7 out of 10 points and recommendedCompact for travel, VRVignetting at 105 mm Distortion at 18 mmm
I waited forever to choose a lens other than the kit to buy a D80, thinking I did not want a slow, variable aperture lens, then gave up and preordered the D90 with the kit lens.reviewed November 6th, 2008 (purchased for $300)
I am pleasantly surprised with the kit lens + VR combo.
After using Canon PowerShot and comparing with my film SLR experience (Olympus OM's + mostly prime lenses) I have only 2 minor complaints about the 18-105: Noticeable vignetting wide open at 105 mm and noticeable distortion at 18 mm. I know software can correct both but this is still an extra step. I know tests show CA wide open but the D90 processes this out in software. Overall this is a practical range for travel, I am planning to add a 70-300 VR and a longish fast Macro to round up the range. The fast tele lenses I really drool over are $4,000 - 8,000. You can't always get what you want…
Recommended, but I would not go buy this lens to add to a range if it did not come as a kit