- DX Lenses exclusively designed for Nikon digital SLRs with the DX-size sensor; equivalent focal length in 35mm terms is 27-157mm
- VR (Vibration Reduction) minimizes camera-movement image blur, enabling handheld shooting ~3 stops slower
- Extra-low Dispersion (ED) glass element and aspherical lens element
- Built-in A/M switch enables instant exchange between AF & manual focus
- Silent Wave Motor for ultra-fast, ultra-quiet AF
- Non-rotating front element eases use of polarizing filters
- Rounded 7-blade aperture diaphragm renders pleasing out-of-focus highlights
Nikon’s AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens is a welcome addition to the Nikon DX-format DSLR systems, and an ideal counterpart to the D90 DSLR. This versatile optic offers much of the benefits of the enormously-popular 18-200mm VR lens but in a lighter, smaller body that takes a smaller filter as well.
The AF-S Silent Wave Motor in the 18-105mm VR yields speedy, silent, on-the-money AF performance with fulltime manual focus override. In particular, the AF-S motor keeps up with skittish, erratic subjects that overwhelm normal camera-driven-motor AF systems. You’ll get more ‘keeper’ images of those fast-moving animals, athletes, children, vehicles and the like.
Along with the SWM (Silent Wave Motor), the 18-105 benefits from the VR Image Stabilizer built in to the lens, which will give you the ability to handhold the camera at shutter speeds up to three stops slower than would otherwise normally be possible. Always a benefit to a handheld pic, this is of particular usefulness whenever you’re photographing slow-moving subjects in low light. The benefit of in-lens stabilization is seen in the viewfinder, making composing and capturing the image easier as well.
- 18mm is weak. Wide open you’ve got vignetting, softish corners, and lots of barrel distortion.
- Feature stripped. No VR II, no Active VR mode, no real autofocus override, plastic mount.
- Value. With few exceptions, a strong performer for a good price.
- Right size. Balances very nicely on the DX bodies.
The Nikkor AF-S DX 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6 G ED VR offers a nice package of a comfortable focal range, optical stabilization and very high resolution figures. On the downside there are rather pronounced distortion and CAs. The build quality is Ok but not really something to rave about either. Given the very moderate price tag it’s certainly an attractive offer if you can live with or work around its shortcomings. It’s quite interesting to see that Nikon is able to offer very attractive “long range” kit zoom lenses. None of the other manufacturers does really come close in this respect and it’s certainly giving Nikon a competitive edge in the important budget segment of the market.
A very decent performer for a kit lens, especially if you consider its fairly large zoom ratio (it’s an almost 6x zoom after all). Centre sharpness is impressive at all focal lengths, wide open or stopped down a notch, allowing you to utilise the resolution potential of any currently available Nikon DX