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The Nikon 24mm f/3.5D ED PC-E Nikkor is a Ultra-wide, Perspective Control (PC) lens featuring tilt, shift and rotation capability, perfect for architectural and nature photography. Wide shifting range, plus or minus 11.5mm, with a tilting range of plus or minus 8.5 degrees. It has revolving capability of plus or minus 90 degrees for versatile tilt/shift shooting effects.
Three ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass elements offer superior sharpness and color correction by effectively minimizing chromatic aberration.
I definitely have a love/hate relationship with this lens. The love part is great. Very sharp lens, relatively wide range of movements, very solid construction. The CA (chromatic aberrations) are also very well controlled. It just feels significant in your hand as it should be as this is most decidedly a professional lens. Now for the hate part. First off, the knob to adjust the shift of the lens is ok, the locking knob for the same movement is way too small, making it very difficult for me to lock the movement in place. It's actually easy to over tighten this control and consequently strip the locking knob. This actually happened to me and it took Nikon 4 months for them to repair it. They indicated to me that I had actually caused the damage myself - go figure. They finally gave me a new lens and it hasn't given me much trouble so far. That was 5 months ago. Second, when the camera orientation is changed for a vertical shot, it suddenly becomes very easy for the tilt mechanism to slide downwards toward the ground unless FIRMLY locked. Again, over tightening this control could present problems as well. All in all, a very good, solid lens, which definitely requires a tripod and knowledge of view camera movements to get the most out of it. If used as a straight 24mm wide angle lens, it is possible to hand hold this beast of a lens. Contrary to popular belief, this lens works flawlessly on the D700. You just need to be a little cautious when rotating the lens. Still waiting for Nikon to come out with a 16mm or 18mm version of this lens.
It's been only a few months, but this lens had already become my favorite wide-angle for landscapes and cityscapes in tandem with my D3. The perspective control is allowing me to do things I was not able to previously, not only correcting perspective, but also being able to shoot near-far compositions with good dof at moderate apertures. The combination of low noise @ high ISO on my D3 and moderate aperture allows me to shoot high shutter speed HDR's under less than optimal conditions outdoors (windy!) and still render excellent subject detail. The only reason I don't give it 5 stars is because the set screws to hold the shift and tilt settings are not large or robust enough to hold the shift and tilt settings under all conditions (walking around etc.). This shouldn't be considering the cost of this lens. Other than that, this is an excellent lens.
One of the best wide angle lenses I have ever owned. I don't need the tilt at 24mm, and I wish they could relocate the button to unlock the rotation of the lens.
I've owned the 85 PC Micro for several years and have used it in a variety of settings. I recently acquired the 24 PC and it is a stellar performer. Having used 4 X 5 view cameras for almost thirty years it is a pleasure to have similar movements and yet to get instant feedback. I use the lens on both a D700 and a D300S. The lens is sharp with high contrast and the close focus distance enables some unusual landscapes.
How many times have you purchased a lens and had second thoughts? It has taken me a few years to finally convince myself to buy the Nikon 24mm PC-E. I am very happy with the lens. Using a D700 I read that the lens when rotated will strike the camera body - which it does. However, I just rotate the lens the other direction, placing the larger knob underneath if I need to shift up. Technically this is a fantastic lens and when coupled with a D700 or D3/x your aperture readout is automatic. This is a manual focus lens and requires you to start in the "Default" position to acquire your meter reading before shifting or tilting - It takes just a little practice (retraining yourself). I catch myself having to reset the lens to default sometimes because I forget to get the meter reading first. For those who visit and use your manual settings of your camera you can almost guess the shutter/aperture after seeing the results in your display if you forget; but it is best to get the reading before you do the tilt or shift the lens for your base and go from that. This is a very fun and useful lens, I now realize why it is so sought after by those who shoot landscapes and architect. Level your camera, and shift the lens up (not your camera) to include more sky or down to include more ground, no more tilting your camera and seeing weird converging lines with trees or buildings that fall back from the center. You can also swing the lens left or right to create effects blurring the edges while keeping the center in sharp focus + you can rotate the lens in increments which causes the shift and swing to rotate as well, creating some amazing effects. The lens takes a couple of days to get used to so I spent the entire weekend with this attached to my camera trying to fully explore the new jewel. I mostly do nature photography and have thus far enjoyed the clear, crisp and colorful photos this lens has captured. Some small quirks; The tensioning knobs are kind of small with the shift tensioner requiring more force to lock down the lens once set. The lens does not work "perfectly" with a D700 but I knew that and it just a matter of rotating the lens in the other direction. Pros: Built to Nikon Standards - Solid through and through. Sharp and contrasty. Fairly easy to use - takes a few days to train yourself. Great Results with pleasing images.
I am always happy with the way this lens renders a subject. My only grief is that Nikon doesn't offer the 14mm in a PC lens or I'd buy it too. This lens is contrasty and sharp with great color. It's fun to use and gives great results.
I bought this lens to work on a documentary and architecture project. With it, I've discovered a new way to shoot, showing off the greatness of spaces surrounding me or the subjects. Lately, I've been using it to also shoot objects close up. The shapness is amazing!
This is a great lens and so sharp and accurate it's a dream come true. We waited for this lens and it lived up to all expectations..
For conditions where you can take the time to set up the tilt and perform the manual focus, this is a fantastic lens. I have found all sorts of applications to take images that could not be achieved with a regular lens. Yes, it's expensive, but wow! It allows me to get images that many photographers cannot achieve, even with software. Using does take some practice. However, there is a neat iPhone app available that can be used to help get the settings in the ball park prior to looking through the lens. That is quite helpful. Do be careful with the rotating release lever, as it is close to the lens release lever!
Very little distortion, vignetting and lateral color fringes. Using Lightroom and Photoshop I developed scripts to batch correct the very little distortion their is on this lens ( just about +0.5 ), color fringes and vignetting also are corrected very easily since their is none at center point ( no shift/tilt ). As for tilt and shift movements, when they are applied, I leave a comment on pictures with rise/fall and left/right shift to correct them accordingly. So what's left to say is that this lens is perfect for architecture. The drag and feel of all the adjustments (focus, aperture, rise and tilt) is just perfect. Someone did their homework. Everything is easy to move and it stays put. Controls do feel like they could be bigger, but if you consider replacements are available from Nikon then this is no problem. They did consider the fact that not everybody owns a D3 ( for clearance ).