Nikon Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 Review

August 17, 2020 | Mark Goldstein | Rating star Rating star Rating star Half rating star


The Nikon Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 is a remarkably small and lightweight full-frame lens, featuring a clever retractable design that ingeniously only requires a twist of the zoom ring to enagage.

In terms of image quality, the Nikon Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 is sharp in the centre if you stop down a little, although performance at the edges is not quite as good - pretty much what you'd expect from this kind of lens.

Bokeh is surprisingly nice despite only having 7 aperture blades, while the 35cm minimum focusing distance makes the lens more versatile than you might expect, although the 0.17x maximum reproduction ratio limits macro photography.

On the negative side, the 2x zoom range obviously restricts opportunities for telephoto shooting, there's no built-in vibration reduction, instead relying on the 5-axis in-body system offered by the Z5 camera, and the available maximum apertures throughout the zoom range are on the slow side.

We found the auto-focusing to be a little sluggish at times, the all-plastic construction also encompasses the lens mount, and there are no available external controls other than the manual focus ring, which has to double up as the customisable control ring.

A price-tag of £439 / $399 seems pretty high for a mere kit lens, however small and compact it is. It makes much more sense when bought in a kit with the Z5 camera, which inevitably is where most people will buy it.

Overall, the Nikon Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 is most notable for its size, or lack of, offering a 2x zoom range in a cunning retractable design and decent enough image quality to boot. There are quite a lot of negative points, as outlined above, but for wannabe Nikon Z5 owners who don't already have any compatible lenses, it certainly makes a good starting point.

3.5 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4
Features 3.5
Ease-of-use 4
Image quality 3.5
Value for money 3.5