Arrived with a defective tripod collar
Rated 2 out of 5
Unfortunately I did not notice until after the return period expired that the tripod collar was defective as it would not completely tighten up. I did not notice this immediately because I don't use tripods. I advise all new owners of this lens to test not only the sharpness of the lens (which I did and it looks good), but also every other aspect of the lens to make sure everything works as it should and nothing is wrong before your return period is expires. For a $14K lens, I am severely disappointed in Nikon's quality control and the most expensive purchase in my life has become a huge headache in trying to get fixed.
Silent! Light! Fast Autofocus, Excellent IQ
Rated 5 out of 5
First thing you notice - it's light. It's *very* light - you can easily hand hold for long periods, the balance is perfect. Next thing you notice is that the autofocus is dead silent and fast - and accurate (on a Z9 at least) even when wide open. Images snap into focus without motor noise, and seem to be spot on. Bokeh is smooth. Did a decent job shooting on water with sun directly overhead (better than other glass) - nothing weird, just the inevitable 'flatness'. IQ even with the TC seems excellent, physically though the TC toggle is a slight stretch - I'm sure I'll get used to it, eventually. Until then, I determine if I'm in 400/560mm by looking at the aperture in the EVF (assuming you're shooting wide open). New lens cover is an improvement (faint praise, since I immediately replaced other Nikon long glass lens covers as useless) - although I'm not sure how effective it will be for dust (loose). New lens shade seems okay - although for the cost doesn't appear to be carbon fiber, but still light. Durability may be an issue. Usual complaint - no Arca-Swiss foot - and Nikon has gone to a new mounting screw alignment so existing RRS and others after market replacement feet will not work - you need the dreaded 2 screw to Arca-Swiss plate adapter. New travel case seems okay - it'll look good on the shelf with all the rest, I'm sure... Overall, a very expensive lens, but if weight, IQ, accurate, fast, and silent autofocus, and a 400 f/2.8 and a 560 f/4 in the same lens are important, you won't go wrong with this piece of glass. Looking forward to comparing the IQ with the eventual 600 f/4 - but it may be too late by then - the flexibility of also having a 400mm lens at the same time will be hard to beat, even if you gain an extra 40mm.
amazing performance and image quality
Rated 5 out of 5
As expected, this lens did not disappoint! AF performance is noticeably better than the F versions with FTZ-II and the TC is amazing. Except for when shooting in harsh direct sunlight overhead, I noticed absolutely no difference in image quality with the TC in place.