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Nikkor Z 28mm F/2.8 SE Lens Review - Performance

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Nikon Nikkor Z 28mm f/2.8 SE Performance

Nikkor Z 28mm F2/8 SE

Shooting DX (crop) format, central sharpness is outstanding from f/2.8 to f/11 and excellent at f/16. The edges are outstanding from f/2.8 to f/8, excellent at f/11 and very good at f/16.

Shooting FX (full-frame) format, central sharpness is excellent at f/2.8, outstanding from f/4 to f/8 and excellent at f/11 and f/16. The edges are excellent from f/2.8 to f/8, very good at f/11 and good at f/16.


Nikon Nikkor Z 28mm f/2.8 SE MTF Charts

How to read our MTF charts

The blue column represents readings from the centre of the picture frame at the various apertures and the green is from the edges.

The scale on the left side is an indication of actual image resolution and sharpness as LW/PH and is described in detail above. The taller the column, the better the lens performance.

For this review, the lens was tested on a Nikon Z fc and Nikon Z 7 II using Imatest. Want to know more about how we review lenses?


CA (Chromatic Aberration) is measured with in-camera corrections switched off, as far as we can know anyway. The DX results are approaching zero both centre and edge. The FX results are showing some CA at the edges, but nothing too severe and nothing that readily shows in images. Further correction is always available in-camera or using software.


Nikon Nikkor Z 28mm f/2.8 SE Chromatic Aberration Charts


How to read our CA charts

Chromatic aberration (CA) is the lens' inability to focus on the sensor or film all colours of visible light at the same point. Severe chromatic aberration gives a noticeable fringing or a halo effect around sharp edges within the picture. It can be cured in software.

Apochromatic lenses have special lens elements (aspheric, extra-low dispersion etc) to minimize the problem, hence they usually cost more.

For this review, the lens was tested on a Nikon Z fc and Nikon Z 7 II using Imatest.


Flare is virtually non-existent. During the review process, it proved very difficult to induce any artefacts at all and there is certainly no loss of contrast against the light.

Distortion is also impressively absent, and the lens is virtually rectilinear, the figures measured being +0.10% pincushion on DX-format and +0.01% pincushion on FX-format. Most macro lenses do not perform this well.

Bokeh is also very smooth and pleasant, it is a lens that gives a nice even gradation to those out of focus backgrounds.

Vignetting is present but very modest, the figures being given in the table:


Aperture APS-C DX Full Frame FX
f/2.8 -1.3 -2.6
f/4 -1.2 -1.7
f/5.6 -1.2 -1.4
f/8 -1.2 -1.4
f/11 -1.1 -1.4
f/16 -1.1 -1.3



Nikon Nikkor Z 28mm f/2.8 SE Sample Photos



Nikon Nikkor Z 28mm f/2.8 SE Aperture range

You can view additional images in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review, photos and product ratings.

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pablophotographer 11 2.1k 431
22 Sep 2021 12:33AM
So in FX format it delivers nearly the equivalent of Ricoh GRIIIx 40mm lens.

alan53 15 United Kingdom
22 Sep 2021 3:00PM
"Actual" resolution is higher for FX format?
22 Sep 2021 3:35PM
Yes Alan, because the FX camera is capable of higher resolution and lens tests are measuring the total system of lens plus camera. That's why the explanatory "excellent" or "very good" are still put in the reviews, to summarise the performance.
22 Sep 2021 5:57PM
I am not into the Nikon Mirrorless system (yet) but will buy into it soon . For now I shoot Nikon dslrs and a Sony a7siii.
I think this optically is a brilliant lens and love the look of the se . Reminds me of my 28mm f/2.8 ais that I adore.
I do wish it was built without so much plastic. Some parts inside in the long run just should be metal . I do realize modern plastics are lasting much longer.
Id get this lens and the 40mm when I start building my Z system.
I am so super impressed with the Nikon lens lineups performance as a whole . Much so over Sony in many ways. Sony is sacrificing compactness over other optical qualities sometimes. One is distortion and Nikons f/1.8 line is larger but better corrected here.

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