Early thoughts on Nikon 70-200 f4

Started Dec 2, 2012 | Discussions thread
fabgo Senior Member • Posts: 1,300
Re: Early thoughts on Nikon 70-200 f4 - Blurry Edge

jhinkey wrote:

John wrote:


I bought a new D800 recently. (I have a D800e and D600 too) I noticed when shooting with it at the weekend that my shots were soft/blurry and smeary at the rightmost 20% of the image. I thought it was the lens that was de-centered at first. Tried 5 lenses on it yesterday - all of then exhibited the issue. I returned it today for another. New one is fine. I was told by the retailer that the sensor may be ever so slightly misaligned. Maybe worth getting your D800 checked mate.

Thanks John - I think you are right - I will send it in to Nikon for a check and adjustment.

- John

PS - Before I do that though, I think I will do some tripod tests with my 70-200/2.8VRII and see if this lens has that problem as well. If it does then I'll use live view to focus and see if the sharpness improves. If it does then it's the sensor.


I just got my 70-200/4 and have the same problem. Lens is soft on left side. It's actually a tilted focus field (e.g. the lens will front-focus on the left side). I think it's the lens. I have seen this before. My 85/1.8 has a similar issue, but top-to-bottom. And two 24-85/3.5-4.5 lenses I tried had it left-to-right.

I also suspected a sensor alignment problem with my D800 and sent it in to Nikon for service. They claimed the body was fine. Not fully convinced, I actually rented a 2nd D800 body and a 2nd 85/1.8 lens. Both showed the same problem, although the rented 85/1.8 seemed a little better - but it could be because it focused a little different.

My take on this is that it's a manufacturing error (or "tolerance") of the internal lens cams on which lens elements are fitted. I think the cams have slots on them on which the elements rest, for ease of placement, and these slots might not be completely aligned. This would explain why I can test multiple copies of the same lens and see the exact same issue.

I think it's pretty bad though on the 70-200/4. Not easy getting uniformly sharp pictures for landscape use with this lens @ infinity. I think I'm going to return mine and hope for a better copy.

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