In addition to their new D3100 DSLR, Nikon has announced four new NIKKOR lenses, all of which will be hitting shelves in September. The lenses include the AF-S DX 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR, the AF-S 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR, the AF-S 24-120mm f/4G ED VR and the AF-S 85mm f/1.4G ED. These four new lenses bring the total number lenses released by Nikon in 2010 to seven. All four lenses feature Nikon's Silent Wave Motor technology—while the three zoom lenses all include Nikon's Vibration Reduction II Image Stabilization system.
AF-S DX NIKKOR 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR
At an estimated street price of $399.95, this DX lens is designed to take on the ever-growing number of affordable do-it-all lenses like the recently-announced Tamron AF70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro Zoom.
The VR II's image stablization abilities will come in very handy, especially if you plan on shooting at longer focal lengths without a tripod. Speaking of tripods, the lens includes a nifty "Tripod Detection Mode," which ensures that image stabilization stays activated and counteracts any small vibrations when mounted.
The lens also includes a High Refractive Index lens element, which helps to ensure high contrast, even at the maximum aperture. Two Extra-low Dispersion elements that help to eliminate chromatic aberration.
Like the other four lenses, the DX 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6 utilizes Nikon's Silent Wave Motor technology. As it is the cheapest in the line-up of new lenses, Nikon is touting it as a great companion to the D3100. We'll be happy to test that theory as soon as we get our hands on retail units.
AF-S NIKKOR 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR
This is Nikon's first FX-format lens to offer an impressive 10.7x zoom range. Aimed at a more prosumer or even profesional crowd than the NIKKOR 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G, this lens promises to be sharp from edge to edge, on both FX- and DX-mount bodies. (42-450mm DX equivalent).
The lens includes two Extra-low Dispersion glass elements to eliminate chromatic aberration, plus three aspherical lens elements meant to eliminate coma and aberrations resulting from wide apertures.
An M/A Focus Mode Switch allows shooter to easily toggle between automatic and manual focusing and Internal Focus provides fast and silent performance. And like the DX 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6, the FX 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 also includes Nikon's VR II system and a Silent Wave Motor. The estimated street price of this lens is $1299.95.
AF-S NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4 G ED VR
The FX 24-120mm f/4 (36-180mm DX equivalent) lens will quickly become a staple for users looking for a high-quality wakling around lens. Another extremely versatile piece of glass, this lens is a perfect companion to Nikon's 14-24mm f/2.8 wide angle.
Inside the barrel, you'll find two Extra-low Dispersion glass elements, three aspherical lens elements, and a Silent Wave Motor. On the outside, you'll find the increasingly popular A/M focus switch that allows full-time manual focus tweaking. Additionally, the FX 24-120mm f/4 utilizes Nikon's Nano Crystal Coating to cut down on ghosting and flare.
With a street price of $1049.95, which gives it 15 extra millimeters of focal length for the same price as Canon's 24-105mm f/4L IS USM.
AF-S NIKKOR 85mm f/1.4G ED
A big Nikon lens announcement just wouldn't be complete without a super-fast prime and this fits the bill nicely. Its extremely low aperture and 85mm focal length (127.5mm DX equivalent), make this an outstanding portrait lens for professionals and advanced shooters alike.
The f/1.4 aperture offers an incredible ability to separate one's subject from the background, even in low light. Like the FX 24-120mm f/4, this lens features a manual/auto focus toggle switch, Internal Focus, a Silent Wave Motor and of course Nikon's Nano Crystal Coating. It joins several other 85mm offerings from Nikon, including the affordable ($400) f/1.8, the already-pricy 85mm f/1.4D IF and the 85mm f/3.5G DX Micro ED VR.
Built to last, this rugged lens comes with a $1699.95 street price tag. This is a serious piece of glass, for serious photographers.