Nikon’s Z 180-600mm f/5.6-6.3 VR is an inexpensive monster of a lens

Jun 21, 2023

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

Nikon’s Z 180-600mm f/5.6-6.3 VR is an inexpensive monster of a lens

Jun 21, 2023

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

Join the Discussion

Share on:

For a lens with a focal length of 180-600mm, one would expect to spend a lot money. Especially so with a lens that happens to feature built-in stabilisation. Sure, lots of cameras have IBIS now, but IBIS combined with lens stabilisation is almost always going to provide the best final result. But Nikon’s new Nikkor Z 180-600mm f/5.6-6.3 VR lens (buy here), while still not cheap, by any means, is much less expensive than I was anticipating.

Aimed at wildlife, sports and aircraft photographers, the lens $1,699. That’s pretty reasonable. And while the shortest end of the focal length range might be a little longer, it’s $300 cheaper than Sigma’s 60-600mm f/4.5-6/3 DG DN OS Sports lens (buy here). Given that Nikon isn’t even really competing with Sigma, this is a pleasantly surprising price from Nikon.

YouTube video

With a focal length of 180-600mm, it starts off already quite telephoto at the short end. But as you rack that focal length from 180mm up to 600mm, the lens never changes length thanks to an internal zoom mechanism. It offers up to 5.5 stops of optical image stabilisation or “Vibration Reduction” (VR), as Nikon calls it. You only seem to get this when using a full-frame Nikon body, however.

Nikon’s full-frame mirrorless cameras all feature IBIS. Their APS-C mirrorless cameras, on the other hand, don’t. You can, of course, use this lens on APS-C bodies, but without the advantage of IBIS, the stabilising power will be diminished somewhat. Nikon doesn’t specify how much wobble-stopping power you use without a body containing IBIS.

Nikkor Z 180-600mm f/5.6-6.3 VR Specs

Focal Length180-600mm
Max aperturef/5.6-6.3
MountNikon Z
FormatFull-Frame
Focus TypeAutofocus
Minimum Focus Distance1.3m @ 180mm to 2.4m @ 600mm
StabilisationNikon VR (5.5 stops on full-frame)
Filter Diameter95mm
Dimensions110 x 315.5mm
Weight1,955g

Price and Availability

The Nikon Nikkor Z 180-600mm f/5.6-6.3 VR lens is available to pre-order now for $1,699 and is starts shipping in mid-July.

Filed Under:

Tagged With:

Find this interesting? Share it with your friends!

John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

Join the Discussion

DIYP Comment Policy
Be nice, be on-topic, no personal information or flames.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *