Nikkor AF-S VR 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G IF-ED

Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 VR shortest focal length geometry comparison

Nikkor 70-300mm geometry at 70mm f8
70-300mm at 70mm f8
Distortion: 0.31% barrel

To measure and compare the Nikkor DX 70-300mm VR’s geometric distortion we photographed a test chart consisting of a grid pattern, using it and a number of rival lenses.The lenses were tested at their widest focal lengths with an aperture of f8 in Aperture Priority mode.

The images were analysed with Imatest using 5th Order line calculation and the full areas presented here at a reduced resolution.

The image left was taken with the Nikkor 70-300mm VR at 70mm f8. Barrel distortion was measured at 0.31% which is actually a little worse than the DX 55-200mm VR when it’s zoomed-out to a shorter focal length of 55mm. That said, you wouldn’t notice much difference between them in real-life. Note the DX 18-135mm and DX 18-200mm show greater distortion when zoomed-out due to their much wider focal lengths. Their results are included here as an overall view. The comparisons below when all four lenses are zoomed-in is more relevant.

To measure and compare the Nikkor DX 70-300mm VR’s geometric distortion we photographed a test chart consisting of a grid pattern, using it and a number of rival lenses.

The lenses were tested at their widest focal lengths with an aperture of f8 in Aperture Priority mode.

The images were analysed with Imatest using 5th Order line calculation and the full areas presented here at a reduced resolution.

The image left was taken with the Nikkor 70-300mm VR at 70mm f8. Barrel distortion was measured at 0.31% which is actually a little worse than the DX 55-200mm VR when it’s zoomed-out to a shorter focal length of 55mm. That said, you wouldn’t notice much difference between them in real-life. Note the DX 18-135mm and DX 18-200mm show greater distortion when zoomed-out due to their much wider focal lengths. Their results are included here as an overall view. The comparisons below when all four lenses are zoomed-in is more relevant.

Nikkor DX 55-200mm f/4-5.6 VR
Nikkor DX 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6
Nikkor DX 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 VR
Nikkor DX 55-200mm geometry at 55mm f8
Nikkor DX 18-135mm geometry at 18mm f8
Nikkor DX 18-200mm at 18mm f8
DX 55-200mm at 55mm f8
Distortion: 0.20% barrel
DX 18-135mm at 18mm f8
Distortion: 5.48% barrel
DX 18-200mm at 18mm f8
Distortion: 5.26% barrel

Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 VR longest focal length geometry comparison

Nikkor 70-300mm geometry at 300mm f8
70-300mm at 300mm f8
Distortion: 0.72% pincushion

The lenses were tested at their longest focal lengths with an aperture of f8 in Aperture Priority mode.To measure and compare the Nikkor 70-300mm VR’s geometric distortion we photographed a test chart consisting of a grid pattern, using it and a number of rival lenses.

The images were analysed with Imatest using 5th Order line calculation and the full areas presented here at a reduced resolution.

The image above was taken with the Nikkor 70-300mm VR at 300mm f8. Pincushion distortion was measured at 0.72% which is measurably the best result out of all four lenses presented here, even when operating at a longer focal length of 300mm. Now let’s finally compare the vignetting and light fall-off of each lens.

Nikkor DX 55-200mm f/4-5.6 VR
Nikkor DX 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6
Nikkor DX 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 VR
Nikkor DX 55-200mm geometry at 200mm f8
Nikkor DX 18-135mm geometry at 135mm f8
Nikkor DX 18-200mm geometry at 200mm f8
DX 55-200mm at 200mm f8
Distortion: 1.27% pincushion
DX 18-135mm at 135mm f8
Distortion: 1.78% pincushion
DX 18-200mm at 200mm f8
Distortion: 1.22% pincushion
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