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Nikon 50mm and 85mm ?

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by HAVOC, May 25, 2005.

  1. I've been advised by several amatuer photographers to buy the Nikon 50mm 1.4 and the 85mm 1.8 lens, they say that pound for pound they represent exceptional value as they are such sharp lenses at a reasonable price ? Whats your experiences of these 2 lens and do you think that they should definetly be on my list of must haves ?
    Thanks for any help on this one, I have the kit 18-70mm, which I love and have ordered a 105mm Sigma.
  2. GeneR

    GeneR Guest

    They are both very good. I replaced a 50mm 1.8 with the 1.4, and I'm not sure that it was worth the cost difference for me. As for the 85 1.8, I used one for 3 or 4 months and liked it a lot for head shots. You can't go wrong with either of the 50mm lenses or with the 85 in my opinion.

    Do you have an SB800 or SB600? If not, that might be more beneficial than these lenses.

    Good shooting,

  3. fks


    Apr 30, 2005
    sf bay area
    hi havoc-

    the 85mm f/1.8 is a nice lens, sharp and contrasty. although the 85mm f/1.4 is a better lens, it's also ~3x the cost of the f/1.8 and heavier.

    as to whether it's a "must have," what kind of photos do you like to take? 85mm on a dslr is a tight portrait lens or a short tele. if that fits your style, then it's a good lens to have. if you're more into landscapes or group shots, you'll be better off with the 12-24mm or something similar.

    i don't use my 85mm that much since i have the 70-200mm VR that covers that focal length. every now and then i'll bring it around if i want a lighter and smaller right (the 70-200mm is a small monster), but lately it's been sitting in my cabinet.
  4. patrickh


    May 4, 2005
    Thousand Oaks
    Two excellent lenses and both are good value for money. Both are extremely sharp, and the only real criticsm would be that the boke of the 50/1.8 is not exceptional (nor exceptionally bad, just a bit yucky). As for advice, the previous comments are spot on - only get them if they suit your style of picture taking.
  5. Personally I think the 50mm f/1.8 is a better lens than the 1.4. Especially for the price. All of the 85mm lenses are fantastic.
  6. Igor


    May 15, 2005
    Ukraine, Europe
    I agree, all 50/1.8 are better (OK, SLIGHTLY better :)  ) than 50/1.4.

    As for the 85mm, I'd go with AIS 85mm f/1.4, the VERY best of them all. period.
  7. I shoot with the 50/1.4 and the 85/1.4. Great lenses. I upgraded both from the 1.8 versions. I felt the 50/1.4 was sharper at f/2.8 and below versus the 50/1.8 plus the bokeh was much better. Plus the upgrade cost me only about $100 so it was worth it. The 85/1.8 is a very sharp lens but the bokeh can be harsh. The 85/1.4 has incredible bokeh and it's sharp even at f/2, though the cost to upgrade was much steeper. I felt both 1.4s were a notch up in contrast and saturation. Buy what you can afford, you really can't go wrong with any of them.
  8. Jonathan


    Jun 11, 2005
    Southern Maine
    It's threads like this that cause me to spend more money(lol)
  9. I use my 85mm F1.8 for action shots of dougies. It's a GREAT lens and I'm satisfied with the bokeh on it. Note: I only use it at F2.8 or smaller. For my purposes, anything less than F2.8 is not useable.

    I have a 50mm F1.8 and it's a fine lens.............. exceptionally small. I don't use it very often at all because it's too long for landscapes and too short for portraits or action shots.

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