New Nikon patents: Nikkor 52mm f/0.9 and 36mm f/1.2 full frame mirrorless lenses

Nikon 52mm f/0.9 full frame mirrorless lens

Nikon 52mm f/0.9 full frame mirrorless lens

Nikon 36mm f/1.2 full frame mirrorless lens

Nikon 36mm f/1.2 full frame mirrorless lens

Nikon has new patents filed in Japan for a 52mm f/0.9 and 36mm f/1.2 full frame mirrorless lenses:

Nikon 52mm f/0.9 full frame mirrorless lens

  • f = 51.60 (focal length)
  • FNo = 0.91 (aperture)
  • ω = 46.19 (half angle of view)
  • Y = 21.63 (image height)
  • TL = 256.8 (total length)
  • BF = 18.225 (backfocus)

Nikon 36mm f/1.2 full frame mirrorless lens

  • f = 36.00 (focal length)
  • FNo = 1.27 (aperture)
  • ω = 31.0 (half angle of view)
  • Y = 20.94 (image height)
  • TL = 159.500 (total length)
  • BF = 21.673 (backfocus)

Nikon has already filed several patents for full frame mirrorless lenses in the past. Patents are no guarantee for future products, but I think everything so far points to a new full frame mirrorless camera with a new mount that can accommodate a 50mm f/0.9 lens.

Like the new Nikon Mirrorless Camera Facebook page and join the growing Nikon Mirrorless Camera Facebook group for a more detailed coverage of the upcoming Nikon mirrorless camera.

Via hi-lows-note

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  • Ricky Mackie

    New leica competitor?!

    • even faster than the Noctilux (f/0.9 vs. f/.95)

      • Spy Black

        Try THAT on an F mount. 😉

      • PhilK

        If this really is what it appears to be, then Nikon is unsurprisingly trying to regain the kind of bragging-rights on fast lenses which it relinquished after Canon’s switch to the EF mount in 1987.

        More interestingly to me given that the 52mm lens formula (15 elements!) would translate into a very expensive product – this also suggests that Nikon has completely switched course and is now going to position the new MILC as their flagship and standard-bearer camera product of the future.

        Which would be an extremely interesting development indeed.

      • Azimuth1

        Peter, are you pretty sure that new Nikon mirrorless will NOT use natively F mount?

        • no, I am not sure at all

    • karayuschij

      A Nikon for surgeons?

      • Laud Farter

        Back in the 1970-80’s, Nikon was the premier 35mm camera system and, yes, many doctors bought Nikon. These days, you should pick on tech million/billionaires instead for conspicuous consumption (surgeons look poor in comparison, especially under Obamacare). They mostly use their iphones, not Canikon, but drive Teslas/Porsches/BMW–$100K+. That is where the real money sits.

        • Laddie Crisp Jr.

          Not a surgeon but a Family Doctor! I refuse to use camera on phones and I have been with Nikon since 1989! Nikon is still the premier camera system! Oh by the way I own two vehicles a 1996 Jeep Wrangler with a clutch and a 1994 Ford Ranger (baby pick-up).

        • how do you think that obamacare made surgeons look poor? explain that. there was no pay limits in the law.

        • this site may be suppressing links, so here is the conclusion of a comprehensive study by Merritt Hawkins, the nation’s leading physician recruiting firm.

          “Far from flattening, as some Obamacare experts predicted, or even waxing in low-single digits like salaries for contractors, lending officers, beauticians, and most other workers, pay for doctors is surging.”

        • karayuschij

          If I were a surgeon I would have an Aston Martin and use a Phase One… but nobody is perfect.

  • Eric Calabros

    Nikon really hates Thom, as soon as he stated we don’t need ultra fast lenses they filled a couple​ of patents for it 🙂

    • Nikkor300f4VR

      They missed the briefing..

    • drororomon

      I was thinking we need a few good f3.5-4.5 kit lenses to start and they probably will start with the slower lenses first before releasing these bad boys a year or two later.

      • Eric Calabros

        Don’t worry about that, Nikon is master of zoom kits starting with mistrious f/3.5

      • I hope you’re wrong and they launch with a couple of solid enthusiast primes.

        • Thom Hogan

          A large 50mm f/1 is not an “enthusiast prime.” 14 elements, lot of glass bulk, big size, going to be expensive, I think.

          • manattan

            Bulky, heavy, and expensive… Nikon is really targeting all the benefits of mirrorless right out of the gate 😉

            • jmb2560

              Yes, think Leica SL: bulky/heavy lenses…

            • Umano Teodori

              have u seen the video here on nr with weight and price comparison of camera systems?

          • ZoetMB

            I think “expensive” is an understatement. It might be in Leica territory if they actually release it. The 35mm 1.4G from Nikon is $1700. This would be a lot more, no?

            The Leica 0.95 50mm is $10,795 (black) to $10,995 (silver). The 50mm 1.4 is $3895 to $4395, depending upon finish. Canon’s f1.2 50mm is $1349. Sony’s 50mm f1.4 is $1400.

            You’d think for Leica’s prices there would be great customer service. But I’ve been reading some horror stories about the Leica customer service from their New Jersey depot.

            Does anyone need such a fast (and large) lens these days considering ever better sensors? Especially for a mirrorless, Nikon should be doing the opposite: if they’re doing new lenses for mirrorless, they should be as small and light as possible. Nikon’s AI-S lenses almost all took 52mm filters, much smaller than today’s AF lenses.

            • Thom Hogan

              Yeah. Leica has certainly slipped in reputation quite a bit. Flakey firmware, lots of QC issues, availability and repairs getting spotty or at least slow.

            • Availability and repairs were always spotty with Leica. I personally think they did a very good job with the M10.

            • They are also profitable 🙂

            • Thom Hogan

              Sure, and considerably smaller. So that’s Nikon’s plan, then? Be small but profitable? That would mean we should all be looking elsewhere as pros.

            • Tony Beach

              Not just pros, but enthusiasts who aren’t rich too.

            • ITN

              Well, Leica and Sony/Zeiss are very expensive also. It’s still likely Nikon will be less expensive than those, aperture for aperture.

            • Tony Beach

              Meanwhile Canon will be eating their lunch, all three of them if Nikon really wants to join that club (Leica and Zeiss that is, I wouldn’t characterize Sony as an elitist camera company).

            • ITN

              Well, it is expected that Canon will take half of the market.

              Canon is currently offering only one EF-M prime. They offer nice wide and standard zooms and the one prime is very good but they aren’t offering a complete lineup of EF-M lenses for serious use. So there is plenty of the mirrorless market that Canon isn’t touching at all – for now.

              Many Sony lenses are expensive compared to Nikon / Canon DSLR lenses.

            • Tony Beach

              If Canon represents half the market, and Leica and Zeiss represent a small sliver, then which one should Nikon be targeting?

            • ITN

              Obviously the majority of camera buyers aren’t very demanding or discriminating. Maybe it’s time to let go of this market and focus on demanding users and satisfying their needs.

            • Tony Beach

              Two points. First is that if by “very demanding and discriminating” you mean they are going to fork out for an f/.09 lens that does nothing practical for them, then yeah, that’s just so much eye candy for camera geeks to drool over. Second, as someone who is reasonably demanding and discriminating, I take some offense to the implication that my not being impressed with or swayed by the existence of such a lens in the system I use means I’m not “very” demanding and discriminating.

              This reminds me quite a bit of the nonsense discussions raging at DPR over a third of a stop high ISO or low ISO DR, negligible resolution differences, etcetera, etcetera. It’s only important to camera geeks and has no bearing whatsoever on a company failing or succeeding.

            • ITN

              I didn’t say or imply anything about you.

              Canon is taking a large share of the mirrorless ILC market with their EOS M system which has only a few lenses mostly consumer zooms, a short macro lens and a moderate wide angle prime. If Nikon were to copy Canon in their mirrorless approach, there would be nothing for me. I think Nikon should not go after the largest market share because most ILC buyers never buy more than 1-2 kit zooms. Canon is building factories where robots make the whole lens including collimation and testing. This means the cost of manufacturing is really low and it would be very difficult for Nikon to compete with them for these customers. I think Nikon should just let Canon have this market and concentrate on offering something else. These 50/0.9 and 35/1.2 are examples of something else, of course they’d offer basic lenses as well but it’s important that it doesn’t stop at offering a 22mm f/2 prime and a few f/4-f/5.6 or f/3.5-f/6.3 zooms for APS-C.

              IMO Nikon should make mirrorless and DSLR cameras and lenses that complement each other by filling gaps that the other system can not do. For example, there is no mirrorless camera that focuses a long fast supertele instantly like a D5 or 1D X II would do, even in low light. DSLRs do long tele action well. In fact no mirrorless system even offers such a lens. On the other hand the autofocus F mount primes stop at f/1.4 and mirrorless gives Nikon a chance to make faster lenses. Another area which they could do is tilt shift lenses with greater freedom of movement, shorter focal lengths, and less expensive construction. Sony have demonstrated that they can do an ultrawide zoom of excellent quality but much lighter weight, more compact, and less expensive than DSLR lenses by bringing out the 12-24/4. This is capitalizing unique advantages offered by the short flange distance of the mirrorless camera. For a long time it seemed most Sony mount lenses weren’t going to offer size advantages compared to DSLR lenses in 35mm full frame, but it seems after all that there will be some where the difference is clearly in favour of the mirrorless.

              Obviously Nikon will do basic lenses as well but it’s important that they don’t stop there. If you don’t need these fast primes that is fine; there are plenty of different products Nikon can make to satisfy different customer needs. I just don’t want them to offer one prime lens and a f/6.3 kit zoom and stop at that.

            • Tony Beach

              Well, I’m among those who does not “need” an f/.09 lens, and I would question why anyone needs that aperture in a lens.

              Nikon needs to start by offering an f/2 prime, something they’ve only done once with their DX lens line up.

              Nikon could sell an f/0.9 lens to everyone that wants and can afford one, and go broke doing it because it wouldn’t amount to more than a drop in the bucket.

              Regarding T/S lenses, using a tripod wipes out the size issues, and Nikon should be refreshing their older PC-E lenses to make them more functional.

              As I said before, Nikon could compete more with mirrorless just by improving their DX DSLR lineup. A more competent but still small DSLR, some pancake lenses, and then you have a system you can sell to newbies and enthusiasts alike. Nikon doesn’t lack know-how, as Thom has pointed out, Nikon lacks vision. Making a gee-whiz lens (and it isn’t even that “gee-whiz”) that appeals to almost no one isn’t visionary, it’s myopic in the extreme.

            • ITN

              I like the images that I’ve seen from the Leica Noctilux 50/0.95 a lot. I can’t afford Leica but perhaps could afford a Nikon version. Of course Nikon won’t be only selling lenses with extreme specifications but also other types including zooms and smaller aperture primes.

              Nikon’s current tilt shift lenses work fine for many purposes even today. Increased freedom of movements are shown in the 19mm with a price that is almost double that of the previous ones. Yes, it is a problem. The 19mm PC could easily have 25% lower weight, size and cost if designed for a mirrorless camera, and provide greater freedom of movements at the same time. The narrow and deep F mount is what makes the design so complicated and expensive. The size and weight of tilt shift lenses matter a great deal when traveling as as all the weight adds up and one needs different lenses for photographing events, action (yes, I travel to photograph events and still want to photograph architecture with appropriate tools) and portraits. The total weight must be below carry on limits and when walking tens of kilometers per day on foot it does really start to feel.

              The problem with smaller aperture primes is that Nikon just made six new f/1.8 (which is for all practical purposes the same as f/2) primes at very reasonable prices, low weight, and excellent AF and image quality, but Sigma sells very large and heavy f/1.4 primes at about the same cost, and people just scream towards what they see as a bargain and forget that it’s actually very heavy. Sigma’s large primes’s huge success may have motivated Nikon’s 105/1.4 and the patents for 50/0.9 and 35/1.2. The f/1.8 primes are sitting in warehouses and not being purchased. So you’re lucky if Nikon decides to make those f/2 or f/1.8 primes for mirrorless as they just got burned making a whole series of lenses which doesn’t sell in the expected way despite being highly practical and good for real world photography.

            • Tony Beach

              I would like to drive a Ferrari, so what? Toyota, Honda, et al make cars like that, but they’re not a Ferrari or Lamborghini. If Nikon makes a $3000 version of a $10,000 lens it will be the same thing. You might be thrilled to have one, but it isn’t really going to help Nikon at all and will just be a “poor man’s substitute” for the “real” thing.

              You’re arguing both sides of this too. On the one hand Nikon should make mirrorless and a whole bunch of smaller T/S lenses to save weight (a fool’s errand); but on the other hand it should be 135 format and have extremely fast lenses (both of which add significant size and weight to the system).

              Nikon’s f/1.8G primes are not as small as they should be, and they are designed for Nikon’s FX cameras which is again a larger system than DX. On both counts Nikon can do better, so a significant savings in size can be had just by optimizing Nikon’s current DX DSLR system. Nikon losing market share because they make a lower priced camera system that is crippled isn’t going to be turned around by making a camera system that caters to an even wealthier clientele than their current FX user base, and you’re clearly not getting that.

            • ITN

              I’m not arguing that Nikon should not make lightweight prime lenses with moderate maximum apertures, but I’m just trying to explain why they might not: they recently made just that for DSLRs (the f/1.8 primes, which in my opinion are great lenses) and yet people went and bought Sigma 1.4’s instead, because they were seen as greater bang for buck. Perceived bang for buck ruled over compactness and light weight. Nikon may need those f/1.2 and f/0.9 just to be noticed since the f/1.8 didn’t do it. Sigma will just underprice Nikon out of the market by offering f/1.4 for the same money if Nikon go for f/2 or f/1.8 for their mirrorless. And that’s a huge image and financial problem for Nikon.

              I like both moderately fast and very fast primes myself. Moderately fast lenses are great for travel, walkaround, and fast-fast lenses are great to make images that have a distinctive look. I would like them to make both. If you look back, Nikon have patented lenses for FX and DX mirrorless that are with more modest specifications.

              For PC wide angle lenses there is a clear advantage to making them for mirrorless. The shorter flange distance makes them easier to design and allows greater freedom of movements. They could even fit in autofocus and auto-tilt based on analysis of the live view image, if they wanted to make something really new that no one has made yet. There is no disadvantage for making tilt shift lenses for mirrorless apart from DSLR users not being able to use them. This is one area which no one has exploited and Nikon have a window of opportunity. This is why I think they should go for it. Nikon need headline products that are unique to attract people to the brand, even if most people don’t end up buying those expensive lenses they still affect purchase decisions and perceived value of the brand. And specialists will use them and enhance the image of Nikon as provider of professional tools. Which in turn helps to market the other stuff for regular users.

              A Ferrari is likely 100x as expensive than a Nikon 50/0.9. So it’s not a fair analogy. A Ferrari has very little practical value, and is very expensive to maintain and use, does not work properly in a city etc. A 50/0.9 with the right design can give distinctive images and likely has very little costs that you have to pay while using it.

            • Tony Beach

              I’ll tell you what, those Sigma lenses are not “greater bang for the buck,” far from it. Indeed, they are too rich for my blood, and I don’t want to carry that weight either (yet I’m still a devotee of DSLRs). Sigma is not underpricing Nikon — their 50mm f/1.4 Art costs twice as much as Nikon’s f/1.4G — sure some believe it’s worth it, and I’m not going to argue that, but it’s not less expensive or necessarily a better value.

              Nikon also did the 105/1.4E, so it’s not like they haven’t done large and rather expensive lenses too. Still, going higher is not the answer to their problems, it’s the other way around.

              Try not to overdo the analogy thing. Cars are not cameras — cars are often necessities whereas cameras almost never are (even most pro photographers are offering a luxury service). The costs are also completely different, so you are an odd fellow (or a pro) if you have spent more on your camera gear than on your car and its maintenance.

              Finally, there are many examples of DX lenses that are smaller than their FX counterparts. Try making an f/1.8 28-52mm FX lens and see how much larger, heavier, and more expensive it is than the Sigma 18-35/1.8 lens. Equivalence with FX lenses is not required, so aperture for aperture (not equivalent apertures) and focal length for focal length (not to mention that then we are talking about equivalent focal lengths) DX lenses shorter than about 70mm are smaller than FX lenses. As an example, look at Nikon’s 35/1.8G for FX compared to their 35/1.8G for DX — the FX lens is more 50% heavier and larger and 250% more expensive than the DX lens. BTW, that 35mm DX lens was a huge seller for Nikon, so not a disappointment at all, and from what I see the Sigma 18-35/1.8 is doing very well too.

            • Tony Beach

              One other point about the T/S lenses. I would rather have the ones made for DSLRs and use an adapter with them on a mirrorless camera than go out and buy dedicated mirrorless T/S lenses I could not use on my DSLR. I bet I’m not alone in that.

            • El Aura

              I don’t know, I’d say Leica’s reputation for quality control, competence in electronics, and repair performance has been so-so since the M8 in 2006.

            • Thom Hogan

              The Leica issue list looks just like the Nikon issue list, only most people don’t see it because they don’t have the volume. Sensor delamination, black dots, firmware lockups, you name it, they’ve had it.

            • I don’t think Leica had more or less issues reported than any other camera manufacturer. The M9 sensor was a big issue for them but they are still fixing it for free. The rest are all fixed/fixable with a firmware update. The Leica Q has been an amazing camera. I have no issues also with the M10. Leica is also very responsive to problems – just look at the latest TL2 issue: it was reported just a few days after the camera launched and it was fixed a few more days later.

          • Agreed, that thing is enormous. I’m not hoping for a giant 50mm f0.9 but for a good, inexpensive, reasonably compact 35mm or 50mm f1.8.

    • Mike Gregory

      Maybe Thom is using reverse psychology. Say its not needed so Nikon make it hahahahahahahaha

      • Eric Calabros

        But his argument is valid. Why you need ridiculously thin dof? and its not like film days that you beg for more light gathering because of ISO limitations. Even D850 produces nice grain image at ISO 6400.

        • Piooof

          On a 50 mm, portraits can have razor-thin DOF and usually benefit from it. On a 35 mm, it’s useless and this f/1.2 is just a macho tour de force.
          Nikon is criticized even by its fans (mostly by its fans?) for a perceived lack of innovation, so it’s certainly a way to recapture interest. But maybe a too expensive one to be put in practice…

          • C_QQ_C

            “On a 50 mm, portraits can have razor-thin DOF and usually benefit from it.”
            Doubt that if you would do portrait at F.9 and only get like the pupil of 1 eye sharp, and the rest is OOF if that would be very useful in general ..

            • Piooof

              It depends which kind of portraits you shoot. For most models, there’s no need to have 45 MP of skin imperfections, even if more or less skillfully masked by several layers of makeup. A perfectly sharp iris is sometimes all you need, or all what the model is happy to see.

            • Vince Vinnyp

              Well I take the opposite view. DOF is approximately a function of aperture and magnification factor focal length has little to do with it. A full height portrait taken at 2.8 has about the same depth of field with a 300mm as a 24mm. A fast medium wide allows subject separation for group photos or larger subjects at reasonable working distances.

            • ITN

              If it is a whole body portrait, plenty of the subject will be within the DOF at f/0.9.

            • saywhatuwill

              But it would be the best looking pupil ever photographed. Lol

          • Spy Black

            It’d be nice to think that mirrorless can inspire Nikon to once again have the chutzpah they had back in the 70s when they were the most aggressively innovative camera system manufacturer the world has ever known.

            • Thom Hogan

              But is 35mm f/1.2 and 50mm f/1 really chutzpah, or is it simply another of the mind-numbing “we can top that number” games?

              Realistically, Nikon needs to make cameras and lenses that sell. In quantity. With performance that is best in class.

            • Spy Black

              How many people bought the. 6mm? 13mm? 2000mm? Noct?

              While I agree with what you’re saying, there needs to be class leading products that show the best that Nikon can be, and be better than others. Just look at the 105mm f/1.4.

            • Thom Hogan

              But my point is that a 35mm f/1.2 and a 50mm f/1 that are huge is not something that is “better than others.” Those two lens designs are not something the others can’t do. Heck, Olympus is already doing a series of f/1.2 primes. But there’s nothing stopping Canon and Sony from doing the same thing in full frame mirrorless.

              The 105mm f/1.4 is a far better example. It actually does a lot of things simultaneously: fills a hole, establishes a new mark, solves user problems, and fits into the full lineup very nicely.

              At the end of the day, Nikon needs to sell more cameras and lenses. They’re going backwards with that right now. A 35mm f/1.2 and 50mm f/1 won’t solve that in any way. Indeed, if that were to be their emphasis in mirrorless, they would rapidly become a smaller player.

            • ITN

              There is actually an art in lens design beyond mere specifications of a lens. I am sure others can make 50/0.9 or 35/1.2 but what the images look like is another story.

              Nikon may be patenting these for mirrorless because they haven’t been able to make them for the F mount but would have wanted to. It is also a statement that if they make a full frame mirrorless they are going for the high end and are going to provide lenses that others do not yet have. They do have to do that to have a shot at market share given that there are already complete mirrorless systems that cover the basics.
              Nikon have to offer unique products that no one else is offering, to get started.

            • Thom Hogan

              Oh come on now. Let’s see if I get this straight: we’re supposed to applaud Nikon for showing that they can design lenses that aren’t going to be user important but ignore the fact that they’ve continued to NOT make lenses that users have demanded (buzz, buzz, and more)?

              That speaks to a company living in a glass castle on a hill far from the village, ignoring the villagers with rocks gathering around them.

            • Tony Beach

              “…living in a glass castle on a hill far from the village, ignoring the villagers with rocks gathering around them.”

              Funniest metaphor ever.

            • ITN

              My point is just that the common stuff is already available from several makers and by adding competition to it and making more of the same Nikon and Canon would risk making all manufacturers of these things unprofitable. What Nikon can do is make what is not yet available and try to make a profit from it (because it is not common).

            • Thom Hogan

              What you’re really saying is what I’ve been saying for some time: which is there is no imagination in Tokyo that can conjure up a camera that solves real user problems in better ways. Like workflow.

            • ITN

              Well the workflow is quite a bit easier now than it was with film. 🙂

            • Thom Hogan

              I’d disagree.

            • ITN

              So, in your view, with film it was easier to go from pressing the shutter buttton to having a print or a book with the pics in your hand, or having the image published? Time must have really goldened those memories. What I remember is that it was almost impossible to get a decent print from a slide and reportedly the printing houses had to do a lot of manipulations to make it possible.

            • Thom Hogan

              Yes. Because others did the work. I shot, handed my film to a lab, selected from it, handed it back to a lab/agent/editor. My workflow was fairly simple.

              Today to get the best image quality, I spend a lot of time dealing with images, backing them up, transmitting them in inefficient ways, and have to do all the post processing and book design work myself.

              For the general public, smartphones won because they shortened the workflow: take the picture, send it somewhere from the phone. Maybe apply a filter and some text.

              Now do I want all the control I get in digital? Sure, I’m a control freak. The general public is not. Do I like not having to pay others to do the work? Sure, to a degree.

              Look, when I shot sports the first time around in the film era, I shot my film, drove to the airport and put the unprocessed film on a plane to NYC. I didn’t see it again until it had been used and returned. Pretty simple workflow compared to what I have to do now.

            • ITN

              If you required the same level of control at the output as you get now, it was exceedingly difficult to achieve and somebody else was unlikely to do that for you.

              For society what counts is the total amount of work that is required to achieve the goals, and that is now less than it was with film and many things one could simply not do, can now be achieved. If you don’t want to do it all yourself you can hire people to do it for you.

            • Thom Hogan

              Okay, since you bring that up, I’ll say this: to get the same level of control then required pretty much the same workflow as now. Your contention is that it is easier. Not really. I used Photoshop 1.0 and a slide scanner. Not a lot different than using a card reader and raw converter.

            • ITN

              And before that, when there was no scanner?

            • jmb2560

              If Nikon wants to make a difference in mirrorless, and assuming they bring up a new mount and a new generation of lenses, why not switching to a larger format (43.8×32.9mm) à la GX50? Using an adapter for FX to benefit from the existing range of lenses would make all current users happy while it would certainly make the camera future-proof.

            • Thom Hogan

              The problem is price. The GFX is about as affordable as we can expect small MF to be at the moment. And that market is not only pretty much saturated at the moment, but they’re all using the same Sony sensors. Nikon would already be at a lens disadvantage day one. And all that for one stop gain?

            • Spy Black

              “Those two lens designs are not something the others can’t do.”

              So has Canon made a 35mm f/1,2 or 5xmm f/0.9? They can easily make one, right? It can easily be argued that the 6mm, 13mm, 2000mm, and Noct could also have been made by anyone else as well. But they weren’t. They were made by people that were thinking outside of the box, in ways no one else was.

              That’s exactly what I’m hoping to see in Nikon as they enter the mirrorless realm, because that is exactly what we need of Nikon to do.

            • Thom Hogan

              You might ask yourself why Canon hasn’t done such lenses. At the level we’re talking about–I’m assuming we’re talking about real image quality, not the f/0.95 low contrast wonders we’re getting out of China—there just isn’t much of a market for them.

              What we don’t need is Nikon proving they can make something we won’t buy. We need them to make something we will buy.

            • El Aura

              Canon did, they had their 50 mm f/1.0. And they still have two f/1.2 lenses.

            • Spy Black

              Why Canon didn’t do it? For the same reason nobody else made the legendary Nikkors. They didn’t think about it.

              I find it odd that you keep harping about Nikon making these lenses as if it’s some tragic mistake. Do you honestly think this is all they’re going to offer? Let’s get real here. There are obviously going to be bread & butter optics for their mirrorless offering. Let’s face it, anyone can spit out a 24-70 in their sleep. Stuff like these lenses are the things that will help to make the system stand out from the crowd. Although we don’t really know at this time if these lenses will materialize, I sincerely hope they do for that very reason.

            • Thom Hogan

              Let me put it this way, of the next five lenses I believe Nikon is going to announce, none of them are these two strange patents. And if they were, they would not help a new mirrorless system out of the gate.

              Go to your local dealer. Ask them if they would stock a US$3000 35mm and US$3000 50mm prime for mirrorless. The answer will be no (unless they’re Adorama, Amazon, B&H, who will stock anything). So I fail to see how such lenses would help Nikon in any meaningful way.

              If we’re going to look at this the Formula 1 way as someone suggested, making these two lenses as their entry into mirrorless would be akin to Race on Sunday, Don’t Have Anything People Will Buy on Monday.

              I’ve heard details of what Nikon is racing to get ready this year. This ain’t it.

            • Thom, what is Nikon racing to get out this year?

            • Thom Hogan

              If I were a betting man, I’d place my money on Red (DX with three initial lenses).

            • Meaning DX mirrorless camera? Or another DX DSLR?

            • Thom Hogan

              DX mirrorless cameras (plural), one kit zoom, two unspecified lenses in late 2017, followed by an FX mirrorless using same mount in 2018.

            • Thanks, very interesting. I have not heard anything about a DX mirrorless, at least not yet. I am assuming a new mount, correct?

            • Thom Hogan

              From the source: this was fast tracked very recently, and yes, it’s a new mount. Moreover, that mount will have a DX/FX split like the F-mount.

              As I noted in my recent article, Nikon has pretty much prototyped in some way virtually every mirrorless option they could think of. This was one of them.

            • Eric Calabros

              Please ask him about throat size. We all have reserved a hysterical reaction to that damn number .

            • KnightPhoto

              Alright let’s get the party started – thanks Thom

              Late 2017 is definitely an improvement. Would be nice if one of the DX cameras was a video monster, but heh we might be talking D3400/D5600 level of the lineup. Regardless we’ll be able to see what the mount is and start talking about the efficacy of the adaptor even if the cams that come out are low-end.

            • Spy Black

              I agree, and though I’m sure some standard issue optics will come out of the gate, I suspect something like this will still be part of it.

            • Thom Hogan

              I would bet you’re wrong.

              Seriously, think about it. Nikon’s in a rock and hard place right now. If they start making primes better than F-mount, they effectively say “the F-mount is dead.” That would be the stupidest thing for them to do.

              They want to do the opposite, and the only way to do that is either an F-mount mirrorless, or the way Canon is doing it, with a new mount that can easily adapt legacy lenses but starts with entry lenses at lower price points.

            • Spy Black

              There’s nothing stopping them from doing both. I suppose we’ll just have to wait and see.

            • blackTIE

              To be fair, we don’t know if or when these patents of very large aperture lenses will turn into real products. Nikon will probably come out first with consumer zooms and moderate fast primes for the lower than 1200 dollar milc bodies.

            • PhilK

              I think that’s true, but probably a bit less a matter here of “aggressively innovative” and more a matter of trying to regain some of their corporate pride in terms of “specsmanship” that they lost to Canon after Canon adopted the EF mount and released many different fast lens models that Nikon never had a response to.

              Many of which are not particularly practical, besides the bragging rights. And Nikon is nothing if not a proud company that has probably really chafed at losing that halo over the years.

              Especially since the last 5 years has seen Nikon following Canon on DSLR lenses in many ways rather than leading. I’m talking about fluorite elements, diffractive elements, silent stepper AF, electromagnetic diaphragm, etc. Then there were the Nikon innovations copied right away by Canon like nanoparticle coating, fluorine coating, etc.

          • Thom Hogan

            How is “making fast primes” innovation? Been happening for decades.

            The question is whether this is a real market or not.

            The problem with a 35mm f/1.2 and 50mm f/1 is that you STILL need a 35mm f/2 and 50mm f/1.4 that are smaller and less expensive. Otherwise you’re just talking Leica territory. And if Nikon were going to make a camera/lenses in that price range, they’d be better off doing what Fujifilm did and use small MF.

            • Eamon Hickey

              It’s technically interesting — the 50/.9 block diagram would make a nice piece of wall art! — but I agree that it’s not very imaginative as a marketing tactic.

            • geofflivingston

              I’ll buy it if the camera is any good.

            • Thom Hogan

              I think we can safely say this is a US$2000+ lens as specified. And it’s huge. Are you sure?

            • geofflivingston

              Yes, I am sure. I am not one to get stuck on old ways. If a new product is as good (or damn close) and has its own advantages such as size or speed, then I’m buying. I already have three full frame Nikons. They all shoot well. If this is in the same class I would be interested.

            • ITN

              More likely $5000+.

            • Thom Hogan

              I did a little closer look and comparison to existing Nikon product pricing. I’ll go with US$3000-3500 as most likely, but US$5000 isn’t out of the question. It would mean that Nikon executives need to get out more, though ;~).

            • ITN

              You forgot to add the “mirrorless premium” to the price of these Nikkors. Check for example Zeiss 135/2.8, Sony 55/1.8 and 35/2.8 prices for Sony E mount and compare with prices of comparable Nikon or Canon DSLR mount lenses.

            • Proto

              unless Nikon makes f/1 lens at less cost. That will be differentiator instead of being a Fuji imitator. That kind of “innovation” will create huge marketing buzz (i.e. drive sales) and make i-phone swingers consider even carrying a camera (drive volume)

            • Thom Hogan

              I don’t get the Fujifilm imitator part. There are all kinds of ways that Nikon could differentiate if they use FX. Things that Fujifilm couldn’t duplicate easily, such as a higher resolution sensor.

          • ITN

            No, the criticism is not really for lack of innovation but lack of mirrorless which these people think is synonymous with innovation. IMO mirrorless in most cases is just a camera without optical viewfinder, and as such not interesting to me.

            • PhilK

              Uhh, that doesn’t mean it’s a “viewfinder-less” camera, it means it has a different kind of viewfinder, eg electronic.

              The both have their pluses/minuses.

              But I don’t think it’s a real question that eventually the mirrors will disappear from even the high-end cameras. It’s just a question of when that will happen. From the looks of these patents, Nikon may be embracing that future a lot faster than I ever suspected.

            • ITN

              I won’t buy a camera with an EVF so this kind of development isn’t useful to me.

            • PhilK

              That’s fine but let’s not redefine the English language to suit your biases, then – by implying that because your preferred viewfinder isn’t there, it must not have a viewfinder at all. 😉

              Some day EVFs will compete more closely with OVF for image quality and other characteristics, as well as providing their traditional unique benefits. Then you’ll have to come up with a new reason not to like them. 😀

            • ITN

              I didn’t say it would not have any viewfinder just that it won’t have an optical viewfinder. I am sure they will offer an EVF.

      • neonspark

        nah, his “people want dx lenses” went ignored for yeas 😀

        • ITN

          People who want DX lenses don’t actually buy anything much. Pentax and Fuji have lots of DX lenses and extremely small market share. The top three (Canon, Nikon and Sony) ignore the DX prime market and dominate the ILC market.

          • Thom Hogan

            Funny. They’ve been keeping Tokina in business ;~).

    • neonspark

      Thom has been arguing they should be using the F-mount on their mirrorless for years even as sony, canon, and now nikon accept adapters are a much smarter way to transition forward.

      • Thom Hogan

        I still believe that Nikon missed a turn.

        Their success has always been basically backwards legacy, not new markets. The D1 was about the only exception to that, and in mirrorless Nikon will be last with an APS-C or bigger product. Last.

        Nikon’s lenses have long not been readying themselves for the turn that’s coming. We got f/1.8 primes that are bigger than they really need to be, for instance. We didn’t get a full DX lens set. We got only one PF lens. The FX lens redesigns are not on a diet ;~). They never delivered a full and rational CX lineup, which makes us all wonder if they can deliver a new mirrorless lineup.

        At this point, they are poorly positioned for anything in introducing a new mirrorless camera with a bigger sensor. Both choices they have (use F mount, make new mount) are fraught with problems.

        • br0xibear

          They should just go with DX, kill two birds with the new DX lenses that have been missing so far.
          But Nikon’s strategy never made any sense to me…so they’ll probably do the opposite, lol.

          • Thom Hogan

            The thing I always say to Nikon execs is this: your stated goal is to top Canon as the number one maker of cameras. You’ve failed to do that with your previous strategies and tactics. Might it not be that your strategies and tactics weren’t correct?

            • PhilK

              Nikon’s pride and bravado seem to be a blessing and a curse.. lately probably more of a curse, eg when it blinds you to competitive mistakes.

              What I would hope Nikon would do is rebuild their organization to really pamper their customers with superior services and support, this is what NPS and regional service-centers laid the foundation for back in the day, and lately much of that was sacrificed to bean-counter cost-savings.

              All you have to do is look at what Apple did to see the wisdom in this approach. Apple consistenly makes a higher-margin on their products than any other competitor and this is largely because they have successfully cultivated a quality reputation largely by pampering their customers, giving their product a unique and refined design language, and the company’s marketing staying on-message at all times and being a continuous, powerful presence.

            • Thom Hogan

              Go to your Nikon dealer today. Ask him how the D850 rollout is doing…

              Nikon didn’t rebuilt their organization when ASML came along and challenged them. There’s no evidence that they’re rebuilding it now. Just the opposite. Slowly but surely cost cutting is killing the subsidiaries, who are the ones that are really providing the customer-facing support.

              It may all be fine and dandy to project what “might be if only”, but the reality is this: Coolpix allowed to wither, Nikon 1 totally mismanaged, DL a nightmare, KeyMission a total dud in the market that forced them to have to buy back dealer inventory, consumer DX fading away.

              Four camera companies where cameras aren’t their primary business have beat Nikon, where cameras ARE their main business, to solid mirrorless businesses, and mirrorless is the only spot in cameras where there is apparent growth.

              So until I see signs of this “new Nikon,” I’m going to have to believe that we are going to have to continue with the “old Nikon.” That company happens to make great high prosumer/pro DSLRs and (mostly telephoto) lenses. It also breaks a lot of things along the way, and it’s not at all customer friendly.

            • manattan

              You should expand and turn you last reply into a post on your DSLRbodies site. Tie in the financial metrics you mentioned above with a plot showing year over year declines and it would make a thought for a provoking read.

              The other thing that you have not written on is adapters for mirrorless and may make a nice article for sansmirror. Sony-to-canon, canon EF to EF-M, Canon to m4/3, even Nikon F to Nikon 1. It looks like everyone including Apple loves adapters and dongles these days. The question is how much forcing consumers to adapters causes lost sales. Apple may be able to get away with it, but many other android manufacturers have seen their jackless phones flop. If Nikon goes the adaptor route, will they be an Apple or an Android?

            • Eamon Hickey

              Your point is well taken, and as I’ve said before many times, I stand behind no man in my criticism of Nikon management mistakes. Those mistakes cost me personally tens of thousands of dollars when I sold for Nikon on commission. Those lost earnings, if salted away in my 401(k), might be worth a million dollars or more now.

              All that said, I think it’s well to remember that Nikon has earned billions of dollars in profits selling cameras over the past 20 years. Canon has made several billion dollars more than Nikon. But nobody else comes close; indeed, I think there’s about a 99% probability that no other major camera company has earned any profits at all, in aggregate, over that period — i.e. what profitable years a few of them have had were offset by their loss-making years.

              I don’t mean to diminish Nikon’s mistakes — and I worked for them when they were 10X dumber than they are now. They lost big money in the camera division in several of the years when I worked there (not my fault, I claim in my own defense). But they (the camera division) has not had a losing year since 1996. Canon has an even longer profitability streak — likely going back to 1990 — but nobody else comes close.

            • PhilK

              Just wanted to say (in part as someone who worked in the photo industry myself at one time), I for one appreciate your insider information and data, it is a valuable contribution here.

            • Thom Hogan

              I’m beginning to wonder if Nikon’s “profits” are really that. You know that if they continue on the volume path that they’re on they’re going to start having to restructure Imaging. Which brings us to the exact same problem as they had with Precision: very profitable business right up to the point where it went into total collapse. Then it just ate money and pulled billions of yen off Nikon’s bottom line.

              I tend to evaluate companies more on cash flow and ROI. If I’m to believe Nikon’s numbers, those are okay, they actually increased cash in the last year. But then I look at other parts and I see things like a constant decline in Net Income from Continuing Operations, now 0.5% of revenue.

              In four years they almost halved their total sales. Now they’ve managed to keep the gross income on that relatively constant, which tells me they’re managing to that number (and the ability to pay a dividend, it appears). Unfortunately, that contraction can’t continue for the next four years. They’re showing signs in the underlying numbers that they are straining to hold that gross income level.

              As they say in the business: past performance is no indicator of future performance. So all those previous profits are just that: previous.

            • neonspark

              Their strategy was to stick with the F-mount for far, far too long 😉

        • Laud Farter

          Not only did Nikon miss a turn (or two), it seems their execs have no map nor map-reading skills.

    • Thom Hogan

      We don’t need these lenses, do we? Take a close look at how big they’ll be, too.

    • ITN

      That’s right. Nikon is emphasizing the high end now.

    • Dmitry Anisimov

      patent claims are usually filed 1.5 years before they get published.

    • ShitMyNameWontF

      whos thom, and why does he/she matter?

      • Eric Calabros

        Thom is Optimus Prime in Nikon camp. He can transform from a wildlife photographer to a financial analyst to a business adviser to troll hunter to a silicone valley expert to an art critic.

  • Nikkor300f4VR

    Wow for the BF distance.. Yess!

  • Nikkor 50mm f/0.9 – this is how you gain mirrorless market share 🙂

    • Indeed, this is surprising – quite surprising – but also very welcome.

      • I am pretty sure those lenses cannot be F-mount, so we really going into a new full frame mirrorless mount.

        • Eric Calabros

          But BF distance is different with DX mirrorless lenses patents. These are near 24mm, and those are like 17mm. I really hope they don’t introduce two separate mounts.

          • Piooof

            My guess is that there will be no DX mirrorless.

            • It appears that way, but keep in mind that Nikon can still announce two mirrorless cameras with a compatible mount – one DX and one FX just like Sony and Leica did.

            • Piooof

              They could, but IMHO they don’t have resources to waste on a short-lived line of cameras that would require a dedicated line of lenses too in order to have some commercial success. I bet they’ll focus on the only long-term FX option, and make it the strongest possible from the outset. A mirrorless FX D1… a M1?

            • Thom Hogan

              Sorry, but parts costs scale logarithmically with sensor size. They did in 1997, in 2007, and they still do today. Indeed, as we move more and more to custom sensors for every camera, costs are moving back upwards. So skipping APS-C means that you’re going to cede the lower cost camera market.

              Now maybe Nikon will do that, but that won’t be pretty for them long term. That’s basically the same bet the HiFi makers in Japan made.

            • sexyjon

              But mirrorless has fewer parts, no mirror for example 😉 And if they are looking to the future they could skip the mechanical shutter. They only need to figure a better way to read the sensor to be able to skip the mechanical shutter. Sony is already almost there. Instead they could introduce only one full frame mirrorless. It is also costly to make many different models. And they will surely make adapter to use the f mount lenses on the mirrorless camera. I am pretty sure they will combine the D610 and D750 in one camera soon if not skip upgrading them completely. The D850 is priced in a way that does not make much room or need for a variety of cheaper full frame models. Just my thoughts on this. And I think the 36 mm 1.2 lens is a great idea. This will be the perfect lens to use in restaurants, churches and many other dimly lit places. The 52 mm lens is maybe more of a showoff and a statement for the serious customers market.

            • Thom Hogan

              I’m pretty sure Nikon will skip the mechanical shutter, far sooner than you think. But that still doesn’t solve the problem.

              At one time a full frame sensor was 10x the cost of an APS-C sensor, and an APS-C sensor was maybe US$50. These days, yields on the simpler FX sensors have driven their costs down to maybe 5x a simple DX sensor, and you might get a DX sensor for as little as US$25. (Remember, rule of thumb is user cost is 3-3.5x parts costs, so we’re talking about US$75 versus US$375 here.)

              But look at the trendline: unique sensors in cameras (just posted a Sensor Wars article that gets to this a bit). If you’re going to go BSI, that’s an added cost. Copper wiring? Added cost. Stacked? Added cost. The trend is that sensor costs are going back up, not down.

            • sexyjon

              I agree with your arguments for sensor costs going up, not down. But in the case of Nikon the new D850 makes me doubt this trend. That is a camera with a new sensor that should have made Nikon raise the price of this new camera in comparison to older models. But it does not look like that is happening. So I am tempted to think that sensor manufacturing is getting easier in some way, even when the sensors are getting more complicated at the same time. And Canon 6d is now sold at $1.269, Nikon D610 at 1.497 and Sony 7 at $898. This is all very low for a full frame sensor cameras and makes me think that a big factor in the sensor price is the developing cost. When that is payed for it is easy to lower the camera price. And that would also mean that if you can use the same sensor in more camera models you can lower the sensor price. And probably the developing cost is also going down with each new sensor. Something must be going better with this sensor stuff when Nikon can do this D850 price with a brand new sensor.

            • Thom Hogan

              I can’t explain Nikon’s pricing. As I wrote elsewhere, it seems wrong in the US. They left money on the table, especially considering how many people are complaining today that they can’t get theirs ;~).

            • sexyjon

              Maybe they plan to write off some of the sensor developing cost by using it in the full frame mirrorless also 😉

            • Adam Brown

              Or that heavy demand suggests they priced it just right.
              Psychologically…. there can be a big difference between $3500 (mid 3k’s) and $3300 — (~about $3,000!)

              I think they were wise with the USA pricing — there won’t be any reviews about it being overpriced. It may even be perceived as a good value.
              They priced the d750 at $2300 initially IIRC… it got great initial reviews, partially because of the price point. Priced at $2500…. may have led to a different path.

            • Thom Hogan

              Again, what is the purpose of a business?

              Nikon is ignoring that (for once) in order to sell more bodies with less psychological inertia in the US? And only in the US? Doesn’t sound right to me.

            • Adam Brown

              But that’s my point — of course the purpose is to make profit. And my selling more bodies, at a slightly lower price…. and creating better perceptions about the camera, which leads to more sales….
              I suspect that this will increase their profits.
              Though truthfully… this takes accountants and data analysts and market studies, pouring over spreadsheets, to really find the perfect price point. And I’ll assume that Nikon did all that.

              Why they are pricing it more competitively in the USA then elsewhere… I’m not sure. Does NikonUSA have any role in the pricing or is it solely determined in Japan?
              Maybe they see extra reason to protect their position in the USA, which has been slower to adapt to mirrorless than other market. Maybe they value the American role in shaping global opinions. Maybe it comes down to the dollar exchange rate. I’ll admit that much of this stuff is outside of my knowledge.

            • Thom Hogan

              Right. We don’t have access to the actual data by which we could make the determination. But, my sense is that Nikon left money on the table. Lots of it.

              Note that the US is the only one having real issues with delivery on the D850. What Nikon seems to have done is create an initial frenzy in the US but not elsewhere. Meanwhile, this is also killing the D810 sales in the US and will force Nikon to lower the price of that camera soon to sell out that inventory. I’m pretty sure I’m right on this. But you’re correct, I don’t have the numbers that would allow me to confirm that.

              I’ve long suspected that the Nikon/NikonUSA (or should I say Nikon Inc?) relationship might not fly past regulators if they knew all the details. Given the pricing elsewhere, how is the US pricing not dumping?

            • Tony Beach

              Photography geeks live in their own little, and I mean little, fantasy land. Nikon could corner that market and guarantee bankruptcy.

              When consumers embraced smartphones they showed that smaller formats are fine, and most have no use of ultra-fast lenses. Some of those smartphone picture takers will want to move up to photography and become interested in buying real camera gear for that, some of those new photographers will in turn go more upscale, and some of those owning upscale gear will become even more fixated on exotic gear. By the time you get to f/1.2 lenses though you are talking about rich people with nothing better that they can think of to spend their money on — like a Ferrari, very few will have a practical use for an f/1.2 lens compared to say an f/1.4 lens or even and f/1.8 lens for that matter.

              That being the case, Nikon should make a competent, and I mean competent, DX system. They could start with the one they have. Mirrorless is besides the point, a cost saving measure mostly, so a good choice for the consumer orientated DX lines. Talk of DX going away has been with us for a long time now, but the D500 showed how wrong a lot of camera geeks were about that.

            • Konrad Dubach

              This is exactly the way to go. Long term strategy that will pay. Maybe Nikon will catch the rich first with some exotic lenses for showing the technical capabilities. With latter they can build up PR and image. But the money will be in the practical and competent gear. Around f2.0 DX lenses with good IQ, rugged and small will do for most of us. Looking forward seeing that new system, hopefully soon.

            • Piooof

              To take your analogy, the same way most BMW buyers will never afford a i8, it needs to be there to drive the sales of the low end. I believe it’s the same with f/0.9 lenses.

            • Tony Beach

              The importance of having a high end product in your line, and let’s stick with cameras and lenses here, is to have something that people can aspire to own. An f/.09 lens has only one practical purpose over an f/1.4 that I can think of, and that would be for astrophotography. I am certain that no one other than a camera geek is going to choose to buy into a camera system because it has a lens they will never use.

            • Eamon Hickey

              Right; they almost certainly will do both DX and FX in any new mirrorless mount.

              As I’ve said here before, they can, and probably will, also do mirrorless cameras with a regular F-mount. Sony essentially does the same thing now, marketing cameras in both the E-mount and the A-mount.

              For Nikon and Canon specifically, there’s a very sizeable market for all three types of cameras — hundreds of millions of dollars worth in each category. So Canon will likely do the same as well, ultimately.

            • Ivanku

              But what’s the probability that Canon will also use an adapter and a new mount for full frame mirrorless? It would be to their advantage to make it EF native

            • Eamon Hickey

              As I said, I think there’s an extremely high probability that Canon will do both — i.e. a full-frame mirrorless with a new mount (the EF-M mount) and some mirrorless models using the regular EF mount to go alongside their DSLRs using the regular EF mount.

              It don’t think it’s really very hard to figure this out. All we have to do is ask the business question: Could Canon sell a large number of Sony A7-style full-frame mirrorless cameras with an EF-M mount? Yes. Could Canon sell a large number of full-frame mirrorless cameras with the regular EF mount? Yes. It’s not an either/or choice. It’s well within their power to do both, and make money doing both. So they will.

              Are there some drawbacks and potential pitfalls to that approach? Of course. But there are big drawbacks and pitfalls to not doing it. Like missing out on a million or two unit sales over the next 5-10 years, so let’s say $1 billion or more in business. A billion dollar potential market justifies a significant investment.

            • Thom Hogan

              That would be a costly mistake.

          • neonspark

            agreed. canon and sony made HUGE mistakes with two mounts for two sensor sizes. Nikon should have one mount for two sensor sizes on mirrorless and do exactly what the legacy F mount did: offer dx-crop mode and just allow you to mount full frame lenses if you want.

            • Thom Hogan

              Huh? Canon EF-S and EF are basically the same as Nikon DX and FX. Sony E and FE are basically the same as DX and FX. What huge mistake are you talking about?

            • PhilK

              Perhaps what he means are A-mount vs E/FE mount. And IIRC the Canon MILC uses a separate mount than the DSLRs.

              I think there’s nothing wrong with creating an FF-capable MILC mount and using the same mount for DX models, and of course producing an F-mount adaptor.

              Perhaps this would entail a small compactness disadvantage for DX but I doubt Nikon is too worried about that, especially since the competition is a bit hot in that sector already anyway for them to expect to dominate it any time soon. They may just want to push FF where they have a lot better competitive position.

            • Thom Hogan

              A-mount was the same thing as F-mount: APS-C and full frame lenses living in the same mount. So one mount for different sensor sizes. If he meant what you suggest, then he clearly didn’t state his complaint correctly.

              And yes, EF-M is a different mount than EF-S/EF, but with the adapter there’s literally no difference I can see. That’s one of the benefits of Canon having made their mount switch to EF a long time ago. The all-electronic, properly positioned pins, big throat changes they made in the film era now serves them quite well.

              And that’s NIkon’s problem: serving legacy means that they have to deal with mechanical couplings, bad pin positions, and the smaller throat. They certainly can do that, but they have complications Canon did not.

            • El Aura

              Screwdrive AF is certainly an issue, but I am sure Nikon wouldn’t suffer too badly by restricting compatibility to AF-S lenses. Mechanical aperture lever is also a problem but putting an actuator into an adaptor shouldn’t be too hard. Throat diameter shouldn’t limit what can be done with an adaptor, any lens that does fine on existing (D)SLRs will do fine with an adaptor that has exactly the same internal clearing as the current mirrorbox.

              Tolerances and sagging are an issue but I wonder if it were possible to design an adaptor that connects a bit differently and more securely than native lenses. What is the biggest problem is the AF hardware and software (including communication protocols) of existing lenses combined with contrast-detect AF (and/or low-discriminiation on-sensor PDAF), but that problem exists equally if the F-mount is retained.

            • PhilK

              Yep, agreed on those points.

        • Bijan Choudhury

          Hope the adopter for F mounts retains all functionalities …

        • AlexG

          If that is the case, i hope Nikon will have an adapter for the F mount lenses and that it will allow 100% compatibility and the AF to work flawlessly.
          If not, Nikon will be throwing away the best reason for anyone invested in Nikon lenses to not look into the mirrorless system of any other manufacturer.

          • Yes, I already reported that Nikon is working on a new adapter.

        • jmb2560

          Hopefully a 43.8×32.9mm sensor with an adapter to FX.

    • Eric Calabros

      and with 14 elements. Even huge Sigma 50mm Art is 13 elements.

      • decentrist

        too much glass for a prime

      • Dmitry Anisimov

        there’s major gap between f/0.9 and f/1.4

    • silmasan

      A “Halo” lens!

    • Abhinav

      bring it on

    • Thom Hogan

      Really? I doubt it.

    • br0xibear

      Expensive, big, exotic lenses aren’t going to gain mirrorless market share…doing something similar to what Olympus, Fuji and Panasonic have done will at least bring them into the market to start with.

      Nikon have to decide what they want their mirrorless cameras to be…are they an addition to people’s DSLR or a direct replacement of their DSLR.

    • Espen4u

      Nah, unicorn-lenses. Will do as halo-products but only collectors will order them (that’s my guesstimate of course).

    • ZoetMB

      Not if it’s $3000+. See my other post.

  • low

    It has begun

  • Steve Hughes

    I assume like many others that the mirrorless product will offer full compatibility with F-mount lenses. But having some funky lenses like this, which I doubt could be done in F-mount, could give their new platform a nice little kick-start.

  • Richard Haw

    wow, that is a lot of glass! what happened, Nikon?!

    • Well, maybe they figured out that this is the way they will concur the mirrorless market 🙂

      • Richard Haw

        probably…

      • Thom Hogan

        Then I’ll bet against them.

        • PhilK

          Well, that’s a bit harsh.

          Just because they may want to release some halo lenses to regain some bragging-rights and shine-up their brand a bit doesn’t mean that their overall product line is doomed to uncompetitiveness.

          Too many other details remain to be revealed.

          • Thom Hogan

            “How they will concur [sic] the mirrorless market” is what I was responding to. They will not conquer the mirrorless market with two pound, US$3000+, fast prime lenses. Not even close. So I’d bet against them.

            Yes, harsh. But that’s a real and honest opinion of someone who follows the business side of the camera world very carefully. I’m not going to hold a punch.

            Now, yes, there must be more that we don’t know. Indeed, I’m pretty sure there’s a lot more that isn’t being discussed here. But I don’t think big, expensive, heavy lenses that others could easily duplicate is going to be an answer to any question Nikon needs to work on.

            • PhilK

              The world is full of “real and honest opinions” that are worthless. Example: current POTUS. 😀

              My real and honest opinion is that halo products have value, or highly successful companies all around the world would not have been making so many of them for hundreds of years. 😉

              Now the final analysis about whether or not Nikon is making a bad choice about the halo products they produce will have to depend on A) whether they actually produce a product that is described in the patents mentioned here, B) what the actual finished characteristics and price of this potential finished product are, and C) whether there is any evidence that the production of said product(s) actually siphoned away critical resources necessary to remain competitive as a company in other respects.

              All of which remain to be seen. 😉

            • Thom Hogan

              Thing is Phil, if I’m CEO and you come to me and say you want to do a halo product, what’s my answer going to be?

              I’m going to ask a question: how does this benefit us and drive the ROI? If you can answer that positively, I’ll green light it. If you can’t, I’m going to send you back to your desk with a lot of homework to do.

              And remember, I don’t want you stealing necessary resources to our key products just to build this halo thing. If you also tell me you need our best designers, my questions get tougher.

            • PhilK

              I think you ignore the very high likelihood that it is probably oftentimes the CEO or the board members themselves that are eager to produce aspirational or ‘halo’ products as a way to burnish a company’s image, since that is a key part of what those people are responsible for doing: managing the company’s image.

              Whereas a realistic and idealistic product manager who has the interests of the company’s product owners in mind has little reason to push for a silly astronomically-priced halo product that few customers will ever own anyway.

            • Thom Hogan

              Okay, so let’s talk about Nikon. Traditionally, Nikon has let their star engineers define what they want to work on. That’s particularly true in the lens side of the company, which is why sometimes lens choices don’t seem to be moving with what Nikon actually needs for customers.

              More than likely these patents are one of the lead optical designer’s pet project for something.

            • PhilK

              I have no way of confirming or refuting your claimed special knowledge about how Nikon does things internally.

              I do know that oftentimes the people in companies who are actually responsible for “pie in the sky” projects are the top corporate management themselves.

  • I want 50mm f/0

    • Mike Gregory

      you can FO if you like but better stay around a little longer
      Sorry couldn’t resist

    • steven8217

      Ah, that means DoF is also 0mm, nothing will be in focus, what an interesting lens…..LOL

      • silmasan

        And if we’re to go down the rabbit hole, does that mean the light gathered will be infinite or… I guess the camera will just crash when you mount it? (ERR DIV BY ZERO)

        • Dmitry Anisimov

          or a mini black hole?

      • Piooof

        You don’t really care about focus since everything is blown out (even the sensor and the photographer, actually…)

      • Michael

        Cover your lens front element in vaseline to get F0. Inexpensive lifehack.

      • PhilK

        That’s what Nikon auto-focus-stacking tech is for. 😉

    • neonspark

      there is a limit to your max fstop when light travels over air.

  • Why 36mm and 52mm? Why not 35mm and 50mm? Physics?

    • They’re never the exact nice round numbers, that’s marketing. Check the exif info for your existing lenses.

    • the patent calculations are always off – those will be 50mm and 35mm lenses

      • Thom Hogan

        No, the patent calculations are generally correct. It’s CIPA guidelines that tell camera companies to round to the nearest common number.

    • Espen4u

      Allowances for focus breathing?

  • low

    F.9 and F1.2?? What line do i sign on the divorce papers?!

    • LOL 🙂 this is Leica territories 🙂

    • steven8217

      Just skip to the last line 🙂

  • These will surely be HUGE too? Weight and size…

    • yes, 16cm long if I read the patent correctly

      • There goes the mirrorless weight saving lol

        • yes, there is no mirrorless weight saving if you want to use good glass

          • Not at this sensor size, at least.

          • neonspark

            yeah. if you want weight savings, you don’t go buy an f 0.9 lens…you want BOKEH!

          • BG

            This is true for longer lenses, not true for wide angles (e.g. Sony vs. Sigma 12-24/4).

      • Eric Calabros

        14cm, subtracting​ the flange

        • Still doesn’t feel like the pancake many will hope for 😀

          • silmasan

            45mm f/2.8P MUST return! (with AF).

            • FromTheNorth

              That would actually make sense too 😀 f/0.9 as the premium option and 2.8 for those who appreciate the size and cost benefits.

              These fast 35 and 50mm lenses are also a great way of getting Nikon shooters to invest in the new system by offering something that has so far been unobtainium in Nikon land. Will it replace my D3s and D4 for event work? Not likely. Would I buy a Nikon FX mirrorless with a 50/0.9 for street work and traveling? Heck yeah, in a heartbeat.

            • silmasan

              Yeah, personally I want a very compact 20 or 24mm and 45mm pancake plus a fast short tele (Leica’s 75/1.4 comes to mind).

        • Thom Hogan

          To put that in perspective, about as big as the 105mm f/1.4.

  • It’s good this is just 50mm, because depth of field at 0.9 will be tricky…

  • Eric Calabros

    Note that image height of 36mm design is a bit shorter, so its image circle is smaller. Expect huge vignetting (though wedding folks would like it).

  • Gordon Hamilton

    Designs to appease the spec sheet sniffers rather than real photogs

    • PhilK

      Perhaps, but these kind of products also enhance the brand image of a company, regardless how practical they are. Which is why companies continue to produce such products.

      How many Bugatti Veyrons get sold? Not very many. But it’s a definite brand-enhancer for Volkswagen to produce them. They can also benefit from technology trickle-down when developing new tech for such products.

  • Julian

    I would buy a nikon built for street photography, there really isn’t any good options from them at the moment, you don’t want a massive SLR to wave in people’s faces, the Leica M series is close to perfect in this regard, just a bit on the expensive side, so it will have to beat the Leica price tag.

    • Eric Calabros

      Imagine a barrel with space for AF and other stuff around those thick glass elements in the 52mm design and think again if you really want to hold that Abrams tank for street photography 😉

      • Julian

        Well it doesn’t have to be the 52mm – although thats a great focal length for street – you dont really need f/0.9 but 1.8 and a pancake lens would be perfect. Here’s hoping.

        • PhilK

          I’m totally a 35mm focal-length guy for street photography, so that lens would be great.

          Used to have a 35/1.4 AI-S for such things. (Before it was stolen) The optical quality wasn’t great in those days but it made some pics possible that wouldn’t have been with a slower lens.

    • steven8217

      You read my mind!
      My D800 is so loud so I get the a bit quieter D810 then the smaller D750, at the end, I need to get a 4th camera, the Fuji X100F for my street photography, there is a big product gap for Nikon where it comes to street photography!
      I do wish Fuji can have a fix 28mm or 24mm version of their X100 lines and I will get them as 35mm and 28mm/24mm, a good focal point to walk the walk 🙂

    • vFunct

      Nikon 1 V3

      • Julian

        Nikon 1 V3 is not good enough at high iso for when you are shooting in low light, plus the dynamic range suffers. I would like a full frame mirrorless – as Thom Hogan is speculating might come next year sometime.

  • Joseph

    Man, I really hope Nikon, especially after cancelling the DL series, goes all out on full frame mirrorless.

    • I think this is the idea and probably one of the reasons why they canceled the DLs.

      • Thom Hogan

        No. Simply no.

        DL cancellation has nothing to do with full frame mirrorless. Completely different stories.

        Moreover, it’s becoming more clear that the problem with DL was in the Milbeaut processor. Something didn’t work that they tried. Don’t know if that was trying to bring it down to a smaller process or not, but something about the EXPEED 6a experiment simply didn’t work.

        • MB

          Are you sure about Milbeaut processor …
          As far as I know all Nikon 1 and all new DSLR Expeeds are ARM based…
          I may be wrong of course 🙂

  • steve

    Not sure I get the excitement. How do you become top mirrorless seller with niche products such as a 50 0,9?
    “Leica competitor”. I don’t think that’s what Nikon is hoping for.
    Once you get info such territories, size and weight differences compared to dslr vanish. So if you want a great camera with a great 35 mm, why not D850 with AF-S 35 mm 1,4?
    I understand patents don’t necessarily mean they’ll make that exact product, but again, don’t get the excitement. I’d be much more interested in compact, slower, high quality glass. That’s how you integrate what you already have.

    • There is no significant size and weight advantage to full framer mirrorless cameras.

      • steve

        That’s sort of my point. You can get slimmer bodies. So smaller lenses make a lot more sense, to me at least.
        These are going to be massive, so why is it exciting that they’re mirrorless?

        • silmasan

          True, I would want compact f/2.8 primes too as I said the other day (24, 35, 50 or 45 pancake). But in this case the excitement also comes from the fact that these designs are something that can’t be done with F-mount, therefore supporting the rumor/expectations that Nikon will have a new mirrorless mount. Unless you prefer a mount that’s sticking out like sigma sd quattro’s…

        • Mirrorless is a trend and a huge marketing push. It’s a personal decision. For me a DSLR is good enough and will be for years. The only mirrorless that makes sense to me is the Leica M – there you really have a big weight and size advantage.

    • MB

      This type of lenses are more marketing stuff … and it is far better and cheaper marketing than hiring Ashton Kutcher IMHO 🙂

    • Robert Falconer

      “How do you become top mirrorless seller with niche products such as a 50 0,9?”

      Halo offerings. Race on Sunday, sell on Monday. Rest assured that there will be more “normal’ optics available at launch, too, I’m sure. But these lenses on a state-of-the-art mirrorless body will generate buzz for Nikon. And they need some buzz as the late entrant to the mirrorless party if they hope to get potential buyers to take a hard look.

      • Yes, that’s exactly what they need – some buzz and the “world’s first 50mm f/0.9 AF lens” marketing…

        • BVS

          I think making lenses that were impossible with f-mount is also a way of arguing the case as to why a new mount is needed, and why people should invest in it.

      • Thom Hogan

        While “race on Sunday, sell on Monday” has become a long-stated “truth,” I’ve actually not seen data that suggests this is true.

        • Robert Falconer

          Not intended literally. My point was that Nikon needs some halo effect with its mirrorless entry, otherwise it may just appear as an “also ran”. Frankly, the company needs some positive buzz as well. The D850 is a tremendous DSLR, but I’m not sure it’s “that” product—meanwhile, mirrorless adopters could care less about the D850, if the comments on the many fora out there are to be believed.

          • Thom Hogan

            And my point is that it isn’t a halo if pretty much everyone else can do the same thing. Especially when we’re talking patent only at this point.

            If Nikon were to show up with a 50mm lens as big as the 105mm f/1.4 as the patent suggests, that also might not be much of a halo, as Leica discovered with their huge SL lenses.

        • PhilK

          Most of the top Formula One teams/power-unit suppliers today cite the benefit of F1 competition on their sales of passenger vehicles and components. Whether that is just brand halo, or actual technology transfer. (And this is critically important as it is very costly to field an F1 team these days)

          This is the primary reason why almost all the “works” teams steadfastly support F1’s decision to use hybrid power and other fuel-efficient tech in the cars today, even when many of the fans would rather return to the old gas-guzzling, ear-splitting V10/V8 engine tech of past years. Because hybrid and other fuel-saving tech are critical technologies for any company expecting to be competitive in passenger cars today, even for modern sports cars.

          • Thom Hogan

            Let’s see, that would be AMG, Ferrari, McLaren? ;~)

            Look, it’s one thing if this were Leica doing this, it’s another thing with a crippled consumer company doing this.

            Moreover, look at all the fumbles Nikon has made attempting this in the past. For example, they had the first DSLR video. Did they manage to make that stick as a player in video? They had the first mirrorless camera with real autofocus, still basically unsurpassed by anyone six years later. Did that stick?

            You can get all caught up in the tech and forget to actually make products customers want and will buy.

            • PhilK

              There are only 4 makers of “power units” for F1 today:

              – Mercedes
              – Ferrari
              – Renault
              – Honda

              ALL of them have cited the relevance of F1 to their passenger car business as a fundamental part of why they compete in F1 today, some of them *specifically* mentioning the hybrid/efficiency aspect of the current power unit design spec as a critical part of that.

              Williams, another longstanding F1 team, does not produce entire power units, but they do produce the Engine Control Unit (ECU) that is mandated to be used on all current F1 cars. Williams has an entire corporate division devoted to commercialization of Formula One technology.

              The rest of the teams are using power units from one of the 4 suppliers indicated above (and ECUs from Williams), but many of them are also interested in the “halo” of F1 and their passenger-car business, even when there is no direct relationship between the associated passenger car division to the tech used in their F1 cars. (Example: Red Bull, whose F1 cars are co-branded with Infiniti. [Nissan] Red Bull actually uses Renault power, and all the rest of the car components are the usual bespoke F1 variety, but nonetheless Nissan clearly feels that just putting their branding on such an F1 car benefits their luxury passenger-car division.)

            • Thom Hogan

              I know what they “cite,” but I’ve also not seen any supporting material to actually quantify that in any way. It wouldn’t matter whether or not I got a benefit, I’d still claim one given how much money I’m dumping into programs like that.

              You also make an invalid implicit argument: that the only way to develop hybrid/efficiency is by being in Formula 1 racing. Nope. Not going to buy that line.

              Look, I’d be a tough director on any board of a company that tried to pull that kind of “it’s what we say BS.” Show me the numbers. Explain to me how there wasn’t a better way.

              Now if you want to do it for the ego thing, great. But if you want to tell me that it has a net positive effect, show me that effect.

              Now, as to Red Bull, et.al., sponsorship is different than participation. And particularly for products which are essentially fad brands. You have to make them look like they’re all over the place and important. When you look under the covers, they’re water with a bit of other common ingredients.

              Which brings us back to Nikon. Think GoPro. GoPro did a lot of sponsorship in places where people would actually use such cameras, and created an aura of “they’re everywhere action is.” Nikon pretty much didn’t do that with KeyMission.

              So tell me again exactly how Nikon’s making an f/1 normal lens that’s huge and won’t sell more than a handful of copies is going to actually bring them fame?

            • PhilK

              1) With your casual dismissal of those companies statements one could just casually dismiss any reason given for anything. You’ll have to make a better effort than that.

              2) I never suggested or implied that “the only way to develop hybrid/efficiency is by being in Formula 1 racing”. Let’s stop making up and attributing to me arguments I never made and then shooting down those imaginary arguments as a substitute for an actual debate. 😉

              3) Re: Red Bull, I made a minor mistake in that Nissan (Infiniti) is actually associated in a distant corporate way with Renault, so there is a (tenuous) corporate association between the two, it’s just that in general when a car manufacturer has its name on an F1 car, the implicit suggestion is that there is some kind of design/technology relationship between that company and the race car. These are not just sponsorship deals from a company that makes energy drinks.

              4) Whether or not you think that an F0.9 lens is going to be either A) useful to photographers, or B) likely to create useful corporate buzz, I think at the very least B will be true, and that is all a halo product is expected to be and do.

              I’d agree that in the “real world”, it probably doesn’t make much practical difference to 99.999% of potential customers whether such a lens exists because they will never own one, I just disagree on the brand impact.

              People, as I pointed out earlier in this thread, often have primarily superficial reasons why they choose to buy a particular product like an expensive camera or car, and this is just one of the things that often goes into such a decision.

              I also think that Nikon is not necessarily completely out of touch with the fact that they have to be careful of contention for production resources with lesser-important products, when production of more important products is critical. It seems to me that the recent announcement of the delay in production for 100-year anniversary products is likely an example where the COO etc decided to put such items on the back burner at a time when Nikon needs to focus on getting D850s out the door and so on.

            • Thom Hogan

              1. A statement that there is a benefit should be able to be backed with evidence of said benefit. If you don’t understand that, you must have trouble with your manager ;~).

              2. No, you didn’t make that statement. But it sure seemed implied by your original statements.

              3. Uh, Red Bull doesn’t do anything with cars other than paying money to have their name on them. That’s advertising.

              4. Well, it’s generated buzz, even though some of us that have looked at what was actually published think that this might not even be a lens for a camera ;~). But that’s the Internet for you. Predicting what is going to go buzzy or viral is not a simple game. And I’m here to tell you that if Nikon introduced a very expensive mirrorless system with US$3500 prime lenses like that that weighed two pounds, the buzz might actually be negative, not positive.

            • PhilK

              1A) You’re not my manager.

              1B) These are PR statements, companies rarely feel the need to provide mountains of documentation to support such statements, whether or not they are demonstrably true.

              1C) Anyone can say “nyah nyah I don’t believe you” to anything. I think in this case you are the one that needs to provide more foundation for your offhanded denial of the claim that F1 participants gain an advantage for their passenger car divisions from the work they do building an F1 team and developing/racing an F1 car. As I wrote earlier, some companies like Williams have complete business divisions devoted specifically to the commercialization of technologies developed for F1 racing.

              2) Your interpretations of my statements are oftentimes inexplicable, such as in this case.

              3) You have no idea what you are talking about.

              Anyone who has read the short (English) wikipedia article on Dietrich Mateschitz knows better than you about this. The founder of the company is heavily and personally involved in motorsport. Here, I’ll spoonfeed one of the many easily found articles about it to you:

              http://www.dw.com/en/mateschitzs-f1-legacy-on-show-and-at-risk-in-austria/a-18525090

              4) Nikon may never even produce such a product, so in that sense people are getting awfully worked-up for something that may never even see the light of day.

              That said, I personally like the fact that Nikon is working on such things, as I think they could use some PR buzz of this sort from time-to-time.

            • El Aura

              Sure, Nikon had DSLR video first … by a few weeks. But they didn’t have the video divisions of Canon, Sony or Panasonic. These must bring something quite useful to the table in forms of expertise and synergies.

        • Mike Gordon

          The real saying is WIN on Sunday…

          😉

        • El Aura

          You don’t think all those white lenses at sporting events have helped Canon stay the number one (at least in ILCs)?

          • Thom Hogan

            Not really. I’d say that the vests we have to wear on the sidelines of many college and pro games that say Canon on them probably have more influence ;~). Yes, even though I’m shooting Nikon I have to wear a vest that says Canon sometimes.

  • Where does the 52mm specification come from? There must be a mistake somewhere?

    At least for me the link didn’t really work.

    These are the posted details of the “Nikon 52mm f/0.9 full frame mirrorless lens”:

    f = 36.00 (focal length) <— NOT 52mm

    FNo = 1.25 (aperture) <— NOT f /0.9

    ω = 31.8 (half angle of view) <— semi wide

    Y = 21.64 (image height)

    TL = 159.500 (total length)

    BF = 22.298 (backfocus

    Anyway, looks more like two patents for a fast semi wide.

    • silmasan

      Check the link on the bottom that says “hi-lows-note”…

      • Ah, OK. There are the proper specifications:

        f = 51.60 (focal length)

        FNo = 0.91 (aperture)

        ω = 46.19 (half angle of view)

        Y = 21.63 (image height)

        TL = 256.8 (total length)

        BF = 18.225 (backfocus)

        BF (air) = 19.614 (backfocus)

    • it’s there, in the original Japanese website

    • oh, I see what you mean – I updated my post, sorry about that – I thought you were talking about the original Japanese source

  • Aldo

    Good stuff… now get started on the 24-70 f 2

    • Thom Hogan

      Start working out at the gym soon…

  • Antonio Sánchez

    I guess these kind of designs are not possible with the F-mount. So it would be a way of justifying the new mount “Hey! Look what we can do now!”, even if these lenses are not too practical / demanded.

    • Thom Hogan

      Don’t really think that sells cameras.

      What would sell cameras? Solve user problems.

      • Antonio Sánchez

        Not for the purpose of selling cameras, of course. But Nikon has to convince their users that the new mount is not something arbitrary just for selling you the same lens twice (or selling adapters). Flange distance is an obvious answer, but these designs highlight the advantages of a new mount, and are not unlike the tradition of Nikon of making lenses pushing the boundaries of what it is possible, even if they are a niche product.

        • Thom Hogan

          The only thing Nikon has to convince users of is that a new mirrorless system doesn’t obsolete all the lenses in their gear closet. That’s about the adapter.

          Promoting that you can hit f/1 isn’t a win. Others will be able to do that. Someone’s smoking something in Tokyo if they think this is the big marketing win.

          • Adam Brown

            Agreed…. BUT…..
            IF Nikon can make a great adapter that gives F-mount full functionality on mirrorless….
            Then what’s the point of going the adapter route at all? Why not just go native F-mount?
            Just because you can design a couple smaller wide angle lenses?
            Sony has stopped producing any new lenses for their A-mount…. all their energy has been on FE mount.
            Canon, Nikon…. they all can only produce 4-6 new lenses in a year.

            So practically speaking, can they support 2 mounts? What’s the point of designing a 70-300 for mirrorless, and another 70-300 for dSLR…. what’s the point of making 2 types of each lens, if the mirrorless can fully support F-mount?

            The “adapter talk” is making me think that the mirrorless won’t fully support F-mount… that an adapter can give some limited functionality but not as good as a native lens.

            • ZoetMB

              The point of using an adapter is that you don’t alienate all the Nikon users who have invested in lenses, but at the same time you can (presumably) make newer lenses for the new mount that are smaller and lighter. Win-win depending upon the quality and price of the adapter.

              Since Nikon has pretty much stopped making new Coolpix designs and the DL is dead and the Nikon 1 seems dead, all of the resources that were going into making those lens designs can be redeployed into making new lenses for the mirrorless.

              In the past, Nikon has produced more than 4-6 lenses in a single year. In 2001 and 2009, they did 9 lenses (based on U.S. street date, not announce date). In 2010 and 2015, they did 8 lenses. In 2016, they did 7 lenses.

            • Adam Brown

              But that’s the thing — except for wide angle lenses, the lenses are not smaller and lighter. 90% of the lenses would be the same size. So why go through a whole new mount just to get 2-3 smaller lenses?

            • Thom Hogan

              Well, I’ve covered that ground a lot in the past ;~).

              Thing is, when all is said and done, Nikon needs a consistent message (and which shows in design) about their cameras from the P900 through to the D5. I can see them doing more of the same: throwing random messages out because they’re focused only on certain technical aspects of the product they’re launching today.

              Can they support two mounts? Some would say that they can’t support one mount all that well ;~).

              Look, it’s put-up-or-go-home time for Nikon now. They can keep going down the poor QC, poor line management, random new initiatives, poor customer service route they’ve been going down and become first third place in the camera wars and eventually another Pentax-like story. Or they can suck it up, rally around a clear leader and vision, get it right, and embrace customers in every way possible and maybe take another swipe at Canon for dominance. I don’t think there’s an in between story for them.

            • Adam Brown

              All or none. Scary choice.
              I strongly suspect that Canon will be releasing a full frame mirrorless that is native EF.
              So if I’m right, this is Canon’s mirrorless future– a mirrorless camera that is fully compatible with the best glass library around.
              Sony — has a pretty full 25+ lens collection.
              I don’t see how Nikon can seriously compete with a new mount … initial release of 2-4 lenses..
              You and I agree it’s why they need full f-mount functionality. But if you truly have full f-mount functionality, I don’t understand why you’d really need an adapter. Just to make the camera a little slimmer?

            • Thom Hogan

              That would indeed screw Nikon’s pooch. They’d be caught between Canon actually being the new legacy king and Sony cranking out any and all exotic tech underpinnnings they can, with an open mount specification at that.

              There doesn’t appear to be clear insight at Nikon at the management level as to what the camera market is, what it could be, what it should be, and how they can dominate it. Coolpix is dying. Nikon 1 is dead. DL was stillborn. KeyMission is dying, and it barely had a breath to start with. Consumer DX is wilting.

              So Nikon’s answer is “Let’s be Leica”?

              It’s sad to watch this. First Precision really messed up and is now backing almost completely out of one of their two lines. Now Imaging seems to be following the same path. That HAS to be top management’s fault.

            • PhilK

              Re: Precision “messing up”:

              The state-of-the-art silicon patterning machines are one of the most sophisticated and precise pieces of equipment ever made. It is a ridiculously competitive segment and ridiculously research and capital-intensive to produce. Nikon lost out to an international consortium that pools the resources of various companies around the world to produce the product that Nikon “lost out” to.

              Regardless whether Nikon could have done better, I don’t consider their competitive loss there to be some kind of monumental failure on their part. They were literally one of only 2 serious players in the world in that market. That is rarefied company by any measure, Nikon can still be proud of that.

            • Thom Hogan

              You say that losing number one market share in a market you once owned is not a failure? That having to eventually close it completely down isn’t a failure.

              Your contention seems to be that Nikon was going to fail because it was a consortium of companies that they were going against, when they only had themselves.

              You might want to look at The Economist’s article about this from a few years ago. It was a Nikon failure from the git go. There’s to lose. They lost it. That’s a monumental failure to protect a business they dominated.

            • PhilK

              You’re looking at this in a narrow way. Whether or not Nikon lost #1 position or not does not change the fact that they held that #1 position for years, and remained one of an extremely small number of competitors in that vaunted industry for years after they were no longer #1.

              That’s like spending many fabulous decades of your life with a great romantic/life partner, and then after the relationship goes on rocks due to some new developments, running around revising history and claiming that all those years were a terrible waste and torturous drudgery. 😉

              My comment about “consortium” pertains to the fact that ASML is not a traditional company, they are essentially a design and support house that uses a consortium of technology and production partners to actually produce the final product, rather than a fully vertically-integrated producer like Nikon.

              On the one hand, that may be a kind of genius-move on ASML’s part to utilize the resources of companies all over the world to help them produce an extremely cost-intensive, super-expensive state-of-the-art product – but expecting Nikon to replicate such an arrangement is a bit of a pipe dream IMHO. Not least because the majority of potential partners are likely already working with ASML and most likely have various sorts of contractual obligations not to work with competitors, even if Nikon were inclined to seek their assistance.

              Not to mention the kind of scrutiny Nikon would be under for pursuing the obvious option of government support for such a gigantic effort, in post-WWII Japan which had its constitution changed by western powers specifically to undermine Japan’s traditional government support and promotion of business consortiums.

            • Thom Hogan

              Nonsense. You’re basically saying “if a consortium gears up to compete with you, you have to quit.”

              Nikon could have given up their paternal, proprietary ways and formed their own consortium. Indeed, that would have protected a key Japanese technology from an imposing Western technology, something Japan tends to encourage, even if it means they have to make strange bedfellows. Nikon didn’t do that; they didn’t want a partner, they wanted governmental protection only. They believed that they had all the technology they needed and patents would save them. That’s another management mistake in a chain of mistakes they made.

              Go read what the Economist said about Nikon’s failure to defend their turf. It was mostly about the mistakes that Nikon made with their customers. This put them in the position that the customers didn’t want Nikon to continue making their tools; they preferred “anyone else.” In B-School this would be a case study of what not to do.

            • PhilK

              I don’t know why you insist on making distorted interpretations of what I write and then arguing against these customized caricatures of yours. I never wrote, suggested or implied “if a consortium gears up to compete with you, you have to quit.”

              Please stop doing that.

              I never attempted to claim that Nikon never made any strategic mistakes either, wrt either the high-end semiconductor patterning devices or any other product. What I did suggest is that in a category of product which is so rarefied that only 2 companies in the world (maybe 3 at one time) are able to compete at the highest levels of it, it is not a trivial matter to compete with a global consortium which has already locked up a large proportion of global intellectual property and production resources relevant to that field of product. Even if Nikon wanted to take that route.

              And as you already know, I also have never disagreed with your complaints about Nikon’s customer relations in general – I think it stinks these days too.

            • PhilK

              There will never be “perfect” functionality from F-mount lens to mirrorless using an adaptor since the AF system is fundamentally different. (Nikon SLRS use Phase Detect AF via a partially-silvered main mirror passing light through a secondary sub-mirror to a dedicated PDAF module, compared to on-sensor AF of some sort in a MILC.)

              This is why Nikon submitted a patent for a “pellicle” F-mount adaptor for mirrorless: because that would be the only way to retain traditional SLR PDAF for a lens mounted to a mirrorless camera. (But that sort of approach has its own drawbacks)

              So the question is never “perfect” work-alike compatibility, but simply “good enough” compatibility. And this is also mitigated by the fact that there are some things that a MILC can do that were never present on most Nikon SLRs, such as focus-peaking/zebra stripes (which only came on the D850), and various other MILC tech that actually give capabilities to those old lenses that couldn’t be achieved on the cameras they were originally mounted on.

          • Antonio Sánchez

            But they have no way to do that. You can make the greatest adapter in the world, and it wont be as good as a proper F-Mount camera. But this way, you might entice some users with something they dont have in the F-Mount, plus the marketing.

            • Thom Hogan

              I have no real problems with Canon’s EF to M adapter, or even Sony’s A to FE ones.

              As for “entice some users,” again, how many users do you think they’ll entice with a nearly two-pound, US$3000 normal lens? Because that’s what this is going to be, best case. They’re certainly not going to entice me.

          • ZoetMB

            Nikon has always had trouble with marketing in recent years and still does. I’m on Nikon’s marketing list and years went by where I received nothing. Lately, there’s been more emails. Fine.

            But today, I get an email that says, “D850 is here! Get Yours today.” The body of the email says, “The wait is over. Available now.” Fantastic. Nikon’s been doing a lot of marketing for the D850 and this is one more piece. And they’re asking for the order. Great: Marketing 101.

            There are two buttons: “Buy D850 now” and “Find a Dealer”. I click on the “Buy” button and it takes me to Nikon’s site where I’m informed that “the product is backordered”. And of course the dealers don’t have any inventory. Mixed messages Nikon. And there should have been a better message like, “Pre-order it now, we’re making them as fast as we can.”

            • Thom Hogan

              Yes, exactly.

              Nikon’s marketing is as screwed up as I’ve ever seen a supposedly major brand manage. Totally self-contradicting messaging, missing messages, inconsistent messages, off-target messaging, and the big daddy of them all: no brand level message that plays across all products.

              And that’s just the message level of marketing. Marketing is a lot more than that, and it seems at every level Nikon is simply incompetent in some way.

              Really sad to watch. Almost guarantees that the company as a whole is underperforming. But, you know, The Economist recognized this about Nikon a decade or more ago, you’d think Nikon would have figured out the same by now.

            • Ric of The LBC

              This may be a small part of Nikon USA marketing strategy, but I’ve seen resorts that have photos taken by staff for purchase they’ve always been Nikons. This does put name recognition in the minds or normal people.

              Disneyland
              California Adventure
              Mammoth Mountain

            • Thom Hogan

              It is indeed part of Nikon’s marketing approach. Those are paid sponsorships.

              But think about this: it’s not working. Sales in the US of the kinds of cameras you’d expect to be used in those places have fallen for Nikon pretty dramatically in the past couple of years.

      • PhilK

        Sadly, as a guy who spent a number of years in photo retail, it often matters little to a typical customer how well a product solves ‘user problems’ besides:

        – Looks cool
        – Impresses the friends/family/boss/chix
        – Everyone else has one
        – Heavily advertised
        – “Expert” friend says they have to have one
        – Always wanted one of those
        – They got a good deal on it

  • vFunct

    This is going to be basically impossible to focus. I don’t know how they get fast and accurate focusing on this with on-chip phase-detect.

    • Eric Calabros

      Not fast, but with CDAF, accuracy has no problem.

      • MB

        With hybrid AF, PDAF then CDAF, it can be pretty fast as well 🙂

      • Eamon Hickey

        This is not perfectly true — there is still an error tolerance with CDAF. If you do careful tests with your CDAF cameras, you can see it.

    • Kriss_De_Valnor

      It will be possible in manual mode with electronic support (focus peaking). Nikon is not silly – they know their new mirrorless camera must have EVERYTHING to shake mirrorless market.

      • TurtleCat

        Focus peaking is a nice aid but it doesn’t guarantee accurate focus. Just ask anyone who uses focus peaking where the subject color blends with the focus highlight or the subject shape doesn’t lend itself to focus peaking.

        • EcoR1

          Yeah, ask me for example. I have a custom settings profile for manual lenses in my Sony a6000. In that profile I have programmed a button to change the focus peaking color if there are issues you described. No issues anymore 😉

          Is peaking perfect? Not always, but it’s a bloody good tool to have along with focus magnifier.

          • TurtleCat

            I’ve used focus peaking with colors before. It works OK, same with a magnifier. It’s a pain in the ass, really. And it doesn’t give you any real indication of how much front/back area is in focus. It’s a nice aid but no guarantee of accurate focus.

  • MB

    There are couple of different examples in 36mm patent, and this one indeed has too small image height (20.94) for full frame …
    But there is also example 2 that looks more like and full frame:
    F = 35.98
    FNO = 1.27
    ω = 31.8
    Y = 21.64
    TL = 163.947
    BF = 24.606
    BF(air conversion length)= 23.924

    Anyways patent are seldom exactly the same as the final product …

    • Correct, patents are not always the same as the final product but we also had many patents over the years that were exactly like the final product.

      • MB

        Also correct 🙂

  • Eric Calabros

    The ones with real FF image circle have bigger front elements.

    • MB

      There was a mistake in the post and there were two different 36mm data shown … now it is corrected and there is only one spec for 36mm with incorrect image height 🙂

  • Eric Calabros

    One of them (in 52mm patent) has almost 30cm TL value! Its beyond crazy. For comparison, new 70-200E length is just 20cm.

  • Vladimir

    This 52mm F/0.9 looks like a 30 years later revenge for Canons EF 50mm F/1.0 🙂

  • animalsbybarry

    These lenses (particularly the first one) have rear elements that are very close to the sensor
    That indicates that thes are most likely desighned for a short mount, not F mount

    • António

      Yes it points clearly to a new mount with a wider throat diameter than the one of the F mount and a shorter flange distance (that has more to do with the body design than just the lens mount).

    • Thom Hogan

      Yes, and front elements that are very far from the sensor ;~).

    • Yes, new mount according to the lens patents.

  • Wedding_Shooter

    Oftt…badd time to release these on the day of your nikon D850 release. I’ve found several places that have it in stock now just seriously considering waiting it out. It seems that the D850 may be one of the last DSLRs to me, it’s near end game it seems?

    • TurtleCat

      DSLRs outsell mirrorless 2 to 1 so, no, it won’t be one of the last or near the end of DSLRs.

      • EcoR1

        2012 DSLR-mirrorless ratio was 4:1 (cipa shipment data). 2015 ratio was 3:1. This years data shows 1.8:1. See a trend? See anything that will stop the trend? I don’t.

        DSLRs won’t suddenly disappear in the following years, but they will slowly wither into niche category.

        • TurtleCat

          Yes, but the person was saying that the D850 would be among the last DSLRs. That’s not the case. It will be a while before it’s even 1:1 and certainly will be a long while before it’s 1:3 where that would likely lead to a “last” big DSLR.

    • ZoetMB

      No, not yet. First of all, there will always be at least a few DSLR models. Secondly, while DSLRs are in decline (-5% YTD after full year declines of 13% in 2016, 7.9% in 2015, 23.7% in 2014 and 14.7% in 2013) and Mirrorless is experiencing big growth (+60% YTD), the sales ratio is still 1.8:1 YTD in favor of DSLRs. So I think DSLRs have some life left and these will definitely not be the last Nikon (or Canon) DSLRs. You can even still buy a new 35mm F6 (although it’s currently out-of-stock at B&H). The two approaches are certainly compatible with each other and I for one, assuming they can use the same lenses, would love to continue to use my DSLR for the important stuff and a smaller, lighter mirrorless as a walk-around and travel camera.

      And there would be some other benefits to having a second small, light body to my kit: I’d love to be able to set up the mirrorless with a wide angle lens to shoot the stage when I record video at music shows and then shoot the primary video with the DSLR which would give me something to cut to (the mirrorless footage) while editing. Right now I have to fake the cuts by cutting out phrases or verses of songs to make it look like a multi-camera shoot. I’m sure other photographers have their own examples of how a second small light body would help.

    • PhilK

      I don’t understand this comment – you mean RETAILERS that have the D850 in stock are considering what – not selling a camera which their customers are almost certainly clamoring for to the point that they cannot get enough inventory to satisfy even a fraction of them?

      Why would any retailer be that stupid?

  • Nikon used to make 50 mm f/1.1 lens for their rangefinder. Maybe we will see Nikon SD? Something in the line of X-Pro Fuji or even something in the shape of such cameras (retro-rangefinder looks)? This will allow NIkon to differentiate those offerings form DSLRs, at least initially, they canmalways do a X-T later; )

    • Nikkor300f4VR

      Goood! 😀
      Just SUATMM !

  • docnorth

    Ahaaaa…
    It seems Nikon comes this time better prepared, hopefully like they did with their latest high-end bodies (e.g. D810, D500, D850 etc). Also as I wrote a few months ago mirrorless can serve as an opportunity or an excuse for Nikon to introduce a new (larger) mount without massive reactions. But now because of the delay and IF we can judge from the patents, a new larger mirrorless mount seems very possible or almost certain.

    • Thom Hogan

      How are enormous lenses that would likely be higher priced than any prime they currently sell “better prepared”?

      I’ll repeat: three small, useful primes plus two or three solid zooms that cover 16-200mm. That’s “useful.”

      • PhilK

        And there is little in this patent revelation to preclude them offering such mainstream lenses as well.

      • docnorth

        You are correct about enormous lenses, especially for 36mm which I prefer as a “normal” prime. Better prepared stands for a propable larger mount hopefully fully (via adapter) compatible at least with higher end AF lenses. A new mount could be one cause of the delay, another cause is that they learned from their mistakes, like (IMO) they did with the bodies I mentioned.

  • Someone

    Strange because Nikon officially said they didn’t make the 58mm a 1.2 because it was unecessary these days! Hmm.

    • Kriss_De_Valnor

      Things changed since these days. Now Nikon needs to get a grip and show something spectacular in mirrorless market. Otherwise they may join Nokia…

      • Thom Hogan

        Again, particular numbers in specs is not what they need. What they need is to solve real user problems, period.

        • Kriss_De_Valnor

          They do need these numbers in specs. Simply because Nikon cannot afford another Nikon 1 disaster.

          • Thom Hogan

            The Nikon 1 had an 85mm f/1.2 and a 190-810mm f/5.6. Nope, numbers aren’t what Nikon needs.

    • António

      To a certain extent and considering the present sensor’s sensitivities there is a logic there but on the other end we’ve the continues talk about consumer’s “desire” for these kind of maximum apertures and with other manufacturers seeming ready to answer to it following “the trend is your friend” it isn’t a big surprise that Nikon feels the need to show that they also have ideas and are able to offer such products.

    • TurtleCat

      It is unnecessary given the minuscule difference between 1.4 and 1.2 with today’s sensors. But this would probably be more about bragging rights and customer wants than any real world benefit.

    • Nikkor300f4VR

      f1.2 is very close to the limitation for Nikon F-mount, ie. they can not make 85mm f1.2 without issues.
      But with the new – let’s call it – EX mount (pat. pending), this will change as well..

    • ZoetMB

      Nikon also said when they released the first digital cameras in 1999 that DX was enough and FX was unnecessary and they encouraged everyone to buy DX lenses. Then in 2007, they released the FX D3.

    • PhilK

      If there is one thing I have learned over the years it is that companies often make up bogus reasons why they aren’t producing some product that their competitors are producing and getting attention for. 😉

  • neonspark

    new mount, new possibilities. FU F mount! Hello future!

    • a14k

      FU mount? =)

  • Ben Cushwa

    Back in the 80’s, Canon’s new EOS mount/AF system and 50mm f/1.0 and were the shot across the bow that started pros flocking to Canon.

    Is Nikon planning on releasing a solid, full-frame mirrorless camera with an f/0.9 prime to go along with it as a (very belated) response? If they are…I gotta say that could be quite a powerhouse.

  • Abhinav

    Can’t wait .. Just can’t 😀

  • Thom Hogan

    I think the likelihood would be that these would be the “behind glass” types of demonstration units that Nikon seems to like, but never make. As in “see what the new mount would enable us to do?”

    Reality, though, is that the market for 50mm f/1 lenses, especially big heavy and expensive ones, is pretty darned small. Too small for Nikon to be relying upon it in any way.

    • Eamon Hickey

      Indeed. And actually, without careful analysis of the patents, I’m not even sure we can be confident these designs are intended for consumer cameras at all, if they ever end up being produced.

      Still, I love that 50mm block diagram — makes me think Mondrian reincarnated as a lens designer.

      • RC Jenkins

        hmmmm…42-degree half angle…

        If only there was some conversion factor for the full angle…

        • Eamon Hickey

          Huh? Not sure what this means.

          • RC Jenkins

            2.

            half-angle x 2 = angle

            • Eamon Hickey

              I guess you didn’t see that in the post you responded to I took 46 and multiplied it by 2 to get 92 and then mentioned that it would take a 21mm lens to provide a 92-degree angle of view on a full frame sensor?

    • RC Jenkins

      I’m still good with it! This would mean it’s not an F-mount mirrorless. I think the flexibility afforded by a crucial key to differentiating and producing stellar, next generation products.

  • br0xibear

    Forget jumping to conclusions based on these patents, some people seem to be taking long haul flights.
    Personally I think Nikon would be better off leaving their higher DSLR bodies to compete against Sony’s A7/A9 range, and introduce smaller mirrorless bodies with a DX sensor for a more mainstream market.
    The micro four thirds, Fuji X100 type of buyers, that’s what Nikon should be aiming for.
    If it’s too expensive people will go elsewhere, and there’s plenty of choice.

    • Eamon Hickey

      Nikon will eventually — probably not too distant — compete in both the DX and FX mirrorless markets. No question in my mind.

      It’s not one vs. the other with markets as large as those will be. They can make good money in both, so they will try to do so.

    • sandy

      I think a D3300/D5500 and a D610/750 for now. The high end will not be touched because half would love it half would hate it and Nikon cannot afford to have 2 concurrent bodies/models. I think the high end stuff will start with hybrid viewfinders.

    • David Gottlieb

      I think Nikon should compete against the Sony A7/A9 range. It wouldn’t be much of a competition for Nikon. There is a market for both a pro level DSLR as well as a Pro level full frame mirrorless. I would certainly purchase a quality Full Frame mirrorless and lenses. As well as keep my pro Nikon DSLR bodies.

    • tomskyphoto

      Competition in the APS-C and MFT realm looks much tougher to me. So far Sony is the only significant player in 135/FX and most of their cameras still feel like beta versions; A7RII owner here. Nikon could make a difference with a better built and more photography minded system. Maybe aiming at an equivalent spot between the D750 and D810/850 at a competitive price.

      Don’t see how they could really make a splash in DX or MFT. All the spots there seem to be already taken by pretty competent product lines: Fuji for the classic stills experience, Sony for video-centric features, MFT for ultimate compactness and weight saving, Canon for the traditionalists; even if the latter may sound like an oxymoron. Here Nikon’s system would definitely look much more like a belated me-too entry.

      And the big looming question that still remains is that about the general future of dedicated cameras or camera systems. I’m seeing less and less of them even when visiting popular and photogenic tourist locations; of a hundred people maybe five to eight carry a camera besides their phone and just one or two of these cameras are an ILC of any kind.

      Personally I still expect the photography market to contract further; even if the drop in sales seems to have paused now for a while. And the mid-range consumer market – i.e. budget DSLR or mirrorless APS-C/MFT – will very likely suffer the most as phones continue to evolve in their photo and video capabilities. So this vanishing consumer market segment might not be a well chosen entry point at all.

    • PhilK

      Yes, but that’s a much more competitive segment right now, with several companies that have already built substantial ecosystems around them that Nikon cannot initially compete with.

      Nikon may be trying to stake out a claim in a less-competitive, higher-end segment, at least to start.

      Which is a valid strategy.

      • br0xibear

        Canon are doing fine with their M3, M5 and M6 mirrorless bodies in that price range, they go from £420 to £1000 with lenses. Anything priced higher than that and you’re in the higher enthusiast/pro market…and that’s a small market.
        Maybe that’s what they want to do, just cater for enthusiasts and professionals with higher end gear. Which is fine, but Nikon will be a far, far smaller company than they’ve been…and that brings with it higher prices, more time between products and fewer of them.

        • PhilK

          Re: Canon’s M series, they have fewer challenges in making use of existing EF lenses (via adapter) than Nikon does with all their mechanical linkages and narrow throat diameter and so on.

          And what do you actually mean by “doing fine”? Are they selling a lot of them, in a good competitive marketshare position, and actually making money on them?

          • br0xibear
            • PhilK

              Thanks, I’ll take a closer look at that when I have a bit more time.

            • PhilK

              OK, looked at the articles, interesting info.

              The first obvious question is whether the Japan marketshare figures are extrapolatable to the rest of the world. Since looking at easy metrics like DPR’s “popular cameras” list, the Canon mirrorless models rarely seem to make the top 10.

  • geofflivingston

    Nice!

  • Daniel Wharton

    Lenses like this would make a new Nikon platform very interesting.

  • Dino Brusco

    Well now that’s interesting… such superfast aperture means they decided to rework the flange distance or probably the fact the mirror is missing allowed them to go further in lens design… Amazing nonetheless!

  • saywhatuwill

    So if this mirrorless camera ever sees the light of day then it’ll have speed demon lenses. Nice. Now we just need to wait and see if Nikon does something with those patents.

  • Eamon Hickey

    Just surfacing something that occurred to me buried down in the thread.

    Something here isn’t computing.

    If the 50mm lens is really supposed to be 27cm/10.5 inches long, this optic is not intended for a consumer camera.

    Also, if the half angle of view is 46 degrees, this is not a lens for a 35mm full frame sensor. A 92-degree diagonal angle of view on a full frame sensor is provided by a 21mm lens.

    And the 36mm lens is showing a narrower angle of view than the 50, according to what’s published above. Obviously, it should be the opposite, if they are designed for the same sensor format.

    So something is amiss here. Maybe the specs didn’t get properly transliterated or who knows. But for now, the information looks wacky. Remember that Nikon makes lenses for a hundred different fields. Consumer photography is only one of them.

    • RC Jenkins

      What’s a 46-degree half angle x 2 halves…?

      • Eamon Hickey

        Again, I guess you’re not reading my posts. In my post — go ahead and look, it’s right there — I note that 46×2 would mean a 92-degree angle of view. A 50mm lens does not have a 92 degree angle of view on a full frame sensor.

    • Rod P

      So this 50mm lens is longer than the 300mm f2.8?

  • sickheadache

    Please Nikon do not produce a 24mp Mirrorless camera. Please.

    • TurtleCat

      “OK, it’ll be 36mp and 20.9” — Nikon

      • sickheadache

        Nope..That old tired played out..Still dynamic Sony sensor. There will be two cameras..If u believe Nikon…Entry level..And a high end professional.

  • full frame mirrorless. wow. i cant wait. but this waiting game though.

  • Laud Farter

    If/when these superspeed lenses come out, it’ll be Nikon announcing that they are back to do business and serious about pro mirrorless. I still wonder though about the rest of the lineup and how long it will take for Nikon to flesh out a relatively complete system; it only took over 20 years to match Canon on pro primes–e.g. 24/35/50/85..

    BTW, I have both the Voigtlander VM 35/1.2 and 50/1.1 but rarely use them due to their large size vis a vis the Leica M body, and often rather carry the f/2 variant (Zeiss or Leica). The superspeed lenses are nice but mostly unnecessary for my needs, especially with today’s remarkable low light sensor performance. Still, quite nice that Nikon is throwing down the gauntlet.

    • António

      So you shoot Leica, admire Canon and doubt about how long Nikon will lag behind…thanks for coming to a Nikon forum to let us know… 🙂 🙂

      • Laud Farter

        Those 2 patented Nikkors will be big, which is my point of comparison–can you offer any comparison yourself? Because I state a fact about Canon I therefore “admire” Canon–that’s just simpleton-logic. Funny how fangirls get so their panties in a bunch when their choice of camera gets criticized even minimally. I’ve been shooting Nikon since the early 1980’s and shot professionally. I also shoot RF, m43, iPhone, MF and LF–so what? I try to use the best tool for what I want to accomplish,unlike you, apparently Defender of All Things Nikon.

        Still, when did Nikon introduce either a 24mm or 35mm f/1.4 AF, both pro staples? When did Canon? How long did it take the Sony, Fuji and Olympus/Panasonic to flesh out a relatively full set of primes and pro-level zooms? Several years; how long will Nikon take? You need lens choices for a camera SYSTEM, and kit zooms simply don’t cut it.

        My DSLR and film SLR system have been Nikon, but Nikon has not made it easy–on several occasions I’ve almost bought Canon because of their lens/body offerings were just better for my needs. The Nikon 1 lens selection was weak (and overpriced), which is why I use m43 for mirrorless for the present time being. Will Nikon replay their DSLR gamebook–roll out a million variations of the 18-XX kit zoom or update the exotic telephotos, all the while ignoring their core users’ other lens needs? Keep up this pattern and sooner or later it does catch up.

        • António

          The tricky thing about internet is that people tend to read fast and seeing behind the written words doesn’t work usually and text risks to be taken for what’s there only.

          Therefore what you call “simpleton-logic” may be normal and not very different from you taking me as a “Defender of All Things Nikon” and besides you took a careful “apparently” you couldn’t be more far from reality.

          But it’s ok, your new post makes it much clearer and not only I do agree with much of what you say as I wouldn’t answer you as I did if some more indications of these ideas were there from the beginning.

  • Daniel Högberg

    Oh please Nikon, do not make the camera bigger than the analog Nikon Fm2 series cameras! Anything bigger will NOT SELL! If we wanted big and heavy, we would buy the D850. Thanks.

    • ITN

      Well a 50/0.9 would sit well with a fairly large body, not a small one.

      Volume sales of dedicated cameras are over.

    • David Gottlieb

      How do you know it won’t sell. I’m not so sure what will sell and what won’t these days. Consumers are fickle.
      I know what I need. I use a D4 and a D800 – two different size cameras that do the job for me and take superb photos. And I will be purchasing the D850 with the battery pack, etc… What more do I need? Size means little to me. Image quality and build quality are much more important. I need to get the job done….
      Yes, I would love mirrorless, but only if it gave me the same quality photos (or better) with the ability to comfortably shoot!!! I’m sure we will get there…. But it will take time. Will SLRs go the way of the rotary phone. Who knows? But the DSLR market share has certainly gone down….

    • António

      Mirrorless started with the focus on seize and weight with short focal primes but as long as sensor grew the lenses shown that the laws of physics are still there – just look at FF Sony lenses for the a7s and a9 cameras and just think if the smaller body is really an advantage if you want to use 500 or 600mm teles.

  • CaMeRa QuEsT

    Yeah Nikon, show Canon who’s the boss!

    But seriously, these lenses are meant to do exactly what Canon’s .95 and 1.0 lenses did back in their days: convince the pros that they mean business. It’s the “halo” lens that’s only there for marketing bragging rights, though looking at how complicated their constructions are, they should also do double duty as Otus killers.

    • RC Jenkins

      Overall agree–but I think this shows a smaller flange distance (!!!!) rather than a “large mouth”, the combo of which would be brilliant!

      Now, my hopes are up.

  • Claude Mayonnaise

    This is shaping up to be a a great iphone 7 portrait mode competitor.

  • PhilK

    Yes, but that also depends on whether Nikon is willing to help 3rd-parties design for this mount by releasing design specifications and so on.

    Historically Nikon would never have done such a thing.

    But stranger things have happened. For example, I didn’t suspect that Nikon would use a MILC product-line as a clear inheritor of their flagship camera tech quite so soon. But this F0.9 lens patent suggests they may be planning to do just that..

  • jmb2560

    I want a 43.8×32.9mm sensor à la GFX to make it future-proof with a F adapter to use my current lenses.

    • The only Nikon F-mount lenses that cover that image circle are the tilt-shift lenses. If you used other F-mount lenses with this adapter, you would need to crop the images to avoid black borders

      • jmb2560

        Understood. The new family of lens would cover the new (extended) format while the adapter would crop to FX (or DX).

    • RC Jenkins

      The sensor doesn’t make the system future proof. The mount does.

      • jmb2560

        okay; let’s define “future-proof”: I would be fine with 43.8×32.9mm for… 10 to 15 years and would continue using FF (FX) until Nikon has a full range of large(r) format lenses available. The F mount converter would provide continuity and flexibility.

        • RC Jenkins

          That’s what’s known as “the present.” Many better sensors will come in the span of 10-15 years.

          Sensors change all the time–and “future proof” implies a system, not a single product.

          Sensors compete in the present. Mounts compete beyond the present.

          • jmb2560

            I was talking about sensor format as in “size”, not sensor models per se.
            My point is if Nikon is developing a new mount for a new generation of lenses, why not shifting to a new format (as in “size”), with an adapter cropping to FF. That would be what you call a “system” which would take advantage of legacy lenses.
            To be honest with you, it’s probably too much to ask to Nikon but hey… I’m still a dreamer.

  • Nikita

    thrilled, now where’s my DX only 10mm 2.8?
    what a drag…

  • azur

    jmb2560 asked Thom Hogan, why not switch to a larger format (44×33mm) à la GFX.

    And then Thom answered: “The problem is price. The GFX is about as affordable as we can expect small MF to be at the moment. And that market is not only pretty much saturated at the moment, but they’re all using the same Sony sensors.”

    My ignorant way of thinking is that if the camera price difference would more or less be the price difference of the sensor itself, then the market could potentially be much, much larger.
    So my question to Thom and others would be this:
    Is the price difference of a 24x36mm camera and a 44x33mm camera necessarily much more than the sensor price difference itself, e.g. with about the same resolution and only a larger pixel pitch for the Medium Format camera ?
    I mean the price difference between APS-C and 24x36mm isn’t all that big, and again the price difference between m4/3 and APS-C isn’t all that big. Etc.

    Of course we may have to also add larger lenses with larger lumps of glass, but that’s a different part of the system equation.
    And if MF optics are less demanding than FF optics and do not need to be quite as fast, then perhaps the price difference doesn’t need to be all that big here either ?
    Or what am I missing – please enlighten me.

    • Ric of The LBC

      can you lend me $20,000?

      • azur

        Why ?

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