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I have a nikon 16-85 lens. The reviews say it is one of the sharpest lenses in nikons line. I am using it on a D200 and have found my 16-85 to be the least sharp of all my lenses. Any ideas as to what would cause this?

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I have access to a database for a major photo publication and took a look at their test results. According to their results, it's a very good lens. You may have knocked an element out of alignment, have dirt or fungus on the lens. In any situation, it would be worth having a qualified tech check and clean the lens.

Posted on Jul 15, 2009

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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Charles, I can save you the effort. The D200 lacks the menu item I suggested and will not show any symbols in the viewfinder or LCD to indicate which VR setting you have the lens set to.

But Ken Rockwell's guide to the lens has a big clue: VR takes a moment to stabilise, so you ideally need to half press the shutter release and wait a second or so before firing the shutter.

I don't want to plagiarise his excellent article, so instead suggest that you click here to read what the man has to say himself. He discusses the benefits of your lenses VR early in the article, but you may want to skip right down the page to the heading, "How to use the VR".

Ken has also created an excellent alternative D200 users' guide, click here.

Good luck, and please take a moment to rate my reply.

P.S. If the hotlinks don't work then the 18-200 lens review is at:-

http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/18200/18200-vr.htm

and the D200 guide is at:-

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What is the sharpest f number for the 16-85 dx nikon?


That depends on, among other things, the focal length, the focused distance, and the individual lens. In general, lenses are sharpest when stopped down two or three stops. Your lens is not identical to anyone else's, and thus results may differ.

Your best bet is to test it yourself and see where you get the best sharpness for your photographs.

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If this is your first digital SLR then you might be best buying an entry level body with a multi-purpose zoom lens such as the Nikon D40. There is a lot to learn.
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My first question would be what lens are you using - some lenses have auto stability features - please post lens make, type, model number and when you purchased it.

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