85mm vs. 50mm Is the 85 better?

Joined
Jun 11, 2005
Messages
676
Location
Southern Maine
I have the 50mm 1.8 and am looking at the 85mm 1.8. If anyone has both, I am hoping for a few comments as perference. It seems to me that the 85mm would be better for portraits. I am using a D70. Comments appreciated. Thanks!!
 
Joined
Jan 26, 2005
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Location
San Jose, CA
The "owning both" qualification slowed down your responses, Jonathan. 16 people have read your thread (counting you), but apparently can't meet that criterion.

I don't own either of them, but, fortunately, that won't stop me from offering an opinion ;).

The 85/1.8 isn't any "better" than the 50/1.8, but it would give you additional working distance and increase the degree of isolation you'd be able to achieve when using a wide aperture. The 85/1.4 is considered to the the cream of the crop in portrait lenses, but it comes at a steep price.
 
Joined
Jun 11, 2005
Messages
676
Location
Southern Maine
Thanks for the reply. The extra "working distance" is my concern and what interests me most about the 85mm. The 1.4 would be a dream, but may have to wait(a while).

Jon
 
Joined
May 28, 2005
Messages
884
Location
Toronto, Canada
I have the 85/1.8 and happy with it. Of course, like you and many others, I am lusting for the 1.4 but no hurry right now just because i like the 1.8 also.
 
K

kengo

Guest
I have used both 1.8 versions, but find sharpness to be similar, what I like about the 85mm is given its extra length, isolating the subject and the background is better, subjects seems to pop out more from the background.
 
Joined
Apr 24, 2005
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Denver, CO
I have both and it really depends on what type of portrait you are shooting and how much room you have to work with. Most of my shots are head and shoulders and I prefer the 85. I also think the 85 is sharper than the 50 at the same aperture.
 
R

Removed User 2

Guest
My use of those lenses is divided as such:

85mm for tight crops.
50 and 45mm for full lenght shots.
45 and 85 for american shots (waist and up).

The 45mm always gets used and the 50 stays in the bag. Now, very important part: When I know the output will be heavily enlarged, I use the 50 + 85 1.4 + 85PC.

The 50 and 85 really have different purposes where the 50 usually wins for full lenght shots.
 
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