Nikon Trademarks ‘Noct’ for New Cameras and Lenses

Nikon has filed a trademark application in the European Union for the word “Noct.” With the company’s full-frame mirrorless camera around the corner, it seems likely this new trademark filing may be related to the new camera system.

Nikon Rumors reports that the filing emerged on Friday, May 18th, when it went under examination.

The trademark covers: “Cameras; digital cameras; cameras with interchangeable lenses; digital cameras with interchangeable lenses; lenses for cameras; lenses for digital cameras; interchangeable lenses for cameras; mount adapters for lenses; camera mounts; lens mounts; parts and fittings for all the aforesaid goods.”

In other words, it may apply to an entire camera system of cameras and lenses.

The word/prefix ‘noct’ is a variation of ‘nocti’, which is a combined form of the Latin word ‘nox’, meaning night. Leica uses the trademark “Noctilux” to denote its highest-end, largest-aperture lenses — the ones that let in the most light in while in low-light environments.

Nikon itself has used “Noct” in the past. The company’s Noct-Nikkor 58mm f/1.2 lens, one of the fastest it has ever produced, was a legendary lens prized for its optics.

“The famously fast and super special lens, with hand polished elements designed to reduce the coma flare,” Japan Camera Hunter writes. “This lens was created with low light and astronomical applications in mind, hence Noct (Nocturnal).”

(As a side note: while the Noct-Nikkor 58mm f/1.2 is already a rare lens that sells for thousands of dollars these days, Japan Camera Hunter writes that there were a small number, perhaps 50 to 150, that were shipped with an error — the “Noct” on the lens was mistakenly engraved as “Nocf”. These lenses reportedly cost double the price of the error-free version.)

This latest “Noct” trademark filing seems to further suggest that Nikon is planning to offer ultra-fast lenses for its upcoming mirrorless system — the company has already patented 52mm f/0.9 and 36mm f/1.2 full frame mirrorless lenses (back in late 2017). If “Noct” is indeed a mark related to the upcoming camera system (which Nikon is trying to launch by spring 2019), then that system may have amazing low-light performance as one of its main selling points.