Information on Nikkor 24mm f/2.0 and f/2.8 wideangle lenses

 
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The 24mm has only about a 10° narrower angle of view than the 20mm lens where generally most people regards focal length for true ultra-wideangle range begins. Lenses at this focal length provides about twice the image of a 35mm lens and about three times that of the 50mm lens. With a highly versatile 84° picture angle, the 24mm lens is a perfect compromise between ultra and regular wideangles - thus, this focal length is indeed an ideal lens for a wide scope of general photographic application such as in landscape, travel, candid and architectural photography.

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The entire family of Nikkor manual focus wideangle lenses comprised of three popular focal length at 24mm, 28 and 35mm. At 24mm Nikkkor has two options at either a high speed f/2.0 and a moderate lens speed of f/2.8; while both Nikkor 28mm and 35mm have three alternatives to choose from. While lenses at 24mm focal length have the widest angle of view among all Nikkor wide-angle lenses and though it is just a small step away from the super wide-angle. For those who still have some problems handing the slightly exaggerated perspective of ultrawides angle lenses, this lens can be a good compromise, as it's a lot more easier to use with its 84° picture angle.

Also, despite the wide filed of view the lens generates, the strong rendition of perspective can be controlled quite easily with this lense. But more importantly, other than including a wider scope of background information with its wide angle of view, photographically, this lens still permits the photographer to maintain a close visual relationship with the subject, an element which is especially useful for handling photojournalism, reportage or news photography. Generally, among the many possible complementary elements used in a photograph - such as people, surrounding and the environment can be easily established in a photograph with a lens type such as the 24mm Nikkor. Here, depth of field again becomes an important element in bringing together the components within an image. As all Nikkor MF lenses have great physical design in their handling and equally excellent illustrations of secondary photographic aid such as brightly-marked DOF scales on their lenses to supplement the photographer, making lenses at this focal length an even more appealing to those who are always have to work with human elements in their assignments.

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Strangely, Nikon's first wideangle at around this focal length is a 25mm introduced during the rangefinder era. The lens was a W-Nikkor 2.5cm f/4.0 which was first seen in 1953 before the Nikon S2 was introduced. The lens has a simple 4 elements in symmetrical optical design. It is a derivative of the simple double-Gauss design and believed to be a copy of the Metrogon lens designed by Bausch & Lomb around the late 40's. The old lens of 25mm needs an external finder help to focus as the lens does not has a focusing ring and for quite a while until another wideangle Nikkor-O 2.1cm f/4.0 was introduced, this ultra compact sized lens used to be the widest wideangle lens available for Nikon rangefinder cameras.

Picture Courtesy of Mr. Ernest D. Swersky <newfie1@airmail.net>

Stray cats on the streets by Flavio Sganzerla, Brazil
Stray alley cats ...

Credit: Image courtesy of FlavioSganzerla from Brazil, whose online PORTFOLIO can be accessed at Flickers. Image copyright © 2006. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

There are two available MF Nikkor lens options at this specific focal length of 24mm and an AF model for you to choose from. Both of the manual focus lenses (similarly, the AF counterpart as well) use a retrofocus* optical design commonly used in reflex lenses for SLRs. Combining a focal length just in between ultra and regular wide-angles, lightweight and compact enough to enable one to travel light, a good options in their respective maximum aperture of either f/2.0 and f/2.8 and a superior optical performance - making these two Nikkor ultrawide lenses a firm favourite among the many Nikon photographers. Each of these two lenses have their respective faithful followers/users. The choice of which lens is best based on budget and individual preference for additional lens speed. 24mm focal length

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In a retrofocus design, the back focus is designed longer than the lens' focal length to allow clearance for the movement of the camera-mirror. It consists of front diverging and rear converging lens groups, the opposite of telephoto design - and is therefore also called the reversed telephoto design.
* In the retrofocus design, which is advantageously applied to wideangle lenses, the back focus is designed longer than the lens' focal length to allow clearance for the movement of the reflex-mirror (Therefore, NO Mirror-Lock-Up or separate viewing accessory is required). It consists of front diverging and rear converging lens groups, as opposed to the telephoto design, and is therefore also called the reversed telephoto design.

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Nikkor 24mm f/2.0 was once, the fastest lens in its class (Although it is not exactly the fastest 24mm in the world, that honor belongs to Canon FD 24mm f1.4 !). In fact, Canon quietly released its EF 24mm f1.4L, after Nikon has chosen to introduced their first ultra-high speed wideangle lens at the 28mm focal length in 1993, that was the AF-D Nikkor 28mm f1.4 which has an precision grounded aspherical element in its optical design and enables it to maintain superior optical performance across its widest apertures.

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Between the two Nikkor alternatives, you can either choose a higher speed version (Nikkor 24mm f/2.0) or a slightly slower (Nikkor 24mm f/2.8) lens model to suit your budget, individual preference and your type of photography. The Nikkor 24mm f/2.0, in particular has been a clear favourite among many professionals. Its fast lens speed, impressive optical performance and superb handling making it an ideal solution for use in available light photography; it has been enjoying a rave reviews as one of the top lens of choice for this specific kind of professional application. Given its fast speed, the high performance Nikkor 24mm f/2.0 lens features an unusually compact and lightweight construction. So, can also safely assume there was no Non-AI lens for this lens.
Credit: Image(s) courtesy of 'Shutterblade team' (e-mail)who specialises trading of new, used collectable cameras. The Company also operates a popular Ebay Store. All image(s) appeared herein are Copyright © 2005. All rights reserved.

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Famed for its superior optical quality, which hallmarks by optimum image flatness and uniform edge-to-edge brightness that extends to its closest focusing distance - could have a direct relation between adoption of Nikon proprietary Close Range Correction system with its superior optical design. The NIC also enabling high contrast images present across the entire range of apertures from f/2.0-f/22. The original version of this lens was believed to have been introduced back in 1977. The AI-S version of this Nikkor 24mm f/2.0 was introduced only during early stage of 1982. Other than AI-s features such as lens coupling system at its rear and minimum aperture painted in orange, the solid Chrome lens mounting ring has been changed to an aluminum lens fastening ring.

With relatively good lens speed, the alternative Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 has quite a eventful updates over the years. The AI-S Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s version was first introduced back in December, 1981(while older Pre-AI version has an AI-spec version too). The lens is slightly lighter and equally well corrected for distortion. In both of these Nikkors, Nikon CRC with a ' Floating Lens Element' system is applied for exceptional image quality even at their closest focusing distance of 0.3m (1'). Way back in 1967, the Nikkor 24mm f2.8 was already a hit among many serious amateurs and professionals, it was world's first commercial production 35mm optical lens that utilized a close focus optical correction system - more popularly referred as Close Range Correction ("CRC") - a Nikon pioneered optical innovation that ensure some selective Nikkor lenses employs a floating element system for better close-distance performance. The system was also able to maintain high optical performance even you use lenses equipped with this design for close-up photography. In fact, the 24mm f/2.8 permits up to 10X Magnification when combine with some specific close up attachments such as Bellow Units. Besides news, journalism, landscape, travel and candid photography, this lens demonstrates its worth in constricted areas such as in architectural photography and news photography.


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MORE... The faster speed Nikkor 24mm f2.0 and the Nikkor 24mm f2.8 both share many standard lens accessories such as 52mm filters.

<<< ------ The Current Nikkor is an AF-D 24mm f/2.8; will there be a high speed 2.0 in the near future ? Quite likely, if he demand for fast prime optic grows. But can also be quite unl;likely, based n current trend of demand for high performance zoom lenses...and Nikon will only glue to where the money is. The AF 24mm f/2.8 has a few versions, the 1988 which has a similar optical design is a all plastic shell lens, the appearance was reverted back to a more traditional feel again in November, 1993 with a distance chip incorporated within (see picture at left).

Manual Focus versions:- Nikkor Lenses at 24mm focal length : | Early Versions (non-AI) | mid-1970 (pre-AI) | Late 1970 (AI) | Early 1980 - Present: 24mm f/2.0s ; 24mm f/2.8s | Additional info on: W-Nikkor 2.5cm f/4.0 Relative - Autofocus Nikkor lenses / AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s / AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D ultrawideangle lenses

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Recommended links to understand more technical details related to the Nikkor F-mount and production Serial Number:
http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/index-153.html by: my friend, Rick Oleson
http://www.zi.ku.dk/personal/lhhansen/photo/fmount.htm by: Hansen, Lars Holst
http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/hardwares/nikonfmount/lens2.htm
http://www.photosynthesis.co.nz/nikon/serialno.html

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Credit: MCLau®, who has helped to rewrite some of the content appeared this site. Chuck Hester® who has been helping me all along with the development of all these Nikon websites; Lars Holst Hansen, 'Hawkeye' who shares the same passion I have; Ms Rissa, Sales manager from Nikon Corporation Malaysia for granting permission to use some of the official content; Ted Wengelaar, Holland who has helped to provide many useful input relating to older Nikkor lenses; Some of the references on production serial numbers used in this site were extracted from Roland Vink's website; Hiura Shinsaku from Nikomat Club Japan. Lastly, to all the good people who has contributed their own expeience, resources or kind enough granted permission to use their images of their respective optic in this site. It is also a site to remember a long lost friend on the Net. Note:certain content and images appeared in this site were either scanned from official marketing leaflets & brochures published by Nikon and/or contribution from surfers who claimed originality of their work for educational purposes. The creator of the site will not be responsible for may discrepancies arise from such dispute except rectifying them after verification. "Nikon", "Nikkormat", "Nippon Kokagu KK" & "Nikkor" are registered tradename of Nikon Corporation Inc., Japan. Site made with an Apple IMac.