A few months after announcing its development in June, today Nikon formally announced the compact Z-series 40mm f/2 lens and revealed its full specifications. The lens will go on sale “later this fall” according to Nikon, with a suggested retail price of $300.
Here are the lens’s full specifications:
- Mount Type: Nikon Z Mount
- Focal Length: 40mm
- Angle of View (DX): 57°
- Angle of View (FX): 39°
- Maximum Aperture: f/2
- Minimum Aperture: f/16
- Aperture Blades: 9
- Filter Size: 52mm
- Lens Elements: 6
- Lens Groups: 4
- Special Elements: 2 aspherical
- ARNEO Coating: No
- Nano Crystal Coating: No
- Super Integrated Coating: Yes
- Fluorine Coated Front Element: No
- Electronic Diaphragm: Yes
- Vibration Reduction: No
- Internal Focusing: Yes
- Control Rings: One (generally used for manual focus)
- Function Buttons: No
- Focus Motor: Stepping motor
- Minimum Focus Distance: 0.29 meters (0.95 feet)
- Maximum Magnification: 0.17× (1:5.9)
- Mount Material: Plastic
- Weather/Dust Sealing: Yes
- Dimensions (Length × Diameter): 46 × 70 mm / 1.8 × 2.8 inches
- Weight: 170 g / 0.37 lbs
- MSRP: $300
At 170 g (0.37 pounds), this is one of the lightest full-frame Nikon Z lenses yet. It keeps company with the Z 28mm f/2.8 (160 g) and Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 (195 g).
Compared to the existing Nikon Z 50mm f/1.8 S, the 40mm f/2 has some clear advantages and disadvantages. On the positive side, it is significantly less expensive at $300 versus $600 (though the 50mm occasionally goes on sale for $500). The 40mm f/2 also weighs much less at just 170 grams compared to 415 grams, and it’s far more compact – a similar diameter but roughly half the length. Further, in terms of light-gathering capabilities, the difference between f/2 and f/1.8 is only 1/3 of a stop. Here’s the lens’s construction diagram:
However, not everything about this comparison is in the 40mm f/2’s favor. It has lower-end construction than the Nikon Z 50mm f/1.8 S, with a plastic lens mount and no water-resistant fluorine coating on the front element. Optically, the 40mm f/2 doesn’t have as many bells and whistles. There’s no nano crystal coating or extra-low dispersion glass elements, and it has a simpler optical construction with 6 elements compared to 12. We won’t know how this translates to image quality until we test the lens in person, but it probably isn’t reasonable to expect this lens to outperform Nikon’s other Z-series primes. Here’s the MTF chart that Nikon supplies:
Of course, some compromises are necessary when designing pancake (or at least small) lenses, and the 40mm f/2 fills a much-needed slot in Nikon’s Z-series lineup. Almost all the Nikon Z lenses so far have been excellent in image quality, but they do sometimes sacrifice a bit of portability to get there. (An example goes back to the 50mm f/1.8 S – hardly a massive lens, but noticeably bigger and heavier than its F-mount counterpart.)
Since mirrorless cameras are so often good choices for travel and hiking photography, I’m glad to see Nikon putting effort into making some compact lenses these days. I expect that this lens, like the 28mm f/2.8, will sell very well, both due to its price and its portability. Personally, I’m considering getting one to complement my travel kit of the Nikon Z 14-30mm f/4 S and 24-200mm f/4-6.3 VR.
You can pre-order the lens at the following links, which I definitely recommend if you want to be near the front of the line:
Nikon also included several sample images for the 40mm f/2. I’ve added the ones with full EXIF below.
Official Sample Images
Below is Nikon’s full press release for the 40mm f/2:
FUN, FAST & AFFORDABLE: THE NIKKOR Z 40mm f/2 ULTRA COMPACT PRIME LENS
The Expansion of the NIKKOR Z Lens Line Continues
MELVILLE, NY –
Today Nikon announced the new NIKKOR Z 40mm f/2, a compact yet capable FX-format prime lens that provides fantastic image quality, fast aperture, a practical field of view and extraordinary bokeh for everyday image and video capture.
Affordable, portable and bright, this new optic checks all the right boxes for a lightweight lens to carry just about anywhere for nearly any occasion. Whether seeking a lens for everyday snaps, unobtrusive street photography or as a travel companion that easily fits in your carry-on, the new 40mm lets you capture with incredible sharpness, fast focus and gorgeous blurred backgrounds. Additionally, the fast aperture affords excellent low light performance and exceptional image quality – from portraits to food, or still life to 4K video, users can expect vivid colors and lifelike three-dimensional depth.
“Many creators have told us that they want extremely small lenses with fast apertures to complement their lightweight mirrorless Z series cameras,” said Jay Vannatter, Executive Vice President, Nikon Inc. “The new 40mm f/2 delivers as a great lens for travel, street photography or everyday use.”
The 40mm f/2 is a versatile lens that can be used with any Nikon Z series full frame or DX-format camera. The lens is small enough to pair perfectly with a Z 50, Z fc or Z 5, yet suitable for Z 6II and Z 7II users looking for a light and compact “walk-around” lens.
NIKKOR Z 40mm f/2: All-Purpose Prime with Beautiful Bokeh
- A compact, versatile prime lens that is ideal for everyday applications such as close-ups, casual portraits and food photography.
- Delivers fantastic bokeh and a dramatic separation of the subject from the background.
- The standard focal range hits the sweet spot of a natural angle of view, while still being wide enough for street photography. When mounted on a DX-format camera, the lens is equivalent to 60mm, which is a great focal length for flattering portraits.
- Ultra-compact, weighing in at merely 170g and only 1.8” long, making it easy to carry around for day-long outings.
- Built with 6 elements in 4 groups with a 9-blade diaphragm that creates a gorgeous, circular bokeh that draws attention to the subject.
- Utilizes an electromagnetic diaphragm for precise aperture control and stable exposure during continuous shooting.
- The NIKKOR Z 40mm f/2 offers a short 0.96ft (0.29m) minimum focusing distance, which is excellent for capturing food and top-down photos of décor and tablescapes.
- Designed with consideration for dust and drip-resistant performance with a sealing that prevents dust and water droplets from entering the lens.
- Video shooters will benefit from the quiet operation, natural focus shift that allows for fluid changes when going from close focusing to infinity, reduced focus breathing and smooth aperture control.
- The lens features an integrated control ring, which can be customized and assigned to adjust focus, ISO, aperture and exposure compensation.
Pricing and Availability
The new NIKKOR Z 40mm f/2 compact prime lens will be available starting later this fall (US) for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $299.95*. For more information about the latest Nikon products, including this new NIKKOR Z lens and the entire Nikon Z series, please visit nikonusa.com.
Nikon Inc. is a world leader in digital imaging, precision optics and technologies for photo and video capture; globally recognized for setting new standards in product design and performance for an award-winning array of equipment that enables visual storytelling and content creation. Nikon Inc. distributes consumer and professional Z Series mirrorless camera, digital SLR cameras, a vast array of NIKKOR and NIKKOR Z lenses, Speedlights and system accessories, Nikon COOLPIX® compact digital cameras and Nikon software products. For more information, dial (800) NIKON-US or visit www.nikonusa.com, which links all levels of photographers and visual storytellers to the Web’s most comprehensive learning and sharing communities. Connect with Nikon on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Vimeo and Flickr.
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The appearance of the product may differ from the photo shown above.
Specifications, equipment, and release dates are subject to change without any notice or obligation on the part of the manufacturer.