I recently converted a Nikon Z6 mirrorless camera to capture infrared images. Along with my Image Doctors co-host Rick Walker, I tested most of the new Nikon Z-mount lenses to see how well they performed for infrared photography, including sharpness and the appearance of hot-spots. We also tested a slate of F-mount lenses using the Nikon FTZ adapter to see how well they performed on the Nikon Z6 in infrared.
The all-purpose zoom lens that’s perfect for travel and walkabout photography
Earlier this year, Nikon announced the 24-200mm f/4-6.3 VR zoom Nikkor for full-frame (FX) Z-mount mirrorless cameras. Despite its variable aperture design, I was intrigued by the idea of having a native Z-mount lens for travel and general purpose photography. During my international photo tours, I typically used my 24-120mm f/4 VR zoom Nikkor as my primary lens.
When I moved to the Nikon Z mirrorless camera system last year, one of the challenges I faced was coming up with an appropriate travel kit. When I’m traveling, especially internationally, the size and weight of my kit are more important than superior optical quality. The Nikon 24-70mm f/4 S lens, which is the Nikon Z “kit” lens, is very good but has a limited zoom range, meaning I’d need to add a longer telephoto zoom to my bag.
I considered using my 24-120mm f/4 with the FTZ lens mount adapter, but I found that it was a little clumsy to use and frankly, quite heavy. That left me with the following travel kit:
- Nikon Z7 mirrorless camera body
- Nikon Z 14-30mm f/4 S zoom Nikkor
- Nikon Z 24-70mm f/4 S zoom Nikkor
- Nikon 70-200mm f/4 AFS G VR zoom Nikkor (plus FTZ adapter).
This kit worked well on my photo tour of Scotland in the fall of 2019, but it was still a bit cumbersome compared to having a good all-purpose zoom lens. With the addition of the 24-200mm to the Nikon Z lineup, I could theoretically have a two-lens kit, with the 24-200mm being my go-to lens in most situations. This change would save me nearly a kilogram of weight from my bag!Continue reading Nikon Z 24-200mm Lens Review
A fun fisheye zoom that will spark your creativity… just be careful not to photograph your feet!
I received a production copy of the new Nikon 8-15mm f/3.5-4.5 E ED Fisheye Nikkor from B&H Photo to test and review.
I’m still playing around with this lens, but so far, it’s been fun! At 8mm, you get a circular fisheye with a whopping 180° angle of view when you mount this lens on a FX-format Nikon DSLR. Point this lens straight up and you will get subjects both in front of you and behind you in the frame! Yep, you’ll want to be careful of getting your feet or tripod legs in the shot with this lens. Continue reading First Impressions of the Nikon 8-15mm Fisheye Zoom Nikkor
As you may know, I’m testing the new Nikon 105mm f/1.4E ED Nikkor portrait lens. One of the main questions I’ve been asked over on my Facebook page is, “how does it compare to the 105mm micro-Nikkor?”
- Nikon 105mm f/1.4E ED Nikkor (see specs and pricing)
- Nikon 105mm f/2.8 AFS G VR micro-Nikkor (see specs and pricing)
It’s a fair question, as I’ve long listed the 105mm f/2.8 AFS G VR micro-Nikkor as an excellent portrait lens. For this purpose, at least to me, there are really only two discriminators: VR (stabilization) and aperture. Continue reading Nikon 105mm f/1.4E vs. 105mm f/2.8 AFS G VR Macro
I’ve had a few more opportunities to shoot with the new Nikon 105mm f/1.4E ED Nikkor, so I thought I’d post some sample images here. Most of these were shot wide-open, because that’s what this lens is all about. Simply put, if you’re into shots with shallow depth of field and incredible subject isolation, then this is a tremendous lens.
- The lens is quite sharp wide-open, but you have to be SUPER CAREFUL about your focus point because DOF is incredibly shallow (you knew that, of course).
- Use AF Fine-Tuning to make sure you get the focus point dead-on with this lens. Any slight front or back-focus will be very noticeable!
- There is light fall-off at f/1.4 but I actually like it because it creates a natural vignette effect in portraits. Adobe Lightroom now includes a lens correction setting for the 105mm f/1.4E, but I almost think that I like it better with vignette correction disabled.
- This is a big lens (82mm front filter). It’s not something I’d carry around as part of my regular kit unless I were a portrait/wedding photographer (then it would live permanently in my bag).