Nikon Announces NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S

Outdoor Photography

Nikon today introduced a relatively compact super-telephoto prime for its Z mirrorless system, the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S. The lens is a great option for wildlife and sports photographers who want a super-telephoto option that’s much lighter and more affordable than the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/2.8 TC VR S.

Photo of the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S

NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S

The NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S weighs just 2.55 pounds—about 60 percent lighter than the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/2.8 TC VR S at 6.5 pounds. It’s also much shorter at 9.2 inches in length versus 15 inches with the larger f/2.8 lens. The smaller, lighter design will make the lens much easier to shoot with handheld, and it includes built-in Vibration Reduction for up to 5.5 stops of image stabilization, or 6 stops when used with a Nikon Z 9 and that camera’s Synchro VR technology.

The lens is compatible with Nikon Z TC-1.4x and TC-2.0x teleconverters to achieve focal length equivalents up to 800mm. As an S-Line lens, the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S includes premium optical elements and extensive weather sealing. It also offers a Memory Recall capability to instantly return to a preset focal distance with the press of a button on the side of the lens.

Image illustrating the weather sealing locations of the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S

Weather sealing of the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S

Availability is expected next month, July 2022, with a list price of $3,249. That’s $10,750 less than the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/2.8 TC VR S. For additional details, see the press release below.

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Nikon releases the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S super-telephoto prime lens for the Nikon Z mount system

Compact and Lightweight Super Telephoto Lens with Superior Sharpness and Clarity

MELVILLE, NY (June 29, 2022) –Today, Nikon Inc. has announced the release of the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S, adding yet another lens to the growing NIKKOR Z line. This super-telephoto prime lens is compatible with full-frame/FX-format Nikon Z mount mirrorless cameras, and offers both superior sharpness and clarity with a compact size and lightweight design.

Handheld shooting is easy with the lightest1 weight in its class, approximately 2.55 lbs (1,160 g, excluding tripod collar), and a total length of approximately 9.2 inches (234.5mm) providing superior agility and reducing fatigue over extended shooting sessions of wildlife, birds and sports photography. This lens is also compatible with the Z TELECONVERTER TC-1.4× and the Z TELECONVERTER TC-2.0×, expanding the ability to bring distant subjects even closer2. In addition, the lens offers excellent balance by shifting the center of gravity closer to the camera for more stable operation during handheld shooting.

The NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S belongs to the S-Line lens series that pursues the ultimate in optical performance, and is constructed with one ED glass element, two Super ED glass elements, and one SR lens element. This contributes greatly to the compact size and light weight while delivering superior optical performance in which chromatic aberration is suppressed. The adoption of Nano Crystal Coat also contributes to effectively reduce ghost and flare effects, achieving clearer images and accurate depiction of even the finest details of distant subjects.

With a maximum aperture of f/4.5, the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S realizes three-dimensional rendering that makes the intended subject stand out. It is also equipped with an optical vibration reduction (VR) mechanism that provides a superior compensation effect equivalent to shooting at a shutter speed 5.5 stops3 faster, which is the highest among NIKKOR Z lenses4, in addition, a stepping motor (STM) supports fast and precise AF control for certain capture of erratically moving subjects, such as sports.

Primary Features:

  • Handheld shooting is easy with the lightest weight in its class of approximately 1,160 g (excluding the tripod collar) and a total length of approximately 234.5 mm.
  • Focal length can be extended to 560 mm with the Z TELECONVERTER TC-1.4× and 800 mm with the Z TELECONVERTER TC-2.0× (both released in August 2020), while maintaining outstanding resolution.
  • Employs an optical vibration reduction (VR) function with an effect equivalent to a shutter speed 5.5 stops faster, which is the highest among NIKKOR Z lenses. When paired with the Nikon Z 9, optical VR can be combined with in-camera VR for even more powerful camera shake compensation—equivalent to a shutter speed 6.0 stops5 faster with Synchro VR.
  • Designed with consideration for video recording, including a focus-breathing compensation function which effectively reduces shifting of the angle of view when focusing, and stable exposure.
  • The employment of an STM ensures high-speed and accurate AF with quiet operational sounds.
  • Superior dust- and drip-resistant performance6 and anti-fouling performance with the adoption of fluorine coat.
  • Employs the Memory Recall function7that instantly recalls focus positions that have been stored in advance, via pressing an assigned button.
  • Nikon’s original Nano Crystal Coat is adopted to effectively reduce ghost and flare effects.
  • Chromatic aberration is significantly reduced via the adoption of one ED and two Super ED glass elements. In addition, the adoption of an SR lens element controls short-wavelength light that is difficult to compensate, achieving highly precise chromatic aberration compensation.

Pricing and Availability

The NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S lens will be available starting in July 2022 for a suggested retail price (SRP) $3,249.95*.  For more information about the latest Nikon products, including other NIKKOR Z lenses and the entire collection of Z series cameras, please visit nikonusa.com.

Specifications, equipment, and release dates are subject to change without any notice or obligation on the part of the manufacturer.

  1. Among f/4.5 and slower lenses, including those with a focal length of 400 mm, for interchangeable-lens cameras equipped with a full-frame (35mm [135] equivalent) image sensor available as of June 29, 2022. Statement based on Nikon research.
  2. AF performance may deteriorate depending on the subject, brightness and focus position regardless of the camera body, causing inaccurate focus, slow focusing speed or flashing of the focus indicator.
  3. Based on CIPA Standard. This value is achieved when attached to a camera with full-frame/Nikon FX-format sensor, with the camera’s VR function set to “NORMAL”.
  4. As of June 29, 2022.
  5. Based on CIPA Standard. With the camera’s VR function set to “NORMAL”.
  6. Thorough dust and drip resistance is not guaranteed in all situations or under all conditions.
  7. The cameras compatible with this function are the Z 9, Z 7II, Z 6II, and Z 30 only at the timing of the product release. When using the function, the firmware for cameras must be updated to the latest version. For other models, this function will be supported via later firmware updates.

*SRP (Suggested Retail Price) listed only as a suggestion. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time.

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