f/4 Standard Zoom replacement - when & if - will it happen?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by mbrennan, Nov 6, 2016.

  1. I have been on a lens weight reduction crusade in recent months and with a 7 week overseas road trip coming up next May I'm thinking about just how heavy and bulky my 24-70mm f/2.8 lens is for a travel lens. I have no beef with the lens as a short trip and and around home lens however, I now have experienced the advantages of Nikon's f/4 zoom lens range like the 70-200/4 which provides plenty adequate IQ, superior VR and is so compact and light compared to the f/2.8 version I used to carry.
    The 24-120mm f/4 VR model is several years old and the 24-85mm variable f/3.5-4.5 lens is also a few years old now. I have tried both and can live with the optics but the VR on both of these lenses is not up to the same standard as the current VR on the likes of the 70-200/4 and the 300/4 E.
    My style is to carry a trio of zooms for travel and only a small tripod and ball head for occasional ND and grad exposures. I know p.net deals only in absolutes, not rumours, but is a new f/4 VR standard zoom likely to surface from Nikon in the next 7 months?
  2. Your crystal ball is as good as mine. You could check what is the focal length, that you use the most on 24-70 and get a prime or two that fits your vision > a lighter solution, particularly for travel. I tend to use a beanbag and/or a monopod when I'm traveling....to make things manageable.
  3. The 24-120 was announced in August 2010 and the 24-85 about two years later. Doubtful that the latter will be replaced soon, the former seems to be due for an update though (it replaced a lens that was in production for 7 years).
    While I do own the 24-85 VR to fill the gap between the 16-35/4 VR and 70-200/4 VR, I don't find that solution satisfactory; ideally, I would like each of the f/4 lenses to be affixed to their own FX body and forgo the "gap filler" altogether. One solution I am currently trying out is to walk around with a D7100/18-140 combo at the ready and only bring out the f/4 zooms on an FX body when needed.
  4. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Unfortunately, you can keep reading rumors and I can guarantee that you will get nowhere. Some of the well known rumor sites only have reliable info maybe a week or two before the actual announcement date when Nikon themselves leak the info. You may recall that there were D400 rumors several times a year over 5, 6 years; some even gave it the model number the D9300 or whatever, but nobody outside of Nikon knew about the D500 until the time it was officially announced.
    I kind of doubt that either the 24-120mm/f4 or the 24-85mm AF-S VR will be updated soon. Maybe Nikon will make the 24-120 an E lens. However, that lens uses 77mm filters. It is not exactly small.
  5. As others have said, no one who knows what Nikon is planning will tell, because they have signed non-disclosure agreements. I do want to point out that, for many years, Nikon did not produce a constant aperture f/4 equivalent of the 80-200mm f/2.8 and later the 70-200mm f/2.8 VR. There was a variable aperture 70-200mm f/4-5.6, not a terrible lens, but not nearly as good as the f/2.8 zooms.
    Les suggested substituting primes for the 24-70mm. If you can stand the lens changes, a couple of f/1.8 primes, say a 24 and a 50mm, will weigh perhaps 20 ounces.
  6. I would like to see Nikon make a 24-70/4 that would be similar in quality to the 24-70/2.8E but somewhat smaller and lighter. I prefer zoom ranges that are not greater than about 3x mainly for image quality reasons but also for better build quality. Of the available standard zooms, I use the 24-70/2.8E.
    For tele zooms I use the 70-200mm f/4 most of the time outdoors as it is about as good optically as the f/2.8 version but is much smaller and lighter and I prefer its out of focus rendering. I already feel that the weight savings obtained by using 70-200/4 and 300/4 PF (instead of the f/2.8 versions) are considerable and I'm quite happy with the bag weight when carrying these three lenses.
    There isn't a clear precedent to the update schedule of the f/4 constant zooms as this is sort of a new lineup. On the other hand, the f/2.8 24-70 and 70-200 seem to be on a regular update schedule.
  7. A Nikkor AF-D 50mm f/1.4 is something I do actually have hiding in the bottom of my lens bag........ It's indeed tiny and lightweight but I do have a subjective issue with that hexagonal bokeh it produces.......
    Might be time to trial it as a standard zoom substitute on a couple of photo day trips away from home to see if I can live with 50mm and zoom in and out with my feet. I'd be squeezing it in between a 14-24mm f/2.8 (non negotiable lens- it alawys comes with me) and the 70-200mm f/4.
    I have checked several recent batches of images where I have used the 24-70mm and 35mm to 50mm is where I use it most.
  8. 14-24mm f/2.8 (non negotiable lens - it alawys comes with me)

    A-ha! There is some weight there ... ;-) I replaced my 14-24 with a 20/1.8 and lost a lot of weight doing so. I use the 20mm a lot more frequently than I used the 14-24. 1.3 stops more light, better autofocus, much better resistance to flare and ghosting, takes filters, I find the 20/1.8 to have many advantages. I never got along with the 14mm aesthetics with the exception of cropped shots simulating shift in architectural photography. (I'm not suggesting what works for me would necessarily work for someone else; it's just an option that may be considered).
  9. Curiosity ... ( iknow about that cat.. :) )
    What camera are you using on those small roundtrips ?
    If DX , maybe the all new F2.8 - $.0 18-80mm is an option ? still bulky but much less bulky than a full frame lens...
    Otherwise a DX-Camera with accompanying lens might also be an option ?
  10. Matthew, my Nikon FX travel kit is the 24-85 mm others have mentioned, the 70-200mm f4, and a fast prime, usually the 20mm f1.8. The
    focal length of the prime can change depending on your needs for wide angle. Sometimes I substitute a 35mm or a 50mm. I leave my 24-
    70 f2.8 at home as it is too big and heavy.

  11. The Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC is a heck of a lot smaller than the Nikkor equivalent (and the non-VR version) - it's slightly, but not much, bigger than the 24-120 f/4, which itself is bigger than I expected it to be. Since I recently acquired it, I've tended to use the Tamron as a walk-around, even though I've never really been sold on the mid range anyway - but in general I'm more likely to carry a 14-24 and a 70-200 than a mid-zoom.

    If anything I'd rather see Nikon make a 28-120 f/4 that's actually small. 24mm is certainly useful a significant number of times over 28mm, but with my limited knowledge of optics I'd expect the 24mm end to be contributing more to the size of the lens than the 120mm end.

    I've always said I'd really like Nikon to find a way to make a kit zoom that actually folds flat (e.g. by making multiple elements PF and allowing them to collapse together) for storage. The DX kit zooms do this a bit, but I wouldn't be averse to something that allowed me to store my D810 sideways in my bag - other than the 50mm E-series that I bought for compactness reasons. Barring a shift away from the DSLR we're stuck with the weight of a prism (though I maintain Nikon could make a model under the D610 that had a pentamirror - at least if they hadn't used the "D500" name) but there are full-frame film cameras that weren't big and heavy, and while I have more than my share of hefty optics, I'm not averse to an alternative that's not my RX100.

    ...Says the man still lusting after 400 f/2.8s...
  12. I would like to see Nikon make a 24-70/4 that would be similar in quality to the 24-70/2.8E but somewhat smaller and lighter.​
    Canon does offer such lens - competing at least in price with their own 24-105. For me, 70mm always feels a bit too short which is why I stay away from those expensive and heavy f/2.8 mid-range zoom lenses. In terms of focal length, Leica has gotten it right with their current SL lens set: 24-90/2.8-4 and 90-280/2.8-4 would make a nice (travel) set - if it wasn't for the weight: 2.5 lbs and 4 lbs, respectively (price, naturally with Leica, is another factor).
    There are some lenses that cover 15/16/17/18 - 30/35 and another set that covers 12/14 - 24; I wonder if there will ever be something like an FX 16-50 or FX 15-45? At least for me, the mid-range zoom issue would be solved for good (none needed).
  13. For travel you might consider Nikons 24mm & 50mm f1.8G, plus 70-200mm f4. Very versatile, and fast. The other great thing is the lenses are compact! I completely quit carrying 24-70 f2.8 & 70-200mm f2.8 for travel. I use them for weddings only. I see them as specialty lenses now. My travel set? Nikon 24mm PC-E (I use shift to get 3-shot panos), Sigma 50mm f1.4A, Nikon 105mm f2.8 Micro (sometimes replace it with Nikon 80-400mm AFS if wildlife available.) Not as compact as f1.8G set up, but very capable & versatile. I don't see me ever going back to carrying f2.8 zooms for travel.
    Kent in SD

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