Nikon Series E lens review

With five prime lenses 28mm, 35mm, 50mm, 100mm and 135mm
Three zoom lenses 36-72mm, 75-150mm and 70-210mm

Or is this a Nikon E Lens review?  These lenses were manufactured in the early 1980s and were sold alongside Nikon Nikkor lenses in the same and/or similar focal length range.  These E Lenses were an economic substitute for the Nikkor lenses, so were often at the time, and are now, seen as poor and lightweight* substitutes for what was the real thing, ie Nikkors.
Although Series E lenses were of a less complex design they still incorporated  Nikon NIC multicoating on all glass surfaces.
*Due to the use of engineering plastic in the barrels of all fixed focal length lenses, this is no longer a valid argument when considering the extensive use of plastics in todays lenses.

It was rumoured at the time that these lenses were made by subcontractors and were in fact made by a company called Kiron (Kino Precision Industries).  Outsourcing lens manufacturing to other companies was not unusual at that time.  In fact some of these lenses appear to be exactly the same as lenses bearing the Vivitar name, with matching focal lengths as well as apertures.

Personally I own three E lenses and it does not concern me that these may have been made by a different manufacturer.  A lot has been made of the fact that these lenses only bear the word Nikon lenses, rather than Nikkor lenses.  However I would ask, what is a name if a product performs equally well?  I can vouch that they do.  I use these E lenses on a Nikon DX camera body with stunning results.  C has Nikkor lenses to the same focal length as my E lenses, and has done, and will happily use my E lenses if his are not available, as he finds the results are the same.

The stunning results may have something to do with the fact that these are FX lenses or full frame 35mm film lenses being used on a crop factor camera body.  What this does is use the centre part of the lens construction to register and focus light upon the sensor.  The way lenses are designed and manufactured, the brightest sharpest, most contrasty part of any lens construction is always in the centre of the lens body, with the outer edges being often slightly softer.  So, by using a full frame lens on a crop sensor body, I am using the best part of the lens construction.  Obviously with a crop factor of 1.5 the magnification ratio for the focal length of the lens does change.  This will be the subject of another post at a later date.

So from my personal experience  I am personally happy to recommend using older E series lenses on either FX camera bodies or higher end DX camera bodies.

After much research the lens to own is in fact the 100mm, which I never have, although I would love to review one should I ever be able to purchase one.

In conclusion of this review, we at GCM are not in the league of mega pixel chasing.  We only wish to use the best quality lenses and equipment that we can afford.

Nikon-35mm-E                                                          Nikon Series E 35mm f2.5

Nikon-50mm-E                                                       Nikon Series E 50mm f1.8

Nikon-70-210-E                                                      Nikon Series E 70-210mm f4

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