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  1. #1
    Senior Member
    crycocyon's Avatar

    Talking Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)
    It's been a while since I posted here (ie: years lols), nice to see the forum is still so active. I was so busy buying Sigma lenses the past two years but this is something I think worthy to show because it is so hard (at least for me) to find really good reference of these old lenses. I recently acquired the Nikon (Nikkor) 400mm f2.8 AI-S and 800mm f5.6 AI-S. As some of you might recall, I used to have the 300mm f2.8 AI-S and did some bird photography with it. I'd like to get back into nature/wildlife photography so there was a guy selling a full set of telephotos all almost mint and I missed the 600mm f4 and 200mm f2 so I got these two as consolation lol. My plan is to explore their capability and compare them to more modern AF lenses. For example I might get a Sigma 300-800mm and compare with that as I think there might be something to be said for simpler optical formulas. Plus I plan to compare these lenses against each other as I also got the 1.4x (Nikon TC-14B) and 2x (Nikon TC-301) teleconverters.

    So here's the breakdown of focal lengths etc with converters:

    400mm f2.8
    1.4x = 560mm f3.9
    2x = 800mm f5.6

    800mm f5.6
    1.4x = 1120mm f7.8
    2x = 1600mm f11.2


    Here are the two lenses as they arrived in their hard cases.

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400and800cases.jpg

    Here are the two lens cases opened, with the 400mm f2.8 on the left and 800mm f5.6 on the right.


    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400and800mmincase1.jpg

    Closeup of the 400 in the case

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400mmincase1.jpg

    Closeup of the 800mm in the case

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-800mmincase1.jpg

    Here's the 400mm f2.8 AI-S with Nikon D800

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400mmd8501.jpg

    Here it is with the 2x doubler on

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400f2.8aiswith2xandd850.jpg

    And now the 800mm f5.6 AI-S on the D850

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-800mmd8501.jpg

    And with the 2x

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-800f5.6aiswith2xandd850.jpgNikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-800f5.6aiswith2xandd850b.jpg

    Here are the two standing side by side, 400mm on the left with the D800 and 800mm on the right with the D850

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400and800mmstanding.jpg

    On the weekend I got a Manfrotto 393 gimbal head, so here is the 400mm on it.

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400f2.8aisandd850b.jpg

    Another shot

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400f2.8aisandd850a.jpg

    And a few other angles so see how it is balanced with the 2x TC-301 added.

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400f2.8aisandd850e.jpgNikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400f2.8aisandd850f.jpgNikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400f2.8aisandd8502xb.jpg

    So it will be fun to get the time to put these through their paces.


    › See More: Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)
    Thanks/Like FredKingston, Danno Thanks/liked this post
     
    "There is only you and your camera. The limitations in your photography are in yourself, for what we see is what we are."
    - Ernst Haas

    Nikon D850
    w. MB-D18 grip
    Nikon D800
    w. MB-D12 grip
    Nikon F4s
    Sigma 35mm 50mm 85mm 105mm
    all f1.4 DG HSM Art
    Nikon 50mm, 85mm f/1.4 G
    , 24mm Ai-S f/2.8, 55mm Ai-S f/2.8 Micro Nikkor,
    Nikon 400 f2.8/800mm f5.6 AI-S, Helios lenses, etc.



  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Needa's Avatar

    Re: Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)
    Certainly don't want to be using those on a neck strap. Should be interesting to see the results.
    Last edited by Needa; 07-13-2020 at 01:27 PM.
    Thanks/Like crycocyon Thanks/liked this post
     

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Browncoat's Avatar

    Re: Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D

    NASA called. They want their telescopes back.

    That is some NICE glass, holy cow.
    Thanks/Like crycocyon Thanks/liked this post
     

  4. #4
    Staff
    Super Mod
    hark's Avatar

    Re: Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D

    Yikes! That 800mm is a Bazooka of a lens! Hope you've been doing some strength training on your arms to carry it!
    Thanks/Like crycocyon Thanks/liked this post
     
    Cindy
    Flickr
    and My 2020 Thread

    Where the Spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art
    -- Leonardo da Vinci



  5. #5
    Senior Member
    FredKingston's Avatar

    Re: Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D

    Cool stuff... How much do those lenses actually weigh?

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    crycocyon's Avatar

    Re: Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D

    Here's a quick rundown of basic specs (and for curiosity comparing them to the Sigma 800mm and 300-800mm):

    Nikon 400mm f2.8 AI-S
    5,150g or 11.35 lbs
    163mm wide x 378.5mm long
    8 elements in 6 groups with 1st and 2nd elements being ED glass
    min focus 13.1 ft

    Nikon 800mm f5.6 AI-S
    5,400g or 11.9 lbs
    163mm wide x 546mm long
    8 elements in 6 groups with 3 ED elements
    min focus 26.2 ft

    Sigma 800mm f5.6 Apo EX DG HSM
    4,900g or 10.80 lbs
    157mm wide x 521mm long
    12 elements in 9 groups with 2 ELD elements
    min focus 23 ft

    Sigma 300-800mm f5.6 Apo EX DG HSM
    5,880g or 12.96 lbs
    157mm wide x 544mm long
    18 elements in 16 groups with 2 SLD elements
    min focus 19.7 ft
    Last edited by crycocyon; 07-14-2020 at 02:04 AM.
    "There is only you and your camera. The limitations in your photography are in yourself, for what we see is what we are."
    - Ernst Haas

    Nikon D850
    w. MB-D18 grip
    Nikon D800
    w. MB-D12 grip
    Nikon F4s
    Sigma 35mm 50mm 85mm 105mm
    all f1.4 DG HSM Art
    Nikon 50mm, 85mm f/1.4 G
    , 24mm Ai-S f/2.8, 55mm Ai-S f/2.8 Micro Nikkor,
    Nikon 400 f2.8/800mm f5.6 AI-S, Helios lenses, etc.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    crycocyon's Avatar

    Re: Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)
    I got a new Feisol Elite CT-3372 carbon fiber tripod and put the Nikon 800mm f5.6 AI-S on it with the Nikon TC-301 2x converter, again with the Nikon D850. Please excuse the low quality iphone photos.

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-img_3330b.jpg

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-img_33322b.jpg

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-img_3331_2b.jpg

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-img_3289b.jpg

    I actually took a studio portrait with the 400mm f2.8 (no converter) and it turned out surprisingly good (from 30 feet away). Now I just need to find time to shoot the moon.
    Last edited by crycocyon; 07-18-2020 at 08:59 AM.
    Thanks/Like STM, alpine_56 Thanks/liked this post
     
    "There is only you and your camera. The limitations in your photography are in yourself, for what we see is what we are."
    - Ernst Haas

    Nikon D850
    w. MB-D18 grip
    Nikon D800
    w. MB-D12 grip
    Nikon F4s
    Sigma 35mm 50mm 85mm 105mm
    all f1.4 DG HSM Art
    Nikon 50mm, 85mm f/1.4 G
    , 24mm Ai-S f/2.8, 55mm Ai-S f/2.8 Micro Nikkor,
    Nikon 400 f2.8/800mm f5.6 AI-S, Helios lenses, etc.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    STM's Avatar

    Re: Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D

    And I thought my 600mm f/4 was a beast, that 800mm f/5.6 is HUGEMONGOUS.

    My 400mm f/2.8 ED-IF AIS arrived in the mail today and it is a beauty! It fills out my stable of "Beasts"; 200nn f/2, 300mm f/2.8, 400mm f/2.8 and 600mm f/4 ED-IF perfectly. Unlike my 600mm f/4, the 400mm f/2.8 is handholdeable.


    Compared to the 600mm f/4:
    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-400-vs-600-comp.jpg
    Thanks/Like crycocyon Thanks/liked this post
     
    FTn, F2A, FT2, F4E, D850, D500, D750

    8-15mm f/3.5-4.5 AFS, 15mm f/3.5 AIS, 16mm f/2.8 AIS, 18mm f/3.5 AIS, 24mm f/2.8 AIS, 24mm f/2 AIS, 25-50mm f/4 AIS, 28mm f/2.8 AIS, 35mm f/1.4 AIS, 35-70mm /3.5 AIS, 50mm f/1.8 AIS, 50mm f/1.4 AIS, 50-135mm f/3.5 AIS, 55mm f/2.8 AIS Micro, 85mm f/1.4 AIS ,135mm f/2 AIS, 80-200 f/4 AIS, 105mm f/1.8 AIS, 105mm 2.8 AIS Micro, 180mm f/2.8 AIS, 200mm f/2 AIS, 200mm f/4 Micro AIS, 300mm f/2.8 AIS, 400mm f/2.8 ED IF AIS, 500mm f/8 Reflex, 600mm f/4 ED-IF AIS

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    crycocyon's Avatar

    Re: Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)
    Quote Originally Posted by STM View Post
    And I thought my 600mm f/4 was a beast, that 800mm f/5.6 is HUGEMONGOUS.

    My 400mm f/2.8 ED-IF AIS arrived in the mail today and it is a beauty! It fills out my stable of "Beasts"; 200nn f/2, 300mm f/2.8, 400mm f/2.8 and 600mm f/4 ED-IF perfectly. Unlike my 600mm f/4, the 400mm f/
    Congratulations on the 400mm 👍🏻 well it's ok for a few minutes but it's still hefty...after all it's only half a pound less than the 800mm lol. Ya i'm still hoping to get a 600mm f4 AI-S as that was my first choice. Nice collection you have there. Would love the 200mm f2 as well. Ya the 800mm is probably overkill but i have big plans for mine 😁. Would you consider getting one someday? It's interesting how the 800 and 400 have really around the same dimensions up front but both are still second to the front element of the 600mm 😳 which i'm guessing is similar to a 300mm f2. Of all the lenses i like the proportions of the 400mm the most.

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-8dd3a561-371a-44bf-a756-95820926dafb.jpg
    "There is only you and your camera. The limitations in your photography are in yourself, for what we see is what we are."
    - Ernst Haas

    Nikon D850
    w. MB-D18 grip
    Nikon D800
    w. MB-D12 grip
    Nikon F4s
    Sigma 35mm 50mm 85mm 105mm
    all f1.4 DG HSM Art
    Nikon 50mm, 85mm f/1.4 G
    , 24mm Ai-S f/2.8, 55mm Ai-S f/2.8 Micro Nikkor,
    Nikon 400 f2.8/800mm f5.6 AI-S, Helios lenses, etc.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    STM's Avatar

    Re: Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D

    Quote Originally Posted by crycocyon View Post
    Congratulations on the 400mm  well it's ok for a few minutes but it's still hefty...after all it's only half a pound less than the 800mm lol. Ya i'm still hoping to get a 600mm f4 AI-S as that was my first choice. Nice collection you have there. Would love the 200mm f2 as well. Ya the 800mm is probably overkill but i have big plans for mine . Would you consider getting one someday? It's interesting how the 800 and 400 have really around the same dimensions up front but both are still second to the front element of the 600mm  which i'm guessing is similar to a 300mm f2. Of all the lenses i like the proportions of the 400mm the most.

    Nikon Nikkor 400mm f2.8 and 800mm f5.6 AIS ... a modern view ( w Nikon D800 and D850)-8dd3a561-371a-44bf-a756-95820926dafb.jpg
    The 200mm f/2 ED-IF is a beast too. It is nearly as long as the 300mm f/2.8 but is heavier due to having more and larger/heavier glass but the IQ is amazing! I think I will pass on the 300mm f/2!
    Thanks/Like crycocyon Thanks/liked this post
     
    FTn, F2A, FT2, F4E, D850, D500, D750

    8-15mm f/3.5-4.5 AFS, 15mm f/3.5 AIS, 16mm f/2.8 AIS, 18mm f/3.5 AIS, 24mm f/2.8 AIS, 24mm f/2 AIS, 25-50mm f/4 AIS, 28mm f/2.8 AIS, 35mm f/1.4 AIS, 35-70mm /3.5 AIS, 50mm f/1.8 AIS, 50mm f/1.4 AIS, 50-135mm f/3.5 AIS, 55mm f/2.8 AIS Micro, 85mm f/1.4 AIS ,135mm f/2 AIS, 80-200 f/4 AIS, 105mm f/1.8 AIS, 105mm 2.8 AIS Micro, 180mm f/2.8 AIS, 200mm f/2 AIS, 200mm f/4 Micro AIS, 300mm f/2.8 AIS, 400mm f/2.8 ED IF AIS, 500mm f/8 Reflex, 600mm f/4 ED-IF AIS





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