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I am about to buy a Nikon D3400 DSLR. The salesman said the 18-55mm lens no longer has the Vibration Reduction (VR) function that a similar lens on my D3000 has. He said it is not so crucial on the D3400 because the processor takes care of much of this function.

Should I accept this advice or buy a Body Only D3400 and get a better lens? I am an amateur, but often take photos of people running at me to hit me or grab the camera, or running away.

  • It is always worth just keeping in mind that there were many, many perfectly good photos taken before image stabilisation was invented. – osullic Sep 22 '17 at 10:20
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    @osullic There have also been many, many shady camera dealers pull the lens switcharoonie on unsuspecting customers. – Michael C Sep 22 '17 at 13:00
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    @Michael yes indeed. I suppose my point is just that VR (or IS or whatever), while a valuable feature, is not the be-all and end-all. But yes, as long as the buyer knows the facts and is not being mislead. – osullic Sep 22 '17 at 13:16
  • @osullic Or paying for something and not getting it. – Michael C Sep 22 '17 at 13:26
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    If you already have an 18-55mm with VR, why get another 18-55mm lens? – user50888 Sep 22 '17 at 15:51
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In Australia where your profile indicates you are located, Nikon only offers the D3400 in kits with an 18-55mm lens with the AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G (non-VR version). What the salesman is telling you seems to be true, at least with regard to the lens, in Australia. The bit about VR no longer being needed "because the processor takes care of much of this function..." may be a bit more of a stretch. If Nikon has modified the way their camera bodies, particularly the D3400, process images to reduce blur they sure haven't touted it in any of their promotional materials.

If, however, one were located in the U.S. your question would have an entirely different answer.

The kit lens included with the Nikon D3400 in the US is the AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR. The 'VR' at the end of the lens' name stands for 'Vibration Reduction'.

The non-VR version of the AF-P 18-55mm is not listed in any official D3400 kits at the Nikon U.S. website. The non-VR versions of the Nikon AF-P lenses are marketed by Nikon in the U.S. to be used with older bodies not capable of turning VR on/off via a menu selection since the AF-P VR lenses do not have an on/off switch of VR on the lens¹. The D3400, at least the version of the D3400 sold in the U.S., has the ability to control the VR on AF-P lenses via a menu item.

If you were in the U.S. and a salesman is trying to sell you an 18-55mm lens with a D3400 that is not a VR lens he is either:

  • Ignorant of what he is selling

OR

  • Trying to sell you an old (pre-2007) lens or a cheaper non-kit non-VR version of the AF-P 18-55mm with a new camera body, probably for the suggested price of the newer/higher priced lens.

In which case run, don't walk, to the nearest exit of whatever store this salesman works.

¹ Please see Thom Hogan's comments in this revue regarding VR vs. non-VR versions of AF-P lenses.

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  • I feel it should be noted that there is one other possible explanation... simple miscommunication/misunderstanding. – osullic Sep 22 '17 at 10:19
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    @Michael-clark there are two versions of the 18-55 AF-P, one with VR and one without VR. Here's a link to Nikon's page on those lenses. – StephenG Sep 22 '17 at 11:16
  • @StephenG Yes, but Nikon only lists the VR version in their official kit listings at the D3400 link to their U.S. site included in the answer. If the non-VR lens is being sold with the D3400 it is still a swap by the dealer, ostensibly to get the same price for a cheaper lens and then turn around and sell the VR as a white box item. – Michael C Sep 22 '17 at 12:55
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    @michael-clark I've seen the D3400 sold in kits with both versions in the same reputable UK camera stores. – StephenG Sep 22 '17 at 13:19
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    @MichaelClark A few seconds googleing 'Nikon UK'... store.nikon.co.uk/dslr-consumer/d3400-+-af-p-dx-18-55/… It's a big world. – user50888 Sep 22 '17 at 16:07

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