LensTip.com

Lens review

Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR

31 January 2011
Arkadiusz Olech

11. Summary

Pros:
  • efficient image stabilization,
  • very good image quality in the frame centre for the whole range of focal lengths,
  • not bothersome distortion on the DX sensor,
  • low astigmatism,
  • negligible vignetting on the DX sensor and acceptable vignetting on full frame,
  • good work against bright light,
  • silent, quite quick and efficient autofocus.

Cons:

  • very high chromatic aberration near the maximum relative aperture,
  • low quality of image on the edge of full frame near the maximum relative aperture,
  • significant distortion on full frame,
  • noticeable coma.

The Nikkor AF-S 24–120 mm f/4G ED VR, despite several flaws, is a well-done lens for sure. I would sing the praises of it for several paragraphs if only the price was lower. Currently it costs about 1140 $ and it is really a significant amount of money. First and foremost it is much more expensive than its slower predecessor which can be still bought for the sum three times lower. I understand that the Nikkor AF-S 24–120 mm f/4G ED VR is supposed to compete with (or supersede) the well-done Canon 24-105 mm f/4.0L IS USM. Optically both lenses are very much alike. The problem is that the Canon, being noticeably cheaper, features also a superior build quality. It is, after all, an L series device produced in Japan. From the mechanical point of view the Thailand-produced Nikkor looks and behaves like a lens with a 300 – 600 $ price tag. A narrow manual focus ring with slacks or the inner tube with plastic elements in the 1140 price segment are simply inappropriate.


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Perhaps the steep price of the tested Nikkor stems from the fact that we deal with a novelty here. If it is true I would recommend postponing the purchase. There are really no reasons whatsoever why you should spend on this lens more than on the Canon 24–105 mm f/4.0L IS USM, which nowadays can be bought for a bit over 1000 $.

Sample shots

Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 120 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/1250 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.84 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 85 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/1250 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.58 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 50 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/1600 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 8.43 MB
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 32 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/1250 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.6 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 24 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/1250 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.63 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 24 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/1250 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.74 MB
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 46 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/1600 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 8.21 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 120 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/1000 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.25 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 82 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/1250 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 6.56 MB
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 50 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/500 s, ISO 400
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 6.64 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 120 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/1600 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.12 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 120 mm, f/8.0, exp. 1/500 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.11 MB
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 85 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/2000 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 6.44 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 85 mm, f/8.0, exp. 1/640 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 6.71 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 50 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/1600 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.31 MB
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 24 mm, f/8.0, exp. 1/640 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.34 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 35 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/1000 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.47 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 120 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/200 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 6.16 MB
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 50 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/200 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 6.21 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 120 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/640 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 6.41 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 70 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/800 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 6.44 MB
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Nikon Nikkor AF-S 24-120 mm f/4G ED VR - Summary
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 85 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/800 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 5.45 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 65 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/640 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 7.02 MB
Camera: Nikon D3x
Parameters: 24 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/6 s, ISO 800
File: JPEG, 6048×4032 pix, 9.59 MB



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