This little bad boy used to be a staple in any good nature phtogs bag. Now it’s become an oldie but a goodie. It was replaced by the 70-200 and again by the 70-200 VRII. However, it still holds its own considering it’s age and price point. With the 70-200 VRII brandishing a price tag of $2,400 the 80-200 almost seams cheap at a mere $1,140. We had a ton of requests coming in for a lightweight tele-zoom that could be used for handheld or run-n-gun nature stuff at a price that wouldn’t eat their entire budget. Alas, Nikon’s 80-200 seemed to fit the requirements just fine. Now there are a few catches to using a still lens for motion picture, most of which can be corrected. In this case, we opted to keep the price as low as possible and simply address the absolute necessities. This meant adding a PL mount for use on the versatile RED camera. Granted, RED does offer a Nikon mount that works great. But the most common customer complaint was that they already had a few PL lenses and couldn’t afford to risk switching the mount in the field. So we opted for just the simple mount conversion. Of course you still have some minor image shift and the focus direction is reversed. But for the price, it’s what you would expect. This lens is not our pride and joy, it was a conversion to make the lens more versatile and keep the entry point low. I estimate a complete rehouse similar to our 11-16mm would cost upwards of $7-10k. Who knows, maybe it’s in the future.
A connoisseur of fine motion picture lenses, Matthew has spent over half his life servicing, refining, selling, manufacturing, and collecting cinema lenses from around the world. Chief Operating Officer of Duclos Lenses and Founder of TheCineLens.com, Matthew has been contributing to the motion picture industry for over 15 years, and to this site for over 5 years. View all posts by Matthew Duclos