Nikon AF-S 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II £1800, $2100
the go-to telephoto zoom for many pros
Not just a revamp of an older lens, this second edition of Nikon’s world-class 70-200mm VR zoom represents a complete redesign. Its fully weathersealed magnesium alloy build is designed to take the knocks of a busy professional lifestyle and the optical path incorporates no fewer than seven ED elements.
The dual-mode autofocus system gives priority to either automatic or manual focusing, and the VR system features automatic panning detection as well as both normal and active modes. Even so, the design is now seven years old and some of Nikon’s latest developments are absent, such as an electromagnetically controlled diaphragm and a Sport mode for VR. VR is only rated at 3.5 stops, which is a full f-stop less than in the Nikon 200-500mm and 300mm lenses on test.
Autofocus speed is lightningfast and practically snaps into place, enabling you to keep up with the fastest sporting action. Sharpness and contrast are stunning, at any combination of focal length and aperture.