Nikon has launched the much-rumored AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/4G ED VR, a lighter and more affordable tele-zoom with a claimed 5 stops of image stabilization. This is delivered by what the company terms 'third-generation VR,' which we're told is not a successor to VRII. The lens joins Nikon's range of constant f/4 lenses, alongside the 16-35mm f/4 and 24-120mm f/4, and includes both nano crystal coating and a ring-type AF-S motor to give full-time manual focus override. At $1400 the lens is priced relatively closely to the Canon equivalent's list price - as is the $224 optional tripod ring.

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Press Release:

NIKON CONTINUES POPULAR SERIES OF F/4 LENSES WITH THE ADDITION OF THE NEW FX-FORMAT AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR TELEPHOTO ZOOM LENS

The AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR Telephoto Zoom Lens is Nikon's First Lens with up to Five Stops of Image Stabilization; Offers Outstanding Performance and Superior Image Quality

MELVILLE, N.Y. (October 24, 2012) – Today, Nikon Inc. announced the newest addition to its legendary NIKKOR line of lenses, the AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR telephoto zoom lens that provides a popular and versatile focal length and a constant f/4 aperture for full frame FX-format photographers. The 70-200mm f/4 is the first NIKKOR lens to feature the third generation of Nikon's Vibration Reduction (VR) technology to meet the still image and video demands of advanced photographers and videographers.

"With the new AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4, Nikon offers enthusiasts an essential telephoto zoom lens capable of amazing clarity and control, at a price point that's easily attainable," said Bo Kajiwara, Vice President of Marketing, Planning and Customer Experience, Nikon Inc., "With the introduction of Nikon's third generation of VR technology, the AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4 lens offers superior performance and stunning image quality whether shooting beautiful stills or HD video in challenging lighting conditions."

Legendary Image Quality and Performance

In an expansion of Nikon's f/4 series of NIKKOR lenses, the AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4 is an uncompromising telephoto zoom lens ready for real-world creative applications by professionals and enthusiasts including sports, portraiture and wildlife shooting. Smaller and lighter than Nikon's AF-S NIKKOR 70-200 f/2.8 lens, this 70-200mm f/4 lens offers a valuable alternative that maintains the superior image quality and lightning quick performance photographers have come to expect from Nikon.

Additionally, Nikon's newest lens is the first to feature VR image stabilization technology that is able to vastly reduce camera shake and blur by offering the equivalent shutter speed of approximately five stops slower than otherwise possible. Now users are able to shoot confidently in lower light or while handheld to deliver razor sharp images and smooth HD video.

When used alongside the Nikon D4, D800 series and D600 D-SLR cameras, 70-200mm f/4 lens users can take advantage of Nikon professional grade teleconverters to increase the focal length without sacrificing AF and VR abilities. By utilizing the camera's cross-type focus points at f/8 and below, users can effectively double the focal length of this f/4 lens to 400mm and still retain the AF ability to capture clear subjects at an even greater distance.

Constructed from 20 optical elements in 14 groups, the AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4 maintains several core Nikon technologies including the exclusive Nano Crystal Coat to significantly reduce instances of ghosting and flaring. In addition, Nikon's Silent Wave Motor (SWM) provides quiet and responsive autofocus (AF) operation. The lens also features two versatile focus modes, M/A (autofocus with manual override) and M (manual focus) to adapt to a users shooting preferences. The AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4 achieves the top class feel, superior operability and solid handling that only NIKKOR glass can offer.

Price and Availability

The AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR will be available in late November 2012 for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $1,399.95*. Nikon also offers an optional Tripod Collar, available in the near future for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $223.95*. For more information on this and other NIKKOR lenses, as well as other Nikon products, please visit www.nikonusa.com.

*SRP (Suggested Retail Price) listed only as a suggestion. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time. Specifications, equipment and release dates are subject to change without any notice or obligation on the part of the manufacturer.

AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm F4G ED VR specifications

Principal specifications
Lens typeZoom lens
Max Format size35mm FF
Focal length70–200 mm
Image stabilisationYes (VR, 5 stops)
Lens mountNikon F (FX)
Aperture
Maximum apertureF4.0
Minimum apertureF32.0
Aperture ringNo
Number of diaphragm blades9
Aperture notesRounded diaphragm
Optics
Elements20
Groups14
Special elements / coatings3 ED lens elements, 1 HRI lens element
Focus
Minimum focus1.00 m (39.37)
Maximum magnification0.27×
AutofocusYes
Motor typeRing-type ultrasonic
Full time manualYes
Focus methodInternal
Distance scaleYes
DoF scaleNo
Physical
Weight850 g (1.87 lb)
Diameter78 mm (3.07)
Length179 mm (7.05)
SealingNo
ColourBlack
Zoom methodRotary (internal)
Filter thread67 mm
Hood suppliedYes
Optional accessoriesOptional RT-1 tripod collar