Lens review

Nikon Nikkor Z MC 50 mm f/2.8

5 July 2021
Maciej Latałło

3. Build quality

The following chart presents a comparison between basic parameters of the Nikkor Z MC 50 mm f/2.8 and other full frame 2.8/50 macro lenses. When it comes to physical dimensions and weight the Nikkor fits the whole group pretty well even though it contains, along with the Sigma, the highest number of optical elements. Its filter thread, though, remains the smallest.

In the photo below the Nikkor Z MC 50 mm f/2.8 is positioned between two other Nikkors designed for DSLR's, the AF 50 mm f/1.8D and the AF-S 85 mm f/1.8G.

Nikon Nikkor Z MC 50 mm f/2.8 - Build quality

The tested lens starts with a metal mount surrounding contacts and a flat rear element, 27 mm in diameter. The element is hidden about 1 cm inside the barrel and doesn't move. The area close to it is properly blackened and matted; the surrounding tube features a lot of ribs, so from this side everything looks perfect.

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Nikon Nikkor Z MC 50 mm f/2.8 - Build quality

The proper body of the lens is covered by plastics. Its first part is occupied by a smooth, immobile ring with an array of different features. Looking from above you see an inscription 'Nikkor' and 'MC 50/2.8'. On the right you find the logo of the company, on the left there are two switches. The first of them – A/M – is used to control the focusing mechanism working mode; the second allows you to set the autofocus range. You can choose between the full range (FULL) and a limited one, from 0.16 to 0.30 of a meter. On the other side of the ring there is also a serial number of the device, information that it was produced in China and its autofocus range (∞ - 0.16m/0.53ft).

Nikon Nikkor Z MC 50 mm f/2.8 - Build quality

The smooth ring, described above, increases its diameter and turns into a manual focus ring, 26 mm wide, completely covered by rubber ribs. Next to it you can't find any distance or DOF scale. The ring, a focus-by-wire construction, moves smoothly and is properly damped; its focus throw amounts to an angle of over 360 degrees. It is a very high value, allowing you very precise settings.

Nikon Nikkor Z MC 50 mm f/2.8 - Build quality

Then you see a smooth, immobile ring with the name and basic parameters of the lens.

The front element is 20 mm in diameter and it moves – it extends forward, along with the whole front optical system, on a uniform tube. At the end of that tube you get a non-roating filter thread, 46 mm in diameter. After passing to the minimum focusing distance the extended tube is over 2.5 cm long and on its surface you can find distance markings at 0.16, 0.17, and 0.19 m, along with respective distances in feet and three reproduction ratios, 1:1, 1:1.4, and 1:2.

Nikon Nikkor Z MC 50 mm f/2.8 - Build quality

When it comes to optical construction you deal here with 10 elements positioned in 7 groups. One element is made of low dispersion ED glass, another one is aspherical. The front element is covered by fluorite coatings. Inside you can also find a round aperture with nine blades that can be closed down to a value of f/22 at the maximum.

Buyers get in the box: both caps, a small hood marked as HN-41, and a soft pouch for the lens.

Nikon Nikkor Z MC 50 mm f/2.8 - Build quality