Highly Recommended awardIf you own (or are buying) a DX-format body and convenience is your number-one priority, but you want it with the least compromise in quality and features, the Nikkor DX 18-200mm VR II should be top of your list. Highly Recommended. Good points: Very flexible and convenient 11.1x zoom range; optical stabilisation with four stops of compensation; quiet autofocusing on all Nikon bodies; decent build quality and zoom-lock switch. Bad points: The most expensive super-zoom for cropped bodies; suffers from zoom creep between 28 and 135mm; suffers from zoom-shrinkage at close range; beaten on price and quality by twin lens solutions.

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The following images were taken with a Nikkor DX 18-200mm VR II lens mounted on a Nikon D90 body, running firmware versions A 1.00 and B 1.00.

The D90 was set to RAW and the files processed in Nikon’s Capture NX 2.2.3 with lens corrections disabled and the default sharpness of 3. In terms of other settings, the D90 was set to Auto White Balance and the default Standard Picture Control, Normal High ISO NR and Active D-Lighting set to the default Auto. All shots here were handheld.

The individual exposure mode, shutter speeds, aperture and ISO are listed for each image.

The crops are taken from the original files, reproduced at 100% and saved in Adobe Photoshop CS4 as JPEGs with the Very High quality preset, while the resized images were made in Photoshop CS4 and saved with the default High quality preset. The three crops are typically taken from far left, central and far right portions of each image.

Note: you may wish to open a number of galleries for direct comparison of detail: Nikkor DX 16-85mm VR sample images, Nikkor DX 35mm f/1.8G sample images.

Landscape: Program, 1/400, f10, 200 ISO, 18-200mm at 26mm (39mm equiv)

Landscape: Program, 1/400, f10, 200 ISO, 18-200mm at 35mm (53mm equiv)

Landscape: Program, 1/320, f9, 200 ISO, 18-200mm at 18mm (27mm equiv)

Landscape: Program, 1/1000, f5.6, 200 ISO, 18-200mm at 200mm (300mm equiv)

Portrait: Ap Priority, 1/1000, f5.3, 200 ISO, 18-200mm at 95mm (143mm equiv)

Wildlife: Program, 1/1600, f5.6, 200 ISO, 18-200mm at 200mm (300mm equiv)

Macro: 10.6MB, Ap Priority, 1/40, f8, 200 ISO, 18-200mm at 200mm (300mm equiv)

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