Nikon 50mm 1.4D AF


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Dec 5, 2012
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Toronto Canada
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Now here is a lens I didn't hear many talk about, ok to be honest I never knew there is a 1.4D, I knew of the 1.8D but 1.4D is new to me.
I have few question about this lens.

1. How good is it compared to the 1.8G ?
2.Any issues with this lens ?
3.Why is there no talk about this lens ?

Why am I asking you wondering ?

Well I have the 50mm 1.8G which I like and happy with and then I saw by accident a shop here in TO is selling the Nikon 50mm 1.4D for 250$
I wouldn't bother to invest a lot of money in such a small different in aperture but for only few more dollars I can get more light into my camera and my only concern is does it produces pictures which are close in quality to the 1.8G ?
I know the 50mm 1.8D is close to the 50mm 1.8G but I just cant seem to find any comparison between the 50mm 1.8G and 50mm 1.4D
I suspect the reason you don't hear much about the 1.4D anymore is because it's been eclipsed by the 1.4 & 1.8G. I have one, and I'm very happy with it; I can't compare it to a 1.4G as I don't have nore have used one, but I can't see it being worth the relatively minor increase in maxium aperture to go from the 1.8G to the older 1.4D.
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More light only about 2/3rds of a stop I believe?

I would choose the 50mm f1.8G over the 50mm f1.4D.
As pointed out by many others that I have read the G gives better bang for the buck and bokeh.
Choice between the 50mm f1.8D vs. 50mm f1.4D then the 50mm f1.8D gives much more bang for the buck at half or a third of the price.
I don't think the 1.4 AF-D is any great shakes. I would not bother procuring one, unless you simply must have an f/1.4 50mm lens.

In the G-series, the lower-cost 1.8 model has aspherical element design. According to every review I have read, the f/1.8 G model focuses faster than the G-series f/1.4 model. WHY this is nobody seems to know. Maybe the 1.4 G-series is geared so as to focus more-precisely than the 1.8 G? I dunno.

I have the 50mm f/1.4 Ai and a couple of the 50mm f/1.8 AF models, the pre-D versions. All of them are "okay". According to The Complete Nikon System by Peter Braczko, page 172, the 50mm 1.4 AF-D came out when the N90 film camera hit the market, and it has 7 elements in 5 groups, and is the third cosmetic variant of the 50/1.4 AF Nikkors, and the second optical variant.

Last summer I bought the new 1.8 G model. It's fine too. has at least one review of the 1.4 and 1.8 G models, compared, by Kai, so the video is rather silly and all over the place. Here is a "50mm lens shootout" comparing seven different 50's for Nikon F mount.

Seven 50mm prime lenses for Nikon F-mount compared by Cary Jordan | Nikon Rumors

Not sure about the 1.4 AF-D; it might focus very quickly. Some screw-drive lenses actually focus very rapidly, so, maybe, just maybe, the 1.4 AF-D might have that going for it. As to why there's not much talk about the 1.4 AF-D? Well, 50mm lenses are somewhat pedestrian, and the 1.8 AF-D model gets most of the attention. A 50mm lens is not very sexy. People want zooms, zooms, zooms in that focal length range, mostly.
I have the 50mm 1.4D and love it.
Paid $200 for mine about 8 years ago, and its in mint condition.
its well built, the picture quality is just fine, and the AF is plenty fast enough.
it has never given me any reason to feel that I needed to upgrade it.
to be perfectly honest, I don't typically see much of a reason to get the 1.4's at all (at any focal length) when the 1.8's are so much cheaper, and you don't really lose THAT much light gathering capability.
however, if you already have the 1.8G, i wouldn't bother getting the 1.4d, as that money could definitely be spent better elsewhere.
Well I see where the winds are blowing here, I think if I was in the market for a new 50mm lens I would seriously consider the 1.4D but since I have the 1.8G I will keep it.
I would like the extra light (as little as it is) but I guess the 1.8G will be good enough.

Thank you all for your help :)
i've shot extensively with a 1.4G, and then owned a 1.4D. the only difference i noticed is the D focused faster and was smaller. any image quality difference wasn't significant enough for me to notice day-to-day shooting. imo it's pretty comparable to the 1.4G. I have no direct comparison against the 1.8G, but there are lots of articles comparing the 1.4G and 1.8G that are probably fairly relevant.

as for general impressions, i felt that both the 1.4D and 1.4G were pretty soft for primes. even at f2.8 they were just about where my 24-70 is at f2.8 (i'd even still give the edge to the zoom). i've heard that the 1.8's are sharper, and if that's the case get the 1.8 because the wide apertures on the 1.4 aren't all that sharp or useful anyways.
I owned the 50mm F1.4G and I wasn't impressed. I returned it and went back to my former 50mm F1.8D. If I ever go F1.4, it will be the D that I try next.

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