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Keywords: Nikon Nikkor Wide Prime 35mm Tilt-Shift Tested


langier

Registered: November 2005
Posts: 7
Nikon 24mm f/3.5D ED PC-E Nikkor review by langier
Review Date: 6/18/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $1,700.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp and built well
Cons: Expensive and bulky.

The 24mm PCE on an FX camera is the next best thing to a view camera without the bulk and inconvenience. It works with both FX & DX formats but really is designed for the D3 and D3x. Image control is not quite as versatile as when using a view camera but for most applications, it does a fine job.


Compared to most DX lenses, this lens is big and bulky especially compared to both the 28mm PC and the 35mm PC from the 20th century. Compared to both, image quality is a generation ahead.


It's sharp and a joy to use, though there are limitations to rotation and shift when using this lens on the D700 and D300 bodies, making it a PIA when you need to shift in certain directions. You need to be aware of these idiosyncrasies.


Out of the box the tilt is at 90 degrees to the shift. Officially, you must send this lens to Nikon to rotate title and shift to the same axis. With a cross-point driver and a little care, it takes but a few minutes to change the tilt vs. shift axis.


On a DX camera, this lens is about 36mm in focal length and is similar in focal length to the old standard 35mm PC on a film camera. On FX, you get a bit wider than the old mainstay 28 PC.


On an FX camera at full shift along the long image axis, you will have vignetted corners at full shift, 11.5mm. If this is a concern, reduce the shift to 8mm. Full shift should be fine on DX.


For panos, this is a cool lens in either direction. No muss and no fuss when you assemble the pieces. Best bet is to take a top-middle-bottom or left-center-right to have lots of overlap.


Using a modified TC-14e, this lens is still quite spectacular, though a full stop slower, about f/4.5. You won't get the undated data, but it works pretty well and without the shift limitations imposed by the over-hanging viewfinder.


With the electronically-controlled aperture, this lens is fairly easy to shoot hand-held with practice, but best results are of course obtained using your camera on a tripod and using a spirit level to properly level your camera.


Compared to making your geometric corrections in Photoshop, this is a much better way to go. Get the image right at the start and spend less time pushing pixel later with the bonus of outstanding image quality.


Compared to using both the original manual focus and preset 28mm and 35mm PC lenses, this is a little more complex yet easier on today's digital bodies. Compared to the 85mm PC (not the current PC-E), it's a step beyond in ease of use.


By the way, this lens focuses to within a few inches of the front element so it can be used pretty tightly.


In the overall scheme of things, this is one sharp lenses, especially once you get over sticker shock. Another home run for Nikon!
lextalionis

Registered: October 2007
Posts: 82
Nikon 24mm f/3.5D ED PC-E Nikkor review by lextalionis
Review Date: 11/23/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $2,000.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: It's a great tilt-shift lens.
Cons: A bit expensive for a nitch lens.

Well,


It's loads of fun! Want to shot cities and make the shots look like a make believe Mr. Rogers Neighborhood? Well, then this lens is for you.


Takes a lot of practice!


Sample high-resolution shots taken with a Nikon D300


-Lex


 






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