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Thread: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

  1. #1

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    Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Does anyone here have this lens and if so what do you think of it.

    I'm looking for a nice sharp general purpose prime lens with macro capabilities for flower close ups. It will be used on a Nikon D3000. The 105mm VR Micro Nikon is the one I'm considering, but I'm open to other suggestions also.

    Wendy

  2. #2
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Hi Wendy,

    Quote Originally Posted by ScoutR View Post
    Does anyone here have this lens and if so what do you think of it.
    Yes, me - but I think you knew that and just didn't want to put me on the spot by asking why you've not seen any pictures yet

    TBH, I am still undecided about how sharp it is, perhaps I held unreasonable expectations.

    Let's say the 70-300mm was a pleasant surprise which took the edge off the 105/2.8 VR Macro, but I'm still getting the hang of AF modes, etc.

    Another lesson learned, don't buy two lenses at the same time ....

    I have yet to PP any image into a final picture, but it has been on the camera for a week now (only came off this morning) and I have lots to sort through. My apologies for the delay. I'll try to get something up in a thread before the weekend, I have the day off tomnorrow, so maybe then, but the forecast is good, so I may be out shooting instead.

    Cheers,

  3. #3

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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Thanks Dave, you were right, I was hoping you would reply. I'm sorry that you are not too happy so far. This is not an inexpensive lens, and the reviews I've read have all been good, I would expect alot too.

    No rush on my account, but I do look forward to hearing your thoughts when you have had more time to work with it. I thought this one sounded like the be all to end all. (without spending multiple thousands CDN$)

    Wendy

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    shreds's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Hi,

    Having a range of Nikon Pro lenses, I have to say that the Nikon 105mm VR micro is by far and away my outright favourite.

    It's a great portrait lens, obviously a fab macro, and is so pin sharp I am surprised that Dave needs to question it.

    I am comparing it against my stable of f2.8 70-200, f2.8 24-70, f2.8 14-24, f1.4 50mm etc which are brilliant lenses in their own right, but the results always shine from this particular lens.

    Ok I am using it on a D3, which may have a better 'sweet spot' for this lens, but I struggle to think of any negatives, other than it's size and weight on a D3000 and the lack of zoom capability. But generally good primes can outshine zooms in many cases as they need to compromise less.

    I think it is now available as a VRII, although all my observations are based on the VR which I have used for a few years now.

  5. #5
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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    I looked at this lens and the Sigma 150 macro (also f2.8). After playing with both in the camera store for about an hour I felt the Sigma had a slight edge, mainly due to the longer focal length. The Sigma also comes with a tripod collar which I find very useful. If you use the lens mostly for macro work the VR (only on the Nikkor) won't be too useful. However, you probably won't be disappointed with either one.

  6. #6
    Mike in UK's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    The 105mm F2.8 Micro VRII is probably my favourite lens.
    Razor sharp with beautiful bokeh.
    I use mine for mainly macro work but it's such a good lens, it often stays on the D300S.
    Definitely worth it!
    There are a few examples on my Flickr page.

  7. #7
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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Quote Originally Posted by benm View Post
    I looked at this lens and the Sigma 150 macro (also f2.8). After playing with both in the camera store for about an hour I felt the Sigma had a slight edge, mainly due to the longer focal length. The Sigma also comes with a tripod collar which I find very useful. If you use the lens mostly for macro work the VR (only on the Nikkor) won't be too useful. However, you probably won't be disappointed with either one.
    A macro lens is my next purchase and I'm just about sold on the Sigma 150mm. I've heard nothing but praise for the Sigma and I'm ecstatic over my last purchase which was the Sigma 50mm f/1.4. Nice to hear more praise for this Sigma Macro. I'm fairly certain there is a member here using Sigma's 105mm macro as well. Maybe he'll share his opinion here too.

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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Thanks shreds, I want to have 1 lens that is my goto lens when I find something where I really want the best quality possible. I'd also like it to be a macro lens. I'm not worried about zoom. I have an 18-200 for general shots.

    I'm was hoping this would be the one, but bottom line is that I will have to try it out. I'm pretty sure I will be able to rent it or try it out at one of the local camera stores.

    Thanks again
    Wendy

  9. #9

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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike in UK View Post
    The 105mm F2.8 Micro VRII is probably my favourite lens.
    Razor sharp with beautiful bokeh.
    I use mine for mainly macro work but it's such a good lens, it often stays on the D300S.
    Definitely worth it!
    There are a few examples on my Flickr page.
    Hi Mike, thanks for the feedback. Would you mind posting a link to your Flickr page. I'd like to have a look at some shots from this lens. I know most people could probably find you on flicker without the link, but i probably can't.

    Thanks again
    Wendy

  10. #10
    Mike in UK's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Hi,
    You should find them on-
    www.flickr.com/photos/mikegroom
    Let me know what you think!

  11. #11

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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike in UK View Post
    Hi,
    You should find them on-
    www.flickr.com/photos/mikegroom
    Let me know what you think!
    Hi Mike, I had a look and found as many as I could. I was beginning to be able to tell as I went through the sets which one was taken with the 105. I really like "Hanging on" I'm sure I've seen that one before. Did you post it here by any chance? The other insects look great too, but the shot that really grabbed my attention was "Kiss of the Rose" Beautiful!!! Detail, DOF and backgrounds look great. I will certainly have to try this lens out to see if with me behind the camera the results are any better than with the lens I have now.

    So now I am wondering if these were taken handheld or do you use a tripod?

    I'll be looking forward to seeing more in the future. I hope you and Dave H. (and anyone else with this lens) try out some more flowers though.

    Thanks
    Wendy

  12. #12
    Mike in UK's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Hi Wendy,
    'Holding On' was in a recent competition within a Flickr group, (Only the best of Nature), although I didn't win! 'Kiss from a Rose' was taken handheld, but using the built in flash. Most of the other macros were taken with natural light including 'No Pain no Gain' and 'Kiwi vs Apple' which I took handheld in front of the kitchen window. 'Heart of Glass' was taken on a small tripod as it was about a 30s exposure.
    The one thing to watch on this lens is the relatively shallow DOF, which I notice when using natural light and hence quite large apertures.
    Will try to remember to make a macro set on Flickr, so they can all sit together!
    Mike.

  13. #13

    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Humphries View Post

    TBH, I am still undecided about how sharp it is, perhaps I held unreasonable expectations.
    Bearing in mind how much I like using my Canon macro gear I was desperate to try the new Nikon 105mm VR when it came out but was dissapointed with it on a tripod and the VR was a waste of time for macro (it only works on distant subjects, or at least the Nikon VR system does as they didn't bother enhancing it for macro work).

    Here's what I posted on another forum at the time:

    Canon 100mm f/2.8 USM macro, 1:2 @ f/9 on 40D - 100% crop, unsharpened:
    Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Nikkor 105mm f/2.8 VR micro, 1:2 @ f/9 on D80 - 100% crop, unsharpened
    Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    The pics were processed by different raw convertors as I don't think DPP will open files from a D80! The subject is a silk tie photographed at half lifesize - focus achieved carefully using a focus rail and tripod.

    No real point to this other than I wanted to try the Nikon lens. Draw your own concusions

  14. #14
    Peter Ryan's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Not wanting to confuse the debate but if you are considering a longer focal length lens like the Sigma 150mm then have a look at the Tamron 180mm. I have this macro lens and would not swap it for anything. Brilliant bokeh. The only thing is it is a bit heavier and you generally need a tripod for macro work.

    Nikon 105mm VR Micro

  15. #15
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    One from Saturday, as seen in PAD:

    Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Nikon D5000 + Nikon 105mm VR2 Macro: 1/125s, f/11 at iso800, handheld, no flash (700 x 521)
    Link to larger version; 1,411px 1,050 px


    Peter,

    I do agree that sometimes, 'longer' would be nice though (and so also, on occasion, would 'shorter').

    As a case in point, this, shot with the non-macro 70-300mm VR at 300mm is pretty good, but I was on the minimum focus distance of about 5 feet. I considered swapping to the 105mm, but to get the same image size on sensor would require me to get almost 3 times closer, which I really didn't think s/he would tolerate.

    Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Nikon D5000 + Nikon 70-300mm VR at 300mm: 1/2000s f/8 at iso400
    Link to see bigger: 1,274px 1,050 px

    I don't regret, for just a shade over 1000, buying both lenses - if there had been a Nikon AF-S with VR longer than 105mm I might have gone that way, but there isn't and previous bad experience with AF has made me very wary of 3rd party lenses (but admittedly that wasn't Tamron).
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 6th July 2010 at 01:03 AM. Reason: add more

  16. #16
    Peter Ryan's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon 105mm VR Micro

    Hi Dave,
    A student asked me the other day about macro lenses and I suggested that in hindsight the 180mm Tamron was too big and that the 105 mm was probably more versatile but I still would not give it awway for quids. I also have an older version of 70-300mm ED lens (no VR) and often use it for close up work. I gives me an entirely different background. I like to swith between both for close up work.

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