Caught In Camera

Nikon Z 14-30mm f/4 S Overview

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Final month, I highlighted the efficiency of the Nikon Z 14-30mm f/4 S on my journey to Dying Valley. It was a brief journey, and the primary such tour I used to be capable of take with this lens. Now that I’ve had extra time to discover its capabilities, I’ve a extra detailed evaluation prepared for you. As I discussed in my Dying Valley article, though many individuals have contemplated a transfer to the Nikon Z6 or Nikon Z7, there was some apprehension in regards to the availability of glass for these cameras. I am right here to inform you that regardless that the choice is skinny in the mean time, this lens and its S-series compatriots definitely greater than make up for it with high quality. Let’s get to the Nikon Z 14-30mm f/4 S evaluation!

Desk of Contents

Nikon Z 14-30mm f/4 S Specs

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Since that is the primary ultra-wide lens for Z-series cameras (and it is going to be the one one for about one other 12 months), it was met with common curiosity. It had quite a bit to reside as much as on condition that the picture high quality of its predecessors within the S-line of lenses has been nothing wanting impeccable. I am going to get into the picture high quality later on this evaluation, however for now, let’s take a look at a few of this lens’s noteworthy specs:

  • Focal size: 14-30mm
  • Aperture vary: f/4-f/22
  • Aperture blades: 7 rounded
  • Diaphragm: Digital
  • Lens components/teams: 14/13
  • Particular components: 4 aspherical, 4 ED
  • Coatings: Nano crystal, fluorine, tremendous built-in
  • Mount: Steel
  • Filter measurement: 82mm

Many of those specs are self-explanatory, however there are a few issues I would wish to level out. First, observe that this lens takes an ordinary 82mm filter. That is as a result of there’s not an enormous, bulbous glass aspect on the entrance of the lens just like the 14-24mm f/2.8. Second, not solely is the mount on this lens steel, however the lens can also be climate and dust-sealed, so it is sturdy and as much as the problem of capturing in adversarial situations.

Different options price noting are a near-silent AF-P stepper motor, a minimal focusing distance of 11 inches, and a viewing angle that ranges from 114-degrees to 72-degrees. Lastly, this lens is miles smaller and lighter-weight than the 14-24mm f/2.8 I have been lugging round for years. Coming in at simply 1.07 kilos, it is featherlight. Get a whole rundown of the options of this lens within the video above by TheSnapChick.

Nikon Z 14-30mm f/4 S Dealing with & Construct High quality

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So far as dealing with goes, the sunshine weight and smaller type issue make for a pleasing capturing expertise. The lens does not weigh you down, nor does it really feel overly obstructive, as I’ve discovered the 14-24mm f/2.8 to really feel at occasions. Past that, Nikon have completed a implausible job constructing this lens to enhance dealing with. The truth is, as a long-time Nikon shooter, this appears like a Nikon lens – it is ergonomically spot-on, has acquainted building, and handles nicely. For those who’ve ever used a Nikon lens earlier than, this one will really feel acquainted to you.

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From a design standpoint, it is glossy and minimal. There is a single swap that is used to vary from autofocus to guide, together with a spotlight ring and a zoom ring. Some reviewers have famous that this glossy design is just too streamlined, however for me, it is labored fantastically to this point. It has a locking mechanism that makes the lens shorter when not in use, which provides you a bit added room in your digicam bag and fewer floor space to catch on issues as you stroll round (though it’s too straightforward to unlock the lens inadvertently) .

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Though the mount is steel, there are a lot of plastic elements on this lens, which at first is a bit disconcerting. Nobody would blame you for questioning if it is really a sturdy lens the primary time you maintain it. However as you employ it, you rapidly understand that that is one heck of a well-built lens. There is no such thing as a wobble when the lens barrel is prolonged, its climate and dust-sealing are wonderful, and it might tolerate excessive temperatures (at the least on the excessive finish, as I realized in Dying Valley). Along with Dying Valley, I’ve taken this lens to a number of seashores right here in Southern California and no sand has made its manner into the lens but, so I am impressed on that entrance!

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Having mentioned that, since that is an exterior zoom lens, I concede that there’s at all times going to be a chance {that a} grain or two of sand will get in there and makes zooming a tougher activity. Likewise, exterior zoom lenses are extra liable to water and dirt creeping in. However, at this level, the construct of this lens – significantly the seals Nikon used – appear to be greater than able to defending the fragile inside parts of the lens. By the identical token, the fluorine coating on the lens glass makes eradicating water, smudges, mud, and so forth a a lot simpler activity.

Nikon Z 14-30mm f/4 S Optical Efficiency

This lens is surprisingly sharp all through the aperture and zoom vary. Unsurprisingly, it is the least sharp on the sides of the body at 14mm. Even zooming in to only 16mm improves nook sharpness. It is necessary to notice that the corners are by no means supremely sharp, however they’re by no means horrible both. Within the middle of the body, this lens actually shines. Whether or not you are at 14mm, 30mm, or someplace in between, you may anticipate excellent sharpness within the center, significantly at f/5.6 and f/4. Get extra particulars on the optics of this lens within the video above by The Artwork of Pictures.

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Vignetting is pretty vital particularly at 14mm, however nothing so unhealthy that it might’t be simply corrected in post-processing. Vignetting is current as you zoom in as nicely, however between 16mm and 30mm, the vignetting is noticeably decreased. That is true even when utilizing a filter on the lens. So long as the filter has a slim housing, you will not discover any enhance in vignetting. Distortion is excessive at 14mm – very excessive, in truth. Distortion can also be current at longer focal lengths. However since Adobe has a built-in profile for this lens, you will possible by no means see all that distortion. The problem with that is that Adobe corrects for the distortion by stretching the pixels within the corners of the photograph, which makes the corners – that are already not as sharp – even much less sharp. Nevertheless, for me, this is not an enormous disaster. Sure, the corners are much less sharp, however not a lot that I’d eliminate this lens and by no means shoot with it once more!

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From a focusing standpoint, it is laborious to not be impressed with this lens’s autofocus. It is each quick and nearly silent, and offers you correct outcomes as nicely. The truth is, the precision with which it really works in Dwell View and within the viewfinder is kind of spectacular. For close-ups, the lens will get you a most magnification of 1:6.25 at 30mm, which is nice sufficient to fill the body on the horizontal axis with a topic that is about 8-10 inches in measurement. That is not going to knock anybody’s socks off, however this lens was by no means meant for use for close-up or macro work anyway. And whereas the AF-P motor within the lens makes guide focusing not as straightforward because it could possibly be, you may nonetheless use guide focus and get clear, pinpoint sharpness.

Nikon Z 14-30mm f/4 S Value

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At $1,296.95, this isn’t precisely an affordable lens, but it surely’s not the most costly lens on this planet both. As I discussed earlier, while you first decide up this lens and understand how light-weight it’s and the way a lot of it’s plastic, you may’t assist however surprise if it is well worth the $1,300 price ticket. However as I’ve defined above, whereas this is not an ideal lens, it is a darn good one – an excellent one, in truth. I primarily shoot landscapes, and I have been completely impressed with its dealing with, construct high quality, options, and efficiency within the discipline to this point. I picked up this lens from my buddies at Samy’s Digital camera, they usually advised me that it could be match for my workflow, they usually had been proper. After a decade of being their buyer, they know me, the kind of work I do, and what is going to and will not work for me, and that is price its weight in gold! For those who shoot with a Nikon Z6 or Z7, and also you need to decide up this lens or one other S-series lens, do your self a favor and hit up Samy’s for an excellent deal and wonderful service earlier than, throughout, and after the sale!



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