Best Inexpensive DX Lens for your Nikon – Nikon 55-200mm VR AF-S f/4-5.6G ED


The search for the perfect lens is the one thing I’m certain never ends for a photographer.  Every year there are always new lenses with next generation image stabilization and improved optics with this coating and that.  The trick is finding a great lens that doesn’t force you to take out a reverse mortgage or sell your first-born.  The Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5.6G ED IF AF-S DX VR Nikkor Zoom Lens is the lens that will allow you to stay out of debt, at $249, and keep your children… so you can photograph them with it.

This lens is ideal for sports, wildlife, portraits, and just about anything else you throw at it.  It’s super light which is good and bad for obvious reasons.  You can drop this lens in your bag and travel without feeling like your shoulder is going to get ripped off.  On the negative side the lens is plastic so if you drop it you’ll be back on Amazon buying another one.  Good thing it’s only $249, it won’t seem like you hate your money.

*Don’t pick your camera up by the lens with this lens mounted, you may break the lens off the mount.  (Same as most plastic lenses)

The VR technology is where it’s at for these Nikon lenses, you can shoot without at tripod at 200mm and have a shutter speed as low as 1/30sec without giving up sharpness (read: no blurry photos handheld at 200mm).  This is great for those of you that like to travel light or are just too cool for a tripod.

This lens is sharp.  If you’re looking for a sharp lens with great image quality then this is it.  You won’t be able to see any distortion at any focal length without using some sort of measuring device (you won’t be able to see it with your peepers).  This is really impressive for such a cheap lens, typically zoom lenses of all calibers have noticeable distortion… that’s the trade-off for having such a versatile lens.

What’s in your Camera Bag

I’d recommend carrying this lens with the 50mm f1.8D ($124) and the 12-24mm ($616).  If you’re worried about the gap between 24mm and 50mm then take a look at the $199 Nikon 35mm f1.8 lens.


I really can’t say enough good things about this lens, it puts Nikon’s older more expensive lenses to shame.  If you buy one lens this year then give this lens some serious consideration.

Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5.6G ED IF AF-S DX VR [Vibration Reduction] Nikkor Zoom Lens ($249)

Nikon 50mm f/1.8D AF Nikkor Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras ($124)

Nikon 35mm f/1.8G AF-S DX Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras ($199)

Related Links

Best Macro Lens for your Nikon Camera

Nikon 50mm f1.8D Review

The Most Versatile Camera Tripod

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2 replies on “Best Inexpensive DX Lens for your Nikon – Nikon 55-200mm VR AF-S f/4-5.6G ED”
  1. says: Liz

    I own this lens and I have to say that it is one of my favorite lenses for all the reasons you mention. Plus the bokeh one can get from this lens is great. Good advice!

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