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Hard-working super-telephoto prime lens built for the field.

This professional-caliber 500mm super-telephoto prime lens stops distant action in in its tracks. Featuring Nikon’s superior Vibration Reduction (VR II) image stabilization and performance enhancing lens technologies, superior NIKKOR optics and a lightweight magnesium die-cast barrel with dust and moisture resistance, it’s ideal for photographers in the field shooting motor sports, outdoor athletes, wildlife and much more. Nikon VR (Vibration Reduction) image stabilization provides 3.0 stops* of blur free handheld shooting, assuring dramatically sharper still images and HD video capture.
Vibration Reduction
Silent Wave Motor
Nano Crystal Coat
ED (Extra-Low Dispersion) Glass
M/A
A/M
IF Lens

Stop distant action in its tracks

Fast super-telephoto performance

With 500mm of super-telephoto reach, there isn’t much you can’t capture with the AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR. Whether you’re on assignment at a race or after elusive critters in the wild, you can expect brilliantly crisp and dramatic images in rich color and amazing detail. Plus, the AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR is fully compatible with all Nikon Teleconverters, so you can double the effective reach.

Engineered for the field

Rugged, reliable and lightweight

The AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR is a workhorse on the track and in the field. Its rugged, lightweight design features a magnesium die-cast barrel and professional-grade dust- and moisture-resistant construction. It’s also host to an arsenal of innovative Nikon lens technologies like Vibration Reduction (VR II) image stabilization with tripod detection mode for minimizing shutter release vibration, Silent Wave Motor (SWM) for ultra-fast, ultra-quiet autofocusing, exclusive Nano Crystal Coat (N) and Extra-low Dispersion (ED) glass for superior color, sharpness and contrast. Even in the most demanding shooting situations, the AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR performs brilliantly.

Nikon Vibration Reduction

Learn more about Nikon’s in-lens VR image stabilization which assures dramatically sharper still images and video capture when shooting handheld.
*Based on CIPA Standard. This value is achieved when: FX-format compatible lenses are attached to an FX-format digital SLR camera.
Vibration Reduction
Vibration Reduction
A Nikon in-lens technology that improves image stability by automatically compensating for camera shake. Lenses that offer VR will feature the abbreviation VR on the lens barrel.
Silent Wave Motor
Silent Wave Motor
AF-S NIKKOR lenses feature Nikon’s Silent Wave Motor, which represents a significant advance in AF lens technology.
Nano Crystal Coat
Nano Crystal Coat
An anti-reflective coating developed by Nikon that virtually eliminates internal lens element reflections across a wide range of wavelengths.
ED (Extra-Low Dispersion) Glass
ED (Extra-Low Dispersion) Glass
An optical glass developed by Nikon that is used with normal optical glass in telephoto lenses to obtain optimum correction of chromatic aberrations.
M/A
M/A
Select NIKKOR lenses have a focusing mode which allows switching from automatic to manual focusing with virtually no lag time by simply turning the focusing ring on the lens.
A/M
A/M
A/M stands for Auto-Priority Manual Mode. This mode also enables an easy transition from autofocus to manual during AF operation. However, mode switch sensitivity has been altered to reduce the possibility of sudden unintentional switching to manual focus while shooting.
IF Lens
IF Lens
A NIKKOR lens in which only the internal lens group shifts during focusing. These lenses will be designated with the abbreviation IF on the lens barrel.
AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR 4.9 5 18 18
Perfect size and great quality I wanted some long glass that I could wield on a monopod. This fits the bill nicely. I can hike all afternoon with this lens on my monopod with the D7000 attached. It's not light but it's a whole lot lighter than the 600f4. The focusing is super fast...even faster for birds in flight when I set the focus limiter. I get tack sharp images easily when on a tripod and a high percentage of sharp images on a monopod at 1/800 sec. It works great with the TC1.4eII. I see no loss of quality in prints or on the computer. December 16, 2011
Sharp, sharp, sharp Had it for a month before taking it to Florida for a week of bird photography. The images are stunning for clarity, contrast, and sharpness. Even with the 1.4 t/c the shots are super sharp. I generally use it on a "W" brand gimbal mount but even handheld it is not that bad for birds in flight. April 14, 2011
Love it Extremely sharp, and love using it hand held, with a monopod or bean bag. The effect of using it at f4 is great, and still sharp. April 14, 2011
Great Wildlife lens This is the lens to get for birds and wildlife. A tack sharp lens. April 14, 2011
Simply Excellent Lightweight for its focal length and rock steady in the VR mode. Extreme clarity, excellent light management and fast focus make this a must for any nature/wildlife photographer. Outstanding performance on the D3x and the D3. Tack images with tons of resolution. Just superb. April 14, 2011
Love this lens! Wanted just a bit more telescoping that my 400mm lens and this does the trick. Not nearly as expensive as I expected it to be. Well worth every dime. Now I can see the eagles in the nest just like I am sitting there. Even my husband was impressed! This photo was taken approximately a football field away from their nest. April 14, 2011
Incredible lens Love it for High School football games. It's a great product at a fair price. September 22, 2010
pin-sharp edge-to-edge As a professional photographer I have used Nikon lenses for the last 21years. Nikon optical glass is the best in the World. The 500mmf4 & 600f4 are both crucial to my magazine sports photography: edge-to-edge sharpness and ease of use (fast / accurate focus, light weight and exceptional build quality are second to none. I would not be without my trusted Super-telephoto Nikon's. Highly recommend using the TC14E-2 when you need slightly more reach on difficult assignments,/ from f4- f5.6 but images are as sharp as they are from the prime lens. The Nikon 500/600 f4's are the best super-telephotos available. If your thinking of buying a Sigma or other make, choose a good second-hand Nikon everytime - its the optical glass that is all important, not the price ! August 25, 2010
Wonderfully Sharp and Contrasty Highly recommended for bird photography--very sharp and contrasty images. I use this lens on both the D300s and the D700 with and without teleconverters. Make sure you have solid support (sturdy tripod with gimbal head) or beanbag for sharpest images. July 30, 2010
Best all-around bird lens I ever used I have made 40,000+ bird images with this lens primarily on a D300. Optically, the lens delivers excellent performance with enough resolution to support use of a 1.7X converter on todays highest resolution Nikon DSLRs and it exhibits total freedom from fringing. The relatively low weight for such a fast, long lens makes it tolerable to carrry around in the field all day. The build is first rate and rugged. Auto focus speed on the D300 leaves something to be desired when working flying birds at relatively close range. That may be more a function of the body than the lens, however. The one serious problem is the inexplicable inablility to achieve proper focus with the TC-14E extender. I have tested three 500mm VR lenses, three 1.4X extenders, two D300 bodies, and a D3 body in various combinations and the problem arose in each case, without exception. There is just not enough range of adjustment in the Nikon "AF fine tune" to correct the situation. Fortunately, this problem does not occur with the TC-17EII extender. July 30, 2010
500mmf4 ED VR Outstanding, 'pin sharp' images from edge to edge, extremely high precision lens optics and lens construction. The 500mmf4 IF-ED produce results that are simply amazing, together with the 9 blade shutter to give outstanding Bokeh - this is a lens that I would highly recommend for sport, commercial, fashion and wildlife photography. (Cameras used Nikon D3's) July 20, 2010
fast focus - poor tripod mounting ring Great lens except for one thing. After using this lens for the first time the mounting ring cracked. After the fact I then found out from others that this is not an uncommon problem with the original equipment on the large Nikon lens. Nikon would not warranty it saying that it was improperly used. I was not happy but had to pay for a new tripod mounting ring. I shoot along side several other photographers that use their long lenses in the same way that I use mine. I have been using the 500mm lens with the new ring for over a year now and the new ring is performing as it should. Nikon said that the lens should never be picked up by the tripod mount or left on the tripod when moving the camera and attached lens. I have never seen a photographer do it any other way. April 15, 2011
Great lens, collar just a little stiff. This is a great lens. I owned a 500 P and thought it was the sharpest big glass I had ever seen. This lens is just as sharp with AF and VR. I own or have owned just about every medium and large telephoto lens from Nikon in the last 30 years and this is my favorite. Could it be a little lighter, sure. There's no such thing as a free lunch. My only real complaint; the lens collar is just a bit stiff with a pro body attached. It rotates fine un-weighted, but with a heavy body- and especially mounted on a gimble-type tripod head- it becomes hard to turn smoothly in the small increments required with this kind of magnification. To make perfectly smooth, small, horizontal adjustments, I need to "lift" the lens and body in the collar just a bit with both hands. With one hand it's more problematic. I have a schematic of the lens and they specify 3 (!) different types of grease in the collar assembly so I dont think lubrication is the problem. Perhaps a smoother milled surface with PTFE involved somewhere (besides the thrust bearing) ? I don't have a solution but I'm sure the engineers at Nikon can handle it. When they do, 5 stars. On another note, all the best to the Nikon folks in Japan after the terrible earthquake. Sandgrouse April 14, 2011
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I am using a benro gimbal head
1 year, 5 months ago
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Anonymous
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For this lens AF-S 500mm F4 G ED VR I use the WIMBERLEY WH-200 VERSION 2 Head with the P-10 Quick Release plate, Its awesome! You can lock just the Pan or just the Tilt or both. Pan and tilts are smooth as ever and it's a very strong unit for this weight/size lens. It's clearly built for the heavy lenses. Weight is just not a problem at all. Unlike using say a ball head or traditional head.
Jan 27, 2014 by
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Anonymous
Honolulu, HI
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Honolulu, HI
Age: 55-65
Favorite Subject: Sports
Nikon Family: 21+ years
Experience: 1-3 months
Role: Semi-professional photographer

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Answer: 
Wimberley Gimbal MK2, not cheap though.
Mar 12, 2013 by
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KeithD

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I use Kirk.
Mar 12, 2013 by
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JoeR
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AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR
 
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The manual states that vibration reduction doesnt function with AF-On so if I want vr I should be switching the lens to AF-L?

Feb 22, 2013 by
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1 year, 6 months ago
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No set it to the neutral postion. There are three settings AF-L on and AF-L (lock) in between the two is a neutral position.
Feb 22, 2013 by
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JoeR

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Answer: 
No, It simply means if your lens has vibration reduction (VR) built into it which of course does, and you want the vibration reduction mechanism to be activated while shooting, do not use the the AF-on button on your camera to focus. Instead, hold the shutter button halfway down to focus, then press the shutter button all the way down to take the picture. I have a feeling the camera u are using probably does not have an AF-on Button. If so, this does not apply to you.

What you read has nothing to do with flicking the switches on the lens. Flicking the vibration reduction switch on the lens to On, only sends power to the vibration reduction mechanism. The Vibration reduction mechanisms in the lens is activated, and moves back and forth to stabilize your image only when the shutter button is press halfway down.

The article in the link below explains VR. Make sure to check the link at the end of the article to see how it work.
http://www.nikonusa.com/en/Learn-An...

Please see the link below to find out how to test the vibration reduction of your lens to make sure it is working.
http://support.nikonusa.com/app/ans...
Feb 22, 2013 by
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NikonLaurence
New York
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What is the size of the 500mm lens with the hood in place?

Mar 5, 2011 by
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JimMike
Rhode Island
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I'd like to know the length and diameter. Thanks.
3 years, 5 months ago by
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JimMike
Rhode Island
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Age: 45-54
Favorite Subject: Nature
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Experience: Less than a month
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Answer: 
Dimensions: (Approx.)5.5x15.4 in. (Diameter x Length)
139.5x391mm (Diameter x Length)
Weight: (Approx.)136.9 oz. (3,880g)
Mar 10, 2011 by
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NikonStaff
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AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR
 
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Will the 500mm f/4G ED VR lens function flawlessly with my D90 or D60?

May 13, 2011 by
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John P
Laplace, LA USA
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3 years, 3 months ago by
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John P
Laplace, LA USA
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Favorite Subject: Nature
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Answer: 
Yes.
May 13, 2011 by
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KeithD
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AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR
 
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is this lens compatible with D80?

Oct 8, 2011 by
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2 years, 10 months ago by
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Yes.
Oct 8, 2011 by
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KeithD
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What is the best Nikon body for the 500mm F4 AFS VRII

Oct 10, 2011 by
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I recently purchased this lens for bird photography. I like it very much. It is currently attached to a D5000 body and seems to work well. However, I am not sure I'm getting all I can from the lens while using my D5000. What would be the best Nikon body to use with this lens for bird and wildlife photograhy?
2 years, 10 months ago by
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Phil
Favorite Subject: Nature
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Answer: 
Please click on the link below for the lens simulator; try it with different camera bodies, it will help you to make the decision on what lens or camera you need.
http://www.nikonusa.com/Nikon-Produ...
Please visit our Learn and Explore website for Photography Techniques:
http://www.nikonusa.com/Learn-And-E...
Oct 11, 2011 by
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NikonStaff
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VR use and Mono-pod

Oct 10, 2011 by
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bob
Westchester NY
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What is the proper VR setting when using a mono-pod?
2 years, 10 months ago by
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bob
Westchester NY
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Westchester NY
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Favorite Subject: Portrait
Experience: Less than a month
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Answer: 
Please click on the link below for information:
http://support.nikonusa.com/app/ans...
Oct 13, 2011 by
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NikonStaff
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AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR
 
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Will this lens work well on a D40?

Feb 18, 2012 by
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Nikon Amateur
Riverton, WY
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I know this lens will work on a D90 and D7000 but my wife would like to use it on a D40, as well. Will it work well on that camera.\?
2 years, 6 months ago by
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Riverton, WY
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Answer: 
yes
Feb 19, 2012 by
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KeithD
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AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR
 
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What size UV filter (front screw not drop in) is compatible with this lens?

Jun 6, 2012 by
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2 years, 2 months ago by
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Screrw in filters cannot be attached to the 500mm, it has drop in filters instead
Jun 6, 2012 by
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KeithD
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AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR
 
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What is the appropriate DSLR for 500MM KIKKOR LENS ?

Oct 21, 2012 by
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The Pic. has been shot with D2X
Sample Photos & Videos
User submitted photo
1 year, 10 months ago
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Anonymous
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Answer: 
Any DSLR will work.
Oct 21, 2012 by
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KeithD
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