Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Great Old Glass! Nikkor 105/2.8 Micro

In April this year I wrote about an old manual focus Nikon zoom, the incredible Nikkor 80-200 f4 that was used to capture Dr Mahathir's iconic picture, I still try to use that lens on my D300 DSLR whenever I can!

Going through my arsenal of old Nikkor lenses lat week I noticed the long unused 105 f2.8 micro and I wonder how this second edition lens fared in 2009!

After all, Nikon has now put in auto-focus and VR in their latest edition; as far as I know the lens elements are now different too. Why, even Ken Rockwell reckoned the new version as; and I quote - "For all-around use as a general-purpose tele, this 105mm is Nikon's best yet."!

Sunday turn out to be a lovely sunny spring day. I decided to test out the old micro at our botanical garden, on the colourful tulips. Because of the DX format on the D300, the lens is effectively a 160 mm prime! I will use the lens like a short telephoto.

The late afternoon spring sun was really strong in this shot, I was stunned by how sharp and contrasty the lens is! For an old glass that was designed 20 years ago!

The pair of lovely crimson Daydream were shot at f4, I like the smooth bokeh it delivered. There were no lens flare with the strong back light.

The rendition of colour and subtle tonal range are breath taking in this back lit Lily Schreyer tulips!

Like me, she also find Lily irresistible!

Lastly, a photo taken with the Nikon 12-24mm ultra-wide zoom. Shooting into the sun, look at all them flares! Not unpleasant though :) Don't be afraid to shoot INTO the light!

This bed of Daydream and White Dream tulips are planted to honour all the people of Dutch heritage who have made Wellington their home.

Orange is the national colour of the Netherlands.

Famous Last Words:

Do not under estimate old lenses, they can surprise you!

I saw some tidy example of this lens at second-hand joint at as low as NZ$100, if the lens is as tidy as mine; it is a real bargain! So what it has no auto focus, you got your eyes! ;)

And I am NOT selling mine!

1 comment:

heather said...

New is not necessarily best. Alas with the technological advances and the culture of conspicuous consumption and planned obsolescence,quality is often compromised.I like the idea of your old lense producing sharp images with good contrast.It proves my point.
About tulips.. historians trace the origin of the the tulip bulb back to the Ottoman Empire. Behind the Ottoman Empire; references usually locate the origin of the flower to remote places between Mongolia, China and Kazakhstan. Today tulips can be found growing wild in Jordan.