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Old May 17, 2006, 9:12 PM   #1
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I just ordered a used Nikon 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6 D-AF IF LENS (not sold from most stores anymore) from bhphoto.com, will arrive Friday or Saturday. I though that this lens is the same lens as the newer Nikon 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF Zoom-Nikkor, I just realized that after placing my order. I researched at the differences of the two lens to determine ifI should just return the used type D ( without ED) that I bought and get the type G (with ED) for about $60 to $70 dollars more. The type G lens also has 1.5 ft minimum focus range while the type D has 2.8 ft.

I also found out that the type G lens has 12 elements and 11 groups versus the older type D with 16 elements and 13 groups, but what do these elements and groups mean?

I looked at some sample photos at pbase.com for both lenses and all looks good for me.. I'm rarely take macro photos so the minimum focal range doesn't concern me, im more concerned about the optical quality or how sharp or clear the photos the lens produce. Any help would be appreciated....
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Old May 17, 2006, 9:22 PM   #2
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I doubt that you'll notice a difference in quality. The "g" lens is the newer of the two. G lenses are typically a bit lighter and smaller. The other lens is probably a bit heavier, but will be optically similiar. The newer lens may have better coatings to deal with CA, but I wouldn't fret too much over getting a slightly older lens.
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Old May 17, 2006, 9:24 PM   #3
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thanks for the reply. Any ideas what the groups/elements numbers mean?
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Old May 17, 2006, 11:18 PM   #4
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"Elements" is the total number of glass elements.
"Group" is a number of glasses that are next to each other.

For example, the lens below has 6 elements in 3 groups:





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Old May 18, 2006, 11:15 AM   #5
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thanks for that info rey, but does more elements give you better quality in photos? or is it the other way around. I'm kind of worried that these newer lenses which is smaller and lighter would give me lower quality photos.. kinda like most smaller point and shoot digital camera with poor performance compared to slightly bigger ones.

So what would you recomment.. the Nikon 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6 D-AF or the Nikon 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF Zoom-Nikkor
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Old May 19, 2006, 7:39 AM   #6
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The number of elements is the number of pieces of glass used in the lens. Single uncemented elements or two or more elements cemented together are called a group. Thus a lens that has 8 elements in 7 groups has 8 pieces of glass with 2 cemented together. Each additional element the designer has at his/her disposal gives a few more degrees of freedom to design out an aberration. So one would expect a 6 element lens to be better than a 3 element lens. It is impossible to completely correct all aberrations though.Also, each surface also reflects a little light, causing flare. So too many elements is not good either.Some lens manufacturers tout the number of elements in their lens, but in reality it may or may not be a good thing. So by itself the number of elements is no guarantee of quality.

In this case, again I doubt that you'll notice a difference in image quality with these two lenses.
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