Today's announcement of the new Nikon AF-S 80-400mm ED VR F4.5-5.6 G, will be welcome news to many Nikon DSLR owners. The initial 80-400mm was announced 12 years ago, and often is near the head of lens wish lists Nikon-users would like to see with an update.
The all new release of this revered optic provides some significant specification enhancement compared to previous version - there's a totally-new optical layout, for starters. 20 elements, with 12-group layout featuring
four ED (extra low-dispersion) lens elements, one of them a 'super ED' element along with the Nikon Nano-crystal coating, engineered to improve resistance to flare. It also containing an on-board SWM ultrasonic-style focus motor, along with a revised VR system with the capacity of an alleged
vibration reduction of four stops .
The initial 80-400mm was the first Nikon lens to boast Vibration Reduction. However it did not feature an on-board AF motor, and however used the older style
AF-D screw-drive engineering, which depends upon the built-in autofocus motor in the camera. Explicitly, this means that entry-level Nikon DSLR owners of the D3000 thru D5000-series which lack autofocus motors in the camera body can only make use of AF-D lenses while using manual focus mode.
Same as the original edition, the new Nikon 80-400mm is delivered with its own tripod collar. The older version was re-engineered after complaints of
instability. Let's hope the new collar which is packaged with the re-engineered lens has seen improvement along with the optical glass it contains. Even when mounted on cameras featuring
built-in autofocus motors, the first 80-400mm is recognized for comparatively slow AF, and hunted at the longer end of the focal length reach. Twelve years subsequent to its announcement, the initial VR system found in the first 80-400mm appears decidedly dated as well, when compared to the newer Nikkor lens systems
The original tripod collar shipped with the initial edition of the Nikon 80-400mm had many complaints of not being stable enough - something that I hope has been taken care of with this new version. Despite having image stabilization, a secure camera mount is an essential when photographing at the long zoom end using marginal shutter speeds.
Over all, the new Nikon 80-400mm appears as if it is going to be a very solid performer. Optically, its predecessor delivered decent, although not outstanding shooting performance. If Nikon has found ways to make genuine improvements in needed areas, then this along with the additional of an on-board AF-S motor plus vibration reduction of four stops, should make it very popular with photographers using both the Nikon FX and DX-format DSLRs.
Shop at the new Nikon 80-400 VR G these stores
80 - 400 mm
Comparable DX Focal
Length: 120 - 600 mm