600PF??

Started Feb 2, 2019 | Discussions
Paddler213 Contributing Member • Posts: 788
600PF??
1

So, with all the hype about the 500PF, I was going to put my name on the waiting list for one. I already own the 500FL, but the PF version would be a big help for shooting from my canoe, in a layout blind, etc. I met up with an NPS member today to lay hands on his 500PF. He had it on a D5, so it was quite back heavy. But I liked the weight and it's clear that it would be better in tough conditions than the 500FL. When I told him I intended to stop on my way home and order one, he told me he had it on good authority that Nikon would be releasing the 600PF this summer. Such a lens would make a lot more sense for me given I already own the 500FL. Anybody have any info on this new lens?

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chambeshi Senior Member • Posts: 2,519
Re: 600PF??
1

Read nothing besides what was posted early last year on NR wrt to the Nikon patents: for 400, 500 and 600.

https://nikonrumors.com/2018/02/01/the-latest-nikon-patents-400mm-500mm-and-600mm-f-5-6-phase-fresnel-pf-lenses.aspx/

The 500 PF is all and more that's being written about it in the reviews. I still argue, however, that a 400 f4E PF of about 220mm by 110mm will be far more versatile in haptics and TCF (Teleconverter Factor: ie T3C0.5 versus TC1C -0.75 for a 5.6 telephoto] as it will work with all 3 Nikon TCs out a 800 f8, and a useful reach of 560 f5.6 with TC14. These stats apply to the triumvirate of Nikon DSLRs best suited to wildlife and action genres. Note my testing the Z7 with the 500 PF + TC2 does gives AF at f11 - but this rig struggles.

The 400 f4 PF should weigh less than a 600 f5.6, and be easier to handhold with similar proportions to a 200 f2G but it should weigh 2kg at most (guesstimate!)

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shuncheung Senior Member • Posts: 1,767
Re: 600PF??
2

Paddler213 wrote:

When I told him I intended to stop on my way home and order one, he told me he had it on good authority that Nikon would be releasing the 600PF this summer. Such a lens would make a lot more sense for me given I already own the 500FL. Anybody have any info on this new lens?

First of all, I have absolutely no Nikon insider information about up-coming F-mount lenses, but given that there is clearly high demand on the 500mm PF, I kind of doubt that Nikon will introduce a 600mm PF on top of it. A lot of the potential customers for the 600 must already have the 500. Very few people would need, and are willing to pay for, both.

Typically it is fruitless to speculate on what Nikon will introduce in the future (unless Nikon supplies a future road map, as in the case of the Z lenses). Since 2010 or so there were endless speculations for a D400 for years and nothing happened, and when people had given up on that idea, a D500 popped up all of a sudden in 2016. If that person claims to have insider info, you should ask for his/her source and judge for yourself how reliable that info is.

Additionally, a 500mm PF is going to be easier to hand hold than a 600. Any 600mm f5.6 lens will have a 107mm front element; it is going to be quite a bit bigger than the 89mm front for a 500mm f5.6 lens. 600mm has more magnification and it is going to be harder to follow any moving target such as birds in flight with a 600mm without a tripod and gimbal head.

Finally, I think Nikon's future emphasis will be Z-mount lenses. I wouldn't expect them to introduce very many F-mount lenses in the future any more. I bought my first Nikon lens way back in 1977, some 42 years ago, and I think I may have purchased my last F-mount lens, which happens to be the 500mm/f5.6 PF.

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Geomaticsman Senior Member • Posts: 2,880
Re: 600PF??

Interesting, though I have to say I’d be shocked if Nikon released a 600PF anytime soon. They’ve got their hands full trying to produce the 500PF — not sure if a 600PF would create more challenges or help by taking some of the pressure off the 500PF production line, but regardess I would expect Nikon are completely focused on Z-mount lens production right now so I just don’t see a 600PF in the cards. But who really knows?

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Gary prefers Nikon

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ARClark
ARClark Veteran Member • Posts: 4,006
Put me on the waiting list! 😄
1

Paddler213 wrote:

So, with all the hype about the 500PF, I was going to put my name on the waiting list for one. I already own the 500FL, but the PF version would be a big help for shooting from my canoe, in a layout blind, etc. I met up with an NPS member today to lay hands on his 500PF. He had it on a D5, so it was quite back heavy. But I liked the weight and it's clear that it would be better in tough conditions than the 500FL. When I told him I intended to stop on my way home and order one, he told me he had it on good authority that Nikon would be releasing the 600PF this summer. Such a lens would make a lot more sense for me given I already own the 500FL. Anybody have any info on this new lens?

Don’t know anything about potential availability, but I’d be very interested!  Already have 200-500 and an old 500 f4. Passing on the 500 PF, at least for now.  Need more reach!  Not holding my breath, though, that Nikon will offer a 600 f5.6. And if they do, no telling how long it would take to get hold of one!

Alan

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chambeshi Senior Member • Posts: 2,519
Re: Put me on the waiting list! 😄
1

https://nikonrumors.com/2019/01/29/where-is-the-nikon-af-s-nikkor-500mm-f-5-6e-pf-ed-vr-lens.aspx/

"....Update: coincidentally a new batch of the 500mm f/5.6 lenses just started shipping in the US two days ago.

  • The lens is fully hand-assembled (“hand-made”) and because the China factory producing them has only a limited number of staff with the necessary training and/or skill to produce them.
  • The Phase Fresnel element is “tricky and time-consuming” to produce, consequently, this is the bottleneck in the process.
  • Nikon is experiencing production delays due to inconsistencies in the glass used to make the lens elements. Evidently, the glass problems are affecting several other lenses produced in China as well but I don't know exactly which ones. No timetable was given as to when the issue would be resolved. Supposedly they were talks about sourcing glass from the Sendai plant and assembling the lens in China or even moving production to the Sendai plant.

Read more: https://nikonrumors.com/2019/01/29/where-is-the-nikon-af-s-nikkor-500mm-f-5-6e-pf-ed-vr-lens.aspx/#ixzz5eOOpzJZ2"

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shuncheung Senior Member • Posts: 1,767
Re: 600 PF??
1

chambeshi wrote:

https://nikonrumors.com/2019/01/29/where-is-the-nikon-af-s-nikkor-500mm-f-5-6e-pf-ed-vr-lens.aspx/

"....Update: coincidentally a new batch of the 500mm f/5.6 lenses just started shipping in the US two days ago.

  • The lens is fully hand-assembled (“hand-made”) and because the China factory producing them has only a limited number of staff with the necessary training and/or skill to produce them.
  • The Phase Fresnel element is “tricky and time-consuming” to produce, consequently, this is the bottleneck in the process.
  • Nikon is experiencing production delays due to inconsistencies in the glass used to make the lens elements. Evidently, the glass problems are affecting several other lenses produced in China as well but I don't know exactly which ones. No timetable was given as to when the issue would be resolved. Supposedly they were talks about sourcing glass from the Sendai plant and assembling the lens in China or even moving production to the Sendai plant.

Read more: https://nikonrumors.com/2019/01/29/where-is-the-nikon-af-s-nikkor-500mm-f-5-6e-pf-ed-vr-lens.aspx/#ixzz5eOOpzJZ2"

chambeshi, no offense, but I would take whatever posted to Nikon Rumors with a grain of salt. In particular, before those bullet points your quoted, they specify:

"Here are the possible reasons I received from sources on why this lens is still not available"

Those are merely "possible reasons" and who knows what their sources are and how reliable they may be.

Back in December, when we were talking about the 500mm PF, a Nikon rep in California did tell me that it takes 7 months to manufacture that PF element, and that is why delivery has been slow. I have no idea whether he might have exaggerated a bit or not.

Any PF element for a possible 600mm PF is going to be larger and even more difficult to manufacture. But as I mentioned in my earlier post, I think a 600mm PF will be difficult to hand hold and Nikon's emphasis is shifting to the Z mount. What is holding up Nikon's Z system is the selection of native Z-mount lenses. Sony has a head start and now Canon, Panasonic and Nikon are racing to catch up. Nikon simply cannot afford to fall behind.

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Doug Greenberg Contributing Member • Posts: 631
Re: Put me on the waiting list! 😄
2

Peter from Nikon Rumors does not always have it right, but his record is remarkably good overall. Certainly something is delaying the completion and shipment of 500mm 5.6 PF lenses, and the complications of the manufacturing process are a likely culprit.

That said, I have no scientific evidence to offer, but based on informal "buzz," there is more consumer interest in a 600mm f5.6 PF than in a 400mm f4 PF. There are all kinds of ways to get to 400mm in a lightweight package these days, and at the same time, the allure of 600mm as an ideal focal length for bird photography remains strong. The size difference between a 600mm f5.6 PF and a 600mm f4 will undoubtedly be considerable. Even if a 600 f5.6 is not ideally hand-holdable, it will be smaller, lighter, more transportable, and immanently more practical for say, traveling bird photographers than is a 600mm f4. And the price will be lower, it is safe to say. The loss of the f stop is not unimportant, both in terms of those extra opportunities in low light and the ability to isolate targets against a blurred background. But let's face it: we operate comfortably at much higher ISO levels than we did even a few years ago. Provided that autofocus is adequately fast and accurate, an f5.6 supertele is quite attractive, and at 850mm f8 (with a 1.4x telextender) the lens would remain quite usable.

That said, I think it will be a few years before 1) the lens is even announced; and 2) the manufacturing process for this type of lens is up to speed so the inevitable high demand can be met. But hey, if they are taking orders years in advance, count me in!

Doug Greenberg, Berkeley, CA

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User0911929551 New Member • Posts: 1
Re: 600PF??
1

Assuming that a 600mm PF is released this summer, the real question is when you would be able to buy one.  I have had an order in for a 500mm PF since August 27, 2018 (about 5 days after the lens was announced) at B&H, and they have no idea when they will be able to fulfill their backorders.  Apparently Nikon is having difficulties producing these lenses, particularly the Fresnel lens.  Given the difficulties Nikon has had  manufacturing the 500mm PF, the expectation of a 600mm PF this summer seems a bridge too far.

Nikon owes all of their customers who have been waiting for months for this lens an explanation as to:  (1) why shipments have been delayed, and (2) when they anticipate producing adequate numbers of these lenses to fulfill customer commitments.  Nikon's explanation that there is high demand for these lenses doesn't begin to approach a satisfactory answer.

chambeshi Senior Member • Posts: 2,519
Re: 600 PF??
1

shuncheung wrote:

chambeshi wrote:

https://nikonrumors.com/2019/01/29/where-is-the-nikon-af-s-nikkor-500mm-f-5-6e-pf-ed-vr-lens.aspx/

"....Update: coincidentally a new batch of the 500mm f/5.6 lenses just started shipping in the US two days ago.

  • The lens is fully hand-assembled (“hand-made”) and because the China factory producing them has only a limited number of staff with the necessary training and/or skill to produce them.
  • The Phase Fresnel element is “tricky and time-consuming” to produce, consequently, this is the bottleneck in the process.
  • Nikon is experiencing production delays due to inconsistencies in the glass used to make the lens elements. Evidently, the glass problems are affecting several other lenses produced in China as well but I don't know exactly which ones. No timetable was given as to when the issue would be resolved. Supposedly they were talks about sourcing glass from the Sendai plant and assembling the lens in China or even moving production to the Sendai plant.

Read more: https://nikonrumors.com/2019/01/29/where-is-the-nikon-af-s-nikkor-500mm-f-5-6e-pf-ed-vr-lens.aspx/#ixzz5eOOpzJZ2"

chambeshi, no offense,

No problem...

but I would take whatever posted to Nikon Rumors with a grain of salt. In particular, before those bullet points your quoted, they specify:

Yes I hear you. The appellation of "Rumors" speaks for itself. but Peter gets a great deal correct I also appreciate the feed for new accessories and discounts etc

There must be some light ie explication in the smoke...perhaps Nikon did indeed underestimate demand for a 500 PF, which has attracted widespread interest.

Nevertheless, it's also a bit strange to see the lapse in registering the patent early 2018, and 500 mid 2018 (since 2015 release of the successful 300 PF) . Challenges in mass producing the PF element are the likely reason. This might include precision assembly including calibration and testing etc. Who knows, it's all speculation.

Speaking form nearly 4 months experience with the first 500 PF landed in S Africa, this telephoto is well worth the expenditure - in fact, all considered with haptics and IQ it is a bargain at the price. I say this shooting it alongside the 200 f2G and 400 f2.8E FL

"Here are the possible reasons I received from sources on why this lens is still not available"

Those are merely "possible reasons" and who knows what their sources are and how reliable they may be.

Yes, Rumours

Back in December, when we were talking about the 500mm PF, a Nikon rep in California did tell me that it takes 7 months to manufacture that PF element, and that is why delivery has been slow. I have no idea whether he might have exaggerated a bit or not.

Phew! Hard to believe but if it is true....

Any PF element for a possible 600mm PF is going to be larger and even more difficult to manufacture. But as I mentioned in my earlier post, I think a 600mm PF will be difficult to hand hold and Nikon's emphasis is shifting to the Z mount. What is holding up Nikon's Z system is the selection of native Z-mount lenses. Sony has a head start and now Canon, Panasonic and Nikon are racing to catch up. Nikon simply cannot afford to fall behind.

This interview gives some insights into the R&D behind the 300 PF, and the trade offs:

".... Hayakawa: As you said, the body will inevitably grow and become expensive if it is over 400 mm, so we first considered the focal length that makes the best use of the merits of miniaturization. PF lenses can be expected to have some miniaturization effect in any focal range, but lenses of wide angle and standard range do not give much effect as dimensions even if the ratio of miniaturization is the same.

So first I thought about adopting with a telephoto lens. Among them, I thought that if the specification of 300 mm F 4 is specified, the merit of miniaturization is great, and we can realize the price that we can pick up for general customers as well."

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lickity split
lickity split Veteran Member • Posts: 6,042
Re: 600PF??

Paddler213 wrote:

So, with all the hype about the 500PF, I was going to put my name on the waiting list for one. I already own the 500FL, but the PF version would be a big help for shooting from my canoe, in a layout blind, etc. I met up with an NPS member today to lay hands on his 500PF. He had it on a D5, so it was quite back heavy. But I liked the weight and it's clear that it would be better in tough conditions than the 500FL. When I told him I intended to stop on my way home and order one, he told me he had it on good authority that Nikon would be releasing the 600PF this summer. Such a lens would make a lot more sense for me given I already own the 500FL. Anybody have any info on this new lens?

I seriously doubt such an announcement will be made for a summer release simply because Nikon can’t even fill orders for 500pf ..

im sure some folks waiting on the 500 order to be filled will switch to the 600pf

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Jim Scarff Regular Member • Posts: 337
Ahhh, waiting lists!

Doug,
This video is like a video adaptation of the saga/book of your wait for the Nikon PF500.  I hope the FedEx truck comes to your door soon.
(waiting for camera gear)
Jim

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OP Paddler213 Contributing Member • Posts: 788
Re: 600PF??

So, the guy O talked to yesterday said he knows a dealer who has a pre-production, unmarked 600PF.  Wonder when or if it will hit the market.  I'll be shooting my 500/4E for a while.

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briantilley
briantilley Veteran Member • Posts: 5,069
Re: 600PF??

Paddler213 wrote:

So, the guy O talked to yesterday said he knows a dealer who has a pre-production, unmarked 600PF.

Or, he may just be shooting you a line

Wonder when or if it will hit the market. I'll be shooting my 500/4E for a while.

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lickity split
lickity split Veteran Member • Posts: 6,042
Re: 600PF??
1

Paddler213 wrote:

So, the guy O talked to yesterday said he knows a dealer who has a pre-production, unmarked 600PF. Wonder when or if it will hit the market. I'll be shooting my 500/4E for a while.

I really don’t think Nikon would ship a pre-production model to a dealer and have it sit around his shop it would most likely be sent to a Ambassador who’s on the Nikon payroll for testing , don’t you think ?

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Leonard Shepherd
Leonard Shepherd Forum Pro • Posts: 20,340
Re: 600PF??

A 400mm lens to be f4 requires at least a 100mm front element.

A 600mm f5.6 requires at least 107mm.

There are significant manufacturing cost and weight issues to consider.

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Leonard Shepherd
In lots of ways good photography is much more about how equipment is used rather than the equipment being used.

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Doug Greenberg Contributing Member • Posts: 631
Re: Ahhh, waiting lists!
1

Jim Scarff wrote:

Doug,
This video is like a video adaptation of the saga/book of your wait for the Nikon PF500. I hope the FedEx truck comes to your door soon.
(waiting for camera gear)
Jim

Hey Jim! Hope all is well with you :-).f

Well, you know that I am not really hurting for bird photography optics, so my wait for the PF cannot constitute suffering, except as the quintessential example of a "First World Problem." The whole saga actually is part of the fun of the hobby, really. And to think, if and when a 600mm PF ever is released, I might be able to go through the whole thing again (given how this technology is going, I might be dead and gone or in a nursing home by that time, unfortunately).

Doug

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OP Paddler213 Contributing Member • Posts: 788
Re: Ahhh, waiting lists!

Really imaginative video.  I imagine many waiting for the 500PF can relate.

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kayaker353 Senior Member • Posts: 1,133
Re: 600PF??

If a 600PF is announced, I will pre-order instantly and ask questions later.  I have the 80 to 400 and don't think 500 mm offers enough gain.  600 would offer a 50% increase in image size, while a 500mm offers 25%.  The practical questions regarding a 600PF would be answered while waiting in queue.  I hope they move on this soon, or announce that they are cancelling their earlier announcement that they are developing such a lens.  It was pre-announced before the 500PF.

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shuncheung Senior Member • Posts: 1,767
Re: 600PF??
2

kayaker353 wrote:

I hope they move on this soon, or announce that they are cancelling their earlier announcement that they are developing such a lens. It was pre-announced before the 500PF.

That was not the case. Nikon has never (pre) announced any intention to produce any 600mm/f5.6 PF lens. All Nikon has are patents for the design of three f5.6 PF lenses: 400mm, 500mm, and 600mm.

On June 14, 2018, Nikon announced the development of the 500mm/f5.6 PF, i.e. a pre-announcement: https://www.nikon.com/news/2018/0614_lens_01.htm

Typically such pre-announcement is followed by the formal product introduction with detail specs and pricing within 2, 3 months. And the formal announcement was on August 23, 2018, along with the mirrorless Z system: https://www.nikon.com/news/2018/0823_nikkor-f_01.htm

In other words, it was a bit over 2 months from pre-announcement to actual announcement.

Other than the Nikon 300mm/f4 PF and 500mm/f5.6 PF, all other Nikon PF lenses are merely rumors and speculations. And of course, prior to June 14, 2018, the  rumor sites were predicting a 600mm/f5.6 PF instead of the actual 500mm.

Finally, Nikon tends to file a lot of patents. Only a fraction of those turns into actual products.

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