Breaking: Nikon 70-200mm f/4 lens with next generation VR to be announced next week

Together with the Nikon 1 V2, on October 24th Nikon will announce also a new 70-200mm f/4 lens that will most likely be the first Nikkor lens with the next generation VR system. This lens has been rumored for a while and was supposed to be announced back in 2010/2011, not sure what caused the delay - maybe Nikon decided to pull the trigger after the Tokina AT-X 70-200mm f/4 PRO IF FX lens was introduced early this year (not released yet).

The new lens will be on display during the PDN Photo Plus Expo in New York next week.

In 2011 Nikon filed a patent for a 70-200mm f/4 VR lens.

The Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM lens currently sells for $1,199 after a $150 rebate. Don't expect the Nikon version to be cheaper.

Back in 1982 Nikon did have a 70-210mm f/4 lens.

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  • Price?!

    This thing is gonna sell like crazy.

    • Jaap

      Why? What’s wrong with the 2.8?

      • Christobella

        Heavy and expensive for some. I’ll be keeping mine though 😉

        • Just a Moment

          Calm down.

          According to Admin this will be annouced with the V2.

          Now, where does it say that this is not a 1 system lens?

          • Konichiwa

            I think NEXT generation means VR III?
            Since.. there are already lenses with VR II right?

            • derWalter

              the actual 70-200 has the VR II

              the version of VR can be identified by the color used, “VR” is printed on the lens:

              RED = VR I
              GOLD = VR II

              HF 🙂

            • Stefan

              Unfortunately it is not that simple – the color says more about when the lens was first released. Examples:
              First gen 18-200 DX – red VR but uses VR II technology
              Second gen 18-200 DX – gold VR, same technology
              18-105 DX – gold VR but using VR I technology

          • Not an Idiot

            It’s not for the 1 system. Look at the diagram. Such a large lens with numerous lens elements doesn’t correlate with the ‘feel’ of the 1 system. Imagine putting that lens on your 1 system. It just doesn’t fit.

            • BornOptimist

              Nothing in this diagram say anything about the size, and just because the 1-system is small doesn’t mean the optical design is simpler. This lens could very well have been a 1″ design. It’s the details in the patent that says this is a FF lens – not the diagram.

          • iamlucky13

            The patent application says the image circle radius is 21.6mm, which corresponds exactly to the FX diagonal of 43.2mm.

            Plus, why bother making a big, fixed aperture super-telephoto zoom (190-540mm) equivalent) for a consumer camera that’s designed for compactness? No one has asked for it, but thousands have asked for an F-mount 70-200 F/4 for years.

      • Davide

        Heavy. Pricey. Bulky.

        Just to name a few reason NOT to buy this otherwise magnificent lens

        • Remedy

          What a bunch of stupid arguments. First of all this f4 lens WILL NOT be cheap, WILL NOT be light and WILL NOT be agile. See at Canon’s line up. Is the f4 (especially the IS) version any more comfortable to use than 2.8?

          Think people, THINK!

          • Kerry33

            It will be a lot cheaper than 2.8 version, it will be much lighter than 2.8 version and it will be agile than 2.8 version. Seriously, have u handle 300 2.8 vr and 300 f4? I can carry 300 2.8 for half a day shooting, but for f4 version = all day. Theres always a huge different in terms of weight and cost between 2.8 big brother and its siblings f4.

            Again, obviously you never handle those lens to diffrenciate between them

            • Remedy

              WOW another idiotic argument based on DIFFERENT lenses. Have You ever tried 400 f/2.8 and then 400/4? No? Ofc not. Does that give me right to claim ridiculous statements?

              Take a look at Canon’s line up. 70-200 f/4 is only marginally shorter (less than 2cm) and thiner is diameter, obviously – 67mm thread vs 77mm. The only big difference is weight but I still don’t consider 800g a light lens.

            • Remedy

              oh and regarding the price check how much was previous 70-200 2.8 from Canon (because the new one’s price is from another galaxy like the new 24-70) and check now much then costed f/4. The difference was less than 400$. That’s a lot? Okay….

            • Ano


              Canon has 5 different and current (or recent) versions of the 70-200 lens. It sounds like you’re comparing the Canon f/4 IS to the Canon f/2.8 non IS version.

              There is a HUGE difference between the f/4 IS and the f/2.8 IS or IS II.


            • David B

              Totally Agree with Remedy here. Plus YOU will always think in the back of your mind that you could have owned the F/2.8 and it is there and available and you settled for the 2d best

            • iamlucky13

              Remedy – why are you even bothering to argue this?

              The 70-200 F/2.8 is the better lens optically. No one disputes that. It is also more expensive and weighs almost twice as much in the Canon example. The F/4 may be heavy itself, but an order of magnitude less so.

              It is disingenuous to compare the price and specs of a used non-IS lens to a new IS lens, but what baffles me the most is what reason you could possibly have to do so as blatantly as you are.

              Large numbers of Nikon users have been asking for this lens for years. That’s a fact demonstrated by how often they carry other discussions on NR off-topic with their “That’s nice, but where’s my 70-200 F/4?” posts. In light of that fact, the misleading nature of your arguments doesn’t even matter, because they’re irrelevant.

              I’m sorry that you either can not or or not a reasonable enough person to allow yourself to understand their reasons, but the world does not respond only to your opinions.

          • Michel

            I have one of the old 80-200 AIS 4.5 lens, the second version. It is way lighter that the 80-200 2.8, much more compact, takes a 52mm filter, as does the slightly later model of this lens in f4. The lens I have is wonderful, sharper than the 2.8, pity it doesnt have AF. The new VR 70-200 f4 might really be something great, I hope it at least has a semi pro build and is suitable for FX

            • Jabs

              If I remember right, the first 80-200 F2.8 zoom had 95mm filter size, then they made a newer version (several) with 77mm filter size. I had a 80-200 F4.5 and it did have 52mm filter size but the later 80-200 F4.0 zoom had 62mm filter size and was slightly larger.

            • Michel

              @ jabs Yes of course, the f4 does have a bigger filter size, it is a little bit heavier too as I discovered when I went to mir nikon pages. I love the build quality of these old Nikon lens, and for taking time over a photo they are great, but of course for action the AF and also VR functions help, such as chasing moving objects, using a tripod isnt always an option

          • rkas

            Eh, the Canon 70-200 f4 IS is half the price and half the weight of the f2.8 IS. And its quite a bit smaller too. Just compare the lenses on the left:

          • JMP

            You’ve obviously never used a 70-200 f/2.8.

            The f/4 will be MUCH lighter and a lot cheaper than the very heavy f/2.8 version.

            Canon have had one for years, it’s an extremely good lens, it’s a lot cheaper and it’s one hell of a lot smaller and lighter than the equivalent f/2.8.

            • Mikycoud

              Yen, and handles better too: on the f4 version, one can reach the zoom ring easily with a finger while still supporting the camera with the palm. Try doing that on the 2.8 is or afs.
              Let’s hope Nikon have thought about ease of handling/use in their design.

          • phr3dly

            Compare Canon’s lineup:

            Canon 70-200 f/4 IS:
            Dimensions: 6.8″ x 3″
            Weight: 26.8oz
            Price: $1200

            Canon 70-200 f/2.8 IS:
            Dimensions: 7.8″ x 3.5″
            Weight: 52.6 oz
            Price: $2100

            Nikon 70-200 f/2.8 VR II:
            Dimensions: 8.1″ x 3.4″
            Weight: 54.3 oz
            Price: $2400

            My guess for the Nikon 70-200 f/4 will be about the same as the Canon in all regards, though perhaps a little more expensive.

            That is significantly lighter, smaller, and cheaper.

            • Yes, expect the Nikon 70-200 f/4 to be above $1000.

            • Roberto


            • techmine


            • Rob Banks

              My guess: $1300-1500 in US.

            • mikils

              Weight and price will sure be way better; size it’s not really much different.

            • The Canon 70-200/4 is like ten years old. New lenses don’t come out cheaper than old ones. Even if Canon came out with a new one, it wouldn’t be $1200. My educated guess would be that this will be more like $1800.

              The only way it would be anywhere close to $1200 or less would be if it lacked VR. I can’t imaging Nikon doing that (although I wouldn’t complain!)

            • Lyle

              I hope it is MUCH lighter and great optically because the VR 1 version can be found used for barely over $1000.

      • spider

        Nothing wrong with it i guess. At least the build and performance. It’s all about affordability.

      • Sami

        Nothing is wrong with it. But not everyone can afford the 2.8. A f/4 should be much more affordable.

        • Dave in the USA

          Don’t be so sure. The 16-35 f/4 VR has the same MSRP as the street price of the 17-35mm f/2.8 (prior to the announce of the 16-35 f/4 VR). When the 16-35mm was announced, the price of the 17-35mm 2.8 went up! I suspect that with the Nanocoat and VR III that the 70-200mm f/4 will be just under $2k ($1899 – $1999). Nikon has no concept of inexpensive.

          • Ano

            Maybe you should compare MSRP to MSRP…

            17-35 f/2.8 (no VR)
            MSRP: $1955

            16-35 f/4 VR
            MSRP: $1260

      • Zack Lee.

        This thing will be $1800 and everybody will whine about the price.

        All the whiners wanted a $1000 equivalent to the Canon 70-200/4, but that lens is like six years old. New, this ain’t gonna be cheap. Either that or it’s as crappy as the 16-35mm and cheap. I doubt Nikon would do that. No, I bet this will be compact, lightweight, and very sharp. And not cheap enough to appease the whiners.

        But at least we’ll finally be about to say “you got what you wanted–now shut up”.

        Of course, next to whine will be the 70-400 crew.

        Me…I just want something wider than 24mm and faster than f2 to replace my Sigma 20mm/1.8. And a properly round aperture would be nice too. Everything else I could want, Nikon already makes.

        …except maybe something faster than 6fps with 14mp or more in the DX area. And not that crappy CAM4800.

        • Chico Esquela

          That 16-35 is a great lens. I know two photojournalists wh use it as their main daytime lens.

          And that Sigma wide angle you mentioned? Now THERE’S a slow lens that’s soft in the corners!

          • Discontinued

            And I know one niece and two nephews of one photojournalist who does not use the lens, because it is meant to be crap …

            No wait, I can speak from own experience. I actually own that lens and it is neither great nor useless. It is what it is, a 4.0 wide zoom lens with plenty of barrel distortion at its wide and.

            • D800_is_finally_here

              Sure 16-35 has a lot of distortion, just use LR/PS profile or if you want pixel accurate correction use DXO Optics Pro to clean it up. Other than that the lens is top notch.

              The 0.7 pound in weight saving is not something to sneeze at, when 24-70/2.8 and 70-200/2.8 are already in the same bag!

          • What exactly is slow about the 20mm/1.8? Is it the fast maximum aperture? Slow to focus? On what, a D50?

            Let’s put to bed any whining about softness:

            Now granted, DOF is so thin that parts of the door frame and the door knob fall out of the plane of focus. And maybe a touch of field curvature going on. But there’s sharpness in the corners alright.

            Most of the softness complaints can be attributed to bad samples and misuse. It’s difficult to nail focus at 1.8 with some of the cheaper models of camera. And even my sample was once soft–I broke and when it came back from Sigma repair it was horribly soft. I sent it back again and when it returned it was back to being sharp. So it seems that can be reassemble in such a way that they perform sub-optimally. Kinda like any lens.

            The Sigma 20mm/f1.8 is a wonderful lens that suffers from bad-review-itis. Kinda the opposite of the Sigma 50/f1.4, which has nothing on the Nikon 50s in my opinion.

            The 16-35 is sharp into the corners, but vignettes so much–after trying to recover them in post, you’ll find that sharpness wasted on NR and vignette recovery. I didn’t mind the distortion, but if you wanna fix that too, it’ll rob you of even more sharpness.

            • @Micah: totally agree, the 20, 24, and 28 1.8 from Sigma are, when you do get a good sample, fantastic lenses. Especially when you take into consideration their subject isolation capabilities: with a MFD of just a few inches, you can finally get that (relatively) smooth background bokeh on a WA lens.

      • Size? Weight? Price? 😉

        • kyoshinikon

          Everybody says size/weight/price… Well if te 16-35mm is a preview there wont be any difference in either size or weight…

          • Rob

            The longer the lens, the more you can save in size and weight by making it with a smaller maximum aperture.

            • Pablo Ricasso


      • desmo


        • Pablo Ricasso


      • bert

        This is awesome. If you look at lens history, the 4 was always better than the 2.8. It will be half price too. See how Canon has a huge hit with the 4.0 version. It will be smashing on Nikon too. Finally a reason to dump my 80-200 4.5 Ai.
        If they get it 52mm it is even more amazing.

        • …all the people who claimed the Canon 70-200/4 IS was sharper than the 70-200/2.8 IS were either not comparing both lenses at f4 or were trying to delude themselves, since they couldn’t afford the more expensive lens.

          The 70-200/4 holds its own at the long end, but it’s inferior at the shorter ranges.

          Here’s the magic 300/4 that the whiners are all nagging for:

          It is indeed sharp, but the bokeh is hideous. I prefer my 70-200/2.8 version 1. In fact, I’d prefer my lens with my tc14 over that. Just as sharp and better bokeh.

          • Ralph

            You can’t compare one lens stopped down with one wide open, that’s a rubbish comparison. If you do that then you may as well get a cheap 50f1.8 stopped to 2.8 and compare it to the 70-200f2.8, then you’d call the 70-200 crap.

            • I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to break the rules. Forgive me. Consider two lenses with similar focal lengths un-compared.

        • Actually, the AFS version ain’t bad:

          But the AFS version ain’t cheap either. At VR and it’d be beyond the price most people are imaging for a theoretical 300/4VR

    • Hmm Maybe

      Close focus?

      No heavy breathing?

      No fantasy f number?

      Light weight?

      Job done.!

      But somehow I doubt it. Nikon just can’t get anything right at the moment.

      • Pablo Ricasso

        minus half

    • Sahaja

      Nikon keeps “updating” VR so people will keep wanting to update their lenses.

      If the VR stabilization was in the camera bodies then we’d get an update every time we updated our cameras to a newer model – and not need to buy the “updated” lenses to get it. We’d also get stabilization on all the lenses in the Nikon catalog that don’t have any stabilization.

      I know that Nikon argues lens-based VR is “better” – but sensor stabilization is getting better all the time too – and it has its own plus points.

      I certainly can see how lens-based VR is “better” for Nikon (and Canon’s) profits because we have to buy new lenses to get the “latest generation” VR. Question is, is it best for users?

      • desmo

        lens based performs better

      • Jabs

        @Sahaja – The problem with In Body Stabilization is that it is IN the body to begin with. You are thus forced to rely on body updates to properly stabilize some newer lenses and thus you also are stuck with a – one solution to all – problem.

        Look at the problem that Sony has with their new A99 to clearly see this as backwards especially when a Manufacturer has a very large quantity of lenses of various types like Nikon has.

        Lenses usually have a longer lifespan than many bodies, so putting the VR or IS in the body forces you to wait for the next body which is now useless or worthless, as technology and megapixels has moved on. Look at the value of a Sony A900 or A850 compared to the new A99 as an example compared to newer versus older Nikon bodies!

        The next relevant problem is that the sensor in body stabilization system does not take into account forward and backward movement of the stabilization system, as that would make the lens not focus properly as it would give an improper sensor to lens distance and void the AF reading if the sensor in body actually physically moved backwards and forwards. That is one reason why Nikon’s VR System beats most of the In Body Systems as they cannot react to Yaw nor front to back stability but mainly do side to side – as if you shift the sensor front to back, you would have to also shift the lens front to back to keep the AF in registration = epic fail or a cheap way to do things while overlooking several dimensions in stability, especially in long lenses.

        • Sahaja

          I’m not convinced. Of course Nikon and other companies using lens based stabilization (VR) will tell us it’s “better” than sensor based systems – but I have never seen thorough independent tests that prove this, one way or the other. Do you know of any, and are they recent?

          The problems Sony has with lens compatibility on the A99 are to do with their on-sensor PD auto focus points- not the stabilization, which works fine.

          (The resale value of Sony’s A900 and A850 has nothing to do with this – it is just not a popular or well supported full frame system. Those cameras also lacked live view and several other important features. Despite having a very good OVF Sony has abandoned this for SLT + EVF – and, whatever the merits may be of that, it turns a lot of people off. Why buy into a used system that has little support and no upgrade path you like?)

          Yes lenses have a much longer lifespan than bodies – which I see as a point in favour of sensor based systems. When you upgrade to the latest body all your lenses get the latest VR. You don’t have to buy new lenses to get it. Even lenses with no VR can be stabilized. To me this would be a huge advantage – if Nikon had in body stabilization, then lenses like my 180mm 2.8 and all mu mf AIS lenses, would have VR.

          In body stabilization is also one less point of potential failure in the lens – so the lenses should last longer. (Of course that means one more point of potential failure in the body – but I am more likely to carry a back-up body than back-up lenses)

          I take your point about forward and backward movement. Olympus’ latest sensor stabilization has 5-axis – but then they are using only CDAF on the sensor, so the AF system should account for any change in lens to sensor distance. The same should happen if you have PD focus points on the sensor – which seems to be coming.

          Even if the AF is off sensor, the stabilization system could “inform” the the AF system of the amount of back-front sensor movement and the AF could then micro adjust to take account of this. I don’t know if the AF software on cameras that have sensor based stabilization actually does this – but it would certainly be possible.

          Of course it would be nice if Nikon had both options – then we could use the VR in the lenses when it was available and the sensor based stabilization when it wasn’t.

  • PeterT

    Wow, finally! Great news…

    • Gly

      The new lens will be delayed… then released with a light leak issue… Nikon goes into denial mode for months… then acknowledges issue and slowly initiate repair and maybe recall protocols (if the sn batch is known)… now it’s 2015 and no one cares because the new 80-400 VRII is being released and we go another round.

      It’s always one step forward and 5 steps back with Nikon…

      • Pablo Ricasso


  • Chubby Brunette

    Hell yeah! I was waiting for this! Now only hope for great sharpness!

    • Not too optimistic

      I wouldn’t be too optimistic Chubby.

      Chances are that this is a cheaper lense than the f2.8 and so Nikon wouldn’t want to “hurt” sales of their champion f2.8 lense. My guess is that if this new lense is much cheaper than f2.8 then the sharpness would be significantly lower than the f2.8 sharpness. Otherwise if the sharpness is good then the price difference with the f2.8 will not be so vast. But lets wait and see.

      • Calibrator

        I don’t think that one can generalize here as the new 1.8 lenses are often sharper than their 1.4 counterparts. (Not saying that the 1.4s are bad.)

        • Just for Show

          “(Not saying that the 1.4s are bad.)”

          I am.

          The corners are terrible, vignetting is so haevy that Nikon is really lifting our legs (again!) selling these as 1.4s .

          AF is poor as well.

      • bert

        It will be sharper. Smaller apertures are always sharper. Take the 85mm. The 1.4 is good, but the 1.8 (or old 2.0 AIS) is sharper, and the 85mm PCE is the sharpest.
        Same with the tele-zoom. The 80-200 4.5 AI is still the sharpest tele nikon together with the old 180mm 4.0 Micro.

        • Jabs

          Sorry to disagree but I had the 80-200mm F4.5 (second version) and indeed it was sharp BUT there was another Nikon zoom that was sharper to me and others.

          The 75-150mm F3.5 Series E was sharper but not built as well.

          • michel

            I have both of these lens and while I havent compared images from both intensely, the 80-200 appears sharper, but the 75-150 is much lighter, and focusses significantly closer. Interestingly both these lenses came out with two variants, both of mine are the second edition. The little 75-150E lens was very popular with fashion photographers in the 80’s apparently…

            • Jabs


              On an F3HP, the 75-150 F3.5 was known to be much sharper than the 80-200 F4.5 and yes I had both lenses and shot with them constantly using Fuji Velvia 50D. The 75-150 F3.5 Series E was almost an equal for the 105 F2.5 and that’s my finding plus the opinion of many then. The 80-200 F4.5 suffered less from zoom creep and had a much more robust construction but the 75-150 was much sharper.

            • Pablo Ricasso

              I own a few 75-150s. At first I was convinced they were the best, but I found the 50-135 to be better, and the 70-210 f4 to a much lesser extent.

              I believe the reason that fashion photographers liked the little lens, other that because it was little (and cheap) was because it reached it’s max at f11 while other zooms peaked at f8. With other zooms you were fairly limited to using them at f8, or f8 and f5.6 on a really good lens if you wanted any advantage over this cheap lens. However this lens would do alright even at f 3.5 in a pinch, unlike the f2.8 zooms of the era. It also blew the hell out of the Vivitar series one zooms. But it reached it’s max at f11, giving incredible depth, and was useable at even smaller apertures where other lenses would fall apart from diffraction, negating the need for neutral density filters.
              If you think about it, the lighting in that kind of photography (not that I have any experience) can probably vary from brighter than the sun to very dark quite frequently. And shutters weren’t very fast at that time. Also, that lens and the 50-135 offers you your 85 and wider, your 105, and your 135, in a really small package. I sold my first chipped 85, and some 105s largely because of the lens.
              I look forward to trying the f4.5 lens sometime.

            • Pablo Ricasso

              And yeah, the minimum focus is about the same as any of those primes I mentioned. The 50-135 has a focus of more than five feet like the old 2.8 zooms. It’s my favorite for outside as I seldom want to get any closer than that distance and it has good bokeh at near minimum focus. I think if I shot indoors much I would rather use the 75-150 because of it’s ability to go closer in addition to it’s other attributes.
              The AF70-210 f4is EXCELLENT close up. It and the series E 70-210 f4 are said to be about the same optic as the 80-200 f4 manual focus which is said to be a little sharper than the f4.5 lens. The coatings are better on the AF lens than on the series E and probably much newer than on the 80-200, if not also better.
              I will be surprised if this new lens is less than “incredible.”

            • Jabs

              @Pablo Ricasso
              I owned the 50-135 and the 75-150 plus the 28-50 F3.5 zooms and the 75-150mm was far and away the best of the bunch. I also owned the 80-200 F4.5 and it was much better than the later 80-200 F4.0 62mm filter version and these were all known facts by Nikon shooters then.

              In zooms these were the best then and had them plus used them on three F3’s:
              28-50 F3.5
              35-70 F2.8 AF
              75-150 F3.5 E (stellar reputation almost like the 105mm F2.5 AiS)

              The 70-210 F4 Series E zoom did not have that great a reputation then as the only Series E zoom that was great was the 75-150 F 3.5 Series zoom.

              The reason the 75-150 F3.5 was so popular was because it was SHARP and tests by Modern Photography, Popular Photography and others verified this then. I shot Fuji 50D Pro plus 64T Pro and Kodachrome 25 plus 64 Pro Chrome slide films with it using polarizers and Nikon’s excellent A2 filters and it was awesome. Velvia 50D Pro to me was a lot sharper than Kodachrome, but you would get a fight from people if you said this then. Many shot Fuji Reala print film with this lens and the results were great then.

              I still have the chromes after all these years and the 75-150 F3.5 is almost a legendary lens like the 55 F2.8 Micro, the 58 F1.2 Noct, the 105 F2.5 and the 180mm F2.8 ED-IF. Had them all except the 58 F1.2 Noct and used them all the time to shoot lots of things.

            • Pablo Ricasso

              That’s really interesting because I had two 75-150 lenses and now a third. I have four 50-135 and I swear they are all better. I suppose it depends a lot on your focal distance and how narrow your apertures. With the 50-135 I use either 5.6 or 8 and nothing else, mostly 8. You are less restricted with the other. I notice that the colors are much more saturated with the 50-135. I suppose the difference in the weight of the lenses may also impact people differently depending on their shooting style.
              I agree about the sharpness of the 35-70 f2.8. It outdoes both versions of the 35-70 f3.5 manual focus. I don’t think that the 28-50 is a notable lens except that it is nice and small. I never could understand anyone’s fixation with the 105 f2.5. I sold two of them. But I did find the f1.8 to be quite good, despite most everyone’s opinion. My zooms tear the f2.5 lens in half, but not the f1.8.
              The 70-210 that I like is the AF one. The series E is sharp but not quite as sharp and the coatings aren’t nearly as good. The AF lens has a wonderfully saturated color rendition. It is, however, possibly the cheapest feeling all metal lens I can think of at the moment…
              I like the 180 f2.8edif and the 135 f2, and the rubber ringed 85f1.8. I like almost all the wide primes, but especially the 20 f3.5.
              One lens that I like that nobody cares about is the old 200 f4p and pc. I’ve got a few for around forty or fifty bucks and they rock. I would probably pair them with an early version of the 85 or 105 for color and the 28 f2. I think it may be sharper than all the zooms we have discussed and most of the ones that we haven’t. Someday I’ll have to shoot it against my 200 f2 and against the macro…

      • Bay

        Ridiculous statement. Whether it will be softer or sharper is to be determined, but there’s no indication that it will be “significantly” softer intentionally. In addition to the f/1.8 vs f/1.4 examples, even the $300 55-200 VR isn’t significantly softer than my 70-200 f/2.8 (check Photozone charts, f/5.6 @ 200mm agrees with my experience). I take my 55-200 when hiking and just use the 16MP DX mode on my D800, but this could be a good FX alternative (though certainly heavier).

  • I cannot believe this thing is finally becoming true. Let’s see what the price is…

    • karl

      …also, let’s see if it comes with a golden ring..

      really, it’s gotta have a pro build quality and nano crystal coat, with a price tag of $1500 at most

      • desmo

        it should be golding approx $1500
        see 15-35 and 24-120 f4 as an example

        if so its a long awaitde addition

        hopefully it will be nikon tele converter compatable

        • desmo

          oops meant gold ring

          • Pablo Ricasso

            NO WAY. I want FIVE golden rings.

        • JETELINHO

          ooops n. 2 – there isn´t 15-35 mm lens in the N repertoar … just a note

          • Correcting JETELINHO

            ooops n. 3 – it isn’t “repertoar” but “rep·er·toire” …

            • Bobby Fish Her

              HAHAHAHA! Repertoire is hard to spell, but Repertoar is just killing the hell out of me.

              No grammar police, though. I’ve been guilty PLENTY of times!!!!!

  • Michael

    DAMNIT. I just bought a 135 f/2 dc since the 70-200 2.8 was out of my price range. If this is under $1800 I’m buying it in a heartbeat.

    • You bought a superior lens that will outlast all this other garbage. Don’t fret. Just make sure you calibrate the focus wide open. And enjoy. There are things you can do with that, that you can’t with the 70-200 at 2.8. And definitely things you coudln’t do at f4.

      • Much Agreed

        Yep much agreed with Micah.

        Michael if you could afford the f2/135 dont even consider damnin your self. Actually many would wish to swop yo lense with the 70-200/2.8 let alone the 4.0. This new lense will probably prioritise budget at the expense of quality in sharpness etc.

        Of course there’s many those who will benefit from this lense so big-up to Nikon for catering for yet another market segment.

      • Michael

        I love it, it’s an amazing lens to shoot with. I originally wanted a tele zoom, but now that I’ve had some experience with the 135 dc I’m falling in love with this focal length. Not to mention the lens is a tank. Still, this 70-200 is worth considering in my opinion.

  • RenoRaines

    For those of us who aren’t working pros and can’t justify shelling out $2400 for the 70-200 f/2.8 but can afford something a step above the 70-300 f/4.5-5.6G VR, this f/4 will fill the bill quite nicely, thank you. My guess is that it will come in at a price that is close to the comparable Canon, around $1350, give or take $100. Give up one stop and perhaps a bit in build in exchange for a grand in my pocket? Count me in. Add it to a 16-35 f/4 and a 50 1.4, and you’re good to go for a very long time.

    • Richard



      I have both of the lenses you mention and, above 200mm, the 70-300mm starts to get soft. Still its not a bad lens and is a heck of a lot lighter than my 70-200 f2.8. A constant aperture will be welcome as well for a lot of reasons. Nikon needs to price this lens competitively with Canon’s offerings if they hope to keep any number of people around who are looking to upgrade their “kit” and start comparing the selection of available lenses and prices. At some point there will be a number of people who decide it is less expensive to go ahead and change over before getting further into Nikon because it is slow getting competitive lenses out and they cost more anyway.

  • danpe

    16-35, 24-120, 70-200 f/4 all vr
    14-24, 24-70, 70-200vr f/2.8
    Has Nikon finally listened?
    80-400 af-s and, 300/4 vr around the corner together with d400?;)

    • desmo


    • Chubby Brunette

      300 f4 VR +1000!

    • Cashed up

      Yes, the versatile 80-400 af-s VRIII and super sharp 300mm f4 VRIII are hopefully around the corner together with the D400.
      I’ve been saving for the last 3 years for one of these lenses.
      Hey, all cashed up, NIKON!!

  • I swill dreaming new 24-70 VR (it could be F2.8 or F4 doesn’t matter)

    • Rudi

      Why do you need VR with this lens?

      • axel

        hand held landscape, no need for a tripod in a lot of situations

      • Hendheld, low light situation. specially at wedding. When people are posing to you and you want to get background aswell. So if I have 3 stop VR, that means I could reduce ISO 3 stop to get similar resılts (unmoving objects). If I take 4 or more people I can not use wide F valıe. Every body must be sharp. So even in low light I use about F6.3-F8 1/80 ish… and iso about 2000 ! If I have VR I could take 1/30 with iso 800.
        Whats wrong If we have VR? even 18-55 has VR 🙂

        • Apollo

          Remember, VR doesn’t stop movement!

      • RC

        I’ve found that I need 1/160 for sharp handheld photos from my 85mm on a D600. VR would allow me to use a MUCH slower shutter speed.

        • Michel

          That or some betablockers…

        • Richard


          The D7000 users discovered right away that a much faster shutter speed than they were used to was required to get sharp images. First off, everybody forgets the crop factor so instead of the FX “rule of the reciprocals” 1/85th Sec, about 1/125th Sec was required (for the 85mm lens). To be really sharp, about 1.5 times “the rule” seems to work well with the D7000. You don’t have the crop factor on your D600, but the lighter weight of the body and the ergonomics of the shutter release accentuated any movement caused by the actuation of the shutter release and the finer/smaller pixels showed any movement much more so than the 12 MP sensors everyone was used to using. This was the experience of the D800 crowd (it has about the same pixel pitch or density as the D7000) though the placement of the shutter release is a bit better on it than the D7000. With the D7000, the additional weight of the battery pack helped to reduce this effect.

          And then there is the matter of the subject’s seemingly imperceptible movement which can show up when you look at the image on a larger screen.

          All things considered, the VR is still a very useful tool.

    • Gab

      The 24-120 F4vr is a fantastic lens…

      • Gab 2.0

        “The 24-120 … is a fantastic lens… ” Not according to slrgear or photozone reviews. It’s fantastic for $700, but not for $1300 !!
        It has no direct competition so they charge too much for it.

  • Mike

    I think this lens got delayed due to earthquakes, Nuclear meltdowns, flooding, and perhaps a sprinkling of showstoppers that one generally has when a new product is being R&D’d

    • kjiu

      Or it is intended to be used by D600 users?

  • And 100-400 next?

    And the 300mm f/4 VRII should be next in line. Or the 100-400mm f/5.6 VRII .

    And then a 20mm G series prime.

    • That 20mm f1.8G is long overdue, and would suit both the FX and the DX crowd (to have a cheap prime trinity 20-35-50). Th 28mm f1.8G completely missed the mark, as it’s useless on DX. Given that, I’d even be pleased with a DX only wide prime, as long as the price is really low

      • JED

        A lens designed for FX is a fail because of its DX performance?!?!?

        • desmo

          your wrong,

          the making of separate dx lenses in this and other non wide angle focal lengths would only increase cost to both nikon communities with no real gain.

          • D4ve

            you’re wrong…

            • desmo

              ever here of economy of scale

  • Karen

    Is 67mm filter size?

  • D400


    • Dixie

      A typical message for a person who is waiting (and waiting) for D400.

  • Zen

    How is this lens better than 70-300 VR 4.5-5.6 ?
    It’s only 1/3 to 2/3 stop brighter (4.5@70, 5.3@200) so it’s not a big improvement here.
    On DX, 70-300 image quality is quite good in the 70-200 range, but it’s less good on FX.
    Better lens ergonomics could be interesting, 70-300 has a rather small focus ring.

    So I think that a 70-200 f/4 could help people with D600/D800, with better image quality on FX borders, slightly lower constant aperture, better ergonomics, better VR.
    Now let’s see the price too, I guess that it should be between 1/3 and 1/2 the price of the f/2.8 (800-1200$, but more likely 1000$-1300$).

    • MRGABE

      Doesn’t ramp, and zoom will probably be internal.

  • NIkonnn

    made in china or japan ?

    • Kayle

      Seem like it’s made in Thailand.

      • RussB


        • Me

          If you made it in the U.S it would be $45,000, weigh 400lbs and be a POS like the few products actually made in that country.

          • Scurvy hesh

            @me Exaggerate much?

        • Waren

          BS? I don’t think so. Many lens, even Nano, are being made and assembled in Nikon’s facility in Thailand. Its overall cost will be too high if it’s made in Japan.

  • Toonie

    let’s just hope they price it right, it’s gonna sell like hot cake 😀

    • Delayedflight

      Even if it is all the whiners will still secretly buy it and complain about it. Same thing with the D600 damn thing sold like hot cakes.



  • Hao

    Just when I bought the 70-210 F4…

    • Kim

      Me too!!!
      But there’s no guaranty the new one will be sharper…
      My old 70-210 f/4 is as sharp as the 70-200 AFS from 70-135, and ALMOST as sharp at 200mm.
      I love the fact that zoom is internal, and the great handling and weight compared to the 70-200/2.8

      • Hmm maybe we’re talking about a different lens, because mine is not really impressively sharp and what bugs me the most, it produces really low contrast pictures which always require you to push the contrast slider. Not to speak about Af speed and the annoying aperture ring which changes quite easily by accident. Though the build quality is excellent and +1 on the handling.

        Nevertheless I bought this lens for 70€ and it served its purpose, but now I m really happy to be having 2 options to upgrade to.

      • Pablo Ricasso

        I advocated that lens, and it is a great one for a couple hundred bucks. The new one is going to cost a thousand.
        But the old lens focus is slooooooooooow and the new one should be sharper and more contrasty in an ED sort of way. And the old lens won’t operate on your D3200 or your D5100.
        But yeah, you might like the colors of the old one a little better on your D70 on a good day…

    • EastOfGratiot

      I’ve had two of the old 70-210 f/4 Nikon AF lenses and loved them both for my D700. Then I tried them on my pixel-dense D7000 and realized they were relics – not sharp at all compared to the newer 70-300 VR or 28-300 VR lenses. I just bought a new 200mm f/4 micro Nikkor for my telephoto lens. It’s plenty sharp on my D600 but there are times when I like a zoom and VR. The 70-200 range is about perfect for everything. This new lens could be ideal.

  • TheInconvenientRuth

    Hah, just e-mailed you about seeing one in the wild last weekend. Looks pretty neat, but the hood looked way too big, hope that was just a ‘disguise’. It’s as big as the HB17 on the AFS 80-200/2.8D ED. (relative to the lens size, of course).

    Just had a look at a D7000 and I’m pretty sure the body it was on was NOT a D7000. It had an articulated screen (the guy took some overhead shots of MUSE), AND a top LCD. Which one is that?

    • Cashed up

      Did you take a pic of it?

  • esbullbear

    I am afraid Nikon will price this lens at $1700 range 🙁

  • Spinnicle

    My guess is that it would be 40% cheaper than 70-200VR II

  • Joel

    Hearing of a new VR system has me just a little excited that we may see a revised 70-200 in a couple of years time. Whilst I love my VR2 at f4 and above on the D800, it’s just not quite as sharp as the Canon wide open.

    • Joel

      A revised 70-200 2.8 that is

    • Remedy

      Yeah, Canon’s latest 70-200 f2.8 is simply stunning. I truly envy canonistas that lens.

      • RussB

        If you shoot with the 70-200 VRII, believe me, you are missing nothing…

  • Remedy

    It’s absolutely hilarious if not hysterical reading most of the comments.
    One would think people here have at least basic knowledge about all that gear.

    Once again, this lens won’t be cheap nor light nor small. WTF is wrong with all of You? Has any of You ever seen the old 70-210 f4 manual Nikkor lenses? Were they small? Doubt it. Now add to this modern AF-S motor add to this VR also take into consideration that it won’t be all metal like the old manuals so it means thicker plastic shell/chassis.
    This lens is gonna be practically identical in size compared to the 2.8 version the only difference being the size of the front element hence in consequence a little smaller in diameter (the whole lens). And of course it’s gonna be pricey because it’s a fking modern zoom lens with VR and what not.

    Keep dreaming about D600 being 1500$ and this new lens being 1000$ and pocket size. Good luck with that.

    • Remedy?

      Relax, your going to get a stroke…

      Seems YOU don’t have basic lens/camera knowledge…

      • I was searching for this old lens and could not find it – thanks for the link.

      • Nikonuser

        There was also an AF version 70-210/4 in the past…see Rockwell’s site for a review.

        Nikon’s current lens lineup is a mere shadow or what it once was…in the mid 1990s.

    • JMP

      Why all the anger?

      Of course it will be lighter than the 2.8. It will be a lot lighter. Go and compare a Canon 70-200 f/2.8 IS with a Canon 70-200 f/4 IS. There is a huge difference in size and weight.

      Calm down and go and learn a bit about the subject.

    • What’s wrong with you Remedy? Why the anger? Calm down – nobody has unrealistic expectations. Most people expect this lens to sell between $1300-1800, not $1000 😉
      The Canon F4 version is almost exactly half the weight of the F2.8 version, and it is shorter and thinner, and it comes in about 40% cheaper. Yet you’re are calling people idiots left and right for making similar assumptions about this upcoming lens. Hope you’re a bit more mature in real life.

    • Kerry33

      Calm down…

      By the way, i have tested that old 70-210 f4. Its wayyyyy lighter than 70-200 VR II. So thats just confirmed that you never actually handle and know how to differentiate tele lenses at f4 or 2.8.

      Before migrated to nikon, i was using canon 30D with 70-200 f4 and borrowed 2.8 IS version. No need to explain. people that have experience using these lenses knows that the difference is huge in terms of weight. Let alone price

  • If this rumor hold true, will this lens be on my wish-list. Yes, the f2.8 is good for it’s uses, but to lug around with it takes it’s toll on the back. So let’s hope for something good for christmas.

  • Chris P

    After the 70-200 f4 is introduced the next announcement will be that production of the 80-200 f2.8D has ceased, you win some, you lose some.

    • Nikonuser

      Yup, they will likely stop making the 80-200, even though it’s one of their most popular lenses (a boneheaded but predictable move if they indeed do it, btw) and lots of people are going to upset when they can’t get an 80-200/2.8 for $1100 anymore. Folks, you heard it on nikonrumors first. And the 70-200/4 VR will likely be just as expensive, if not slightly more.

  • Let’s hope it will not breathe so mutch this f/4 version of 70-200. 😀

  • Now we need an equivalent range on DX, maybe a 50-135/150 f2.8 VR.

  • Dr Motmot

    This is great news. I was just about to go for the 2.8 version but think I will hold off a little longer to see what the reviews say. This is ideal to go with the D600 (second on my wishlist – third being a 300mm f4 VR).

  • If wishing, still want an updated 80-400 with AF-S and newer VR (have worn mine out).

    Also, how about some long primes (400 f/4 or f/5.6 and 500 f/5.6)? With higher ISOs that look good in the newer cameras, would give those of us with smaller wallets the chance to own and shoot. Am aware can add TCs to other lenses, however TCs still affect the final pictures (and the funtionality in some lenses).

    • Sue

      + 1ooo… to everything you just said.

  • Divergent opinions above to say the least. It will probably weigh about half of what the f/2.8 model does. If it sells for about $1,300 it will be hot.

  • Zinzun

    Half the size, half the weight, will it also be half the IQ? Main reason I bought my 70-200 VR II is its magnificent IQ and bokeh…

    • Jorge

      Here! Here!
      The 70-200 2.8 VR Rocks! IQ, sharpness, and bokeh! I love my copy. Love it. I don’t need no stinkin F4 lens…
      Go fast…

    • JMP

      No reason why it should be “half the IQ”.

      Yes the f/2.8 lens is a beautiful lens, but it’s not for everyone (I sold mine because of the weight and replaced it with primes). The Canon f/4 is an excellent lens and is certainly not the second rate, low quality lens that some of the macho snobs on here seem to assume it is.

  • Merv

    Must be at least $1200 assuming the same build quality as the f/2.8 version

    Any idea what the minimum shooting distance is?

    • ZoetMB

      You have to take into account the US dollar decline against the Yen. That’s why all the latest Nikon products are coming in higher than the products they replace. The dollar has declined 30% against the Yen since 2007.

      Canon prices their f4 with IS at 54% the price of the 2.8 with IS. If Nikon prices at the same factor, the f4 would be $1296 in the U.S. Except that Nikon uses new product introductions to increase prices. so I’m going to guess that this lens comes in somewher between $1300 and the $1800 that other’s have suggested

    • Pablo Ricasso

      If it’s like the old f4 lens, it will focus MUCH closer and will negate many peoples need for carrying a macro lens.

  • D800_is_finally_here

    Given most of the Nikon f/4 lenses cost about 2/3 of their f/2.8 sibling, this seem to suggest this lens would cost US$1500-$1600 at release, no less.

    • DM

      $1500 would be perfect if it comes with 300 f/4 image quality

  • Josh

    Great news but dont think I will get it. Nikon please we need something that gets us out to 300mm at F/4 with VR whether its a prime or something like a 100-300 f4 zoom. Then i will no longer envy the canon 70-300 L, 100-400 L and 400mm f5.6.

  • RC

    I’ll never understand the desire for this lens. I bought the 70-200 to shoot at F2.8. If I wanted a lighter lens, I’d get the 70-300. But maybe if they have more options, they could make more money. It’s easier to upsell when the gap isn’t so huge.

    • constant F/4 is a plus, new VR tech will help as well

  • Wow. This would be great, especially for my assistants as the 70-300 VR are not really good on wedding shoot.

    If Nikon is planning to release a new 24-70mm, I hope it retains the awesome hood. Unlike the new Canon 24-70mm L2, yes very sharp images but bad hood and price.

  • Nikonuser

    Lens better have a tripod collar, unlike the Tokina and like the Canon lenses.

  • Jan K.

    Darned! They are breaking my line-up.
    12-24 f/4, 24-120 f/4… it should have been a 120-300 f/4

    Hehe, looking forward to it anyway. But it *must * be with a golden ring… or else…

    • D90

      Then why not get rid of the big 24-120mm and get a 35mm f/1.8? It’ll fit nicely between 24 and 70mm.

  • CJ

    buying up the 80-200 mm while you still can !!!!

  • Robert k

    Ah, pure nostalgia.
    I remember the 70-210/4 lens. Almost impossible to focus on a Nikon F , huge focus shift when zooming, but I loved it anyway

  • OJK

    I do understand that many users urge for such a lens. However, I already own the “holy trinity”, so my wish was that Nikon would hit two nails at once while desiging 70-200 f/4: a lens for those seeking for lighter and cheaper lens and a replacement for micro- Nikkor 70-180 in the same package. However, it might be that such a lens would not be cheap enough. Well, my next wish on my wish list is that Nikon would produce a replacement for the 200 f/4 micro-Nikkor with VR.

  • Todd

    I’m sorry but isn’t this the third generation of this lens? Yet the original 80-400mm is the only one available! Yes they’re typically used for different applications but regardless, seems odd.

  • Pete

    what is wrong with the market research of Nikon? Another lens nobody is waiting for. Where is that affordable 400 f/5.6 or upgraded 80-400 ??

    • nobody

      I’ve been waiting for this lens. Honey, you’re not the center of the universe.

    • desmo

      better yet ….
      400 f4

  • Joe

    We’re growing an impressive crop of morons this year.

  • AlphaOne

    But too late. 🙁
    I just bought the 2.8 VRII 4 months ago.

  • No 80-400VRIII AF-S?

    See the old 70-210 f4. Not small.

    The new one would be ‘G’ lens and AFS so likely shorter and yes waaay more plastic. Sharpness will be great for sure to suit newest high MegaPixel bodies. I guestimate $1000-$1200 price range.

    Yes Nikon, still dreaming ……80-400 VRIII AF-S

  • Good! I’ve been holding off on the 2.8 because of the price. I’d be perfectly happy with a F/4 for around $1400.

  • Dixie

    Poor people keep on daydreaming! 😀 😀

    Reality will hit hard, though!

  • tnt


  • Yay! Finally! This lens is about 10 years late.

  • KnightPhoto

    WHAT NEW GENERATION OF VR???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? 😉

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