Nikon AF-S 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G VR lens patent

I did mention this lens briefly yesterday and today we have a patent for it (in English):


  • Patent Publication No. 2009-19945
    • Published 2010/01/28
    • Filing Date 7/9/2008
  • F = 28.80-292.0mm focal length
  • Brightness F = 3.61-5.87
  • Angle of view 76.3-8.2 °
  • Focus back 38.84-96.07mm

The above patent was filed in Japan and I could not locate it in the US Patent Office database. A similar patent was filed in the US back in 2001, but the lens design was slightly different:

See this forum post for a list of lens patents that never made it to the production line.

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  • Oh, please, please…Nikon make this one for us 18-200VR DX fans who will/have moved to FX.

  • Mehmet

    Seems like Nikon is going to release an affordable FX camera. Because this lens is targeted for consumers.

    • Prosumer

      I know of a pro photog. who still uses a damned D80 with a loose & scratchy 18-135mm at her studio. She earns more than the colleagues 😉

      Professionals do not necessarily use the most expensive stuff. DX3 may appeal to rich amateurs as well.

  • Joe R

    ED and N glass….

    If it’s sharp at f/8, not terribly distorted, and reasonably sharp past 250mm, I’d have to take a look.

    Because it’s a f/5.6, it seems to me it’s probably a cheap lens at something like $1299 with no sealing, no IF, probably plastic to keep weight down.

  • Pat

    This seems like a VR improvement on the old 28-300 lens Nikon had in the film days.

    Looks like a kit lens for the new D900. And it looks like the D900 wouldn’t be too expensive as well (you wouldn’t pair a US$4000 pro grade camera with a 18-200VR type of superzoom). I would guess US$3500 max for the D900 now.

    All the F4 zooms and this lens seems to suggest that smaller-body FX would get cheaper to cater to the masses.

    • chuck

      Did they not pair the D700 with a crap 24-120 VR lense?

      • Hey-nonny-mouse

        Crap but not cheap 😉

  • tim

    I like the optical flat. Easier to clean.

  • chuck

    LOL, Nikon u a bit late to the party! Tamron already there, it had better beat the Tamron by a LOT and or sell for less than 600 bucks. LOL again, we know it won’t sell for 600 more likely 1000 bucks so is it going to be 2x as good as the tamron. Sorry maybe those who care about the name on their lense cap more than money in the pocket will buy it!

    • lorenzo

      If it is better than the competition, why not prefer it over the competition?
      Of course, I would prefer a very good 24-120 + some kind of 100-500 instead…

    • Alfamatrix

      Not the name on the cap..if you bought a nikon cameras was to use nikkor lenses, no??

      • mike

        No, I bought my Nikon camera to take pictures with whatever lenses work best for me.

  • Landscape Photo

    If the D900 & this new lens ever materialize, the first thing I’ll do is a side-by-side low & med. ISO raw comparison with upressed D300 + 18-200mm at various FoV, and repeat with 50mm to see max. possible. I really wonder the IQ difference (resolution, noise, DR).

    I’ve been waiting this setup for 5 years. For landscape photography, benefit of switching to D700 is subtle & D3X price is exhoribitant; therefore D900 seems the only Nikonian way to go.

    18mp DX D400? Oh no, forget it. Most lenses are not up to the task + diffraction + noise or nr… (Final stop of DX, while FX may even see +30mp before diminishing returns)

    • ArtTwisted

      The d700 is hardly subtle. But a D900 would certainly be nice and the D400 will almost asuredly have 14mp just like the d95 or whatever they call it

    • PHB

      The theoretical limiting factors on the DX format are a hard limit of 120MP due to the wavelength of blue light and about 50MP for diffraction. And those are somewhat conservative. If you look at the compact cameras there are plenty of cameras that are 12MP with sensors that are tiny compared to DX.

      In practice the lenses are going to be the bigger limitation. But if you use one of the ultra-tele primes 24MP is in reach for DX and 50MP for FX.

      The idea that DX is not a pro format is bogus. If you look at the Nikon Web site you will see that they have two ranges, pro and consumer, the D300 is listed as a professional model.

      The DX format will not go away soon. But it is likely to go away in about 5 years time as the mirrorless formats take over the consumer space. I would expect the D3000/5000 type bodies to be replaced by the EVIL system. The smaller sensor size and the lack of a mirror sweep means that they can get phenomenal optics that are light and cheap. Essentially Leica quality at Nikon prices.

      The only things you will not get from that setup is better than film low-light performance and ultra-high resolution.

      In the short term I would expect the D400 to bump to 18MP to distinguish it from the MX line, later to 24MP. In the longer term though the MX market and the FX market will be like primes and zooms – advantages to both extremes. And DX will be in the middle, neither one nor the other.

  • Jackc

    umm…. i’m wondering how many serious FF owner will want to purchase this lens… nowadays, most of the FF shooters are amature+ and most of the amature+ wouldn’t care about the super zooms

    just look at Canon’s 28-300 IS… it is damn big and no one really wants it

    and most of the novice shoot DX so 18-200 is good for the novice…..

    • “and most of the novice shoot DX so 18-200 is good for the novice…..”

      Not really imho, if one knows the trick.

    • Ron Krapwell

      What absolute drivel. Check out my website for superior shots obtained with a kellogg’s cornfake box, a pinhole and some double-backed sticky tape.

  • woble

    If it’s like 18-200 I will pass, thank you very much. Zooms with mega range are prone to distortion and quality loss. Better invest in good glass or at least something with less zoom range.

  • Peter Koch

    This is very interesting! With rumors about a cheaper and more compact FX camera and consumer-friendly FX lenses I am starting to wonder if the D300 will be the last pro-rated DX body we’ll ever see. Will the previously rumored compact full-frame be a D300 successor?

    • Prosumer

      You just hit the jackpot. Do you think this type of FX body-lens combo appeal to existing D700 owners, whose prioritiy is mainly low light performance? It’s for the D200 & D300 users who got stuck in the rut for years to make an affordable step up.

    • PHB

      I really can’t see a plastic body FX for some time.

      The D300/s and D700 share the same chassis with only limited mods. The D300 sells in higher numbers than the FX bodies, it has just been updated, so there is no need to lower the price.

      Any FX body is going to have to be more expensive than the D300 for quite a while, so it might as well be a magnesium body.

      Looking at the Canon models, Nikon has to deliver an 18MP FX at about $2500. Which the D900 might be. But if Nikon had an 18MP sensor on the blocks ready, why not use it for the D3s? More likely the D900 is the D3x sensor and will be more than $2500 but significantly less than $5000.

      Given that the D4 is due out next year and this year is a ‘stopgap’ situation. Wouldn’t the logical approach be to bring out a 24MP body and drop the price of the D700 by $400 or more?

  • Nikon please make this lens as tiny as possible, I mean no bigger or heavier than the DX 18-200mm, even it has to be a f/5.6-6.3.

    • mike

      It would have to be f/5-8 to be the same size, wouldn’t it? And when was the last time Nikon made an autofocus lens with a maximum aperture smaller than f/5.6?

  • Jerry

    this will be around 2.5-3k $,

    • Joe R

      There’s no chance it’ll be 2.5-3k. The zoom range is too great for it to be a high-quality lens and as a 5.6 it’s too slow to warrant the price.

      • Roger

        Canon’s only 28-300 IS for full frame costs that much, and is 5.6 at 300mm. Yes, it’s an L, why do you ask?

        • Tamron has got one with image stabilization; we may expect Nikon will have a roughly similar design:

          There are mixed comments about this lens, maybe due to different expectation levels, or simply because of poor QC. Their authorized dealer price is $650. Then the Nikkor can be around $900 unless an extrordinary quality difference is offered.


          • Ron Krapwell

            The Nikkor will be cheap plastic crap with that zoom range, just like the 18-200.

          • mike

            What makes you think Nikon is competing with Tamron, and not Canon?


    I have the Tamron 28-300 VC and like it very much, but the slow AF is the only thing I don’t like about it. So a nicer built Nikon version would be nice and hopefully it will have a tripod foot kind if like Canons version, but a lot cheap in cost.

  • Niko

    With 16-35mm f4 VR, the very possible 50mm f1.2 prime, and now this all purpose zoom for FX body, Nikon has serious plan to counter Canon’s diverse range of lenses. With future release of D700s, hopefully with D3s incredible low light sensor, I would finally migrate from Canon to Nikon.

    • PHB

      Canon’s range looks a lot thinner when you take account of the fact that many are duplicates of the same lens in VR and non-VR versions.

      Canon does not have a bunch of obsolete 1990s primes like Nikon does. Nor do they have a bunch of AF lenses that are great performers but need in lens focusing updates. But they do have quite a few bow-bow-dogs in there. The reviews of the 85 f/1.2 do not make me think ‘hey, that extra 1/3rd stop is worth having’.

      The difference between the companies is that Canon is Microsoft, they want to be first to market. And Nikon is Apple, they want to do it their way (which you may or may not like). So Nikon is usually late, and sometimes does not get there at all, but what they have brought out in the past 4 years has all been stellar.

      However good or bad the Canon zoom is, I can’t see myself wanting to use it as a walk-around lens. And for $2400, I really can’t see myself wanting to buy it unless it produces A1 results compared to alternative primes. Given the size and weight the lens could be a lot better than the 18-200 DX and still a lot worse than a DX body with a couple of quality zooms.

      I don’t think Nikon is at all likely to bring out a lens that was similarly compromised. I have no doubt that they are working on one. But it is highly likely that nothing comes out at all. The 24-120 f/4 looks much more like the type of lens I would want. for an fx body.

  • Crabby

    Nikon wants to have it both ways? Professional-quality DX cameras with specialized primes and cheapo FX cameras with very wide-range zooms that don’t provide pro results. This sort of behavior makes me think about film again.

  • Ubiquitous

    I was excited, at first, with the 28-300 VR. That is until I saw the Canon 28-300 for ~$2,400. If the trend for Nikon holds, this FX lens would run about ~ $2,900. I’ll pas on it. I prefer my 70-200 f/2.8 VR with the 1.4x converter and much cheaper.

    Ooops! I should never say: “I’ll pass on it.” The last two times I uttered the same words of wisdom, I ended up getting the lenses: the DX 35mm f/1.8 and the 16-35 VR f/4 (Pre-ordered.) Therefore, the reported 28-300 VR looks very interesting. I’m getting it, when released, after reading the reviews, the price comes down, used, and before traveling to Iceland and Greenland.

  • Ubiquitous

    I just saw the Canon size and weight for their 28-300 walk-around around, lens: 7 1/2″ folded and 3.2 lbs and no IS. I believe that the “all-purpose” lens was designed with King-Kong in mind.

    • Ron Krapwell

      Stop whining and get in the gym.

  • Chad

    The D9000 will arrive shortly, this pro-summer glass is a perfect fit. Start selling your D700 now gents.. $1500 FX will be arriving shortly.

    • Chris P

      Do you really think that a lot of D700 owners, I’m one of them, are going to sell our cameras in order to buy a ‘D9000’ if it is a plastic body containing a low light performance limited 18Mp sensor? If you mean that the secondhand price of the D700 will drop considerably when the ‘D9000’ arrives and I should sell it now instead of losing money later, then I still won’t be selling, I bought it to take photographs, not as an investment, and as long as I am happy with how it does that it stays where it is.

    • No


  • nau

    as long as it doesnt look like tank-canon

  • PhotonFisher

    I can only hope, that this will not hit the market. It’s a bad compromise.
    A combination of 24-70 (affordable) and 100-300 (affordable) is better.

    If a photographer can’t decide, which lens to attach to the camera …
    In the DSLR space one might expect photographers to make such choice.

    Or am I totally wrong here? The flexibility of a 28-300 does certainly not
    match the hassle to carry it (unless made of plastic).

  • kyoshinikon

    Comparee to the patent for the 28-200 2.8, no but it still has the potential to lower some canon and tamron sales

  • larry

    i saw this lens in person today, a photographer was using it with the badges taped but i was close enough to see that the 28-300 tick marks labeled

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