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The engineers at Nikon have apparently been burning the midnight oil of late, the results of which appear in the form of four new AF-S G-series Nikkor lenses. They include three new zooms—a 24-120mm f/4G ED VR, a 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR, a 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR and an update of Nikon's classic 85mm f/1.4, a killer portrait lens if there ever was one.
The AF-S Nikkor 85 f/1.4G is a lens that makes the day for portrait and low-light shooters alike. When used at its widest apertures, the fall-off between sharpness and melt-away details is enough to make bokeh lovers weak in the knees. And it's an unbeatable short telephoto for low-light shooting. Capable of covering both full-frame (FX format) and APS-C format sensors alike (with an equivalent focal length of 127.5mm), the AF-S Nikkor 85 f/1.4G features Nano Crystal Coatings, which have proved to perform as advertised on previous Nano Crystal-coated optics from Nikon.
Other features found on the AF-S Nikkor 85 f/1.4G include an M/A Focus Mode switch for quick shifting between AF and manual focus, internal focusing, a Nikon Silent Wave Motor system (SWM) for quick and quiet focusing, Super Integrated Coatings (SIC) for improved light transmission and reduced flare, and 9 rounded aperture blades for that "natural look," a.k.a. nice bokeh.
For owners of full-frame (FX-format) DSLRs and SLRs seeking a high-performance, all-in-one zoom for any number of travel or business-related applications, the AF-S Nikkor 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR is well worth considering. Like the AF-S Nikkor 85 f/1.4G, this image-stabilized (VR II) 10.7x zoom is optimized for use with full-frame and APS-C format compact DSLRs from Nikon. (When used on an APS-C format DSLR the equivalent focal length is 42-450mm.)
Along with 4 stops of vibration reduction, the AF-S Nikkor 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR features two extra-low dispersion (ED) glass elements and three aspherical elements for improved sharpness and steep dampening of coma and chromatic aberrations and focusing down to 18" at all focal lengths.
Other features include a Nikon Silent Wave Motor (SWM) for quick and quiet focusing, an M/A Focus Mode switch for quick shifting between AF and manual focus, internal focusing (IF), Super Integrated Coatings (SIC) for improved light transmission, color consistency and flare reduction, a zoom-lock switch to keep the lens at minimum size during transport, and 9 curved aperture blades for natural-looking, out-of-focus highlight details (again... nice bokeh).
The AF-S Nikkor 24-120 f/4G ED VR is an update of Nikon's original 24-120mm zoom. Designed to cover a full-frame (FX-format) DSLR or SLR, the AF-S Nikkor 24-120 f/4G ED VR is equally at home on a smaller DX-format Nikon DSLR, on which it is the equivalent of a 36-180mm lens.
Some of the improvements found on the AF-S Nikkor 24-120 f/4G ED VR include Nikon VR II image stabilization, Nano Crystal Coatings, two extra-low dispersion (ED) and three aspheric lens elements for improved color, sharpness and reduced coma and color aberrations, internal focusing (IF), a Silent Wave Motor (SWM), an M/A Switch for easy shifting between manual and AF and you guessed it: 9 curved aperture blades for natural, good-looking bokeh.
The fourth lens on the list is the AF-S Nikkor 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR, which is specifically designed for use with DX-format (APS-C) DSLRs from Nikon. This compact zoom, which has an equivalent focal range of a 82.5-450mm lens, features Nikon's VR II image stabilization, a Tripod Detection Mode that steadies your image when shooting on a tripod, an HRI (High Refractive Index) lens element that helps maintain optimal contrast levels and two extra-low dispersion (ED) elements for optimizing color and reducing coma and chromatic aberrations.
Other features include a Nikon Silent Wave Motor, Nikon Super Integrated Coatings, a minimum focusing distance of 4.6' at all focal ranges and all together on the count of three—one, two, three!—9 curved aperture blades for natural, good-looking bokeh!