Nikon patent on 200-500 f/4-5.6: your take on price and use?

Started Jan 14, 2011 | Discussions thread
JC1306
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Re: Nikon patent on 200-500 f/4-5.6: your take on price and use?
In reply to Ilkka Nissilä, Jan 15, 2011

Ilkka Nissilä wrote:

JC1306 wrote:

I doubt that,given that Canons 100-400 f4.5-5.6 IS goes for $1600-1700. I'd expect an initial price of $2500-2700 which later drops to $2300 or so.

If it's a consumer quality lens then yes, that would be an appropriate price. But few consumers are going to lug around a lens that most likely weights 2.5kg if constructed properly, perhaps more. So sales volumes will necessarily be limited to those who are very serious about what they're doing, and the f/5.6 will cut the numbers further down among action shooters, as AF works better with faster lenses;

Given the fact that up to now all "pro" Nikkors have constant aperture, I'm fully expecting a 200-500 to be prosumer-grade at most. That doesn't mean that it can't be excellent optically but I wouldn't expect a very robust construction or weathersealing. Besides, if I'm correct with my price estimate this lens won't be for the average consumer anyway, anything costing over $1K is well into "think about it carefully"-territory. In other words, people buying it won't do so on a whim.

And I'm afraid that faster lenses won't do much for the AF, most sensors are f/5.6 themselves so a larger aperture lens won't improve speed or accuracy much. And apart from shallow DOF, a larger aperture is becoming less and less necessary. The newest cameras are becoming so good at high ISO values that you can just bump up the ISO instead of opening the aperture.

IF Nikon brings out a 200-500 f4-5.6 and IF it's decent optically and IF it focuses fast enough and IF it's remotely affordable then it'll sell well. But that's a lot of ifs, let's see what Nikon comes up with.

Jarno
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Photos at http://jarno.smugmug.com

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