NEX-5n + Nikon Series E 100mm f2.8

Started Mar 4, 2012 | Discussions thread
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MiWo
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NEX-5n + Nikon Series E 100mm f2.8
Mar 4, 2012

Hi All,

For all interested in a reasonably fast mid tele prime for the NEX I wanted to share some impressions of Nikon's Series E 100mm f2.8 lens.

People who came across Nikon's DSLRs probably know their Series E was a budget lens line back in the days. They're mostly very simple designs with almost no coatings built to lesser standards than normal Nikkors. This lead however to a big advantage, especially true with mirrorless cameras - they're small and light.

The 100mm is moreless the size of Sony's kit lens and weights 200g. You need to add an adapter however which adds some bulk...

The lens is also cheap. I've got mine for around 80$ and my home country of Poland definitely isn't the cheapest place to buy lenses

And now the most important thing - IQ. I haven't made lab tests, but during field use, I found the lens to be quite sharp at 2.8 already and getting better until f8 where it's pretty much perfect (as to my standards - being not a pro). I didn't notice any vignetting on the NEX. At f4 the whole frame is evenly lit. The bokeh is not buttery smooth, but I find it to be quite pleasing as long as there's not much strong light in the background. Counterlight is generally the biggest issue. Flair is quite pronounced with big purple spots when the sun is in the frame or just outside of it. In this cases the lens loses also contrast and it loses big time. Stopping down helps only slightly. To round out the picture - CAs are not as big a deal but they're there. A shade should help as holding your hand up does already wonders.

All in all I think for the size and price the lens is great, as long as the sun has got your back, literally!

A couple of examples to proof my point. Taken in RAW and processed in LR - cropping and resizing mostly.

Best,
Mike

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