Nikon AF 80-200mm f / 2.8D ED MKIII review

For the opportunity to review the legendary Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D MKIII many thanks to Dmitry. Dmitry is engaged in the sale of excellent professional lenses, his catalog can be viewed here.

Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D MKIII review

Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D MKIII review

TTX Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D (MKIII)
Focal length: 80-200mm, 2.5X zoom
Diaphragm: F / 2.8-f / 22
Number of aperture blades: 9 pieces
The weight: 1.3kg
Optical design: 16 elements in 11 groups, with 3 ED elements and DIH enlightenment
MDF: 1.5m (1: 5.9 magnification), the lens has a system CRC
Front Filter Diameter: 77 mm

Optically, the third version of the Nikon AF 80-200 / 2.8 lens is no different from the first two versions of MKI and MKII.

A complete and accurate list of all Nikkon Nikkor class 70(80)-(180)200/2.8 autofocus professional lenses:

  1. Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8 (MKI) - November 1987 to September 1992, 16 elements in 11 groups (with 3 ED elements)
  2. Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D (MKII) - from September 1992 to 1997, 16 elements in 11 groups (with 3 ED elements)
  3. Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D (MKIII) - January 1997 to present, 16 elements in 11 groups (with 3 ED elements)
  4. Nikon ED AF-S Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D Silent Wave Motor (MKIV, AF-S) - from December 1998 to 2003, 18 elements in 14 groups (with 5 ED elements). There are two colors: black and gray.
  5. Nikon ED AF-S VR-Nikkor 70-200mm 1: 2.8G Vibration Reduction SWM IF (MKV, VRI) from February 2003 to January 2009, 21 elements in 15 groups (with 5 ED elements). There are two colors: black and gray.
  6. Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm 1: 2.8GII ED N VR Nano Crystal Coat SWM IF (MKVI, VRII) - July 2009 to present, 21 elements in 16 groups (with 7 ED elements).
  7. Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm 1: 2.8E FL ED N VR Nano Crystal Coat (MKVII, E) - from October 2016 to the present, 22 elements in 18 groups (6 ED, 1 FL, 1 HRI element). There is a rare subversion Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm 1: 2.8E FL ED N VR Nano Crystal Coat Nikon 100th Anniversary (100th Anniversary) - April 2017 to present, features a metallic gray finish with the Nikon 100th Anniversary logo).
  8. Nikon Nikkor Z 70-200mm 1: 2.8 VR S (MK VIII, Z, S-series) - from January 2020 to the present day. Nikon Z mirrorless version, 21 elements in 18 groups (6 ED, 2 ASP, 1 FL, 1 SR)
  9. Nikon Nikkor Z 70-180mm 1: 2.8 (MK IX,Z) - from June 2023 to the present day. Version for Nikon Z mirrorless cameras, 19 elements in 14 groups (5 ED, 3 ASP, 1 SUPER ED), diagram from Tamron 70-180mm F / 2.8 Di III VXD Model A056

Old versions Nikon ED 80-200mm f / 2.8D AF Nikkor MKII and MKI are basically different from the Nikon ED 80-200mm f / 2.8D AF Nikkor MKIII using the zoom method and type of enlightenment. The first two versions are often called 'single-ring', since one ring on the lens is responsible for zooming and focusing, and the zoom itself is performed using the piston method. The MKIII version is called 'two roundabout', since there are already two rings on the lens, the first is responsible for zooming, and the second for focusing, while the lens has a classic modern zoom method. All three versions of MKI, II, III have the same optical design, so the image quality of these lenses is quite similar to each other. There are even rumors that the first versions of MKI, MKII are even sharper after the third, I don't believe in that.

Optical design Nikon ED 80-200mm f / 2.8D AF Nikkor (MKIII)

Optical design Nikon ED 80-200mm f / 2.8D AF Nikkor (MKIII)

An interesting point is that until now (at the beginning of 2013) only 2 versions of the lens of the 70 (80) -200 / 2.8 class are produced - this is a nanocrystalline Nikon ED 70-200mm f / 2.8GII AF-S VR N Nikkor (IF) and this old Nikon ED 80-200mm f / 2.8D AF Nikkor (MKIII). The MK3 version has been very, very successful.

Lens Enlightenment Nikon ED AF Review Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D MKIII

Lens enlightenment Nikon ED AF review Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D MKIII and aperture view

Nikon AF 80-200mm f / 2.8D ED MKIII made in japanhave been producing the lens since 1996. The build quality is at a very high level, almost the entire lens barrel is made of metal alloy. The zoom and focus rings are rubberized. The lens itself is quite heavy for use on amateur cameras, as it weighs much more than the amateur camera itself. But the appearance of the lens is very 'serious'. The lens uses 'professional' 77 mm filters. On my Nikon D700 sits and looks very nice. Managing the lens is very convenient.


Lens does not have internal focus. When focusing, the front lens rides and rotates freely in the lens barrel, but the trunk of the lens does not extendas the lenses are inside the frame. There will be no problems with using filters. Also, while zooming and focusing, the rear lens remains stationary, which reduces the 'vacuum cleaner' effect.

The lens has focus stop. The limiter can switch the lens to one of the modes Full / limit. In 'Full' mode, the lens can focus from infinity to 1.5m. In 'Limit' mode, the lens can focus either from infinity to 2.8m, or from 2.8m to 1.5m. Of course, the lens has a focus scale in meters and feet, as well as an infrared shift indicator for 80mm.

My shabby copy of Nikon 80-200 2.8 MK3

My shabby copy of Nikon 80-200 2.8 MK3

There is a switch on the lens focus mode 'M / A'. In M mode, only manual focus is available. The manual focus ring rotates on 90 degrees in 'Full' mode, and 60 degrees in 'Limit' mode. Manual focusing is quite easy and pleasant. In focus mode 'A', only auto focus is available and the focus ring remains locked. The focus mode switch has a lock button. This button is very inconvenient to use, and the switch itself, which is made in the form of a ring, is inconvenient enough to rotate to switch the focusing mode. The focus mode switch is the only thing I didn't like about this lens.

The autofocus of the lens is fast. When using the 'Limit' mode, little time is spent running the lenses from infinity to the limiting value. In the 'Full' mode, the lenses take much longer to run. Of course, due to the camera's screwdriver being used to focus, the lens emits quite loud noise with auto focus.

Lens mount view Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D MKIII review

View of the Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D MKIII lens from the bayonet side

It's important: auto focus with this lens is available only when using him on cameras with built-in motor focusing.

Exact list Nikon DSLR cameras with a built-in focus motor, on which this lens will focus automatically:

Exact list Nikon DSLR cameras without a built-in focus motor, on which this lens will not focus automatically:

Only auto focus and sound confirmation of focus will not work with these cameras, all other important functions, such as automatic exposure metering and automatic iris control, will work well.

You will find a lot of useful information on the types of cameras and lenses Nikon here.

Important: the lens has an aperture control ring. In order for the lens to start working normally on modern CZKs, you need to set the f / 22 value on the lens and snap a special switch near the aperture control ring. After such a manipulation, the aperture can be controlled from the camera, in more detail in the section on Non-G type lens.

The lens has tripod socket with foot. The socket cannot be removed. The socket foot can rotate around the lens and be fixed using a special clip.

Sample photos on Nikon AF 80-200mm f / 2.8D ED MKIII and full frame

All photo without processing. All photos in the gallery below were shot with a Nikon ED 80-200mm f / 2.8D AF Nikkor (MKIII) lens and camera Nikon D700, RAW, NL image management mode, converted to JPEG using VinewNX 2 with automatic detection BB (Calculate Automaticaly), reduced size to 3MP and imprinted data from EXIF.

Sample photos on Nikon AF 80-200mm f / 2.8D ED MKIII and cropped camera

All photo without processing. All photos in the gallery below were shot with a Nikon ED 80-200mm f / 2.8D AF Nikkor (MKIII) lens and camera Nikon D80, RAW, PO picture management mode, converted to JPEG using VinewNX 2 with automatic detection BB (Calculate Automaticaly), reduced size to 3MP and imprinted data from EXIF.

When using the lens on Nikon DX cameras EGF will be 120-300mm. Even on crop, this lens remains just a gorgeous tool in the hands of the photographer. The lens is well suited for portraiture, wedding photography, for wildlife photography, sports.

Personal experience

There are no significant complaints to the Nikon AF 80-200mm f / 2.8D ED MKIII, it is really a worthwhile lens, a good budget option to replace the expensive 70-200 / 2.8GII N VR. Many people write that the disadvantage of the lens is its weight, for me it is rather a virtue. Great weight helps take pictures with hand without grease. Of course, on F / 2.8 it’s not as sharp as a razor, but picture quality is really high. The lens may still use a lens hood HB-7, with a lens hood, the lens looks generally irresistible. Nikon 80-200 F2.8 MK3 can be considered one of the three lenses of a professional photographer, who should be in a case.

You can see the prices for the lens in popular stores. at this link, or in the price block below:

Comments on this post do not require registration. Anyone can leave a comment. Many different photographic equipment can be found on AliExpress.

Lens view Overview Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D MKIII on Nikon D80

Lens view Overview Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D MKIII on Nikon D80


Nikon ED AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1: 2.8D (MKIII) - great professional lens. Good value for money. I recommend.

Material prepared Arkady Shapoval. Training/Consultations | Youtube | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Telegram

Add a comment:



Comments: 364, on the topic: Review of the Nikon AF 80-200mm f / 2.8D ED MKIII

  • Artem

    Hello, now I own 70-300 af-s 4.5-5.6 after 200mm soapy. Does it make sense to replace it with 80-200 mk iii?

    • B. R. P.

      What more sense. And the sharpness and the drawing will not match any 70-300. There will be only 300mm.)

      • Artem

        Not scary. D800 allows you to crop. All the same, from 200 to 300 is not a working segment

    • Arkady Shapoval

      still lose the stub

  • Sergei

    I meet different photos of the mount, some have one black screw, others are all steel. What does it depend on?

    • B. R. P.

      From the year of issue. The black screw was used as a marker.

      • Sergei

        And h, or until what year did you stop using it? Don't tell me by accident

        • B. R. P.

          Unfortunately, I do not have such information.

  • Alfredo Aguilar

    Hola;yo tengo este lente desde hace 17 años y sigue funcionando perfectamente,claro està con su mantenimiento obligatrio una vez al año,yo lo uso para fotografiar basquetbal,y su apertura en f/2.8 en todo el rango de la lente,ofrece un BOKEH excepcional, tambien para la vida salvaje, es unico para captar la vida animal, sin hacerse uno muy alcance de la vista de aves o fiera.
    Amo este lente,es y sera por siempre la joya de la corona de NIKON y de mi equipo fotògrafico es simplemente sorprendente y con 2 libras de peso,¡¡¡UNICO!!!

    • Jury

      una gran cantidad de amantes de Nikon estarán de acuerdo contigo

    • Mikhail V.Ch.

      Translation from Spanish - Hello; I have had this lens for 17 years and it still works great, of course with the obligatory service once a year, I use it for basketball photography, and its f / 2.8 aperture in everything range. lens, provides exceptional bokeh, including for wildlife, it is very convenient. unique for capturing animal life without getting caught in the eye of birds or wildlife.
      I love this lens, it is and will forever be the jewel in the crown of NIKON and my photography gear. It is simply amazing and weighs 2 lbs, UNIQUE!!!

      many Nikon lovers will agree with you

  • Volodimir

    Svіtlini enchanting, everything was worthy, absolutely.

  • Skiferok

    Bought version 3. I see that it has not been taken apart, in a new condition. At 200mm there is such an impression that everything is out of focus, I turn the dirk up to 5, a little better, but it’s still not sharp. This is all so 80-200 mk 1-3. The specifics of these 3 versions. I shoot on the d700.

    • Viktre

      No, this is not specific to all three versions.

      • Skiferok

        I manually aim, a green dot is lit in the viewfinder that is in focus. But the photos are not sharp.

        • B. R. P.

          It happens. Point is not always accurate

    • B. R. P.

      Maybe they didn't understand. But they could, for example, hit and knock down the alignment.

      • Skiferok

        There are no impact marks.

  • Skiferok

    I did a test, shot a landscape at infinity. In autofocus, the landscape is not sharp, I switched the mode to manual. I made it to infinity, but not to the end, and the landscape is sharp. How to fix who repaired such 80-200 mk3?

  • Skiferok

    There is a shaft of the front lens block, does everyone have it?

    • B. R. P.

      It shouldn't be like that. Possible reasons are listed above.

  • Skiferok

    Maybe this is due to the wear of the front lens block, which travels back and forth when focusing.

  • Michael

    Hello everybody! I got this MKIII the other day. Unfortunately, not without annoyance - a marriage was immediately discovered. The thing is the MA focus mode switching ring, it goes almost freely back and forth, it is not firmly fixed in one of the positions - it is impossible to work with this nuance, you just touch it with your hand, it shifts, twisting in the opposite direction. Probably, the matter is in the metal button, which is on this ring. In my copy, it seemed to “squat down” down, that is, in a position as already clamped, but if you pull it up with your fingernail, it rises, but then immediately limply falls down to its previous position. And, as I understand it, by default it should be initially firmly “standing” and, in fact, by pressing down with a finger of the hand, give a move to the regime ring itself. I am attaching a photo of what I am talking about (screenshot from the Internet, “healthy copy” - the arrow shows the button I am talking about)
    Has anyone encountered this problem, did you manage to fix it? Or is it better to issue a return before the warranty has expired?

    • B. R. P.

      Make a return, what is there to think. What kind of warranty is this for a product known to be faulty?

      • Michael

        It's just that it's already... THE FOURTH in a row 80-200 2.8, which I've been trying to get for half a year))) something. In fact, this instance is very good, and most importantly, all his lenses are ideal. That's why I think, whether to bring it to mind, if it would be real. And you never know what else the next 80-200 will come with ... I’ll return this one to the office, and the next such Nikkor will come from another seller with, say, bad lenses and, moreover, without a guarantee.

        • B. R. P.

          How many times have they told the world ... but things are still there ... You can’t take a used one remotely, only from your hands, with a check, even if it’s more expensive. It is possible and real to bring to mind, no one will tell you for sure in absentia. How much will this repair cost? If you climb inside yourself - most likely you won’t fix it, but under the “guarantee” they won’t take it back. That's what this "scheme" is designed for.

          • Michael

            B.R.P., the fact of the matter is that I took ALL of those mentioned defective previous 80-200 2.8 exclusively either through our Russian Avito-delivery service (mainly by Russian Post, occasionally Boxberry), or by the same 14- day guarantee. Optics came to me, I checked it right there at the point of issue (if Avito-delivery) or at home (if guaranteed). In principle, I know how to check, I look at the equipment carefully - and in the end I processed the return to the sender back of all those zumoNikkors right on the spot immediately in front of the delivery service employees. I wouldn’t take such a lens remotely without the possibility of checking and returning - there are a lot of offers for it, it’s not an exclusive rare product that is extremely difficult to find and if you find it on the Internet, you can only buy at random if you really need it. Avito-delivery is a really cool thing, I ordered all sorts of things with it over the past few years and absolutely everything came to me (also by Mail or Boxberry). The price tags purchased were both large and small, among all the “snatched out” there was especially a lot of photographic equipment, as well as, for example, a large amount of musical equipment (complex equipment and musical instruments). He also sold some of his own things on Avito, including expensive ones, including optics, sent through the Avito delivery service. But still, yes, you should be aware that there are risks in using this service: there are a sufficient number of forums where incidents related to this Avito delivery are discussed in a dramatic form, and there, it happens, extremely annoying and offensive misunderstandings are discussed. Therefore, personally, recently, somehow, I somehow decided to reduce my ardor for this service (if we are talking about something expensive), leaving, in fact, only very few options at my discretion: such as my current case with a warranty by check, for example ... SUCH is the share of those who live in the outback: even the ability to purchase the necessary things in such a way as Avito-delivery is already a big salvation for us from boiling in our own juice with all the restrictions. Here, if you want to live richly and interestingly according to your aspirations and plans, you just have to put up with it, look for loopholes like Avito-delivery and guarantees. And you will also have to take real risks from time to time, which, by the way, I confess, I also had to do more than once when I was looking for something important and rare. At the same time, always being aware of WHAT (!) can come to me and that it may have to be repaired and brought to mind, which I periodically did, contacting good service centers and looking for craftsmen, sometimes sending a thing to another region . Fortunately, however, a lot of good in terms of service is located in my city of Tomsk: what they just didn’t repair and from what state they didn’t raise me ... As they say, who doesn’t risk, he doesn’t drink - this applies to us, provincial natives, in the most fair way.

            • Viktre

              Regarding the latter, there is nothing to envy there, if considered in the complex))

              Well, used photographic equipment almost always has certain problems. Rarely is everything perfect.

    • Dmitry Kostin

      Mikhail, this is not a marriage, but (IMHO) one of the inherent flaws of this particular version 80-200 / 2.8
      I came across such on Avito.
      Try to return the seller back and get your money back.
      Of the Avito sellers living in Moscow, and who have been engaged in Nikon optics for a long time, I can recommend Yuri (he has 345 positive reviews, the address on Avito: Moscow, Academician Kapitsa St., 34/121), for whom I bought 2 pieces 35-70 and one 28- 105.
      Now he has in stock:
      Nikon AF 80-200mm f/2.8 ED MK2 - 22000
      Nikon 80-200mm f 2 8D mk3 - 28 000
      Nikon AF-S 80-200 f2.8 MK4 - 38
      All are in good condition.

      • Mikhail Tomsky

        Oh, Dmitry, hello! Thank you very much for such contacts, like me is very, very important! The only thing, only, oh, I read your message only at the moment when I had already completed the purchase (also under warranty) of another 80-200 f2.8 in another store (this will be the fifth one in attempts to find a distinct copy). Otherwise, indeed, I would certainly turn to the person you are talking about. In any case, I will now keep him in mind, if anything, I will write to him. I make sure to keep my contacts.

        PS Well, the copy I am writing about here, I have already issued for a return. And, since there is an opinion here that such a defect, mentioned by me, may not even be a breakdown, but simply an “inherent feature” of a particular instance - I don’t regret at all that I returned it ... By the way, from Nikon’s official service to my request, on the contrary , they answered that this is most likely a breakdown from a force impact and you can try to repair it. Who knows in general ... I hope everything said here will be useful to other lens experts.

        • Viktre

          The person Dmitry is talking about left an ambiguous impression.

          I was interested in the 28-105 lens. I say, drop something shot at a wide angle, on an open, from a full-frame device (the spread of these lenses is quite large in quality)

          He writes “I am not a photographer” (the spelling is preserved), “look at the edges on the net.”

          I say “you know, it’s YOUR copy that interests you”

          Ok, writes, let's send it to the mail. Throws off ... With d70 (!) A test chart shot at 44mm (!) One frame at f / 4, the second (for some reason) at f / 13. And that's it.

          I realized that the person did not at all stupefy what it was about, and did not bother him anymore.

          • Dmitry Kostin

            Victor, he really is far from photography.
            I bought from him live, next to his metro station.
            I have no complaints about the lenses sold to me.
            In terms of communication, he is not particularly talkative. Doesn't try to screw something up.
            When selling, he can offer several different options to choose from, which he sometimes takes with him. I had this with one of the 35-70.
            The number of positive reviews speaks for itself.
            Here he is in the photo:

            • Dmitry Kostin

              “When selling, he can offer several different options to choose from, which he sometimes takes with him. I had this with one of the 35-70s.”
              Those. expect to see one lens, like a 35-70. And he brings them 2 pieces or 3 pieces of the 35-70 D version and, for example, one earlier. By choice.
              And everything will be in good condition, exactly as in the ad.

            • Viktre

              Live - maybe you can take it, why not.
              I would not order from him remotely if it is important to get information about the main properties of the product before buying it.

  • Michael

    In this screenshot from the Internet, the button is working properly, it stands as it should.

  • Kostiantyn

    Greetings to all members of this wonderful site. I have a question, who faced the problem of this version 3 lens, the essence of the problem is that in manual mode, when FOCUSING in the region of 11 m, jamming occurs and this is when from infinity To the minimum distance. When the movement goes from the minimum distance To infinity this obstacle does not arise. What could be the problem, who will tell you. Autofocus works without problems. I have experience repairing lenses, but I haven’t come across this model and haven’t taken it apart yet.

  • Sergei

    Hello everyone, I plan to buy this lens for a Nikon D7500 cropped camera, but I can’t decide which version is better to buy MKIII or MKIV, mainly for portraits it’s still possible to report indoors. In terms of sharpness and focusing accuracy, and of course bokeh)) which one will be better?

    • Arkady Shapoval

      MK4 is better, but it is problematic

    • B. R. P.

      Zoom bokeh? ))))))))))

      • Rodion

        Well hello, this is 80-200 / 2.8. Zoom bokeh, yes, and what else!

        • Dmitry Kostin

          Rodion, and in the second version (trombone), the drawing is not much worse?
          (sharpness is not much of a concern)

          • Rodion

            I only have MK2 and was on the test. Quite pleasant. But Sonnar 180/2.8 is still my favorite.

            • Dmitry Kostin

              Understood thanks!

      • Neustrdm

        His bokeh is excellent, even on covered ones.

  • Ivan

    Having brought such a second-hand lens, the one that struck the back of my mind the most ... Vіn is great and looks solid. Went up to the Nikon D7100 and it turned out that it didn’t focus on it ... The camera scanned the lens, showing the aperture and that’s all ... Went up to the Nikon D5100 and everything was ordered, why I don’t know and can’t figure it out. If, when pressed on the shutter button, the camera does not react in any way, then I lower the lens to the bottom and everything starts working normally. It’s okay with the lens, it’s not like that, about not getting ahead of the front sack.
    The picture is small for a garn.

    • Dmitry

      Possibly, the filthy contact at the bayonet. Clean contacts with alcohol.

  • Paul

    Hello, please tell me who has had experience with how this 80-200 2.8 µ3 lens has focusing speed compared to the Sigma 70-200 mm F2.8 APO II EX DG MACRO HSM. Among other things, I need to film my daughter’s dance performances, what do you recommend? (camera d600)

Add a comment

Copyright © Blog author - Photographer in Kiev Arkady Shapoval. 2009-2023

English-version of this article

Versión en español de este artículo