The Nikon AF Nikkor 35mm f/2D is a compact "wide" angle lens. The auto focus version has been in Nikon's lens line-up since 1989, it replaced the manual focus version that has been in Nikon's lineup since 1975. I've been wanting this lens for a long time, but as I've been using zooms that have covered this focal length it never really ended up in my kit. I've been going back and forth between primes and zooms several times and I've used the manual focus version of this lens for quite some time. I finally thought it was time I put this the AF Nikkor 35mm f/2 to the test. The lens is quite small and lightweight and should be an interesting lens for both DX shooters as well as FX shooters.
||6 elements in 5 groups
|Minimum focus distance:
||0.25 m / 0.85 ft
||Front lens cap
Rear lens cap LF-1
64.5mm x 43.5mm / 2.5 x 1.7in
||205g / 0.45 lb
- Sharp. When focused correctly center is close to perfect wide open. Less so in the corners until you hit at least f/4
- IR performance, No hot/spot at any aperture.
- DOF/IR markings. Lens is provided with both Depth Of Field and Infrared focusing marks.
- Size. Quite a light weight lens, which is to be expected for a prime like this.
- Soft corners. Corners are quite soft un till you hit f/4 on the FX format.
- Vignetting, quite bad wide open, and to f/2.8 @ f/4 it's nothing to worry about.
- CA. there is a bit of Chromatic Aberrations when the lens is used wide open in high contrast situations. More then what the D3 can handle automatically, so if you use an older camera then the D3/D300 expect more CA then what is in the sample pictures. The manual focus version is less troubled with CA then the newer AF versions.
- Like most of Nikon's primes the outer casing of the lens is made with plastic. I do prefer the later version of plastics like this lens over the earlier version of plastic that was used by Nikon.
The Nikon AF Nikkor 35mm f/2D has a bit more vignetting/Light fall-off then what I like, the problems disappears completely @ f/4 and beyond. For photojournalism this would not really be a problem, as what you are looking for is isolation of subject. The vignetting is not necessary a problem, it kind of depends of what you like. The vignetting can also be seen using DX sized cameras, but as DX sized Dslr's uses the center of the lens this does of course not affect the performance as much as it does on a full frame camera. The lens shows a bit of CA when used wide open in high contrast situations, by f/4 it's gone. This can be fixed in PP, but I like to spend as little time as possible doing post-processing. Infrared performance on a DX sized camera is really sweet. Like the manual focus version, close focus is amazing on the 35mm AF Nikkor. Peak performance of the lens is f/5.6 to f/11 if you require no vignetting, generally speaking center performance is great even on f/2. Used on a DX sized camera you get a pretty good "Normal" lens.
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Price from: $319.95 USD*
Zeiss MF 35mm f/2 ZF Distagon T* Price: $826.00 USD
Nikon MF Nikkor 35mm f/1.4 AI-S Price From: $999.95 USD
Nikon AF Zoom Nikkor 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5D ED-IF From: $569.95 USD
Nikon AF-S Zoom Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8D ED-IF From: $1,629.00 USD
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G DX Price From: $194.95 USD
Sigma AF 30mm f/1.4 EX DC HSM Price: $439.00 USD
*Prices and rebates are subject to change. Listed price is from March 7, 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. As always no post processing have been applied to the images. Full resolution sample images are in RGB color mode. Check out my copyright page for information about usage of these images.