Kicking off my continuing exploration of the “consumer-rated” Series-E lenses by Nikon, I have had the chance to play around with the small 75-150mm zoom for a little while now. What a change…I haven’t shot with a zoom since I last used my now-sold Tokina 80-200 f/2.8 5 months ago! Instead of needing to move back and forth to get composition just right, I now can just zoom in/out and snap (if I so choose). There are good and bad aspects to this style of shooting, but I won’t really get into detail about that here.
Anyways, the 75-150mm focal length range suggests this lens could be suited for portraits, on film/FF sensors at least. On APS-C or smaller, the slow-ish f/3.5 speed gives “okay” depth of field control; getting the signature “pop” on subjects is a little harder to do. After a bit of a walk-around, I feel the 75-150 is better as a general purpose telephoto, especially considering a rather consistent sharpness characteristic. I haven’t looked too closely at my test chart pictures yet, but from what I can see so far, across-the-frame sharpness is just fine even wide open, at all focal lengths. A pleasant surprise, for sure.
Thanks to the mostly plastic construction, the 75-150 isn’t a cumbersome lens in use, even handheld on the tiny NEX-7. At 150mm, camera shake becomes a problem, so good technique is critical. In case it wasn’t obvious from the above picture, this lens uses the push/pull one ring system. The oversized ring controls both zooming (push in to zoom out, pull out to get a wider view) and focus, and it works pretty well here.
I personally have some bias against zooms, due greatly to their limited depth-of-field control with relatively small maximum apertures. That said, I feel this lens is a pretty good performer, doing much better than what the $80 market price may suggest. Full review of this lens may take some time, as I’ll be out of town for a little over a week. Rest assured, the lens will go with me.
Here are just a few shots from that aforementioned walk:
That’s all for this post guys and gals, thanks for dropping by! I’ll keep shooting with this over next week and will be writing the review accordingly (along with other side posts that may need writing!). As always, have a great day!