"but I've read that some big Nikons aren't either."
What you have to understand, that at long distances, heat can play a big effect on the photo. I have a Nikon 800mm f5.6 Manual focus lens. Purchased it in 1990, and it's still as good as new.
I was shooting at the SUZUKA 8 Hour Motor Cycle Race in Japan in 1990, just a few months after I acquired the lens.
It wasn't until I got the Kodachrome KR64 trannies back, that some of the photos weren't any good due to heat distortion of the subject. It wasn't the lenses fault, but, heat waves coming up from the ground, actually softened the photo.
I was shooting in the middle of the day ( 38C or 100F )
The 800 looks absolutely amazing, and I agree the teleconverter tech is also very interesting!
I would also love to see this weight and optics technology applied to a 600mm f/4. Given that I could choose this technology in a 600 or an 800, I'd probably go with a 600 for versatility. I hope Nikon is considering extending this technology further in the lineup. I still like the idea of an 800mm though as a logical match for my 500. And the Sigma 300-800 and current Nikon 600mm are worth thinking about.
What's interesting is the 18-35's build. From appearance, it's starting to look more like the 24-70, 16-35, with that prominent front barrel. Certainly from a cosmetic appearance, there's nothing that evokes the old 18-35 AF-D.
>What's interesting is the 18-35's build........ >there's nothing that evokes the old 18-35 AF-D.
Yep, different construction. Hopefully it is fully internal zooming and focusing so that the lens barrel does not pump air in or out on zooming. This is a key component of weather sealing and helps to prevent dust (and more importantly, fungal spores) from getting into the lens. Bodes well for longevity in humid climates if constructed this way.
Since moving from DX to FX I have brought my old 18-35D-AF out of retirement. It is a nice lens but suffers from a bit of softness in the corners compared to the Sigma 10-20 that I was using during my DX days.
So now I'm waiting to see if the new lens is sharper than the old one and how it stacks up against the 16-35 f4 VR before making a move. I like the compactness and light weight. Would like it more if it also had the Nano crystal coat of the 16-35 VR. Won't miss the 16-35's VR on a UWA zoom so that is not an issue.
The new 18-35 price is US $510 less than the 16-35/4.
Gary in SE Michigan, USA. Nikonians membership - My most important photographic investment, after the camera. D4, D810, D300 (720nm IR conversion), D90, F6, FM3a (black), FM2n (chrome) YashicaMat 124, Graflex Speed Graphic 4x5 My Nikonians Gallery & Our Chapter Gallery
The new lens is smaller, quite a bit lighter, and considerably cheaper than the existing 16-35mm. When the 16-35mm was launched, a number of people complained that it was too big and too expensive. Perhaps those people are this lens' target market...?
>The new lens is smaller, quite a bit lighter, and >considerably cheaper than the existing 16-35mm. When the >16-35mm was launched, a number of people complained that it >was too big and too expensive. Perhaps those people are this >lens' target market...?
This is exactly it. For those of us who will never, ever turn on VR on our ultra-wide and don't want to carry the weight, size, or cost.
I'd like to know how this lens possibly retails $150 less than the 10-24DX. So much for DX allowing smaller, cheaper lenses on the wide end.
>What is the purpose of this 18-35mm? .... > I don't understand what gap it is >filling.
Here's how I see it..... In the past few years Nikon has methodically updated all their best selling AF-D FX lenses, both zooms and primes, to the G type (with AF-S).
With this latest addition there are now three complete ranges of good quality FX zooms bridging the most popular 18mm to 200mm range : - entry level set = 18-35, 24-85VR, 70-300VR - midrange f4 set = 16-35VR, 24-120VR, 70-200VR - the f2.8 trinity = 14-24, 24-70, 70-200 VRII There are also f1.8 and f1.4 G-type FX primes in the 35mm, 50mm and 85mm focal lengths.
Note there is no such cohesiveness and order in the limited range of DX offerings.
All DX and FX G lenses are compatible with all DX and FX camera bodies, unlike main competitor Canon which has the EF/EF-S lens incompatibility problem between the APS-C and full frame bodies. .
Finally, because they all have AF-S, Nikon now has the opportunity to introduce a low priced entry level FX body ala D3200/D5200. By removing the in-body AF drive, replacing VF prism with mirrors, removing the top LCD, substituting lower cost AF & shutter modules and going all plastic for the body, you could probably sell an entry level FX camera for less than D7000 prices.
As for the future of DX...Nikon has shown commitment to DX by continuing to develop DX lenses but note these tend to be lower cost models of late. The DX market share is being nibbled at both ends by new innovations - Mirrorless interchangeable lens (MIL), Electronic viewfinder interchangeable lens (EVIL) cameras and bridge cameras are making inroads at the entry level end while lower priced full frame cameras like D600 and Canon's 6D are competing with top end Dx/APS-C models. In both Canon and Nikon cases, the top end DX/APS-C cameras (D300s and 7D) are getting long in the tooth with no real clarity on a successor. the D7000 is also getting long in the tooth. When there is more profit to be made elsewhere, would you prioritise your R&D efforts in the DX direction?
I suspect in future that the DX range will have only 3 model lines; existing D3x00 and D5x00 with the mid-range D7000 and top end D300s being consolidated into a single enthusiast/prosumer line...or maybe even dropped altogether.
This 18-35 looks like a nice lens. I have the old AF version of this lens, and it was my primary ultra-wide zoom on film, before I "upgraded" to DX digital, and now it's a paperweight (because who needs a 27-52 zoom?). My old 18-35 was very contrasty, with wonderful colors. It was sharp in the center. It's been criticized for corner sharpness, but I never noticed it, and I don't put critical elements of my wide angle photos there anyway. It's also very light and small, even though the front filter ring is kind of Mickey Mouse (widened for 77mm filters, though the glass is considerably smaller).
By my calculations, this lens will sell for half what the 16-35 f4 sells for. You don't need VR for this lens, and it's much lighter. I think it is a solid amature lens for those who just can't bring themselves to spend $1,000 for a lens, and who don't want to carry a heavy lens when traveling.
That said,...as stated above, it seems odd that Nikon would update this lens before the 300 f4 and the 80-400 VR. This says to me that we're seeing the beginning of the end for pro-sumer DX Nikons (cough! D7000 and D400). A lens like this tells me that Nikon thinks everybody above the snap shooter will be shooting FX in coming years, like the film days. Could Nikon be envisioning a world of D3200/5200 DX / D500 (something cheaper than $2,000 would be required), D600 and above FX?
As a birder and prospective buyer of a Nikon 800mm I am pretty disappointed today. To put this in perspective, when I bought my CF tripod nearly 5 years ago, I bought a 5-series from Nikonians PhotoProShop to specifically allow for a future possible 800mm as a companion to my then brand-new 500VR. (I can dig up the advice thread if anyone is interested in the helpful tripod advice I received at the time)
Sure I saw the MTFs which are astounding and the Fluorite and the absolutely excellent weight metric, and I'm very interested to see the matching TC (which BTW ought to be included for that price).
i've been shooting near exclusive FX this year, so the 800mm was making more and more sense. Bring on the D400 I guess.
Yes I expected an introductory price of $13K (as was the Canon on introduction), but I certainly hoped for a decline from there, as the Canon has done. But we are talking about a $18K here and some confusing info that the TC is $750 over and above. Call it 19-grand. What can I hope for, a decline to a bargain $17-grand?
And note to my local friends, ahem, please stop emailing me and asking me if I'm going to get this lens
Thanks very much Dave, that takes some of the edge off. Still, I'd really have to start up the rationalizing engine to ever justify this one or make some serious found money somewhere.
No mistake, it looks like a seriously fabulous tool though and the f7.1 is an ingenious move to enable 9 cross-AF points in the centre, as opposed to 1 cross with 4 line sensors at f8. Absolutely I want one...
Shell-shocked is an excellent description. Like you for $12K-$13K I might have gone for one to shoot birds on FX. Since I already have a 600 f/4 there is no way I would consider $18K. I hope they are able to sell at least a few of these lenses.
SteveK, I also followed events leading up to the release of the 800mm f5.6 Nikkor lens with hopeful interest. Maybe I can snag one used in 5 years for a mere $10K !! One very interesting fact is the inclusion of one ED element in the 1.25x teleconverter, (5 elements, 3 groups) along with the electronic diaphragm support. Perhaps Nikon will upgrade their entire teleconverter line with ED glass? I use the 1.4x with my 600mm f4 Nikkor for some of my bird shots, and would be interested in such a relatively affordable upgrade.
Re 18-35mm lens: I never, ever, ever ever ever ever expected to feel this way, but I think I may need to sell a lens or two.
Been wanting Nikon things for a long time, uh, continuously let's say, but it's been a very very long while since I've had this kind of a NEED.
This isn't NAS talking here, it's something along the lines of the four freedoms. Or if it isn't, I'm sure it's implied.
On another note, I thought I'd joined Alice when I stepped into this whole crazy world of photography in the first place. But now the verdict is officially in. I'm actually part of a community that considers a $750 toy – from the with or the without blinking lights and an on/off switch camp of toys – (to quote a colleague in another forum) "a good budget option."
— LaDonna, still wondering where she is and how she got here …
_________________________________ A little knowledge is a dangerous thing
I for one am excited. Like some, I don't need the the added cost, weight and VR of the 16-35. Coming from Canon, what I needed was a replacement for the 17-40 I used on that system and this lens seems pretty close -- if not better (hopefully). After a couple months of consideration I was all but decided on the Tokina 16-28 -- despite its shortcomings. If this lens has the performance I would rather have a smaller lens that takes filters.
I am looking forward to see the reviews if the 18-35. I was hoping for a VR but the 16-35 f4 VR was about the same performance wise as the cheaper 18-35 stopped down several stops. Is the new 18-35 supposed to be sharper?
I was considering pre-ordering it for a trip coming up.
I'll stick with my Sigmonster (Sigma 300-800mm). Nikon's 800mm is ~ 3 lbs lighter and it has a 'dedicated' 1.25 teleconverter, and it's NIKON, so that's great... but at 18K (near list price), it doesn't make sense for me. Plus, I get great results, have come to like the zooming ability, and have even used a 2x teleconverter (I usually don't use one or go up to 1.4)
The Sigma 300-800mm on BH is currently $7,999 and it looks like with a 2% back deal (I didn't read the fine print). To me, that makes it a formidable competitor, as much as I love Nikon.
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