Eri_c 9:50pm, 28 February 2010
My friend just got a 105 VR lens and we found that Nikon had started manufacturing it in CHINA instead of JAPAN.

Here is a set of their appearance differences comparison shot by me:

joelCgarcia 6 years ago
Thanks for sharing this development.
BlanksB 6 years ago
Thanks for the info. Mine was made in Japan. Any idea what serial number starting in China?
Eri_c 6 years ago
The serial no. was 6-digits of the 105VR lens made in JAPAN. The Chinese made was 7-digits instead. More info about the serial no. of Nikkor lens
bsii PRO 6 years ago
In terms of narrowing down when this change occurred, my 105 purchased in August 2009 from Amazon has a 6 digit number and "Made in Japan" printed on it, and shortly before I placed my order Amazon had gone out of stock, delaying my order by a couple of weeks (so they presumably didn't have *too* many of them stockpiled).
dbrandwijk 6 years ago
That is odd... bought mine two weeks ago. Made in Japan with serial 389026. According to the list you posted the japanese numbers should end at 385261
Aha, I am starting to understand the list now... the latest serial is still unknown... will post an email to the serial guy.
miwo76 PRO 6 years ago
The real question though, is there any difference in image quality or lens build?
mnm1505 6 years ago
One effect of the change is that the price for this lens has not changed in a year or so, even while other nikon lenses have increased prices. Eg the 17-55 is now about $1500 at amazon. I imagine the cost of producing the lens in China is less than it was in Japan, which has helped keep the price down. Kudos to Nikon for passing along savings.
Random Snapper 6 years ago
I had two via a Xmas gift last year.. sold one and then the other was recently stolen. I didnt use it a great deal but intended to pick up another copy when the 'war chest' grew enough.

Now I wonder if It should scramble to find a Japanese version? When was the production moved? Any chance to find a Japanese version?

Certainly would be interesting to read a comparison.
ea83 Posted 5 years ago. Edited by ea83 (member) 5 years ago
I picked one up yesterday. Mine is made in China. I rented one a while ago, was made in Japan. The one made in Japan is slightly heavier, and the switches are stiffer.

I hope the performance is the same. We'll soon find out.

Any opinions or findings?
manteotu 5 years ago
I bought my 105mm 2.8 from B&H for my D80 but even on manual and aperture mode both the f/stop and shutter value keeps changing when am focusing to shoot. And its made in china too.
Upon a second look it has all the elements that dbrandwijk put across for a us market making me more confuse on why i cant stay on 2.8 precisely. Need your views...
miwo76 PRO 5 years ago
ea83 Posted 5 years ago. Edited by ea83 (member) 5 years ago
manteotu: The lens is constant aperture, but the lens has to adjust the aperture depending on the amount of ambient because of internal focusing IF .--- If the focus was not IF and if the barrel extended outwards, the lens would not have to automatically adjust the aperture. Also because of IF, the micro subject will "breath" during focusing.---micro subject changes size.

Those quirks no big deal, since it has AF-S, IF, VR, and 14 elements ---- it's noticeably sharper than other macro lenses.
A test to try : Go outside under direct sunlight, and test the micro by taking picture of your eyes using VR all apertures handheld. If you can see clear fine details, then you most likely have an ok copy.
mausgabe PRO 5 years ago
See also Effective f-stop in macro: Nikkor macros accurately report the effective aperture as you increase magnification (focus closer and approach or reach 1:1 reproduction ratio).
haimsadia 5 years ago
i think that you all are just worrying for no reason. if the quality of the china made one was degraded than the japan one then nikon would not swap. why would they want to make shittier lenses?

anyway.. i'm glad i got mine from japan :P
Mine is made in China and Nikon back it up with 5 years of warranty so I am OK for 5 years. I tried Japanese one and didn't see any quality difference in-fact I was under impression that mine was sharper. I thin glass is made in Japan bat assembled in China. Who cares as long as I have warranty I am OK. Got mine in Canada.
swpars PRO 5 years ago
If any of you are whining about Made in China products, I hope you don't use any Apple products. They're all made in China. Few complex electronic products are assembled in Japan any more.
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