More Nikon patents filed in Japan

Patent application 2010-026469 (filed in February 2010) is about a built in rear lens cover - similar to the body mount/sensor cover patent discussed here - the corer is deployed automatically once the lens is removed. The interesting part here is that the lens release button is located on the lens (item 54 in the first drawing) and not on the body (Nikon's EVIL camera is expected to have the lens release button on the body):

Patent application 2010-035145 (filed in February 2010) is for a folding display which will double the size of the camera's LCD screen. The extra real estate could be used to display additional information:

Two more after the break:

Patent application 2010-039025 (filed in February 2010) is for a new flash design - the actual flash is built in the camera, a mirror is extended and can be adjusted to point the light in different directions (click on images for larger view):

Patent applications 2010-032700, 2010-032701, 2010-032702 (all filed in February 2010) are for a 28-300mm FX zoom lens:

f 28.7 96.6 291.9
Fno 3.6 5.5 5.9
omega 76.5 24.1 8.2
Y 21.6 21.6 21.6
TL 162.728 207.565 235.927

Patent applications are not guarantee that a specific product will come to life. The above patents were filed in Japan I cannot link directly to each of the entries (their website doesn't have direct permalinks). Thanks to B. for helping me interpret those patents.

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  • D40-owner

    3 amazing innovations in one post??.. :)))
    – Auto-close rear lens cover and auto-close camera body cover should have existed since the dawn of the F mount. I have wished for this many, many times when changing lenses outside.

    – make the built-in flash vertical, and use bounce or straight-to-front with a mirror! Wow, simple and very innovative! Will drain your batteries if you bounce a lot, though…

    – fold out screen is a killer for checking images accurately, but moving parts don’t like to be abused, so I’m not so sure….

  • Canon Fangirly

    Oh my, a 28-300! That’s exactly what we need since all other lenses are up to date.

  • John M

    That 28-300 patent makes me suspect that this lens would be about the same size (and probably weight) as Canon’s. Alas, that’d be a bit heavy for folks looking to travel light.

    I sure hope I am wrong!

    • PHB

      I can’t see the point of moving to FX if you are then going to get a superzoom. If you care about weight and the reach of your zooms the DX format is always going to be better. And I would bet that by the time it arrives you will be able to get an EVIL camera body and equivalent lens for the same price.

      Since getting the 35 and 50 primes and the 10-24, I find myself only using the 18-200 for longer shots anyway. And that will probably go away as soon as I upgrade my teles (which is currently waiting on AFS options for the 85 and 80-400).

  • Hendog

    28-300 for FX. VR no doubt. A coinciding release with the D700 replacement perhaps? Not holding my breath till next year for either. Superzooms like this generally hold less appeal to pro photographers i.e. D3 users; thus it must surely be aimed towards the future (slightly less pro) D700 market.

    • Hendog

      More interestingly it might be aimed to compete with the already mentioned Canon 28-300 rather than similar, lower spec previous Nikon offerings (18/55-200 dx, 28-200 fx) which would be interesting since Nikon currently lack of such a zoom.

      • Cold Hands Luke

        It’s always seemed odd to me that Canon’s 28-300 is an L lens. A lens with that zoom range is going to have lots of compromises, putting a red ring on it and calling it professional seems a bit dishonest. (Just looked up the price – ouch!)

        I hope Nikon don’t feel tempted or pressured to do the same with theirs. Give it the same build quality as the 18-200 or 70-300, make it shorter than the 70-300, price it about the same as the 18-200 is now (and cut the 18-200 price, it’s too much) and it should be a winner. Oh, and 67mm filter size if possible (does the patent say how big the front element is?)

        • Cold Hands Luke

          Basically, I’m hoping they’re competing with Tamron’s 28-300 rather than Canon’s.

        • Bt

          you obviously don’t know how much it costs to put a red line on a black or white lens, or that red plastic has been shown to improve your photos!

    • that would be lens for FX D90, not überpro d700x

  • Anonymous

    You know what would be really cool? If this company would actually deliver something not just file for patents. They can have the best patents if they don’t have products!

    • Anonymous

      so true…. I am going to start doing up sketches on napkins and filing patents..same difference really.

    • jose


      Before to introduce a new equipment nikon need to register petends.


      José V López

      • zzddrr

        jose, I think what Anonymous was trying to tell us is that Nikon has too many “out of stock” items. Now these are already existing products.

  • Anonymous

    NRAdmin, you missed the one with the slim leaf shutter.

  • zeissgit

    Acch no way they’ll release a d700 before a new top-pro body. The D4 undergoing field-trials i hear. The next year thing is a distraction from it using the D700 speculation.

  • i_want_a_D900

    35 elements ! WTF!

    Compare the lens block diagrams to the Canon 28-300mm here:

    The canon 28-300 use 77mm filters. It does seem like the Nikon would also be at 77mm in the front – size of the front element seems comparable.

    This is NOT going to be a small or cheap lens.

    • i_want_a_D900

      my bad. it is 19 elements and 35 surfaces.

      • fork()

        No worries, an honest mistake.

        For comparison: The 18-200 has 16 elements, but price scales with the element diameter to the third power, so the FX compatibility will definitely make it more expensive. I’m very, very interested, though 🙂


  • nikonuser

    This is what? The third patent in the last 10 years for a 28-300mm lens? Perhaps when a lens designer keeps on creating tweaked versions of the same lens, it means that they are serious about that lens: they are working on it and it will be produced. Good theory or not?

  • Great! Double screens, as if we don’t have enough techie distractions already.

  • Mike

    Dual screen! Me thinks a Nikon engineer bought his/her child a Nintendo DS and had a eureka (!) moment! Flash bounce is cool. 28-300 might be heavy, but surely lighter and less hassle than traveling with multiple lenses!

  • Astrophotographer

    For the 28-300 – TL 162.728 is total length from front element to image plane. So the lens itself would be around 130mm long.

    Whether any of these come to market or not it shows Nikon is innovating.

  • i_want_a_D900

    The 24-70mm is 133mm long in comparison. From the patent at 300mm FL this lens is going to be about 210mm long, comparable to the 70-300VR fully extended i think.

    If this lens is semi pro build like the new f/4 VR line, I guess it would weight around 2-2.5+ pounds and sell for a bit more than the 16-35VR. With a 77mm front element, this lens probably won’t be priced like a 18-200VR.

  • zzddrr

    What do you think of this; one week from today on June 14 will be exactly 8 months since the last dslr announcement. Back to 4-5 yrs this did not happen with Nikon to spend 8 months without a new product in their most profitable segment. This is a bad sign. I think Nikon is in a deeper shit than before they announced their first FX. This for sure takes longer.

  • Lance

    This is the 18-200 (27-300) equivalent for FX. I would like to see it relatively small and light, to keep handy for when a small prime won’t do. I doubt that will happen, it will probably be a big heavy thing. I love my little 28-200 FX lens. Small and light, it has some distortion, but it’s there when I need it. Now that distortion correction is to be built into Lightroom 3, it doesn’t matter so much what the lens does, LR will fix it.

  • longtimenikonshooter

    with apple’s iphone taking away p&s biz, what nikon’s next bread & butter gonna be?

    • preston

      Very true! All of my friends that used to carry around point-and-shoots now just carry around their ipone, and with the improved camera on the iphone 4 they don’t expect to have to buy new PAS’s (similar to POS’s). Note – Nikon, please focus on dslr’s, the point-and-shoot market is moving towards phone integration!

  • ashley dudd

    i think they are making new larger lens mount. actually, the narrow nikon f mount couldn’t handle the modern wide apeture lens like 70-200 vr II. if nikon built new lens mount, we’ll see distortion free higher quality lenses for the future.

    • I am surprised that not many readers picked up on the patent – this could be huge, we are talking about a new Nikon mount and it appears that it is different than the potential EVIL mount. Maybe medium format?

      • Richard

        Patent is so bad for development, time to stop them.

        We started with patent in another time, in a different world.

      • Chris

        In that shape of the camera body? The sketch looks like an SLR and not an medium format camera.


        • you are right, the body is just a sketch – the patent is for the mount and they can draw any body shape with it, it doesn’t mean that it will be for a DSLR (or maybe medium format DSLR – like the Leica S2)

        • Discontinued

          Most medium format camera are SLRs (Single Lens Reflex) too.

      • Discontinued

        A built in rear lens cover sounds like convenient food for people that would not change lenses otherwise and do not want to handle too many items. Could be for an EVIL, to make it even more convenient . Keeps the lens smaller too, than an extra cover. P&S have similar automatic covers for their front lenses.
        I doubt this could be meant for MF.

      • PHB

        Nope, I think you are failing to account for the way in which patents are written (I hold one patent, have six pending and work as an expert witness in patent disputes).

        The patents will be prepared by individual engineering groups working on very specific problems. A single product may give rise to more than one patent.

        In the case of the lens patents and the EVIL patent, the objective may not be to obtain protection. The ideas don’t strike me as very innovative in many of the applications. Quite a few are probably design rather than invention patents. There are good reasons for filing such patents, but you would not want to have a patent on the rear lens cover idea to be confused with lesser claims.

        I would not expect every detail of the EVIL camera to go into the EVIL patent. It is most likely that the rear lens cover is for the EVIL camera.

    • D40-owner

      That’s an ignorant remark.
      The F-mount can handle stuff like an Noct 58mm f/1.2, it can take an AF-S 200mm f/2, basically crazy light-gathering lenses. Oh, did I forget the 300mm f/2.0s ED-IF ?

      • D40-owner

        Oh, and did I mention those 3 lenses have amazing image quality? Have you ever seen samples from the 200mm f/2?

        • ashley dudd

          Yea, Nikon optics were excellent. However, they aren’t up to date. They are not making AF 50/1.2 N or AF 300mm f/2.0 N because it cannot handle the digital image sensors. That’s why they need to widen the lens mount. If you look at the ass side of lenses, larger apeture lenses are taking all of the space available by narrow lens mount. That is the point what I am talking about. If they can place bigger diameter of lens elements in that area, the image quality will be improved a lot. Also, that is the weakest point of nikon old lens mount when we compare with Canon EF Lens mount.

          • D40-owner

            Dude, I’ll repeat: Have you ever seen samples from the recent-enough 200mm f/2 AF-S VR at 100% pixel view, wide-open? It will blow your mind.

  • Chris

    The extendable display is as the display on the D5000 one of the worst ideas Nikon had! That would be an reason for me not to buy the specific camera.

    The closing-mechanism sounds nice, but I hope that there will not be a break in compatibility of the lens mount / bajonett like some years ago at Canon. Think of all those who purchased a new D3s, D3x or both and some expensive lenses like the 400mm f2.8. If Nikon will release a new bajonett in a couple of years the system will die out and the second hand prices will fall into an abyss. That doesn’t sound nice.


    • longtimenikonshooter

      So you sell the rumor and buy the blood.

  • D700 (feels like F3)

    these zooms with factor 10+ are madness … just check the 24-720mm by another vendor … why do photographers feel unable to decide, what they want to do, while being on a trip?

  • netidolweb

    nice to see the new EVIL body having FM3 body design

  • mochapaulo

    I really worry about the flange distance. The complicated mount design just makes the lens can’t get closer to the sensor. If so, Leica M may not fit into this machine, not “EVIL” anymore.

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