Learn the soft spot of your lens, learn how to use your lens! The case of Nikon AF-S 70-200mm f/2.8G ED-IF VR on D800
Do you know what the “soft spot” of a lens is?
If you google it you find odd sentences related to soft spot like: “OMG, my lens has a soft spot! I paid so much for it!” or “ I have multiple soft spots! What can I do?“. Forum guests usually reply “Give your lens back, it is defective!”
Is it really so? What I learned a “soft spot” is and what you find in DxO properly described is the following: “It is common to refer to the “soft spot” of a lens, which paradoxically refers in fact to that range of settings where it produces the sharpest images”
Ah! So, now you also know how good the soft spot of your lens is: nothing related to giving your “defective” lens back. Learn how to use the sharpest settings of your lens. Look at the pictures I shot to the full moon tonight (click it to magnify it in a new window). You clearly see that the soft spot of my Nikon 70-200 VR-II (max. extension) on my D800 is around f/5-6.3 – at f/22 we might have also moon shift as time is a slow 1/8
Keep the goodness of the soft spot in mind when you shoot distant objects with details: birds, moon, foliages… it will make *the* difference!