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Lens review

Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S

23 September 2020
Maciej Lata││o

6. Distortion

The previously tested Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/4 S was criticized for limitations it imposed on the camera body when it came to distortion correction, The f/2.8 model, designed for professionals, doesn't do it and for two reasons. Firstly, it's not exactly a good idea to impose limitations when you deal with professional photographers and you try to sell them an expensive piece of equipment. Secondly, the optics of the more expensive Nikkor 24-70 mm tries to correct distortion so there are no reasons to hide any shameful performance, like in the case of the f/4.0 model. As a result, distortion of the tested lens looks the same on JPEG and RAW files and, accordingly, there's no need to discuss it separately for both types of the files.

When you limit yourself to dimensions of the APS-C/DX sensor distortion won't be especially bothersome but it will remain visible all the same. You can notice it without any problems at the shortest focal lengths where you deal with slight barrel distortion. At 24 mm they amount to −2.53%, at 28ámm they decrease to −1.49%, and become practically zero at 35ámm where, officially, we got a result of just −0.12%. At the longer part of the focal range you deal with pincushion distortion – at 50 mm it amounts to +0.86% and at 70 mm it reaches +1.13%.

After passing to full frame distortion level increases but not significantly. It was achieved by introducing slight moustache deformations and we prove that much in a while.


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At 24 mm distortion calculated for the whole frame amounts to −3.47%; however, if you limit yourself to the 1:1 marking area you get −4.24%. Moustache distortion is also visible at 28 mm focal length – when it comes to full frame you get a result of −2.02%, and inside 1:1 markings that value increases to −2.71%.

At 35 mm focal length distortion becomes almost zero again (officially we got +0.32%) and then it increases with lengthening of the focal length. At 50 mm you get a level of +2.12% and at 70 mm a result of +2.64%.

Such results aren't perhaps anything admirable but you should be pleased with the producers anyway – after all they have allowed the lens to correct distortion just a bit. In our opinion that joined effort of lens and camera software is a far better approach than leavint the task of distortion correction completely to the camera.

Nikon Z7, APS-C, JPEG, 24ámm
Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S - Distortion
Nikon Z7, APS-C, JPEG, 28ámm
Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S - Distortion
Nikon Z7, APS-C, JPEG, 35ámm
Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S - Distortion
Nikon Z7, APS-C, JPEG, 50ámm
Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S - Distortion
Nikon Z7, APS-C, JPEG, 70ámm
Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S - Distortion

Nikon Z7, FF, JPEG, 24ámm
Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S - Distortion
Nikon Z7, FF, JPEG, 28ámm
Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S - Distortion
Nikon Z7, FF, JPEG, 35ámm
Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S - Distortion
Nikon Z7, FF, JPEG, 50ámm
Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S - Distortion
Nikon Z7, FF, JPEG, 70ámm
Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70 mm f/2.8 S - Distortion