Nikon Z 24-200mm Lens Review

Comparisons with the 24-120mm f/4 VR Nikkor

The Nikon 24-200mm Z lens (left) compared to the 24-120mm f/4 F-mount lens with FTZ adapter.

For me, the real test was not if the 24-200’s performance was on par with my top glass, but instead how it compared to my 24-120mm f/4 VR, which is a competent travel and all-purpose zoom. I set up and made a series of test shots across different apertures at 24, 50, and 120mm with both lenses. Other than some minor differences in light fall-off characteristics and axial CA, I found that the 24-200mm f/4-6.3 matched or exceeded the performance of my trusty 24-120/4. Both lenses showed some edge softness at 24mm wide-open, but at the longer focal lengths, the 24-200mm was decidedly better across the entire frame. This difference in sharpness was especially pronounced at 120mm, where even wide-open, the 24-200mm was sharp in the center and the edges of the frame.

When it came to autofocus speed the 24-200mm beat the 24-120/4 handily:

  • Focus from infinity: 0.28s (vs. 0.06s) 4.7x faster
  • Focus from MFD: 0.61s (vs. 0.23s) 2.65x faster

Conclusions and Recommendations

Nikon’s new 24-200mm f/4-6.3 VR lens for Z-mount mirrorless cameras is an excellent choice for photo enthusiasts who desire a lightweight, all-purpose lens. It’s easy to handle, weighs just over a pound, and delivers sharp images across the zoom range. For many Z shooters, this might be the only lens they need for a majority of photographic subjects and situations. For me, it’s clearly a better option for travel photography than using either my older 24-120/4 VR or a three-lens kit via the Nikon FTZ adapter. When placed in the context of its target market, the Nikon 24-200mm VR Nikkor is a real winner!

Highly Recommended: Check prices on the Nikon 24-200mm VR Z lens here

6 thoughts on “Nikon Z 24-200mm Lens Review”

  1. Thanks much for publishing this test, Jason! One big problem – where to get this lens – at B&H and others marked as “coming” for months now, and as “sold out” at Nikon. Frustrating.

  2. Thanks for the review. I have been contemplating replacing my 24-70mmS and 70-200F lens also and this “all in one” lens fits the bill but…… I have read other reviews that said it was not as sharp as the 24-70mmS lens. You did not say if it was as sharp as th 24-70mmS. You said it was good to very good but never compared it to the replacement lens. One troubling thing about this lens is that is not labelled a “S” lens. I thought “S” line was the pro line for the Z system. Please explain why this is not a “S” lens. Thanks.

  3. The 24-70S is definitely sharper at the wide end. The reason I didn’t make this comparison is because I don’t view the 24-200 as a “fine-art” lens; I view it as an all-around/travel lens. I’m willing to trade-off some corner sharpness for convenience, hence my comparison with the 24-120mm.

  4. I purchased this lens on a whim for my Z7 II. The 28-300 with the FTZ was quite a bundle to carry around all day while traveling. I was just amazed with the performance of this lens. It does equally well on landscapes and wildlife. I may have to bump up the ISO and it’s worth it. Besides, the post processing requires very little work. Definately a great travel lens.

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