May 18, 2010
The Nikon 10.5mm 2.8 is a full-frame Fisheye, meaning it will provide you with frame filling images with a 180° diagonally picture angle on a DX sized Nikon Dslr. It was made exclusively for the Nikon DX format cameras, but with the introduction of the Nikon FX sized Dslr's this lens can also be used here in either DX crop mode or in FX mode. In FX mode you will not be able to fill the frame, but you are rewarded with almost a 200° field of view on close focus. A modification needs to be done to the lens to take full advantage of this on the FX cameras(basically you need to saw off the lens hood). If you are serious about snow/skate photography a fisheye lens is a must to have.
|| 10 elements in 7 groups (1 ED element)
|Minimum focus distance:
||None, Gelatin filter for lens mount provided
||Fixed type (built-in)
||Front lens cover
Rear lens cap LF-1
CL-0715 soft case
63 × 62.5mm
2.5" x 2.5"
|| 7 rounded blades
- Close focus, with 14cm as the closest focusing distance you can make some really dramatic images.
- Price, compared to the full frame 16mm this 10.5mm has a way nicer price tag on it.
- Size & weight.
- Full frame fisheye for Nikon's DX cameras.
- Contrast, is pretty good wide open.
- DOF markings, Depth Of Field markings are provided.
- No infrared compensation marking.
- Lens cap, the plastic lens cap provided with the lens is not good enough as it falls off easily.
- CA is present in pictures taken in high contrast situation. used in the worst of lighting conditions the lens can show some CA from f/2.8 to f/16. This can largely be corrected in post processing. Using Capture NX2 CA was removed without too much trouble.
- Gelatine filter system, for some this might be a plus, but I would rather have the screw-in rear filters that the 16mm has.
- Autofocus compatibility. As this lens is of the older screw type AF(see picture below), it will only autofocus with cameras with a built in AF motor.
Nikon 10.5mm lens mount with AF coupling and gelatin filter holder.
The Nikon 10.5mm Fisheye can in most respects be compared to it's older brother the Nikon 16mm f/2.8 Fisheye. When comparing the two lenses side by side the performance is almost identical. I feel that the 16mm has an edge wide open in regards to sharpness, but other than that they are very similar.
Diffraction(softening) starts at f/11 on the DX format, you can without any problems push it to f/16 without much or any sharpening. At f/22 the image gets quite soft, so sharpening in post is a must to get the most out of the image.
There is some CA present on high contrast, most of the time this was taken care of by the camera (I used the Nikon D3 for the test) when it was too much for the camera to handle it was fixable by using Nikon Capture NX2.
Vignetting / light fall off, as with most wide angle lenses there is visible vignetting. You need to stop down to f/11 to get rid of all the vignetting that this lens produces. For some photographers vignetting is a plus when it comes to lenses, for some it's a drawback. So this really depends on taste.
Flare, the Nikon 10.5mm is quite resistant to flare if you keep the front element perfectly clean all the time. Only in a few sample images shot directly into the sun, could small traces of flare be seen.
If you are a Nikon DX shooter and you are looking for a super wide angle or a Fisheye, this is the lens to get.
Nikon AF DX Fisheye-Nikkor 10.5mm f/2.8G ED
Purchasing items through these links helps me adding more content to this website. The links takes you to B&H's website, which is my recommended store to get equipment from. I've used B&H personally since 2005, and I get all my equipment from them these days(including the lenses used for these reviews). Thanks for your support, Fredrik.
Bower 8mm f/3.5 FISHEYE Price: $349.00 USD
Vivitar 7mm f/3.5 Series 1 Fisheye Price: $359.95 USD
Tokina Fisheye 10-17mm f/3.5-4.5 AT-X 107 DX. From: $579.95 USD
Sigma 10mm f/2.8 EX DC HSM Fisheye Price: $649.00 USD
Sigma Circular Fisheye 4.5mm f/2.8 EX DC HSM Price: $999.00 USD
*Prices and rebates are subject to change. Listed price is from May 18, 2010
Images have been imported to photoshop CS4 through Capture NX 2 thus leaving the original image settings as shot, I. E white balance, sharpening, etc .etc. Full resolution sample images are in RGB color mode. Check out my copyright page for information about usage of these images.