I added the “I don’t care” to the title because there are plenty of Nikon lenses that I lust after – particularly the recent 85mm F1.4. These two new lenses, announced at the same time that Nikon announced they’ve now manufactured a total of 70 million lenses, are not for me but I suppose they are for someone.
Here’s the first. It’s a 24-85mm F3.5-4.5 ED VR. This is an FX (full frame) lens but let’s face it folks, there’s simply no way that this lens will perform as well as the Nikon 24-70mm F2.8, especially on a camera like the D800. Some may see the VR as nice to have – I personally think it’s unnecessary at these focal lengths. At US$600, this is clearly targeted at people who can’t afford the 24-70mm (more than double the price) but want decent coverage in the middle range.
Here’s the second. This 18-300mm F3.5-5.6 ED VR is a DX lens and on an APS-C sensor camera will be the 35mm equivalent to a 27-450mm zoom. Selling for US$1,000, I suppose this lens is targeted at entry level DSLR owners with deep pockets who want just one lens that will “do it all” but I suspect this lens will be the stereotypical jack of all trades, master of none.
Here’s the full press release for those who love some marketing lingo;
Nikon Expands Acclaimed NIKKOR Lens Lineup with the Addition of the New 18-300mm VR All-in-One High Power Super Zoom Lens and the 24-85mm VR Lens
New Lenses for FX and DX-Format Photographers Include the AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR Lens, A Super Zoom Lens with Astounding 16.7X DX Zoom, and the AF-S NIKKOR 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED VR lens, A Versatile Everyday Lens for FX Shooters
MELVILLE, N.Y. –
Today, Nikon Inc. announced the addition of two new lenses to the legendary NIKKOR lineup, the AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR and the AF-S NIKKOR 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED VR lenses. The new 18-300mm VR lens is a versatile and compact 16.7X all-in-one super zoom DX-format lens, while the new 24-85mm VR lens is an ideal standard zoom for any FX-format photographer. These optics were designed to meet the needs of all types of photographers, from those looking to capture everything from family outings to elusive wildlife and stunning landscapes. The new 18-300mm and 24-85mm lenses deliver the performance and superior image quality that photographers of all levels have come to expect from NIKKOR lenses whether capturing still images or HD videos.
To capture stunningly sharp images with excellent clarity and color reproduction or HD video that exhibits sharp critical focus with a dramatic depth of field, the new 18-300mm VR and 24-85mm VR lenses will empower photographers with a variety of exclusive core NIKKOR technologies. Both lenses are equipped with Nikon’s Vibration Reduction (VR) II image stabilization system which provides the equivalent of a shutter speed approximately four stops faster. The built-in Vibration Reduction will help photographers create blur-free images and video while shooting handheld and in challenging lighting conditions. Two focus modes, manual-priority autofocus (M/A) and manual focus (M), are easily selected in both lenses as well. When either lens is in manual-priority autofocus (M/A) mode, users will be able to instantly switch from autofocus to manual focus operation by simply rotating the focus ring, even during AF servo operation. Additionally, both lenses feature an internal focusing system, providing fast focus without changing the length of the lens while retaining working distance through the focus range, and Nikon’s Silent Wave Motor (SWM) technology designed to deliver fast, accurate and quiet AF performance. The lenses also boast Nikon’s Super Integrated Coating (SIC) which provides superb color reproduction, color consistency and reduced flaring.
“Whether a pro on assignment, a photo enthusiast or an indie cinematographer, all Nikon users appreciate and rely on the vast selection and reliability of NIKKOR lenses for all of their imaging needs,” said Bo Kajiwara, director of marketing, Nikon Inc. “The new AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-300mm VR and AF-S NIKKOR 24-85mm VR lenses are fully optimized to capture stunning images and videos while meeting the growing needs of photographers of all levels around the world.”
The NIKKOR 18-300mm VR Lens: Nikon’s Longest Focal Range
Building on the popularity and versatility of Nikon’s telephoto zoom lens lineup which includes both the NIKKOR 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 and 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VR lenses, the new 18-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens is Nikon’s longest focal range ever, with an astounding 16.7X ultrahigh-ratio zoom range. The DX-format 18-300mm VR lens is surprisingly compact, lightweight and covers a focal range from wide-angle 18mm to super-telephoto 300mm, equivalent to a focal length of 27mm to 450mm in FX/35mm format. At the 300mm focal length setting, the lens’ large f/5.6 aperture enables photographers to shoot at faster shutter speeds with shallow depth-of-field. This new super telephoto zoom lens is ideal for taking stills when travelling and for all around general photography including landscapes, portraits and distant subjects. The 18-300mm lens is also excellent for recording HD video as it can be used for wide establishing shots, medium close-up shots and extreme telephoto sequences when the users want to separate the subject from the background.
The construction of the AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens consists of 19 optical elements in 14 groups with three Extra-low Dispersion (ED) glass elements that effectively minimize chromatic aberration, even at the widest aperture settings, and three aspherical lens elements that virtually eliminate aberrations at wide aperture settings. The new lens also incorporates a nine rounded blade diaphragm to help achieve a natural looking dramatic separation between subject and background.
The AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR also has a dedicated zoom lock switch which secures the lens barrel at its minimum length and will prevent the lens from sliding during transportation. Additionally, the 18-300mm VR lens is ideal for capturing close-ups with great detail, as it offers a 1.48 ft. minimum focusing distance at 300mm, as well as a maximum reproduction ratio of 1:3.2X.
The NIKKOR 24-85mm VR Lens: The Standard Zoom for FX Shooters
Ideal for photographers seeking an FX-format compatible standard zoom lens, the new AF-S NIKKOR 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED VR lens delivers sharp, crisp and high-quality images and can be assigned as an everyday walkabout lens. Covering the frequently used focal-length range of 24mm to 85mm, this lens is a great companion for any FX-format shooter and is ideal for shooting stills of landscapes, architecture, head and shoulder portraits, candid shots or group shots. For HD video shooters, the 24-85mm VR lens is a natural choice when filming landscapes, large groups of people or when wide field establishing shots or medium close-ups are needed. The 24-85mm lens is a great everyday lens that is compact, lightweight and easy to carry on any photo assignment or family adventure.
In addition to the lens’ built-in Vibration Reduction (VR) technology, the AF-S NIKKOR 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED VR lens features Auto Tripod detection which recognizes when the camera is mounted on a tripod, even during HD video recording, to help deliver specialized VR correction. The lens construction of the 24-85mm VR lens consists of 16 optical elements in 11 groups with one Extra-low Dispersion (ED) glass element, three aspherical lens elements and a seven rounded blade diaphragm.
Price and Availability
The AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens will be available at the end of June 2012 for the suggested retail price (SRP) of $999.95*. The AF-S NIKKOR 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED VR lens will also be available at the end of June 2012 and will have a suggested retail price (SRP) of $599.95*. For more information on these new NIKKOR lenses and other Nikon products, please visit www.nikonusa.com.
About the NIKKOR brand
With a comprehensive assortment of FX and DX-format lenses and focal lengths, from the ultra-wide 10-24mm to the super telephoto 600mm VR, Nikon photographers have come to rely upon the NIKKOR core technologies that contribute to their optical superiority. NIKKOR is the brand name for Nikon’s photographic lenses, which are precision crafted to the most exacting standards in Nikon’s own glassworks. In 1933, Nikon marketed its first camera lens under the NIKKOR brand name, the “Aero-NIKKOR” for aerial photography applications. Since then, NIKKOR has been used as a brand name for Nikon’s lenses that symbolizes durability, high image quality and optical excellence.
Nikon, At the Heart of the Image™. Nikon Inc. is the world leader in digital imaging, precision optics and photo imaging technology and is globally recognized for setting new standards in product design and performance for its award-winning consumer and professional photographic equipment. Nikon Inc. distributes consumer and professional digital SLR cameras, NIKKOR optics, Speedlights and system accessories; Nikon COOLPIX® compact digital cameras; 35mm film SLR cameras; Nikon software products and Nikon sports and recreational optics as well as the new Nikon 1 advanced camera with interchangeable lens system. In 2012, production of NIKKOR lenses surpassed 70 million, creating a new milestone in Nikon’s heritage of superior optics. For more information, dial (800) NIKON-US or visit http://www.nikonusa.com, which links all levels of photographers to the Web’s most comprehensive photo learning and sharing communities. Connect with Nikon and other photographers on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/nikon and get the latest news and information from Twitter by following @NikonUSA.
*SRP (Suggested Retail Price) listed only as a suggestion. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time.
Specifications, equipment and release dates are subject to change without any notice or obligation on the part of the manufacturer.