Nikon 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED AF-S VR Micro Nikkor

Lab Test Results

  • Blur

  • Chromatic Aberration

  • Vignetting

  • Geometric Distortion

Your purchases support this site

Buy the Nikon 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED AF-S VR Micro Nikkor
  • Search on Amazon

  • Adorama

    for $896.95

  • B&H Photo

    for $896.95

    Buy here to enter
    drawing this month for
    $500 Gift Card

B&H Sweepstake Rules

105mm $897
average price

image of Nikon 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED AF-S VR Micro Nikkor

(From Nikon lens literature) Nikon Corporation is pleased to announce the introduction of the AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED, the world’s first macro lens equipped with Nikon Silent Wave Motor (SWM) and Vibration Reduction (VR) systems. It offers a host of Nikon’s advanced optical features and technologies such as Nano Crystal Coat, Extra Low Dispersion (ED) glass and Internal Focusing (IF) . The AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED is engineered for use with both Nikon DX format digital and 35mm film SLR cameras.

This lens has been developed to meet user demand for a 105mm macro lens equipped with SWM, IF and VR system.

The SWM ensures fast and quiet autofocusing and quick switching between autofocus and manual operation. The IF system also offers a non-rotating front lens element that facilitates the use of circular polarizing filters.

With the enhanced VR system (VRII), photographers can capture sharp images at shutter speeds approximately 4 stops* slower [at near infinity to 3m (1/30x reproduction ratio)] than would otherwise be possible. The negative effects of camera shake are greatly amplified in close-up photography and can affect image sharpness greatly. The incorporation of Nikon VR technology in a Micro-Nikkor lens expands versatility by, for the first time, providing the sharpness benefits of VR and improving hand-held close-up photography. What’s more, the VRII offers stable viewfinder image for easy frame composition even at high magnification shooting.

In addition, the AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED also features proven Nikon optical technologies such as the Nano Crystal Coat, which drastically reduces flare, and one ED glass element that minimizes chromatic aberration, to provide higher resolution and high-contrast images.

The AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED ensures high-quality and high performance for all photographers – from amateurs to professionals.

* Under Nikon measurement conditions.

Test Notes

This is the updated version of a classic Nikon macro lens, the Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8, the most noticeable differences being the addition of Nikon’s excellent Vibration Reduction (VR) technology to this new model, and the correspondingly higher price. (Currently in late summer 2006, about $180 more at typical street prices.) This new model is also about 8 ounces heavier (a total weight of 790 grams, or 27.9 ounces) than the not-exactly-svelte original 105mm. Another welcome addition though, is Nikon’s Silent Wave focus motor, so this new 105mm is both faster-focusing and more quiet than the old timer it’s replacing.

While the optical formulas for the two lenses are very different, their optical performance in all the parameters we measure (blur, chromatic aberration, distortion, and light falloff) is very similar. The original holds a very slight edge in both sharpness and light falloff (“vignetting”), but the new model wins in chromatic aberration again by a slight margin. One subtle point noted in a user review below is that the updated 105mm also sports a 9-blade diaphragm, which makes for lovely, smooth bokeh (rendering of out-of-focus elements). Geometric distortion is very low, albeit both slightly higher and of a different sort than the original 105mm: The new 105mm VR showed 0.07% maximum barrel distortion, compared to the 0.04% pincushion of the original. Average distortion for both lenses is very low, 0.03% for the new model, vs 0.02% for the original. The distortion of both lenses is low enough that most shooters will be able to ignore it entirely.

All in all, this is a superb optic, particularly if you’re a macro fanatic. (Many is the time we’ve lamented the lack of VR in our old 105mm f/2.8: Shooting bugs or fungi on the forest floor, there’s rarely enough light to deliver sharp hand-held photos.) Highly recommended, if you’re in the market for the ultimate macro lens for your Nikon SLR body!