summary of center/edge sharpness, but I just find the SLR Gear graph more intuitive.) The same is true for their CA graphs. I can tell at a glance what I want to know from them. The bar graphs have precisely the same info, they just don't leap out at me in the same way. I know these things are quite individual, so YMMV. I also like the comparison section of SLRGear reviews, that suggests competitive lenses and their strengths and weaknesses relative to the one you are viewing.

The photos on SLR Gear are not particularly helpful to me, but for that I like Motley Pixel:
http://www.motleypixel.com/reviews/
This site has photos for a given lens by a single photographer. The thing that appeals to me on this site over the other big collection of photos by lens, Pixel Peeper (http://www.pixel-peeper.com/) is that the photos seem more crafted to the purpose of helping me evaluate the lens. And, by being from a single photographer for a given lens, allow me to get a sense of a portfolio using the lens instead of just a collection of individual photos.

Finally, I should mention DXO Mark:
http://www.dxomark.com//index.php
The two good things about DXOMark to my mind are that it evaluates the given lens using your particular camera and it allows you to compare their measurements directly against other lenses you are considering. The bad news for me is that I find their graphs very hard to read and some of their measurements ("DXOMark Score," for example) nothing short of inscrutable. FWIW
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Old Jul 11, 2011, 9:44 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tclune View Post

Finally, I should mention DXO Mark:
http://www.dxomark.com//index.php
The two good things about DXOMark to my mind are that it evaluates the given lens using your particular camera and it allows you to compare their measurements directly against other lenses you are considering. The bad news for me is that I find their graphs very hard to read and some of their measurements ("DXOMark Score," for example) nothing short of inscrutable. FWIW
Yes, I like being able to compare lenses w/camera side-by-side at DXO but
agree that the graphs and scoring are terrible...

All the suggestions from you and TCav are very good... I just wanted to get
drako started somewhere that's easy to understand and follow for the beginer
and the two I mentioned were Godsends for me when I started researching
lenses...

Good suggestions everyone...!
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