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New AF-S VR Nikkor 300mm f/2.8G IF-ED lens
Dennis Hissink : September 16th 2004 - 08:00 CET
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NikonNikon Corporation is pleased to announce the introduction of the AF-S VR Nikkor 300mm f/2.8G IF-ED, a new high speed super-telephoto professional lens for Nikon digital and 35mm SLR cameras now with Vibration Reduction (VR) technology, focus preset functions, Meniscus front element and the first Nikkor lens to feature Nikon's Nano-Crystal anti-reflective coating, all to deliver professional quality sports and action photography. With Silent Wave Motor Autofocus Performance, Internal Focusing, Nikon ED Glass for extra-low dispersion, and G design for use with Nikon SLR models that feature Command Dial and Sub-Command Dial control, the lens has been extremely popular among professional photographers.
The lens features optimum performance among Nikon's selection of compatible SLR models, including the newest selection of 35mm SLR models and the new Nikon F6 and all of Nikon's D-Series Digital SLR cameras - D1, D1H, D1X, D2H, D100 and D70 as well as the newly announced D2X.

The first addition to this already fast and powerful lens is the benefit of VR (Vibration Reduction), an innovation that makes it possible to take sharper handheld shots especially when limited to shooting at slower shutter speeds than normally thought possible. This provides the advantage of being able to shoot more effectively at indoor locations and outdoor under dimmer lighting. With a 300mm lens, most photographers would limit their choice of slow shutter speed to 1/300 second. With the VR advantage, one could expect to shoot with the slowest speed that is up to about 3 speeds slower - as low as about 1/30second! Nikon's VR technology further enhances picture taking potential with a choice of two modes to match more shooting conditions. VR Normal Mode primarily compensates for camera shake, and includes automatic panning detection as well as automatic tripod detection. VR Active Mode effectively compensates for vibration in situations where it is more pronounced and more frequent, such as when shooting from a moving vehicle.

Complimenting the adoption of VR technology is the addition of an easy access row of controls on the side of the barrel. The Focus Mode switch enables instant switching between M/A (Manual-Priority Autofocus) and M (Manual Focus) modes; the Focus Limiter switch restricts AF-servo movement to a selected shooting distance range; the AF-L switch makes it possible to lock onto a chosen focus point from the lens; AF-ON engages autofocus from the lens, (in addition to the switch on the camera body); and Focus Preset instantly recalls a preset focus distance, an important feature to aid when shooting sports and you wish to instantly return to a specific distance setting such as home plate in baseball or the team's goal in soccer.

The AF-S VR Nikkor 300mm f/2.8G IF-ED also benefits from the application of Nano-Crystal Coating to selected elements, which provides superior anti-reflective properties that virtually eliminate ghost and flare and provide clear and vivid images when shooting under powerful sunlight or indoors under spotlights. Created and honed in the process of developing Nikon's advanced NSR (Nikon Step and Repeat) semiconductor manufacturing device, this marks the technology's first introduction in a photographic lens and in a consumer product.

Also new is a meniscus protective glass element. Nikkor lenses have traditionally incorporated optical and mechanical designs carefully implemented to prevent internal reflection, and the meniscus element succeeds in minimizing ghosting that can occur when light reflected off a digital camera's image sensor goes back up the lens barrel and reflects off an ordinary flat protective glass element.

The features already incorporated in the lens' predecessor are carried over as well. This includes Nikon's exclusive SWM (Silent Wave Motor) that combines fast and precise autofocusing with super-quiet operation, ED glass elements that compensate for magnification and virtually eliminate chromatic aberration, Internal Focusing (IF) for smoother focusing and a better balanced handling, as well as a rubber ring on the lens mount that delivers resistance to dust and drops of water penetration at the lens mount point.

Compatibility with Nikon's TC-14EII (1.4x), new TC-17EII (1.7x), and TC-20EII (2.0x) teleconverters extends the flexibility and total reach of the lens to as long as 600mm when mounted on a 35mm film SLR, and the same angle of view as a 900mm when mounted on a Nikon D-SLR cameras.

AF-S VR Nikkor 300 f/2.8G IF-ED Major Features:

• Vibration Reduction (VR) technology
Compensates for camera shake to help ensure sharper pictures in low light and at shutter speeds up to three stops slower, this technology advances the opportunity to extend hand-held telephoto photography into lower light level conditions.
- Normal mode primarily compensates for camera shake, even when panning
-Active mode effectively reduces the effect of vibrations that are experienced when shooting from a moving vehicle.
-Remains effective even when used with a tripod
-Automatically adjust when panning with a subject.
• Nikon's exclusive SWM (Silent Wave Motor) combines fast and precise autofocusing operation with super-quiet operation
• Exceptionally high optical performance, compatible with both 35mm and digital SLR models.
- 3 ED glass elements effectively compensate for magnification and virtually eliminate chromatic aberration
- Nano-Crystal Coating overcomes ghost and flare to provide clearer and more vivid images when shooting under powerful sunlight or spotlights
- Meniscus protective glass element to overcome internal reflections from digital imaging sensor
• The Focus Mode switch on the side of the lens enables quick response to changing situations with quick - switching between M/A (Manual-Priority Autofocus) and M (Manual Focus) modes.
• AF operation switch enables easy selection of settings:
- AF-L makes it possible to lock onto a chosen focal point from the lens
- AF-ON engages autofocus from the lens
- Focus Preset function instantly recalls a preset focal point
• Focus Limiter switch limits AF-servo movement to a selected shooting distance range
• Lens mount fitted with rubber ring that is resistant to dust and drops of water

AF-S VR Nikkor 300 f/2.8G IF-ED Major Specifications:

Focal length: 300mm
Maximum aperture: f/2.8
Minimum aperture: f/22
Lens construction: 11 elements in 8 groups (with 3 ED glass elements) + 1 meniscus protective glass element
Picture angle: 8°10' (Nikon DX Format: 5°20')
Minimum focus distance: 2.2m (86.6 in./ 7.2 ft.)
Maximum reproduction ratio: 1:6.1 (x 0.16)
Filter / attachment size: 52 mm
Dimensions: Approx. 124 x 268 mm (4.9 x 10.6 in.)
Weight: Approx. 2.85 kg (6.38 lbs)
Included accessories: Attachment-type filter holder (with 52mm NC), Front cap (non-interchangeable), Rear Cap (LF-1), Strap (LN-1), Hood (HK-30), Semi soft case (CL-L2)
Optional accessories: Circular polarizing filter (C-PL2L), Slip-in gelatin filter holder, Teleconverters: TC-14E II, TC-17E II, TC-20E II
   Read the special Photokina report
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