by Andrea G. Blum for Nikongear.com
Last Update: 01 August 2012
Note from Editor:
This is a joint effort by the members of Nikongear who hang out in the Invisible Spectrum section. Thanks to everyone there for their suggestions, comments, proofreading, lists, links, measurements, experiments and all round good fellowship.
Please PM <annedi> on Nikongear with any corrections, additions or suggestions.
All links are in underlined, bold italics.
- IR = infrared
- UV = ultraviolet
- UVIR = ultraviolet and/or infrared
- <screen-name> = Nikongear member's screen name
UV Sticky PART 1: Intro, Cameras, Mods, Lights
- UV Photography
- UV Cameras
- Camera Modification
- UV Lighting
- UV Eye Protection
- UV Lenses
- About the UV Lens List
- UV Focus Shift
- Contributors to the UV Lens List
- UV/IR Lenses: with No UV-Vis-IR Focus Shift
- UV Lenses: with No UV Focus Shift
- UV Lenses: Excellent UV Response, but have UV-Vis Focus Shift
- UV Lenses: Good UV Response, but have UV-Vis Focus Shift
- UV Lens Links
About the UV Lens List
For a lens to be on our UV Lens List, it must have at least one Nikongear member who has either used it or tested it to confirm that the lens is UV-capable in some portion of the UV bandwidth.
- UV-Capability ?
The amount of UV-capability of the lenses on this list varies.
We have tried to list lenses that reach at least 350nm, but not all lenses have been formally tested.
Investigate before purchase!
- Nikon F-Mount ?
Many lenses on this list do not have Nikon F-mounts.
Modification of the lens mount and the use of focusing helicoids and/or bellows may be necessary for use on a Nikon camera body.
Investigate before purchase!
- UV Focus Shift ?
Most of the lenses listed below have some degree of the UV focus shift discussed below.
Lenses without such focus shift are noted.
Investigate before purchase!
Focus shift between the Ultraviolet & Visible wavebands in a lens is a form of axial chromatic aberration that occurs because shorter, higher frequency UV lightwaves refract more in typical optical glass than do longer, lower frequency Visible lightwaves. Such wavelength-induced focus shift is a topic of particular interest in UV photography when using a camera that has no Live View. The first step is to focus the lens in Visible light before mounting the dark UV-pass filter. After mounting the filter you might have to adjust your initial focus if the lens has not been designed to bring the UV rays to the Visible plane of convergence. However, if your lens is designed to correct for aberration between the UV & Visible wavebands, then the original Visible focus will still be good when shooting through the dark UV-pass filter.
It is interesting to note here that if you are using a UV-capable camera with Live View under sufficient UV illumination, then UV focus shift is no longer a worry. However, attaining sufficient illumination to use Live View for focusing in the UV case is not always easy.Diffraction
In photography, diffraction is the spread of light waves caused by their passage through a lens aperture. The narrower the aperture, the more the diffraction. In UVIR photography, a key fact to note is that longer wavelengths spread more at a given aperture than shorter wavelengths.
So, for example, if you make a Visible light photo with a sensor & lens combo that begins to show diffraction blur past f/8, then you will have to open up your lens to f/5.6 (or larger) to shoot a sharp IR version of the same photo. But on the UV side, you could stop down to f/11 (or smaller) and still stay sharp. The rule of thumb is there is approximately a 1-2 stop aperture variation around the diffraction limit of a given sensor & lens combo.
When diffraction is recorded by a digital sensor, it shows up as a loss of sharpness in an image.Contributors to the UV Lens List
- annedi = Andrea Blum
- anon = Anonymous
- brianc1959 = Brian Caldwell
- kds315 = Klaus Schmitt
- nfoto = Bjørn Rørslett
- overmywaders = Reed Curry
- RKPhotog = Bob Kerr
- Vivek = Vivek Iyer
These lenses have no focus shift between UV, Visible or IR wavelengths.
Lens info for each brand includes: Focal Length & Speed, Description, User/Mount/Filter and Remarks, if any.
- 85mm f4.5 Ultra Achromatic Takumar. /kds315/M42/49mm No longer manufactured.
- 60mm f4.0 Apo Macro. /nfoto/F/52mm
Currently manufactured. Color corrected for 310-1100nmm.
Hotspots at high magnification can be controlled via extension tubes.
Jenoptic Optical Systems, Inc.
- 120mm f4.5 Macro UV-IR Apo. /brianc1959/?/
Currently manufactured. For medium format.
Color corrected for 325-1100nm.
Caldwell Photograpic. PDF.
These lenses were designed as UV-dedicated lenses that have no UV focus shift .
They may be useable for IR, but would have IR focus shift.
- 60mm f4.0 UV-Planar. /Vivek,kds315/M39/46mm
- 105mm f4.0 Apo Macro. /kds315/F/52mm
Currently manufactured. Color corrected for 250-650nm.
- 105mm f4.3 UV-Sonnar. /kds315,Vivek/H/
Made by Zeiss.
- 41mm f2.5 UFAR. /kds315/M42/
Developed for the Russian Mars Mission !
- 105mm f4.5 UV-Nikkor. /nfoto,Vivek,kds315,annedi/F/52mm
- 105mm f4.5 PF10545MF-UV. /kds315/F/52mm
Currently manufactured by Nikon subsidiary Nikon Tochigi as a replica of the 105mm f4.5 UV-Nikkor.
Must be special ordered.
Company Seven offers this lens: http://www.company7....0105f4.5uv.html
- 60mm f4.0 UV-Rodagon. /kds315,annedi/M39/35.5mm
- 80mm f5.6 UV-Rodagon. /kds315/?/
- 105mm f5.6 UV-Rodagon. /kds315/M39/
- 150mm f5.6 UV-Rodagon. /kds315/M50x.75/
Although some of these lenses have ‘UV’ in their name, they all have some UV focus shift. They will need a final focus adjustment if initial focus is made in Visible light prior to mounting a UV-pass filter. They may be useable for IR, but would have IR focus shift.
The lenses here are listed separately from the UV-capable lenses that follow this list because these transmit more deeply into the UV band.
- 50mm f3.5 Quartz Takumar. /kds315/M42/
- 135mm f5.0 Quartz Takumar. /kds315/flange/
- 229mm f4.5 P-16 Phosphor. /kds315/RMS/
- 30mm f5.0 UV Mikrotar. /kds315/RMS/
- 60mm f4.0 UV-Objektiv. /kds315/Exakta/
- 120mm f4.5 Quarz-Anastigmat. /kds315/Compur/
- 120mm f4.5 Achromat-Quarz-Anastigmat. /kds315/?/ Although labeled 'Achromat', it has UV-Vis focus shift.
- 42mm f9.0. /kds315/special/
- 50mm f1.8 Quarzobjektiv. /kds315/M39x.75/
- 102mm f4.0 UV Anastigmat. /kds315/flange/
- 267mm f8.0 UV Amaton. /kds315/flange/
These lenses all have some UV focus shift. They will need a final focus adjustment if initial focus is made in Visible light prior to mounting a UV-pass filter. They may be useable for IR, but would have IR focus shift.
- 55mm f? P Micro-Nikkor. /RKPhotog/ Relative to Noflexar: -2.0 EV transmission on D40+Baader-U.
- 135mm f3.5 AI. /nfoto/F/
The Nikon E series was a lower-cost ‘economy’ line made in the ‘80s for amateur SLRs.
They featured a simple optical design.
- 28mm f2.8 Series E. /nfoto/F/52mm
- 35mm f2.5 Series E. /nfoto/F/52mm
- 100mm f2.8 Series E. /nfoto/F/52mm
The EL-Nikkor series was designed for photographic enlargers.
See EL-Nikkor Lenses in UV Photography by Enrico Savazzi for a lot of info about the EL-Nikkors.
- 40mm f4.0/N EL-Nikkor, plastic. /kds315/M39/
- 50mm f2.8 EL-Nikkor, metal. /kds315,nfoto/M39/40.5mm
- 50mm f4.0 EL-Nikkor, metal. /kds315/M39/34.5mm
- 50mm f4.0/N EL-Nikkor, plastic. /kds315/M39/
- 63mm f3.5 EL-Nikkor, metal. /kds315, nfoto, Vivek/M39/40.5mm
- 68mm f3.5 EL-Nikkor. /Vivek/M39/
- 75mm f4.0 EL-Nikkor. /anon,kds315/M39/34.5mm
- 80mm f5.6 EL-Nikkor. /kds315/M39/34.5mm
- 80mm f5.6/N EL-Nikkor. /overmywaders/M39/40.5mm
- 105mm f5.6 EL-Nikkor. /Vivek, kds135/M39/34.5mm
- 135mm f5.6 EL-Nikkor. /kds315/M39/43mm
- 210mm f5.6 EL-Nikkor. /Vivek/?/68x.75mm
The FAX-Nikkor series was designed for making printing plate negatives.
- 160mm f5.6 FAX-Nikkor. /Vivek, nfoto/
- 180mm f5.6 FAX-Nikkor. /Vivek/
- 210mm f5.6 FAX-Nikkor. /Vivek/
- 240mm f5.6 FAX-Nikkor. /Vivek/
- 35mm f4.0 Takumar. /kds315/M42/49mm
- 300mm f5.6 Ultra Achromatic Takumar. /kds315/M42/55mm Designed for Vis-IR, but also transmits UV with focus shift.
- 35mm f3.5 Edixa-Travegon. /kds315/?/49mm
- 28mm f3.5 Lithagon. /anon, kds315/?/49mm
- 35mm f2.8 Lithagon. /kds315/?/49mm
- 35mm f3.5 Lithagon. /kds315/?/49mm
- 35mm f3.5 Ennalyt. /kds315/?/49mm
- 135mm f3.5 Ennalyt. /anon/?/52mm
- 35mm f2.8 Exaktar. /kds315/
- 35mm f2.8 Krasnogorsk. /kds315/
- 50mm f4.5 Focotar-2. /kds315/?/na No filter thread but clamp on holder available from Leitz.
- 100mm f5.6 Focotar II. /kds315/?/49mm
- 50mm f2.9 Meritar. /overmywaders/?/35.5mm
- 50mm f2.9 Peconar. /overmywaders/?/?/Slight focus shift.
- 35mm f4.5 Primagon. /kds315/?/49mm
- 50mm f2.8 Domiplan. /kds315/?/49mm
- 58mm f1.9 Primoplan. /kds315/?/49mm
- 35mm f3.5 Noflexar Macro. /Vivek,kds315,annedi/F/49mm Almost no UV focus shift. Available also in Exakta, Minolta and M42 mounts.
- 35mm f2.8 G. Zuiko. /kds315/
- 180mm f5.5 Tele-Picon. /overmywaders/
- 135mm f5.6. ??? /anon/
- 20mm f5.6 Krasnogorsk. /kds315/
- 75mm f3.5 Flat Field Macro. /RKPhotog/
- 45mm f2.8 Cassarit. /kds315/?/
- 50mm f2.8 Auto-Cassaron. /kds315/?/49mm
- 50mm f2.8 Cassar-S. /kds315/?/40.5mm
- 50mm f2.8 Edixa-Auto-Cassaron. /kds315/?/49mm
- 105mm f4.5 Cassar. /overmywaders/?/
- 40mm f4.5 ??? /overmywaders/
- 100mm f5.6 Componon-S. /kds315,overmywaders/
- 135mm f? Componon-S. /RKPhotog/ Backfocus at 1M is 3.8%. Relative to Noflexar: -1.33 EV transmission on D40+Baader-U.
- 35mm f2.8 Super-Lentar. /overmywaders/
- 50mm f3.5 Tessar T. /kds315/?/39mm
- 58mm f2.0 Biotar. /overmywaders/M42/?/ Almost no UV focus shift.
- 135mm f4.0 Triotar. /overmywaders/?/
- 51mm f4.5 Graphic Raptar. /kds315/?/29mm
- 74mm f4.5 Graphic Raptar. /RKPhotog/?/? Backfocus at 1M is 6.9%. Relative to Noflexar -2.0 EV transmission on D40+Baader-U.
- 90mm f4.5 Graphic Raptar. /kds315/?/29mm
- 105mm f4.5 Graphic Raptar. /kds315/?/29mm
- 138mm f4.5 Graphic Raptar. /kds315/?/37mm
- All You Ever Wanted to Know about Digital UV and IR Photography
This classic reference article by NG member Dr. Bjørn Rørslett <nfoto> contains UV lens info.
- Fuori Banda: Gli Obiettivi UV per la Fotografia Multispettrale
This website by Marco Cavina contains UV lens info in Italiano.
- Lens Survey and Subjective Evaluation
This survey by NG member Dr. Bjørn Rørslett <nfoto> contains UVIR ratings for some lenses.
- Macrolens Collection Database: Special Lenses
This extensive compilation by NG member Dr. Klaus Schmitt <kds315> contains UVIR lens info.
- Nikon Lens Specifications
This excellent set of specs by NG member Roland Vink <rvink> covers all Nikon lenses.
- Principle Thoughts about Lenses + Filters for UV
By Dr. Klaus Schmitt <kds315>.
- Lenses for UV; a study comprising some 50 lenses.
By Dr. Klaus Schmitt <kds315>.