"Very good center performance is accompanied by good performance in the DX-corners and decent performance in the FX-corners. Stop down to lift performance in the corners of a full-frame 36MP D800 towards good levels. Flare resistance is not bad and auto-focus is reliable albeit a bit slow.
This all comes in a small and light package that even has weather sealing at the lens-mount. Only the wavy nature of the distortions at 18mm might give those striving for straight lines in their architecture shots some trouble."
The lens was known for some time now, it was first announced back in October 2012, but from June it will be available for sale at $899.95 making it the most expensive lens for the 1 system.
1 NIKKOR 32mm f/1.2 – the fast and portable portrait lens
London, UK, 14 May 2013 Nikon today launches the ultra-fast 1 NIKKOR 32mm f/1.2 lens and brings large-aperture portrait photography to the Nikon 1 system.
With a focal length that’s ideal for portraiture and a compact design, this impressive CX-format lens combines superior image quality with convenience. And, as the first 1 NIKKOR flagship lens to be announced this new lens marks an expanding line-up. . . . read more
"The Nikon AF-S 80-400/4.5-5.6G VR delivers very good optical performance throughout the zoom-range. But with a price at the time of writing of 2600 EUR (incl. 19% VAT) you would expect as much. This resolving-power makes the lens the best performer up to its price point. Combined with effective image stabilization up to 200mm, fast and reliable AF, and a maximum magnification of 1:5.1 in a package that is small and light enough to be carried around all day this is the answer many have been waiting for since Nikon released the predecessor some 13 years ago.
To make it perfectly clear: This lens has clearly better optical performance and better image stabilization than its predecessor or the Sigma 120-400 or the Nikon AF-S 70-200/2.8G VR II when coupled with the TC-20E III. Especially compared to its predecessor which can currently be had for half the price the new zoom is much sharper especially at the long end, has a much faster AF.
What are the downsides?"
Even though this les was released back in the 2007, the DxO answers the big question: How does this lens perform on demanding high-resolution bodies, such as the 36-MPix Nikon D800? The resolution of this lens is impressive, but the huge front element prohibits the usage of filters and it is very prone to flare. . . . read more
“Nikon D800 functions as Nikon’s flagship camera” according to DXO Mark, and it is currently the top camera on their Sensor Scores. The 36mp image sensor is an extremely demanding piece of photography both to the photographer and the lens. The resolution advantage is easily lost when it's not focused properly, or the quality of the lens does not meet the highest standards. Only when using lenses like the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 16-35mm f/4G ED VR, Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G ED and the Nikon 70-200mm f/4G ED VR will get some decent zoom performance wile the best results will only come when using prime lenses like the Carl Zeiss Distagon 15mm f/2.8, Nikon AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.4G and will shine with the new Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM.
"Announced in 2012, the Nikon D800 is the current undisputed king of DxOMark, with results that eclipse every other camera from all other manufacturers. However, with so much resolution on tap, the question is, which lenses should you use to make the best of what you’ve got? The DxOMark labs have tested 61 different lenses on the D800 to bring you an unparalleled resource of which lenses are best and which should be avoided. . . . read more
"After years of unadventurous, unexciting “slow” speed zooms “fast”, high-quality primes are experiencing a comeback thanks to the popularity of full-frame DSLRs and the merging of video capture. The moderately wide 35mm focal length has seen numerous new versions from most lens makers over the last two years or so, including this ultra-high speed offering from Sigma. . . . read more
Nikon UK Press release
London, UK, 05th March 2013: Nikon today announces a new FX-format telephoto zoom lens with broad 80¬–400mm focal range and superior optical design.
A highly anticipated update to Nikon’s immensely popular AF 80–400mm telephoto lens, the new AF-S 80–400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR telephoto zoom lens boasts an improved optical construction that easily meets the demands of today’s D-SLRs.
Well-suited to subjects such as wildlife, landscapes or sports, this lens covers everything from mid- to super-telephoto. It offers superb optical performance in diverse conditions, and Nikon’s Vibration Reduction system allows for up to 4-stop compensation throughout the zoom range, even at 400mm. . . . read more
Zoltan Arva-Toth tests the lens on a Nikon D7000 Dslr body:
"When compared to the superzoom competition, the Nikon 18-300mm lens certainly holds its own. Centre sharpness is generally adequate to good, approaching very good levels at certain zoom settings. The borders and especially the corners tend to be soft but improve upon stopping down (to varying degrees, depending on focal length). Vignetting is fairly well controlled except at 18mm f/3.5, where the corners are approximately 2 stops darker than the centre of the frame, assuming an evenly illuminated scene. Chromatic aberrations and geometric distortions are relatively strong, but both can be . . . read more
Markus Stamm reviews the lens with a Nikon D7000 DX format Dslr camera:
"Nikon has a winner here, the AF-S 85/1.4 performs on a very high level. Sharpness is excellent in the image center from f/2 onwards, border and corners follow only slightly behind wide open, reaching excellent resolution stopped down, too. For a portrait lens, this is a quite rare performance characteristic. For the intended usage, portraiture, a lack of sharpness towards the borders and corners usually would not be an issue, but having the extra sharpness available opens up new creative options. . . . read more
These guides don't come often. Ian has written an extensive introduction and tutorial on the how and what of lens adapters, and has also included a rundown of his favorite lenses:
"These days, there seems to be no shortage of lens adapters available on the market—some good, some not so good. There are a number of reputable manufacturers making adapters, including Adaptimax, Bower, CameraQuest, Fotodiox, Novoflex, Vello, Voigtländer, and others. You can find cheap adapters on places such as eBay, many of which are quite good—but you can also find many adapters that will be inadequate for critical use. . . . read more
Mark tested the lens with a Nikon D4 full-frame Dslr body.
"The lens' sharpness is excellent at most focal lengths and f-stops. Edge sharpness is also commendably good, only requiring stopping-down to f/5.6 to get acceptable results. Distortion is well-controlled, chromatic aberrations are only really conspicuous by their almost complete absence, and the lens exhibits pleasingly rounded bokeh thanks to the 9-blade aperture. All in all, the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/4G ED VR delivers great results throughtout its zoom range. So the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/4G ED VR offers a versatile focal range, fast maximum aperture, well-implemented Vibration Reduction system, fast auto-focus and excellent build quality and weather-proofing. Sure, it's big and heavy, but it does offer a compelling combination of versatility, durability . . . read more
Nasim uses a D800E as a test body:
"As you may already know, the Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G VR II was a disappointment for some photographers, because it suffers from a “lens breathing” optical design, where the focal length of the lens varies depending on subject distance. At close distances, the 70-200mm loses quite a bit of the range, which can be a problem for those of us that like to fill the frame with small objects. The Nikon 70-200mm f/4G VR does not have this problem – I measured its focal length and it was exactly 70-200mm, no matter how close or far I focused. Its optical formula is similar to that of the Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 . . . read more
After Top Gear gets canceled, because of Jeremy's nth remark for verbally abusing minorities/foreigners/the Welch or whatever, I hope we'll see Jezza and Kai doing a Top Photo Gear program together, with explosions, tanks (lots of optics in these nowadays) and even more explosions!
Back to reality now, this time Kai gets his hands on the crème de la crème of 35mm lense$: The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.4G, the Canon EF 35mm f/1.4 L USM, and the underdog that ate them all for breakfast, the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM:
"The Battle of the Bokeh is back and we're looking at some fast 35mm lenses from Canon, Nikon and Sigma with the Canon 35mm 1.4L, Nikon 35mm G AF-S. This time, however, it's up to you to vote, and the video shows you the results of the blind-bokeh test. Which lens has the best bokeh?"
Ivo Freriks tests the lens with a Nikon D800E Dslr Body:
"The resolution of this lens is amazing. On a D800E (on which the performance of the lens comes out very well), we even scored over 3500 line pairs per picture height at maximum aperture at all focal lengths. You do not come across this often. The corners remain behind a bit at f/2.8 (well - 1500 LP/PH is still a very good result) but already after stopping down 2 stops, you get above 4000 LP/PH. This lens draws sharper than many professional fixed focus lenses!" . . . read more
Markus Stamm tests the lens with a Nikon D3X Dslr body:
"The Nikon AF-S 70-200mm f/4 VR is an excellent lens that performs on a very high level. Resolution is generally excellent in the image center and very good at the borders and corners. Distortion is a bit on the high side at the long end of the zoom range, while vignetting and CAs are well controlled. The bokeh is quite smooth. The build quality is excellent, it's a bit annoying though that Nikon does not include the tripod collar with the lens. Thanks to a silent-wave drive the AF is silent and very fast. The new third-generation VR module is impressive and works very well. Which in summary means: a highly recommended lens." . . . read more
Ming Thein mostly uses this lens with the Nikon D800E Dslr body:
"I actually don’t have much to say about resolution and optics: what do you expect? It’s a macro lens. There’s almost zero distortion or field curvature, and nothing funny going on with the focal plane. Sharpness is already excellent at f2.8, though with the D800E you’ll probably have to go to f4 or f5.6 to hit peak resolving power across the frame. Note that diffraction softening will set in by around f13 or so with the D800E; I try not to go past f16 unless I absolutely have no choice. That said, you can get away with f22 on the 12MP FX cameras if you need to.
Something I’ve been asked in the past is why I don’t use the 105/2.8 VR instead for greater working distance; the answer is that for the kind of work I do, the 60 actually holds several advantages. Firstly, I don’t need as many extension tubes to achieve higher magnifications*; secondly, the lens itself has . . . read more
Neither lens was a complete surprise, the 800mm was spotted by some eagle-eyed connoisseurs back at the London Olympics, and the 18-35mm lens saw its picture and spec list posted on the net many days ago. No word from Nikon if the 800mm monster is part of the Nikkor 80 years celebration theme. The lens will come bundled with a 1.25x tele converter, the AF-S Teleconverter TC800-1.25E ED, designed to work exclusively with the new 800mm lens. I wonder why they didn't incorporate the converter into the lens in the first place. Talking about firsts, the usage of 2 fluorite elements in the 800mm lens is one such feat. . . . read more
Thomas reviews the lens with a Nikon D800 Dslr body.
The Nikon 70-200/2.8G VR II delivers very good overall performance throughout the zoom-range with a graceful decline in sharpness/contrast in the corners. But nothing that a little stopping down can't heal. Mount it on a DX-body and it delivers a flawless performance from f4.0 with very high sharpness and contrast at all apertures. Its resolving-power also makes the lens quite a good match for a tele-converter should you need to reach beyond the 200mm focal length. Combined with image stabilization, a fast and reliable AF, and a large constant f2.8 aperture that can cut exposure times in half for fast moving action shots or deliver shallower depth of field effects, a robust body, and weather-sealing this lens is the tool of choice for the pros. . . . read more
No word by Nikon on commemorative-or any, lenses to be released in 2013, just 'promotions and other forms of communication'. For the history, among the first lenses was the pictured R-Aero-Nikkor 50mm f/5.6 lens used by the Imperial Japanese Army Air Service during the Second World War. Understandable a very rare lens, since most of the reconnaissance planes carrying it were shot down or destroyed on the ground.
Nikon Press Release
TOKYO - Nikon Corporation celebrates the 80th anniversary of the launch of its NIKKOR photographic lenses this year
In commemoration of NIKKOR's 80th anniversary, Nikon hopes to strengthen and increase awareness of the historic and . . . read more
Kai W chooses the Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM lens as a showcase for the 85mm necessity. Coming up: 5 reasons why you need a pinhole lens.
"Carrying on from "5 reasons you need a 50mm lens" and "5 reasons why you need a 35mm lens", we are giving you 5 reasons why you need a bokehlicioius 85mm lens!"
Professional photographer Peter West Carey tested this lens with a Nikon D800E body. Lots of gorgeous full size EXIF-ed sample photos inside:
The lens is a joy to use and the results, to me, are stunning. It has me seriously thinking of adopting a Nikon camera and this lens in the future. It was very useful both in Utah when I had to get a little closer, without getting physically closer, at Mesa Arch. It was also helpful when shooting from a helicopter over Hawaii, The Big Island as the blades and skids started to show as I could zoom in just a little and make it work. If I had a Nikon camera body, I would already own this lens and it will be the first Nikon lens I ever buy. It is an excellent lens. . . . read more
This is a rather interesting review, the lens is tested with the FT-1 adapter on a Nikon 1 V1 body, and that transforms the Micro-Nikkor 40mm to something of a short tele 108mm macro lens:
"The Nikon AF-S DX 40mm f/2.8 G offers excellent resolution in the image center straight from the maximum aperture. The borders and corners struggle a bit at large aperture settings, but stopped down reach very good resolution. Since the lens is designed for a larger sensor, distortion and vignetting are no issues on Nikon 1 cameras. CAs are a bit pronounced at small apertures, but can easily be taken care of in post processing. . . . read more
"With an Overall DxO Mark Lens Metric Score of 35 the Nikon AF-S 85mm f/1.8G is the best 85mm lens in the DxOMark database and well exceeds the average DxO Mark Overall Score of 28 for this type of lens. Costing $500, a whooping $1149 cheaper than the Nikon f/1.4 version at $1649, it also represents excellent value for money if you can live without the f/1.4 maximum aperture. In terms of sharpness the Nikon AF-S 85 mm f/1.8G finishes 3rd on the podium out of all 14 85mm primes lenses we’ve tested and again surpasses the average score for this category of 15 P-Mpix. Its best characteristic is homogenous sharpness with no edge softness even with the aperture wide open at f/1.8. It . . . read more
"The 16-85mm acquits itself well in the lab and is a joy to use. The VR system is superb and image quality is impressively sharp, even at the largest apertures, making the f/5.6 at 85mm all the more usable. Contrast is excellent and the lens gives superb results in practically any shooting conditions.
What’s good – Class-leading zoom range, ring-type autofocus, dual-mode stabilisation and superb image quality.
What’s bad – The maximum aperture is f/5.6 at the long end of the zoom range, and only f/5 at about 50mm. . . . read more
"As this is one of Nikon's top of the range lenses, it comes with a top of the line price tag of around £1300. As the sharpness levels are so high in the centre, this may be justified if your usage suits the characteristics of this lens. What sets this lens apart is its weather-sealed magnesium construction, which helps to justify the price.
Sigma do offer an alternative in their 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM lens, which retails for around £750. The performance of this lens is comparable in many ways to the Nikon optic, so may make a worthy alternative. . . . read more
"For a non-zoom lens of 50 mm (since generations already the 'standard' focal length and therefore very popular), this Nikkor is firmly priced of course. Nevertheless, with its extreme sensitivity, it also lives up to that price. The mechanical and optical qualities are very high. The resolution is exceptionally good, and with the exception of some vignetting at large apertures, there are actually no lens errors. The lens is large enough for you to wrap your hand around when shooting. On our wish list for the Nikon 50 mm 1.4G is only vibration reduction. . . . read more
"The 70-200mm ƒ/4G VR offered some excellent results on the sub-frame D7000, producing tack-sharp results when used wide open at ƒ/4, at every focal length save 200mm. At 200mm the lens has a harder time keeping up, producing moderately sharp images at ƒ/4; stopping down to ƒ/5.6 however, will get back to tack-sharp.
The vast resolution of the D800e's 36-megapixel sensor wasn't as kind to the 70-200mm ƒ/4. It provided moderately . . . read more
A few notes: Ken tested this lens mounted on a Nikon D800E. Also, it is rather sad to see the 'Made in Japan" engraving go away from even high end Nikkor lenses, it kinda takes away some of the magic.
"I don't bother with f/2.8 tele zooms when shooting digital. I use them only when shooting 35mm, otherwise, they're too heavy. f/2.8 lenses went out with 35mm film, which only went to about ISO 100 before it started looking ratty. With digital, f/4 and f/5.6 are more than fast enough. It's high time Nikon finally got with the program to make a practical tele zoom like this again so we don't have to hump the f/2.8 beasts. . . . read more
Even at f/4, where the f/2.8 lens should have an advantage, I have been able to detect very little difference. At 70 and 200mm I thought I saw a teeny, eensy, teeny, weeny little advantage in contrast for the f/2.8…..at 2:1 magnification on screen. And no, I’m not reproducing those tests here because that kind of pixel abuse is not to be promoted <grin>. The bokeh, or out of focus rendering, of the lens was just fine. Not anything like a 75mm AA Summicron, but totally acceptable for an f/4 zoom.
I also wouldn't hesitate to us this lens for studio portraiture. It focuses quickly and silently (as expected) and performs as well as anyone would want on a portrait-shoot, throughout its range.
The f/4 lens did seem to have a slightly warmer colour reproduction than the f/2.8 version – though again only very slightly. . . . read more
"The Nikon AF-S 70-200mm f/4G ED VR shows itself to be a remarkably good performer. If you are a Nikon user and are in the market for a 70-200mm focal range lens, it makes a great case for serious consideration with high scores in all lens test metrics and a price that is much lower than expected for the performance on offer. . . . read more