Nikon just announced two new telephoto zoom lenses during CES 2020: the Nikon NIKKOR Z 70-200mm F/2.8 VR S for mirrorless cameras and the F-mount Nikon AF-S 120-300mm F/2.8E FL ED SR VR. Both of these premium lenses feature a constant F/2.8 aperture through the entire zoom range. Let’s take a closer look at these!
Nikon NIKKOR Z 70-200mm F/2.8 VR S
The Nikon NIKKOR Z 70-200mm F/2.8 VR S is the first telephoto lens for Nikon Z cameras. This lens is an excellent complement to the NIKKOR Z 24-70mm F/2.8 S, and both lenses have lots in common. Indeed, the NIKKOR Z 70-200mm F/2.8 VR S features a dedicated manual focus ring in addition to the customizable control ring and the zoom ring.
The control ring can be customized in the camera to adjust various settings. For example, you can set it to change the aperture, the ISO, the white balance, or the exposure compensation. Also, it has an internal focusing and zoom mechanism, so the lens doesn’t extend, and it is weather-sealed.
On top of the lens, there is a built-in OLED information-display panel. It lets you quickly see various settings like your aperture, focus distance, exact focal length, ISO, and depth of field directly on the lens. If you are shooting handheld, the NIKKOR Z 70-200mm F/2.8 VR S features Vibration Reduction technology. The built-in lens stabilization can work jointly with the in-body image stabilization of the Nikon Z6/Z7.
It is a relatively lightweight lens at 3.2lbs/1.4kg, considering the lens features 21 elements in 18 groups. To help you reduce flaring, ghosting, chromatic aberrations, and so on, there are 6 ED lens elements, two aspherical elements, one fluorite element, 1 SR lens element, elements with Nano Crystal and ARNEO coats, and a fluorine-coated front lens element. Otherwise, one thing that is strange to me is that the front filter diameter of the NIKKOR Z 70-200mm F/2.8 VR S is 77mm, whereas the 24-70mm F/2.8 S features an 82mm diameter.
The minimum focus distance is 0.5m at 70mm and one meter at 200mm. The 9-blade aperture should provide a pleasing bokeh. Nikon claims that the lens is parfocal, so your subject stays perfectly sharp even if you change your focal length.
Nikon AF-S 120-300mm F/2.8E FL ED SR VR
Nikon also announced a new impressive F-mount lens compatible with Full-Frame (FX) cameras: the Nikon AF-S 120-300mm F/2.8E FL ED SR VR. The zoom range of this lens is not usual, and it is even more impressive if you add a 1.4x or 2.0x teleconverter to it.
This lens features a constant F/2.8 aperture. Also, it features Vibration Reduction technology that should compensate for up to 4 stops, according to Nikon. If you are shooting sports, there is a dedicated Sports VR mode. But, at 7.1lbs/3.25kg and a whopping price of nearly $10.000, this lens is not for everyone.
On the inside, there is also a Silent Wave Motor for quiet autofocusing. According to Nikon, the “AF performance is equivalent to a prime lens, and this telephoto lens keeps pace with fast-moving subjects—even when they’re moving erratically. An electromagnetic diaphragm ensures precise exposures at high frame rates.”
The lens design consists of 25 elements in 19 groups, including 1 ED lens element, two fluorite elements, 1 SR lens element, lens elements with Nano Crystal and ARNEO coats, and a fluorine-coated front lens element. The lens is massive, and the front filter diameter is 112mm.
As you would expect from a lens in this price range, this 120-300mm F/2.8 is fully weather-sealed. It is a workhorse made to withstand the worse weather conditions daily.
Pricing and Availability
Both lenses will be available in February. The Nikon NIKKOR Z 70-200mm F/2.8 VR S retails for $2599. If you have deep pockets, the Nikon AF-S 120-300mm F/2.8E FL ED SR VR retails for $9,496.95.
What do you think of these new Nikon lenses? Did you already start investing in Nikon NIKKOR Z lenses? Let us know in the comments below!