Additional Information on
105mm f/2.5 Nikkor Telephoto lenses

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Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 early Ai version
Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 telephoto Lenses

By the mid of the '70, virtually all seasoned Nikon photographers would have known there was one hell of a good Nikkor lens at 105mm. Anyway, since the Nikkor 105mm f/1.8s lens was not being introduced until the early '80 and for quite a long spell, the Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 telephoto lens remained as the sole prime telephoto lens offered by Nikon at this focal length. Nevertheless, an equivalent option with different lens configuration was joined in as a special purpose lens, Micro Nikkor 105mm f/4.0 for macrophotography was being introduced in March, 1975. Whatever it is, many Nikon enthusiasts would rate the simple Nikkor f/2.5 telephoto lens as one of the most prized possession among all Nikkor optic and it has, indeed sold very well in number during those day.

Credit: Images of this early-Ai Nikko 105mm f2.5 Ai telephoto lens coutesy of: Russell Gough® <>" All images appeared herein are Copyright © 2003. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

The Ai version of this lens was introduced in 1977 and with a starting serial number from 740001. With a similar 23°20' picture coverage, this lens can focuses down to 3-1/2 feet (1m) from the film plane. It takes standard 52mm filters - the standard lens attachment size for most Nikkor lenses from 20 to 200mm during that time. This lens was also a direct upgrade from the pre-AI version introduced in 1975. One main difference of this version from the Ai-S spec lens introduced subsequenly was its metal Snap-On lens hood design which has a long, practical extension and it can be stored in the reverse position when the lens is not in used. The metal lens hood design is quite troublesome to change and store but its long extension is far effective in its primary function to block off stray light that might hit into lens elements - a common photographic scenario found in backlit portraiture and travel photography. To many users, the detachable lens hood issue was either a love and hate relationship. The front section of this version has a slightly larger dimension than the Ai-S lens that followed. One significant difference of features found in this lens is its minimum aperture which now has reverted back to f/22 from the earlier version introduced in early '70. Drawback ? Nothing much except its close focus ability.

* The Nikon E series has an alternative of 100mm f/2.8, introduced during late seventies with the pin-sized Nikon EM.

Popular photographic usage of this lens include head-and-shoulders portraits in the studio or on location, distant landscapes, photojournalism, travel, backpacking, candids of people, and available light shooting. The lens, like any other Nikkor lenses made during those era was solidly made. The lens coating is a distinguishably greenish colour which was almost a hallmark for many Nikkor lenses that applied with NIC lens coating between mid '70 and early '80.

Many Ai-S lenses have a deep pinkish tint in their front lens element which you can also use it as a visual guide to differenciate the lens types. Optically, this lens is incredibly sharp and need no further detail illustartions. I used to own this version during late of the '70. Pictured above with the Nikon F2A attached is an early version of the AI lens.

M. J. Martin 105mm f2.5,jpg
A standard packaging for Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 AI lens comprised of a HS-8 lens hood, a lens cap each for front and back. The metal lens hood is a standard accessory. The same lens hood was also being supplied as a standard accessory for the Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8 introduced later. The picture shown at left has a striking gold colour is a standard Nikon lens box for non-US market. I am not so sure back at the '80 dos the lens shares a common packaging.

: Image for the Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 AI lens courtesy of Mr. M. J. Martin,<> Copyright © 2001, All Rights Reserved.

As a general buying guide, buy a used lens. I don't actually think quality issue is the subject matter here but rather, I would advised you use secondary factors such as calling price, versions and condition of the lens that you intend to acquire to decide.

Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 Ai telelphoto lens

Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 Ai telelphoto lens

Credit: Images of this early-Ai Nikko 105mm f2.5 Ai telephoto lens coutesy of: Russell Gough® <>" All images appeared herein are Copyright © 2003. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.


Focal length/Aperture: 105mm f/2.5
Lens construction:
5 elements in 4 groups; Picture angle: 23°20'


HS-8 Hood.jpg

Diaphragm: Automatic; Weight: 435g
Aperture scale: f/2 5 ~ f/22 on both standard and aperture-direct-readout scale
Exposure measurement:
Via full aperture method; meter coupling ridge provided for Al cameras and meter coupling shoe for non-AI cameras

<<< --- PDF File (63k)

Distance scale:
Graduated in meters and feet from 1 m (3.5 ft) to infinity (
66mm dia. x 78mm long (overall); 68.5mm extension from flange
Attachment size:
52mm (P = 0.75); Front lens cap: Snap-On; Lens hood: Snap-On (HS-8)
Lens case:
CL-32S; No. 62; CP-2;
* Production Serial Numbers believed to have started from 740001for the AI lens version with HS-8 hood.

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MF Nikkor Lenses at 105mm focal length : Early non-AI versions | Pre-AI Versions | AI Nikkor105mm f/2.5 | Ai-S Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 | Nikkor105mm f/4.0 UV | Nikkor105mm f/1.8 AI & Ai-S | Relative: Bellows-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0; Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0s; Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8s, Nikkor 105mm f/4.5 UV

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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: 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.