Gear

Nikon’s 500mm Prime is a Long Lens that’s Compact and Lightweight

It carries a big price-tag, but wildlife photographers will love the new 500mm

Alongside launching its new full-frame mirrorless cameras, Nikon also used it press event to pull the covers off the long awaited AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR, a super-telephoto lens for full-frame DSLRs and, of course, the new Z7 and Z6mirrorless cameras when paired with the FTZ adaptor.

The long lens is perfect for wildlife and sports photographers who want to be able to get the shot without wanting to (or being able to) get close to the subject, but what sets this lens apart is its dimension. The 500mm features a Phase Fresnel lens element which reduces the size and weight of the lens and, presumably in turn, the amount of backache wildlife photographers usually suffer from when humping around their long prime optics.

The Nikon 500mm is lightweight and compact.

In fact, the AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR features a diameter of 106mm and length of 237mm, while tipping the scales at just 1460g – which is around the weight of a typical 70-200 f/2.8 lens. Nikon also point out that other 500mm lenses can weigh around 3000g, so the Nikon version does represent a considerable weight saving that will appeal to those looking to shave pounds from their kit bags.

The VR technology offers 4-stops of compensation and will help keep shots sharp.

However, this weightsaving does come at a cost and the 500mm will carry a UK price tag of £3,699 when launched in mid-September, while European photographers will pay 4,299Euros.

For this money, users also get VR (Vibration Reduction) which offers 4-stops of compensation and features two mode; Normal and Sport, with Nikon explaining the Sport mode is ‘especially effective when photographing fast-moving and unpredictable subjects such as wild birds, or in scenes such as sporting events, as well as when recording movies, due to the stabilisation of the image displayed in the viewfinder.’

With a water and dust-resistant design, the glass in the AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR also features a Nano Crystal Coat, which is known to be effective at controlling ghost and flare.