9 out of 10 points and recommendedNikon knew what they wanted with this lens considering its predecessor and competion (24-70f/2.8)Barrel distortion & vigetting that is easily correctable in software
NOTE: This review is applicable to FX Format!reviewed June 25th, 2011 (purchased for $1,199)
I ruminated for months before deciding to sell my precious 24-70f/2.8 to finance this lens.
You see, I have a need and a passion for the 24-120 focal length, and Nikon's FX offering was the 24-120 f/3.5-5.6...a lens which I owned for a time and found wanting.
So, I researched the web, tried the 24-120f/4 lens in a local store on my D3s and took the photos home and picked them apart.
After a week of ownership I can say that I made the right decision...for ME. That extra 50mm on the long end has made my 24-70 just a pleasant memory.
This lens is SHARP...you'll read about softness and vignetting in the corners wide open, and barrel distortion at 24mm. Yes, it's true...but these flaws can be corrected in software easily. Color and contrast easily rivals my 24-70.
With a camera like the D3s, the f/4 constant aperture is no issue. I shoot at night as I did with the 24-70 f/2.8.
Overall, I believe this lens is a winner. Nikon put the good stuff where it needs to be to become a good compromise on quality, performance AND affordability.
If money is no object, by all means get BOTH the 24-70 AND this 24-120! LOL!!!
Had I been able to keep my 24-70 and get the 24-120 I probably would have. But after a week of using this lens for the type of shooting I do, I have a feeling that the fine 24-70 f/2.8 would have gotten a lot of shelf time...not the place for a superb lens like that to be.
A note on the SLRGear review: It's generally spot-on in my view and one of the first reviews I read prior to purchase. It was quite helpful to me. One minor point: Try as I might, I haven't yet seen the CA that is mentioned...perhaps I haven't hit just the right conditions yet...I rarely shoot wide-open in bright sunlight where this aberration would be found. It's worth noting that the SLRGear review mentions that CA is better-controlled than in the 24-70 f/2.8.