Looking to buy an 85mm in the near future.

Discussion in 'Nikon Lenses' started by Parptarf, Oct 12, 2015.

  1. Parptarf

    Parptarf TPF Noob!

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    I need an 85 for portaits. But there's a few options I'm considering. Mostly looking for f/1.4 and not 1.8 but I'm also considering their newest 1.8G

    How's the old f/1.4D in todays standard? Is it worth paying that extra for a 1.4G? And anyone who has tested any one of them against the Zeiss Planar T f/1.4ZF.2? (which I already know that I like a lot)

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  2. astroNikon

    astroNikon 'ya all Bananas I tell 'ya Supporting Member

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    That's a nice contradictory statement. :)

    I have the older 85/1.8 & 1.4 AF-D. Derrel will give a tons more information.
    But the older 85s are not as tack sharp as the modern 85s on modern 24mp and newer sensors. and the OOF areas are nice and creamy compared to the newer ones.
    And since they are not tack sharp you won't notice very minor blemishes, etc which is great for Portraits but not much so for Landscapes.

    But, I do very little people shots now-a-days.
     
  3. Parptarf

    Parptarf TPF Noob!

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    What I'm basically looking for is great bookeh, but also that nice transition from the elements in focus to those that are out of focus. (shoting portaits with a wide open aperture)

    The Zeiss was brilliant for this.

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  4. astroNikon

    astroNikon 'ya all Bananas I tell 'ya Supporting Member

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  5. Designer

    Designer Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Here, check this thread:

    If bokeh was a flavor.............. | Photography Forum

    Of course, that one is manual focus, but excellent bokeh.

    I don't understand this part of your sentence: " but also that nice transition from the elements in focus to those that are out of focus."

    Transition?

    Whatever; you'll probably like what you get from the 85G.
     
  6. Parptarf

    Parptarf TPF Noob!

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    I read through that thread. Seems like the 1.8G would be superb for something like car photography, which is also something I plan on using the 85 for. But I want that super creamy bookeh of the 1.4.

    I have kind of already fallen in love with the Zeiss Planar 85. So I'm basically only wondering how those Nikkor equivalents compare to that thing.

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  7. Designer

    Designer Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Are you sure about that? I guess I would like to see some kind of comparison.
     
  8. Parptarf

    Parptarf TPF Noob!

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    I love a tack sharp image as much as the next guy. But super soft bookeh is perfect for that dreamy painting-like feel. So yeah, I'm sure about wanting creamy OOF elements.

    I should get a Noctilux :D

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  9. Designer

    Designer Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    When I first came to this forum site, "bokeh" meant the quality of the blur, not just blur.

    I think that can now be called the "old definition" of bokeh.

    There's smooth blur and jittery blur. So which kind would you like?
     
  10. Parptarf

    Parptarf TPF Noob!

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    Like I said. Smooth and creamy blur/bokeh/OOF elements.

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  11. Mr.Photo

    Mr.Photo No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I absolutely love my Nikon 85mm 1.8G. In addition to that I also use a variety of other lenses including an 80-200 2.8 zoom lens, and even a couple of old manual focus Nikon lenses from the late 70's-early 80's. None of these lenses have an f/1.4 aperture and many of them only go to 2.8. I can't afford the insane prices that Nikon wants for many of their 1.4 lenses and in my opinion 1.4 is not really a necessity.

    I've read numerous posts on this forum and others complaining of overly soft photos when shooting at 1.4 with various lenses. This can happen because when photographing even a single subject (especially close up head and shoulder shots) the depth of field is so shallow at 1.4 that you can have the eyes in sharp focus, but other parts such as the ears will be out of focus. This of course is more pronounced when using a full frame sensor vs a crop sensor, but can still happen in certain instances.

    Blurry backgrounds or "Bokeh" can be achieved in various ways other than just using a wide open aperture on a fast lens. Focal length as well as subject to lens distance, and subject to background distance can be used to much greater effect than by just using an extremely fast aperture. While I do use my 1.8 lenses wide open at times, I've discovered that stopping down a stop or two can yield a better result in certain situations.

    Here's a shot I took of a young couple using my old Nikon AF 80-200 2.8 push pull zoom lens. Settings were 135mm @ f/2.8. I was about 10 ft from them and the background objects were roughly three times that distance. 2.8 works here to give that creamy blurred background as I'm far enough away from the subjects to have a wider depth of field despite the 2.8 aperture.

    [​IMG]

    Here's a shot I did with my Nikon 85mm 1.8G lens wide open at 1.8. If I had done this same shot with a 1.4 lens wide open because of the distance to the subject, It's likely the edges of her shoulders would have been too soft as well as the edges of her hair.

    [​IMG]

    And lastly this shot shows that even at a small aperture (f/8) that using a long lens (300mm in this shot) can produce a very small depth of field as is shown by how quickly the sharp area falls off in the foreground.

    [​IMG]DSC_4340 by Garrett Cross, on Flickr
     
  12. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Here's a recent shot with the 85mm 1.4 AF-D lens, shot hand-held at f/2.8. You can see the way the focus transition is by looking at the brickwork. _D3X4132_web-ready.JPG

    EXIF information says 2.37 meters distance, ISO 500, shutter speed 1/160 second.
     
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