Review Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6

For the opportunity review of the lens Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210 1: 4-5.6 Many thanks to Oleg Muravitsky.

Review Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6

Review Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6

The Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6 is a good old 'dark' telephoto zoom lens from film cameras. The zoom ratio of the lens is exactly 3h. There are three Nikon autofocus lenses in the 70-210mm class:

  • Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4 - Nikon's first ever autofocus telephoto zoom lens. It was produced only in Japan. Interesting constant aperture and internal type of zoom. Non-D version.
  • Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6 (MKI) - The second version of the lens from Nikon class 70-210mm. It already has a different optical scheme. Only available in Japan and became not a replacement for the MKI version, but an addition. This lens is presented in this review.
  • Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6D (MKII) - third version. Optically exactly the same as MKI, just upgraded to version D type lens. It was produced in Japan and Thailand. You can find more details about the differences from MKI here.
Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6 side view

Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6 side view

Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6 has a piston design. In order to change the focal length of the lens (zoom), you need to pull or push the front of the lens. The piston grip is very comfortable, the ribbed surface of the piston control ring turned out to be plastic. But the ribbed surface of the focus ring is made of rubber. Unlike single-ring lenses, the Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6 has two rings that share the focus and zoom tasks. Personally, it’s more convenient for me to use single-ring piston lenses, where one ring is responsible for both focusing and zoom, an example of such a lens is Nikon ED 80-200mm f / 2.8D AF Nikkor (MKII)... The pump mechanism of the lens forces the rear lens to move, which creates the effect of a vacuum cleaner - and this threatens with excess dust in the middle of the camera.

Nikon 70-210 rear view

Nikon 70-210 f4-5.6 - back view

It's important: auto focus with this lens is available only when using him on cameras with built-in motor focusing.

Exact list Nikon DSLR cameras with a built-in focus motor, on which this lens will focus automatically:

Exact list Nikon DSLR cameras without a built-in focus motor, on which this lens will not focus automatically:

Only auto focus and sound confirmation of focus will not work with these cameras, all other important functions, such as automatic exposure metering and automatic iris control, will work well.

You will find a lot of useful information on the types of cameras and lenses Nikon here.

Enlightenment Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm F4-5.6

Enlightenment Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm F4-5.6

Important: the lens has an aperture control ring. In order for the lens to start working normally on modern cameras, you need to set the F / 32 value using the aperture control ring on the lens itself, while the aperture control ring is automatically locked by a special lock button. This button has an orange color, it is easy to find on the lens near the iris control ring. After such a manipulation, it will be possible to control the diaphragm from the camera, like with modern lenses, in more detail in the section on Non-G Lenses.

Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm F4-5.6 lens at 210mm and MDF

Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm F4-5.6 lens at 210mm and MDF

Auto focus on the lens is slow. When focusing, the front element rotates around its axis and moves forward 2 cm. The focus ring rotates a little more than 90 degrees. I did not find any problems or nuances in the auto focus. The only thing you need to remember is that the lens decently buzzes when automatically focusing. Autofocus speed is exactly the same as Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4. At 70 mm focal length, the lens focuses a little faster than 210 mm.

Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm F4-5.6 aperture

Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm F4-5.6 aperture of the lens aperture and the appearance of the lens indicators

The lens has a focusing distance scale and two indicators for working in the infrared spectrum for 70 and 105mm focal lengths. It's a pity, but the lens lacks a depth-of-field scale. The number of diaphragm blades is 7 pieces. The lens itself weighs 590 grams and uses 62mm color filters. Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6 can use lens hood NH-24which is screwed in instead of a light filter. I really liked that the lens is enough compact.

Two brothers 70-210

Two brothers 70-210

The disadvantage of the lens is the spontaneous protrusion of the trunk, the focal length lock button on the lens is not provided. Sometimes, when you sharply set the focal length to the extreme position, you can hear a strong metal ringing. Some disadvantages of the lens are fully compensated by the image quality from it and the price / quality ratio.

Two televisions 70-210

Two televisions 70-210

Examples of photos on FX:

Sample photos on DX (EGF is 105-315mm):

Personal impressions of the lens

Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6 I like a lot more than modern plastic animals Nikon 55-200mm f / 4-5.6G ED AF-S DX VR Nikkor and Nikon 55-200mm f / 4-5.6G AF-S Nikkor. There is something nice about old lenses, and it's not just the metal mount and metal part of the case. Old AF lenses have a kind of their own charm. Now used Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm can be bought for just $ 150 Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm is very suitable for outdoor use on a clear day. Most importantly, the Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm has a nice design, not much worse than that of Nikon 70-210mm f / 4 AF Nikkor. Most likely, the small popularity of Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6 and Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6D is due to the fact that there are more attractive models of lenses with a range of focal lengths of 70-300mm and the presence of an image stabilizer.

Who has experience with this lens, unsubscribe in the comments.

All Original Similar Nikon FX Telephoto Lenses

Below is a list of all Nikon Nikkor telephoto lenses without high aperture and with auto focus support:

  1. Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4, 1986-1987
  2. Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1:4-5.6, 1987-1993
  3. Nikon AF Nikkor 75-300mm 1:4.5-5.6, 1989-1998
  4. Nikon AF Nikkor 80-200mm 1:4.5-5.6D, 1991-1999
  5. Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1:4-5.6D, 1993-2000
  6. Nikon AF Micro Nikkor 70-180mm 1: 4.5-5.6D ED, 1997-2005
  7. Nikon AF Nikkor 75-240mm 1:4.5-5.6D, 1999-2000
  8. Nikon AF Nikkor 70-300mm 1:4-5.6D ED, 1998-2006
  9. Nikon AF Nikkor 70-300mm 1:4-5.6D, 1998-2006 (?)
  10. Nikon AF Nikkor 70-300mm 1:4-5.6G, from 2000 to 2014, black or silver
  11. Nikon AF S Nikkor 70-300mm 1:4.5-5.6G ED VR IF SWM, from 2006 to 2017
  12. Nikon AF S Nikkor 70-200mm 1: 4G ED SWM VR IF N Nano Crystal Coat, from 2012 to the present day
  13. Nikon AF-P Nikkor 70-300mm 1:4.5-5.6E VR ED, 2017 to present

The names of the lenses are indicated according to their spelling on the case.

Comments on this post do not require registration. Anyone can leave a comment. Many different photographic equipment can be found on AliExpress.


Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6 is a solid old full-frame zoom telephoto lens. Provides good image quality for a modest price. Behaves well both on crop and full frame. I recommend it for simple photo tasks.

Material prepared Arkady Shapoval. Training/Consultations | Youtube | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Telegram

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Comments: 133, on the topic: Review of Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6

  • DV

    Well, finally. Thank you for the review, as always interesting and pleasant for acquaintance))

  • Lynx

    Arkady, can you ask a question a little off topic? Examples of photos in the review - are they jipegs “at standard settings” or raves, with which they then somehow worked and processed? It is very interesting that it is “out of the box” such delicious colors, or “you still have to tinker with it”.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      From D80 - all originals, converted from RAW with ViewnX2, added only shadow protection. From d700 - all originals, converted from RAW with ViewnX2, added only shadow protection, except for photos of the girl, there is bw in Photoshop. In general, how I prepare a photo for the site is written here - (section - sample photos).

      • anonym

        thank you! Apparently you still need to learn to work with the Ravas.

    • Oleg Muravitsky

      The color in the pictures from this lens does not require correction, at least on my D90. I just draw the picture in the shadows, because I shoot in sunny weather with EV -1 to avoid overexposure.

  • Kate

    Cool pics, but 70-300 is better!

    • Arkady Shapoval

      70-300 VR and costs more) is much more expensive)

  • AM

    I would like to clarify a little - the pump-action zoom is more convenient with a large FR range - after all, turning the ring from 28 to 300 is very difficult and not very fast, however, the ring method is more accurate and, it seems to me, does not “kill” the lens mechanics so quickly.
    All the best!

    • anonym

      Advise guys urgently which lens to buy both Nikans 70-210 4-5.6 or 70-300 4-5.6 without BP I have Nikon D 90

  • Oleg Muravitsky

    I bought this lens in general for 800 UAH. It looks like it fell, but it works without problems, although the retractable part responsible for focusing is a little loose. The pump mechanism contributes to the suction of dust, and after the purchase there was a lot of it (it is not for nothing that this design is also called a "vacuum cleaner"), but, fortunately, partial disassembly and blowing-wiping is done easily.
    I bought it in the winter and at first did not "taste" it, I even thought over time to change it to something better, but now I threw these thoughts away. Glass is excellent for sunny weather and is sharp enough and the background blurs very nicely, here are some more examples:

    • anonym

      lilac of this color doesn’t happen it is lilac work with balance manually or buy sony

      • anonym

        Adepts of Sony they are)
        PS With lilac everything is fine, there may be problems in the monitor, so to speak, on your side.

  • Ivan

    The lens pleased. Nice drawing. Juicy colors. And boke as a zoom is good, in some frames it’s very good.

    • Oleg

      Bokeh does not depend on zoom, but on aperture and focal length

      • 23

        Bokeh is very dependent on the optical design of the lens.

  • far apart

    Arkady, good afternoon. The photo was pleased with its color rendering. .Only in the ISO data, some kind of confusion ... Everywhere ISO is overestimated, but in the photo of a chestnut it is 1800, and with a squirrel in general 4000 ...

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Why the mess? Just high ISO values, this is due to the fact that in the control settings, I set the shutter speed to 1 / 400s so that there are no greases at 210mm.

  • Alex

    Wash a wonderful lens, given its price on the secondary. For seven hundred (considering its unpretentiousness to glasses) an excellent budget option. I’ve been driving this for a year now.

    Here is something from him:

  • anonym

    What can you say about the image quality of the Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4 VS Nikon AF Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6D?

    • anonym

      these lenses are completely different leagues - 70-210 f4 are a cut above in all respects.

      • Michael

        Yes, do not la la. All these are fairy tales.

  • ardmi

    I didn’t like it at all in conjunction with the d7000, it doesn’t “resolve” a large number of matrix pixels. a completely different matter 70-210 f4 and 80-200 f2,8

  • Alain

    Nice dark lens. bought in the winter, immediately did not really like it. but for the summer just right. sharp, excellent color rendition. the only thing is not very: auto focus is slow and loud, and how difficult it is for me (a girl), without stabilization. hands get tired quickly. but for that kind of money (500 UAH per hand) a super purchase.

    • any

      as for 500grn. ? I also want to buy for so much

  • Paul

    selling to anyone interested! 100 cu

    • bessarabkin

      Pavel, who sells the lens, drop your contact phone number on my soap

  • Alexey

    Arkady, as well as readers of Radozhiva, I am asking you this question: how bad (good) is this lens in conjunction with the Nikon D7000? Is he really that bad as ardmi writes? How much better in sharpness in this case will be (or will not) be his older brother 70-210 / 4 and is there a difference in price difference (is it possible to buy 70-210 / 4-5,6 for 140 cu, and 70 -210/4 for 300 cu)?

  • Alexey

    In addition to my previous post:
    Everything is known to be learned by comparison. From autofocus I can only compare with whale 18-105, from non-autofocus - Nikkor 105 / 2,5, Tair 11A, CZ Jenna Sonnar 135 / 3,5, Zenitar M 50 / 1,7. Of these non-AF in terms of sharpness, I think Nikkor 105 / 2,5 and Zenitar are the best.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      70-210 / 4 is a very solid lens, it's worth the money, I recommend it.

  • Oksana

    Arkady, good afternoon. Have you ever met such a beast: Nikon Quantaray NF AF 70-210mm F4-5,6? Will he be on my Nikon D90? I was very attracted to the FR, on my crop it should be a glorious telephoto. Thanks in advance for your reply!

  • Oksana

    I'm taking off the question about Quantaray: these are Sigma glasses, which were produced under a different name for the American Ritz stores (I think they were called that). Now I'm wondering whether to take it to my Nikon D90 ... Nowhere is there a good review with test shots, alas ...

  • Jurgen

    Good day, I (suddenly!?) Popped out the retractable part from the lens, I’m afraid to climb in, but can I do something at home. I looked - everything seemed to be in order, no bolts or nuts spilled out - and he falls out, advise - TO GET IN DESPAIR - or do you need to fasten something?

  • Oleg

    Differs from MKI with aperture lock button and focus speed.
    Probably meant from MK2

    • Arkady Shapoval


  • Nikita

    Just the other day, got a Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6. No words to express satisfaction.
    I chose honey Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4 and Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6. They are both good. 1: 4-5.6 is a little younger by the years of release and today it is cheaper than 150 USD (the one that is older than 250 USD) I like it more. Since they write that 1: 4 at 150-210 washes away and you have to press it to 4.5 - 5.6. As a result, Mon. what to get the same interchangeable aperture ratio 1: 4-5.6. What can I say, on the D90 carcass (and this is a capricious carcass) I got the most elegant colors, the drawing is not just sharp, but a detailed volumetric reading. These colors do everything, they are as they are, but somehow amazing. The BB question on the D90 is a thing of the past. Probably such colors can be given by a Nikon or Kenon lens for 1000-1500 bucks, and that is in doubt.
    As for the design, here is a question for Nikon. You have a masterpiece why humiliate yourself why drive this shitty plastic. The lens should not contain any motors, electronics, cables, etc. Only metal and glass. My specimen is years old. 20. The trunk does not fall out, the AF drive does not hum. Focusing is normal, as it should be on drive lenses. I will give one solid piece of advice. If someone tells you that Tamron or Sigma will give Nikon a head start, spit in his face. At the end of the last century, Nikon was the leader in the field of photo optics, this is a worthy example of Nikkor 70-210mm 1: 4-5.6
    Good luck.

    • Novel

      70-210 4,0-5,6 on focal lengths 150-210 mm also "pidmilyu" and it is also possible to privatize the diaphragm (seemingly from a great deal). That is why keruvatisya is a fact with a choice of 70-210 4,0-5,6 and 70-210 4,0 on my dummy is not varto.
      I use 70-210 passes for 1) menshu masu, 2) menshі dimensions. You can also buy the "D" version, which means you can focus better.
      The offense is ob'ktiva varti of that, why should they repent.

  • R'RёS,R ° F "RёR№

    Does it make sense to take a dx camera? I like to photograph with manual lenses, is there a tele-n 200, will there be confirmation of the focus as a green dot? Thanks.

    • Igor

      I like it, it will be, and it is possible to do without Doden wedges. At least in d90 I can do without them. If suddenly anyone is interested - link to the metal hood

  • Siarhey

    Will he need a hood? Tell me please. The rest from Belarus.

    • Igor

      Yes, a hood is very desirable, weak in the backlight, but at the same time, one of the most beloved glasses (compared to the whale, poltos and 85). I’m shooting on d90, I had to buy a hood, color rendition and sharpness at a height, I wanted to change it to 28 3 series, compared, I realized that it’s not worth it (there are 85 to kill the background, but this TV set beautifully blurs it, taking into account the price).
      P.S. One of the few glasses from which I print directly without processing. By the way, the zoom is not so slow, at least I always managed to “freeze” my one and a half year old daughter)
      P.P.S. Hello from Minsk.

  • Cuba

    Tell me where to buy.

  • Sasha's


  • Sergei

    Tell me how in combination with the D7000? who tried? can take pictures on

    tell the impression of the lens.

    • Novel

      Having tried on nikon d80 and nikon D7000. I will not wait until fasting if I have not turned on the d7000 matrix. Ob'ktiv is even tough. Having shown excellent results on both cameras (I’ll wait for positive comments, said here about 70-210 4,0-5,6). Varto nagolositi on the fact that in the whole object on the focal 150-210 the sharpness and contrast of the image falls flat (it seems that the situation is also promoted at 70-210 4,0 and 80-200 2,8). For the principles of shortage of respect, it is not a matter of war, but simply accept the specialness of the mother on respect in the event of a crisis.

  • Jury

    Good time to all. The site is simply excellent, picked up something new, and expanded its knowledge about something that, like, it seemed, but a little superficially. And now the question itself. There are three lenses: 18-105, 28-100 \ 3,5-5,6 (kit from the film player) and the subject itself. Carcass D90. It was noticed that 70-210 on the focal 70 gives a larger scale than 18-105 and 28-100 with the zoom also set to 70 mm. Moreover, the scale is significantly larger. Those two give almost the same scale, the difference is only in the accuracy of the focal setting. Because of what such a picture could be that?

    • Novel

      I think that the price is tied together, so that the markup is ob'yktiviv at the rate of 18-105 chi 28-300 є "let's clear it up". Such situations are satisfied with the part. I changed the scale from 70-210 4,0-5,6 and 18-70 3,5-4,5 and 16-85 3,5-5,6. The situation is similar to the one described by you. Larger scale can also be nikon 50 1,8D, tamron 17-50 2,8. I think that tamron is really dumb 50 at the “distant end” (even less). It is very similar to other assets. And markuvannya type "18-70" to shy for that do not write, for example, "18-68,5" (round off). Sound marvelous, Ale Hai will try to explain it more beautifully ...

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