When photographers only begin their career, they are usually divided into two types. The former dream of having an ultrazoom lens—something which goes beyond 200mm—and the latter feel like they are living their life in vain without having an ultra-wide-angle lens.
This review is dedicated to the latter type of photographers, unveiling the truth and all details behind the widest DX lens in the Nikon line-up. Please welcome ultra-wide Nikon 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5G ED AF-S DX lens and keep reading to find out more about it!
There are two things that we would like to mention before getting down to the gist of this review. The first thing is that this 10-24mm lens is not only the Nikon’s widest DX lens but also the second widest lens produced by Nikon ever, giving way only to Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8G ED AF-S for FX cameras by 1mm in 35mm equivalent.
The second thing is that this lens is literally sharp on all focal lengths, doesn’t have any chromatic aberrations, and has almost no ghosts/flare. Exciting, isn’t it? Let’s talk about it more.
Nikon 10-24mm weighs just over a pound (460 grams) and is made of fortified plastic. However, fortunately the lens mount is made of metal and overall the lens feels solid. Its optics system—which delivers perfect results—features 14 optical elements in 9 groups, 3 of which are aspherical and two are ED. The lens has 7 aperture blades, which is acceptable and benefits the bokeh.
Let us say a few words more about its focal length. The catch is that if we think about it in the 35mm equivalent, the focal length will be 15mm to 36mm, making it unique. The former is perfect for taking landscape and cityscape photos and the later is great for good old street photography as well as for general photography. The angle of view of this lens is 109° to 61°.
As we have already mentioned above, the lens is super sharp overall, but you still may see just a bit of corner softness at 10mm to 12mm, especially if the photos were made on a sunny day. Apart from it, this is one of the sharpest lenses that we have reviewed so far.
The lens has the aperture of f/3.5 to f/4.5 and it means that you will be even able to get some bokeh, which obviously will be unsubstantial, on the narrow end. Talking about bokeh we feel it as our responsibility to tell you that this lens may be used to make great full-body portraits at the wide angle of 10mm that will have a nice and interesting look to them.
Now let’s skip to the lens performance. You already know that it has almost no chromatic aberrations, but it’s not like that when it comes to vignetting and distortion. Vignetting is clearly visible on the wide end of the lens, especially on 10mm to 12mm focal lengths.
Distortion is an entire long story with Nikon 10-24mm. The lens has heavy barrel distortion on the wide end, middle percussion distortion at 15mm, and almost no distortion at 20mm to 24mm. The barrel distortion on the wide end of the lens—which is visible only at the corners of the image—may be pretty difficult to remove in Lightroom. However, you should try to spend an hour or so and find the right formula to get rid of it. Then just save the preset and use it every time you edit the photos made using this lens.
As you can see, the lens has its slight drawbacks, but overall it nails it. Nikon 10-24mm features focus overriding, can be stopped from f/22 down to f/29 depending on the aperture, and has 77mm filter size.
Nikon 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5G ED AF-S comes together with a lens hood, lens pouch, lens cap, and rear lens cap and may be purchased from various online photography equipment vendors for $896 as of March 2016. This is definitely not cheap for a DX lens, but it’s completely worth it.
We hope that this article was of help to you and we’ll be glad to answer your questions in comments. Feel free to shoot us a message!
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