Why nifty fifty?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Dmitri, Jul 8, 2009.

  1. Dmitri

    Dmitri No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    yeah I bought one a while back, and honestly can't remember the last time I used it. Why is it supposed to be better than the kit lens? Because of the 2.8?
     
  2. AtlPikMan

    AtlPikMan TPF Noob!

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    Nope, Because of the 1.8 or 1.4, the price tag and Image IQ makes it a must have vs other more pricey lenses.
     
  3. CW Jones

    CW Jones TPF Noob!

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    well I believe the "Nifty fifty" is the 50mm 1.8. its good for portraits from what I read about it. good IQ, and it doesn't cost much at all
     
  4. Big Mike

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

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    Because of the 1.8 ;)

    Also, the 50mm is a fairly simple lens and thus it's fairly cheap/easy to make a lens that is relatively good in terms of optical quality.
    When someone only has the 'kit' lens, the image quality that the 'nifty fifty' is capable of, is quite a nice improvement for them.
    Of course, if you have other 'good quality' lenses, you can see that the nifty fifty is a cheap plastic lens in terms of build quality.

    And yes, it gets recommended so often, mainly because of it's price.
     
  5. Dmitri

    Dmitri No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Right 1.8 :lol: shows the last time I used it.
    ok, guess I just need to find the right time to use it. Thanks for the replies.
     
  6. icassell

    icassell TPF Noob!

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    I have other good quality lenses including my 17-50mm f2.8

    The f1.8 on my Canon 50mm f/1.8 MK I made it possible for me to get great images in the small mammal house at the zoo without cranking my ISO through the roof. It's also a lot smaller and less conspicuous than the zoom for those situations where you don't want to scream 'I am a photographer and I am taking your candid picture'.
     
  7. Joves

    Joves No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Well because the 50 makes you compose the shot with your feet and, getting into strange positions. But really because it make work on compositon and the shot. Something even us old timers need to get back to now and again.
     
  8. NateS

    NateS TPF Noob!

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    Because it lets in more light. My living room is dark at night and I have a hard time getting enough light with f2.8 and ISO 3200. I want to pick up another 50mm f1.8 so maybe I can stay closer to ISO1600 and f1.8. Not always fun to have the flash mounted when you want to snap a couple of quick pics of your son playing.
     
  9. Moglex

    Moglex TPF Noob!

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    If you make no assumptions whatsover about what you want to photograph the 50mm (FF 35mm Camera) is the most flexible lens for several reasons.

    1) Generally, it's hard to take a decent portrait with a wide angle

    2) Generally, it's hard to take a decent landscape/citiscape with a telephoto

    3) It's faster than virtually all other lenses so greater possibilities there.

    4) The wider aperture can give you greater dof effects

    Plus, it tends to be smaller, lighter, cheaper and better quality than zoom lenses.

    So all in all it's got a lot going for it which was why it was the standard lens with which most SLR's were supplied for decades. (And long before people started talking about a 'kit' lens.)
     
  10. icassell

    icassell TPF Noob!

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    This was in the days of the 35mm camera. In these days of crop-sensor cameras, I think it would make more sense to have a 'Nifty Thirty-Five' at the same price-point.
     
  11. Moglex

    Moglex TPF Noob!

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    Absolutely.

    Back in the day it was 50mm for 35mm SLR but 80mm for Hasselblad, Rolliflex, et al.
     
  12. tsaraleksi

    tsaraleksi TPF Noob!

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    A nifty 35 would be a really cool thing to have, because it would fulfill all of these requirements on a 1.6x crop. The reason they haven't done something like that is because a large part of the reasoning behind the low cost of the 50 is that 50mm is a fairly simple optical design for a number of reasons, so a 50mm lens will always be fairly easy / cheap to build (with some obvious exceptions). This is why even an f/2 35mm lens is $300 whereas an f/1.4 35 is $1000 (as opposed to the f/1.4 50 which is $350ish).
     

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