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Nikkor 58mm F/1.4G Announcements

Nikon Announces New D5300 DSLR and Nikkor 58mm F/1.4G Lens

By Anthony Thurston on October 16th 2013

We told you yesterday that an announcement on the rumored Nikkor 58mm F/1.4G could come as soon as today and what do you know, tonight Nikon announced their new D5300 consumer dslr as well as the rumored 58mm F/1.4G that we mentioned.

Nikon D5300

First off lets get the D5300 talk out of the way since it is pretty standard. The D5300 comes with WiFi connectivity, shoots 5fps, and has a 39-point AF system. Basically Nikon just released a stripped down D7100 in the D5200 body, just as the D5200 was just a stripped D7000 in a smaller body. It will make a great beginners dslr, but for anyone that wants a serious dslr the D5300 – just as its predecessor the D5200 was not – is not a serious option in my humble opinion.

If you are interested in more information on the Nikon D5300 you can find the full press release from Nikon here.

Now for the announcement that I was waiting for, the Nikkor 58mm F/1.4G. Many of you, as well as I, pointed out at 58mm was an odd focal length for a new F/1.4 prime lens considering the 50mm F/1.4G is still a fairly new lens. The key difference here between the two lenses, besides the obvious 8mm difference in focal length, is the superior quality of the 58mm F/1.4G. But as with anything, that superior quality comes at a pretty steep price increase.

Nikkor 58mm F/1.4G

Nikon’s new Nikkor 58mm F/1.4G will be available at the end of this month and will retail for $1,699 US. For comparisons sake, the Nikon 50mm F/1.4G is currently available for around $400, that is an enormous $1399 difference in price. Nikon is hoping that the highly superior optics and build quality on the 58mm are enough to sway you that direction, a hope that I think will fall on deaf ears.

That said, here are the specs on the new 58mm F/1.4G:

  • Filter Size: 72 mm
  • Focal Length: 58mm
  • Minimum Focus Distance: 0.58 m
  • Nano Crystal Coating: Yes
  • 9 elements in 6 groups
  • Max Aperture: f/1.4
  • Min Aperture: f/16
  • Weight: 385 g

Nikon-AF-S-NIKKOR-58mm-f1.4G-lens-MTF-chart Nikon-AF-S-NIKKOR-58mm-f1.4G-lens-construction

UPDATE: The Nikon D5300 and Nikkor 58mm F/1.4 are now available for pre-order through B&H. If you would like to pre-order the D5300 you can find that information here, or if you are interested in the 58mm F/1.4 you can find that here.

So what are your thoughts on these two announcements from Nikon? Is the D5300 more than what I make it out to be? Is the 58mm F/1.4G the best thing since sliced bread? Let us know your opinion in the comments below.


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Anthony Thurston is a photographer based in the Salem, Oregon area specializing in Boudoir. He recently started a new project, Fiercely Boudoir to help support the growing boudoir community. Find him over on Instagram. You may also connect with him via Email.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Rafael Steffen

    Amazing lens with a lot of history!

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  2. koferk

    I think it’s a shame they didn’t give it the ED Glass treatment..

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  3. Ryan Cooper

    First one minor error in the article, you mention the 50mm F1.4G costs around $300 while linking to BH photo where they charge $439 for the lens. Assuming this is just a typo. :)

    I think for me looking at this new 58mm lens is that it is something that I have really been waiting for from Nikon. I likely will hold out for a bit to see if Sigma pumps out a new 50mm F1.4 in their Art line before making the purchase but this new fifty is exactly what I have been waiting for.

    I have never been a big fan of Nikon’s 50s, while sharp they have a lot of downsides. I have seen a ton of negative comments about this lens so far and the high price point but I think as most will probably realize that this lens is not for everyone. If you are someone that can really benefit from it you know who you are and also know that the price is likely worth it for you.

    From the sample picture Nikon supplied (which aren’t really great photos) I can tell I really love the Bokeh that this lens creates. I feel it gives the images a much more 3D feel to them than the other fifties Nikon makes which is a huge selling point. I am also looking forward to seeing how effective the coatings will be in everyday use in terms of minimizing flare and aberration. (which Nikon’s current fifties don’t really do a great job of)

    I also am really fond of the 58mm focal length. It is about as close to normal vision as you can get and also is positioned more evenly between the 35mm and 85mm focal lengths which in my opinion makes that trio a really strong portraiture arsenal.

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  4. Stan Rogers

    It seems to me that Nikon has the D5X00 system positioned as the entry-level videographer’s DSLR that happens to include some of those inevitable still-camera features (if you’re the type who will use them). As someone who uses cameras the other way around (and finds the video features/controls an annoying and largely unnecessary complication of the camera’s ergonomics), it’s easy for me to miss what the D5300 brings to the game, too. But when you consider how many features would require external accessories on their more “serious” models (the articulated screen alone will save you the cost of an external monitor and rig support for same) AND how much more you get than you would have if you opt for the D3X00 series, I can see how it fills a niche. Not MY niche, but a big niche nonetheless. And (depending on the software support), the new wifi might offer something like a poor man’s version of the D4’s remote operation ability (via its web interface and network card) — but that remains to be seen.

    As for the 58, well, Nikon’s had a bit of a love affair with that focal length for as long as there’s been an F-mount, and it has seen use in some of their best lenses in any given period. There’s probably a reason for that (a sweet spot for optics, geometry and materials cost). I likely won’t buy one (barring some sort of unlikely windfall) regardless of how it performs, but I’m leaning towards the thought that this might be a rather special lens, and that it might be worth the money to some photographers. (The last Nokt is still selling for $2-3K used, and it’s not because of the max aperture alone. And it isn’t just silly collectors driving the price, either, it’s people who actually need the low-coma performance wide open.)

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    • Anthony T.

      Great points all around Stan, Thanks for the comment. After thinking on it more over the night I think you are probably correct about the 58mm F/1.4G, it will probably be a spectacular performer. I think the price will be be very limiting to its sales though.

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