Is the Nikon 50 1.8 or 50 1.4 better or same?

Joined
Mar 25, 2011
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atlanta ga
I guess the obvious answer is 1.4 is better maybe? But as far as optics are concerned is the 1.4 sharper? I was looking at photozone.de and the numbers are close. I don't know the difference in bokeh between 1.4 and 1.8. People always seem to like 1.4 much better than 1.8 (at least on the Canon side).
 
Joined
May 8, 2011
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Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
this may be outs of place question but - are you talking about "D" or "G" version of this lens? I would assume D since G has not come out yet.

i do not have much experience with 1.8 but I was not very happy with 1.4 when I had it. Second copy was better but still not where I wanted.
 
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
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atlanta ga
this may be outs of place question but - are you talking about "D" or "G" version of this lens? I would assume D since G has not come out yet.

i do not have much experience with 1.8 but I was not very happy with 1.4 when I had it. Second copy was better but still not where I wanted.

What did it not have that you wanted?
 
Joined
Mar 15, 2009
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Los Angeles, CA
I had a 50 1.8D that wasn't very sharp wide open.. had to stop down to f/2.8 - f/4 but by then it was really sharp. Now I've never owned a 1.4D but the wide open images look to be the same as my 1.8D, and it has a LOT of CA, probably even more than the 1.8D. The 1.4G that I had was actually sharp wide open, but also has some CA.

Personally I would pass on all 3 and wait for the new 50/1.8G. From the samples I've seen, I think it has "that" look that modern lenses deliver.
 
Joined
Nov 21, 2009
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Baton Rouge, La.
I had a 1.8D, 1.4D and now a 1.4G. The 1.4G is better than the other two wide open or close to it - no contest. That said, I doubt that anyone could ever tell the difference by f4.
 
Joined
May 8, 2011
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Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
just as JGI said - both my copies has fare amount of CA in places where should not be. Also general feel wide open was a bit soft and under contrasted.

I sold them all and waiting for new one to try.
 
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
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atlanta ga
But is the bokeh bad on 1.8 as opposed to 1.4? I'm trying to justify the expense of the 1.4 but if it's not $300 - $400 better then I don't want to spend it. On the other hand, I've never seen a professional shooting with the cheapie lens so I figure they know something I don't.
 
Joined
Oct 11, 2007
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Missouri
I can't vouch for the bokeh of the 1.4, but I did not like the bokeh at all on the 1.8. That combined with the lack of adequate sharpness wide open is why I moved on to the Sigma 50mm f1.4.
 
Joined
Feb 10, 2009
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St. Paul, MN
I've had and shot the 2 x 50 1.8D, 50 1.4D, 2 x 50 1.4G, and Sigma 50 1.4 HSM. The to be released 50 1.8G looks like a pretty sweet lens.

I was very unimpressed with the 50 1.4D. I thought it was soft and lacked contrast to the point of barely useable at 1.4 (might have been my copy?).

The 50 1.8D is a utility lens. Resonably fast, sharp at f/2 (acceptable at 1.8), super sharp by 2.8, and bokeh is meh (it is pretty busy).

the 50 1.4G is a better lens than both all around, hands down.

The sigma is a bit better still, but I found the size and weight to be a little off-putting, and I currently own the 50 1.4G.

I have my eye on the to be released 50 1.8G though, if it performs as well as it looks in the released samples, I may end up selling off the 1.4G and putting the difference towards an 85 1.4.
 
Joined
Nov 21, 2009
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Baton Rouge, La.
I have a 1.8G preordered because of that. Hard to beat at the price if it performs as well as the 35, and no reason to think that it won't.
 
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Messages
3,969
Location
Chicago
Buy a G 1.4. My 1.8 D is useable but suffers focus shift which is annoying as can be. No good for close work at all because of this.

1.4 AiS is pretty soft at 1.4. the 1.8 AiS is pretty decent

The G, while not perfect, is the best of the bunch.

If you want closer to perfect, 60 2.8 N.
 
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
760
Location
DFW, texas
I had a 50 1.8D that wasn't very sharp wide open.. had to stop down to f/2.8 - f/4 but by then it was really sharp.

same here... if I use my 50 1.8D, it is at f/2.8 - f/4 and I'm not crazy about the bokeh... love the Sigma 50 1.4
 
Joined
Jan 9, 2008
Messages
596
Location
Royal Oak, MI USA
Both my 50/1.8 Ai and 50/1.8 AFD are soft wide open, ridiculously sharp at f2.5. My 50/1.4 Ais is soft wide open, sharpens up nicely by f2 and by 2.5 equals the other two. Frankly I think the 50/1.8 is all one needs.
 

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