50mm 1.4 or 85mm 1.8

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by eric-holmes, Aug 31, 2010.

  1. eric-holmes

    eric-holmes No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    At the risk of getting little to no response, I have chose to place this topic in the correct category as opposed to dumping it into the "Beginners" forum. Follow suit.

    I am beginning to miss my prime. I had a 50mm 1.8 and I guess I just got tired of the leg work that came with it. I was looking at a picture I had framed on the wall the other day and realized how sharp it was. I want that sharpness back. I was considering another 50mm but maybe a 1.4. I also want a little more reach sometime so that is why I was looking at the 85 1.8. I noticed there was not one bad review on it on B&H. Thoughts?
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    At least you didn't put it into the 'Digital' section. It's amazing how many lens questions I move out of there every day. :roll:

    I don't have much insight on the Nikon versions of these lenses...but if you were talking about the Canon models, I'd say that they are both similar lenses, so just pick the focal length you like best.
     
  3. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    The Nikon 50mm 1.4 is an outstanding lens, as is the 85; you'll have no sharpness issues with either one. If I were to go with only one of them, it would be the 50, since on an APS-C sensor, 85mm (~128mm equiv) is a bit on the long side for many situations.
     
  4. pbelarge

    pbelarge TPF Noob!

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    I have one prime, it is the 50mm F/1.4

    I have started getting used working with it. One issue is the "foot work" required to get shots I am used to zooming in and out with. I would think that the 85m on a 1.6 crop will take even more work, depending on what you are shooting. I will also say it has slowed me down a lot when shooting with it.
    I do like the prime, and I am thinking of a longer focal length...I just need to shoot more with the zooms to see which is my next lens.

    I am shooting mostly 'artsy' and architectural with the prime as of now.

    Good luck and let us know.
     
  5. ghache

    ghache TPF Noob!

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    i cant live without my 50mm 1.8, I use it for pretty much all my shoots. The only downside, its a little bit too long for full body shot in most indoor situation (on a crop sensor). I am using in my basement studio and for full body i have to be really close to the wall (studio is 24 feet long by 16 large)
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010
  6. eric-holmes

    eric-holmes No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I always find myself wanting to use a longer focal length. I enjoy not having to be so close to the client. I also like being able to take a tighter crop photo from a further distance for less distortion.
     
  7. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Sounds like an 85mm would be a lens you'd like, since you often want a narrower angle of view and the ability to make tighter shots from farther away. Be advised that on APS-C, 85mm is quite long....a full-body shot means you need to be about 30 feet or slightly more, away from a six foot tall person...but, for head and shoulders stuff, it's usable indoors.
     
  8. ghache

    ghache TPF Noob!

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    those prime lens have really low barrel distortion,

    our 18-105 have massive barrel distortion from 18-to 50mm...
     
  9. kundalini

    kundalini Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    The build quality difference of the 85mm f/1.8 versus the 50mm f/1.8 is not even funny. Metal hood. The backend of the lens is HUGE!.

    I did a comparison test between the two plus the 105mm f/2.8. Let's just say the model was not in the best of condition and the test was futile. Planning to attempt another test in the near future.
     
  10. eric-holmes

    eric-holmes No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    50mm 1.4. Not the 1.8. Did you test the 1.4?
     
  11. ghache

    ghache TPF Noob!

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    the 1200$ 85mm 1.4 comes with a metal hood,

    the 85mm 1.8 is smaller.
     
  12. eric-holmes

    eric-holmes No longer a newbie, moving up!

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