Nikon AF-S Nikkor 20mm f/1.8G ED Review

October 13, 2014 | Mark Goldstein | Rating star Rating star Rating star Rating star Half rating star


The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 20mm f/1.8G ED is a high-quality, compact and relatively affordable wide-angle lens for full-frame Nikon DSLR users, although it lacks any form of weather-sealing and optical image stabilisation.

The Nano Crystal Coat successfully prevents any contrast loss attributable to veiling flare, even if it cannot fully eliminate the kind of reflections that are inherent with ultrawide lenses. Chromatic aberrations in particular are very well controlled, geometric distortion is impressively low for an ultrawide lens (unless you are focusing very close). Centre sharpness is good at the maximum aperture, and excellent from f/2.8 onwards, although you need to stop down to f/4 to get acceptable results at the edges of the frame. The only other issue is corner shading at maximum aperture, but this is something every full-frame shooter has to put up with, especially when using wide angles.

The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 20mm f/1.8G ED will most appeal to photographers who want to explore the creative possibilities that arise from a combination of shallow depth-of-field and an ultrawide angle of view, who really need the extra stops of light to capture moving subjects in very low light, or those that value the extra image quality offered by a prime lens. The new Nikon AF-S Nikkor 20mm f/1.8G ED certainly delivers on those promises.

4.5 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4.5
Features 4
Ease-of-use 4
Image quality 4
Value for money 4.5