Nikon 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF DX AF-S Nikkor

Lens Reviews / Nikon Lenses i Lab tested
18-70mm $266
average price
image of Nikon 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF DX AF-S Nikkor

Lab Test Results

  • Blur
  • Chromatic Aberration
  • Vignetting
  • Geometric Distortion

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Buy the Nikon 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF DX AF-S Nikkor

(From Nikon lens literature) Compact 3.8x zoom covers portrait to wide view. Three Nikon ED glass elements, plus aspheric element for low distortion and minimized chromatic aberration. Compact and light weight, this high-power wide-angle zoom lens capitalizes on the Silent Wave focusing system for super quiet operation

(Our own comments) This is the lens that shipped in the Nikon D70 camera kit (and currently ships with the D70S), and among Nikon's three mid-range zooms, this one hits the sweet spot in terms of price, quality, and weight. Compared to the high priced constant aperture 17-55 and the low priced 18-55, the 18-70 offers a 3.8x zoom, reasonable weight, and excellent image characteristics. A very handy lens to own, and a great bargain when bought as part of a D70/D70S bundle.

Test Notes

Back when we first tested the Nikon D70 at Imaging Resource, we were impressed by the quality of the 18-70mm lens that came bundled with it in retail packages. It wasn't until we looked at the results from DxO Analyzer though, that we realized just how good it actually is.

Shot wide open, the 18-70mm does very well across its full focal length range, with even its weakest performance (at 18mm) being better than average. Sharpness is also surprisingly uniform across the entire frame. This lens also has an unusually broad "sweet spot," delivering excellent sharpness across the full focal length range when stopped down one to two f-stops from the maximum aperture at each focal length. As usual, its images get softer when you stop down all the way to the minimum aperture (f/22-f/25, depending on focal length), but even there the 18-70 does quite well, the average blur index rising only to 3, much better than average for such small apertures.

Chromatic aberration is also unusually low across most of this lens' range, with worst-case values less than 0.03% across most of the focal length range, rising only at the maximum telephoto end of its range.

It's in the areas of vignetting and distortion that the 18-70 shows its greatest weakness (slight though that is), making it an excellent candidate for image correction with DxO Optics Pro. At maximum wide angle, vignetting hits a high of slightly more than one EV wide open, but drops to 1/2 EV at apertures of f/5.6 and smaller. At all other focal lengths we tested though, there was less than 1/4 EV of light falloff at all apertures, excellent uniformity by any measure. Geometric distortion is on the high side at 18mm, where we found a bit over 1% barrel distortion. This drops to nearly zero at 31mm though, and only hits 0.2% pincushion distortion as you move to full telephoto.

Bottom line, the Nikkor 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G DX is a very high-quality optic, well worth the price, and is a real bargain when acquired as part of a D70/D70S bundle.

Nikon 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF DX AF-S Nikkor

Nikon 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF DX AF-S Nikkor User Reviews

8.3/10 average of 77 review(s) Build Quality 8.0/10 Image Quality 8.3/10
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by Posersphotography (1 reviews)
    Good all round work horse lens. Well built and optically good with useful range
    Maybe lack of VR but for a 18-70mm range you don't really need it.

    I bought a Nikon D70 when it first came out in 2004, this was the "kit" lens that was supplied with it, having been a full time working professional photographer until I retired 5 years ago, the 18-70mm was my lens of choice for the majority of my jobs, it has seen me through literally thousands of weddings and portrait sessions as well as social events etc and is still working perfectly, any problems that have been mentioned by other reviewers, such as vignetting and barrel distortion at the wide end, are not that serious and can easily be corrected in Photoshop or DxO. The build for such a cheap lens is very good, mine has been chucked in and out of the car boot, used in the pouring rain and generally not looked after as well as it maybe should have been, but even after all of these years it still works as well as it did they day I bought it, it has outlived many Nikon cameras. I have a couple of Nikon 18-55mm VR lenses as well as a couple of 18-200mm VRs, and although obviously the 18-200mm lenses are very useful because of the huge zoom range, optical quality of the 18-70mm is superior in my opinion than either of the above.

    reviewed January 19th, 2022
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by beenthere (3 reviews)
    Rugged, decent IQ, nice focal range.
    No VR. Showing its age. Not up to anything beyond 14mp.

    Got this as kit lens with my D-70. Still use it with D7200 with fairly good results. Fell down stairs at Yosemite at night and landed on lens (cap on) and broke portions of front thread off, still works as new. Rugged.

    reviewed October 23rd, 2016 (purchased for $150)
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by rrwilliams64 (9 reviews)
    well built for the price, faster than 16-85 and 18-105, sharp
    lacks VR, distortion, light fall off

    Still one of Nikon's best kit lenses and an overlooked offering for those seeking a walkaround lens. Can be found at very reasonable prices on second hand market. Has a metal mount, focuses silently, it's a faster piece of glass than some other choices folks turn to in the Nikon stable. You could do a lot worse as an all purpose walk around zoom...

    reviewed October 7th, 2013 (purchased for $55)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by Tord (30 reviews)
    Excellent compliment to my Nikon V1, surprisingly sharp!
    Bit big for my V1!

    Bought this as a compliment to my Nikon V1, and together with the TF1 adapter it costed about as much as the 30-110 would have. But used Nikon lenses are easy to find, at very friendly prices!

    Focuses fairly sharpish on the V1 and is a pleasure to use!

    reviewed March 13th, 2012 (purchased for $175)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by Tony305 (2 reviews)
    Very handy walk-around lens

    Bought used 2 month ago.
    Very happy with the size and performance

    reviewed October 29th, 2010 (purchased for $200)
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by mortuus (1 reviews)
    Fast, accurate, great flexibility, weather sealed which is quite good
    zoom ring is a bit stiff, lack of vr perhaps

    Recently picked up this from someone who had this as a lens for D80 almost 4 years, hard to believe such a lens can still look almost as if new says alot. I figured after 1.5 years shooting with the kit lens 18-55 for my D40 i wanted something that didnt feel so cheap and plastic so this was a bargain in second hand, lens feels very sturdy and is not by any means some cheap just look the street price even today its pricy. Did i mention its weather sealed around the gasket? name a dx lens in this price range that has that. And also the aperture is 1 stop better on 70mm 4.5 vs my kit lens which is 5.6 on 55 not that bad and u get 15mm extra.

    reviewed June 29th, 2010 (purchased for $140)
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by Philly (2 reviews)
    Flexible, easy to use, great everyday lens
    Vignetting, especially with filter

    It is a pretty good lens, and I've read some other reviews that corroborate mine: pretty good everyday lens. I especially like how it renders colors. But vignetting gets pretty bad, especially when using a polarisation filter in sunny conditions. It's as if the edges are somehow shaded, the difference is that big.

    reviewed May 18th, 2010 (purchased for $180)
  • 8 out of 10 points and not recommended by adrian snow (6 reviews)
    Quality/Price ratio, very practical zoom range, AF-S
    No VR or fast maximum aperature, Shallow 'sweet spot' ,

    Let me come out and say that I have owned two copies of this lens and wasn't really impressed by either.

    I rate this lens a solid 8 overall because it is not a bad lens by any means, but not really impressive either. For me, it is a great 'Jack-of-all-trades' lens. I've yet to find anything that it masters.

    For the price, I think it is a very good lens. With that said though, I would have a hard time recommending it over any of the Nikkor 18-55mm lenses. It looks nicer than any of the Nikkor 18-55mm lenses if that matters to you. It has nice fat glass and has 67mm front threads. It still doesn't really perform better.

    I have replaced this lens with a much better Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 DI lens. The Tamron sells for about $100-150 more used, but is worth every penny and more in my opinion.

    This Nikkor 18-70mm can be a little hard to focus at times, which is the only real negative thing I have to say about it.

    This lens is versatile, but if you are thinking about replacing your Nikkor 18-55mm with this lens, you are better off saving your money and buying a faster aperature lens like the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 or something with VR like the excellent Nikon 16-85mm VR.

    reviewed March 28th, 2010 (purchased for $190)
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by nikonfreak (4 reviews)
    Excellent quality, heavy lense
    not worty of the name "kitlense "it is too good for that

    this is a excellent lense , it is heavyli underrated by many, imho it is far far better than the average kit lense. the range is good, from 18-70mm optically perfect very little flaws, ed glass a decent range of f3.5-5.6. this lense still serves me great .

    reviewed March 14th, 2010 (purchased for $233)
  • 6 out of 10 points and not recommended by Focus (11 reviews)
    Nice solid built
    Too little for the price

    I thought it was quite good until I got the 18-135.
    Compared this one it's way too expensive for a lens that's less sharp and has only half the reach.

    reviewed January 15th, 2010
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by ZinMe (3 reviews)
    Very sharp in center, affordable, durable, good focal range (18-70)
    f3.5 is widest it can go, no VR

    I bought this lens to go with my D80 in 2007. It is very sharp in the center although on the borders when I shoot team pictures I don't get consistently good sharpness.

    Others have complained about vignetting, but I notice no significant vignetting.

    I dropped the lens once, breaking the filter but with no damage to the lens. It is very durable. The construction quality is excellent.

    The lens is light and easy to carry-- much more portable than the alternatives.

    Don't dismiss the value of hte long end at 70mm, this comes in handy and is a big advantage to the 18-50mm alternatives.

    My only significant complaint is that it is not a great lens in low light situations. It only opens to f3.5 and has no VR.

    reviewed January 4th, 2010 (purchased for $250)
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by Eager (7 reviews)
    small, cheap, mostly sharp
    variable aperture, occasionally hunts for a focus in low light

    I used this lens during my short trip in Romania. It managed very well for a lens in this price category. It's only weakness was in lowlight performance. It failed to focus properly in some difficult indoor situations.

    reviewed October 25th, 2009 (purchased for $250)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by Niel (12 reviews)
    Well sealed metal mount, sharp, cheap.
    Short zoom range.

    I bought mine cheap as the AF had died, stripped it (not for the faint hearted) cleaned wiper contacts AND flexi-circuit connections contacts, has worked fine since, and the potential loose screw 24mm jamming problem was dealt with whilst apart with loctite.
    It's very much a user lens, on my D1x or D50 depending on what I'm doing, though the D50 usually wears a Tamron 18-200 for walk-around use.
    Yes corner darkening can be an issue, thin filters are essential at 18mm!

    reviewed August 29th, 2009 (purchased for $45)
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by HighSierra (13 reviews)
    Relatively few optical flaws, good build for the price
    Not the sharpest Nikkor kit lens (see 18-135)

    This is a very solid lens with few weaknesses for the cost. It covers a very nice focal range, and is faster than the typical kit F/5.6 at the long end. Distortion is an issue at 18mm but not too bad through the rest of the range. It has average build quality, and feels solid enough for the price, and handles much better than say an 18-55.

    The question is whether to get this lens, or its' cousin the 18-135. The latter is sharper and covers a wider range, but the issues of vignetting, CA, and distortion are more apparent, and require greater post processing to correct. Also the 18-135 is built more cheaply, lacking a distance scale and having a plastic mount.

    For relevant uses, the 18-70 is a satisfying lens for the price. The relative lack of optical distortions make it more suitable for the JPEG shooter who wishes not to post process their images. If you think this lens works for you, it is certainly a value at current used prices, or in a kit.

    reviewed June 14th, 2008 (purchased for $200)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by f43tgv (16 reviews)
    Light, sharp and cheap

    This lens is a little gem. Period. There is the unfortunate stigma, quite wrong that as this can be a bundled kit lens that it is somehow inferior. Nonsense, this is a sharp little cookie at a bargain price.

    I have used the Nikkor 17-55 2.8 lens which weighs a ton, costs a fortune, and to be frank apart from the 2.8 aperture has little more to offer. I could see NO visible difference in A4 prints.

    Some discard this in favour of the 18-200VR, why? The 18-200 is SOFT beyond 135mm and costs a lot of money. Buy yourself the older 70-210 4/5.6 zoom which is far sharper than the 18-200, they are available for silly money, and have a great low cost two lens combo.

    Dont believe the hype, great pictures dont require the latest, most expensive glass!

    reviewed April 8th, 2008
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by wupeide (2 reviews)
    Price, sharpness, great range
    Tends to back focus slightly - even with good AF targets

    This lens is really great for the price. It only has two serious weaknesses. First, its not a 2.8 so its not great in low light (AF is a bit problematic) and second it back focuses a bit when you are in the mid range of the zoom.

    reviewed November 6th, 2007 (purchased for $310)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by davidabooth (2 reviews)
    Sharp; Good range; Low CA
    Not much for the price

    As a "standard" kit lens this is a gem. Optically it performs well across the range. Some slight distortion at the extremes - but less than you might expect. I use this regularly for "pro" shoots and it always delivers. Overall a great little lens.

    reviewed July 16th, 2007
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by jaymc (1 reviews)
    Good optical quality, lightweight, cheap
    Changing focal length a little rough

    Overall, great lens for the D70. Highly recommded.

    Found different wide open aperture readings than those sited in on this site (see Blur Index). I found that the aperture changes at:

    70----------------50-----35-----24--18 Focal length
    --------4.5------------- 4.2- 4- 3.8-3.5 Aperture

    f/4.5 was over half of the focal length!

    reviewed March 4th, 2007 (purchased for $250)
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by Artman57 (6 reviews)
    Good image quality overall
    for a kit lens...none

    When I bought my D200, I though of getting the body only, being that I have a 85mm1.8 Nikkor prime but afterwards just thought that for the price difference when bundled this kit lens could be a very good deal. And I was not mistaken. This is a very good - probaly the best - kit lens bundled with any camera brand. Great for overall walk around work, its very well constructed and assembled and image quality in the field is very very good, detailed, sharp. Handling is very sweet, very silent and fast. fastest aperture of 3.5 at 18 mm is good and probably a better lens that the 18-135mm.I am really happy with it.

    reviewed February 26th, 2007
  • 6 out of 10 points and recommended by Rickmail (1 reviews)
    Sharp, very low CA, light and small
    Huge amount of light falloff at 18mm wide open

    This lens performs great wide open at all zoom stops, except for a large amount of light falloff at 18mm when wide open. Stop it down to f/5.6 when at 18mm if you want to get rid of it.

    I upgraded from the 18-55 II kit lens. Sharpness at the corners on that lens was horrible but on the 18-70 it's great.

    Chromatic aberration really bothered me on cheap lenses and this one has none of that! Contrast is also great with very little flare.

    I compared this one to the 18-135 AF-S and decided on this one for the slightly faster aperture and the reviews I'd read.

    reviewed February 3rd, 2007 (purchased for $453)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by Masselink (6 reviews)
    Fast;Small;Cheap;Good Quality
    f3.5 is not enough, you still need a good 50 mm lens

    I sold this lens to my brother together with my D70 Body. I really like the lens and bought a new one together with a D80 body.

    I really prefer this one above the 18-135mm lens because it has lower stops at 70mm

    I really believe this is the best lens (with a great range) for only $350 in the market.

    reviewed January 15th, 2007 (purchased for $355)
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by Odradek (6 reviews)

    I like to think of this lens as the semi-pro f/4 L - Canon like - standard zoom lens for Nikon DX format. It's that good...
    And there really isn't any other lens to fill this gap: you have either the 18-55DX f/3.5-5.6 in the lower DX end, or the much more expensive and much heavier 17-55DX f/2.8 in the uper DX end.
    If you think you need this lens, and didn't get it as a kit lens when you first bought your DSLR, just get it now and don't worry about it for some years.

    As for it's strengths and weaknesses I think that's pretty much covered on the other reviewers... reviews!

    reviewed January 15th, 2007
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by vNe (7 reviews)
    good price, compact, lightweight, great optical quality, fast
    variable aperture

    This is a great lens. Small, compact and great image quality at a bargin price. Images are crisp and sharp. Contrast is high with good color saturation. There is some distortion at either extreme, but that's being nit-picky. Focusing with AF-S is super fast and on the dot. The lens is also internal focus, so the barrel does not rotate, saving you trouble with readjusting filters. After banging around on hikes, I find the construction to be pretty good.

    There really isn't any drawbacks on this lens. This lens would have been perfect if it was f/3.5 all the way. The variable aperature makes it slightly more challenging to focus on the long end.

    If you need an affordable lens that gives you some flexibility, this is it.

    reviewed January 14th, 2007 (purchased for $250)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by rcoder (6 reviews)
    compact, sturdy, AF-S is great (and fast!), good focal range
    zoom ring can stick a bit, slow aperture at tele end

    All the reviews of this lens point out its optical quality, which I won't dispute, but they don't tend to comment much on the physical construction, aside from the occasional reference to it being made mostly of plastic. I can say from first-hand experience, though, that it can also take a pretty serious beating and come back no worse for the wear: a friend once knocked my D70 off a high counter with this lens attached, and although I initially thought it might be toast, (the MF ring was stuck, and AF failed entirely) a few tugs of the focusing ring back and forth freed it up, and it has performed flawlessly since then.

    That being said, I only use this lens about 15% of the time, since I'm a total bokeh-junky, and chafe at not being able to open it up wider than f/3.5 (or f/4.5 at the long end). I'm also one of those weirdos who *like* the restrictions imposed by having a fixed focal length, so I do most of my shooting with primes. This lens does have a great focal range, though, and I've been quite happy with the output when I do use it.

    reviewed January 14th, 2007
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by Jericho (4 reviews)
    Price, Value for money
    Distortion in wide

    Pretty good lens, for its price, its cheap, light, nice zoom range, about 28 - 105 on 35 mm equivalent.

    Its a bit soft on open apertures, and a bit soft on corners.

    It vignettes on corners too.

    Recommendable as a pretty cheap all around zoom lens.

    reviewed January 13th, 2007 (purchased for $300)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by JoSKaT (5 reviews)
    For a kit lens, it's sharp. General purpose lens coverage
    for the price, non

    Just like the rest of the reviews, they got this lens as a bundled kit to their camera. I got this with my Nikon D80.
    There's 2 kits that came with D80, one's with the 18-135 and the 18-70. I would have gotten 18-135 because of the lens coverage. But i researched alot before i went and bought the camera. It's those reviews that made me chose this lens over 18-135. And i believe i did the right choice. I have gotten good and sharp photos with this lens. For people just now starting on DSLR this is a good beginners lens unless you have money to burn then get something like the 18-200 VR...but we're talking about this lens, so lets go on..
    When this lens first came out, alot of folks that tested this lens were surprised because it performed rather well for a bundled lens. It does only proved that Nikon does put together their lenses with utmost quality even on their kit lenses. Actually i dont even use my 50mm anymore. I just have this lens on my D80 and never take it off....until i get my 18-200 VR, but that will be another review.

    reviewed January 7th, 2007 (purchased for $300)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by chili-master (2 reviews)
    Quality construction, quiet focusing, excellent image quality
    Expensive for a kit lens, zoom for shorter focal lengths are crammed together

    I got this as a kit lens with my D80. The salesman suggested me to get this (instead of the 18-135) and I'm glad I did.

    What I liked:

    - Lens feels very solid in my hand. I used the 18-55 on a friend's D50 and it feels cheap compared to my 18-70.
    - Metal lens mount (instead of plastic on the 18-135).
    - Focuses quickly and very quietly.
    - Excellent image quality. There is a bit of distortion at 18mm but it's not noticeable in real world use.
    - Don't need focal lengths over 70mm because this lens lacks VR (stabilization). If I want more zoom I'd get a zoom lens with VR because it's difficult to get sharp pictures at 70mm indoors.
    - Covers the complete zoom range of a typical point and shoot camera (I upgraded to the D80 from a 3x optical zoom point and shoot).

    What I didn't:

    - A bit expensive for a kit lens. I had to spend quite a bit more compared to getting a Canon Rebel XTi with kit lens ($200 more for the D80 and $200 more for this lens).
    - Shorter focal lengths (lower zoom levels) are crammed together on the zoom ring. This makes it harder to set the zoom precisely, as turning the zoom ring a little changes the zoom a lot. This is not a problem at longer focal lengths (higher zoom) as they are more spaced out on the zoom ring.

    I recommend this lens for anyone getting their first DSLR as well as anyone looking for a general purpose zoom lens to complement their longer range zooms.

    reviewed January 6th, 2007 (purchased for $300)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by Ross_Alford (36 reviews)
    High image quality, solid build, AF-S
    Not quite enough macro or telephoto ability, no VR

    I bought this lens along with my D70 in April 2004. it served me well, and I still have it to use as a second-string lens for snapshots. It has been overshadowed by other lenses, though, and I'm not sure I would bother getting it now unless it came with a camera for very little extra money.

    That said, if you are a casual shooter, only want one lens, and don't want to spend a fortune, this may well be a better choice than the less expensive 18-55 Nikkor, although if you like to do macro, maybe not as I gather that focuses substantially closer.

    Pros: Its image quality cannot be argued with. It is very sharp with excellent contrast. It is not prone to flare. It feels quite solidly constructed, and mine has certainly held up very well.

    Cons: It doesn't have a great enough zoom range for me to be quite happy with it as a "walk-around" lens. the wideangle end is wide enough for that purpose, but the tele end is short; only about 2x, not enough to really pull in anything distant. It lacks VR, which is very useful in a do-everything lens. Its maximum magnification in macro focusing isn't high enough for the sorts of closeups I do. In short, it is very high quality, but except for the wideangle, none of its extremes are extreme enough.

    If you want an inexpensive, do-everything lens, I would recommend the 18-200 Sigma over this lens. It is not very expensive, is smaller and lighter, focuses closer, and has a much more useful telephoto end. I find its image quality to be about as good. If you want an expensive, relatively large and heavy do-everything lens, you cannot beat the 18-200 Nikkor VR ED IF AF-S, which is what I use now.

    Sample images:

    reviewed January 6th, 2007
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by trentdp (26 reviews)
    Great walk around lens when you want to travel light

    I recently got this lens with the D70s Kit so I estimate it cost about $200 based on a market rate of $600 for the bare camera. I have only used the lens briefly but every good thing I read about it appears true. I have not had any problems to report. It takes really sharp pictures and focuses almost instantly.
    As an aside from this review, I highly recommend that you pickup one of the D70s kits before they are all sold out. For my large hands, the D70s is a much better fit than any of the newer models except the D200. Ritz Camera and other online sellers, sell the kit for about $800 which is an incredible value. I paid $750 for my body only D70 about two years ago.
    If you read the DPReview of the new D80 and see the photos comparing the D80 and D70, to my eyes the D80 only has larger photos which would be relevent for prints larger than 8x10. I am aware of the other D80 features, but for me the SD storage was the deal breaker.
    The 18-70 lens still retails for $300 - $400 most places so this is a good opportunity to get one with the close out D70s kit.

    reviewed January 5th, 2007 (purchased for $200)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by yuj (5 reviews)
    Good sharpness, pleasing color, very good aperture and zoom range for kit lens, AF-S.
    Barrel extends too far for my taste, 67mm filter.

    First and foremost, this is an excellent kit lens and it covers a very useful normal 27-105 for nice, wide landscapes as well as pleasing portraits (minus the small aperture around that range). Wide open at all lengths, I have no complaints about sharpness, although it isn't going to cut you. Stopped down, the lens becomes a very good performer.

    Flare and ghosting is well controlled and the lens reproduces colors nicely and vividly. Mine copy is starting to show signs of wear though (after 2 good years of use), as the lens will no longer retract to 18mm if I am zooming out from 70mm. It hits 24mm and stops, and I must make a slight turn in the opposite direction and turn it back before it will retract to 18mm. Slight barrel misalignment error but it has not affected the sharpness of the lens.

    For most people, this lens and a telezoom would be everything that they would ever need.

    reviewed January 5th, 2007
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by Craig C123 (2 reviews)
    Decent IQ, comparatively light, decent zoom range.
    Not stellar IQ

    Initially buying a Sigma zoom for my new Nikon D50, i quickly returned it and I traded up, paying a bit more to get this Nikon 17-70. For the money, i consider it a great buy. And it seems a fairly light lens for the decent quality it can deliver. It focuses fast and quietly. I've had good results with close up (though not macro) shots. Zooming out i haven't been so impressed, but i'm attributing this more to the D50's somewhat wacky color bleeding in brightly lit settings.

    reviewed January 1st, 2007 (purchased for $250)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by leoric (4 reviews)
    Internal focusing, silent wave motor, ED glass, metal lens mount
    67mm filter diameter, max aperture at 70mm only 4.5

    I bought this lens together with my D70 and I was immediately surprised with the focusing speed and the fact that it's very quiet.

    This lens has a perspective equivalent to a 27-105mm lens in 35mm terms. The optical quality is very good (certainly better than other kit lenses) and once you stop down the lens a bit, you even excellent results at 18mm.

    Other handy features are the M/A switch and the distance information window.

    This is not the fastest lens in terms of aperture, but considering the price of a 2.8 zoom, there are no complaints.

    The biggest problem is the 67mm diameter, which can make filters quite pricey (especially circular polarizers).

    If I had had enough money for a 17-55mm 2.8 zoom, I would have bought it instead of the 18-70 3.5-4.5, but for a tight budget like mine, this is an ideal lens. I recommend it wholeheartedly.

    reviewed December 26th, 2006 (purchased for $300)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by btjh86 (10 reviews)
    Excellent kit lens, fast silent AF.
    Not as fast as I would like, mine is starting to show lens creep, zoom ring not smooth

    I got this with my D70s kit. It is an excellent bundled lens and it has served very well as an all round lens. I have shot beautiful landscapes and portraits using this lens. It is a little soft at 70mm, but at 18mm, its a beauty. Autofocus is fast just like the other AF-S lenses and it has no problems in tracking moving subjects such as cars and bikes even on my D70s. I can imagine it being better on more expensive bodies.

    reviewed December 24th, 2006 (purchased for $1,000)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by Kong47 (9 reviews)
    lightweight, fast and quiet af, good range, decent build
    slow at 70mm, not weather sealed

    This is my most used lens. It has a great range and is nicely weighted for all day use. Image quality is very good at all focal lengths and all apertures. It gets very sharp in the f5.6-8 range, but I often use this lens wide open. Autofocus is very fast and near silent. CA is low, but can show up in high contrast areas or backlit situations. Distortion is medium barrel to very minor pincushion. It doesn't bother me at all in my shots. Build quality is quite good considering the price. Whenever I need a lens for general shooting or traveling, this is the lens I take. A great bargain for all Nikon DSLR users.

    reviewed December 22nd, 2006 (purchased for $285)
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by bradjolly (2 reviews)
    Tack sharp througout the zoom range, accurate color, excellent value and reasonable distortion
    none really, maybe VR would be great to offset slower aperture speed of lens

    I have read good and bad remarks about the 18-70 lens (mostly good, though). Maybe it's a question of whether you get a good copy or not. In any case, my 18-70 Nikon is excellent in every way: sharpness, color, contrast, distortion (obviously there is some as noted on the official review on this website, but it is entirely reasonable considering the zoom range and the price). I own a D200 and decided to run this lens through the typical battery of testing through the various focal lengths and apertures. I did not find anything whatsoever to complain about. I also own the Nikon 50 1.4 lens and at 50mm, this zoom seems every bit the equal at equivalent aperture speeds. Obviously the lens is slower and would prevent use in low-light conditions without flash or higher ISO settings (maybe VR would be cool to have). At 18mm it's a little soft until 4.5 (5.6 and slower is excellent), but only a little soft and entirely acceptable as any lens (excluding the Pro series Nikkors) tends to be soft wide open. Trust me, if your copy is as good as mine, you will be completely happy with the 18-70. I am, and I highly recommend it! (I would love to have the 18-200 VR, but who knows when I will ever see one as Nikon has told dealers 6-12 month delays, too bad: I would love to have one of these. Until then, I am happily shooting with my 18-70 on my D200 as my main lens).

    reviewed December 18th, 2006 (purchased for $309)
  • 5 out of 10 points and recommended by kanabeans (5 reviews)
    Good range for average shots
    Not very sharp, doesn't go as wide as I'd like

    This is the lens that came with my camera. I was never a big fan of this lens. I needed something that would handle low-light situations better and the lens was never as sharp as I would have liked so ended up selling it.

    reviewed December 17th, 2006 (purchased for $350)
  • 6 out of 10 points and recommended by privid (5 reviews)
    Light weight, optically superior to 18-55,
    build quality to stay home and watch TV for,

    A very respectable kit lens but nothing more. It will suit most people most of the time but if you intend on venturing beyond the cafe strip you might run into trouble. Apart from the mount it's basically all plastic. It has a troubling amount of give extended at 70mm. Mine didn't last me more than 4hrs of moderate hiking before it transformed itself into a creaking and wining 24-50 grrr! Images captured though were great, don't not buy this because of image concerns, don't buy this because of build.

    reviewed December 16th, 2006 (purchased for $297)
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by Drache (3 reviews)
    Great image quality
    Its slow

    This is a great medium telephoto lens. Before i bought my first camera i did tons of research and found that this particular lens always had good reviews and many people recommended it. The quality of this lens is far better than i thought. And its very portable, its a small lens but bigger than the 18-55. I think this is the best medium telephoto lens for this price. Great starting lens.

    reviewed December 15th, 2006 (purchased for $250)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by deanzat (9 reviews)
    useful range, surprising image quality

    When I made the leap to digital (and I really leapt, selling my 8008s bodies; burning my ships so to speak), I was just going to buy a D70 body, but standing in the store, I decided to get this lens so I would have some wide angle capability.

    Funny, because I was only getting the D70 so I could use all my old lenses, but this lens is so ridiculously practical that I use it a lot. I mean, really a lot.

    As a travel lens, I just love it. It's been to Venice, and it's been to the inauguration of the WWII Memorial, and with the SB800 it's a fantastic party or event lens.

    I will likely eventually get a faster wide zoom, but if I was going to be stuck somewhere for a couple of weeks and could only have one of my current lenses, this would be the one.

    reviewed December 12th, 2006
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by nullphotography (5 reviews)
    cheap, light, picture quality
    slow lens

    Received this as a kit lens with my d70s and it has been an excellent performer. It's a great kit lens and excellent for beginners just entering into slr cameras. It's a very light and compact lens. Not as well constructed as a pro lens but pretty good for being plastic. Only con is the slow f/3.5, pros would prefer a faster f/2.8 lens. The 18-70mm focal length is a great zoom and has lots of reach for a small zoom. Couple this with a 70-300mm telephoto and you have a great set for everyday use.

    reviewed December 10th, 2006
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by JStiffey (5 reviews)
    Weight and size
    Not very smooth

    The standard kit lens that came with my D70 and has served me well.
    I do find than now after almost 2 years of use the focus and zoom rings are getting gritty and rough.
    The lens still produces sharp images and is very compact for the focal range.

    It is my "primary" lens still and due to it's versatility.

    Still a "slow" lens when full zoomed out to 70.

    I have even put a rather large "chip" into the front element along the filter ring. Due to removing a stuck filter. :(
    The chip is horrendous looking, but the lens still performs well with no distortion or loss of image quality.

    For a "cheap" Nikor lens it certainly has worked well for me.

    reviewed December 9th, 2006
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by kirehe (9 reviews)
    Fast focusing, nice range, nice build quality.
    Tad slow at long end.

    Very nice kit lens. Sharp, moderate distortion (much better than Canon 17-85 IS), and light. Fast focusing too.

    Enjoying low-light photo, I found it slightly slow at long end (f/4.5). Also it's close-focusing capabilities are not so good (38cm/1'3 or something). If you like macro, look at Sigma 17-70 or 18-50 instead.

    reviewed December 5th, 2006 (purchased for $300)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by weisgrau (6 reviews)
    A close to a perfect performer that you will ever get at its price

    I can't say enough good things about this lens, and I have more Nikon lenses than I have fingers. Its equiv. focal length of 27 to 105mm make it a great choice when you are only going to be carrying one lens. Its optical performance is superb and it is built well enough that it can take a few bangs and bumps - I have put mine to that test accidently while mountain hiking. It is on my D200 all the time because if I want to grab a camera and be able to cover almost anything with success and no lens changes, this lens is my choice.

    reviewed December 5th, 2006 (purchased for $225)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by danwatson (7 reviews)
    Excellant Build, Overall Performance, Price
    None so far

    I recently purchased this lens to upgrade my 28-80g. I spent a few months researching lenses and I wanted the most 'bang-for-the-buck'. Though I desired 'pro' glass, the Nikon 17-55 DX was way out of my reach. The 18-70, while no 17-55, delivers similar IQ with a very nice build at a quarter of the cost.

    The first thing that surprised me when I purchased this lens is the build. The lens has a nice feel to it, and inspires confidence. The zoom ring and manual focus rings are nice and smooth and the manual focus override is a nice touch. This lens really fills out the frame of the D50, and gives it a nice professional look. So how does it perform? It's very sharp even wide-open and stopped down (just a hair) it's a remarkable optic. Color and Contrast are quite pronounced; in fact I was surprised at just how much ‘bite’ the ED elements deliver in this optic. Focus is fast, if you are not used to a real AF-S lens (as I was), be prepared as this thing focuses quickly and silently. Considering the max aperture is 3.5-4.5, this lens is also a decent performer indoors under reasonable lighting. I am very impressed with the lens and highly recommend it to anyone wanting pro performance at a 'not-so-pro' price.

    reviewed December 5th, 2006 (purchased for $320)
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by JoeSchu (5 reviews)
    Lightweight, sharp thru whole range, very flexible
    Slow (f/4-5)

    This was my kit lens, so it is hard to really get down on it, but after using (but not owning) the 18-200VR, I'll be ready to give it up when the time is right.

    It has great "walkaround" range and usefulness, but it just can't handle indoor lighting conditions without the flash. You just can't squeeze enough light in, which is too bad, because it relegates your walkaround lens to a tripod.

    Build quality and fit on the D70 are impecable. I even had the misfortune to have a drink spilled on mine, and it remains very functional.

    This is in no way, shape or form a pro lens. I'm dying for an f/2.8 in this zoom range. However, it is a great starter for anyone entering the DSLR world and wants a flexible outdoor walkaround lens.

    reviewed December 5th, 2006
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by spuelijah (9 reviews)
    Great Value For Price, Useful Range, Non-Rotating Front Element, Good Build, AF-S

    This is my most used lens because of its useful focal range. I traded my kit 18-55mm for this lens and the only thing I regret is not doing it sooner. Its better build quality alone to me is worth the higher price. The included lens hood is also a welcomed addition and I use it whenever I'm outdoors.

    The only fault I've found with this lens is the vignetting. I have a few outdoor shots where the corners are slightly darker. I need to stress the word "siightly." This doesn't occur often, but it does happen. My favorite part about this lens is the AF-S. Focusing seems instant. I never noticed it until I got a 50mm 1.8D and a Sigma 150mm HSM.

    reviewed December 2nd, 2006 (purchased for $200)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by mimic (7 reviews)
    inexpensive (d70 kit), small ,SWM, great digital standart zoom, good apertures
    distorsion at 18, i feel 70mm a bit short,

    I bought it as a kit with d70 for only 150$ more than body only.
    it's a wonderful kit lens with d70, for an amateur at least.

    The AF is really fast and can be adjusted manually, thanks SWM.
    good buidling quality, no play between parts, seal around the mount, well balanced with D70.
    overall image quality is very good, but distorsion a 18mm can be annoying above all at short focusing distance.
    sharpness is very good stopped down 1 stop.

    overall, one of the best quality/price standard zoom for DSLR I've seen.

    reviewed December 1st, 2006 (purchased for $150)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by bullfr (9 reviews)
    Sharp, compact, well built - great as part of a kit
    Vignetting at 18mm, wide angle

    As mentionned before, this lens is a the perfect basic companion of the D70 - it is a sturdy, well designed lens, with all that what needs to start having fun !! As part of the kit, it is definitely a grat advantage of the D70, especially now that prices are dropping. AF is great, optics are more than fine for a lens.
    Of course, one cannot expect the quality of primes, but considering its size, price and zoom range, it is well above average !!
    There is quit an important amount of vignetting at 18mm ; ok, this can be easily removed through software, but one cannot use the images straight out of the camera.
    I would prefer it if it could be a bit more wide angle, but well, it is an all(around lens ; also, the widest settings are a bit difficult to set finely.

    reviewed December 1st, 2006
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by jemaerca (5 reviews)
    inexpensive, compact size and weight, easy manual override of auto-focus, fast and silent auto-focus
    Will not work with film cameras

    Strengths: inexpensive, compact size and weight, easy manual override of auto-focus, fast and silent auto-focus

    Weaknesses: Will not work with film cameras

    Comments: This is very nice DX lens from Nikon. It will work with Nikon digital SLRs like the D50, D70/D70s, D80, D200, etc. Using it with a film camera body will produce pictures with severe vignetting. The 18-70mm lens has a very usable zoom range although most will probably want a more length (of course, we almost always want more zoom power regardless of what lens we are using!). For about $250 gently used, this is great value for the performance it gives. It is sharp, contrasty, and keeps distortion under control.

    Overall, a very nice lens from Nikon that I would highly recommend.

    reviewed November 30th, 2006 (purchased for $250)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by lseguy (4 reviews)
    Fast AF, manual focus override in M/A, image quality
    vignetting & distorsion wide open, zoom scale & stiffness from 18 to 35mm

    I bought mine used, for a D50. This one is likely to become my walk-around lens !! Great image quality (sharpness & contrast) over the zoom range, fast & accurate AF. Possibility to over-ride the AF in M/A mode can help under specific conditions. Difficult to find con's...

    If you shoot quite often using the wide range (let say from 18 to 35mm), the zoom ring is quite stiff on mine, and you jump from 18 to 35 (*2 factor !) with very little move.

    reviewed November 29th, 2006 (purchased for $230)
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by Fahza (3 reviews)
    Perfect kit lens for a DSLR, AF-S
    Maybe the closest focussing distance, could be a tad closer

    This is a very good "walk about" lens on a DSLR.

    Colors and sharpness are as good as can be expected. The only bad thing I can think of in terms of image quality is the barrel distortion at the wide end. You really have to watch where you place the horizon in the frame or take care of it in post processing.

    I sometimes miss a closer minimum focussing distance.

    I'm very satisfied with this lens.


    reviewed November 28th, 2006 (purchased for $300)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by janda (5 reviews)
    Light, fast and sharp
    Could have faster aperatures

    Nothing bad to say about this lens, delivers what it promises. In good lightning results are very good. In low light it just isn't able to do miracles.

    Good value choice for midrange zoom, if you have too much money I would imagine that better can be found.

    reviewed November 27th, 2006 (purchased for $300)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by rbh8252 (3 reviews)
    Great valus as p/o the D70s kit.
    Manual focus ring feels cheep and is very compressed

    All-in-all a very nice lens, I don't know that I would of bought it as a seperate item if I didn't get it with my D70s.
    However, this lens has proven to be very versital. The 18-70 (27-105) range has proven itself in the field and is the only lens I carry when packpacking and hiking.
    My only gripe is when manual focusing and that is a common thing with most AF lenses.

    reviewed November 27th, 2006
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by abrahamd (4 reviews)
    AFS, Solid, Sharp

    For the price, this is a wonderful lens. I bought this lens with my D200 and am really very impressed with the images made from it. I find that I like the balanced feel of this solid little lens on a heavy body, such as the D200, for handheld shots. I also like the extremely useful range of this lens and the moderately close focusing ability of it. All in all, this lens seems to be a really good, fast focusing all round performer.

    reviewed November 26th, 2006 (purchased for $175)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by freundez (9 reviews)
    Compact, sharp zoom
    Vignetting/shading wide open at 18mm

    I've shot with this lens for over a year and am still very impressed with its performance. This lens with my D70s plus the 10.5mm makes for a light flexible setup when out on day hikes or backpacking trips.

    From 24 to 55mm, my sample is very sharp. In doing comparisons at 35mm, from f/5.6 up, the 18-70 is as sharp, if not sharper than my 35mm f/2. Are there times where I'd like a constant aperature? Yes, but on a price-to-performance basis, this really is a great piece of glass. Miles better than the 18-55 kit lens offered on the Canon Rebel DSLR's.

    reviewed November 22nd, 2006 (purchased for $300)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by sandharvest (3 reviews)
    Sharp Lens, quick focus, SWM, ED, IF and solid build

    I noticed in an earlier review that a poster said this was a great kit lens for a D70. Well, it is. It is also a geat lens for a D2X or any DSLR Nikon builds!

    Why? Well, for one, look at the blur index test on this site. The lens is tack sharp - it does not matter what the APS sensor resolution is for the camera it is mounted on.

    It has low chroma. Distortion is easily dealt with in post. Buy it, you will not be dissapointed!

    Highly recommended - mine gives me sharp, contrasty images.

    reviewed November 22nd, 2006 (purchased for $264)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by audioguru1 (7 reviews)
    cheap, AFS
    sharpness, and not fast

    This is a GREAT lens for the d70, which in all fairness is all that it was intended for.

    On higher resolution bodies like my s2, and d80 its not that amazingly sharp. Part of the problem with sharpness is the lens starts out at 3.5, so its hard to stop down and get good results. Honestly my standards are probably unrealistically high for such a reasonably priced lens.

    This lens does have great color and contrast. The focus speed is good too.

    Its very plastic feeling, and the zoom isnt as smooth as it could be. I get the feeling the zoom would get loose over time. So far mine is fine though.

    The lens is handy since it gets your pretty wide.

    reviewed November 20th, 2006 (purchased for $300)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by OldRedFox (14 reviews)
    Good (but not great) zoom range, excellent IQ. Great quality for the price
    Some small focus issues, could use a distance scale

    This is a solid lens, and certainly the best of any "Kit" lens being offered by anyone. The range is great for landscape to casual portraits. The image quality is fairly sharp once you stop down one or two stops. There are distortions, but PTLens (a $15 PS add-in) corrects them nicely. For a starter lens that will stick around for many years, this is the gold standard.

    reviewed November 20th, 2006 (purchased for $250)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by MariuszJ (6 reviews)
    internal focusing, manual autofocus override
    for this price - you shouldn't complain

    I got this lens as my D70s Outfit - and I am happy with this lens so far. I like the idea of overriding autofocus without switching any buttons - just move focus ring and it's done, press shuter halfway - and it's back on focus point again. Texture on focus and zoom rings could be more different - to be easier to know which ring you have your fingers on, but after couple hunderts of shots you'll get used to it. You'll also like internal focusing feature when shooting with polarizer or special effects filters (front element doesn't move when focusing).
    If you ask me for images quality - I'd say - works for me everyday - either I'm shooting Grand Canyon at sunrise, or my neighbourhood at the sunset:)
    overall - a must-have lens for beginers and passionate Nikon owners

    reviewed November 19th, 2006
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by jeans (15 reviews)
    inexpensive, useful zoom range, AF-S
    mediocre image quality

    Useful zoom range
    AF-S (the A/F on my D70 is fast and sure)
    Price - can be found really cheap now
    Very light for an AF-S zoom (Nikon's moder trend)
    Good color

    Variable aperture
    Distortions are visible at zoom extremes
    Image quality is mediocre (maybe it's only my samle as common belief is that it's a nice lens)
    Sharpness and contrast aren't great

    It's a nice inexpensive lens if you don't demand fast apertures and critical sharpness.
    Much better (convenient) alternative would be Nikkor 18-200 VR, but it's more expensive and doesn't offer a significant boost in image quality.

    reviewed November 17th, 2006 (purchased for $300)
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by fjbrad (2 reviews)
    A good balance of quality and price
    Distortion at wide angle, poor as a macro

    I bought this lens as part of a kit with a D70 two years ago, and it has been a real good walk-around lens. It is on the camera 90% of the time.
    Construction, image quality, and focus performance are all much better than average compared to other consumer level zooms that I've used.
    Images are reasonably sharp and contrasty at mid-range apertures, and a little soft wide open.
    I often find myself wanting more range at the long end of the lens (70mm/ 105mm equivalent).
    If one can afford it (and find it!), the 18-200 VR lens is a much better choice, and if the new 18-135 afs tests out well, the extra reach at the telephoto end would be a wise upgrade, possibly saving one from the possibility of exposing the camera to dust during lens changes.

    reviewed November 15th, 2006
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by Zed (8 reviews)
    Flexible focal lenghts, better than other kit lenses, AF-S
    Sometimes soft, especially if wide open

    This lens came with my D70 kit back in February 2004. I will not claim for it to be best of the best, but it is quite a reasonable performer. In combination with the 70-300 f/4-5.6 G I purchased along side, it provided me with a solid year of good quality shots.

    This lens does have heavy distortion at 18mm and is quite soft if you leave it wide open for my tastes. By no means does this outperform the Nikon 17-55 f/2.8, but it does provide much greater flexibility in the focal lengths.

    If you are starting off in the digital slr world, consider this lens as part of a kit. It is much better than other kit lenses and it gives you a taste of AF-S for when you decide to get bigger and better lenses.

    reviewed November 15th, 2006
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by andrew720 (6 reviews)
    Sharpness, fast focus, image quality

    I finally bought this lens after using several other lenses with my D70 which I had bought as a body only.
    I'm very impressed with the sharpness and image quality of this lens. It seems to have married itself to my camera far better than other lenses I've used.
    Focus speed is excellent and the manual override is a nice addition.
    Build quality is fine for a lens in this price range, it took a little while to get used to the position of the focus and zoom rings but now I acually feel I'm holding the camera steadier with the outer placed zoom ring.

    reviewed September 11th, 2006 (purchased for $260)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by ralph_wagner (1 reviews)
    lightweight, AF speed adequate (for most shooting)
    none for the price

    Been using this lens for a couple of months now on a D200. Hasn't disappointed me yet. Not for critical architecture shooting, but for everything else it's great. Color and contrast are very good.

    reviewed August 18th, 2006 (purchased for $225)
  • 7 out of 10 points and recommended by Josstover (4 reviews)
    fast, nice build, good focusing, good allround lens
    distortion, kinda dark, sometimes moiré

    Bought this lens seperately (not as a kit) for my D70, because a needed more wide-angle and because of the many excellent reviews.

    Did-not work out for me. I do a lot of architecture and this lens has a lot of barrel distortion. With this lens my D70 produced obscure, rather oversaturated pictures. On fine mazed surfaces sometimes moiré can be seen, and it is not too sharp.

    So I got rid of it quiet soon and bought the Sigma 20-40mm f2.8 instead, which is excellent compared to this kitlens, that is for my kind of use. I think as an allround lens for landscape and family use, the nikkor 18-70mm will satisfy all your needs.

    reviewed August 16th, 2006 (purchased for $180)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by vienna (5 reviews)
    Useful zoom range and relatively fast
    Just OK resolution and build quality

    This is the Digital Age's equivalent of the mighty Nikkor 28-105, without the handy macro function. It seems pretty good until you compare it with f2.8-league glass, and the build quality is only adequate. I think it's overpriced but what else you gonna do if you want 3-shot-to-portrait range?

    reviewed July 14th, 2006 (purchased for $350)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by SoCalMan (1 reviews)
    Excellent performance for the price
    Build quality could be improved

    This lens is destined to be a Nikon classic, not because its image quality is fantastic, but rather because it offers an unusual combination of quality and price.

    I own two Nikkor 18-70 zooms. I have more than 20,000 images with this lens.

    Optical quality is very good. The lens is sharp at all apertures, has good contrast, focuses quickly and reliably, and has excellent macro performance. There is some variability lens to lens, try to test several if you can. These lenses easily exceed the resolution of a 6MP camera (e.g., Nikon D70s), and test the resolution of a NikonD200 (10.5MP).

    Build quality is OK, but not first rate. On the other hand, this lens will be obsolete well before it wears out.

    There are two significant issues. First, there is a lot of vignetting, especially at 18mm. This is easily corrected in Photoshop or Nikon Capture. Second, there is moderate distortion at 18mm, and it is complex and CANNOT be easily fixed with software. Be careful taking pictures with a flat horizon.

    As a one off lens, it is priced at about $300 as of June 2006. As a kit lens, it is much cheaper. At these prices, it is an extraordinary bargain.

    I have tested this lens against Nikon's new 18-200 zoom. Up to 70mm, the 18-70 is every bit as good, and better in some samples. Of course, there is no VR. My experience with the 18-200 is that it starts to fall apart rapidly after 100mm.

    reviewed June 23rd, 2006 (purchased for $250)
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by wei (3 reviews)
    light weight, 18MM, fast focus.
    its not 2.8, Ive seen fastr and better sharpness lenses

    nice lens, works great with the D70, light but not as good as the 17-55 F2.8. the 18MM is important on 1.5 cameras like D70, D2X and all other family brothers and sisters. fast focus, not the sharpness I familier with but in the overall good performance.

    reviewed November 27th, 2005 (purchased for $400)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by Sumeet (5 reviews)
    Excellent image quality sharp images
    Slight vignetting when wide open

    This is a fantastic lens for the price. I have been using this for about 2 months now and I am extremely happy with sharp and good images, fast accurate focusing with manual override. I opted for this lens with D50.

    Any better optic than this and you will have to spend top $$ (Almost 3 times, considering the Nikkor 17-55. A better & brighter lens but I believe none of the lenses are free from CA, geometric distortion & vigenetting so 18-70 makes the best choice for money spent.). A must have for all Nikonian as a general purpose all round everyday lens.

    Slight vignetting, geometric distortion when wide open at 18mm but you can correct this in post processing (use PTlens a freeware at

    reviewed November 20th, 2005
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by NikonEddy (3 reviews)
    Focal length range, Price
    Could be faster

    I finally decided to have this lens when I bought the D70, at first I was against it but I certainly dont regret it, Its a great lens, no discernible vignetting at any focal length. Very easy to hold and use. Highly recommended for Nikon owners

    reviewed November 14th, 2005
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by langier (11 reviews)
    Small and lightweight
    Not the best build for heavy usage

    This is a Nikon sleeper in the league of the 36-72 and 70-150 Series-E lenses.

    Cheap and optically sharp. Light weight and compact.

    Not a bullet-proof build, but much cheaper than the 17-55. A good range with a 35mm equivalent of about 27-105.

    Even on a D2x, this is a very good lens and covers a very adequate range with a longer reach than the 17-55 at less than 25% its cost.

    reviewed November 5th, 2005 (purchased for $250)
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by WCranston (4 reviews)
    Lightweight inexpensive quality optic for DSLR
    "Only" 70 on the highend. No VR and not 2.8.

    This is a great lens for the price, especially when bought as part of a kit. The out of focus areas are quite nice and smooth (WAY better than the Nikon 28-200 G.) This lens is very sharp. I give it a 10 overall because of awesome price/performance ratio and gave an 8 for image quality because 10 is reserved for 70-210 VR and 85 1.4.

    reviewed November 3rd, 2005 (purchased for $200)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by dumbo (3 reviews)
    Nice zoom range, Good image quality
    Some vignetting on the wide end if shot wide open

    This lens is very good. It has a nice zoom range and is a very handy allround lens, reaching from wide to short tele. Being sold as a "kit lens" with the D70 this lens was considered "A cheapo kit lens" when it fisrt hit the market, with the Canon 18-55 in mind. Time have shown that Nikon chose to provide a much better lens for the first time SLR buyers. This lens have very good image quality.
    It's sharp throughout the range, with it's sweet spot at 24-35mm.
    It's sharp allready wide open, but gets sharper when stopped down to f/5.6-f/8, where it has it's sweet spot.
    Chromatic Aberrations is very well controlled, and is small enough to not really be seen in a print, even if you provoke the lens to show it's worst.
    The downside of this lens is the vignetting. It's not very bad, but wide open at the wide end it's clearly visible with large areas w/o much detail. It can easily be corrected for in software in the few cases it's annoying.
    Distortion could be less of course, but as long as you're not an architectural shooter you can correct for this distortion using PTLens or another suitable software on the few pictures where this is disturbing.

    Overall this is a very good lens and very much worth it's price. When bought in kit with a D70 it's a steal.

    Of course there are things that could be better. The contrast could be better. A f/2.8 aparture wouldn't hurt either. But then the price would be much higher. This is a very good compromise.

    reviewed October 25th, 2005
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by neticen (3 reviews)
    Handy zoom range, surprising build quality, great value
    Not quite wide enough on the wide end, and some vignetting, both minor

    This lens is a phenomenal value with the D70 kit. It is light, flexible, and the image quality AND build quality is the best of any lens I have ever seen in a body kit from Canon or Nikon.

    There have been some people harping on this lens for vignetting, and yes some of it is true. There is some vignetting at 18mm wide open and it is annoying. On the other hand, it is not nearly as bad as some have made it out to be. If you really want to work in very wide angles, you need to be using a different lens. This is a utility zoom lens and you need to adjust your expectations.

    I personally think that everyone who owns an Nikon dSLR should have this lens. It is like that great screwdriver that just seems to fit. It is never perfect, but it is almost always "good enough" that you are glad it was handy.

    reviewed October 21st, 2005
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by afs (4 reviews)
    great range, excellent performance at a good price, AF-S, very sharp when stopped down and excellent overall.
    cheap build, large extension while zooming, aperture, sharpness unless stopped down

    I had this as my kit lens with My D70 for the first 6 months or so. I took many beautiful pictures with it. It has proven to be a very good solution as a lightweight all-around lens.
    Sharpest when stopped down to f/8-f/11, this lens is not bad wide open, and improves as you stop down towards the sweet spot. I found that using flash helped a lot, since you could afford to stop down more in some situations.
    The lens covers a very good range for the beginner and intermediate photographer...and its image quality is good enough for a pro's lightweight lens. But it still has a lot to be desired.
    For one, I found construction to be lackluster after I got to know about better lenses, and held a few pro lenses. Eventually the plasticky build, shaky front section, and doubling in length when zooming made me seek a better alternative. I also found the 3.5-4.5 aperture limiting, and the need to stop down so much also was a problem.
    The small manual focus ring I did not like at all in feel or size.
    A good lens overall for the beginner or for a light travel lens. But there are many better lenses out there.

    reviewed October 20th, 2005 (purchased for $250)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by aryko (9 reviews)
    Best wide-angle bang for the buck
    DX lens, vignetting with Cokin filter system at wide angle

    This is a great lens, and a fabulous value when purchased with the D70. It covers a very wide zoom range - 18mm to 70mm which covers many situations. The lens contains at least one ED element, which helps with chromatic abberation. It's lightweight but has some metal components.

    The lens has very few drawbacks; the only one I can see is that I use the Cokin P filter system, and at 18-20mm there is some vignetting from the mount adapter. I suspect you wouldn't get this with a slim screw-on filter.

    The aperture range is 3.5 - 4.5, the practical effect being that you are always in the f/4 range on the wide end. It ramps up pretty quickly - I think around 35mm it's already at f/4, then f/4.2 at 50mm. The minimum opening size is f/22 (at 18mm) - f/29 (at 70mm).

    It's a G-class DX lens, so you can't use it on older Nikon bodies that don't set the aperture on the body; as well, as it's a DX lens, it would vignette on film. I can't testify to this directly, but perhaps at around 50mm you'd zoom past the vignette.

    As an AF-S lens it's the quietest lens I own, and it has a switch to go between Manual (M) operation and Manual/Auto (M/A) operation. I see no reason to ever switch it out of M/A - basically it operates on autofocus, but you can tweak the focus with the focus wheel without switching it to manual.

    It's no an internal zoom model, so there is some lens extension when you zoom out. The lens doesn't rotate during focussing though. It comes with a pretty useful lens hood that also attachs in reverse on the front for storage.

    The only thing I'd replace this lens for is the 12-24mm lens, but then I'd need another lens to go 24-70mm or just stick with primes. For right now though, it's serving very well.

    reviewed October 20th, 2005
  • 8 out of 10 points and recommended by Coner Manika (1 reviews)
    Excellent 'walk around' lens, sharpness great, low distortion
    Vignetting quite a problem

    This a a great lens that I use constantly for a variety of purposes. It's not quite wide enough to be the 'perfect' lens, but it does a very good job.

    The zoom ring is well dampened. The focus ring has the annoying quality of not have an 'end point,' but it does have the right speed feel to it.

    The lens, as the review mentions is very compact and light-weight.

    My biggest problem with the lens is the vignetting that occurs at anything less than f/5.6. This is not a huge problem as Adobe Camera Raw (and apparently DxO) can take care of this without much issue. Nonetheless, it's an annoying fact and certainly the weakness of the lens.

    Great lens, just watch the vignetting.

    reviewed October 19th, 2005 (purchased for $300)