Ai Nikkor18mm f/4.0 Ultra-Wideangle Lens
Covers a panoramic 100° area with edge-to-edge sharpness. Weighing just 325g (11.5 oz.); its compact construction makes it a welcome addition to any Nikon or Nikkormat system during the seventies. The lens shown below was an exact replica of the non-Ai lens which also shared similar optical formula. The lens relatively slow maximum aperture at f/4.0 provides only a fair rating especially relates to focusing and picture composing in dim light. However, good selection of a brighter focusing screen type (or in the case of other Nikon SLRs, use plain screen type) may offset slightly with this negative aspect presents by this lens. Another area where most Nikon users like to picked on this lens is its lack of the close range correction system in its rather complex 13-element optical design. But the lens is still capable of providing remarkably good, even illumination right to the edges across its entire aperture settings, even at its maximum aperture.
The optical nature of this lens that presents an extremely wide field coverage, extensive depth-of-field, and freedom from distortion has enabled it to be used as an excellent choice for architectural, scenic photography as well as picture taking in cramped quarters.
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An accessory lens hood (supplied with the lens) is tailored specifically for this lens to use. The lens hood also serves as a retaining ring for Series 9 filters. There are two versions of this lens that look quite identical in their physical appearance although optically, both version share similar optical design. Earlier version may has the lens data engraved at the front of the rim while at later stage, it has been imprinted on the outside of the metal front rim. I know it can be very tempting as usually used optics are usually cheaper than new, but If you are shopping for such a lens on the used market; always go for the Ai-version for better compatibility with Nikon Ai SLR bodies that introduced at later stages. Naturally, that may translate into some premium for the Ai spec optic over the Non-Ai versions.
Note: lens weighs 325g. It was supplied with standard accessories which includes a 86mm (attachment size: P=1) screw in lens hood and also a screw-in front lens cap. The lens accepts Nikon Series 9 filters. A copy of its optical construction can be downloaded at the NON-Ai counterpart section.
Nikkor 18mm f/4.0 Non-Ai & Pre Ai | Nikkor Ai 18mm f/4.0 | Nikkor Ai & Ai-S f/3.5 |
NOTE: Serial Number was believed to have been started with 190001 for this Ai version. Also please note the f/3.5 lens also has both Ai and Ai-S versions.
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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
Recommended Reading Reference on Nikon cameras and Nikkor lenses | about this photographic web site
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Co-developed with my web buddy, Rick Oleson® & Denmark, Creator of the Nikon Repair Group Mailing-List; A contributing effort to Michael Liu's Classic Nikon SLRs and Nikkor optic site.
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.