Nikon 18-105mm vr review


Nikon 18-105mm Vr review

Nikon 18-105mm vr review

Official name: Nikkor Af-S DX 18-105mm f3.5-5,6G IF-ED VR

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Mount: plastic (this is what most people don’t like)
Close focus distance: 45 cm
Distance scale: No
Focal length: 18-105mm
Aperture: 3.5-5.6
Weight: 420g
Filter size: 67mm
Autofocus: Nikkor silent wave


The Nikkor 18-105m Vr is a kit zoom for Nikon Dx cameras. What are the usual characteristics of the kit lenses? Cheap price, usually not very good built quality, reduced contrast and perhaps sharpness some possible optical flaws like purple fringing or vignetting.

The 18-105 compare to a very good lens

What is the difference between this and a very good lens? I think especially better contrast, perhaps a little better sharpness and better build quality.If we want the same range we should pay several times more, for a little better quality. Post processing is cheaper according to my opinion. Even for serious shooters this lens is perhaps good enough as a “travel” lens.

Evaluation of the 18 105

Let say straightly: this lens is not bad for the price if you buy used on the market. The range is very good: you can shoot almost anything, except perhaps wildlife or very distant objects. If you want the perfect quality, or wants to use for professional purposes this is not that lens, but be prepared to pay several times more if you want the ultimate quality. If you don’t want to keep the range, the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 I think is a much better lens especially at the wide end. The long end of the 18-105 is surprisingly good even wide open (f5.6). I was surprised how sharp it is. See below the picture, the building was 300m away. No sharpening as it comes out of the camera.

105mm f5.6 iso 1250

105mm f5.6 iso 1250

On paper it is the opposite the wide end has better resolution, than at the long end. In usage for me was harder to make “keeper” images at the wide end.
The 3,5-5,6 brightness not the best but with a good Dsrl like the 5200d you can use it in lots of situations. I don’t know how it behaves mounted on other Nikons I only used on the 5200d. On screen size the pictures are great, in 100% shows that the lens not up to the newest 24 Mp sensor‘s capabilities.

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On the Nikon D5200 camera 39/9 autofocus system, the autofocus is much better than I expected. The speed of the autofocus is very good, very fast and the accuracy is very good as well.


16 85 Vr for 3X the price, 35-1.8, 18-55 Vr, 18-200 VR, Tamron 17 50, Sigma 17 70 etc.

Compare to the 16-85:

The optical difference is not so huge as the price difference, but the 16-85 is better especially at the wide end. Little wider and sharper, especially at the corners and mid-frame. At the long end perhaps the 18-105 little better. Both lens quite good wide open.

Compare to the Tamron 17-50 (non-Vc):

At the wide end the Tamron is better, has more contrast and sharpness. The Tamron is much brighter. The autofocus of the Nikon is much better, faster and quiter. The build quality of the two lenses are not much different.

Compare to the Nikon 17-55

The Nikon 17-55 is much brighter. The range of the 18-105 is better and has a stabilizer. The 17-55 is much heavier and better build. Optically at the wide end the 17-55 is better and much more expensive.

Compare to the Nikon 18-55 Vr

For wide angle shots the Nikon 18-55 vr is sharper in the corners. For telephoto the 18-105mm is much better.

If we see the alternatives either we pay much more, or sacrifice the range for a wished better quality. If we think about the one lens solution obviously this lens lot to offer: stabilisation, good range, image sharpness even at the long end. If we want the best image quality we need more lenses this is a big drawback, either we change lenses all the time or bring two camera bodies.


Sharpness, consistent results, versatility, good range, light weight, nice colours with the 5200d, quick autofocus, moderate price, stabilization


plastic mount, wide end not the best(but not bad at all) compare to the Tamron 17 50, build quality not the best no distance scale, plastic mount, distortion at wide end, brightness 3.5-5.6

Bottom line / verdict

The Nikon 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6 is a nice good value beginner lens, with a wide focal length range. For those who search for ultimate quality must look elsewhere. The focal length range and the quality is quite good for this price.

 Posted by at 10:39 am