Additional Information on
Pre-AI version of the Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0

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Pre-Ai version of the Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0

By the mid of the seventies, the Nikkor lens family have FOUR specialized lenses that offered close focus capability and among them, only the short focal length 55mm f/3.5 Micro-Nikkor-P Auto lens was considered as true working macro lens; while both the
Bellows-Nikkor-P 105mm f/4.0 and Bellows-Nikkor-Q 135 mm f/4.0 Preset was more specific for bellow attachment use becuase it has no focusing mechanism and Medical-Nikkor was far too tedious to setup and use for general assignments. So, in an attempt to satisfy photographers request who were looking for a working telephoto lens which provides similar close focusing capability and performance as the proven Micro-Nikkor-P 55mm f/3.5 Auto, Nikon released the Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0 in November, 1975. It was the first Tele-Macro Nikkor lens which provides a comfortable working distance while its longer focal length also ensure a more natural perspective in relation to close up details for nature, indoor studio shootings and/or situations where artificial illumination such as close-up flash photography is required. Reproduction ratio of 1:2 at its closest focusing distance at 0.47m (1.55 ft) making it a good lens for covering a wide varieties of photographic applications.

Credit: Image of the Ai Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0 lens was downloaded from Roland Wink site. The original image can be accessed via here.

NOTE:- Refer to the Rangefinder Nikkor lenses section for more info
Together with the revised design of the Micro-Nikkor 55mm f/3.5 introduced around this same Pre-Ai period, this lens was born with a modern Nikkor lens appearance where rubber-covered focusing ring and a diamond-ridged aperture ring was used. The minimum aperture of the lens can be stopped down to f/32, an important element in handling high magnification works and for extended range of depth of field control in many other photographic applications. Similarly, it has excellent colored indicators for depth of field engraved in scales, numeric and with various reproduction ratios settings when the lens is used singularly or when the the dedicated Auto Ring PN-1 is used together. The overall built quality is top rated but it was in the optical aspect that the lens truly shines as a classic.

Along with the introduction of this Tele-Macro lens, Nikon also released a companion Auto Extension Tube PN-1 to enable the lens reach a higher magnification ratio of 1X (1:1 life size reproduction). With the PN-1 attached, the lens balances very well as the Extension Ring has a considerate tripod mount at its base, so when the Micro-Nikkor lens is mounted with the camera, the weight distribution is excellent.

Credit: Image of the Ai Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0 lens was downloaded from Roland Wink site. The original image can be accessed via here.
This version of the lens was practically given a direct update with an Ai lens coupling system in 1977. Both versions have similar design and optical composition. The PN-1 was also updated as an Ai-Spec and renamed as PN-11. In fact, many of these Non-Ai lenses have been modified with Ai and it is rather hard to differentiate them unless you are well verse with their rear mount or perhaps using the serial number (Those with S/N that began with 174011 onwards ar Non-Ai version while the Ai lens is started from 186956) is still by far the most reliable way to distinguish the changes. Anyway, unless you want to use this as a bargaining tool for reduction of price, but since there are not significantly affect compatibility with most Nikon SLRs that introduced at later stage, it is still safe to use these lenses even if they have been converted into an Ai lens specification.
<<< -- Dimension of the non-Ai 55mm f/3.5 Micro-Nikkor mounted with PK-3 compared to a non-Ai Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0 lens mounted with a PN-1 auto Extension Ring. Pictured was scanned from a Nikon sales leaflet published in 1976.

The technical specification of this version was similar to the next version in Ai-Spec which you can use it as a reading reference.

microscale.jpg microcolorcscale.jpg   microapertring.jpg


Focal length: 105mm
Maximum aperture: 1:4.0
Lens construction: 5 elements in 3 groups
Aperture Scale: f/4.0 ~ f/
32 aperture-direct-readout scale is not provided
Picture angle: 23° 20'
: Fully automatic
Lens Coating: Multicoated with NIC
Distance Scale:
Graduated in meters and feet from 0.47m (1.55 ft) to infinity); infrared index is provided.
Exposure Measurement: via full aperture method; meter coupling prong provided
Meter coupling prong: Integrated (fully open exposure metering)
Attachment size: 52mm (P=0.75mm)

Filters: 52mm Screw-in
Lens Mount: Nikon bayonet mount
Weight: 500g
74.5mm dia. x 104 (157)
*mm long (overall); 96 (149)* mm extension from flange
Attachment size: 52mm (P = 0.75)
Front lens cap:
Lens hood:
Built-in; External HS-8 recommended
Lens case:
CL-33S; No. 62. With PN-1: CL-35A; No. 63

* Represents the values when used with PN-1 Ring

Note: Serial number for this version of the 105mm Micro-Nikkor lens may have been started from 174011

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| Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8s | Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0s | Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0 | Non-Ai Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0 | Relative: Bellows-Nikkor 105mm f/4.0; UV-Nikkor 105mm f/4.5s, Nikkor Prime 105mm Telephoto lenses

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Others: Noct Nikkor | OP-Nikkor | UV Nikkor 55mm 105mm | Focusing Units | Bellows-Nikkor 105mm 135mm
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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.