Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G Special Edition vs. regular 50mm f/1.8G lens specifications comparison

AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f:1.8G Special EditionAF-S NIKKOR 50mm f:1.8G
This is the specifications comparison between the new Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G Special Edition lens and the regular 50mm f/1.8G version - both lenses seems to be identical except the 5g difference in weight (probably because of the silver ring):

Lens AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Special Edition AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G
Focal Length 50mm 50mm
Maximum Aperture f/1.8 f/1.8
Minimum Aperture f/16 f/16
Format FX/35mm FX/35mm
Maximum Angle of View (DX-format) 31°30' 31°30'
Minimum Angle of View (DX-format) -- --
Maximum Angle of View (FX-format) 47° 47°
Minimum Angle of View (FX-format) -- --
Maximum Reproduction Ratio 0.15x 0.15x
Lens Elements 7 7
Lens Groups 6 6
Compatible Format(s) FX
VR (Vibration Reduction) Image Stabilization -- --
Diaphragm Blades 7 7
Nano Crystal Coat -- --
ED Glass Elements -- --
Aspherical Elements 1 1
Super Integrated Coating Yes Yes
AF-S (Silent Wave Motor) Yes Yes
Internal Focusing -- --
Minimum Focus Distance 1.5ft. (0.45m) 1.48ft. (0.45m)
Close Range Correction -- --
Focus Mode Auto
Rear Focusing -- --
Filter Size 58mm 58mm
Accepts Filter Type Screw-on Screw-on
Approx. Dimensions (Diameter x Length) 2.8in.(73mm)x2in.(52.5mm)
Approx. Weight 6.7oz. (190g)
6.6oz. (185g)
 Price $276.95 $216.95

MTF charts (identical):

Nikon Special Edition AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f:1.8G lens MTF chartAF-S-NIKKOR-50mm-f1.8G-lens-chart

Lens design (identical):

Nikon Special Edition AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f:1.8G lens design1.4-lens-construction-diagram

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  • nikonzall

    Wow $60 more for a silver painted plastic ring?

    • AllForTeags

      Nikon: Uh oh. They’re onto us…

      • istreetshooter

        After being a Nikon user since the 80s, I’m getting the Uh, Oh feeling.

    • 24K gold ?

      Seems to be 5g metal ring at 12 M$ per tons, a very rare metal I suppose

      • I don’t wanna beat on you, but that is an Idiotic, primary school comment. IC chips cost more than sand but they’re the same compound.
        – sheesh. If you’re gonna make snide comments, at least engage grey matter.

        • Stanley77

          I am with nikonxal on this one and the new 58mm.

          • Fair enough, but what’s your reasoning for assuming that goods should be priced commensurate with the cost of their component matierials, while ignoring economies of scale and initial low volume production costs.

            • dark3n

              I think you just didn’t get his sarcasm. That’s alright, don’t worry.

            • How does one distinguish between his sarcasm and another twenty almost identical smart aleck comments? Most people when being funny also try to be original. But that’s alright, don’t worry.

            • Stanley77

              It is the ‘old profit motive’ which morphs with my lens envy and Nikon’s greed.

            • Ah, both the dreaded NAS and OPM (other people’s money) combined into one 😉 . Collectors items, by definition, have always targeted those with a disposable income and a strong affection for the company. If one looks at this lens as merely an accoutrement to the $WTF Df, then I doubt very much that said prospective purchaser would bat an eyelid at a “mere” $60 difference for retro styling. If he would, then he’d just buy the body in any case.

              Still, there’s this old Chinese proverb I’ve just invented, which translates something along the lines of, “A company without a profit motive is like a whore without a chuff: pointless.”

            • Stanley77

              Yes indeed. Same as it ever was…lol

    • SynNergy

      It costs money to be hip.

      • Calibrator

        It’s hip to be square!

      • Al

        Lol it’s a ~25-30% mark up to be hip.

        • Spot on… either cash or a 25%~30% increase in imagination is needed… Most I’d wager have a surfeit of the former and dearth of the latter.

      • Of course it does… If anyone could afford it, it would cease to be hip. Even on this forum there are people who like to “inform” us about their D800. I suffer from such shallowness, too since I used to fish for jealous comments regarding a $5000 DVD A1X which I was given by Denon, mainly because I knew that it was a coveted item in certain circles at the time.

    • FDF

      Still much cheaper than adding a wooden grip for a couple of thousand $.

    • Cool it people. It’s just a cosmetic change. Why are you guys so angry about people spending THEIR money? That’s money that goes back to Nikon to make shit we use. That’s money that generates tax revenue and anyway, a bit of variety never hurt anyone… It’s a free economy. If it sells, it sells, if not, find them deeply discounted a year down the line.

      • User

        There’s no point comparing this and that
        Non of the features is new
        The camera and the lens are Lego from existing parts

      • brownskie

        Maybe.. But think of it this way too. The more people spend money on shit.. The more Nikon might see “hey look at all the money we are making on shit!! Let’s keep it up!”

        • again, I believe the market will speak. How many people do you really think will buy a hipster lens? Some… Yes. A vast, company changing success? Maybe not. Nikon will still dish out their bread and butter 3200’s and they’ll still dish out their single digit D’s to the pros (think supercars adding to brand value). I don’t think there is anything to fear… They might even create a new market. If this works, they might create a more “affordable” no frills camera.

          • brownskie

            PLEASE!!!! Do not ever underestimate the power of the hipster. Here’s some good reading for you.


            • mikeswitz

              You wouldn’t know a hipster if she bit you on the ass. They don’t frequent bars that make ridiculous
              overpriced drinks, they make them at at home. They go to dives to hang out, shoot with Holga cameras and save all their money for tattoos.
              Those places are probably for well to do tourists who have large disposable incomes.

            • brownskie

              calm down hipster.

            • mikeswitz

              all hipsters are very calm

            • brownskie

              from your last response I’d say no they are not.

            • mikeswitz

              Like I said(calmly) you wouldn’t know a hipster if she bit you on th ass.

            • brownskie

              Because you know me well enough over the net? right…. go on troll

            • Dpablo unfiltered

              It’s really not hip to bite people in the ass. Or the hips…

            • Interesting link, though not sure what bobos in a once-seedy subdistrict of Paris have to do with supporting Nikon in the war ahead.

      • Steven Wade

        I like your free market mind.

    • broxibear

      Apparently it’s made from aluminium.

    • Presumably this means that a D610 with the D4 sensor and video disabled would cost $2200.

      • asiafish

        More than that ($2800 body only), and since it does have that D4 sensor it is worth every penny.

    • f/2.8

      The optics are the same. The focusing throw is longer, and dampened to allow better precision, feel and operation when focusing manually.
      If you have never used manual focus lenses, there is no point for you to understand. If you had, I am sorry you couldn’t comprehend the differences.
      Eagerly awaiting to see the auto-focus performance of this lens.

      • nikonzall

        Chill out f2.8, This is just a $200 50mmf1.8 Consumer lens. Where did you get the info? I did not see it in the table. Did you use this lens and actually hold it and are sure it is dampened? Or you are just wishing it to be.
        My first lens was a manual focus 50mm f1.4 bought in 1975. I can assure you I can comprehend the deference I just don’t give a crap about it because back in 80’s they invented AF And it fu$&& works. I guess the f2.8 user name says it all.

        • shanganagh

          Deference? You should show some to f/2.8. At least he can spell.

          • nikonzall

            I corrected the typo, Thanks for going around Disqus and pointing out typos. It seems that is all you do.
            As for showing f/2.8 some difference, how about reading his/her stupid comment that if one is not happy with being ripped off (as I am, since I have preorder this thing) I must be stupid and don’t understand the finer points of some imaginary function in the new lens which there is no proof that it exist. Indeed I may be stupid for preordering this but I am smart enough to see for myself, I order it and see if I like it if not I will sell it. As oppose to regurgitate carp I here from others on the net without knowing if it is real or not.

            Now how about some opinion from you besides spell checking others.

    • brownskie

      Think of all the hot hipsters I can pick up now at starbucks.

  • This camera and lens are a new experiment for Nikon. They have not yet learned to balance innovation and customer value against the risks of either cannibalization or losing mkt share due to lack of innovation. Not good.

    • drpeters

      Since they’ve been in business since 1917 and have sold a gajillion lenses and bodies, I think they have an idea what they are doing. Nikon has, in my opinion, two main problems: The rise of the camera phone, which has many consumers questioning the need for a dedicated photographic device.

      The second problem is one that is also faced by the manufacturers of computer hardware. Technology has advanced so much, that “old” cameras (or computers) are still pretty darn good and will do everything a person wants. People are clinging to their D700/D300/D3s bodies because they are still delivering. The hardware is still great.

      • Guest

        Do they have the same managers since 1917?

        • drpeters

          I think those managers now work remotely and communicate with the office using a Ouija board.

          • mikeswitz

            Digital Ouija board! (made in China).

  • Kai

    No Dustring on the special Edition?

  • Bas

    Still happy with my 100 bucks 1.8 AF-D!

  • desmo

    if I didn’t know better(lol)
    I’d say they’re the same lens

  • lorenzo

    Two identical lenses, two different prices.
    Same thing with the GP-1 and the GP-1A: the latter almost $100 more expensive when on their site they DECLARE the two are IDENTICAL.
    This isn’t the way to fix the budget but to upset more the customers.

    • Plug

      I disagree, the new lens has more style for which a premium is asked. The choice is, after all, yours.

      • lorenzo

        what a $60 metal ring?

        • Plug

          As I said, the choice is yours.

        • Thylmuc

          As I only have Nikon lenses with that ring, it would be a better fit. But I have no intention for buying a G lens. I would not be surprised if most potential buyers of the Df think the same.

          • An $80 second hand 50 1.4D performs well enough if one insists on the rather redundant D ring. But yes, there are varying degrees of retro.

      • Ronan

        The thing is people want a cool camera that’s nifty, but not pay anything more than the regular version (or even less).

        It seems no one realizes that retro = more expensive. If they absolutely want the ‘old style’ then their’s a lot of great SLR’s for $100 that shoot film.

        Since when are premium goods suppose to be cheaper than regular one’s? lol

      • @Plug. Agreed. It could be as simple as economies of scale, or it could be a slight “MIJ” premium. Either way, on a 3000 dollar camera, 60 bucks premium on a “matching” lens is neither here nor there.

    • Richard

      But why use a Nikon GPS in the first place? There are several cheaper that do more!

    • Maji

      Read what B&H has to say. The MF abilities of the special edition are better.

    • Ronan

      Lots of complaining from you… maybe you should log-off and go take some photos outside to calm down a bit.

      The market share dictates the price, Nikon found out the people this camera/lens is aim at, has the extra disposable income. So guess what? The price is higher.

      This is NOT a entry-level camera. You can fool yourself as much as you want, it is NOT entry-level with a $999 price tag. Get real.

      As for the lens, it’s $60 more expensive because:
      It’s a premium lens.
      it’s manufactured at a MUCH lower rate than the regular one.

      Honestly, i was expecting $100 if not $150 higher price tag, not $60.

    • Poor you. They forced you to buy it under the guise of the lens being higher a performing product?

  • It would be interesting to see a comparison with the 50mm f1.2 AI-s

  • drpeters

    It appears the Special Edition 50mm f/1.8 is made in Japan instead of China, which to some is a big difference.

    • lorenzo

      Do you know where they make the new 58 f/1.4?
      Don’t know if it is a clue but the larger white dot for the lens alignment suggests me they are made in China 🙂
      And In that case they can keep them!

      • drpeters

        The larger white dot is an ergonomic redesign and not a sign it was made in China. The 58mm f/1.4 is made in Japan.

        • lorenzo

          Thanks for the answer above – assuming that site is reliable. I don’t see the 58mm on their list.

        • lorenzo

          A picture of the lens back would be better but probably nobody has the lens yet.
          I own the old one and possibly later will buy the new 58 if B&H can swear that it comes from Japan and has 5 years warranty.
          Thanks again.

          • drpeters

            I read here on NR that the 58mm is made in Japan. Seems like it would be, as the other primes in the Nikon expensive prime family are also made in Japan.

            • lorenzo

              Agree; all my primes are fron Japan. Perhaps the new 24-120mm f/4 is not considered a prime lens even if it has a gold ring; it is made in Thai.

            • dwd

              Perhaps you don’t know what a prime lens is.

            • Ronan

              I don’t think he knows much…

              His posts for the past few days have shown:
              Poor knowledge of marketing.
              Poor knowledge of quality control (it’s made in china, it sucks keep it!!! whaaaa!!!!)
              Poor knowledge of different types of lenses (doesn’t know what a prime is)
              Poor knowledge of Nikon’s history

              The list goes on…

            • mikeswitz

              May in fact be….robert!

            • Ronan
            • I have the Nikon 58mm f/14G in my hands I can confirm that is made in Japan.

          • zoetmb

            All Nikon lenses sold in the U.S. and not grey market have a five year warranty regardless of where they were manufactured. And the box will tell you where it was manufactured. That’s the law.

          • Roland

            I have the 58 1.4g and it’s made in Japan

            • n1k0n

              ouch the one with the slower focusing?

          • Yes, It said 5 year warrantee on the placard.

        • jk

          well, my 50mm f1.4G is also made in China.
          but my copy of 50mm f1.4G is pretty sharp across the full frame, maybe even sharper than my 85mmf1.4G.

      • I played with one last weekend at Nikon Ginza. Made in Japan is clearly labelled.

    • broxibear

      I haven’t seen or read anything that says it’s made in Japan, where did you get that information from drpeters ?

      • lorenzo

        that’s what I thought

      • drpeters
        • broxibear

          Thanks, I asked Nasim too, I’m not saying anyone’s wrong or right, I just can’t find the information. I can’t see it on any of Nikon’s sites, retailer sites or reviews…I thought Nikon would make a big point of it being made in Japan, if for no reason than to differentiate it from the other 50mm ?

          • drpeters

            That site is the ONLY one I’ve found. For me, it is an academic question, as I have an old 50mm f/1.8 made in Japan, and a new 50mm f/1.4G made in China. I’d love to pick up the new, Japanese made 58mm f/1.4!

            • lorenzo

              How could you get the old 50mm f/1.8 from Japan? Mine is just a piece of cheap plastic made in China.

            • drpeters

              It is from 1993 or something and was given to me by a photographer I used to work for. I’ll dig it out of my backup bag and double check.

              Yup! It is from Japan. This lens has been through the ringer and has little scrapes and dings all over it, but the pictures are still sharp!

              You can still find ’em on eBay.


            • zoetmb

              It’s not plastic because it’s made in China. It could have been plastic and made in Japan. Since Nikon runs their own factories in both places (and in their other locations), what counts is how they’ve designed the product. If the same raw materials and machine tools are used in both locations, the resulting product will be exactly the same.

              Furthermore, I don’t understand what the obsession with metal is. Most of us want lighter equipment. Modern composite plastics are high quality materials. I’m not saying it should be all plastic, but this “plastic=junk” mentality is 1950’s thinking.

            • drpeters

              You have different people manufacturing the lenses for different wages. There is a long tradition of high quality lens manufacturing in Japan. China? Not so much.

            • mikeswitz

              There is a long tradition of Nikon making great lenses. Sony? Not so much. Yet so many on this board claim the reason they are buying the Sony FF is because Nikon released a camera they didn’t like. I’m not sure anyone has definitive proof that Nikon lenses made in China are inferior to those made in Japan.

            • umeshrw

              Agreed with plastic V/S metal part. I did till yesterday when I actually used a friends 85 1.8 g. May be the plastic is good quality. But the moment I held it in hand to put it on cam, I felt insecure about its quality. I have 85 1.8 D and it feels better and solid than the newer one. Mind you I am talking only about plastic quality. The IQ of G type is much better than D.

            • TheInconvenientRuth

              Apparently they were initially made in Japane, later production moved to china. I have a ‘made in Japan’ version too.

            • longzoom

              My non-D model, which I value as the sharpest 50-Nikkor ever, (and I have or had them all) was made in Japan.

    • n1k0n

      You can’t have the cake and eat it. Much like you can’t expect Nikon to come out with less costly stuff without moving manufacturing to areas where labor cost is low. Keep in mind though it’s not where the lens is made that determines the quality, rather the set target price from the manufacturer.

  • Mansgame

    And a sucker is born every minute. If you want to go retro, buy the $120 50mm 1.8D.

    • d610 user

      its a pretty decent lens for the price btw

      • nobody cares


    • Donz

      the D is hardly retro. The Df can take pre-AI lens like the NIKKOR-S 50 and NIKKOR-S 50. Now we’re talking retro…

      • Kyle Farris

        What about the NIKKOR-S 50, though? I’m really curious about that one…

    • Lamar Lamb
      • groucher

        Lovely – I’m using Nikkor H and old Ais on my D800 – a bit more flare than modern lenses but every bit as sharp.

      • Mansgame

        I don’t know how to use those spiky things near the aperture ring and still prefer AF in my retro shooting.

      • Ronan

        Fun lenses!

      • Spy Black

        I was checking out your site (nice work) and noticed your comment about ghosting from the scanner. I have a similar issue with my Minolta Dimage 5400 scanner. I’m surprised the Nikon scanner has it as well.

    • I have the 1.4D. I think it looks decidedly 80s rather than decently retro. Looks yummy on an F4.

    • Ronan

      I don’t think you understand the term retro…

      • Mansgame

        80’s is retro to me. New Order, The Cure, Depeche Mode, etc. Everything else is just old.

        • Ronan

          Ah to be young…

        • Shadowaero

          Add Pet Shop Boys, The Smiths, Morrissey, Book of Love and Erasure. for a while it was considered progressive, then alternative, then new wave, now retro.

    • brownskie

      If you want to go really retro.. make a obscura camera

    • Jerome M.

      So true. For those who want to go retro, get a real lens (105 AFD, 24mm AI-S etc…)

      • Vin

        They should have thrown in a retro wide, 24, 28, 35. Something f2, f1.8. And a 85mm f1.8, for the 3K $.seems like the lens was rushed if the Df was not. But after watch some more reviews I will be getting one. It reminds me of my FM, FM2, and F4, by far my most well traveled cameras.

  • Oskar Uhrbom

    what about?

    Minimum Focus Distance1.5ft. (0.45m)1.48ft. (0.45m)

    same in meters but different in Feet :S

    • Ole

      It’s time for the Americans to let go of the foot, miles and pounds systems!

      • zoetmb

        This was tried in the 70s, but idiot conservative politicians thought it was some kind of socialist plot and forced educators to drop teaching it. Frankly, we’re too freaking dumb to adapt (except I guess, in cameras). In fact, even in our own system, I’d bet that a majority of Americans can’t tell you how many feet (or even how many blocks) there are in a mile or how many ounces there are in a quart or pound. I bet if you asked Americans whether an ounce is a measure of volume or weight, they couldn’t tell you that it could be either.

        On the other hand, lots of bottled sodas are now sold in 1 or 2 liter sizes, although inexplicably, cans and smaller bottles are still primarily sold in 12 or 16 ounce sizes. I bet most Americans don’t even notice that the big soda bottles aren’t sold in quarts or gallons anymore.

        Many cars do have a switch where you can change the speedometer and odometer from miles to kilometers, but Americans obviously always keep it set to miles.

        I do prefer Fahrenheit over Celsius though. It has 1.8x the resolution.

        • Guest

          That’s because America was an agricultural society at a time when Europe was becoming scientific. Hard for farmers (you too, I’d wager), to divide physical quantities of things into tenths. Halves and quarters, etc, is easy. In the (20s?) the Russians had a system of math that let even ignorant peasants do fairly complicated arithmetic. Like ‘when a number ends in 5 or 0 it is divisible by 5’, only more complex like (faking it here) ‘ if a number has three digits, ends in 7 or 9 and the middle digit is even the number is divisible by 16’. Crazy stuff. I once had a pamphlet with a bunch of these rules but lost it and have never found another copy. But who cares, your iPhone is thinking for you anyway, right? 🙂

        • ronin

          Yes, idiot conservative politicians forced educators to stop teaching it.


      • Fred

        And it’s time for “metric” countries to use the modern SI metric system. Kilograms is not a uint of weight in the modern metric system. It is a unit of mass. Mass and weight have different units. But everyone uses kilograms-force for weight (and drops the -force bit). And countless people don’t even know there is difference.

        Weight = (mass) x (gravity) which does not equal kilograms for units.

  • I don’t know why everyone is surprised by this.

    Do we not remember the special edition D60 which was basically just a D60 with gold colored shutter button, name plate and strap loops.

    This is not new.

    • nikonzall

      We are not surprised , We are impressed with the size of Nikon’s cojones.

      • lorenzo


    • zoetmb

      That was different. That bling model D60 was produced as an exclusive for a photo chain that went under and since they couldn’t pay Nikon, Nikon got the inventory back.

      What this is closer to are the special anniversary editions, mostly of the old rangefinders, that Nikon has put out in the past, mostly in Japan, except that those anniversary editions were produced in very limited quantities and I think Nikon expected to sell the DF at a rate possibly equivalent to let’s say 75% of the number of D800’s that they sell. (Or maybe somewhat fewer…maybe that’s why it came in at such a high price.)

      For example, in 2005 they released the “Nikon Eye Candy” reproduction of the SP rangefinder. They made 2500 units and sold it for $6000.

      In 2000, they released 2000 units of the “FM2n Year of Dragon Millennium” (2000 units), the S3 Year 2000 Limited Edition (8000 units) and a black version (2000 units).

      In 1993, they did limited editions of the FM2/T.

      In 1984, for the Olympics, they did a 24K gold plated/lizard leather version of the FA.

      I think that covers most of them.

      • jake
      • chris

        Special editions of Nikon cameras back in the day were produced in limited quantities. If there were a fixed limited production run of say 2000 of these lenses, No one would be arguing… they would all be fighting for pre orders which would then in turn double in value…

      • chris

        Special editions of Nikon cameras back in the day were produced in limited quantities. If there were a fixed limited production run of say 2000 of these lenses, No one would be arguing… they would all be fighting for pre orders which would then in turn double in value…

  • broxibear

    This is what B&H are saying about the difference between these lenses…

    “The special edition version was announced in conjunction with the new
    retro-styled Nikon Df camera recently. The camera is autofocus but is
    able to use any traditional manual AI Nikon lens up through the current
    generation of Autofocus lenses from Nikon. The Special Edition version
    features a knurling on the focus ring and focuses more liken to
    traditional manual focus lenses with more precision control of the focus
    ring. The standard version can also be focused manually with great
    control, but when turning the focus ring it offers more play than the
    special edition does.”

    • drpeters

      That could explain the “made in japan” result that I found. Better manual focus: Made in Japan? China has been making Nikon’s cheap lenses, with sub-optimal manual focusing.

      • 007

        Would you like to elaborate on the sub-optimal claim?

        • drpeters

          Do manual focus on an old MF lens and then try it on a modern AF lens with MF capabilities and you will see what I mean.

          Modern MF is all loosy-goosy. Most modern AF lenses have narrow focus rings, with the idea that most people using them will opt for AF.

          • drpeters

            Someone downvoted this? Seriously? Please, who out there thinks the manual focus is better on a modern AF 50mm f/1.8 vs an old manual focus version?

            • The guy who has downvoted your post?

            • drpeters

              That did seem to be indicated. I would just like to hear the reasoning behind the click.

            • Ronan

              Your comment is pretty deceptive, it makes it sound like Nikon made in china lenses are crap.

              Just a FYI, any modern AF lenses used in manual SUCK compared to their original manual counterparts used in manual focusing.

              Where the lens is made has nothing to do with it.

              Nikon QC in China is to Nikon’s high standard.

            • drpeters

              Nikon makes its good lenses in Japan. It is known.

            • mikeswitz

              based on what FACTUAL evidence. I keep asking?

            • Ronan

              It’s Chinese lenses are just as good. They could make their pro lenses there, it would be the exact same thing.

              Look at the 50mm 1.8G.

          • Chris

            i recall users of certain MF medium format lenses, having the grease removed to give the lenses a more loosy-goosy feel. Used with a speedring, following faster moving subjects it was de rigueur at the time. Oh well… I am sure the human body can adapt either way.

      • The dude who does the rather detailed Mir Nikon History site is convinced that Japan made adds very little to the overall quality of a lens.

        • Ronan

          And he is 100% right.

          The Nikon manufacturing plant in China has to answer to Nikon’s strict QC. The only real difference is the labor cost is much lower (the labors still have to be trained to Nikon standard).

          Ideally this means you get the same product as before for less, but realistically Nikon probably just keeps the profit for themselves 😉

        • TheInconvenientRuth

          I’m inclined to agree, but it is also very much about perceived value. If it says ‘made in Japan’, consumers will generally assume it is of better quality and value than if it says ‘made in China’. Even if QC, staff training and production standards are equal. And QC is never 100% on mass produced lenses, but done on a sample basis.
          I believe the main target for the Df/lens is inside Japan, it would certainly matter to those customers.

      • Anónimo

        Did you seen any picture of “this” lens where you can see that it is “made in Japan”?
        So far, everything I’ve seen only apply to the camera body.

    • rhlpetrus

      So this may well explain the price difference. People with a negative attitude just jump on every piece of news to make this launch seem like a disaster and a total rip-off by Nikon.

      • Mansgame

        It is. They could have easily offered more “play” with their other lenses too to make manual focus easier. Especially in the old days when AF-S lenses weren’t out yet and they had cameras like the D40 without an AF motor.

        • umeshrw

          What is actually meant by play? Longer throw or actual play caused by internal gears?

          • Dpablo unfiltered

            I suppose a lot could be lost in the translation. I think of play as looseness and throw as how far I have to rotate the thing to change the focus. But that’s a good point, with the language gap.

      • Ronan

        I just sum it up as ‘internet kiddies’.

        Most of them are drooling at this and butthurt they can’t afford one. So they vent on the internet.

      • broxibear

        Hey rhlpetrus, how are things ?
        I don’t think most critics are jumping “on every piece of news to make this launch seem like a disaster and a total rip-off by Nikon.” There just seems to have been a big split amongst Nikon users as far as the Df is concerned. Part of that is people not liking the Df (no matter what the price), and then you’ve got others who have been waiting for what feels like ever for a D300 and D700 replacement…many feel that should be a priority for Nikon, not a camera like the Df…I understand where they’re coming from. Then when you add the price to the mix it just annoys some people even more.
        The market for this camera is small amongst Nikon users, for non Nikon users it’s smaller still because of all the alternatives those people have. I’m sure it will be a good camera, but i think it will be pushed well to the side when the next big dslrs come out, the D4s, D400 and dare I say it the D700 replacement. I feel it’ll go the same way as the J1 and V1, technically good camera, but they never caught the imagination of enough buyers.
        I know Peter (Admin) said he had more site visits when the D4 and D800 were about to be released, but I don’t remember this much discussion about the actual cameras as I’ve seen across the web regarding the Df…compare it to when the Fuji X100 was first seen, almost everyone loved it, and that was before anyone had seen the images from it.
        Anyway, I promised myself I’d stop talking about the Df, it’s giving me a sore head.

    • Jon Porter

      Thanks! It took B&H to answer the question of the most significant difference between the two lenses. I just hope the special edition’s manual focus really is smooth and precise, not too fast like most AF-S lenses.

      • broxibear

        Hi Jon,
        I’d wait until the hands on tests are out before accepting what B&H have said in answer to a query, again I’m not saying who is wrong or right…I don’t know the answer and I just don’t understand why it’s not been mentioned by Nikon in any of it’s press. Wait and see I guess…which is beter than don’t wait and guess, lol.

  • RMJ

    The new sure looks better than the old one but not sure I’d pay the price for it…

    Altho, isn’t the new one supposed to have better touch for the focus ring ?

    • Ronan

      Correct the manual focus has been improved on the new 50.

  • lorenzo

    Instead of fighting with one another here it would be better, as Admin suggested earlier, to tell Nikon what you think.
    Here is the place for it:

    • John

      I’m betting at least one person there is reading comments on this forum more than that link.

      • lorenzo

        A good reason to write our opinions on both sites 🙂
        BTW I doubt Nikon will ever consider what we say here.

        • zoetmb

          And for the most part, they shouldn’t. Because what is said in a forum has almost no bearing to the way consumers purchase in real life. It’s a highly biased view (frequently filled with trolls telling lies for the fun of it) by a small group of consumers, many of whom have no idea what they’re talking about and who won’t buy what they’d claim they’d buy anyway. (Customer service issues are another matter).

          Furthermore, in terms of totally new types of products, consumers have absolutely no idea what they want. That’s why Apple doesn’t do focus groups. No consumer ever knew in advance that they’d want a Sony Walkman, an Apple iPhone or an Apple iPad, three of the most successful consumer products of all time.

          But having said that, that doesn’t mean that Nikon shouldn’t be testing potential products with working pros and the like.

          • Hear hear. People who post on technical or company/brand related forums (me included) often feel they are the centre of said company’s world. They think they are “majority users” or “typical” who sometimes end up believing the company owes them something.

            • mikeswitz

              Graxxor, I think zoetmb wasn’t talking about you, we all think we are the center of the universe or we wouldn’t be posting here. But you don’t lie snd clearly you have purchased Nikon’s before. I think he was talking about robert/R! who has no friends or cameras and never know what he is talking about. And thinks Nikon is just waiting to hear what he has to say.

            • Mike,, thx for the pointer… Actually, I was agree with him 100%. This strange feeling of entitlement seems to be a common online affliction.

        • kotozafy

          At least Nikon listened to those who complained here about the presence of video on the D800 !

          • And those same people are now probably bemoaning the lack, thereof.

          • umeshrw

            They haven’t made a D800 without video.

  • Ronan

    I like the price! Compared to certain other brands that charge a RIDICULOUS premium for a special color lens or body camera… or hood… $50-$60 isn’t bad at all!

    I own the regular 1.8G so i wouldn’t upgrade, but it’s cool to have the option.

    • lorenzo

      Go order one!

      • Ronan

        I just told you i have the regular version so no need for the new one…

        • jk

          well, prices are about identical , so get the new one , it may have nano coated elements and focuses faster if KR is correct.

          • MK

            it’s exactly the same thing lol. why would someone wants to get 2 of the samething

            • jk

              well, I get it since it may has some unwritten improvement over the AF-S50mm f1.4G and f1.8G.

            • MK

              he needs to review the lenses..

  • Mo

    Can’t wait for the comparison shots !

  • jack

    just saw the new one for € 289,- next to the AF-D for € 139,-…… wow.. please steal my money!

  • Photoretouchpro

    Not sure why they would not release an updated 35mm f/2 with the DF instead. That would have been noice!

    • what_the_fox_says

      because they’re trying to squeeze us as hard as they can 🙂

      • Erik

        The squeezing might backfire though. I am right now reading reviews of the Fujifilm X-E2 rather than pushing the preorder button for the Nikon Df.

        • Went to a fujifilm exhibition in Akihabara a few weeks back. They are really pushing the boat out. I get the feeling they and Pentax are sensing an opportunity.

          • Oops, I meant Olympus…. Why did Olympus name their cameras Pen???

            • MB

              Easy to carry at all times as pen …

            • brownskie

              Back in the late 50s Yoshihisa wanted to make a family friendly camera so it was designed to be as small as possible and the catch tag was born. As portable as a pen… 🙂 now you know.

            • Crystal. Thanks… Which begs the question, what exactly were Pentax aiming for when choosing their company name? As portable as a pen yet as universal as tax? 😉

            • brownskie

              LMAO I wouldn’t be surprised.

        • George Kalogeris

          me too!
          Is it a coincidence ?

          • mikeswitz

            I own Fuji and D800. Not at all for the same jobs. Both great different tools.

            • Vin

              I am right with you, I think the Df may be for me too though, wondering a little what Nikon has up the other sleeve. Fuji just needs to build a Full frame to kill off some of Nikon and Sony thunder,

              Funny Nikon needs mirrorless DX retro,
              Fuji needs fullframe OVF retro,
              Which will be bigger triumph?

        • Vin

          Yes, smaller portability, or low light king. Fuji X-E1 is very nice, so light. I deffently want a Df, unless I hear rumors very soon of similar camera. I may have talked myself into Df, I think it’s built to last a very long time. I hope Nikon ‘s quality control gets this right the first time.

      • MB

        They can squeeze as hard as they can, my marbles are made from real steel baby, note some silver painted plastic as the ring they are selling for 60$ …

        • umeshrw

          Is it really plastic? Where have you read it? or seen it?

        • umeshrw

          Is it really plastic? Where have you read it? or seen it?

      • brownskie

        They can squeeze this to get a rise out of me 😉

    • Anónimo

      My 35 mm AFD it’s fine and can adjust apertures directly on the lens ring, so probably much more in line with “pure photography” than a G model.

  • Shutterbug

    Anyone else who agrees, that the SE looks uglier than the normal one?

  • stormwatch

    Nikon Df was enough for a fail, but charging 60$ more for cheap silver “ring” which imitate someting is the dirtiest move by any company in DSLR industry, dirty as d600 to d610 swap.

    • robert

      well said. bravo!

      and a plastic 50 1.4 for $1800, I think is as well.
      and the same for the SB900>910

      • MK

        all recent gold ring are made of plastic….i’m clueless at why not make the D600. D800 and the D4 plastic, to increase the profit margin

        • robert

          I dont see your logic. ask anyone who would want a plastic camera and im certain it’ll be less than 10%.
          UV light, heat and time make plastic lose it flexibility and makes it brittle and will crack. metal might expand but were talking millimeters at best, if that. plastic will warp from heat.

          Sorry but for a camera costing $2000+, I want metal, and a lot of it.

          and for a 50 1.4 lens costing $1800, that mutha fucka better be all metal! pro caliber and this is a ripoff of a lens if I ever seen one. look at all those old ass pre ai/ai/ais and even before. no way in hell they’d last this long if they were made of plastic.

          • I believe his comment was in jest. Or in other words, he was making a joke, a gag… Being flippant…. Some people are too literal on here…

            • robert

              I dont think so. it doesnt seem that way. nothing sarcastic or humorous about it. seems like serious legit comment.

              If he would have said “if they left out the lcd’s they can increase profit margin” then I would say, yea, ok sure..

            • MK’s remarks here and there tend to be sarcastic or a little acerbic. I just assumed this was the case, too.

            • robert

              I guess you know him well them. sometimes text is hard to tell. same with sms. a lot of misunderstanding because you cant pass along emotions and little nuisances you can hear in the persons voice. cheers.

            • Yeah, I’m not a fan of unlabeled sarcasm. The Japanese invented a rich “lexicon” of emoji for a reason, they hate misunderstandings.

            • MK

              sorry if you don’t understand my sarcasm. here’s another example I’ve created.


  • Spy Black

    Why on earth does an f/1.8 optic have a 58mm filter size? Is it sharing the housing with the f/1.4?

    • TheInconvenientRuth

      Standardization of production. The more lenses they can share common parts with, the better the profit.

    • Ronan

      58 is the new 52.

    • I don’t think nikon make any 52mm filter lenses any more.

  • Performance wise, it’s identical to the vanilla lens but is more expensive.

    Otherwise educated people seem either (a) utterly shocked by a price differential for a similar product or (b) utterly shocked that people would pay more for a similar performance product.

    Nike : Gola made in the same Asian sweatshops since the 90s. Which one costs more?

  • Spy Black

    The new lens is better…

    • In my country, the Dƒ is only available as a kit, so I hope you’re right – although I see nothing to convince me it’s true.
      I already have the current 50/1.8.

      • Spy Black

        It was a joke…

        • Johnny Dough

          Spy Black, always with the jokes ….. 🙂

    • saywhatuwill

      The new lens is better because it has the snazzy silver ring, just like red color makes vehicles faster, whether it’s a bike or a car. The new lens doesn’t focus as close.

  • rhlpetrus

    Just an update: as I mentioned in the “lower demand than D800” thread, Amazon had not included the Df in the DSLR roster then, it is now. It’s ahead of D610, and by arelatively large margin if you add all versions on sale:

    I doubted anyone expe ted it to hit early D800 sales, but it may well become long-term good seller.

    • In japan, where the average single male has more dosh to splosh on the new shiny shiny, the Df is featuring heavily. Looks like it’s going to be popular here.

  • Steven Guest

    I find it kinda funny that Nikon took the time to make the 50mm F/1.8g lens retro and not the 50mm F/1.4g lens. that tells u something right there I love my f/1.8 lens

    • nbleak21

      Yes, higher profit margin.

  • EJPB

    I’d like to believe this Nikon retro story, but everything about it is so terribly fake. The Df is a concept like the new beetle. Underneath is just a Golf, in Nikon’s case it’s a stripped D4 with some D600 parts. I wish Nikon lenses were still made at the standards of the 70’s, different from the plastic era now. The new gen lenses are just not made to last forever, have the ridiculous G-design and are optically very often a bit too average or ‘just good’. It are no Zeiss’s, Fujinon’s, neither Leica’s. Something is away in the Nikon spirit that will never come back in their ‘new beetle’ design, the only specs that increased by the years are the size, weight (for both, I still don’t understand why) and most of all, Nikon’s margin.

    • TheInconvenientRuth

      They surely could build them to last forever and out of metal, like the old Ai-s lenses, but would you be willing to pay double the price for that? Most people wouldn’t – and would complain about the weight as well.So they don’t. You see what happens if they run a limited special version that is a little more expensive. Everyone goes bananas. Imagine if they offered a full metal version with smooth MF at double the price as an option. NR would explode with grief and abuse,..

      • Ronan

        Full metal 70-200 2.8, perfect MF and AF.

        Only $6,995.

        I’ll stick with my ‘plastic’ lenses with a life expectancy of 10 years.

      • saywhatuwill

        Why bother having a nice manual focus if there’s no appropriate focusing screen in the camera?

    • Ronan

      I invite you to go on eBay, search ‘Nikon F3 HP Mint’ and purchase one of those.

      Mine’s still going strong after 20 odd years. Yes it has received a few CLA’s (i think 2 maybe 3) to make sure it’s top notch.

  • Took another look at the lens. It would look fine on any old pre F4 camera, but with no D ring it wouldn’t work, obviously. Moreover, I think the ridiculous plastic “rangefinder” window on the side is a detracting eyesore on a retro “style” lens.

  • NickW

    Admin, do u know if the special edition is made in Japan or China? Thx

  • whisky

    this new lens will be made in smaller numbers. mostly for collectors, so of course nikon will charge a premium. nikon used to charge a similar premium for their black “professional” SLR’s. if i recall correctly, the 45mm f2.8 “black” kit lens for the FM3a also sold for a premium over the chrome looking version.

    nikon previously announced they’d be manufacturing product with a higher profit margin, and while not as ridiculous as the leica premium, i don’t see the harm in a small premium for a match-matchy lens to go with this collector’s camera. JMO.

  • mikeswitz

    Is there definitive evidence that Nikon lenses made in China are inferior to ones made in Japan? Not arguing one side or the other, would just like to know.

    • TheInconvenientRuth

      No there isn’t. But I’ve been living in China for 3 years now. I’d prefer a made in Japan one, simply because I know people happily and openly bribe their way around quality control here and no one cares about what they produce.
      Whereas I’ve visited the Sendai plant 2 years ago and what struck me was the amount of pride the workers there take in what they do, wether it is packing the boxes or assembling a D4.

      • mikeswitz

        Would be interesting to know what Nikon have to say considering they use “Made in Japan” as a marketing tool. ps. How did you get your hands on a Df, however briefly, in China?

        • TheInconvenientRuth

          I didn’t, I’m currently in Singapore for 2 weeks, I got my hands on it there 🙂

      • Ronan

        True, but Nikon QC is big in China. Go visit the plant in China (the one i visited per chance was like 1.5 hours from Shanghai. I was there for business with Sony and was invited to tour the Nikon plant after the Sony one). It’s where the plants for Sony, Panasonic, Hitachi, and a bunch of other’s are located.

        It’s a very high-tech, high quality area where the big boys have their goods manufactured.

        Nothing like the presumed back-water shacks where counterfeit and shady goods are manufactured.

  • Black

    I don’t get why everyone is talking about 50mm 1.8d being fine. The 50mm 1.8g is Superior lens to the latter. Quiet, sharper wide open, and circular bokeh from 1.8 and up, not hexagonal bokeh at f2ish and up. I loved my 50mm 1.8d but don’t miss it at all after using the 1.8g. I don’t miss the coma either

  • Glambike

    Paying more for less. That is the hipster way.

    • Rafa R


    • Nice… people complain when something’s cheaply made in China, and now they get a lens made in Japan they complain it’s a ripoff. Even cutting a bit of wood is cheaper if it’s done in a ethically dubious factory.

      • robert

        im very happy with my chinese made 1.8D. very sharp from f/2.5 on.

        but why all this sudden 50mm craze? is it the new super wide angle or the 85/105/135 portrait lens? its just a standard lens for all around pictures. great for group shots of 2-4 people, but not great for face shots. and I like the 85 for full body shots. flatter perspective.

        • LOL. in this case, it’s even less than that. It’s a silver band of aluminium around a redesigned outer shell with identical gubbins that is getting all the attention.
          “There’s no accounting for taste” as the old saying goes.

  • Photoretouchpro

    24mm f/2.8, 35mm f/2 and 300mm f/4 VR next, please. There I said it. Make it happen.

    • Plug

      From a landscape/outdoor /travel point of view: absolutely!

      • Photoretouchpro

        1 for 3 so far!

  • Bhavya Elamukil

    I love my 50mm 1.8G I shoot weddings with just this lens.

    • You don’t even use a body? 😉

      • Bhavya Elamukil

        🙂 D800

        • Interesting combo, a D800 with a 50 1.8G… Do you think the lens does it justice?

          • Bhavya Elamukil

            The truth is all that I could afford next to my D800 was this lens. I wish I could buy a 70-200 🙁

  • Kevin

    And suddenly the second hand 50mm 1.2 price sky rockets…..

  • Saffron Blaze

    So, they took away a focus mode and charged $60 for the privilege?

  • Tommy

    A silver ring on it … big deal

    • Fred Flintstone

      I think Beyonce wrote a song about this lens……:-)

      • TheInconvenientRuth

        No no no, that was about gold rings on Nikkor lenses, I asked her.

  • mikeswitz

    You are about to take the best photograph ever and suddenly you realize…”oh shit, I only have 36 focus points”. oh well, maybe next time.

  • malchick99

    Nothing special except with the intention to deceive potential customers by ripping them off deeper. Pathetic

    • mikeswitz

      And you know this because…..
      1. You know where this lens was made.
      2. Because you’ve worked with both the 50mm 1.8 and the Df and concluded it is not possible to actually take a good picture with either of them.
      3. Nikon has no idea WTF they are doing and all their executives should be shot.
      4. You are robert or another troll.

      • robert

        another troll haha. you can tell by the language that its not me.

        but I dont think the SE 50 and the DF are ripping people off. they are good products. just overpriced IMO.

        the 50 1.4 at $1800- thats a ripoff!

        Nikon are using some ugly business practices lately and it clearly shows with their sales.

        money talks and bullshit walks, shits.

  • StarF

    Same MTF, all the same only except focus mode. Why cost extra $60 just to buy a ‘same-like’ aperture ring?

    • Scuttlebutt is that it has a more tradition manual focus action (read, less play, and tighter tolerances).

      Tolerances alone would soon equate to $60.

  • DM

    I didn’t see a comparison if it was weather-sealed… would be quite funny if it wasn’t, especially as you can ONLY by the weather-sealed Df with it in the UK!

  • Trendy Guy

    Don’t know if the rumour is true or not. But I heard Nikon is releasing a retro Brownie Box camera with a nikon 1 sensor. Sure if will be a big hit

  • usa

    Nikon’s quality commitment: “We will sell no lens before it’s paid for.”

  • R!

    That makes me want to sell all my AFS lenses and keep AFD and AIS Not!!!!!!!?
    Nikon is sinking in the Dumb Worls again this should be the Noct F1.2 design!!!!!!!

  • Neopulse

    I have this inkling feeling that, that new mirror box is going to hold something big in order for people who own pre/Ai lenses to get back this.

  • Captain Megaton

    The lens is not made in Japan. There are no tweaks to make it any easier to focus manually that the last version. The changes are cosmetic only.

    It is more expensive because it is newer. That’s the Nikon way.

  • pahill

    Apparently Kodak has taken over the council board at Nikon and are making the same kind of wise decisions. Either that or these people a just plain stupid. Too bad, I really love my Nikon Cameras, but at these pace and with this decision making there will be no Nikon in 10 years…

  • Johnny

    I just bought the 50mm f1.8 special edition (SE) off someone on Craigslist who was looking to only keep his DF. I also have the regular version of the same lens, so I compared the two and made some observations:

    1) Nikon got the design of the SE right. The black and silver combination looks sleeker and stealthier than the black and yellow of regular version. IMO, it looks way better.
    2) There is very little difference in terms of weight. It might just be in my mind, but the SE does feel *slightly* denser.
    3) Build quality of the SE is definitely better. I can’t quantify it, but the tolerances feel tighter and the silver ring running through the middle definitely gives an impression of solidity lacking in the normal version. I also like how they integrated the m/a and m switch module by molding it to the body of the lens itself rather than tacking it on with screws.
    4) The manual focus ring on the SE is a lot stiffer and not damped. The raised rubber on the ring gives better tactility, and the ring turns smoothly with less of the “gritty” feel. Focus travel is identical, so any impression of better accuracy in manual focus would probably be due to it being stiffer and smoother. Still a far cry from the old AIS lenses though.
    5) The lens is made in China, not Japan. The silver ring on the SE is definitely metal, not plastic.

    Overall, I’d say the SE is the better lens, but whether that $60 price increase is justified will be entirely up to you. For me, I got the SE for a pretty good deal at only $220, and so far I’m happy.

  • Jowe

    I’m getting the special edition — it’ll look way sexier with my red D5300. Why are you guys even arguing?!?!?!

  • Jowe

    if I’m going to walk around with a clunky DSLR, might as well put some style into it…

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