Weekly Nikon news flash #170

  • Apparently Nikkor lenses work just fine on a Pentax SLR (image sent by a reader).

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  • Art

    Hmmmm instead of going out and shooting some pictures, I’m sitting here reading NR thinking about going out and taking pictures.

    What a life….

    • But still better than beeing out shooting pictures and thinking about going home to read NR. That’d be weird.

      • Not Suprised

        Haha.. maybe.

        But you can’t be too sure just how much some people are waiting for the D400 & D600! *Out in the field* “Oh my D300; how I long for the D400.. hmm… I wonder what NikonRumors is posting right now. *Leaves field*

  • Dweeb

    Is it April Fool’s?

  • Michael

    I just tried to put the 35 1.8DX onto my Pentax ME Super without any luck (I was very careful not to damage anything). How did they manage to mount that lens? Also, wouldn’t the lens be stuck at f/22?

    • Not Surprised

      This looks like a MODIFIED manual camera/Pentax P50 fit with Nikon lenses after a modification. Or possibly just held into place somehow. But Nikon lenses wouldn’t work on modern Pentax bodies with full auto, etc, etc. All these major brand lens/body swaps require modifications of the body or lens or an adapter.

    • Tomaszsz

      Hello, it’s my picture, i mount 35/1.8 with any modification, i put “something” to block aperture at 1.8. Sorry I am bad in english. There is infinity focus and manual focus work great.

      • Thanks for the picture – I could not contact you for more info because I did not have your email.

    • I’ve been using manual Nikkor 180/28 on Pentax K20D with no problems, with absolutely no modifications.
      Focal flange distance for F-mount lenses is 1mm longer than K-mount, both mounts are the same diameter. The trick is to mount F-mount lens upside-down – white mounting dot should face the floor. Most lenses won’t lock (do not force it), but they’ll hold on the mount. The best combinations are Pentax bodies without mechanical aperture couplers (all digital models, some MZ/ZX film bodies) and pre-AI and AI F-mount lenses. Other combinations might get stuck or some damage to electrical contacts on the lens and/or aperture coupler on the body might occur.

  • raizee

    Is it most likely that the D7100 will get the 24MP sensor of the D3200, or is it more likely that it will get a totally different higher MP sensor?

    • Geoff_K

      I doubt it will be higher than 24.

      • raizee

        Well, if they’re gonna use the 24 MP sensor of the D3200, they have to do some serious tweaking of the sensor itself, or the processing software… because the 16MP sensor of the D5100/D7000 is noticably better than the 24MP sensor with regards to ISO performance.

  • fjfjjj
  • Jon D

    I just received my copy of the Nikon version, seems fairly similar to the Nikon 24-70 but a little wider with more barrel distortion up tot 28 and slightly more vignetting. Very sharp with and without VC. It definitely helps video stability. Stills at 1/20 to 1/60 are way sharper with VC. It is parfocal, the Nikon is NOT, which is also helpful for video. This is my first non-Nikon lens, but it seems well built with good optics.

    My question/issue is that I noticed that when zoomed to 70 with the barrel extended, if you look at the end that attaches to the camera, a lot of circuitry is exposed around the optics. This looks like the circuits for the VC with boards, ribbon cables, stuff you would see inside a computer. Could any dust, debris, etc. fall out of this area and into the sensor of my new D4 during heavy use? It looks clean, but there is a potential space which is not sealed further back along the barrel that could potentially collect and allow to enter the camera sensor area. For this reason alone, I am considering returning it. All my Nikon lenses are sealed where they attach to the camera. Does anyone have any experience with other lenses of this design? Otherwise, it seems very nice. I also posted a similar comment on the forum before this became today’s blog post.

    • NoWorry

      … with all that money you saved on this fabulous Tamron lens…
      you can afford paying Nikon service for several sensor cleanings 🙁

    • I’m looking at the Nikkor 24-70, and though this lens might save me several hundred bucks, it leaves me cold. I’d rather have a stronger, more solid Nikkor without VR/VC than a plasticy Tamron with it. Seems like an extra piece of glass between the subject and the sensor and something else to break.

      Guess I’m old school; my “VR” technique is to brace against something solid or stand still with my feet wide apart, hold my breath, then release the shutter as lightly as possible. 🙂 I can often shoot one or two stops slower this way, and still get decent results.

      • David

        You can’t do that for video though. And with video now being popular in the d4, d800 and upcoming d600, it makes sense to have VR standard focal length lenses now.

        • Ed Rehfeld

          What, you can’t hold your breath for a video? Whatever happened to dying for your art? 🙂

          Good point about the video, but I’m more concerned about the still images; rarely shoot video.

      • Dave Wujcik

        You really don’t want to hold your breath… your own pulse will cause you to shake… you’re supposed to exhale slowly as you press the shutter/trigger/etc…

        It’s one of the things that really upped my accuracy and precision when shooting on a rifle team…

        • Ed Rehfeld

          Interesting. I never thought about that, but it makes sense. I’ll give it a try the next time I’m shooting in low light. Thanks for the tip, Dave!

  • Woah, the Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 is $1,299 ?!?! You can easily find used Nikkors for just a couple of hundred bucks more.

    • Geoff_K

      The Nikon doesnt have VR and this can be useful for some/many.

      • Arie

        I don’t doubt that VR is useful, but the build quality of the two lenses is worlds apart – this lens for instance looks like it’s plastic and extends out to zoom. Not to mention that resell value of Tamron and Sigma lenses is nowhere near what Nikon is so I don’t see why they are charging so much.

        • Calibrator

          > so I don’t see why they are charging so much.

          First, as a seller you can always lower your price but getting it back up is more difficult.
          Second, Sigma also has increased their list prices (at least in Germany) to nearly Nikon-levels. They try to appear more professional this way (some lenses are very good or unique so they may also have a reason).
          However, Sigma lenses usually sell fort 20-30% less than that and I doubt that this Tamron will be any different.

          I’m still interested in reading performance reviews of this lens but the “open area” bit above worries me, too. I think this is a sign of cheap construction.

          • Not Surprised

            Well.. The Tamron sells for $1299 — not “20% less than that”. (So its list price is probably 20% higher, by your theory).

            $1299 is what it actually is being sold for.

            • Calibrator

              If it sells for $1299 right now it sells for the official US list price (which is less than the list price in Germany, by the way, and you also get one additional warranty year…).

              It’s a brand new product after all and a good selling tactic is to keep the price initially high to first get the customers who waited for the product.

              After a short time I expect the sales price to drop significantly, because lots of people won’t pay the $1299 and buy Canon/Nikon instead (those people not needing nor wanting the VR) and you need a bigger price difference to get these type of customers.

              However, the list price (!) will very likely not be reduced by Tamron – the price dealers have to pay will rather be dropped.
              What you finally have to pay is up to the individual dealer unless Tamron established fixed prices (which I haven’t heard about).

        • Ray

          My Nikon 24-70mm extends out when it zooms too, at anything wider or longer than 50mm, so the Tamron doesn’t look any worse in that regard.

          • Ben

            nikon needs to replace the 24-70 with a new one that has vr and does not extend when zooming.

          • Arie

            Nikkor version only extends a little bit. This one looks like it’s like the 18-200DX. And it’s a much more solid body.

            Once I go full frame I guess I’ll have to wait and see what’s available and what pricing there is but as much as I love VR/OS/VC/IS , I can’t justify spending $1300 on a Tamron.

            Currently none of my lenses have VR so I’d love for at least one to have it for situations like I was in last weekend where I I had to zoom in to take long exposures (fireworks, buildings, etc) and even though I had a tripod, I was on a bridge that would shake.

            Magic price for me with this lens would be $900.

    • iamlucky13

      Compare new to new.

      The list price on the Tamron is 2/3 the cost of the Nikon. That’s quite a bit of savings. And the Tamron’s MTF chart actually looks just a hair better wide open than the Nikon’s, while hinting at less chromatic aberration. The sample images (taken on a 5DII, I think) on the Tamron site aren’t quite perfect, but they’re very close.

      Not a major surprise. Tamron has historically had some darn good lenses. Not all of them, but enough to know that when they knuckle down to it, Tamron can make a top-of-the-line lens.

      They’re going to have to knuckle down for this model. With a professional full-frame zoom, they’re aiming for a part of the market that doesn’t tend to accept quality compromises just to save a few hundred bucks, especially for what is potentially one of a shooter’s most heavily used lenses.

      • this lens looks great. and looks to be a great value. but lets not overstate it. Tamron has historically made some pretty shotty glass. this lens is a new leaf for them. sigma has historically been the best option for high quality 3rd party glass. I hope this is a sign of things to come, but up to this point tamron has made some pretty shitty lenses

        • Josh

          I think lens quality of any given serious maker is up to the particular lens. The Nikon 24-70 is also not “the best” if compared with the 14-24 or the 70-200 VRII. When Sigma came out with its 24-70/2.8 it was also expensive but dropped in price considerably. However, we had the same discussions if the lower price would rectify to go with the Sigma instead of the Nikon. All my lenses are Nikon but I never went for the 24-70. I once had the Sigma 24-70 which wasn’t too bad for the price I paid but then the AF broke in middle of a shooting. A lady at Sigma told me, that mine was not an exception. Thus after repair I sold it of.
          VR is tempting for me as I often shoot available light, even more so as the D800 is more sensitive concerning motion blur. I’m glad to see the Tamron, for if not anything else, it is at least good to push Nikon to revise theirs.

        • Pablo Ricasso

          Cheapo 60 – 300 manual focus = copied by probably every other third party lens maker but not matched by any of them…
          90 f 2.5 macro exceeded only by the bokina, available in mf and af…
          90 f2.8 macro allows 1:1…
          20-40 f2.7-3.5 actually goes all the way to 20 and stays a f2.7 past 28, (where you really need the thing) and has less distortion than the primes it runs across. Small too…
          There are many others

      • Arie

        You’re forgetting resell value in the mix. 2 years ago I bought the 14-24mm f/2.8. It was selling for about $1600 new. Now it’s up to almost $2000. not counting my old 55-200mm VR lens, every Nikkor lens I have owned has either held its value or gained in value which is unheard of in electronics. In contrast, my two Sigma lenses that I sold were sold at a 20% loss. Tamron is even worse.

        Maybe this will be a great lens but I sure am not going to be the test dummy especially at this price point.

        • iamlucky13

          I’m not forgetting it. I’m just leaving it out for simplicity. Among other factors, a large proportion of buyers simply don’t factor in resale value to purchasing decisions, either because they have no near term plans to resell the product, or because the primary factor is the amount of money they can afford to spend right now.

  • Robert M

    I’ll bet that the Nikon F made out of paper is still sturdier than a Canon Rebel. 😛

    • Bill Lise

      It appears that the link given goes to a blog page that describes an _F4_ papercraft kit that was used as a promotional item. My guess is that even it is not available, but I would sure jump at the chance to get one, having owned an F4 in the past.

  • T.I.M

    So, B&H is now selling photo products ? Great !

  • Mock Kenwell

    Got my D800 from Amazon. Cancelled from B&H after 5 months and crappy communication. With a 24mm 1.4 on it, this bitch is sharp. Shot interiors today with a 5 flash Yongnuo set-up. Hope all you back order warriors get yours soon. Loving life.

    • MRGABE

      hey Mock,

      I’m trying to get into photographing interiors. do you have a website?

  • Rich In tx

    $1300 for a tamron? Are they smoking crack? That’s within $500 of the real enchilada. No way I buy a third party / generic lens for that much scratch lol

    • Calibrator

      > No way I buy a third party / generic lens for that much scratch lol

      When it’s the only 24-70 on the market with image stabilization for Nikon then it’s not a “generic lens”. Tamron was very clever to include this and *will* sell a lot of units – to people not minding using third-party-stuff when it’s indeed better (compare with the review of the Solmeta GPS unit!).

      Therefore I’d be interested in its performance before I disqualify it – and it may become a bit cheaper in the future (unlike Nikon lenses).

    • Not Surprised

      I thought that Tamron was actually made up of a group of disgruntled Nikon engineers originally, wasn’t it? Anyway, some of their recent lenses, such as the 70-300VR are doing particularly well. This lens seems to have quality.

      But the main problem with 3rd party lenses is that sometimes they don’t work right when the 1st party manufacturer updates its firmware. So its happened quite a few times that the lens chips need to be updated. That could be a real drag if it happens to you with these more technology/chip based lenses.

      • Mike

        Nope, that’s Tokina.

    • Ray

      Tamron have been putting out some very nice lenses lately. If I didn’t already have a 24-70mm I’d very much be considering this. If it turns out to be noticably better, I might switch anyway.

      Their 70-300mm is better than Nikon’s equivalent too, I recently picked that up and am very happy with it.

    • Mexican Drug Lord

      I’ll buy one.
      I smoke crack.

    • PeterO
    • iamlucky13

      Not everyone is willing to spend an extra $600 for the Nikon (which MSRP’s at $1889, not $1800). Even if the Nikon is clearly better (looking at the sample images and MTF charts, I’d say it’s probably a very close competition in reality), each person has a different price/performance threshold.

      $600 is a big difference for a lot of people.

      Not to mention, Tamron’s timing on this is pretty darn good, considering there is expected to a lot more budget-minded Nikon full-frame users showing up this fall…

  • dark side?

    looks like the 200 dollar off the D800 with select lenses has now made it’s way to amazon, adorama, etc….. Too bad they won’t ship to China.
    Here in China, the D800 is 4000USD (roughly after conversion from RMB) and the 5DIII is only 3000USD

  • Greg

    I find it absurd to need a big spiral cable to a hotshoe mount just to geotag a photo. That cable is transmitting something like 20 bytes per image?

    Nikon’s gotta find another peripheral strategy. At the vey least add data pins to the hotshoe…

    • Zendo

      There is a good 3rd party solution: the Foolography unleashed (http://www.foolography.com). I use it since more than one year and it works very well. You tag every photo direct at the shoot and you can use nearly every bluetooth tagger.

      • Greg

        I tend to log a track with a separate device from AMOD, then synchronize with my images later through Aperture, but this looks like it might be a nice solution– particularly if I can find a unit that outputs compass bearing. It adds another $200 to the geotagging solution, but getting Bluetooth remote release to work would make this a slam dunk.

        What GPS are you using? Is the Bluetooth in this strong enough that you can leave the GPS is your bag and it will maintain connection to the camera.

        I do wish Nikon would provide a better in camera solution though. Bluetooth in the camera would be an obvious approach. Data pins on the hotshot would be another alternative, but I hate that I only have one hotshot and one release port and everything wants to connect to those two points.

      • Calibrator

        It’s essentially only a Bluetooth transmitter to connect to a Bluetooth-enabled GPS-logger. This – and the design – result in both pro and contra:

        – hot shoe still free (a major pro!)
        – small & light (on the camera)
        – no cable required

        – you need a separate GPS-logger (with bluetooth)
        – you have to monitor the battery of the GPS-logger, too, as only the transmitter uses the camera battery
        – the GPS jacks on some bodies aren’t really suited for this unit which results in some people completely removing the cover for the jacks and others cutting holes into it (not really elegent)
        – no compass direction or other advanced features like a level

        In my opinion these units are also quite expensive for what they do and considering that one also needs a separate GPS-logger, but of course this is a small-scale production article and it’s indeed very miniaturized so there is some merit in it.

        I actually thought long and hard about getting one myself but ultimately decided against it and bought the Solmeta Geotagger Pro. Which is even more expensive (go figure! ;-)) and I’m very happy with it.

        I agree with Greg, however, that the hot shoe & cable combination isn’t ideal, even though Greg wrongly assumes that the cable is only being used for transmitting a few bytes for each picture – the Solmetas continually stream the GPS data to the camera and they get power with it.
        My “ideal” solution would indeed be more like the Foolography or the new WLAN units for the new Nikons: Sticking to the side of the camera, not blocking the hot shoe – and no separate logger, of course.

  • Any hints on the likely release date of the D600 yet? After 5 years of backpain with my D3 Im starting get really tired.. I want FF and I want it small.

    • I expect the D600 before Photokina (September).

      • Samizdat2003

        That is very exciting to hear. I think I’m Nikon’s target consumer: a non-pro dabbler (I have a D90) interested in getting into full-frame but not willing to spend USD $3K to do it. If the D600 really sells for under $2K (and is well reviewed) I’ll seriously consider it.

  • @Danonino,

    Small full frame options abound, like the Olympus XA.

  • Jorge

    Well I got my D800 three weeks ago. And the image quality is OUTSTANDING but the QC that went into building it just plain sucks a big one. left focus point is off, the center is not as sharp either when compared with a live view shot. Though I have to say I took it instead of my D700 to my grandsons birthday party outdoors on saturday and the images with the D800 and my 24-70f2.8 shot in both FX and DX were nothing short of spectacular. The clarity, and depth, and the DR are just amazing — as long as I stay above F5.0 – I have a wedding out of the country in a few days but when I get back I plan on driving it up to the Melville NY offices of Nikon for service.

    • fjfjjj

      Buying a camera that can’t be produced in significant quantities should tell you something as a buyer. I’m waiting for the D800 until the first price drop, not because of money, but because of what it will mean about manufacturing.

      • Pablo Ricasso

        Yah, I was going to buy a Jaguar, but then I noticed that I hardly ever see those and I thought about what it said about the company, so I bought a Chevette instead…

        • fjfjjj

          Yeah, Jaguars are also problematic.

      • Alan

        The first price drop just means they’re desperate to sell a weak product. I’m waiting until they announce they’re going to discontinue it to be sure they have fixed all the production issues they’re ever going to.

  • Now look at the price of refurbished & used D800s…

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