Is Nikkor 50mm 1.2 on D800 any good for portraits?

Discussion in 'Nikon Lenses' started by hulk2012, Jul 30, 2014.

  1. hulk2012

    hulk2012 TPF Noob!

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    I'm planing on buying NIKKOR 50mm 1.2 for my d800 and wonder what are your thoughts on them as well as what are on nikon MF is like from your experience used in portraits?


     
  2. SnappingShark

    SnappingShark Always learning. Supporting Member

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    sure it is ... damn, I hope your subject doesn't mind how sharp any flaws look, with this lens! I heard it's ultra sharp.
     
  3. D-B-J

    D-B-J Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Haven't used it but heard it is tack sharp. Can't imagine it on a D800!
     
  4. molested_cow

    molested_cow TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    I have it, but I've only used it on the D700 which is only 1/3 of resolution. The only thing I will caution about is it being a manual focus lens. For studio portrait, it will be great, but otherwise, you will have to practice hard to get the focus right.

    Quality wise, I think it's very similar to the F1.4 version. I don't know, never really did a side-by-side comparison.
     
  5. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    50mm is not a focal length I would expect to see much, if any use in a studio unless you're doing a group shot, and then the 1.2 is going to be wasted.
     
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  6. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    My guess is you will not be able to focus it accurately enough to achieve satisfyingly accurate and precise manual focusing results if the lens is used at wider f/stops...even f/2 is dubious, in my experience, in many situations that are even the least bit non-static. Why? It's the viewfinder screens in d-slr cameras! These viewfinder screens do NOT, I repeat, they do NOT show the limited depth of field of wider aperture values; what is seen through a modern d-slr screen is roughly around f/4.5 depth of field wise...which means that what you see, visually, is NOT as crisp and as IN-focus nor as OUT-of-focus as you'd see with say a 1970's or 1980's manual focusing SLR's viewing screen. You're focusing by eye with basically moderate aperture depth of field, but if you happen to be photographing at say f/1.4, the chance for focusing boo-boos is wayyy high. If the subjects are moving, then the problem just gets worse and worse.

    And as Tirediron mentioned, 50mm? Not that useful as a studio lens length! I'd want something longer, like maybe the Cosina/Voigtlander 58mm f/1.4 for a specific example. 50mm forces you to be sooooo close to people...the distortion of the body and features is pretty apparent, compared against a longer lens length. Outdoors, in real, actual social situations is where the 50mm lens shines, but honestly, I think the newer autofocus lenses are the smarter bet for more situations; you will find out soon enough that with a D800, if your focus is not EXACT, that your 36MP camera's photos look like they were made using a 10MP camera. Focusing is becoming more and more and more of an issue as MP counts soar.
     
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  7. hamlet

    hamlet No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If i knew this 1.2 was this cheap i would have bought it instead of the 1.4. Normal everyday 1.8 photographers might not know it, but we aperture hogs know the difference. Get that beautiful piece of glass. THAT's RIGHT! I see you popping up your flash!
     
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  8. djacobox372

    djacobox372 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Not sure where the comments about sharpness are referring to because just about every other 50mm nikkor is sharper. The advantage if the 1.2 is the lack if sharpness and contrast wide open and excellent bokeh for portraits. Disadvantage is weight.

    Just make sure to get the 9blade aperture version.
     
  9. hulk2012

    hulk2012 TPF Noob!

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    I will double check it to make sure it's 9 piece mate. Gotta treat my baby d800 by these 50 1.2 bad boys, 135 f2 DC and profoto d1 set to kill the portraits though..
     
  10. molested_cow

    molested_cow TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Remember to set the lens profile in the menus so that your D800 will give you the correct light metering. I had to do that with my D700, not sure about yours.
     
  11. manaheim

    manaheim Jedi Bunnywabbit Staff Member Supporting Member

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    This was my assumption... on a FF camera, 50mm is wider than you would expect, so you're going to need to get in reeeeeeeeeally close for a portrait.
     
  12. hulk2012

    hulk2012 TPF Noob!

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    Yeah you right. I'm also building reportage portfolio so they will be perfect for it. And the night candids against some nights city lights with that gentle flash to lit the face. Something like that
     

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