Reading through your report of the new Nikkor 80-400G lens I would like to add my experience to this fine lens.
I got one of the first which was delivered in Switzerland.
I used it in the field and got the impression that the left hand side is less sharp then the rest of the lens. So I did some dedicated test with different focus length and different apertures. The first impression was confirmed by these tests photos.
I took the lens to the Nikon Service Center nearby Zurich and explained my problem. I left the lens with the camera at Nikon.
After one week I could get the lens back.
I did the same tests at home with the same results. Nikon did not do very much, replaced the camera lens receptacle and adjusted something at the bayonet of the lens.
I was quite upset and returned within a few days to the Nikon service center and called the head of the repair shop. We discussed the issue and left him again the camera with the lens and some sample pictures.
A few days later I got the email that the camera and lens are ready to be picked up.
So I went and the head of the repair shop came in person. He explained to me that I have a new lens. My original lens has an unexplained failure; it seems the some lens elements were not correctly built up in the tube. A service engineer from Nikon Japan was visiting the Nikon service center in Zurich to do some instruction for the Swiss service personal. He got to know about the problem of my lens and examined it. He decided to take the lens with him back to Japan since something strange was with that lens. Nikon excused them about the first trial and gave me a nice box full of Swiss chocolate!!!
Since then I use the lens quite often and I’m quite happy. I took it to a trip to Canada and to Russia without any further problems. (th)