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Nikon (Nippon Kogaku K K) Nikkor-P.C 1:2.0 f=8.5cm (RF Nikkor 85mm f/2.0)
Telephoto lens for Nikon S-Mount Rangefinder cameras - Part IV


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Nippon Kogaku K.K. / Nikon Nikkor-P.C 1:2 f=8.5cm lens w/ black lens barrel for Nikon Rangefinder cameras Year Introduced: 1956; Discontinued: probably 1964/5

Along with the advantage of exposure given by the western media as well as established comfort level of photographers who had tried out the Nikkor lenses; I guess one important step in finding the real footing for Nikon was the timely release of the
Nikon S2 in 1954. Prior to its debut, the adoption of an odd format in the previous Nikon S-bodies has hindered the progress of both camera/lens system for new Nikon users - even if they were impressed with the optical quality in the line of Nikkor lens group. The S2 had provided a path for entry for others to consider using a Nikon or even changing the system from Leica or Contax. Another equally important element was, Nikon had always kept on refining their system accessories as well as exploring other possibilities which including expanding the Nikkor lens family with more options and lens varieties to serve different photographic needs. For an example, the Nikkor went wider picture angle with new releases of W,Nikkor 1:4 f=2.5cm (1953), W.Nikkor 1:3.5 f=2.8cm (1952), faster lenses additions such as W,Nikkor 1:2.5 f=3.5cm, (1952); Nikkor-S 1:1.5 f=8.5cm (1951), Nikkor-P 1:2.5 f=10.5cm (1953) as well as improving the Reflex Housing to cater for better handling of longer focal length lenses. The long telephoto lens group actually also had new additions during this period such as the exciting new daring attempt by Nikon to take on Zeiss's 180mm f/2.8 Olympia Sonnar with the Nikkor-H 1:2.5 f=18cm (1953) and a fast speed super telephoto lens, Nikkor-T 1:5 f=50cm (1952) etc. So, Nikon had actually emerged itself as a serious competitor with substance in both camera and optical excellence in attempt to create an opening into the traditional German stronghold as supplier for 35mm photographic equipment.

A lovely and well captured photo/picture of  Nikkor-P 10.5cm and 8.5cm telephoto lens mounted on Nikon SP 2005 - photography by Jon Mitchell
Here comes the sun, do du du tu..... -Beatles -

Credit: Image copyright 2008 Jon Mitchell® from Australia. Image Copyright 2008. All rights reserved. You can access Jon's portfolio at Flickr for more creative visual. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.
 
While Nikon was still selling their chrome lenses; there were a few new releases in the Nikkor lens family that might have some significant with the decision with the introduction of the black barrel design. Although the Nikon S2 was the first Nikon S-model that had produced a small batch of black bodied model, but I think export market for other brands may also be part of the reason for such a move. Among the telephoto lens group, the first which had adopted the new black barrel design was the Nikkor-S 1:1.5 f=8.5cm counterpart; similarly, the ever popular Nikkor-P 1:2.5 f=10.5cm was another. Please take note: BOTH of the mentioned medium telephoto lenses were new inclusion in the Nikkor lens family and they were introduced natively with the standard look of the black barrel design that were used by other short/medium models that followed. So, it was equally interesting to note Nikon had reacted pretty late in giving Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm with similar outfit. You can call it as lens update but similarly, Nikon was also using this general lens updating program with the new design to re-brand itself. With a compatible black S-body, they match well and very eye-appealing indeed in such a combination. The black barrel in mid section on chrome design also making it acceptable when such a lens is mounted onto a chrome S-body.

Before we go on further, all you need to know is, there are actually two versions in the black barrel Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens. You don't have to worry if you have already had a version in your collection as the differences between the two are not very significant. The early model has a thinly ridged aperture, focusing and lens mounting rings, the last of the batch has a slightly deeper ridge pattern on ring. This was aimed to improved lens handling with a better grip on control feature. The next difference is the shorter from chrome ring at the front end, that is all. Internally, the optical structure for both lenses are identical. The author of An illustrated History of Nikon rangefinder cameras, Mr. Robert Rotoloni has suggested the S/N for the latter (newer) models begin from 496000 onwards. So,if you are very particular with version history before on your purchase decision, you may use these info as a rough guide.
   
Black lens barrel version (early 1st series) of  Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens for Nikon rangefinder cameras Black lens barrel version (late/newer 2nd series) of  Nippon Kogaku (Nikon) Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens for Nikon rangefinder cameras
So, there were three stages in the development of the Nikkor-P 85/2 and this illustration photo is very useful to show the differences among them. Technically, all the three models only vary in their respective cosmetic appearance and/or minor changes which may indirectly relates to lens handling. Lastly, newer models are slightly weigh lighter. The preference on black or chrome can be entirely individual.

Comparing three versions of  Nippon Kogaku (Nikon) Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens for Nikon rangefinder cameras
Credit: A lovely comparison picture on the three versions of Nikkor-P 8.5cm f/2.0 was scanned and retouched from Nikon RF Magazine Photographer: ®

Worn off plastic area
Personally, I would rate the second version as having the best in built quality and a good representation of mechanical engineering offered during the era. I am not sure if a thinner width of the respective rings are more logical method but undeniably, the slightly deeper recessed ridged pattern offer a better and more positive grip control. Next, I have always been thinking the broader, all-metal lens mounting ring found on the Nikkor-P 10.5cm f/2.5 (refer to the photo at the top taken by Jon Mitchell) by far offers the best lens handing property but strangely, it was not being replicated on other Nikkor lenses.

Rear section lens mount with diaphragm stopped down to f/32 Front section lens element shows with diaphragm stopped down to f/32 on Nikkor-P rangefinder telephoto Front section lens element shows with diaphragm opens up to f/2.0 on  a Nikkor-P rangefinder telephoto

The diaphragm when stopped down to minimum aperture of f/32 (left REAR & center /FRONT)

Diaphragm at full aperture (rear view)


Black lens barrel version (late 2nd model/ series) of  a Nippon Kogaku (Nikon) Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens for Nikon rangefinder cameras (with newer plastic lens cap and black metal snap-on lens hood)
Naturally, some of the accompanied accessories originally designed for the chrome version were also being updated in black as matching color. A simple example is the lens hood (see the photo at left). In fact, it involved the front, rear cap as well where typically, the all chrome front/rear cap used in the earliest version went through changes with anolydized metal , screw-in and the last version was in fact had used a more fragile plastic cap in a different Snap-On design (see photo). Similarly the solid all-chrome lens hood with the original that provides reversible storage, screw-in type had changed to black finish in similar fashion but the last batch (as shown) uses a simpler to operate Snap-On design.

Credit: Image(s) courtesy of Collectible Cameras®. The company is more well known as another popular RITZ Camera it has a huge inventory for many used collectible equipment of major camera labels. Image copyright © 2008. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

Contax mount version, Black lens barrel model of a Nippon Kogaku (Nikon) Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens for Nikon rangefinder cameras
Contax-mount black barrel version Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens

Here are two Contax-mount version of the Nikkor-P 85/2. The one shown at the left carries S/N 399351 while the unit shown at the bottom came with S/N 400052. Both of them represents the early stage of change from chrome to black barrel design type. Except for the marginally shorter depth, the Contax-mount Nikkor-P 85/2 are identical to the Nikon bayonet-mount version. It has been very DIFFICULT to locate a LSM model in black barrel finish and I will reserve for future add-on when I managed to get one as illustration. All we know the LSM model was weighs heavier. The encoded numbering system for the Contax-mount units seemingly was mixed between batches produced within the Nikon version as there are no distinctive and assuring guideline offer so far for verification purposes, the only way is to make use of the usual "C" symbol engraved on the other end of the lens barrel as visual identification of version.
LINK to view avrious images/photo/ pictures of a Contax mount version, Black lens barrel model of a Nippon Kogaku (Nikon) Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens for Nikon rangefinder cameras

C marking for Contax mount on a Nikkor Lens Early version of a Contax mount version, Black lens barrel model of a Nippon Kogaku (Nikon) Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens for Nikon rangefinder cameras
The version shown here has a S/N 400052. Most of the lens features found on this early black barrel with normal ring pattern version are the same except the lens mount section is slightly differed in depth from the Nikon bayonet model. It has a "C" engraving to show it is a Contax mount model. The rear section shows the Contax mount. The lens coating during this stage typically reflects a slightly dense blue/magenta color.
Serial numbering EARLY version of Contax mount version, Black lens barrel model of a Nippon Kogaku (Nikon) Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens for Nikon rangefinder cameras Rear lens mount with reflective lens coating on a Contax Mount Nikkor-P telephoto lens
Credit: Image(s) at the left courtesy of Mr. Kelvin Li from his popular gokelvincameras @ Ebay Store which retails for many hard-to-find Nikon, canon, Contax oldies. Image Copyright © 2003. All rights reserved.

Side view of a Leica Screw Mount Nikkor-P 1:2 f=85cm telephoto lens Side view of a Leica Screw Mount Nikkor-P 1:2 f=85cm telephoto lens on other distance scales
Leica SM-mount black barrel version Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens

A well used black barrel version of ghe Nikkor-P in LSM w/ a high S/N 404596.. Not easy to locate a Leica Screw-mount version of this Nikkor-P 85/2. The direction of the focusing ring turns the other direction (thus, the Pinky Infra-index is located on the right side of the focusing index).


Credit
: Image(s) at the left courtesy of Mr. Kelvin Li from his popular gokelvincameras @ Ebay Store which retails for many hard-to-find Nikon, canon, Contax oldies. Image Copyright © 2003. All rights reserved.
LSM Nikkor-P 85mm f/2.0 Leica screw mount in Serial Number 404596 LSM Nikkor-P 85mm f/2.0 Leica screw mount at lens mount


Information on Nikon Optical Finder for Nikkor-P 8.5cm f/2.0 lenses:-

Nippon Kogaku KK individual optical finder 8.5cm with original leather lens case (Chrome version) LINKs to various Nikon Nippon Kogaku older Optical Finder s such as Variframe, varifocal, Bright-line frame finders
Despite the Nikon S2 was gaining popularity, it didn't have a built-in bright-line frame caters for 85mm focal length. Until arrival of the superbly crafted Nikon SP (1957) which has a universal viewfinder system built-in that cover for most popular focal lengths, Nikon photographers have to make use of an Optical Finder to aid composition. The original dedicated finder for 85mm was only offered in chrome. It has a small dimension which measuring approx. an inch + in length. The projected image is also slightly less than life size. Parallax adjustment is via a rotating helical wheel positioned near the eyepiece. They have either Nippon Kogaku Tokyo with MIOJ engraving, or Nippon Kogaku Japan model. To get the right finder, there is a "8.5" print mark locates at the front. It was sold as optional item by Nikon.

Anyone can take some NICE pictures of their Bright-line Frame Finder for me ???
   

Nippon Kogaku TOKYO 8.5cm finder
Typically, single-focal length finder (Nikon termed theirs as "Individual Finder") was supplied with a portable leather case. The original type was not the most friendly finder on earth to use but it had served its purpose during its time. A good alternate Optical Finder was the Bright-frame Finder which was introduced quite late in 1956. It has a larger housing for ease of framing. There are parallax settings within the frame lines and adjustment is via a built-in dial at the rear section. Most of the Bright-line frame finder are serialized but not on the earlier chrome versions.

There are alternatives. Singe-focal length finder is just like fixed focal length lenses. Nikon had provide a solution for photographers who often like to change lenses during photo sessions. The
Variframe Finder as well as the Varifocal Finder operate like a zoom lens principle - except finder in a rangefinder camera doesn't take pictures but only offered as a form of visual / viewing aid for photo composition.

8.5cm (85mm) Finder for Nikkor-P Nikkor-S telephoto lens Rangefinder Nikon camera with Sport finder frame Nikon (Nippon Kogaku) Varifocal finder for Nikon rangefinder cameras
Another last solution is via a foldable Sport Frame Finder which was for fast responsive action photography with no time to check minute details such as parallax or perspective.

A beautifully taken photo of the rear lens element on a Nikkor-P 85mm f/2.0 rangefinder lens
Basic Technical Specification for Nikkor-P.C 1:2 f=8.5cm (application to version II all chrome/black lens barrel version) telephoto lens:- (for earlier chrome version with f/16, please refer to the spec. sheet HERE)

Lens Mount
: Nikon Bayonet S-mount for Nikon RF camera models
Compatible Models: Nikon S-series rangefinder models; Leica SM and Contax Mount versions available
Focal Length: 85mm (8.5cm)
Angle of View: 28
° 30' (Diagonal); 16° /24° (Horizontal/Vertical)
Maximum / Minimum Aperture: f/2.0 / f/32
Optical Construction: 5 elements in 3 groups
Minimum Focusing Distance: approx. 1m (approx. 3.5 ft on scales) ~
OO; (Marked values: Feet ONLY for all models:- OO, 50, 30, 20, 15, 12, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5 , 4, 3.5'
A beautifully captured photo of the Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm taken by Jon Mitchell¨ª
Credit: Image copyright 2008 Jon Mitchell® from Australia. Image Copyright 2008. All rights reserved. You can access Jon's portfolio at Flickr for more creative visual. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

Optical diaphragm /design./ construction of  a Nikkor-P 85mm f/2.0

NOTE:- The optical construction shown here is applicable for ALL version of Nikkor-P 1:2 f=85mm which share the identical same 5 elements in 3 groups design.

Depth of field Tables for RF Nikkor 8.5cm f/2.0 telephoto lens
Rotational Focusing direction: RIGHT-->> LEFT (Nikon, Contax); LEFT -->> RIGHT (LSM)

Infra Index
:
Provided in all models
Depth of Filed Scales: f/32, f/22, f/16, f/11, f/8, f/4 & f/2.0 DOF chart / table at the left (229k Jpeg)
Magnification ratio: 1.7X; Filter Attachment Size: 48mm (P=0.75) Snap-On, Screw-in type / Series VII
Dimension: no info yet
Weight: approx. 400g 11-5/8 oz (LSM version: 12-7/8 oz).

Black lens barrel model of a Nippon Kogaku (Nikon) Nikkor-P 1:2 f=8.5cm telephoto lens for Nikon rangefinder cameras w/black, metal lens cap
Other Information: Early Nippon Kogaku JAPAN series were all having chrome finishing with f/32 minimum aperture. Second series has black lens barrel design; Third series has a slightly shorter front end chrome section with a newer, thinner knurling rings. There is no known version so far that supplied with metric scales yet (Please send me some pictures for updating). Original listed/Suggested retail price in Japan: 38,000 Yen. This black barrel lens version was also made available in Contax bayonet mount as well as in Leica Screw mount (M39), with the latter produced in smaller volume than others.

Serial Numbering Guide: Chrome f/32 aperture: 289000~296664 (approx. 8,000 units); 396700~404386 (approx. 9,000 units); Black Barrel (series 1):- 398800 ~ 404386; Series II Black:- 496000~497643 (approx. 2,000 units) Ref: Mr. Robert Rotoloni, author of An Illustrated History of Nikon Rangefinder Cameras.
Credit: Image at the left courtesy of Mr. Kelvin Li from his popular gokelvincameras @ Ebay Store which retails for many hard-to-find Nikon, canon, Contax oldies. Image Copyright © 2003. All rights reserved.
   

previous | NEXT | 45 A 85mm telephoto lens with a fast lens speed - Nikkor-S 1:1.5 f=8.5cm

Part One - Early / Variations | Part Two - Early LSM/Contax models | Part Three - Chrome barrel f/f32 | Part Four Black barrel f/32 | Part Five (Nikkor-S 85mm f/1.5)

RELATIVE:- How the rangefinder Nikkor lenses evolved itself after the reflex Nikkor era? The focal length was very popular among Nikon photographers. The first non Ai reflex version started with a moderately faster lens speed version of f/1.8 from the RF f/2.0 in 1964. The Nikkor-H had also went through several rounds of updates and version in 1973 had applied the NIC. A radical change of the design was occurred in 1975 during the Pre-Ai era and had remained immensely popular telephoto lens but it was replaced with an Nikkor 85,mm f/2.0 along with the major Ai-upgrade in 1977. The Ai-S Nikkor 85/2.0S was introduced quite late in 1983. In 1988, the first Autofocus Focus AF Nikkor 85mm f/1.8S was introduced and the lens speed was reverted back to f/1.8 from the Ai/Ai-S f/2.0 The AF-D 85mm f/1.8D was later introduced in 1994 for 3D Matrix Metering enabled Nikon AF SLRs. Variations: Nikon had shown a prototype Autofocus 80mm f/4.5 as early as in 1971 (NOTE the 80mm focal length change here for some of the lenses mentioned); the AF 80mm f/2.8S IF was released as the companion lens for Nikon F3AF in 1983. Another surprising package was the PC Micro-Nikkor 85mm f/2.8D. However, none of these were comparable to the Nikkor 85mm f/1.4 - where it was ranked as one of the fastest short telephoto lens for a long time. The AF Nikkor f/1.4D was introduced quite late in 1996.

W-Nikkor-O 1:4 f=2.1cm | W-Nikkor.C 1:4 f=2.5cm | W-Nikkor.C 1:3.5 f= 2.8cm | W-Nikkor.C 3.5cm lens Group (3.5/2.5/1.8) | Stereo-Nikkor 1:3.5 f=3.5cm | 5cm (50mm) lens group | RF Micro-Nikkor 1:3.5 f=5cm | Nikkor-P.C 1:2 f=8.5cm lens group / Nikkor-S.C 1:1.5 f=8.5cm lens group | Nikkor-P.C 1:2.5 f=10.5cm lens group / Nikkor-T 1:4 f=10.5cm | Nikkor-Q.C 13.5cm lens group: 135/4, 135/3.5 Early / Last Version, 135/4 Bellow lens | Nikkor-H 1:2.5 f=18cm | Nikkor-Q 1:4 f=25cm | Nikkor-T 1:4.5 f=35cm | Nikkor-T.C 1:5 f=50cm | Reflex-Nikkor 100cm f/6.3

System Accessories for Nikon Rangefinder cameras
Optical Finders (4 parts):-
Fixed Focal length Finders (index page): 2.1cm, 2.5cm, 2.8cm, 3.5cm, 35cm Stereo, 5cm, 8.5cm, 10.5cm, 13.5cm | Variframe / Varifocal / Sport-frames | Nikon Reflex Housing

Nikon S36/S72/S250 Motor Drives / S36 Manual | light meters | Nikon RF Flash/Speedlights | Close-up photography / Repro Copy Outfit / Nikon Bellow Focusing Device (in progress) | Cases/Compartments | Lens & body caps, Lens Hoods/shades, Original Price Lists | packaging/boxes

Instruction Manuals

Related info:- Main index page for Leica/Leitz | Contax/Carl Zeiss | Seiki Kogaku (Canon)

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Nikon RF-Nikkor lenses (Rangefinder):- Main Index Page
Nikon Auto Focus Nikkor lenses:- Main Index Page
Nikon
Manual Focus Nikkor lenses:- Main Index Page

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