Nikon, Nikkor 500mm f/4G ED VR AF-S Lens Review

This super telephoto lens is a huge lens, it is slightly smaller and lighter than the 600mm f/4, and can be regarded as just hand holdable. However, it is far more comfortable on a tripod with a gimbal type mount. The excellent VR with this lens does help to make it hand holdable and maintain sharp images.

A tripod mode helps to reduce vibration when the lens is used on a tripod and also when used hand held. The A/M focus mode will allow instant switching from autofocus to manual focus, even during AF servo operation. The rounded diaphragm opening of 9 blades, gives an excellent bokeh.

The latest version of this lens is a wonderful performer, particularly in respect to sharpness and contrast. I prefer this lens over the 600mm f/4 as it is slightly smaller and slightly lighter. This lens performs excellentlywith the three current Nikon teleconverters, TC-1.4E II, TC-1.7E II and TC-2.0E III. When used with the TC-2.0E III teleconverter, we have a 1,000mm f,8 lens of reasonable size and weight.

This is a great lens for birding and wildlife photography, but can be very tiring to use due to its weight, if used for long periods without a tripod. A monopod and a gimbal mount is a great addition to this lens. The lens is also great for some types of sporting events.

This lens is similar to the 600mm f/4, is extremely sharp and will give better image quality than the 200-400mm f/4, but is slightly larger, when it is used with a teleconverter.

Lens Specification:

  • Lens Construction 14 elements, 11 groups, 3 ED glass elements, 1 nano crystal coating, 1 meniscus protective lens,
  • Picture Angle FX, 5°,
  • Picture Angle, DX, 3°10′,
  • F stop range 4 to 22,
  • Closest focusing distance 4.0 metres,
  • Maximum reproduction ratio 0.14,
  • Filter size 52 mm, internal,
  • Lens hood, HK-34,
  • Lens case CT-504,
  • Dimensions 139.5 x 391 mm,
  • Weight 3,880 grams.