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Nikon D800
Nikon D800

LENS: D800 + AF-S 105/2.8G ED-IF VR Macro

The reader is strongly advised to read the lens evaluation notes.

Quick summary

The Nikon AF-S 105mm f/2.8G VR macro offers very good performance here (but past experience shows that it falls short of the Zeiss 100/2 Makro-Planar or Leica 100/2.8 APO-Macro-Elmarit-R).

As a macro lens, the 105/2.8G VR is likely optimized for close range performance, not this more distant example. While it performs quite respectably here, it is most definitely not my preferred lens for distance shooting at this focal length. Micro contrast is very good over most of the frame, but the limitations are clear; it would start to feel strained with a higher resolution camera.

Stop it down to ƒ/5.6 - ƒ/8 for optimal results over the frame. Aperture ƒ/16 is degraded by diffraction and can be used if absolutely needed, but ƒ/22 and ƒ/32 are strongly blurred.

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Since 2006, Diglloyd Advanced Photography is the authoritative review and reference for DSLRs and their lenses: Canon and Nikon primarily, but also Pentax and some medium format. Reviews of key DSLRs are included, but the primary focus is on lens performance. Also included is a wealth of technique and workflow approaches.

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Aperture series 2.8, 5.6 available in full article
Nikon 105mm f/2.8G ED-IF VR macro

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