Review Nikkor Z 58mm f/0.95 S Noct part II
The Lab test
In the lab test, the Noct did extremely well, better than any lens I tested before (I tested hundreds of them, even though most reviews are not published there. I will publish more and more of them here though.) The test only confirmed what I saw while making the pictures of the doll. The sharpness measured is almost the theoretical maximum in combination with the Z 7 and that sharpness is maintained for a large part of the image, even wide open.
What the graph shows, is that resolution is very high even in the corners to begin with. Micro contrast is extremely high as well, except for the corners at the widest apertures, but that changes very quickly when stopping down. The lens complies with the standard rule for lenses, that after stopping down two to three apertures a lens is almost optimal. With the Noct that is already between f/2 and f/2.8! The corners are a lot smaller than the part of the image that is cut off with film (16: 9). With film, the lens achieves the highest sharpness at 8k at every aperture. This only decreases due to diffraction at f/11. There are also very few aberrations: no astigmatism, almost no coma or lateral CA, low axial CA and low distortion (although it is normally corrected in the camera or software).
Image quality: 10
Value for money 8
Note on scores: 10 is the highest, 0 lowest. Why 10 here? Because for an f/0.95 full-frame standard lens, doing better than much slower lenses is an absolute achievement.
About the graph
The graph displays two things: resolution in center, border and extreme corners (green, red and blue lines) and (micro)contras (yellow: center, violet: border/corners). Resolution is simple: high contrast test charts that make it easy to read the exact lp/mm. Resolution is measured in both sagittal and meridional direction and the percentage is calculated based on the lowest resolution. Test distance is 100 x focal length and more, where it’s important also closer and at larger distances. Micro contrast may not be a scientific term, but here it indicates how well low contrast details around 10 lp/mm are displayed (in fact between 3 and 20 lp/mm). The contrast of the image as a whole (so on very coarse details) can be high, yet the micro contrast relatively low. The percentages indicate the maximum for the sensor the lens tested with. For full frame, in rare cases where I don’t have a camera with about 45 megapixels, I use interpolation to adjust the percentage to 45 megapixels, but since it’s a percentage the differences are a lot smaller than you’d expect anyway. The best lenses will reach about 90% in the corners at the optimal apertures, many even don’t reach 80%.
Mount: Nikon Z
Focal length (mm): 58
Lens groups/elements 17-24
Maximum aperture: f/0.95
Aperture blades: 11, rounded
Closest distance: 0.5 m
Dimensions: 153 x 102 mm
Weight: 2.0 kg
Price: approx. $ 8,000.- / € 9.000,-