Additional Information on
Nikkor 13mm Ultrawideangle lenses

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Nikkor 13 mm f/5.6 (Produce to Order Wideangle Nikkor Lens and has been discontinued)

The original version of this Nikkor superwide was first debuted back in December, 1975 as an Non-Ai Nikkor and pictured at left is an Ai-S version which was introduced in March, 1982. It has a similar version which carried an Ai lens coupling which was prior to the introduction of the Ai-S version. This lens holds the honor that has the widest picture coverage in 35mm photography, excluding the Fisheye-Nikkor lens group. In a practice usage, because the lens accentuates nearby objects by enlarging them and de-emphasize those that are far away by making them smaller. The objects therefore seem much farther apart than they really are, creating an elongated perspective.
Nikon 13mm f/5.6 Ultrawideangle lens by Photo Arsenal Woldwide
Credit: Image courtesy of Photo_Arsenal-Worldwide® Germany. The Company also maintains an active EBAY Store, trading many used and new photo equipment of various labels. Photo Aersenal can be contacted at Photo Arsenal Boris Jamchtchik, Altenfurter Str.16a 90475 Nuernberg Germany Tel.: +49 (0) 911/ 4008081 E-Mail: Arsenal has a office in Hong Kong, headed by Evan Wong. Address is: Ting Shan East Selling-Office Unit 210, 2/f., Mirror Tower, 61 Mody Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong Phone: + 852/23126690 , fax. +852/23126691.Image(s) copyright © 2008. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

UPDATE: Instruction Manual for Nikkor 13mm f/5.6 is available now.

Because of its extraordinary perspective generates, even a slight difference in shooting angle or position will cause a great difference in how the subject will appear. The large protruding front lens element which measures almost 110mm in diameter needs a lot of care and attention as this expensive optic does not use a front mounting filter as precautionary protection. In fact, there is only a built in scalloped lens shade which serves more to protect the front lens element rather than acting as an effective lens shade because of the sweeping picture coverage of the lens actually goes beyond 180 degrees ! A filter set was supplied with the lens as standard accessory, where there are 4 filters in a set (Skylight (L1BC), orange (O56), light amber (A2) and light blue (B2)* but surprisingly Polarizer filter is NOT inclusive with the package. The diagonal angle of view of this fabulous Nikkor ultrawide is an astonishing 118°. But its maximum aperture is a rather restrictive slow lens speed at f/5.6. The optical construction is a complex 16 elements in 12 groups arrangement. And in no way this is a lightweight lens because despite its relatively slow maximum aperture provides, this lens still weighs a massive 1.2kg !

Another noteworthy point is, this lens can focuses down to 1 foot. Nikon's Close Range Optical Correction (CRC) system was employed in its design so as to ensure its superlative image quality be extended at its closest focusing range - where most often, a popular way to make good use of this extreme wideangle lenses is to work in close to the subjects. The CRC system, in this case, ensures a
berrations at close focusing distances can be counter by the floating lens elements system.

Nikon never specifies whether the lens uses any aspherical lens elements in its optical design but based on the complexity of its optical design, it is highly unlikely. Unlike the comparing AF-S Nikkor 14mm f/2.8S ED lens and the Canon 14mm f/2.8 L which comes with two stops larger in maximum apertures - the two mentioned super-wides each has aspherical lens element(s) within in its design and resulted in a significantly reduction in weight and dimension while providing a much faster lens speed at f/2.8. With the introduction of the 14mm AF-Nikkor, Nikon photographers finally has a more realistically priced, and readily available Nikkor ultra-wideangle lens for their lens selection. The debut of the AF counterpart may also signify soon discontinuation of this Manual Focus Nikkor ultrawide.

Credit: Image downloaded from Nikon USA website. Image has been scaled and retouched for broadcasting.

"... Here's a representative Nikkor 13mm f/5.6 image. Taken with the F5, Kodachrome 25 (scanned and color channels dropped). Suggest it for your page on the 13mm Nikkor lens. This is not full frame,--some was cropped from both ends to fit the usual paper ratios. I'm the photographer, own the ©, and give you my permission to use it on your site.

Dan Lindsay
Santa Barbara, CA

<<< ---- Credit: Dan Lindsay <> copyright © 2004. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer(s).

13mmwideangle.jpg (26k) Loading.....
As there may not be too many of this lenses surface at used lenses market. Probably because it has never being a popular lens due to its earlier high price tag and limitation of applications although the scarcity may result in gradual appreciating of its collector's value. Optically, the Ai-S Nikkor 13mm lens version doesn't seem to have any significant physical differences (Except the lens couplings used and the rubberized focusing grip) nor improvement done optically as compared to earlier versions. So, IF you, by any chance own one of these rare piece of optical gem with respective era of introduction, please mail me with some pictures in order to beef up the content of this section of the site, where appropriate credit will be given for such effort.

* Early version of the 13mm lens was supplied with yellow, orange, red, plain glass filters.

Technical Highlights: * Sweeping 118° picture coverage. * Straight-line rendition of subjects without the barrel distortion common to fisheye lenses. *Superior Nikon lens technology eliminates light falloff and poor resolution in the frame corners typical of lenses with such wide coverage. * Nikon's Close-Range Correction System assures exceptional image sharpness even at the closest focusing distance of 0.3m (1 ft.). * Built-in scalloped lens hood minimizes flare when shooting against the light. * Supplied with a set of 4 filters (skylight, orange, light amber, and light blue) which bayonet onto the back of the lens and a hard leatherette lens case. * Convenient for single-shot "panoramas" of landscapes, architecture and interiors, plus extreme wideangle effects in advertising, commercial, and general photography.


Focal length/Aperture: 13mm f/5.6
Lens construction: 16 elements in 12 groups; Picture angle: 118°; Diaphragm: Automatic
Aperture scale: f/5.6~f/22 on both standard and aperture-direct-readout scales
Exposure measurement: Via full aperture method with AI cameras; via stop-down method with non-AI cameras.
Distance scale: Graduated in meters and feet from 0.3m (1 ft.) to infinity (
OO); Weight: 1,200g

Dimensions: 115mm dia. x 99mm long (overall); 88.5mm extension from lens flange;
Filters: Rear-attachment bayonet type; Skylight (LlBC). orange (O56), light amber (A2). and light blue (B2)
Front lens cap: slip-on Lens hood: Built-in scalloped type; Lens case: CL-14 hard leatherette
Usable teleconverter:
TC-200, TC-201, TC-14, TC-14A NOTE: Serial Number was believed to have been started with 175901 for the Ai-S version and 175021 for the earlier Ai version; This lens was originally available only by special order.

Early Versions : Pre-Ai 13mm f/5.6 | Late '70 (Ai) 13mm f/5.6 | Early '80 (Ai-S) 13mm f/5.6

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Tele-Converters: TC-1 | TC-2 | TC-200 | TC-201 | TC-300 | TC-301 | TC-14 | TC-14A | TC-14B | TC-14C | TC-14E | TC-16 | TC-16A | TC-20E

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.