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Manual old manual lens on D800

bendle

Heathmont, AU
18 posts

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bendle Silver Member Nikonian since 25th Nov 2006
Sat 11-Feb-12 03:26 AM

I am a user of manual lenses, I have mainly Zeiss lenses, But i have some older Nikon which i use on my D700. I am wondering if some of the lenses would work on a D800 e.g.. Nikon 80-200 mm F4.5 or would the glass not be good enough for the camera for 36mp. ?

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nikonus

Southern California, US
503 posts

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#1. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 0

nikonus Gold Member Donor Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Nikonian since 04th Feb 2007
Sat 11-Feb-12 11:09 AM

. Some of the older zooms are bad . Many old prime lenses are great , That being said its hard to beat the new pro stuff unless its old Leica or Zeiss . If the 80 - 200 4.5 has good write ups it should be useable . 4.5 seems a tad slow .

Hans K.

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OldCodger

Sawbridgeworth Hertfordshire, UK
679 posts

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#2. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 1

OldCodger Registered since 15th Oct 2011
Sat 11-Feb-12 11:31 AM

Since it appears that you have the older lenses already I would be inclined to start to work with them. Unless you are working on a critical 'must have perfection today dead line', in which case would you be able to get and use an untested set up?
Older Zooms are probably a no no but you have probably screened them out already.
Only replace anything that tests show has a better, (and cost effective) alternative for your work.
Richard

Leonard62

Pa, US
4419 posts

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#3. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 0

Leonard62 Gold Member Awarded for excellent contributions and sharing his in-depth knowledge and experience with the community, especially of Nikkor Lenses Writer Ribbon awarded for his contributions to the Nikonians Resources articles library Nikonian since 15th Mar 2009
Sat 11-Feb-12 12:06 PM

I still use my 80-200mm f4.5 zoom on my D3X. No issues at all. The photos are extremely sharp. That was and is a great lens and can still beat many current consumer grade zooms in that range.

Len

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benveniste

Boston Area, US
10290 posts

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#4. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 0

benveniste Moderator Awarded for is high level skills in various areas, including Macro and Landscape Photography Donor Ribbon. Awarded for his generous suppport to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Donor Ribbon awarded for his very generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2015 Nikonian since 25th Nov 2002
Sat 11-Feb-12 12:41 PM

I am wondering if some of the lenses would work on a D800 e.g.. Nikon 80-200 mm F4.5 or would the glass not be good enough for the camera for 36mp. ?

I suspect Nikon has never made a lens in F-mount which is sharp enough to take full advantage of the D800's sensor at all possible apertures. That doesn't mean you shouldn't use them. In fact, I see no reason not to use any lens you use on a D700 on a D800. I don't care if it's Nikon's newest and best lens or an old AI-converted 43-86mm.

Yes, when viewed on a computer screen at a 100% crop, it's quite possible that your 80-200mm f/4.5 shots from a D800 will look softer than 100% crops from your D700. But rescaled to the same resolution or for the same size print, the shot from the D800 should look at least as good and likely somewhat better.

I haven't used an 80-200mm f/4.5 in many years, but I do own an 80-200mm f/4 AI-s. By today's standards, it's not extraordinary, but in the right hands it's capable of producing great stuff.

I don't know how much I'll use the 80-200mm f/4 on a D800, but I do plan on using a 75-150mm f/3.5E for the same subjects as I've used it with film cameras in the past.

If you want to photograph a man spinning, give some thought to why he spins. Understanding for a photographer is as important as the equipment he uses. - Margaret Bourke-White

LuisGonzalezLT

Macedonia, US
971 posts

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#5. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 0

LuisGonzalezLT Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Nov 2005
Sat 11-Feb-12 02:38 PM

With the D800 we're already hitting diffraction around F/9 and need lenses that give us 2456 LP/PH (about 100 LP/MM) or higher resolution.

For instance:

The Nikon 24-70 F/2.8 exceeds this in almost every focal length even wide open (extreme corners at 40mm being where it falls only a tad below). So you should see quite a difference between a D700 and a D800 image shot with this lens (all other things being equal).

However, the D800 simply has more resolution than a Nikon 28-300 F/3.5-5.6 can deliver in some configurations, even when stopped down. At 28mm you'll need to go to F/5.6 to bring the borders in line and then to F/8 to bring the extreme borders in line. Don't misunderstand - you'll still see more detail in the D800 versus D700 shot since the D700 isn't capturing all of the information the lens can deliver, but the D800 sensor is simply out-performing the lens at times, whereas the D700 sensor does not, so a different lens ( e.g. the 24-70 ) will produce sharper results over the 28-300 in some situations (again, all other things being equal).

Basically, the D700 does let you shoot with a wide variety of Nikon and Third Party glass and get really good results, however this won't be the case when you go to the D800/D800E. You might need to do a lens arsenal upgrade to get the most out of it, not to mention a stricter shooting technique. This is the same issue we encountered with the D7000.

Luis Gonzalez
Everlasting Photography, Inc.

bendle

Heathmont, AU
18 posts

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#6. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 5

bendle Silver Member Nikonian since 25th Nov 2006
Sat 11-Feb-12 09:13 PM

Many thanks for your replays, i guess the best way to find out for sure will be to try it when the camera is available.

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Leonard62

Pa, US
4419 posts

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#7. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 5

Leonard62 Gold Member Awarded for excellent contributions and sharing his in-depth knowledge and experience with the community, especially of Nikkor Lenses Writer Ribbon awarded for his contributions to the Nikonians Resources articles library Nikonian since 15th Mar 2009
Sat 11-Feb-12 11:45 PM

>Basically, the D700 does let you shoot with a wide variety of
>Nikon and Third Party glass and get really good results,
>however this won't be the case when you go to the D800/D800E.
>You might need to do a lens arsenal upgrade to get the most
>out of it, not to mention a stricter shooting technique. This
>is the same issue we encountered with the D7000.
>
>Luis Gonzalez
>Everlasting Photography, Inc.

Hi Luis,

Until I get a D800 and try my lenses on it I will disagree with some of this thinking. I have many many lenses, some over 40 years old that I use on my D3X all the time. I see mostly better resolution photos with nearly every lens on the D3X versus the D700 and D300. I will say that the photographer will need better shooting technique and more attention to focus and exposure. I think that's the problem we're seeing with the D7000 and not because it's making good lenses look bad.

Here's a photo I just took with my old 80-200mm f4.5 lens on my D3X. I shot the photo wide open at f4.5 and applied absolutely no post processing. First the full frame and then the 100% crop. I bought this lens in 1978.

Click on image to view larger version


Click on image to view larger version


Len



Attachment#1 (jpg file)
Attachment#2 (jpg file)

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LuisGonzalezLT

Macedonia, US
971 posts

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#8. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 7

LuisGonzalezLT Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Nov 2005
Sun 12-Feb-12 01:52 AM

Those look great, Len, and it made me all of a sudden want to raid the pantry for that chocolate bar :-P

I never said that because a lens was an old lens that it was not up to the task on a D800 (i.e. I wasn't singling out the 80-200/4.5 in my post). Old or new doesn't really matter. There are plenty of older lenses that are sharper than newer lenses and vice-versa, as you well know.

You have also introduced a third camera now into the discussion, the D3X, whereas I was discussing the 12MP D700 versus the 36MP D800 per the original posters request.

The D3X has a vertical resolution of 4032 pixels, so you're 80-200 needs to yield about 2000 line pairs/picture height, compared to a D800 which ups the ante to just shy of 2500 line pairs. The D700 at 2832 vertical pixels is way down at 1400 line pairs, which is significantly less than the D3X, by about the same amount that the D3X is less than the D800. There aren't many lenses that don't resolve 1400 line pairs - at least in the center. At 2000 you'll start dropping some lenses. At 2500, you'll drop even more. If there was an FX 144MP sensor (that wasn't diffraction afflicted) then there probably wouldn't be a single lens that Nikon makes that could approach it. On the converse, if there was a 1MP FX sensor that was roughly 700 x 1400 pixels then all your lens would need to resolve would be 350 line pairs. Get out that old hand magnifier

Just saying that any given lens may not let you get the most out of your D800. It may give you good results on a D700 and probably on a D3X, but it could be that when you put it on a D800 you really don't get any additional detail than you were getting on the D3X. You said yourself that you see "mostly better resolution photos with nearly every lens" so you apparently have some lenses that are not up to the task even on your D3X. Going to a D800 you might find a few more lenses added to that list.

I do want to say that, even if a given lens doesn't provide enough resolution on a D800 versus a D700, it shouldn't produce a worse image on the D800, and you might see some benefit regarding ISO noise, etc. We're just talking strictly lens versus sensor resolutions.

Luis Gonzalez
Everlasting Photography, Inc.

Leonard62

Pa, US
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#9. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 8

Leonard62 Gold Member Awarded for excellent contributions and sharing his in-depth knowledge and experience with the community, especially of Nikkor Lenses Writer Ribbon awarded for his contributions to the Nikonians Resources articles library Nikonian since 15th Mar 2009
Sun 12-Feb-12 11:42 AM

Now I'm with you, Luis. This explanation makes more sense to me. I have no plans to buy the D800 right away if at all. But my son is at the top of the list at my local dealer so I'll have a better idea about lens compatibility early in the game. Over the years I have tried to get only the best lenses that Nikon offered. These lenses perform beautifully on the D3X. I have only seen 3 lenses that don't perform the way I like on my D3X. One has de-centered elements, one has been dropped and one just has poor resolution until f8 or so. I have an old 43-86 that I purchased in 1977 and haven't used in years. Maybe I'll see how that fares.

Thanks,
Len

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Leonard62

Pa, US
4419 posts

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#10. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 9

Leonard62 Gold Member Awarded for excellent contributions and sharing his in-depth knowledge and experience with the community, especially of Nikkor Lenses Writer Ribbon awarded for his contributions to the Nikonians Resources articles library Nikonian since 15th Mar 2009
Sun 12-Feb-12 02:37 PM

Here's a comparison of one of Nikon's poorly regarded lenses, the AI 43-86mm f3.5 and a highly regarded lens, the AF 85mm f1.4D.

The zoom was shot at 86mm f3.5 with the AF 85mm at f3.5 as well.

AI 43-86 on the left. 100% crops from the D3X.

Click on image to view larger version


The AFD 85 clearly has improved resolution and contrast. Actually the 43-86 photo looks better then I expected. But that's typical of nearly every lens I use in the D3X. Wait a couple months and I'll run the same test with the D800.

Len

Attachment#1 (jpg file)

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LuisGonzalezLT

Macedonia, US
971 posts

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#11. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 10

LuisGonzalezLT Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Nov 2005
Sun 12-Feb-12 04:24 PM

Yeah - that's a great example of a lens that doesn't cut it on a D3X, at least wide open (it hopefully would fare better at F/8 or so). It would also be interesting to do the same lens test on a D700 versus the D3X. They might look more similar in that case since the 85/1.4 shot will blur up a bit from the lower resolution. On a D800 this test might make them look even further apart in quality.

Once I get the D800 in March my buddy and I are going to do a full D700/D800/D7000 cross-test with the 70-200 VR1, 70-200 VR2, 16-35/4 VR and a Tamron 17-50/2.8, just to start to get an idea of what we're really dealing with.

Luis Gonzalez
Everlasting Photography, Inc.

Leonard62

Pa, US
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#12. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 11

Leonard62 Gold Member Awarded for excellent contributions and sharing his in-depth knowledge and experience with the community, especially of Nikkor Lenses Writer Ribbon awarded for his contributions to the Nikonians Resources articles library Nikonian since 15th Mar 2009
Sun 12-Feb-12 06:30 PM

>Yeah - that's a great example of a lens that doesn't cut it
>on a D3X, at least wide open (it hopefully would fare better
>at F/8 or so). It would also be interesting to do the same
>lens test on a D700 versus the D3X. They might look more
>similar in that case since the 85/1.4 shot will blur up a bit
>from the lower resolution. On a D800 this test might make them
>look even further apart in quality.
>
I just ran the same test with the D700. You're right. The 43-86mm improved a lot versus the D3X shot but not up to the 85mm prime. The 85mm lost just a little resolution on the D700. That's a very interesting test using the two cameras. Now I expect the 43-86mm will not look very good on the D800.

Len

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LuisGonzalezLT

Macedonia, US
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#13. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 12

LuisGonzalezLT Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Nov 2005
Sun 12-Feb-12 07:18 PM

Now you're seeing first-hand where I'm really heading with all of this. Even the D700 sensor is mopping the floor with the 43-86. Maybe we need to go way down to a 6MP body with that lens before things even out enough in comparison to other lenses, but on a D800 things are going to look really ugly for it. Again - on the D800 you're going to get the best that lens can possibly deliver, but a sharper lens will really show just how much sharper it is.

One other thing to make sure of, though, when doing these tests is to make sure you have tried to clean up any chromatic aberrations in post to make it a more fair test, even if you have to do it manually for those old lenses.

I'm already concerned a little about my 16-35/4 VR since it's a bit soft at the corners at F/4 at 16mm and that's a configuration I do tend to use. It's been fine on my D700 where the lens corners flirt with the sensor resolution, but making that jump to the D800 might mean using the 14-24 instead to get the most out of the D800. I use the 16-35 primarily for the VR since I have developed my technique to be able to shoot it for a full second at 16mm handheld, which works great for nature shots involving water - or darker churches for those wide shots, something I certainly can't do with the 14-24, but stick the 14-24 on a tripod with a D800 and I'll expect the result will be "wow" when compared to the 16-35

Luis Gonzalez
Everlasting Photography, Inc.

KnightPhoto

Alberta, CA
4962 posts

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#14. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 13

KnightPhoto Gold Member Nikonian since 18th Dec 2006
Sun 12-Feb-12 10:36 PM

Will be interested in your 16-35 tests - it's my only UWA currently. And the other lenses you mention also...

As an aside, I owned a copy of the original Sigma 12-24 and tested it side by side on my D700 when I got my 16-35. Despite some critics of the Nikon 16-35, it mopped the floor with the Sigma I had been shooting with. So I came away pretty happy with my 16-35 seeing how it was leagues better than what I had been shooting. I do try and stop down at the extremes (16 and 35mm) if I can since I think that's where it has some minor flaws on the test bench. I'm still curious about the latest Sigma 12-24, it's design has been much improved.

Best regards, SteveK

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LuisGonzalezLT

Macedonia, US
971 posts

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#15. "RE: Manual old manual lens on D800" | In response to Reply # 14

LuisGonzalezLT Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Nov 2005
Sun 12-Feb-12 11:58 PM

I had that Sigma 12-24 even back when I still had a 35mm film body and was never really happy with it. Of course, the difference in angle of view between 12mm and 16mm on a full frame camera is rather noticeable. It's about an extra 15 degrees.

The 16-35 is not so bad at 35mm in the corners. 16mm corners is where it is really lacking, but they are just the corners so it really depends on what you are shooting. It's actually not so bad at 28mm at F/4. The 14-24 mops the floor with it, though, and I have the suspicion that I'll have to resort to using a 14-24 on the D800 alot more than the 16-35. Guessing here but on a D800 with shutter speeds below ( maybe 1/30th at 14mm or 1/60th at 24mm ) without a tripod the 16-35 will probably give you a better shot than the 14-24 due to how it handles camera shake.

Luis Gonzalez
Everlasting Photography, Inc.

G