AF-S NIKKOR 16-35mm f/4G ED VR
Sharp as a razorblade
Very sharp lens and VR feature make it perfect for low light situation. A good alternative to the venerable 14-24 lens.
October 22, 2011
One of my most used lenses - excellent
I bought the 16-35 a year ago for my D700, to replace the 20-35/2.8. Needless to say that the 16-35 outperforms the old 20-35/2.8 in every aspect: no color aberration, improved corner sharpness, better colors and more "pop" to the images. I carry this lens where ever I go. It's excellent for landscape, with a very useful zoom range.
The close focusing ability allows great perspectives. I shot a rhino at a safari park from 10" distance capturing the entire rhino at an incredible angle - and you can see every detail on the skin of the animal.
Distortions are noticeable at 16mm when shooting straight lines / buildings, but can be easily fixed in PP.
VR has allowed me to shoot the Vegas strip at night with no tripod, where others had to use tripods.
Colors and contrast are superb. At f4 one can even isolate subjects and the lens produces a nice, unobtrusive bokeh.
In addition to landscape work, the lens renders itself equally well for tight indoor shots - family gatherings and group shots indoors, as well as museums, churches, etc. VR is a real bonus here.
It also works well with bounced flash - the metering on a D700 is always spot on.
About metering - I feel that this lens requires less metering correction than for example the old 20-35 or the 70-300 VR, the latter of which tends to overexpose in bright sunlight and contrasty scenery. It might be because of the wide angle view, but definitely something I noticed.
In the past year I have turned to prime lenses for most of my shooting, EXCEPT the 16-35/f4. It balances well on the D700, though it could be a bit smaller. Though it's almost the size of the 24-70, it is less heavy and easier to carry around.
This lens together with 2-3 prime lenses (50/1.4, 105/2.5 and 180/2.8) make a relatively lightweight kit and are my everyday tools for what I shoot: travel / landscapes / cityscapes, people / portraits and available light (including night) photography.
I can definitely recommend this zoom.
May 16, 2011
Finally found the right wide zoom
My first FF wide zoom was the 14-24/2.8, which is an incredible lens, but the limited range and lack of filters keeps it from getting into my bag very often. I got the 17-35/2.8, thinking it would fit the bill, but it just doesn't have the same level of sharpness. When the 16-35/4 was announced, I thought it might be the one. I've had it now for about 9 months and it goes with me everywhere. It's wide enough, but has the range to be useful in many situations. And I can use the very thin 77mm Nikon Circular Polarizer! And it's very very sharp. Much has been made of the relatively high distortion, but I've never noticed it in real world shooting. Seldom does the f/4 maximum aperture limit my shooting. On my D700, there always seems to be more ISO to use, and the VR also helps when using slower shutter speeds.
It's a really great lens!
April 29, 2011
Excellent lens, lightweight, VR works very well. Sharpness is excellent. There is some distortion in the widest settings but easy to correct (or even automatically). Now we need f/4 versions of the 24-70 mm and 70-200 mm with VR and an updated 80-400 mm!
April 16, 2011
Great lens for scenics and shooting in cramped interiors. Focal length range is a short, but still very useful. Allows for very short camera to subject distance with distortion very well-controlled at all apertures and focal lengths. Great depth-of-field. Internal focusing means the physical length of the lens doesn't change when focusing or zooming. Solid build.
April 15, 2011
great wide zoom
Very sharp wide zoom with great clarity, and fast focusing. VR2 makes slow shutter speeds hand held much easier and more reliable = more keepers. Also lighter than an equivalent 2.8 lense, not obtrusively big like the 24-70 2.8, and less expensive than a 17-35 2.8.
But, it does suffer from distortion at the wide ends, which isn't a problem if you shoot accordingly- rating should really be a 4.5 because of the distortion. Not an ideal lense for architectural photography. Photoshop or LR 3 make it easy to correct in post if need be though.
April 14, 2011
Wonderful, versatile lens
Exceptionally sharp. Great for landscapes. Has become one of my favorite lenses.
April 14, 2011
I love this lens. Dead sharp. Fast focus. All my filters fit it. I never need anything wider than f4. Terrific price.
April 14, 2011
Since l pass from the D300 to D700, l was waiting for a good lens to replace my Nikon DX 10-24mm. This 16-35mm is just superb. Fast autofocus and very sharp.. In the beginning l was asking to me why a VR on this kind of lens. Wow you can shoot at 20mm at 1/8 sec. very easy. So l recommend this lens and for the price, this is a "must" in your gear.
January 30, 2011
Fantastic Lens - Must Have!
The first thing I was pleased to find when I picked up this lens was that it was not nearly as heavy or bulky many people have warned me about. The satisfaction only grew from there.
Very sharp shots, and the VR worked great for a low-light wedding I was asked to do. Minor and easily-correctable distortion at >20mm. You won't miss the extra stop at this focal length.
Excellent balance on a D700 body.
I am very happy with this new lens!
January 21, 2011
Great Landscape lens
I love this lens, excellent sharpness and contrast I use it mostly for landscapes where I am really pleased to be able to use the filter.
lens is built to withstand being used every day by a Professional photographer. this is definitely a lens I would recommend to anyone wanting a great optics at a reasonable price.
January 12, 2011
great zoom range and SHARP
WOW, what a great lens. A perfect companion to my 35-70.
November 3, 2010
This lens is an incredible piece of glass. The angle of view provides both a stunning wide angle composition or a midrange frame in one lens. The lens is almost completely free of distortion and is very sharp.
I bought this lens for a trip to 4 national parks out west, and the photos were exactly what I was hoping for. This lens helped me produce the dramatic images that I had been practicing for all winter, and I am glad I chose this lens to bring with me. It is relatively light, and the zoom range was great on both the D300 and D700.
On a D300, the field of view is wide to midrange, and on full frame it is ultra wide to wide. Thank you nikon for putting out this amazing lens!
September 22, 2010
Excellent Available Light Performance
This lens produces excellent sharpness, low distortion and high contrast in low light conditions were a tripod is not allowed or practical.
Interior images of church, monuments, museums, and corporate headquarters are stunning. Couple this lens with a D700 or D3 and you can make images at 3200 ISO in very low light with beautiful results. This is a fantastic tool for art and technical results.
August 21, 2010
Produces quality pictures
I have only had the lens less than a year, but I did take it to Crested Butte and took a lot of pictures hiking. I used on the D300 and the pictures were crisp, detailed and had great color quality. Some were even taken early and late in low light.
August 11, 2010
I am a retired architect who still enjoys photographing buildings, both interior and exterior when I travel. This lens, in combination with todays cameras with excellent performance at higher ISO settings, allows consistently high quality hand held images which were impossible just last year.
August 3, 2010
Nikkor 16-35 f/4 VRII Lens a Great Performer
I've been using this lens for about four months and in that time have put it to good use shooting scenics and landscapes as well as close-ups and even portraiture.
The f/4 max aperture is great for shooting in available light. The VRII helps to virtually eliminate subject blur with slower shutter speeds.
Image contrast and color fidelity is simply awesome. I can't detect any noticeable color fringing at large magnifications on my computer monitor. I've made 20x24" gelatin-silver prints from cropped RAW files converted to jpegs with good results.
Build quality is superb. All controls are sturdy and well-placed. Overall balance is good due to all movements being internal keeping the length of the lens constant. That is good because the lens is pretty long and substantial in weight. Paired with my D700 it makes a sizable package. A wide shock-absorbing neoprene strap is a good replacement for the original strap to handle the weight.
August 3, 2010
Sharp!!!> Stop making lenses. This is it. You have won.
August 2, 2010
I'd love to see more like this
I own the 14-24 f/2.8 and it is an incredible lens. Unfortunately it sits at home quite often. It is heavy, scary with that big curved front element and limited in focal length range.
Prior to a recent trip to Italy I decided to give the 16-35 a try.
I'm impressed. While pixel peepers will still give the image quality nod to the 14-24 I've found that in real life this lens is plenty good.
I love that it is lighter and that I can use filters - a big plus.
I also am not swapping it out as often since it covers a wide range. The extra 11mm FL is a real bonus.
Like the other reviewer I didn't expect VR to be a big deal... but it is. I pulled off sharp 1/10 second shots inside cathedrals.
I wish Nikon would produce more high quality constant f/4 aperture lenses like this.
August 1, 2010
Love this lens
This lens became my primary lens beside 70-200mm f2.8 VR2. I most the time leave my 24-70mm f2.8 on my storage since i bought this lens...
August 1, 2010
Almost every serious photographer has or had an ultra-wide in their DX kit. For most of us it was something close to a 10-24 zoom. The first and one of the best of these is Nikon's pro-level 12-24 f/4 DX lens. This new 16-35 f/4 lens is close to the exact same thing but made for your FX camera. It is the perfect compliment for your FX kit filling in an important range.
My sweet spot for an FX wide is 24mm as determined by a search through my keepers over the past 5 years and also including DX at 16mm. Given that, a perfect solution is a lens with room on each side of that 24mm to preclude the need to change lenses if you need a little wider or longer. Other pro-level zooms tend to end or start at that 24mm which can be somewhat inconvenient in the field. My choice was the venerable 17-35 f/2.8 or this new 16-35 f/4. I chose the new model for several reasons.
One, with Nikon's FX cameras and their dim light capabilities, the need for that extra stop at f/2.8 is not as critical as once was. Two, the newer lens has VR for camera motion. Three, I intended to use it as a scenic and landscape lens where stopping down is typical. Four, most of the time in landscape a support system is used for night and late evening shots.
I felt the advantages of the better value, Nano coating, magnesium body with weather sealing, and newer optical design outweighed the one stop advantage for the 17-35 f/2.8. Moreover, I had often used the 17-35 f/2.8 and though it was a superb optic, I wanted maybe better.
I ordered this new 16-35 f/4 amid initial amateur naysayers claiming soft corners and less than perfect performance. Some even claimed it had a plastic body. One famous website even claimed this. Again, I reasoned that if it performed like the DX 12-24 f/4 and had the equivalent build and price, the new lens would still be what I needed.
I was both surprised and amazed by what I received. I can only say that some of these early complainers must not have really owned this product, especially with the obvious magnesium body being so easily distinguished. It exceeded my wildest expectations. On my D700, this lens required zero focus fine tuning and is razor sharp edge to edge from its widest to its longest, even wide open. The color and micro contrast is superb and has been almost glued to my camera on a recent 10 day shoot in the Grand Tetons. It was a wise and lucky purchase.
I’m somewhat surprised that a few people are concerned that this lens tends to have strong barrel distortion at 16mm. I agree that it does, but find it trivial. One, it’s very easy to fix during the processing of the image. Two, I sometimes enjoy a little barrel distortion in some images. It’s why I also own a couple of fisheye lenses. Three, you can’t notice it unless there are straight lines in the image, and finally it is pretty much gone at 17mm. If you don’t process your own and if you don’t like and don’t know how to correct barrel distortion, consider this lens a 17-35 f/4 pro-level zoom. For me, I’ll keep the 16mm range. I would imagine that people who purchase an FX camera and quality optics ought to be able to develop their own images and would feel similar to me that barrel distortion is trivial.
I have a fairly large collection of Nikkors as well as a few third party optics going back to 1968, when I switched from another brand. Of that collection, I have four or five of what I call "Magic" lenses. These are lenses that continue to amaze me year after year. One of these is my pre-AI, now converted 105 f/2.5. Another is my newer Nikon 300 f/2.8 AFS VR as well as an old 55 f/3.5 Micro Nikkor. My wonderful 85 f/1.4 AFD also falls in this category. In my heart of hearts, I believe this new 16-35 f/4 AFS VRII will be another addition to my "Magic" collection.
Finally, serious Nikon users have been demanding that Nikon provide us with a series of professional high quality f/4 constant zooms for quite a while. A “thank you” to Nikon for the first of this excellent series. We await the rest.
July 31, 2010
Versatile wide angle performer
There are some people that complain that the 16-35 isn't very sharp. I must be one of the lucky ones that got a very good copy. My 16-35 focuses well and the VR works as advertised. I have also owned the 14-24 2.8 which is an amazing wide angle zoom but for me the extra reach, VR and the ability to use filters were key selling points for the 16-35. There is some distortion on the wide end so if you're shooting interiors you may want to look more closely at the 14-24. For people, editorial, event and most general photography the 16-35 will not disappoint.
July 31, 2010
My Nano Baby.
Bravo nikon, I have been shooting 1/8th of a second with vr on and shots are sharp. Now I have a choice between 14-24 and 16-35vr to shoot with,Bad weather I carry 16-35 with a filter. Cool glass, Thanks Nikon.
July 30, 2010
Extremely sharp, effective VR
I use this on the D3 and took it on a trip. It was my main lens and performed wonderfully. The sharpness is excellent from corner to corner. Contrast is excellent. Found out the hard way that I could not use a Cokin P filter holder on the trip, due to massive vignetting, which I later learned that I should use the Cokin X-Pro series instead. Also used a Singh-Ray Vari-ND and experienced massive vignetting as well. The Nikon slim C-Pol filter worked just fine, though.
My biggest complaint, though, was that the lens is very long. I would gladly give up the VR if it meant making the lens shorter. The VR worked but at such a wide focal length, camera shake is not a big issue and I find that I don't really need VR on this lens.
As someone who loves shooting at wide apertures, I found f/4 to be a sufficient max aperture for a lens in this class and was still able to isolate subjects at f/4.
Closest focusing distance is pretty short, which I found to be VERY useful at 16mm for interesting perspective effects.
I cannot see myself using this lens often for portraits (which is my style of photography) but this is the ultimate solution for group pictures and nature scenery.
July 30, 2010
This lens is very versatile, easy to use and quiet. It's a super product.
July 30, 2010
Excellent Alternative to the Classic
A year ago, I had a lot of my gear stolen, including a 14-24. Prior to purchasing the 16-35, I had already replaced my camera and the missing lenses, except for the 14-24.
I would keep checking the reviews, and such, regarding the 16-35 versus the 17-35 and the 14-24. The price was attractive, but it wasn't F/2.8.
In the end though, I decided to go with the 16-35. I couldn't have made a better choice. Extremely sharp, like the 14-24, but with a more usable focal range (I found that I missed the 24-35 range more than I loved the 14-15 range), and the abillity to mount filters. I am not a user of UVs, but I do enjoy polarizing cityscapes and capturing long exposures with NDs.
Color rendition is beautiful, and contrast is excellent. I never notice the one stop difference in aperture, and if I need it, I can turn on the VR (it's been in the off position since I purchased the lens). There is considerably more distortion on the 16mm end than on the 14-24, but it is fairly easy to avoid with careful composition, and correct in post-production.
Overall, I can't recommend this lens enough.
July 30, 2010
Range of zoom is great
I used this lens extensively on our recent trip to the Tetons. Great quality and the range of the zoom was very helpful.
July 30, 2010
Landscaper dream lens
I've owned a Nikkor 14-24 for a few years and I finally got to try the new 16-35VR f/4 lens. I have to say I am very impressed with this new lens.
I recommend this lens to anybody looking for a light, round filter capable, wide angle landscaping lens zoom lens. It balances a lot better than my 14-24 and the extra mm in the long end does let me get tighter shots whenever I want without having to switch lenses.
Distortion is noticeable at 16mm but easily fixed in software and not really noticeable for most natural landscapes
At first I thought the VR feature wasn't going to make that much of a difference since this is no telephoto lens. However I was amazed that it does make a noticeable difference in low light conditions and when you lack a tripod. I now wish my 14-24 had VR.
While not as sharp as my 14-24, for most landscape apertures (f/8 and beyond) this lens produces very good images, and probably as good as the 14-24 lens. Only wide open does the difference become noticeable with the 14-24 being better at the edges. Yet I don't think that's necessarily a problem for landscape photography since very rarely does on need to shoot wide open.
This lens was a pleasant surprise and I hope nikon keeps making more f/4 zooms. Being a heavy f/2.8 lens owner, I'm definitively liking the weight and price of this new line.
July 30, 2010
Excellent crisp sharp photos
Exceptionally sharp; not too heavy; easy to use; affordable.
July 30, 2010
This is a superb wide angle zoom, priced more reasonably than the 14-24mm, and in a package that is more friendly to the photographer. Although not great for architecture photography at its widest setting due to distorted lines, this limitation is easily corrected for in imaging software.
July 30, 2010