Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 G AF-S DX ED

Check availablity: eBay.

This lens was introduced in July 2005 as an entry level “kit” lens for the Nikon D50. Nikon even let you choose between a black and silver version. In 2006, it was replaced by an almost identical lens. The 2006 version have a roman numeral “II"” immediately after the “G” in the identification plate on the lens.

This is a so-called “normal“ zoom, which means that it covers the zoom range you are most likely to use. If you are like most photographers, a “normal“ zoom is the lens you will be using most of time, so you need to weight your options carefully.

Optically this is not a bad lens. Sharpness is good. Distortions are well controlled for such a low-cost zoom. Flare, ghosting and CA is well under control. Wide open, there is some vignetting. It has a very handy minimum focus distance of 28 cm with a 1:3.2 magnification (so if this had been a Sigma, it would have been called at “macro” lens). It is small and light-weight.

In terms of build quality, it has a plastic mount and a plastic feel. It has no distance scale. The focus motor is of the slow and noisy gear type.

In my opinion, the small maximum aperture (f/3.5 at the wide end, f/5.6 at the tele end) and the small (3.1x) zoom range limits its overall usefulness. Unless your budget is really tight, I recommend going for more expensive, but also more useful alternatives such as the Tamron 17-50 mm f/2.8 (larger maximum aperture) or Nikon 16-85 mm f/3.5-5.6 VR (more useful zoom range and VR).

Rating: Ed: -, User: - (normalized, 0=useless, 50=average, 100=excellent).

Mount: Nikon F.
Format: DX/APS-C.
Aperture range: f/3.5-5.6 to f/38.
Optical zoom: 3.1x.
Close focus distance (CFD): 28 cm / 0.92 ft (from sensor plane).
CFD magnification: 1:3.2 / 0.31X.
Focus: AF (built-in, gear-type).
Groups/elements: 5/7.
Filter diameter: 52 mm.
L x D, W: 74 x 69 mm, 210 g.
IR: No hotspot reports.
Approximate street price: USD 110 (new, w/o tax).
Production: 2005-2006, replaced by: Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 G AF-S DX VR.

[Image of Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 G AF-S DX ED.]

Company Profile

Key info

Established: 1917
HQ: Tokyo, Japan
Web: Global, EU, US, man

Nikon is a multinational corporation headquartered in Tokyo, Japan specializing in optics and imaging. Its products include cameras, lenses, flash units, scanners, binoculars, microscopes, measurement instruments, and steppers (used in semiconductor fabrication). The company was founded in 1917 as Nippon Kōgaku Kōgyō Kabushikigaisha (Japan Optical Industries Corporation), and renamed Nikon Corporation, after its cameras, in 1988. Nikon Corporation is one of the companies of the Mitsubishi Group.

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