Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24mm f/1.4G ED
May 11, 2010
By Dan Havlik
And for all those frustrated Canon users out there who keep waiting for reviews of new Canon lenses, I’m sorry to say I’ve got nothing for you again this month. To tell you the truth, I tried to get my hands on Canon’s new EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM but apparently there was some kind of shortage and one delay led to another and it was a no-go once again. My apologies but please check these pages again next month.
In the meantime, here’s a quick look at another new impressive Nikon lens, the AF-S Nikkor 24mm f/1.4G ED. While I spent approximately 2,000 words in last month’s issue telling you how much I liked the Nikkor 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II, I’ll keep this lens review short and sweet, partially because I’m running out of room in this column and partially because there’s not a lot to say.
If you like wide-angle photos with dramatic, blurred backgrounds and are a Nikon user, you’ll immediately want to add this fast aperture, low-light prime lens to your arsenal. The Nikkor 24mm f/1.4G ED works with both FX and DX format Nikon cameras but I’d strongly recommend only buying it if you have a full-frame camera (such as the D3s) since that’s the only way you’ll be able to enjoy the complete wide-angle effect.
My lens sample arrived right before the start of the New York Auto Show and the 24mm f/1.4G ED was the perfect instrument for capturing dramatic shots of the new cars with excellent sharpness and beautiful bokeh in the background. One of the events I used the lens at was a party to unveil a new hybrid Touareg SUV from Volkswagen. Even though the party was packed with journalists and car buffs drooling over the new Touareg, the lens had no problem capturing the entire vehicle. Lighting at the event was terrible—dark and full of flashing red-and-white party lights—but thanks to the fast f/1.4 aperture and great high ISO performance of the D3s, I could handhold the camera without a flash and still get very sharp images of the Touareg's grille and VW badging with the party-goers blurred out in the background.