Exellent clean example of this classic legendary lens
NIKON NIKKOR 105MM F2.5 AUTO 'P' PORTRAIT LENS
IN EXELLENT LITTLE USED CONDITION
COMPLETE WITH ORIGINAL HOOD AND CAPS
CLOSE FOCUSSING TO 1 METRE
The Nikkor 105 2.5 lens is one the most famous Nikon lenses of all time. On the cover of a Time/Life book about photography from the 70s there was an image showing the iconic equipment of a photojournalist these days. A worn canvas bag, a handheld incident light meter, a few rolls of Kodak Tri-X film, a Leica M3 with a 35 mm lens – and a Nikon F with a 105 2.5 lens.
The Nikkor 105 2.5 has a long history. It was introduced 1959 and became a favourite among Nikon photographers from the start. Several more versions of the 2.5 were introduced over the years.
Physically the lens is well made as all Nikkor AI lenses, and of course all metal, except for the rubber on the focus ring (and the glass obviously). It is a little beefier and heavier than the 85 2.0 AI I reviewed here, but relative compact and light compared to todays AF lenses. The weight is 430g and it takes of course 52 mm filters, the vintage Nikkor standard.I tried the lens on a DX camera, a Nikon D7000 which gives the FOV of a 157 mm lens (1.5 crop factor x 105mm), making it a little less suited for portaits and short tele use than its intended FOV on a FF camera.After I have tried some other AI lenses there was little doubt in my mind that the 105 would perform well. The weakest point being some light hints of CA on bright contrasty surfaces. Otherwise the resolution is impressive. This design is based on the Xenotar-type lens (5 lenses, 4 groups) with thick, convex lenses, rather than the Sonnar type with its many asymmetric components. From the left, there is a convex lens, a cemented lens consisting of a very thick convex lens and a concave lens, and then a convex and concave pair after the stop.
Compared to the previous model with Sonnar type lens construction, it offers significant improvements in close-range aberration fluctuation, as well as peripheral light, spherical aberration and coma. In particular, it delivers a beautiful balance of focused and defocused (blurred) images, as well as higer resolution with natural gradation. The Xenotar-type lens design with the ideal aberration correction made it the perfect lens for portraits.
An anecdote back from the era of the Nikkor Auto lenses. There was a lens that delivered incredibly sharp resolution, but the defocus image (blur) was not so good. particular lens branded the whole Nikkor Auto family with a reputation of having bad defocus images, especially in Japan.
As the Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 demonstrates, however, at the same time Nippon Kogaku K.K. was also making lenses offering the perfect combination of defocus image, tonal rendition and gradation. LINK http://imaging.nikon.com/history/nikkor/5/index.htm
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