Two Nikon Z Lens Announcements: 800mm f/6.3 Development and 28-75mm f/2.8

Tips & Techniques

Today, Nikon announced the development of the roadmap’s 800mm f/6.3 prime as well as an unexpected 28-75mm f/2.8 Z-series zoom lens. Of the two, the 28-75mm f/2.8 is the big surprise and not exactly what it appears to be at first glance. Here’s what we know so far.

800mm f/6.3 S Development

Nikon has only had an 800mm lens on their roadmap for a couple of months, and we’re already getting new details about it. According to Nikon, the new supertelephoto prime will be an f/6.3 lens (a third of a stop slower than the F-mount 800mm f/5.6) and include a phase-fresnel lens for a lighter-weight design.

Unfortunately, Nikon has not released any other details about the lens’s specifications, so exactly how lightweight remains to be seen. The following photo of the lens does show the expected Function and Memory Set buttons, along with a latch near the mount that is most likely a drop-in filter slot.

Nikon Z 800mm f6.3 S Lens

I’m very excited to test this lens and learn more details about it. It’s going to be the flagship lens of the Z system for supertelephoto users and probably have almost all of Nikon’s bells and whistles. As with the F-mount 800mm f/5.6 FL, it is certain to be an expensive lens and very heavy (although hopefully less than the F-mount lens thanks to the PF element). And of course, the F-mount version is all but flawless optically, so we expect great things of the Z 800mm f/6.3 S.

You can be notified when the lens is available via this link to B&H.

28-75mm f/2.8 Announcement

The Nikon Z 28-75mm f/2.8 was also announced tonight, and it’s an unusual lens in a few ways. First, since Nikon already has a nearly flawless Z-series 24-70mm f/2.8 S – not to mention a host of other midrange zooms for sale or recently announced – it may seem to be a redundant new lens. Looking more closely, you may change your mind because of Nikon’s lower price for the new lens ($1200) and light weight (565 g / 1.25 pounds).

Then, looking very closely, you’ll notice that Nikon’s official lens diagram for the 28-75mm f/2.8…

Nikon Z 28-75 f2.8 lens diagram

Is suspiciously (AKA identically) like the lens diagram for the first version of the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8, a Sony E-mount lens:

Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 G1 Lens Diagram

It’s not a Tamron lens that I’ve used before, so I’m hesitant to pass judgment on the quality of the upcoming Nikon lens. But while it’s widely considered an acceptable third-party lens by Sony users, it is hardly a renowned design, and not as good as the newer G2 version. So, I think it probably will be no surprise why the “new” Nikon design is a non-S-series lens. (I also guarantee that this lens will lead to some amusing arguments between Sony and Nikon fanboys.)

So, I wouldn’t say I’m super excited about this lens on its own, although I admit that it could be useful for photographers who want a less expensive, lighter f/2.8 zoom. Instead, what I’m very excited about is the implication here. Is Nikon partnering with Tamron? Is Tamron going to make more of their (surprisingly good) lineup of lenses native fits for the Z mount? Either would be a very interesting possibility.

Nikon has been loathe to allow third-party companies access to proprietary lens mount information in the past. But if we suddenly start getting some high-quality native Z lenses from Tamron, it could rapidly accelerate the appearance of missing Z lenses. I certainly wouldn’t complain if the Tamron 70-210mm f/4 became a Z-series reality. Same goes for some of Tamron’s other good glass like the 100-400mm f/4.5-6.3 or 90mm f/2.8 Macro. These lenses would likely be budget options compared to Nikon’s existing high-end Z glass, but they’d still be great choices for a lot of users. And there’s no telling what future optics a Nikon-Tamron partnership could produce.

I should emphasize, Nikon and Tamron have made no public mention of the situation so far. It may be an odd one-off decision for this single lens and nothing else. But the possibilities are intriguing, and I look forward to hearing more information. Tamron historically wasn’t known as a high-end lens manufacturer, but they’ve really upped their game in recent years and are clearly capable of producing some great glass.

Nikon Z 28-75mm f2.8

Here are the primary specifications of the 28-75mm f/2.8:

  • Mount Type: Nikon Z Mount
  • Focal Length: 28-75mm
  • Maximum Aperture: f/2.8
  • Minimum Aperture: f/22
  • Aperture Blades: 9, rounded
  • Filter Size: 67mm
  • Lens Elements: 15
  • Lens Groups: 12
  • Special Elements: 3 aspherical, 1 ED glass, 1 Super ED glass
  • ARNEO Coating: Yes
  • Nano Crystal Coating: Yes
  • Fluorine Coated Front Element: No
  • Electronic Diaphragm: Yes
  • Vibration Reduction: No
  • Internal Focusing: Yes
  • Control Rings: One (generally for manual focus)
  • Function Buttons: No
  • Focus Motor: Stepping motor
  • Minimum Focus Distance: 0.19 meters (0.62 feet)
  • Maximum Magnification: 0.34× (1:2.9)
  • Mount Material: Metal
  • Weather/Dust Sealing: Yes
  • Dimensions (Length × Diameter): 121 × 75 mm / 4.8 × 3.0 inches
  • Weight: 565 g / 1.25 lbs
  • MSRP: $1200

The Nikon Z 28-75mm f/2.8 is available for pre-order here at B&H for $1200.

Press Release

December 13, 2021

THE NIKKOR Z 28-75mm f/2.8 IS THE AFFORDABLE GATEWAY TO FAST APERTURE AND FULL FRAME FIDELITY

Nikon Also Announces Development of the NIKKOR Z 800mm f/6.3 VR S Super Telephoto Prime Lens

MELVILLE, NY – Today, Nikon Inc. announced the NIKKOR Z 28-75mm f/2.8, the latest lens to expand the impressive NIKKOR Z portfolio, putting the potential for boundless creativity and maximum versatility into the hands of enthusiasts. The NIKKOR Z 28-75mm f/2.8 is an affordable and appealing choice for those ready to step up to a full-frame medium zoom lens with the benefits of a constant f/2.8 aperture including gorgeous, softly blurred backgrounds and excellent low light capability.

“Since the beginning of this year, we have announced numerous NIKKOR Z lenses for all levels of creators,   which have been commended for their unrivaled quality and edge-to-edge sharpness,” said Jay Vannatter, Executive Vice President, Nikon Inc. “Now we are continuing this winning streak by adding an extremely enticing option for enthusiasts in the rapidly growing full-frame market.”

The new NIKKOR Z 28-75mm f/2.8 is an attractive value for all types of photographers and creators, providing a lightweight lens with a versatile focal range and an f/2.8 constant aperture, all for an affordable price.  Capable of everything from impressive portraits with a soft background blur to extremely detailed landscape photos, striking low-light ambience or a small-footprint video production, the 28-75mm f/2.8 covers it all. The fixed aperture of f/2.8 enables a pleasing depth of field with natural bokeh to emphasize the focus on the subject. The lightweight lens weighs only 1.2lbs (565g), making it incredibly easy to pack, carry casually or wield for an all-day event. When paired with a Nikon Z 5, the new 28-75mm f/2.8 creates a compelling combination as a carry-anywhere, cost-effective full-frame kit, or paired with the Z 6II to step up content creation to the next level.

The NIKKOR Z 28-75mm f/2.8 offers many of the benefits of its highly acclaimed sibling, the NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/2.8 S. While both lenses are extremely versatile options and serve as staples in every photographer’s bag, the 28-75mm f/2.8 is approximately 30% lighter with a slimmer profile. The lens features a control ring for maximum customization, and excels in video creation due to minimal focus breathing and near-silent operation. The new 28-75mm f/2.8 also features a minimum focusing distance of only 0.19m (at 28mm), making it a great option for cuisine, table-scapes and intricate fashion.

Primary features of the NIKKOR Z 28-75mm f/2.8:

  • The NIKKOR Z 28-75mm f/2.8 delivers incredible sharpness and a bright f/2.8 aperture, affording the ability to shoot in low light or produce images with a natural and pleasing bokeh.
  • The lens weighs only 1.2 lbs oz (565g), which is 8.4 oz lighter than the NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/2.8 S.  In addition to its portability, the lens is well-suited for gimbal use for content creation and video productions.
  • The minimum focus distance of 0.62ft (0.19m) allows users to capture intricate details.
  • By employing a stepping motor (STM) with superior response, the lens quickly focuses on moving subjects during still-shooting or video recording. The extremely quiet STM greatly reduces the level of lens drive and operational sounds during focusing and video recording.
  • With the control ring, users can focus manually or change ISO sensitivity, aperture and exposure compensation in stills and video. The smooth rotation enables precise focus control. The knurling employed improves operation.
  • The lens is sealed to prevent dust and water droplets from entry, enabling use in everyday circumstances without worry.* It also features effective antifouling coating for easy cleaning.

Development of the NIKKOR Z 800mm f/6.3 VR S

Nikon is pleased to announce the development of the NIKKOR Z 800mm f/6.3 VR S, a super-telephoto prime lens for full-frame (Nikon FX-format) Nikon Z mirrorless cameras.

The NIKKOR Z 800mm f/6.3 VR S is an S-Line lens, delivering powerful rendering with outstanding resolution while thoroughly reducing color bleeding. By adopting a PF (Phase Fresnel) lens that enables a compact and lightweight body, it is highly portable despite being a super-telephoto lens. With its high rendering performance and superb mobility, this lens will be an excellent choice for many types of photographers ranging from advanced amateurs to professionals.

Pricing and Availability

The NIKKOR Z 28-75mm f/2.8 lens will be available in early 2022 for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $1199.95**. Additional information about the NIKKOR Z 800mm f/6.3 VR S will be available at a later date. For more information about the latest Nikon products, including other NIKKOR Z lenses and the complete collection of Z series cameras, please visit nikonusa.com.

# # #

Specifications, equipment, and release dates are subject to change without any notice or obligation on the part of the manufacturer.
 * Perfect dustproof and waterproof performance is not guaranteed under all conditions.
CES® is a registered trademark of the Consumer Technology Association.
**SRP (Suggested Retail Price) listed only as a suggestion. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time.

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