Which Lens Should I Purchase?

BunnyzOfDoom

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I'm fairly new to photography,and just purchased a Nikon D5100. Seeing as it doesn't have an auto-focusing motor,I'm limited to Nikon's AF-S lens. I'm not shooting any wildlife or sports,just street photography,so I need to be fairly close to objects most of the time. Fairly good Bokeh would be nice. So I narrowed it down to the 35mm AF-S F/1.8G DX Lens and the 50mm AF-S F/1.8G Lens. The 35mm is priced around $200 and the 50mm is priced at $300. Most of the people who I know that's into photography recommends purchasing a 50mm for a first lens,but the price difference is significant. Thanks to anyone in advance.
 

flatflip

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If you have the 18-55 kit lens; Take some pics at 35mm and take some pics at 50mm. Study to see what is the best fixed length for you.
 

analog.universe

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I like 35 better than 50 for street on a crop body, even 28 maybe? 50 was recommended all the time when 35mm film was all anyone shot, and it just sorta stuck. So if you have a full frame camera (which you don't), the recommendation is still good. For most dSLRs these days, which use APS-C sensors, ~30-35ish is the equivalent.
 

MTVision

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flatflip said:
If you have the 18-55 kit lens; Take some pics at 35mm and take some pics at 50mm. Study to see what is the best fixed length for you.

This is the best way to decide. FYI - most places sell the 50mm af-s 1.8g for 220.00 not 300.00. So it's all up to what works best for you!
 

MLeeK

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Usually the 50mm is recommended because it's the cheapest lens on the market. However when you have to purchas the AF-s version, it isn't.
The 35mm is also a little bit more "comfortable" on a crop sensor because it's not as tight at the 50mm. Nice for basic shooting.

Set your kit lens at 50mm and spend some time shooting at only 50mm. Then do the same at 35mm. See which one feels better to you
 
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BunnyzOfDoom

BunnyzOfDoom

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MTVision said:
This is the best way to decide. FYI - most places sell the 50mm af-s 1.8g for 220.00 not 300.00. So it's all up to what works best for you!

AF-S lens are slightly more expensive than 220.
 

Jeremy Z

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Between those two, definitely the 35mm.

Here's the break-down:

- on a 35mm camera, a 50 mm lens matched the magnification of your naked eye
- 35 mm lens was a mild wide angle

On your camera, a 35 mm lens will behave as if it were 50mm on a 35mm body. Street photographers usually prefer 35mm on a 35mm body. You should look for a 24mm f/2.8 or a 28mm f/2.8. More expensive and rare, but it is what you need if you're going to do street photography.

Also, and I realize this is thinking outside the box a bit, you might consider a high-end compact camera with the same money you'd spend on a lens. Like a Canon S100. Then, you've got a 24-120 lens, and a camera that is so inconspicuous that you will actually be more successful in street photography. People see you coming with an SLR and they're on guard. Are you a tourist? A reporter? What? They see you coming with a point & shoot, they peg you as a tourist and don't give it another thought.

Not sure how much a 24 or 28 mm Nikkor would cost you, probably at least a couple hundred.
 

DiskoJoe

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A lot of classic street photography was done with 35mm cameras. This is good if you want to get real intimate close up candid shots. I use a 70-210 a lot for street shooting.
 
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BunnyzOfDoom

BunnyzOfDoom

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Jeremy Z said:
Between those two, definitely the 35mm.

Here's the break-down:

- on a 35mm camera, a 50 mm lens matched the magnification of your naked eye
- 35 mm lens was a mild wide angle

On your camera, a 35 mm lens will behave as if it were 50mm on a 35mm body. Street photographers usually prefer 35mm on a 35mm body. You should look for a 24mm f/2.8 or a 28mm f/2.8. More expensive and rare, but it is what you need if you're going to do street photography.

Also, and I realize this is thinking outside the box a bit, you might consider a high-end compact camera with the same money you'd spend on a lens. Like a Canon S100. Then, you've got a 24-120 lens, and a camera that is so inconspicuous that you will actually be more successful in street photography. People see you coming with an SLR and they're on guard. Are you a tourist? A reporter? What? They see you coming with a point & shoot, they peg you as a tourist and don't give it another thought.

Not sure how much a 24 or 28 mm Nikkor would cost you, probably at least a couple hundred.

Thanks,you've been a big help!
 

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