Nikon’s 105mm f/2.8 G AF-S VR IF ED can be used with Nikon’s complete range of D-SLRs, including full-frame (FX) models like the D700 and D3X as well as APS-C (DX) models like the D3100, D5100 and D7000. Attached to a DX-format D7000 for our test, there’s a 1.5x crop factor to remember, so the lens actually provides a 35mm focal length equivalent of 157.5mm.
Not only is it a large optic, it works out at 120g heavier than Canon’s 100mm macro, weighing in at a mighty 720g. It’s unique in that it’s the only lens to incorporate optical image stabilisation with Nikon’s Vibration Reduction (VR II) function offering the equivalent stability of a shutter speed that’s four stops faster.
There’s a Silent Wave Motor (SWM) for quick and silent focusing, and the internal construction is made up of 14 elements in 12 groups, with one Extra Dispersion (ED) element to reduce the effects of chromatic aberration. The AF/MF and VR switches are partnered by another switch to limit minimum focus distance to 50cm (1:3) and the focus distance window on top of the barrel clearly indicates focusing distance in feet (ft) and metres (m).
The focus ring grips well and has a fluid motion over 3/4 of a turn. AF performance was whisper quiet and incredibly fast thanks to its internal focusing system. The build quality is also superb and can’t be faulted at all.
- Street price: £659
- Weight: 720g
- Mount: F
- Visit: www.nikon.co.uk
This review was first published in the October 2011 issue of Digital Photo - download back issues here.