S-line ‘Long Range' Telephoto
Smart Photography|January 2022
Not every sports and wildlife photographer can afford exotic lenses like the 400 mm f/2.8 or the 500 mm f/4 or the 600 mm f/4.
Rohinton Mehta

Nikkor 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6 VR S2,41,995

Inside the Box

  • Lens

  • Front lens cap (LC-77B)

  • Rear lens cap (LF-N1)

  • Lens case (CL-C3)

  • Lens hood (HB-103)

  • User’s Manual

With that in mind, Nikon has introduced this variable aperture Nikkor Z 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6 VR S lens. It is a lighter, smaller as well as a less expensive alternative to the exotic lenses mentioned above. This is the first ‘long range’ S-line lens for the Z-series cameras from Nikon. Let’s see how it fares in our tests…

Design & Build Quality

The Nikkor Z 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6 VR S lens appears very well engineered. The outer cover is made from engineering plastic and metal while the lens mount is made of metal. It is weather-proof, offering dust and moisture sealing. The filter end of the lens has a rubberized ring, probably to avoid damage to the front end, if the lens is placed vertically on a hard surface, with the front end facing down. The rear end too has a rubber gasket to prevent dust or water splashes to enter the lens. The lens weighs 1355 g without its removable tripod collar foot (it weighs 1435 g with the collar + foot). The finish is immaculate. The lens is compatible with Nikon’s 1.4x and 2x S-line teleconverters. Filter thread is 77 mm and the lens is made in Japan.

Key Features

The first question that might come to mind is ‘why has Nikon created a ‘slow’, variable aperture lens? Why not f/4 (or f/2.8) throughout’? The answer is simple: To keep the lens as light as possible, smaller in size and at a lower price point so that everyone can afford it.

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