Nikon 35mm f1.8 or 50mm f1.4??


lsfchris

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Jul 26, 2010
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#1
Hi people. I'm a D90 user and i'm keen on buying one of the following prime lens.
- Nikon 35mm f1.8
- Nikon 50mm f1.4

So my questions are, which lens will be optimal for portrait and walkabout shoots?
For portrait, i guess i would prefer a full body shoot.
For walkabout, i guess being able to walk around with minimal weight is definitely optimal.

Any comments are welcome and of coz other lens options can be considered too. Thanks.
 

daredevil123

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Oct 25, 2005
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lil red dot
#2
Hi people. I'm a D90 user and i'm keen on buying one of the following prime lens.
- Nikon 35mm f1.8
- Nikon 50mm f1.4

So my questions are, which lens will be optimal for portrait and walkabout shoots?
For portrait, i guess i would prefer a full body shoot.
For walkabout, i guess being able to walk around with minimal weight is definitely optimal.

Any comments are welcome and of coz other lens options can be considered too. Thanks.
between these two, 35/1.8 is the one you should look for.

But I recommend a 24mm or 28mm for walkabout.
 

Kopred

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Jul 25, 2010
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#3
between these two, 35/1.8 is the one you should look for.

But I recommend a 24mm or 28mm for walkabout.
Nikon dun have 24mm/28mm right?
So i guess it's a 3rd party lens?
 

Nov 14, 2009
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Upper Bukit Timah
#6
I have the 35/1.8 and 50/1.8, both by Nikon.

If you're only going for versatility, then get the 35/1.8. On a D90, you will get an effective focal length of 52.5mm, whereas the 50/1.4 will give you an effective 75mm focal length. This may be too tight on some occasions for general purpose shooting. The 35/1.8 will be more likely to meet your needs of shooting full body portraits too.

Do note however that the 35/1.8 is DX-only, in case you intend to get a FX-body in the near future.
 

daredevil123

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Oct 25, 2005
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lil red dot
#7
I have the 35/1.8 and 50/1.8, both by Nikon.

If you're only going for versatility, then get the 35/1.8. On a D90, you will get an effective focal length of 52.5mm, whereas the 50/1.4 will give you an effective 75mm focal length. This may be too tight on some occasions for general purpose shooting. The 35/1.8 will be more likely to meet your needs of shooting full body portraits too.

Do note however that the 35/1.8 is DX-only, in case you intend to get a FX-body in the near future.
I would both are versatile in their own ways.

On DX:
50mm is very versatile as a portrait lens. Step a little back you get 50mm FOV. Step a little forward you get 85mm FOV.
35mm is versatile as a normal lens. Street photography... and some portrait work. But the 50 will excel better in portraiture than the 35.

But also note that versatility depends on your shooting style. To different people, different lens are more versatile to them.

FYI, I sold my 35/1.8 after 5 months. But I still held on to my 50/1.4.
 

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daredevil123

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Oct 25, 2005
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lil red dot
#8
24mm 1.4G... :bigeyes:

any more cheaper?
Of course there are:

24mm/2.8 AF-D and Ais. Both are quite cheap
28mm/1.4 AF-D (actually this one is also quite ex).
28mm/2.8 Ais (this one quite cheap)

So there are many options...

You can go 3rd party also:

Sigma 28/1.8
Sigma 24/1.8
Sigma 20/1.8

And don't just assume 3rd party lens is no good. Samples of 24/1.8 on DX for you, just look at the amazing bokeh:



 

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Blur Shadow

Senior Member
Sep 17, 2005
4,886
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#9
Hi people. I'm a D90 user and i'm keen on buying one of the following prime lens.
- Nikon 35mm f1.8
- Nikon 50mm f1.4

So my questions are, which lens will be optimal for portrait and walkabout shoots?
For portrait, i guess i would prefer a full body shoot.
For walkabout, i guess being able to walk around with minimal weight is definitely optimal.

Any comments are welcome and of coz other lens options can be considered too. Thanks.
You can acheive a full body shot with both the Nikon AF-S 35mm f/1.4G and the Nikon AF 50mm f/1.4D if you have sufficient space to move. The question is, do you?

Both are certainly lightweight enough for kids to carry, so I don't think you have issues with weight.
 

lsfchris

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Jul 26, 2010
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Singapore
#11
Thanks everyone for the knowledge and information.

In regards to the 50mm 1.4f, it seems to be a most have and must keep prime lens for Nikon users. Correct me if I'm wrong.

dd123, nice shots you have there. Just to mention that I've a nikon 60mm 2.8f macro lens and sigma 24mm 1.8f is also a marco lens. So can i use the 60mm instead? Somehow i feel this is a dumb qn but that's what a newbie is for. Ask questions. :bsmilie:

And therefore, between nikon 28mm 2.8f and sigma 24mm 1.8f, which is recommended for walkabout when one is a wide angle lens and the other a macro lens. And from here onwards, i'm slightly confused. Personally i've considered getting the nikon 2.8mm. ^^

Sorry for the trouble guys but I do appreciate the feedback. Thanks.
 

daredevil123

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Oct 25, 2005
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lil red dot
#12
Thanks everyone for the knowledge and information.

In regards to the 50mm 1.4f, it seems to be a most have and must keep prime lens for Nikon users. Correct me if I'm wrong.

dd123, nice shots you have there. Just to mention that I've a nikon 60mm 2.8f macro lens and sigma 24mm 1.8f is also a marco lens. So can i use the 60mm instead? Somehow i feel this is a dumb qn but that's what a newbie is for. Ask questions. :bsmilie:

And therefore, between nikon 28mm 2.8f and sigma 24mm 1.8f, which is recommended for walkabout when one is a wide angle lens and the other a macro lens. And from here onwards, i'm slightly confused. Personally i've considered getting the nikon 2.8mm. ^^

Sorry for the trouble guys but I do appreciate the feedback. Thanks.
One thing you need to understand about Sigma, they like to call everything macro. If you go look at their lens line-up, I think a lot of them have the 'MACRO' designation. But if you look closely, they are not really macro lenses. Rather, they can focus quite closely...

24/1.8 is a fast wide prime if you use it in FF camera, it will be very wide. On a DX, it gives you FOV of about 35mm, which is a good focal length to work with. Some people calls this a wide normal lens. At 35mm, distortion for people shots can still be managed well. And F1.8 really helps. I would love to have the 24/1.4G but the price range is a little out of my justification reach at the moment. One thing I like about this lens is that since it is slightly wider than a 35/1.8 or 30/1.4, if gives you a little of that wide feeling that make things look a little more 'dynamic', while at the same time, not wide enough to give too much problems in distortion. But the sigma 24/1.8 do allow you to get in very close and shoot some interesting angles. Here is one my people shots with this lens...

*edit* removed now that TS has seen it...

One thing though, due to the recent Sigma price adjustments, this lens is no longer that cheap. It costs over $700. And with all Sigma lenses, they really shine if the focus is spot on, if not, you need to send it in to Sigma Service center to get it calibrated since your D90 does not come with AF fine tuning.

Also, for me, F2.8 primes do not make sense to me personally. This is because I already have a 17-50/2.8 which is quite sharp wide open. So if I get anything F2.8, it is just repetitive for me. And I need apertures faster than F2.8 for ambient light shooting.

As for what is really useful for you, you need to understand your shooting style, and from that determine your needs in terms of focal length. Not everyone shoots the same. You have to find a mix that suits you. All I can do here is to give you suggestions and some ideas. You have to see if they fit your shooting styles/needs.
 

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daredevil123

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Oct 25, 2005
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lil red dot
#13
In regards to the 50mm 1.4f, it seems to be a most have and must keep prime lens for Nikon users. Correct me if I'm wrong.
50/1.4 is a good lens. I have the AF-D version. But seriously, it is only slightly better than the 50/1.8, and the F1.8 version is just so cheap. F1.4 gives you slightly more speed and bokeh is more pleasing (to me, at least, since this has been a topic of hot debate). If you are more into it as a hobby, I feel that the 50/1.8 is sufficient. But if you have the budget for it, feel free to go to town and get the F1.4D or even the F1.4G version.

Note that the wider the lens, the harder it is to get more background blur. And also, the further you are away from the subject the harder it is to get more background blur.

*edit* removed now that TS has seen it...

hopes this helps.
 

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kentwong81

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Jun 18, 2010
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#14
For me, I think the 35mm is more for street photography or point & shoot. It is very fast(f1.8) to let you shoot something sharp and clear in low light. That's all about it. No special effect like creamy bokeh or wide-angle view, but it is rather important sometimes when you don't wish to miss shooting something interesting which is fast-moving in low light.
Do correct me if I am wrong.
If you want to shoot portraits with creamy bokeh, you can ignore the 35mm and go ahead to get the 50mm or 85mm.
 

daredevil123

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Oct 25, 2005
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lil red dot
#15
For me, I think the 35mm is more for street photography or point & shoot. It is very fast(f1.8) to let you shoot something sharp and clear in low light. That's all about it. No special effect like creamy bokeh or wide-angle view, but it is rather important sometimes when you don't wish to miss shooting something interesting which is fast-moving in low light.
Do correct me if I am wrong.
If you want to shoot portraits with creamy bokeh, you can ignore the 35mm and go ahead to get the 50mm or 85mm.
creamy bokeh is not all about the focal length. The sigma 30/1.4 is almost same focal length as the 35/1.8 but yet, its bokeh is very creamy... See this:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/angelograce/2623662171/
 

lsfchris

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Jul 26, 2010
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#16
Really love that pic with the little girl in it with the sigma 24mm 1.8f. The bokeh is awesome and this is the kind of pictures i would like to achieve. Now I really would love to have that beautiful lens and capture my wife and children with it. dd123, thanks for helping me understand myself more as a newbie. Guess its time to save up for this lens.
 

kentwong81

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Jun 18, 2010
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#17
For that lovely picture with the little girl, the nice bokeh was achieved by shooting the little girl at a very close distance right? Can 35mm or 30mm achieve the same bokeh when I shoot the little girl at a further distance, say 3-4 steps back? :think:
 

daredevil123

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Oct 25, 2005
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#18
For that lovely picture with the little girl, the nice bokeh was achieved by shooting the little girl at a very close distance right? Can 35mm or 30mm achieve the same bokeh when I shoot the little girl at a further distance, say 3-4 steps back? :think:
yes, of course it is close, the girl almost touched my lens. :bsmilie:


For your question of 35mm or 30mm.... The longer the focal length, the easier it is to get more OOF background blur.

Did you see my link 2 posts up? Here it is again...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/angelograce/2623662171/

Shot with Sigma 30mm/1.4, it is possible, if you know how to shoot it.
 

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daredevil123

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Oct 25, 2005
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lil red dot
#19
Really love that pic with the little girl in it with the sigma 24mm 1.8f. The bokeh is awesome and this is the kind of pictures i would like to achieve. Now I really would love to have that beautiful lens and capture my wife and children with it. dd123, thanks for helping me understand myself more as a newbie. Guess its time to save up for this lens.
Thank you. The cute-ness of my niece helped immensely to make the photo look nicer than it actually is. ;)

And yes, that is the signature creamy bokeh from Sigma fast primes. Sigma 30/1.4 and 50/1.4 has even better bokeh...
 

cichlid

Senior Member
Dec 2, 2006
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#20
One thing you need to understand about Sigma, they like to call everything macro. If you go look at their lens line-up, I think a lot of them have the 'MACRO' designation. But if you look closely, they are not really macro lenses. Rather, they can focus quite closely...

24/1.8 is a fast wide prime if you use it in FF camera, it will be very wide. On a DX, it gives you FOV of about 35mm, which is a good focal length to work with. Some people calls this a wide normal lens. At 35mm, distortion for people shots can still be managed well. And F1.8 really helps. I would love to have the 24/1.4G but the price range is a little out of my justification reach at the moment. One thing I like about this lens is that since it is slightly wider than a 35/1.8 or 30/1.4, if gives you a little of that wide feeling that make things look a little more 'dynamic', while at the same time, not wide enough to give too much problems in distortion. But the sigma 24/1.8 do allow you to get in very close and shoot some interesting angles. Here is one my people shots with this lens...



One thing though, due to the recent Sigma price adjustments, this lens is no longer that cheap. It costs over $700. And with all Sigma lenses, they really shine if the focus is spot on, if not, you need to send it in to Sigma Service center to get it calibrated since your D90 does not come with AF fine tuning.

Also, for me, F2.8 primes do not make sense to me personally. This is because I already have a 17-50/2.8 which is quite sharp wide open. So if I get anything F2.8, it is just repetitive for me. And I need apertures faster than F2.8 for ambient light shooting.

As for what is really useful for you, you need to understand your shooting style, and from that determine your needs in terms of focal length. Not everyone shoots the same. You have to find a mix that suits you. All I can do here is to give you suggestions and some ideas. You have to see if they fit your shooting styles/needs.
Hi

Nice shot!

This photo is shot using the Sigma 24mm f1.8 with FX or DX body?

Edit: What about your other shots shown here, FX or DX body?

Thanks!
 

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