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35 f/1.8 DX Brick Wall Test

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by Harry Lavo, Aug 14, 2009.

  1. I did a careful brick wall test today since weather conditions were right, and have published the results at http://www.pbase.com/hflphotos/35mm_f18_brick_wall_test.

    Here are reduced size versions of four key shots:

    f/1.8 slightly soft in sharpness and contrast
    f/2.2 full contrast, nearly full sharpness
    f/8 full contrast and sharpness
    f/11 just beginning to soften

    by f/16 the lens is gone.

    Essentially this lens is maximally usuable from f/2 to f/11...pretty outstanding. And totally consistent with what you see in the MTF tests in photozone, SLR-Gear, and DPreview testing.

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    The pbase website contains full size jpegs as well as these smaller ones. No PP'ng at all....just web retouching done automatically by Photo Mechanic in creating the smaller jpegs.

    I know some of you scoff at the idea of such things as resolution testing and MTF scores, so I will leave you with a shot of my cat Lenny glowering at me early yesterday evening as I made him sit for a low-light portrait in miserable light, using the just-arrived 35mm on my D300:

    Nikon D300, Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G AF-S DX 1/30s f/2.8 at 35.0mm iso3200
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    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2009
  2. SP77


    Jun 4, 2007
    Rockville, MD
    Yeah I noticed the same thing on mine. It's good enough to shoot wide-open at 1.8, but it has a nice bit of extra "bite" at 2.0 or 2.2.
  3. Awesome...now I know what lens to grab if a client needs me to shoot a brick wall....

    J.K. ..:) 
  4. ^^ :) 

    Anyhow, thanks for sharing your results. The cat shot is quite impressive. The exposure is very good and it shows.
  5. Yep, it takes my 50 f/1.4 (D) to get up to that same f/2.0 or f/2.2, even though it is faster on paper. The 35 operates like the 85 f/1.8..a tad soft wide open and then..wham..sharp at f/2 or f/2.2 in particular).

    Or a cat! Don't forget the cat! :biggrin:
  6. cant forget the cat...

    good test...thanks for posting..........

    I really love the sharpness this lens offers at 1.8...I even use it on the d700 with great results...
  7. Strid


    Feb 9, 2009
    Good point! Thanks for posting.
  8. Wow,

    I just pixel peeped the full res shots in your link, you need to post 100% crops. The F8 shots are crazy sharp.

    Thanks for sharing.
  9. Thanks, Jonathan. I find I can shoot at iso3200 with pretty good results so long as the exposure is nailed and their is not a lot of dark shadows in the picture. When the D300 first came out I wasn't sure about it; now I know that with care it can reach pretty far into the gloom. And a sharp, fast "normal" lens is exactly what it needs to shine.

    Back atcha, Andy. Thanks.

    Perhaps you are right, although I think the SMALL prints better show the "usability" (or lack thereof) of the sharpness, which is why I published them for the more casual viewer. For pixel-peepers like yourself, the pbase environment is unsurpassed even though it takes a few minutes to get through all four shots.

    Thanks for looking, though. I share your enthusiasm for this little beauty.
  10. Great test series Harry. I can tell the cat loves 'sitting' for you!! :) 

  11. Juliflex


    Jan 27, 2008
    Puerto Rico
    thanks for the test! i rarely use mine above f2.8 because its so sharp!!
  12. Steinar


    Aug 16, 2007
    Thank you VERY MUCH for this, Harry Lavo
  13. Thanks Harry. Good to know what I might be able to do once I get my hands on one.
  14. Very impressive, thanks for posting Harry.

  15. Yeah, it's pretty obvious, isn't it? :frown:

    I tend to shoot pretty wide open as well, but sometimes it comes in handy ... I shot at a horse farm this morning and used f8 to get the entire farm...foreground and background...in focus.

    You are welcome, Steinar.

    Yes indeedy, Doug. it's also good to know that this very impressive lens costs "only" $200...when many Nikon lenses are now up in quadruple digits.

    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 15, 2009
  16. kichu


    Oct 25, 2008
    one more information for those who use the lens on FX bodies ... the distortion on a full frame is much more noticable

    regardless that it's a great lens... and for that price just a bargain
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