Nikon's AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.4G

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For photojournalists, wedding photographers and others who often find themselves shooting stills or video under less than desirable lighting conditions, the new Nikkor AF-S 35mm f/1.4G completes the trifecta of Nikkor high-speed hotties that include Nikon's previously released AF-S 85mm f/1.4G and AF-S 24mm f/1.4G.


A total redesign of a Nikkor classic, the new Nikkor AF-S 35mm f/1.4G is a natural for any number of low-light shooting applications, or for times when you need narrow range selective focus with a semi-wide angle perspective. The new 35 can be used on both full frame or APS-C format DSLRs, on which it displays the field of view of a 52.2mm lens.

The Nikkor AF-S 35mm f/1.4G is designed around 10 elements in 7 groups, and includes one aspherical lens element to aid in suppressing coma and related image-degrading optical aberrations even when shooting wide open. For increased color saturation and suppressing lens flare—backlit or otherwise, the Nikkor AF-S 35mm f/1.4G features Nano Crystal coatings, and there's a 9-bladed aperture diaphragm for natural-looking bokeh.

The new lens, which is built tough and feels solid to the touch, employs dual focusing modes—Manual-Priority AF (M/A) and full Manual (M)—that are aided by a Rear Focus (RF) system allowing for quicker, smoother focusing action and eliminates front-barrel rotation. There's also a refined manual focus driving mechanism, which reduces focus time lag while improving overall focusing performance.

The new Nikkor AF-S 35mm f/1.4G is expected to arrive at B&H sometime in November, 2010, and we plan on producing a full hands-on road test at that time.

So stay tuned.

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This looks amazing!! I want it soo bad already! Does anyone know how much one will run?

Timothy Lefkowitz wrote:

This looks amazing!! I want it soo bad already! Does anyone know how much one will run?

At this point in time it's listed at $ 1,799.95  on the B&H website

Wow, I was thinking that maybe it was time to upgrade from my AF-S 35mm f/1.8 that cost me a few hundred ... until I saw that price!

I cannot belive the insane price of this lense. A nearly $1500 price premium for a 1 stop difference in light is just crazy. I was so dissapointed when I saw what the $1800 price tag for this lense. If Nikon can produce a beautiful 50mm 1.4 lense for under $500, why can't they do the same for this? I really don't undertsand the logic behind this. This is a prime lens! Not a super zoom f2 lens. Seems to me Nikon is pricing themselves right out of the market for this lens and the 24 and 85 primes as well. So, so dissapoinrted. Can someone please clarify why Nikon is choosing to price their lenses into the stratosfere?

yes way overpriced- especially considering you can get the Zeiss to fit Nikon with the same specs, 35mm f1.4, for less than a hundred bucks more.  If you wanted to spend that kind of money for glass, which I don't, the Zeiss would be a much better buy.

Before this pricing issue gets out of hand it's important to take a few thought's into mind. First off, the Nikon 35/1.8 DX is what the name says it is, namely a DX lens, which means it's for APS-C format DSLRs. Now that's not meant to be a slap in the face - I've shot extensively with it and it's not only quite sharp, but pricewise it's also a darn bargain.

Before going off on let's consider the following-

  1. The new AF-S 35mm/1.4G covers both FX (full-frame) and DX formats.
  2. The new 35/1.4 is built to far tougher standards than the 35mm/1.8. Rather than a polymer lens barrel, the barrel on the 35/1.4 is constructed from weather-sealed metal alloy (hence the heftier weight).
  3. The new 35/1.4 features advanced Nano & Super Integrated coatings, which DO make a difference in image quality.
  4. Add to this aspheric lens surfaces and you have a lens that costs more than the 35/1.8.

All that additional weather seal and metal construction cost $1500 more than the DX?  Maybe Nikon need to re-evaluate their process.

Nikon doesn't need to re-evaluate anything: just look at the price of any fast (f/1.4 or faster) professional lens, and you'll see most if not all are in the $1K+ range. That's simply what they cost, right down the line. I can't afford them either, but I don't begrudge the fact that any professional worth his salt will say that such lenses are worth every penny. It's not simply construction + weather sealing + lens coatings (all of which do add up), it's also the sheer size of the glass: fast lenses require larger elements--FX lenses even moreso. Professionals in the field (think journalists, sports photographers, etc.) require not only solid lenses that will hold up under adverse conditions, they need precision and shot-to-shot dependability. 

As much as I love my 35/1.8 DX, I have no illusions about its ability to take a serious licking and keep on ticking. For enthusiasts and advanced amateurs shooting with APS-C sensors, the 1.8 is a dream lens. But for working pros with $3K-plus full-frame bodies who need to consistently deliver top-quality images with as little hassle as possible, lenses like the new 35/1.4 carry a premium they're more than happy to spring for. Or rent. 

Let's try to keep this in perspective, folks.

You would think they would have at least thrown in VR at that pricepoint.  I dont use it that much personally.  But IMO any lens over 1k should have it.

My two cents: when it comes to the necessities of life, e.g. food, water, shelter, certain automobiles yes, I understand experssing disappointment about costs. But let's face it: a camera, more specifically, a DSLR, is a luxury item. I'm not saying that life is only about the necessities, but just because you desire a luxury item doesn't mean you're being scammed / ripped-off / shortchanged because the manufacturer decides to charge a luxury price. If you can't afford it or don't want to pay the price -- both of which I totally understand! -- then the lens is not for you. WE all know, or should know, that photography can become an expensive hobby or business ... Apparently, Nikon has done its market research and decided that the it's-for-me group is large enough to justify bringing this lens to market. None of what I say means that a person can't complain about Nikon's pricing, of course you can.

The first thing I read in this article is: "good for weddings" I'm sorry I'm not going to marry fith this lens, my wife doesn't allow me. The features writer laks of a little imagination. The motion picture makers are looking for "affordable" primos like this. sharpness, luminosity and and quality. But what can I do with this lens attached to my APSC Nikon?. Actually I would be very happy belonging it. Nikon company should develope a pro line for DX cameras, Affordable If it is not asking too much. Quality and luminosity zooms.

Okay folks, let's get one thing straight.  This lens is worth every penny. Period.

Second, you who are comparing this lens to the 35 1.8DX ***** to move on down the line, especially if you are still shooting DX this day and age.

Wanna know what a real professional hates about this lens? That it's not in stock right now for me to have overnighted for this weekend.

No, VR is not needed.

The people who need this lens will almost always be photographing motion, movement, candid imagery etc. VR isn't worth a **** for that and as a photojournalist frankly VR has never helped me.

This lens is completely worth it and I'm just ****** I can't get it in my hands right now. I've had to use the ****** 35 f/2 for 4 years because there isn't another AF prime to choose from. Just as I was about to switch to Canon Nikon finally put this out, now if they would only ship when they say the would. The front on my 35 f/2 has about 1 month left on it before it falls off probably.

If you want to complain about it don't buy it, I don't understand the hostility. I'm a photographer so I don't have much $ but the tools are pretty important, especially ones like this, which I will make about 80% of all my digital pictures with.  

 Respetados, Señores.

Quiero saber ****** cuesta el lente; AF-S NIKKOR 85 mm F/1.4 G Como lo ***** adquirir y cancelar (pagar).

Sin otro particular, quedo pendiente de su respuestas y agradecido por la atención

prestada a esta.

Cordialmente,

JOSE JOAQUIN GONZALEZ  

Oh for Heavens sake, if you really want the lens and can't afford $1500-$1700, chances are you could not buy it if it were $1000. You can't have everything that comes along that is better than what you got. Some things cost more money than you got. As it has already been pointed out, it is a superior lens in every detail and it's performance too. Better things cost more money, especially if it can outperform similar products. And the demand is there and there are those that want it and have the money to buy it. So suck it up and do the best you can with what you got untill you can do better!        

50mm AFS 1.4  =  $450

35mm AFS 1.4 =  $1799

Anyone care to explain?????

That's easy.   The level of optical complexity goes up steeply with larger aperture and shorter focal length.

Since complexity and construction are NOT linear, you can't expect cost to be linear.