NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S in use
Image courtesy: Nikon

Nikon has announced a new super-telephoto prime lens for full-frame Z cameras, the NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S. It’s a focal length ideal for wildlife, sports, fast action and distant portraits. Nikon also says it’s the smallest, lightest 400 mm prime it’s ever created.

Here are seven top features of this new lens:

Compact design

Nikon NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S
Image courtesy: Nikon

For a super-telephoto prime lens, the NIKKOR Z 400mm is compact and lightweight. It weighs around 2.5 pounds and is a little over 9 inches in length. Nikon suggests that the NIKKOR Z 400mm is small enough to keep attached to your camera while walking around.

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Balanced handling

Nikon has designed the NIKKOR Z 400mm to keep the lens’ center of gravity closer to the camera body, which makes it easier to track, pan and stop smoothly. You can also hold the lens more comfortably when shooting handheld.

S-line image quality

NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S and camera
Image courtesy: Nikon

The NIKKOR Z 400mm has Nikon’s Nano Crystal Coat to significantly reduce ghosting and flare. The lens also had Super ED, ED and SR glass to control chromatic aberration from the center to the edge of the image. Whether you are shooting video or stills, Nikon says that the outstanding resolving power of the NIKKOR Z 400mm delivers images with beautiful bokeh, color, contrast and clarity.

Optical stabilization

As a VR lens, the NIKKOR Z 400mm has powerful, in-lens optical stabilization to keep your shots steady. Nikon states that the lens’s optical stabilization gives you a 5.5-stop advantage. In addition, if you use the lens with Nikon’s Z 9 camera, the Synchro VR feature gives you up to 6.0 stops of compensation.

f/4.5 maximum aperture

A maximum aperture of f/4.5 might not seem very wide compared to some of the lenses many video shooters use to get shallow depth of field. However, the NIKKOR Z 400mm is a new super-telephoto prime lens. As such, Nikon says that with the f/4.5 aperture, you will get beautiful bokeh and dramatic depth of field to isolate subjects from your backgrounds.

Fast autofocus

Image shot with the Nikon NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S
Image courtesy: Nikon

Nikon says that the NIKKOR Z 400mm has fast, accurate and exceptionally quiet autofocus. The company also says that tracking is smooth whether shooting rallycross or birds and wildlife.

Weather sealing

The NIKKOR Z 400mm has advanced weather sealing and a rubber gasket that keeps dust, dirt and moisture out of all moving parts. The lens also has Nikon’s fluorine coat, making it easy to wipe the front lens element clean.

Availability

The NIKKOR Z 400mm f/4.5 VR S is available to pre-order now and is priced at $3,249.

Pete Tomkies is a freelance cinematographer and camera operator from Manchester, UK. He also produces and directs short films as Duck66 Films. Pete's latest short Once Bitten... won 15 awards and was selected for 105 film festivals around the world.