Nikon 24mm f/1.8 G
FX ED AF-S NIKKOR (2015-)
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24mm f/1.8G ED (FX, DX and 35mm coverage, 72mm filters, 12.5 oz./355g, 0.75'/9"/0.24m close focus, about $747). bigger. I got mine at Adorama. I'd also get it at B&H, at Amazon or at Crutchfield.
This ad-free website's biggest source of support is when you use those or any of these links to approved sources when you get anything, regardless of the country in which you live. Nikon does not seal its boxes, so never buy at retail or any source not on my personally approved list since you'll have no way of knowing if you're missing accessories, getting a defective, dropped, damaged or used lens, a customer return or if the warranty has already been registered to someone else online! The approved sources I use ship from secure, remote automated warehouses far away from salespeople or other customers. No one gets to touch your new lens before you do, and these approved sources have the best prices, selection, service and return policies. That's why I've been using them for decades.
Pizzeria, 17 December 2015. D810 at Auto ISO 360, f/1.8 at 1/30. bigger or full-resolution to explore on your computer (mobile devices rarely display full resolution images properly). Note that of course only the left-center is in focus; the sides are not in focus.
This Nikon 24mm f/1.8 FX is a fast, sharp and tough wide-angle lens. It's just about the same thing as the extraordinary 24/1.4G, but much smaller, lighter and less expensive. It is worlds beyond the performance of the ancient manual-focus 24mm f/2 AI-s.
A fingertip can turn the big focus ring at any time for instant manual-focus override.
It's small, tough and optically superb. It's a great lens all around.
Everything works perfectly on every digital Nikon ever made, both FX and DX, from the best Df, D4s, D810, D750 and D610 to Nikon's cheapest digitals like the D40, D40x, D60, D3000, D3100, D3200, D3300, D5000, D5100, D5200 and D5300.
The incompatibilities for older or cheaper 35mm cameras are that:
1.) It won't autofocus with the cheapest new AF 35mm cameras like the N55, but if you focus manually, everything else works great. Even if you lose autofocus, these cameras have in-finder focus confirmation dots to help you.
2.) Late 1980s ~ early 1990s AF cameras like the N90s, N70 and F4 will focus and meter perfectly. You'll have Program and Shutter-priority modes, but you won't have Manual or Aperture-priority since you have no way to set the aperture on the camera or on the lens.
3.) You're really pushing it with the oldest AF cameras like the N2020, N6006 and N8008. You'll have no AF and confused exposure modes. Manual focus is fine, along with electronic focus indications.
4.) Since it has no aperture ring, it's just about useless with manual focus 35mm cameras. It will shoot every shot at its minimum aperture.
See Nikon Lens Compatibility for details with your camera. Read down the "AF-S, AF-I" and "G" columns for this lens. You'll get the least of all the features displayed in all columns, since "G" (gelding) is a deliberate handicap which removes features and compatibility
This is a full-frame lens optimized for use on FX cameras, and I'll be reviewing it as such.
It works great on DX cameras, for which you may make the usual inferences.
Nikon 24mm f/1.8. bigger.
Nikon 24mm f/1.8. bigger.
Nikon calls this the Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24mm f/1.8G ED N SWM RF Aspherical ∅72.
AF-S and SWM: Silent Wave Autofocus Motor.
NIKKOR: Nikon's brand name for all their lenses.
ED: Magic Extra-low Dispersion glass for reduced secondary chromatic aberration.
N: Magic Nano-crystal coating, meaning a coating which varies its index of refraction continuously to achieve even greater reflection reduction. It's probably only on one surface, and is used mostly for marketing purposes.
RF: Rear focusing; nothing moves externally as focused except the rear element.
Aspherical: Specially curved glass to give even sharper pictures.
∅72: 72mm filter thread.
Nikon 24mm f/1.8 internal diagram. ED glass and aspherical elements.
12 elements in 9 groups.
2 are of ED glass.
2 are aspherical.
One surface, usually the inside rear of the largest element, is Nano-crystal coated to eliminate ghosts.
It's multicoated, which Nikon calls Nikon Super Integrated Coating.
Close Focus top
0.75 feet (9" or 24 cm) from the image plane.
Maximum Reproduction Ratio top
Nikon 24mm f/1.8 at f/16. bigger.
Rounded at large apertures, heptagonal at medium and small apertures.
Stops down to f/16.
Focal Length top
Angle of View top
61° on small-format DX.
Hard Infinity Focus Stop? top
You have to let the AF system focus at infinity.
Focus Scale top
Depth-of-Field Scale top
Not really, only one pair of ticks for f/16.
Infra-Red Focus Index top
Aperture Ring top
Filter Thread top
3.05" (77.5 mm) diameter by 3.27" (83.0 mm) extension from flange.
12.513 oz. (354.8 g), measured.
Rated 12.6 oz. (355 g).
Nikon HB-76 hood. bigger.
The plastic bayonet HB-76 hood is included.
CL-1015 pouch, included.
LF-4 rear cap.
Made in China.
5 years, USA.
Gold-tone microcorrugated box.
In the box is the lens and hood in a translucent plastic holder. The folded pouch lies on top, while the paperwork is tucked away on the side, behind a cardboard wall.
Tuesday, 04 August 2015, 12:01 AM NYC time.
Promised for top
17 September 2015.
Nikon Product Number top
Price, USA top
$747, August ~ Christmas 2015.
This Nikon 24/1.8 is fast, sharp, tough, small and light and handles great. If you were Galen Rowell, this could be the only lens you need, along with a tele zoom.
Autofocus is fast and accurate, no worries here.
Manual focus is light and easy. Half the lens is the focus ring, and it turns with a fingertip.
Turn it at any time for instant manual focus override; no need to slide the switch unless you want to lock it in manual focus.
Bokeh, the quality of out-of-focus areas as opposed to the degree of defocus, is very good — but rarely is anything much out of focus with a 24mm lens. Amount of defocus depends more on focal length than aperture.
This is shot wide open from headshot distance. Click for the camera-original file to explore on your computer (portable devices rarely can display the full resolution of these files):
The Nikon 24 1.8 has minor to moderate barrel distortion. It's easy to correct in Photoshop, and most newer Nikons can correct it in-camera.
These values in Photoshop's Lens Distortion tool will completely remove the distortion if your camera doesn't. These aren't facts or specifications, they are the results of my research that requires hours of photography and calculations on the resulting data.
© 2015 KenRockwell.com. All rights reserved.
Nikon 24 1.8. bigger.
I love an honest lens. All you do is grab and go with this one.
Half of it is the manual focus ring, which turns easily and smoothly with one fingertip.
The auto/manual focus switch it right under your thumb, and you can just turn the ring any time for instant manual-focus override.
The flared front keeps your fingers out of the way.
Even uncorrected, falloff is only somewhat visible wide open and goes away when stopped down a stop. It's never a problem as it was on the old manual-focus 24mm f/2 AI-s.
Most Nikons can correct for this, and the effect will be even less than I've greatly exaggerated here by shooting a gray field and showing it on a gray background:
There's no need for thin filters. Even on full-frame I get no vignetting with two stacked normal filters, and only minor vignetting with three.
Go ahead and use your standard rotating polarizer and grad filters.
Don't use polarizers on ultrawide lenses; nature looks funny through them. This is the case for all ultrawides, so be on the lookout for bands in the sky when you use one with any 24mm lens.
There is but one small green dot or blob opposite the sun, as you can see at Sunstars.
It's a bit better without a filter, but even with, it's very good performance.
The dot is a dot at small apertures, and a larger, dimmer blob at large apertures.
There are no lateral color fringes as shot on my D810, which corrects any that might be there.
Macro gets quite close for a wide lens:
Crop from above at 100%. If this is about 8" (20cm) on your screen, printing the complete image at this same high magnification would result in a 50 x 75" (125 x 200 cm) print! Camera-original file to explore on your computer (most portable devices can't show the full resolution file properly).
It's super sharp at f/8, but softer at f/1.8 due to spherochromatism:
Crop from similar image shot at f/1.8 at 100%. If this is about 8" (20cm) on your screen, printing the complete image at this same high magnification would result in a 50 x 75" (125 x 200 cm) print! Camera-original file to explore on your computer (most portable devices can't show the full resolution file properly).
Nikon 24mm f/1.8. bigger.
The Nikon 24/1.8 is optically and ergonomically excellent, but except for the mount and the glass, it's mostly plastic.
Flared Front Barrel
Plastic with some metal.
Black plastic plate with gold-finish raised lettering.
Moisture Seal at Mount
Sticker glued into recess on bottom of barrel.
Noises When Shaken
Minor to moderate rattling.
Image sharpness depends more on you than your lens, and lens sharpness doesn't mean much to good photographers. It's the least skilled hobbyists who waste the most time blaming fuzzy pictures on their lenses, while real shooters know that few photos ever use all the sharpness of which their lenses are capable due to subject motion and the fact that real subjects are rarely perfectly flat.
This said, this 24/1.8 is as sharp as they get. It's ultra-sharp from edge to edge at every aperture.
In the lab, it's only very slightly softer in the corners wide-open due to some very minor coma. This goes away by f/4, and the corners are optimum at f/11. You'll never see this in actual pictures; in actual pictures it's ultra sharp and contrasty corner to corner even wide-open.
Nikon's s MTF curves confirm this, and they show that' it's sharper at f/1.8 than the Nikon 24/1.4 is at f/1.4!
Nikon 24mm f/1.8 MTF.
Spherochromatism, also called "color bokeh" by laymen, causes colored fringes on slightly out-of-focus highlights, usually seen as green fringes on backgrounds and magenta fringes on foregrounds.
It is an advanced form of chromatic aberration in a different dimension than lateral color. Spherochromatism is most commonly seen in fast lenses of moderate focal length when shooting contrasty items at full aperture. It goes away as stopped down.
Crop at 100% from above. bigger. If this is about 8" (20cm) on your screen, printing the complete image at this same high magnification would result in a 50 x 75" (125 x 200 cm) print.
I only see this minor spherochromatism at macro distances. I see much less at normal distances.
This is excellent performance; much better than the ZEISS 35mm f/1.4 for Sony FE.
Even though it has curved blades and doesn't make any stars at f/4 and wider, I had no problem getting great sunstars from f/5.6 on:
Versus the 24mm f/1.4
The Nikon 24mm f/1.4 is much bigger, heavier and more expensive.
The 1.4 does the same thing but is 2/3 of a stop faster and made better in Japan instead of China, but you're paying dearly for that 2/3 stop and domestic manufacturing.
They're both optically superb.
It's important to note that Nikon introduced the f/1.4 back in 2010. Nikon introduced the f/1.4 first because all the guys like me bought them back then, since there was no f/1.8.
If Nikon introduced both at the same time, I'd have gotten the f/1.8 instead for digital. I use my f/1.4 for shooting Velvia 50 in dim light, but for digital, get this f/1.8.
In other words, Nikon didn't introduce the f/1.4 and f/1.8 at the same time since it knew no one would buy the 1.4 if we had this lens available back then!
Versus the 24mm f/2.8 AF-D
Nikon 24mm f/2.8 AF-D.
The 24/2.8 AF-D is from the 1980s. Its optical design is from the 1970s, and it's still sold today.
Its decades-old optics are just as good stopped down, but mushy in the FX corners at f/2.8.
It's over a stop slower and has more falloff at the same wide aperture as the 1.8G; so there's no comparison there.
Its ergonomics are poor. The manual focus ring is much smaller, and you have to move a switch to get between auto and manual focus. The focus ring motors around as it autofocuses; keep your hands off the ring when in autofocus mode!
Good is that it has an aperture ring, but bad is that it was a silly lens back when new in the 1980s, and even more antediluvian feeling today.
Versus the 24mm f/2 manual focus (1977-2007)
Nikon 24mm f/2 AI-s.
The classic 24mm f/2 AI-s is smaller, lighter, half the price used if you know How to Win at eBay and built much better than any of the autofocus lenses, but is manual-focus only and far inferior optically.
The 24/2 was the king of Kodachrome back in the 1980s when you shot for National Geographic, but today it looks awful by comparison when shot wide-open because of its much lower contrast and wild coma in the corners, as well as plenty of falloff wide-open designed-in to hide the soft corners.
Shot at normal apertures it's just as sharp, but for use at large apertures, save this lens for manual-focus 35mm cameras.
Versus the other f/1.8G Lenses
Your choice among these models is your artistic preference. Personally I'm not a fan of 24mm or 28mm lenses; I prefer 20mm and 35mm lenses, but that's just how I see things.
They're all equally great; pick them based on what focal lengths you prefer. The 20mm is my favorite, but that's because that's how I see the world on the wide end.
If you want to make a system out of these, get just the 20, 35, 50 and 85, or just the 24, 50 and 85, or just the 28, 50 and 85, or whatever.
The 20 and 24 are so close that you should never carry both at the same time, nor should you carry the 24 and 28 or the 28 and 35 at the same time. These are too close to each other; Nikon makes these all so you have a choice.
See also Assembling a System.
M/A - M Switch
Nikon goofed. This switch is supposed to be labeled "A - M."
The "M/A" position means autofocus. It's called "M/A" because you also can focus manually simply by grabbing the focus ring in this position.
The "M/A" position means autofocus. It's called "M/A" because back in the old days, when Nikon had almost caught up to Canon who had been doing this for ten years before, Nikon was trying to show off that you could focus manually while in the AF position.
Paint over the extra M if you're easily confused.
As you may have guessed, this is an optically flawless lens. It is so far ahead of Nikon's manual-focus 24mm f/2 AI-s lens that it's not funny.
If you want a super-fast, super-sharp, super easy to use wide lens, this is the best 24mm Nikon has ever made other than the 24/1.4 that's pretty much the same, just bigger, heavier, faster and more expensive.
Filters & Hood
I would leave the hood at home.
If you want the best possible protective filter, the 72mm Hoya HD3 UV is ultra multicoated, repels dirt and fingerprints and made of shatter resistant glass.
If I was working in nasty, dirty areas and didn't want to spring for the HD3 filter, I'd use an uncoated 72mm Tiffen UV filter instead. Uncoated filters are much easier to clean, but more prone to ghosting.
Where to get yours
This ad-free website is supported by your using those or any of these links to approved sources when you get anything, regardless of the country in which you live. It helps me keep reviewing these lenses when you get yours through these links — but I receive nothing for my efforts if you take your chances and buy elsewhere.
Thanks for helping me help you!
© Ken Rockwell. All rights reserved. Tous droits réservés. Alle Rechte vorbehalten.
Help me help you top
I support my growing family through this website, as crazy as it might seem.
The biggest help is when you use any of these links when you get anything, regardless of the country in which you live. It costs you nothing, and is this site's, and thus my family's, biggest source of support. These places have the best prices and service, which is why I've used them since before this website existed. I recommend them all personally.
If you find this page as helpful as a book you might have had to buy or a workshop you may have had to take, feel free to help me continue helping everyone.
As this page is copyrighted and formally registered, it is unlawful to make copies, especially in the form of printouts for personal use. If you wish to make a printout for personal use, you are granted one-time permission only if you PayPal me $5.00 per printout or part thereof. Thank you!
Thanks for reading!
made 600 from 800 px 12 Jan 2016; 20 December 2015, 04 August 2015