Service advisory for Nikon AF-S 24-70mm f/2.8 lens in Korea

I have covered the Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 lens light leak few times in the past (see blog and forum posts) and it seems that Nikon is responding to this issue, at least in Korea. This is what we have so far: Nikon Imaging Korea issued this service notice (in English) which basically says that they acknowledge the problem and will fix it for free. My understanding is that Nikon will provide free 24-70 rentals for the duration of the repair (not sure, but I think this offer will be valid for the first 300 claims).

Here is the direct Google translation, you get the idea:

"This phenomenon, under limited conditions, the phenomenon is extremely rare. In normal shooting is not a problem. However, depending on your discomfort occurs if you want products that can be done after the necessary measures."

This is the video illustrating the problem:

No word for now if other countries will follow this service advisory.

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  • Damn!! …and I do some of my best photography with the lens cap on. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Seriously though, I would be more concerned if this problem occurred during long exposures — with the lens cap off. I don’t have sound here at work so I assume he was closing the rear finder cover?

    • This is actually a positive development for Nikon Korea – they provide a good customer service. If you want your lens repaired, send it in, but you don’t have to. I am just curious if other countries will follow.

    • Robert Bertin

      My (USA) 24-70 Nikkor is also light-leaking. I replicated the tests shown on the video and got the same results. I made sure that I closed the viewfinder shutter (D700) when I did the tests. I called Nikon USA and they said that they were completely unaware of the problem – which is really hard to believe. I spoke to a tech floor supervisor who said that Nikon will investigate the problem.

  • longtimenikonshooter

    I have been taping it when doing long exposures. My question is whether we will get recall here in the US.

  • The invisible Man

    I sent mine to Nikon last week, the lens was not keeping the focus when changing the zoom focale (acting as a varifocal lens) the 24-70mm AF-S f/2.8 is supposed to be a “true zoom” (parfocal).
    $1800 for a piece of crap, thank you Nikon…..

    • longtimenikonshooter

      it seems to me that the quality control at Nikon has slipped considerably since they became more financial-driven a few year ago.

      • I think this is true for most of the companies – just look at the iPhone 4.

        • longtimenikonshooter

          iPhone4 is a total design flaw but Jobs has been driven by pure greediness for more financial gains. IMHO this is the turning point for Apple’s fall. What we have witnessed in America recently in every aspect is the so-called unglue-process.

        • Michael

          yes, i do agree – it affects everybody, one month ago i decided to buy Dell laptop, i paid for it 1200 GBP and i got it with dead pixels – brand new laptop with dead pixels!!! It made me mad!!!

          …48 hours later Dell engineer replaced that screen and now everything is ok – but where was QC????

          • jay

            WOW, 1200GBP for a Dell laptop? Things in UK are expensive.

        • Sloaah

          I don’t think this is true at all. Specifically with the iPhone 4, yes this was a major design fault, but it resulted from the use of new and radical technology. The actual problem itself is definitely overblown; but the rest of the phone exudes quality. It feels a far more finished product than previous iPhones or iPods.

          I also don’t think it’s a problem to do with greed either. The corporate culture in company like Apple is one of innovation; everybody feels like they’re part of a bigger thing, a revolutionary concept. The fault arises from this. Think of the number of new ideas Apple introduced? its screen, the new glass design, new internal components, new camera, and the new antenna design. It’s hardly surprising that one of these went slightly wrong (but again, it’s not nearly as bad as it’s made out to be).

          • Sloaah, I agree with you – I was talking about QC: Apple should have discovered that during testing.

    • yrsued

      Then all 24-70’s are crap, because AFAIK, the 24-70 is NOT Parfocal!!

      I guess I must give back all the money I made with this lens over the last two year then…

  • what kind of fix would there be? tape it up underneath?

  • customer

    this is super suck

  • ok, the word “recall” is probably too strong – I changed it to “service advisory”

    • The invisible Man

      Is in Nikon’s lenses any part made by Toyota ?

      • zzddrr

        I guess the invisible ones

  • NikoDoby

    Consumer Reports says you can fix it yourself with duct tape just like the iphone4 ๐Ÿ™‚

    • the funny thing is that you are right Niko, duct tape will fix your iPhone and you Nikon lens, lol

      • NikoDoby

        I predict duct tape will become the next big thing in consumer electronics and people will stand in long lines for days to get their hands on some.

        • Canon Fangirly

          Until there will be a duct tape recall.

          • Anonymous


        • Nicole

          But how much will Nikon branded duct-tape cost?

    • yrsued

      Gaffers Tape is Better!

  • kanghong

    Very disappointing on the issue happen to Nikon 24-70 and 70-200 both lens ๐Ÿ™

  • Son of FE

    Mine works fine. No light leaks except through the big hole on the front. ๐Ÿ˜‰
    228xxx s/n.

  • No problem with mine. Bought it in 2007 (had two repairs on it before though, my fault)

  • Dave B

    Just checked my 24-70 and it doesn’t have this leak. Serial US 2785xx (in case there is a lot of bad serial numbers to be identified). My 70-200 is ok too. Phew.

  • Benk

    I just tested mine and was unable to get the light leak as described in the video. I tested it at ISO 4000 with a 10 second exposure with a flashlight (torch) shining directly on the focus finder. The picture came out completely black. I bought mine last September, serial number 369xxx.

  • It is great that someone spend some if his/her time to show (prove) other users that something is wrong.

    We spent lot of time regarding the Canon 5D Mark II firmware 2.0.3 and especially 2.0.4 to let people know about the problem it had. Not to mention that we also sent our reports directly to Canon (on the first time it was “missed”, but then after some insistence and VERY detailed reports, they took it seriously)

    Fortunately Canon fixed those problems, and that’s how it must be.

    So we congratulate all users and people in general who dedicate and spend part of their time to make something work better or get fixed.


  • Francois Choi

    Serial number is no rerationship. all Serial can be happen. Some user have no light leak, test was be wrong

  • nuser

    tested mine, looks fine

  • Nikki

    I tested mine and it has the same problem. I’m based in the UK and will try to contact Nikon to find out if they fix it for free as well.

  • Nikki

    By the way, while testing, I found out that the zoom ring needs to be in a very precise position at around 55mm on my lens, so it might be worth trying many focus distances slightly above 50mm to replicate this fault.

    • Nikki

      Nikon came back to me and said as the lens is out of warranty, they can’t promise to fix it for free. Thanks, NIkon, for a design fault you don’t want to fix on your own cost for your loyal customers..

  • My lens was repaired by Nikon only last week. They fitted what they call a “Shield Plate” to the inside of the barrel (I hope it wasn’t a piece of tape). The work was completed for free under warranty and according to the invoice it was done in only 1 hour. The part was ready and available – the lens was returned to me within 48 hours and now operates perfectly.

    I do a lot of long exposure work – the EXIF on my affected shots were as follows:

    Nikon D700
    ISO 100
    ND110 10 stop filter

    A long exposure of 20 seconds or more created a massive thick white band in the same shape as the distance scale window in the top left hand corner of the frame.

  • M!

    the electrical tape solution is so simple and elegant.
    btw, i am happy with my 28-70 2.8 ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Eric

    There are two countries named “Korea”, South Korea and North Korea.

    • Francois Choi

      No need to talk about North korea. ๐Ÿ˜€

    • Eric, the website is labeled as “Nikon Imaging Korea” and this is how I reported it.

  • The invisible Man

    I often use a ND400 and never noticed any link on mine, I guess you get only one issue at the time ! (I send back mine last week for varifocal problems)
    Maybe we should start a collection with the bad Nikkor 24-70mm zooms, may worth some money in few years !

  • The invisible Man

    BTW, how can I get back my green invisible icon face ?
    I don’t like that pink face, no point to be invisible if everyone can see you !

  • Vlad

    I tested my lens and unfortunately it has the same problem. I bought it from B&H as USA version. I called Nikon Tech Support and they told me that I have to send them, and they will fix it, and if is NOT UNDER WARRANTY I WILL HAVE TO PAY FOR IT!!! Even if it their problem ๐Ÿ™

    • The invisible Man

      How can your lens have no more warranty if it’s a USA model, this zoom was released only 3 years ago (USA models have 5 years warranty).

      • Vlad

        I had to fill out card and send it to Nikon, and have not done it ๐Ÿ™

        • That is not needed in USA as long as you send a copy of your original purchase receipt.

    • It’s a design or manufacturing fault. I think if you pushed the Sale Of Goods Act in the UK, Nikon would capitulate and fix it for free even if it is not under warranty. They are an organisation who seem to play fast and loose with consumer law if you ask me… I have no idea whether US law protects you in a similar way unfortunately…

      • The invisible Man

        Here we are:
        $1800 for that 24-70mm is actualy cheap because it include:

        – Thousands hours of desing with extremly expensive computers and well paid Japaneses engineers.
        – Production of the lens itself (lenses elements take time and sophisticate machines to be polished.)
        – Assembly, calibration, quality control (well, I don’t know about that one)
        – Worldwide promotion of the product in many type of medias.
        – Repairs under warranty (very costly)

        So, I understand that everyone whant a perfect lens (and I also do) but that light leak issue ( probably nobody would have noticed if it was not exposed on Youtube) will make Nikon’s lenses even more expensive.

        That is also why we pay $140 for a cheap made MB-D80 grip, Nikon have to make money somewhere to avoid bankruptcy.

  • yrsued

    I performed the “FIX” weeks ago, I covered the Window I never look at with Black Gaffers Tape…

    FWIW, I have never experienced this problem in any assignment in the past two years, but the problem is there and I fixed it with two pieces of Gaffers Tape (I have two lenses)

    • I’m sure your equipment now looks very credible.

      • Jay

        It’s field expedient, it works, and doesn’t leave residue. And if you spend a minute or two and custom cur the piece you need, no one will give it a second glance.

        That said, for an expensive piece of glass, it IS inexcusable for Nikon not to provide warranty or out of warranty for design flaws. They did so with the D70 “BGLOD” problem!

  • D700 (feels like F3)

    Quality and service-culture should become an attitude. If not, then the ultimate question os, if the price tags are still justified.

    I wonder, why Nikon and other “high price” corporations are that much defensive.
    A more open minded approach would increase loyalty and would probably many of us feel even more comfortable using Nikon gear.

    i.e. Why don’t they offer a service to check the lens every 90 days and provide a full service to it. Would be a nice option, which is probably only available to professionals. But those of us, who don’t qualify to the official professional programe would certainly like it (and probably willing to pay for it in one way or the other)

  • yrsued

    I also tested the two I have here, with a Speedotron Black Line 1205 pack (Didn’t feel like using the 2403C) and the Leak appeared…

    Both lenses Fixed with the “Korea Fix”, I did this weeks ago, but Gaffers Tape works wonders.

    If Nikon USA does a Service Advisory, I’ll send my lenses in. But not unless Nikon USA pays the Shipping for me. I’m not spending $75 in shipping to fix something that took me 5 minutes and $.10 in gaffers Tape (counting the wasted tape, i cut the tape to cover only the window and surrounding names & Logos.

    • Eric Pepin

      tape works but personally I would be pissed to have to cover my very expensive pro gear in tape to get it to not light leak. Id either live with the light leaks as i dont do long exposures or send it in. Luckily the tiny bit of pro gear I have works fine.

  • I did the test on my 24-70 @ 50 & 55mm, ISO HI1.0, 10s exposure and it appears to be fine.

    I wonder what the problem really is, since some lenses seem to have the problem and others don’t. Oh – as I’m writing this, I realize that maybe I’m just not seeing the problem since I’m using a crop sensor – D300. In the video the problem seemed to be contained to the upper part of the picture – it might be out of frame on my D300.

    Has anyone tested on a full frame and crop sensor to see if the problem is hidden on a crop sensor?

    • The invisible Man

      You are right, you won’t get the leak problem with a DX camera.
      I’ll exchange my D90 DX camera for any D3 or D3x (I know, I’m a nice guy).

    • Vlad

      I have this problem with D700 camera

  • Dweeb

    I do love Google Translation: “The AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm F2.8G ED lens is the bearer of revelation of your own”.

    Now how many other lense makers can claim that?

  • Bruce Little

    This “issue” is a ridiculous non-issue beat-up…

    Guys… the lens cap(s) are ON. No photograph being made in any of these cases.

    Cameras are designed to make PHOTOGRAPHS remember…?

    I have seen no example where this “issue” is actually an “issue” under real shooting conditions with then lens cap removed.

    What a freakin joke…! Go out and create photos..!

    • The invisible Man

      I do alot of pictures with ND400 filters, if my 24-70mm had a light leak it would be a real issue for me.

    • Jesus – people who claim things are ‘ridiculous’ who don’t think for a second that in fact this guy simply proves a point. I also shoot long exposures and believe me it is a REAL issue.

  • Kozล‚owski Artur

    Man, I just love the stoic way that guy from the video makes his point. Just think – he’s got like, over 5000$ worth of prime XXI-century precision machinery in his hands, and it takes bloody DUCT TAPE to fix it? Ha ha ha… damn.

  • HapZungLam

    Is this 24-70 F/2.8 N the same as 24-70 f/2.8G ED?

    • The invisible Man


  • I’ve never had any interest in this lens. I understand the convenience of it, but if you’ve got a 14-24/17-36 and a 70-200… why not save some money and gain control with a 50mm f/1.4? Use your feet.

    Control > Convenience for me… especially for that price.

  • Yi Zhao

    I followed the steps shown in the clip for my Nikon AF-S 24-70mm f/2.8 lens with Nikon D700 body. And I don’t see any light leaking. And I even imported the photo to Nuke (a compositing software) and sample the pixels. There are all 0 value – no light leaking.

  • Andy

    Just tested mine with a bright torch and it has it too. I’m in UK. Not sure if I can be bothered sending it back though.

    • Andy

      The effort and risk of sending it in the post is not worth it IMO. It could be damaged, lost or stolen. I’ve never noticed this problem in any real world shooting situation and a piece of black tape or blocking it with my hand would sort it out in any case.

  • Bruce Little

    Can someone (anyone) post a link to a real photograph under real shooting conditions where this “issue” shows up? I can find NONE… just exposures made with lens caps on.

  • Tested mine on my d90, not quite the same test, but maximum sensitivity, different apertures, and 30 second exposures with the lens cap on, shining a torch to it with no problems. Just grain/noise.

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