Nikkor AF-S 16-35mm f/4 G ED VR (FX) - Review / Test Report - Sample Images & Verdict
Lens Reviews - Nikon / Nikkor (full format)

Sample Shots

The following sample shots were taken with a D3x and RAW-converted via CaptureOne 4.8. The image of the trees with 1/4s exposure time was shot handheld with VR enabled.

Click on a thumbnail to view the original file (opens in a separate window).

Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 31.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/400s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 16.0mm
Aperture: f/9.0
Exposure 1/320s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 22.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/250s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 20.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/400s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 16.0mm
Aperture: f/9.0
Exposure 1/80s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 16.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/500s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 21.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/400s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 18.0mm
Aperture: f/4.0
Exposure 1/1000s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 26.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/400s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 31.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/250s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 16.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/320s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 35.0mm
Aperture: f/4.0
Exposure 1/500s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 23.0mm
Aperture: f/9.0
Exposure 1/4s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 16.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/100s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 16.0mm
Aperture: f/9.0
Exposure 1/250s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 16.0mm
Aperture: f/4.0
Exposure 1/800s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 16.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/200s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 35.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/400s

Verdict

The Nikkor AF-S 16-35 VR is a very good pro grade ultra wide zoom lens that shows excellent resolution in the center, very good border and corner at medium focal lengths, but lacks border and corner sharpness at the shortest and longest focal lengths. Distortion is rather hefty at 16 mm, but well under control above this zoom setting. Both vignetting as well as CAs show acceptable to good values for an ultra wide zoom lens, nothing to rave about, but certainly no show stoppers either. The build quality is excellent and in line with other professional Nikkor lenses.

Even if it's still a good lens, this is probably not the level of performance many had expected from it, especially regarding corner sharpness. However, for many it might nonetheless be the more attractive lens compared to the Nikon AF-S 14-24, since it has also a few strong selling points. First of all, it has a front filter thread and that feature alone will make it more appealing to anyone intending to use ND, IR or CPL filters on a regular basis. VR will also be more useful than a large aperture for those who need to shoot stopped down to increase depth of field in low light. Last but not least, the lens is not completely free of flare, but it needs strong backlight with the sun either inside or just outside of the frame to produce visible flare. No comparison to the AF-S 14-24 in this regard, which seems to bend the sunlight from almost anywhere to produce flare spots.

So, in summary the lens delivers mostly solid performance, without being really outstanding in any discipline.

Optical Quality:    
Mechanical Quality:
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