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Nikon announces new 16-35 f4 VR and 24 f1.4 lenses


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#1 Drew

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Posted 08 February 2010 - 09:27 PM

Nikon has announced 2 new lenses today, the AF-S Nikkor 16-35 f/4 ED VR and the AF-S Nikkor 24mm f1.4 ED..
The 16-35mm f4, which is the first FX (full 35mm size sensor) wide angle lens to have built in VR (image stabilization). With a MFD of 0.29m (0.28m from 20-28mm), it'll be a nice addition to the underwater shooter's lens selection. It will ship later this month at a street price of US$1260.
The 24mm has a 0.25m MFD. It will ship in March and will be priced at US$2199.

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#2 Mariozi

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 03:04 AM

I think it was a nice release, the more options we have the better it is.
Shooting DX underwater and having the 14-24/2.8 for topside I don't feel particularly drawn by either one.
But I reckon they are good pieces of glass... and the 16-35 may be the best option for the FX shooter in between the 14-24, 17-35, and 18-35...
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#3 loftus

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 03:48 AM

Drew posted this on the front page.
Now we just have to wait for someone to get one and try it underwater. Not sure why it's not 2.8 unless the VR is somehow restrictive in the design, though the 4 stop addition of VR certainly makes up for the loss of one f-stop in maximum opening.
Takes filters and is a little longer than the 17-35
Will it perform better than my trusted 17-35, enough to warrant an upgrade?

Edited by loftus, 09 February 2010 - 05:38 AM.

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#4 Drew

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 07:29 AM

Drew also posted a thread too :P
I think for any moving shot, the shutter speed will need to stay high and VR/IS/OIS does nothing. Great for wrecks though... so long as there are no fish around :D

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#5 loftus

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 08:14 AM

Maybe a dumb thought, but any thoughts of the effects of VR on panning results or using slow shutter speed with Rear Curtain Synch for motion shots. Will one possibly maintain better overall sharpness of the moving fish by having less vertical blurring? Will I get a different effect or result using this technique with VR on versus VR off?
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#6 Rocha

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 09:36 AM

I think we had the discussion of the usefulness of VR underwater before. The overall conclusion (if I am not mistaken) was that it wasn't very useful since the water itself damps most of the vibration that the VR is supposed to help with...

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#7 divegypsy

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 06:45 PM

Several thoughts on the new 16-35mm lens.

As the 16-35mm is an f4 lens, it will not provide as bright an image in the viewfinder as does the 17-35mm f2.8. F4 also means more possible focusing error because the wide-open image, which you use for both manual and auto-focusing, will exhibit more depth-of-field.

Comparing the tech specs on the two lenses, the new lens focuses down to 1:4 vs 1:4.6 on the older lens. About 15% more magnification with the new lens. This may be useful in some instances.

The 16-35mm may NOT be wider than the 17-35mm underwater. At infinity it is that 1mm and 3 degrees wider. Both lenses are internal focus, which means that the effective angle of coverage gets a little bit wider as you focus closer. This fact has led to many complaints with regard to the close focus magnification of the newest 70-200mm f2.8 lens vs its predecessor. Whether both lenses, 16-35mm and 17-35mm, gain the same amount of coverage can be determined only by trying both lenses behind a specific dome port and focusing on that port's virtual image. I might suspect that the new lens does NOT gain as much angle of coverage as does the new lens because although both have a virtually equal (.28m vs .29m) minimum focus at 35mm, the new lens provides greater magnification. This difference, however, may be due to the fact that the 16-35 is physically 19mm longer and focusing distances are measured from the film plane or sensor plane to the subject, not from the front of the lens to the subject. This means that the distance between the 16-35mm's front element and the subject (what is sometimes called the working distance) would be less than with the 17-35mm.

Being physically longer, the 16-35mm lens will also probably perform better with an extension tube 15-20mm longer between the housing body and a particular dome port than the extension tube used with the 17-35mm and the same dome port. Having to buy a new and longer extension tube can add several hundred dollars to the cost of replacing the 17-35mm with the 16-35mm.

Re Rocha's comment concerning VR. VR may not be a "very useful" feature if you are shooting still images underwater. But some of the newest DSLR's also shoot video and VR might be quite useful when shooting video.

Fred

#8 jcclink

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 07:10 PM

Isn't the main purpose of VR to minimize or negate the results of hand held camera shake? This topside motion is a much higher relative frequency than camera movement underwater (ie a frequency based system). This is why I believe that VR isn't beneficial underwater. Video is just a rapid series of still shots, so I don't believe VR will make a difference here either. On the other hand, VR is great if using a long lens topside - its primary function.
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#9 davephdv

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 08:48 PM

If I'm reading the specs right it has a max magnification ratio of 1:4?
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#10 Drew

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 11:10 AM

I'd like to see how the 24mm does against the EF L equivalent, which till now has been the king of fast 24 for DSLR. At $500 more than the Canon, it's pretty steep. The test has to be done by the D3X only as mp rise, testing it on a 12mp is great for now but the lens may not do as well at 32mp.

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#11 divegypsy

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 05:17 AM

If you really want to test the two 24mm f1.4 lenses, use a lens adapter that allows you to mount the Nikon lens on a Canon body. Use a Canon 21 Mp camera, 5D MkII or 1D Mk II. The resolution difference between these and the Nikon D3x is minimal. The Nikon lens would have to be manually focused and stopped down manually to shooting aperture. By doing this, testing both lenses on a Canon body, you eliminate any variables caused by different camera bodies and are thereby genuinely testing the difference between the lenses.

Speculating about any differences that might show up with a 32 Mp body is only speculation.

With regards to davephdv - the nikon tecspec page on the 16-35 does say 1:4 magnificaton at minimum focus distance and 35mm.

to jcclink who suggests that VR is only useful for a long topside lens. - If VR (or image stabilization) is only useful for a long topside lens, why does virtually every video camera maker put VR in their video camera? Not just for long telephoto shots. When you shoot with the 105 VR macro, you can see that the VR holds the image steadier and helps you keep the precise framing that you want. With video, this dampening of slower motion to keep frame after frame the same is even more useful.

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#12 jeremypayne

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 06:37 AM

stopped down manually


Therein lies the problem .... neither of the two new lenses has an aperture ring ...

Is there a way to manually stop down a "G" lens other than by mounting on a Nikon body?
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#13 Drew

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 12:19 PM

Fred
That's a round about way of doing things. Obviously if the AF-S 24mm produces results equal or better than the Canon equivalent ON a Nikon, then it's a good thing. This isn't a Canon vs Nikon issue but a results issue. Hopefully Nikon will release new f1.4 lenses for FX. Making sure the lens can perform at high mp is a bit of future proofing. For Nikon it's every 5 years for double resolution but I doubt many people would like to buy a new $2200 lens every 5 years because it couldn't handle the high mp count.
VR/IS/OIS can help but also can hurt. In surge or current, the OIS can be tricked into thinking it is moving when it's not suppose to be, thus you get a jumpy picture. UW IS is not always a good alternative to good diving skills and steady arms.

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#14 Paul Kay

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 12:24 PM

Therein lies the problem .... neither of the two new lenses has an aperture ring ...

Is there a way to manually stop down a "G" lens other than by mounting on a Nikon body?


http://www.16-9.net/nikon_g/
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#15 divegypsy

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 05:58 PM

Drew,

Clearly you did not read my comments carefully before you went into your attack mode, just as you did when you attacked my comments on Hartenberger strobes and the Heinrichs Weikamp i-TTL converter.

You wrote, "Obviously if the AF-S 24mm produces results equal or better than the Canon equivalent ON a Nikon, then it's a good thing." I did not suggest putting the Canon lens on a Nikon because that doesn't work. BUT you can mount a Nikon lens on a Canon camera, which is what I suggested doing. And, in fact, Canon themselves made the first mount adapters to do this. I suggested doing this ONLY because very few of us own or have access to the instruments necessary to do independent resolution testing and/or MTF testing ourselves. IF you could test both lenses on the very same camera body, then camera and sensor differences would be eliminated as a variable. And any differences you saw in the final image would be due to differences in the lenses. That is the basis of the scientific method - eliminate other variables so that your test is valid for what you want to test. It is not, as you claim, "a round about way of doing things"

I said that almost every video camera incorporates image stabilization. (And they make this stabilization available over the full range of the camera's fixed zoom lens (or lenses if the camera has interchangeable lenses) because the stabilization is built into the video camera body, not in individual lenses. Your reply, "VR/IS/OIS can help but also can hurt. In surge or current, the OIS can be tricked into thinking it is moving when it's not suppose to be, thus you get a jumpy picture. UW IS is not always a good alternative to good diving skills and steady arms." Yes, you can almost always find some situation in which a good tool or technique doesn't work. But get back to the basic statement. DO YOUR VIDEO CAMERAS HAVE IMAGE STABILIZATION? DO YOU USE IT FREQUENTLY UNDERWATER and/or topside when your camera is handheld? If the answer is "yes", then you should have stated so before railing on about the exceptions.

YOU promote yourself on WetPixel as a "video expert". Have you shot for BBC wildlife productions? Have the videos you've produced won any significant awards - like winning the professional division at the Antibes UW festival? Or San Diego Film festival? On what basis do you claim your "video expertise" to advise others? On what ACTUAL result(s)? Or is your claim to video expertise based only on the fact that you have more than six thousand posts on WetPixel? As the lady said years ago in the Wendy's Hamburger ads, "Where's the BEEF?" I rarely promote myself as anything special. I simply post comments that I think will help others based on my experience with that particular equipment. And based on the fact that I have many years of experience in underwater photography and have the photo credits and awards to verify the knowledge and experience to comment.

When I have commented on particular pieces of gear, such as the Heinrich-Weikamp i-TTL converter, it is usually because I have experience with THAT piece of gear. Usually having bought it and shot with it. And therefore feel qualified to comment on it. That is why most of my comments have been about Nikon products, not Canon or Sony. When you said that your Heinrichs-Weikamp converter had died, I offered to buy the your no-longer-working converter to use it for spare parts for my own - IF it had not been flooded. I never got a response from you on that. Why not? If you didn't like HW converter to start with and it no longer worked, why keep it? Or did you ever really own one? Yet you felt compelled to post that HW had stopped selling their external converter - totally disregarding and ignoring the fact that Sea & Sea had adopted the HW technology for the Sea & Sea i-TTL converter. As has Subtronic, and several other strobe manufacturers. Ignoring the fact that the HW technology works, and works well.

Is that the even-handed, fair kind of information that people come to WetPixel for? Or is this simply your way of promoting particular products, by knocking others?

Are you or others at WetPixel receiving products or discounts on underwater photo gear without being honest enough to state that up front (as Michael Reichman does on Luminous-Landscape) when you promote those same products?

Fred

#16 Drew

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 07:58 PM

We all appreciate experience & knowledge from all sources, including seasoned professionals like yourself, Fred. I think we also have to accept that there are people who have different experiences and insights contrary to our own. It's about sharing the knowledge out there so people can decide for themselves what is relevant for themselves based on that information.

What I was saying about the mounting the Nikon lens on the Canon being redundant is the fact that you don't have access to AF, on camera aperture and other things modern lenses afford the buyer. If the results from the lens is good enough, then it's easy to make the choice for people who are considering buying into a platform based on lens availability. Testing both lenses on one body will show the glass quality, but it's useless since the lens is crippled, especially for uw which relies on electronics. The point is to see if the AF-S 24mm can produce results which are as good or better than the Canon equivalent, so people can make informed decisions on platform choices based on lenses, which is an important variable in choosing a platform based on a shooter's needs. I personally considered getting a Nikon adapter to use the 14-24 but thought it to be a PITA to use.

As for OIS/VR, I haven't used on my shooting since the first time I discovered the "jumping picture" issue. I've tested over the years continuously and while the latest OIS from camcorders have improved the motion sensors to accomodate WA converters etc, it still can be fooled. Now the systems on DSLR lenses are much more rudimentary compared to say the ENG systems of Canon. I'm sure if you've looked through the VF, you'll see the VR/IS shifting the image significantly when it kicks in. In stills, that's fine but in video, losing a few frames in a clip is not something you want. Plus the fact you can't shut it off once underwater. The motion sensors are designed for air medium. In water, there are motions from the diver and the system can be fooled into compensating for movement that is intentional. The VR/IS systems on DSLR lenses, while working in the same basic way, are less sophisticated than the OIS systems on video cameras, and also designed to catch one frame, not 24/25/29.97/50/60 fps

Fred, I'm sorry you feel I'm attacking you and that you take it personally. Your other aspersions I won't comment on since it's of a personal tone and I will not partake in such an exchange on groundless assertions.

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#17 echeng

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Posted 12 February 2010 - 09:36 PM

Re Rocha's comment concerning VR. VR may not be a "very useful" feature if you are shooting still images underwater. But some of the newest DSLR's also shoot video and VR might be quite useful when shooting video.

The current implementation of IS on Canon lenses causes a lot of problems when shooting video on a Canon 5D Mark II (video jumps around, as Drew states).

I simply post comments that I think will help others based on my experience with that particular equipment. And based on the fact that I have many years of experience in underwater photography and have the photo credits and awards to verify the knowledge and experience to comment.

...

Is that the even-handed, fair kind of information that people come to WetPixel for? Or is this simply your way of promoting particular products, by knocking others?

Are you or others at WetPixel receiving products or discounts on underwater photo gear without being honest enough to state that up front (as Michael Reichman does on Luminous-Landscape) when you promote those same products?

Fred, what photo credits and awards give you the right to publicly speculate so wildly about Wetpixel and its staff?

If you continue to drag conversation down to this level, I have no problems suspending you. This is not a public forum, and we have every right to remove negative influences.
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#18 Paul Kay

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 01:55 AM

To move on, and hopefully bring the discussion back to the courteous standard which marks wetpixel out as one of the best web forums that I've come across, its interesting that after Canon have been the only player in the fast wide market for some considerable time (even from the old breechblock mount days) and certainly since Nikon dropped their highly prized 28/1.4, both Leica (21/1.4 & 24/1.4) and Nikon (24/1.4) have now also entered this arena. The Leica lenses won't be of interest to wetpixellers (yet? - depends what's round the corner) but the Nikon lens gives Nikon users the opportunity to get a lens which will provide a very bright viewfinder image underwater, something that I value in poor conditions with my 24/1.4 Canon. Even my old 24/1.4 MkI L lens produces high quality images, I'm sure that the MkII and Nikon versions will be substantially better and operate closer to the requirements of the latest high density sensors.

Without wanting to decry testing, its far more complicated than simply providing side by side data as has been pointed out. IF you really need the 'ultimate' in one specific focal length and aperture lens, then a side by side test MAY be relevant. Otherwise there are many more factors which come into play when determining which system to go for and I for one would happily use either Canon or Nikon these days (provided I can use my Leica M for some topsides stuff :drink: ). What is good to see is choice, which means that other aspects of each manufacturer's systems can be checked out to see which is more suitable.
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#19 divegypsy

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 09:29 AM

Eric, Drew, et al,

I asked the question, "Are you or others at WetPixel receiving products or discounts on underwater photo gear without being honest enough to state that up front (as Michael Reichman does on Luminous-Landscape) when you promote those same products?"

The response I got from WetPixel is this, "Fred, what photo credits and awards give you the right to publicly speculate so wildly about Wetpixel and its staff?
If you continue to drag conversation down to this level, I have no problems suspending you. This is not a public forum, and we have every right to remove negative influences.

It is not WILD SPECULATION, but an honest and fair question. It is now common practice and even perhaps a legal requirement, that bloggers, must reveal if they are receiving payment or other "consideration" from the producers of products that they promote and praise. WetPixel and in particular its Moderators and Controllers should also adhere to this standard of practice.

ERIC heaped praises on a LowePro equipment case shortly after he picked up one at BackScatter Photographic. BackScatter has a policy that they will give a professional discount to pros who promote BackScatter favorably. Eric also promoted an on aluminum color printing process when he had an exhibit of his work at a Taiwanese Center in California. Should we believe that Eric did NOT accept the Pro discount for BackScatter? And received no discount or consideration what-so-ever from the the aluminum print company?

So Eric. You, nor Drew, never directly answered my question. You only threatened to suspend me. That is a very clear answer to my question.

You don't have to suspend me. I will never post on WetPixel again.

Fred

#20 james

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 09:47 AM

Whoa there - this is a thread about the new Nikon 16-35 and 24mm lenses right? How did we get off on such a HUGE tangent as to be talking about who has what qualifications, and whether Wetpixel staff get free products???? On "the internets" this is called "flaming" and something that is strongly discouraged on Wetixel. The idea is that good natured rational people can have a discussion about the merits of different equipment without making the discussion a personal attack. Obviously asking someone how many awards they have won or where they went to college, or how many photos they have published is a personal attack and has NOTHING to do with the new Nikon lenses :-). On the internet it's pretty easy to tell when someone knows what they are talking about or not - and our users are VERY savy about that.

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