Launch of the Month Club Continues

(news and commentary)

Nikon continues its announcement-of-the-month tactic, this month with a few things that'll perk up some of the Nikon faithful. Maybe.

First up, we've got the long overdue 80-400mm refresh. The last lens that Nikon announced that wasn't AF-S was over 10 years ago, about two years after the 80-400mm originally shipped. Despite selling about 200,000 of these lenses--most in the AF-S era--Nikon seemed to drag its feet on ever creating the AF-S update. I count 25 lenses that got AF-S updates plus quite a few new lenses (14-24mm, 16-35mm, 24-120mm, 70-200mm f/4, and so on) that appeared before the 80-400mm finally got a built-in lens motor. 

Rip Van Optical Winkle has finally awoke, though, and today Nikon announced the 80-400mm replacement. What's new in terms of specifications? The new VR system, AF-S, Nano coating, weather sealing basically. It's still 80-400mm and it's still f/4.5-5.6, though the optical formula is different and the published MTFs look much better. It's still a 77mm filter ring lens, with minimum focus of 5'9" (1.75m). With the D4, D600, D800, and upcoming D7100 cameras, you can use a TC-14E converter and still get focus. Weighing in at 3.3 pounds (1480g) and 8" in overall length collapsed, it's bigger and heavier than the original by a bit. Price is US$2700 and availability will happen later this month. 

Along with the Awakening Zoom, we get two new Coolpix models, both interesting in some way. These are covered on gearophile.com now. 


text and images © 2017 Thom Hogan
portions Copyright 1999-2016 Thom Hogan-- All Rights Reserved
Follow us on Twitter: @bythom, hashtags #bythom, #dslrbodies