Weekly Nikon news flash #475

→ Zeiss has new lens discounts in the US (direct link to all discounted Zeiss F-mount lenses) and in the UK (only two Zeiss F-mount lenses discounted).

→ Rare Nikon I rangefinder camera from 1948 for sale on eBay for $27,445.

→ The latest new products also relevant for Nikon shooters:

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New Nikon summer cashback in the UK (and the rest of Europe)

After the last price increase, Nikon UK is now running a new summer cashback program (see details at WEXJessops, and Park Cameras). The cashback program is also available in several other European countries (Germany for example) - check your local Nikon website for more details.

The current Nikon US rebates can be found here.

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New reports indicate that the Nikon D850 sensor (IMX309AQJ) is made by Sony

ChipMod took a Nikon D850 camera apart and came to the conclusion that the sensor inside is made by Sony (Google translation):

  • In an email, ChipMod informed me that they analyzed the sensor and the bonding pattern together with other characteristics are typical for the way Sony manufactures sensors.
  • They also shared with me that Nikon has started to use a new sensor IC package - AQJ (metal frame with mounting holes on the sensor).
  • ChipMod also noted that the D850 sensor is different from the sensors found in the Sony a7 II (IMX251AQL) and a7 III cameras in both circuit and packaging.

We had another Nikon D850 sensor teardown last year, but we could not see the actual numbers on the back of the sensor since they were covered by a metal frame. This time ChipMod provided a picture of the back of the sensor where we can clearly see IMX309AQJ and 1183456:

A quick Google search shows us that IMX309AQJ is indeed a Sony made sensor:

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Nikon announces the development of a new AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR lens

Nikon officially announced the development of the previously rumored AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR lens (see patent). The new lens will be compact and lightweight like the latest 300mm f/4 thanks to the use of Phase Fresnel (PF) lens element (the current 500mm f/4 lens weights 6.81lb/3.09kg and costs $10,296.95) We don't have a price or a picture, just a press release:

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The firmware update for the cross-type sensors at the outer areas of the frame is still not released (for Nikon D5, D850 and D500)

Time seems to stand still at Nikon. When the Nikkor 180-400mm f/4E TC 1.4 FL ED VR lens was announced, Nikon promised (in the press release) to release a firmware update for the D5, D850 and D500 that will make the outer row of AF points activated as cross-type sensors to significantly enhance the AF coverage throughout the frame. Nikon USA says on their website that the new firmware is expected in March 2018 (click for a larger view):

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ASML and Zeiss win the patent lawsuit filed by Nikon

Last year Nikon sued ASML and Carl Zeiss over patented semiconductor lithography technology. The court in The Hague dealing with intellectual property has ruled that ASML and Zeiss have not violated any Nikon patents:

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