Additional Information on
Nikon AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s and AF-Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D Ultra-Wideangle Lenses

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RF Nikkor-W 25mm f/4.0

Background & a quick reference on Version History The first Nikkor ultrawide that broke the technological barrier of 28mm focal length was a W-Nikkor 1:4 f=2.5cm RF wideangle lens which was introduced after the rangefinder W-Nikkor 28mm f/3.5 in 1953 (actually it was almost half a decade earlier than the more famous RF Nikkor-W 1:4 2.1cm ultrawideangle lens).

Range finder optical constrcution for Nikkor-W 24mm RF lens   The RF Nikkor-W 25mm lens has an innovative symmetrical optical system, consists of only a 4 elements rare-earth glass type materials in its optical group and hence, making it an extremely compact ultrawideangle. However, similar to the other Nikkor-W, it requires an external optical system for picture composition When the reflex Nikon F was introduced in 1959 with an advantage of direct reflex viewing system; Nikon has designed a new lens with a slightly wider angle of view of 24mm instead of 25mm.

Nion retrofocus design in 24mm reflex type
The first radical change in its lens design to suit Nikon F reflex photography was finally realized in an AUTO Nikkor-N 1:2.8 f=2.4cm lens which used revised 9 elements in 7 groups design internally and it was actually being marketed quite late in 1963. In 1975, another followed up version was released during the pre-Ai period. This version finally has a modern Nikkor feel where older cosmetic design used in previous AUTO Nikkor series of Nikkor 24mm. The version with multi-layers lens coating which has indication with an extra "C" after NIKKOR-N.C at the lens data was only being marketed quite late in 1972).

In 1977, the Nikkor 24mm lens group has a few options for selection of lens speed. Photographers can select either Ai-spec Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 or the Nikkor 24mm f/2.0 with a faster maximum lens speed. The 24mm f/2.8 has actually went through some optical improvement during that period and formed the basis for the 1981's Ai-S-spec Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s version. By then, the Nikkor 24mm lenses have already established a good reputation for its top quality resolution and performance. Incidentally, the 24mm f/2.8 can yield one of the highest magnification ratio among all available Nikkor wideangles lenses (It delivers an astonishing magnification ratio up to 10X when use reversibly mounted on a Nikon Bellow Unit - only second to the Nikkor 20mm f/2.8s 12X !). Lastly, the AUTO Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 lens was the world's first wideangle lens for 35mm photography that employed with Close Range Correction (CRC) system. This innovative optical design has greatly enhanced performance of wideangle lenses when using them for close focusing.

NOTE: - Along with the autofocus Nikkor optics, Nikon still offered manual focus Nikkor lenses to a very late stage, some of the manual focus Nikkor may have been benefited from technological development, and could have been updated with Nikon latest lens coating process of SIC (Super Integrated Coating) from the traditional NIC (Nikon Integrated Coating). Source: Nikkor Club

Nikon's early 24mm f/2.8 non Ai wideangle lens Nikon's early 24mm f/2.8 non Ai with lens coating wideangle lens Pre Ai era Nikon's Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 wideangle lens Ai version of Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 Nikon's manual focus (MF) Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 Ai-S wideangle lens

Generally, virtually all wideangle lenses in modern days are using retrofocus design for reflex SLR camera. A 24mm lens provides about 10° wider filed of view than the 20mm lens where generally most people regards focal length for true ultra-wideangle range begins from this focal length. It also 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 / regular wideangles - thus, it is indeed an ideal lens for a wide scope of general photographic applications. But more importantly, its wider picture angle delivers information of the subject in focus, and hence maintaining a close visual relationship of background info with the subject in focus. It is photographically an element which is useful for handling tasks such as photojournalism, documentary, reportage/news photography or even for on location portraiture. Depth of field again becomes an important element in bringing together the components within an image and due to its nature of an ultrawide angle lens, it generates extensive depth of field when stopping down the aperture; it makes out of focus a less problematic issue.

The daparture tunnel at Thailand new Suvarnabhumi International Airport shortly after official launch, 2006
The departure tunnel at Thailand new Suvarnabhumi International Airport shortly after official launch, 2006

Interim photo ONLY. Looking for contributing images to replace this.

Leofoo® 2007

Nikon AF-Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s Ultra-wideangle lens
Marketed 1986; Discontinued: 1991

The autofocus version of the AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s fixed focal length ultrawideangle lens was released as an important component wideangle optic among the first generation of the AF Nikkor lenses because it has the widest picture angle within that group during those days. But the first version of the AF Nikkor 24mm wideangle had a weaker exterior design, which was the common issue for all those early versions of the AF Nikkor lenses. However, optically it is still delivering a comparable performance with the Ai-S spec Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s as the lens shares almost a similar optical design. Well, I guess Nikon priority during that time was simply concentrating in bringing a good, workable solution for their autofocus system. Well, although I accept the technical aspect where it may involve more issue just to package the lens now with an autofocus dressing but I don't think anyone would disagree the transitional change was done in a rush manner where the overall design of the early series of the Autofocus Nikkor lenses was way below everyone's expectation in how the autofocus version of the Nikkor 24mm wideangle should look like.

An early version of autofocus AF-Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 s ultrawideangle lens
For those photographers who may be so accustomed to conventional built quality of older Nikkor lenses may feel uncomfortable with the new AF 24mm. Firstly, it has a very strong polycarbonate body structure. Although it was primarily being designed as an autofocus lens, and probably Nikon has underestimate user's responses in a time switching over to AF by not considering the needs and sentimental reason of the previous manual focus photographers. So, here we find a new 24mm wideangle that has a very strong plastic feel with a rather loose and a very narrow manual focusing ring.

To say it was a rush work may not be exaggerating as even the distance scale in the plastic concealed distance window was not colored coded (so did the depth of field scales). But I guess most of these minor issues may be acceptable, but the real disappointment for most consumers was actually the overall fragile feel presented in the EXTERNAL lens construction. Besides, Nikon has also eliminated the meter coupling prong which means to say, support for non-Ai Nikon SLRs was ended from here. When you added all these, Nikon has seemingly made a mistake because it has shaken user's confidence from the start.

: Image(s) courtesy of 'Danny Ryan where I found his picture of this AF Nikkor lens at his Ebay Store. All image(s) appeared herein are Copyright © 2005. All rights reserved.

Well, during those early days of Nikon AF photography, if you wish to acquire a wideangle for your autofocus Nikon you probably may not have too many choices as with today wide range of offerings. Good news was, as all the AF Nikkor lenses were presumably all Ai-S native. Thus, the AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s will integrate with virtually all the exposure modes (in particular, Programmed AE and Shutter Priority AE) across the entire line of Nikon AF/MF SLRs available during that time. Secondly, minus the discomfort on the exterior poor built quality, internally the lens are still retaining the same 9 elements in 9 groups with CRC optical design inherited from the manual focus 24mm. So, if you are confident how old MF lens can deliver for your photography, it was simply the same lens with equaling performance, further aided with an autofocus mechanism for the autofocus Nikon, that is all.

In general, the AF 24mm f/2.8s can be a very useful wideangle lens for a wide scope of photographic usage. As most wideangle lenses generates extensive depth of field which makes pre-focus a common practice. As long as the used aperture is a smaller number, the extended depth of field of a 24mm lens should provide safe coverage. This lens has 3 marked depth of field scales (f/11, f/16 and f/22) for you to refer where for practical reason, I do wish Nikon could added another one or two frequently used mid apertures such as f/5.6 or f/4.0 being added onto. Why ? because NOT all Nikon SLR bodies offer depth of field preview function and lens aided visual guide can be incredibly useful. Most higher spec Nikon models such as Nikon F4 , F801(s) or the Nikon F90(x) do provide this feature but some entry models that began to surface after early '90 were omitting this feature. Well, I am not asking Nikon to deliver us again with those colorful DOF visual printed onto lens as with those found on the manual focus lenses, but it offers convenience and help to a responsive reaction during shooting without activating another lever or button to check depth of field.

Early first version of AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s wideangle lens
Theoretically, the AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s will work with a AF-Tele Converter TC-16A to enable the lens multiplies the focal length by a factor of 1.6X or use it with a conventional Teleconverter such as Nikon TC-200 or TC-201s but such combination will revert the autofocus lens back to manual focus. On a practical note, it makes not much sense to do so as it will multiplying the primary focal length to an approx. 48mm standard lens range. Besides, the primary objective of why people buy an autofocus 24mm wideangle is because it autofocus - but not manual focus. So adding a TC and going back to MF is simply not a wise thing to do even if such possibility exists, right ?

Together with the current version of AF-D - they are all together 3 versions of the AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s being introduced so far. The minimum aperture lock for the FIRST version here used a twisted knob design where you can use it as a easy way to distinguish it from the next upgrade. It took Nikon 5 years to think of a upgrade for this original 24mm wideangle, along with the AF Nikkor 28mm f/2.8s and AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.4s, Nikon provided a lens update for the first version of the AF 24mm wideangle lens in 1991. Some Nikon folks referred them as "N" or "New" i.e. AF Nikkor 28mm f/2.8N or AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.4N. Here, I am using the term Mark I, Mk II, MK III to differentiate the version number. It doesn't really matter, as they are just a way to interpret the version history.

Wide and colours by Sebastiaan Veldhuise
Credit: Image courtesy of Sebastiaan Veldhuise, whose online PORTFOLIO can be accessed at PBase. Image copyright © 2006. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

second version of AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s (N) wideangle lens
Nikon AF-Nikkor 24mm f/2.8N (Mk II) ultra-wideangle lens
Marketed 1991; Discontinued: 1993

In 1991, Nikon did some improvement to the original AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s where some referred it as AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8
N or Mk II as I called it (don't be so defensive with the Canon way of lens identification method, as most of these manufacturers have been kept updating the lens; and the term used here is just a way for us to verify the version number, that is all.). What was new in the upgrade ? Just cosmetically. Nikon has finally answer critic by reverting the use of a double-roll hard rubberized covered manual focusing ring which provides the wideangle lens easier way to grip and focus during manual focusing. Although to certain degree wideangle lenses were behaving better but early Nikon AF SLR camera AF System have a tendency to hunt of focusing in some situations i.e. in particular when dealing with less distinctive outlines object and/or when close-focuses, possibly disrupted by shallow depth of field. A minor point was, Nikon has changed its minimum aperture lock to a slide switch type. Although less distinguishable as a updated feature, the distance scales were finally colored in yellow for feet. I felt the lens barrel has improved also with a darker finishing which helped minimizing the strong plastic feel of the lens as a whole. Optically, there was no surprises. The AF 24mm was essentially still using the 1981's manual focus Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s optical design and added with an autofocus mechanism as well as externally in a different outfit.

In operation, the AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8S auto/manual focusing as well as providing focus assist feature with compatible Manual Focus Nikon SLR bodies. The Close Range Optical Correction System has helped to maintain its high quality optical quality to be extended all the way down to its minimum focus distances. In this respect, I am not particularly sure if the lens can still be used with a Nikon Auto Bellow in reversible position to achieve the astonishing high magnification ratio of up 9X as with the manual focus counterpart. Compact and lightweight, this second version of the AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8S fit into everyone budget as a truly high performance fixed focal length ultra wideangle lens. Weighing almost similar to the AF predecessor at 8.9 oz. and measuring merely 3.5" in length, this provides excellent portability factor for anyone that prefers traveling light. It has a 52mm filter attachment size, making it easy sharing with other 52mm standard filter accessories. Lastly, as this version of the AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8N (Mk II) was only short lived between 1991 to 1993 and possibly only smaller quantity has been sold to the market during that time, as evidenced by most of the used units that kep surfacing at EBAY are of the original version.

Technical Specification for AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s; applicable to AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8N (MK II) ultra-wideangle lens:-

Type of lense: Autofocus Nikkor fixed focal lens with built-in CPU and Nikon bayonet mount
Focal length: 24mm; Maximum aperture: f/2.8; Minimum Aperture: f/22
Lens construction: 9 elements in 9 groups with CRC, floating lens elements for close focusing
Picture angle: 84° (35mm); 64° Nikon DX digital SLR format cameras (magnifies as approx. 48mm)
Diaphragm: Fully automatic,

Distance scale: Graduated in meters and feet/inches from 0.3m (1.0') to infinity (OO)
Distance information: Output into camera body with CPU interface system
NOT POSSIBLE with this version; Manual focus
Aperture scale: f/2.8 to f/22 on both standard and aperture-direct-readout scales
Depth of Field Scales: provided for f/11, f/16 and f/22
Reproduction ratio: 1:8.8 maximum
Minimum aperture lock: Provided (1st version twist knob; slide switch for MK II version)

<<<--- The specification may be applicable to two earlier mentioned versions. Shown at far left is the first version and picture at left hand side is second version.

Depth of Field Chart references for Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s wideangle lensReproduction ratio Chart references for Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s wideangle lens

Lens Coating: NIC (Nikon Integrated Coating)
Exposure measurement: Via full-aperture method for Ai cameras or cameras with CPU interface system
Mount: Nikon bayonet mount with CPU contacts; Attachment size: 52mm (P=0.75mm)
Standard accessories: 52mm Snap-On front lens cap; Rear lens cap LF-1; Hard lens case: the newer CL-30S Usable (Optional)
Optional Accessories: 52mm screw-in filters, Screw-in lens hood HN-1 metal hood(optional)
Dimensions: Approx. 2.5" dia. x 1.8"; Weight: Approx. 8.9 oz.

Usable Tele-Converters: - TC-201S; TC-14A (meaningless to do so).
Lens case: CL-30s, CL-34A, No. 61 soft pouch, or CP-8 plastic

Others: AF 24/2.8 plastic focus ring, twist aperture lock 200001 < 203265 - 255739 > Sep86 - Jun91
AF 24/2.8 New (MK II) with rubber manual focus ring, slide aperture lock < 310828 - 348471 > Jun91 - Sep94.
Reference: Roland Vink's lens data sheet.

Night sky by Che Yu Yang, Taiwan
Astro photography..

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

AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D ultra-wideangle lens
Nikon AF-Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D ultra-wideangle lens
Marketed 1993; current model as at 2006

The current version of the AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D was released back in 1993. It was at a time where Nikon autofofcus Nikkor zoom lenses were still having a starting focal length of 28mm*. Although Nikon actually has an AF Zoom Nikkor 24-50mm f/3.3~4.5S as early as in 1987 but as it was an variable aperture zoom and lack of lens speed was an issue for photographers who often has to deal in available light photography. This was the sole reason why this fixed focal length 24mm still has its own following during that time as there was not much of a choice of a faster lens speed ultrawide to 24mm. Well, things were beginning to change from 1993 onwards, the Multi-Segment Matrix Metering System, a truly original Nikon innovation that has slowly emerged as the market's mainstream metering system has been elevated by Nikon a step further with the enhanced 3D Matrix Metering System (first used in the Nikon F90(X)/N90(S) models). The Matrix Meter requires a corresponding chip in the lens section to relay focusing information for a more precise exposure calculation and this has resulted in many of the existing AF Nikkor lenses to go through a general lens updating program. The resulting AF-D 24mm featured here was one among the many that went through this general lens updating program by Nikon but other than this addition, the AF-D 24mm ultrawide remains virtually the same with the previous non-D spec versions.

* NOTE:- The widest picture angle available during end of quarter of the '90 in the AF Nikkor Zoom Lens group was AF Zoom Nikkor 20-35mm f/2.8D which was introduced along with this AF 24mm f/2.8D in 1993.

Perhaps Nikon has a lot of pride with the original optical design used in the 24mm wideangle lens because optically it was still adopting the same optical formula of 9 elements in 9 groups that actually first used for the
manual focus Ai Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 in the late '70. So, internally, this AF-D was also using the same optical formula all along with the previous versions. Well, to quote the lens is exactly the same with the predecessor may not be a little too conclusive. This is a D-spec Nikkor, you can simply verify the version via the "D" added after the lens designation. The lens has been slightly re-designed with a slightly rounded edges as well as the lens barrel section has been coating with a layer of resin which contribute to its better and more rigid appearance. Somehow, It works and restores an overall quality feel.

The classic Optical design used for the  manual focus / autofocus Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 Optical group and construction for the current AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D wideangle lens
In terms of system compatibility, the integration of the distance chip inside has enabled this wideangle lens has an extensive compatibility with virtually all Nikon SLR camera bodies - be it manual focus / autofocus, film or digital. On lens handling, the extremely compact and lightweight design of this AF-D 24mm has a rather short rotation from closest focus distance to infinity. This probably has helped the majority of Nikon models which use camera driven AF system to focus faster. The well illustrated depth of field may be good for quick visual guide during manual focus override. The external front filter attachment frame of this AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D wideangle does not rotate; making it easier for use with many front mounting accessories such as Bellow or polarizer etc.

Well, sometimes you may wonder why amidst all the available options of high performance zoom lenses with this 24mm focal length covered and yet there are photographers prefer going back to use a fixed focal length optic. I would think performance, practicality, portability and affordability are the key elements in enabling a lens to enjoy an evergreen status. Recently, a friend has left me with his price possession of a Nikon D2X with an AF-S Zoom Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8D ED-IF lens attached; with a combined weight of nearly 2kg (745g and 106mm in length for lens itself); I find you ought to be physically fit and technologically sound to be a modern photographer today as other than w weight factor, there are also a long series of mind boggling controls and buttons to mater. Come to think of it, do yourself need to be fully gear just to handle a casual shot ? Many may be but I am not and I guess this common philosophy could has been shared by many others. Personally, I still favor shooting in the light and easy manner and the last thing in my mind during photography is to struggle with the gears I use. This lens makes a good companion for photographer who prefer travel in the lightest possible package Its superlative optical performance has created many following over the years and for those who love to maximize potential of their autofocus film/digital Nikon SLR cameras, this lens makes a perfect match to serve this kind of needs. I am not so particularly sure if Nikon will replace this lovely wideangle lens with an aperture-ring-less G spec version in the future but I guess it is highly unlikely as one way or another, the big pool of market users who may have bought older Nikon bodies are still hard to be ignored by Nikon commercially.

AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D ultra-wideangle lens side view with lens elements AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D ultra-wideangle lens rear view withmetal lens mount AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D ultra-wideangle lens fron view direct

Credit: All Image(s) of this AF-D Nikkor wideangle lens courtesy of 'Shutterblade team' (e-mail) who specializes 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. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

The interior or Wat Suthat, Bangkok...
The peacful ambience inside the at the Viharn of this 1807 A.D. built Wat Suthat Buddhist temple in Bangkok with the Phra Sri Sakayamuni Buddha image at the center. I retained a few pilgrims at the bottom to show its magnifient scale.

Leofoo® 2007

Interim photo ONLY. Looking for contributing images to replace this.

Technical Specifications for AF-Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D ultra-wideangle lens:-

Type of lense: Autofocus primary; manual focus possible; Nikkor fixed focal lens with built-in CPU
Focal length: 24mm; Maximum aperture: f/2.8; Minimum Aperture: f/22
Lens construction: 9 elements in 9 groups with CRC floating lens elements for close focusing
Picture angle: 84° (35mm); 64° Nikon DX digital SLR format cameras (approx. 48mm based on 1.5 lens factor)

autofocus AF-Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D ultrawideangle lens setup
Distance scale: Graduated in meters and feet/inches from 0.3m (1 ft) to infinity (OO)
Distance information: Output into camera body with CPU interface system;
Reproduction ratio: 1:8.9 maximum at 0.3m
Aperture scale: f/2.8 to f/22 on both standard and aperture-direct-readout scales
Minimum aperture lock: Provided (with slide type)
Depth of Field Scales: provided for f/11, f/16 and f/22

Diaphragm: Fully automatic, 7 blades; Lens Coating: NIC (Nikon Integrated Coating)
Exposure measurement
: Via full-aperture method for Ai cameras or cameras with CPU interface system; not advisable with non-Ai Nikon bodies

Infrared compensation scale:- Provided

: Image(s) courtesy of 'Shutterblade's Ebay Store. All image(s) appeared herein are Copyright © 2005.

Mount: Nikon bayonet mount; Attachment size: 52mm (P=0.75mm)
External front filter attachment frame: Does not rotate
Standard accessories: 52mm Snap-On front lens cap; Rear lens cap LF-1 (newer or older ones usable);
Optional Accessories: 52mm screw-in filters, Screw-in lens hood HN-1 metal lens hood (optional)
Dimensions: Approx. 64.5mm (2.5") dia. x 46mm (1.8")
Weight: Approx. 270g (9.3 oz.)

Usable Tele-Converters: -TC-201S; TC-14A (similarly meaningless to do so; unless force to do so).
Lens case: CL-30s, CL-34A, No. 61 soft pouch, or CP-8 plastic
Circular polarizing filter II:- Usable (except with the dedicated Lens Hood HN-1); AF-3: Usable. (0); AF-4:- Usable. (1): ( ) Indicates maximum number of usable hoods (HN-36 for AF-3/HN-37 for AF-4).

Others: Production Serial Numbers believed to have started from 400001 for this AF-D Nikkor wideangle lense <400001 < 401331 - 488042 > > > - Roland Vink's lens serial numbering data sheet.

Nikon AF Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D side view Ultra-wideangle
| NEXT | AF Nikkor 28mm wideangle lenses

Version History: Old RF Nikkor-W 2.5cm 1:4 (1953) | Nikkor-N AUTO 1:2.8 f=2.4cm (1963) | Pre Ai version Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 (1975) | Ai-spec Nikkor 24mm f/2.8 (1977) | Ai-S-spec Nikkor 24mm f/2.8s (1981)

Some suggestive reading reference of this 24mm wideangle lens on the web
External Links): a little background of this lens from Nikon club Japan site; Ken Rockwell's one-page summary; Steven Bay one good page review of of this AF 24mm f/2.8D; another one page reviews at Photozone; trading price of this lens at the used market (Ebay).

Credit: Image(s) courtesy of 'Shutterblade's Ebay Store. All image(s) appeared herein are Copyright © 2005.

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Recommended links to understand more technical details related to the Nikkor F-mount and production Serial Number: by: my friend, Rick Oleson by: Hansen, Lars Holst

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Credit: To all the good people who has contributed their own experience, resources or those who are kind enough granting us permission to use their images appeared in this site Note:certain content and images appeared in this site were either scanned from official marketing leaflets, brochures, sales manuals or publications published by Nikon over the years 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.