Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 or f/1.8

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by kalni, Sep 1, 2010.

  1. kalni

    kalni TPF Noob!

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    Hi all,

    So I want myself a 50mm prime lens, and being a newbie I don't wanna invest
    on an expensive lens whose full potential I probably won't be able to harness.
    So I decided on the f/1.8 which is a helluva lot cheaper than the 1.4 till I saw
    this -- Nikon nikkor AF-D 50mm f/1.4 vs AF-D 50mm f/1.8

    At f/1.8 the Nikkor f/1.8 is not nearly as sharp as I expected it to be. So is
    that generally the case or the example shown is not very accurate or shot
    optimally?
     
  2. AdrianC

    AdrianC TPF Noob!

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    Well yeah, the 1.4 is known to be a sharper lens. I noticed you have the Nikon d5000, however. As far as I know, that does not have an internal focusing motor, meaning the 1.8 will not autofocus on your camera. The AF-S version of the 1.4 will autofocus on the d5000. The AF 1.4 will not autofocus.
     
  3. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    honestly, most 50mm lenses aren't too super wide open. I've got the Nikon 50G and it's OK wide open, at f/2 its good, but it doesn't get really good till f/2.8. Somewhat similar behavior on my Canon 50mm f/1.8 FD I use on my Olympus, but to a much more obvious degree. Wide open it's a disaster for anything but portraits. Insanely hazy. By f/2.8 it's just fine (for the size of the sensor), and at f/5.6-8 it's friggin awesome.
     
  4. kalni

    kalni TPF Noob!

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    Yes I know the 1.8 won't autofocus but I am not bothered about that much,
    I have been practicing with the focus ring a lot, what bothers me though is
    the lack of sharpness :\
     
  5. crimbfighter

    crimbfighter No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I think one thing you should keep in mind, is you will grow into the lens even if you don't feel you will "harness all it's potential" right now. The lenses will stick with you from body to body, probably lasting you a loooong time, and it's pretty disappointing when you realize you scrimped on quality to save some money way back when. This is a pretty addicting hobby and I think you would find out quickly you will grow into the better glass.

    One other thing, is it's not easy to manually focus on the D5000, I know, I have one, too. A while ago, I asked about why it's so hard to manually focus on the camera, and the consistent response was the focusing screen in our camera flat out sucks for manual focus. Maybe you are actually good at getting manual focus on the camera, but I never was... Just make sure you're not getting caught up in justifying it to yourself that you can deal with the manual focus because the cost is a lot lower. I actually had the 50 f/1.8 and ended up selling it because of the manual focusing. Which reminds me, I need to take that out of my signature... :er:
     
  6. SrBiscuit

    SrBiscuit TPF Noob!

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    keep in mind that MF wide open or even at 2 or 2.8 will be trickier due to the shallower dof.

    i have the 1.8 and i agree that it looks sweet at 2.8, so thats usually where i try to keep it.:thumbup:
     
  7. David Dvir

    David Dvir TPF Noob!

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    I would aim for the 1.4G. I have both the D and G and they're just amazing, as mentioned, especially around 2-2.8. I had the 1.8 very briefly and yes it's a lot cheaper but what I've learned is that for the most part, prices are there for a reason. The 1.8 is just not as sharp at equivalent aperture and I'm sure one of the perks of this lens you'd like to use is shooting close to wide open for that DoF
     
  8. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If you have not try that before, I suggest you try to manual focus with a fast lens first and see if that is something you like or hate. (rent/borrow etc)

    Someone in this forum switched gear because he was not happy with the photos that focus manually (mainly portrait shots).
     
  9. kalni

    kalni TPF Noob!

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    Thanks everyone !
    I agree its best to rent one and try it out first, don't wanna take chances :)
     

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