35mm f/1.8G AND 50mm f/1.8G

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by saleta_lawrence, Mar 13, 2012.

  1. So, I went shopping tonight after lots of research about which lens to purchase for my Nikon D90, and I ended up purchasing both the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G AND 50mm f/1.8G. My goal is to focus on engagement sessions, infant photography, and bridals (not necessarily weddings at this point). I felt like the 35mm would be essential for infant photography, but a 50mm would be better suited for engagement sessions and other portraits as it's such a "classic" portrait lens.
    But, now I'm having buyers remorse about it all. Does it seem redundant to have both of these lenses? I also have a 18-105mm kit lens that I was using as my main walk-around lens before purchasing these two lenses.
    So, did my "Homework" before purchasing, but feel like I made a bad choice anyway. Ooops. Any thoughts?
  2. You now have the option to shoot a f2 or f2.2, which is an area that your VR18-105mm lens can't venture....
    Just practice using your 'new' additions until you are comfortable with the lenses.
  3. What you are feeling isn't unusual. Parting with money isn't easy. But once you receive and begin using your new lenses, your buyers remorse will disappear. Both are excellent lenses. Both are great choices!
  4. Not only are these both great lenses they are excellent values in the Nikon line up. Enjoy them and shoot a bunch, best of luck with your business!
  5. The wider angle of the 35mm makes it more versatile than the 50mm. You can always crop to make up the difference between 35 and 50mm. But, the 50mm with the crop factor makes a good inexpensive portrait lens. The 35mm is a little short for good head or head and shoulder shots. Since that was your plan when buying the lenses, I'd stick to the plan. You can always sell one of the lenses later if the plan doesn't work out.
  6. personally? i'd return the 50/1.8 and get somethign more specialized, like the the CV 58/1.4, tamron 60/2, or nikon 85/1.8G. not a huge fan of 50mm on DX, but some people like it, so there you go.
  7. I have both these lenses as results of some recent buying impulses. I am keeping both for sure (despite having two other 35mm primes and one other 50mm). The fact that they're relatively close in terms of focal length does not mean they actually do the same (as Mark points out).
    Both lenses do absolutely stun me with their quality, esp. given their price. They're excellent value for money, and deliver realy good results from wide open on. You're going to love them. Probably both. And probably both for different reasons and uses :)

    If you'd really have to part with one of them, then I'd keep the 35mm. Very much for the reason Eric gave. I like the 50mm f/1.8G quite a lot, but it remains a bit an in-between-things focal length.
  8. I have a 35mm G and the older 50mm f1.8D. When I got the 35 I thought I'd sell the 50, but I'm glad to have both.
    The 50 may not be the "ideal" portrait lens, but for head and shoulder stuff and for two or three people instead of just one... it's great on DX.
    imho, keep both.
  9. Like Peter Hamm, I have the 35mm f1.8G and the 50mm f1.8D. I too use both in similar circumstances. The 50mm is great when you're just poking around in a group of people without being so 'in your face'. An advantage of the D lens over the G is that it's fully usable on cheap manual extension tubes for close in work - with the G you can't set the aperture.
  10. Should have skipped one of the lenses for a macro lens such as the Nikon 40 2.8 or Tokina 35 2.8. Macro is very useful when shooting babies (feet, hand, etc) and bridal (rings and other small stuff).
  11. If you are worried about them being too close in focal length, return the 50mm as has been suggested and pick up an 85mm F/1.8G. I've owned the 35mm F/1.8G, F/1.4G, 50mm F/1.4G & F/1.8D, 85mm F/1.8D & F/1.4G. Although the 50mms are nice, the spread between 35mm & 85mm is about perfect. Keep in mind there are quite a few lenses between 50mm & 85mms that are faster than F/2.8 but relatively inexpensive (the 2 50mm F/1.8's the 2 85mm F/1.8's, and the 60mm Tameron F/2). However wide angle lenses faster than F/2.8, you are pretty much limited to the 35mm F/1.8. There is of course the 24mm & 35mm F/1.4 lenses, but they are extremely expensive and the 35mm F/1.4 is a horrible waste of money if you shoot DX. There is the 35mm F/2 & but it is also considerably more than the 35mm F/1.8G, as well as the Sigma's 30mm F/1.4 is more than twice as expensive for less than a stop of gain. So what I'm trying to get at is, you've basically get the best reasonably priced wide angle prime, so if you feel they are too close, the logical thing to do is replace the 50mm where you have a few more options in the telephoto realm like the 85mm F/1.8D which is excellent performer or the Tameron's 60mm macro which is also excellent and offers the bonus of being a macro or if you've got some extra cash the new 85mm F/1.8G is supposed to be amazing.
  12. A 35mm lens and 50mm lens on a DX camera is not redundant at all. One is a normal lens, and the other is a short telephoto. I think you are smart to try and have one of each. However, I agree with Eric that as far as telephoto goes, I find the prime focal length of 50mm to be rather limited on a DX camera. I used a 50mm f/1.8 a bit when I was on vacation with my D90 last summer, since it was small and light, and I kept wishing that I had a bit longer lens. The Tamron 60mm f/2 has good bokeh wide open and stopped down and is just perfect as a classic portrait focal length, so it would probably be my first choice as a complement to your 35mm. It's 20% more zoomed in compared to a 50mm lens, which gives that beautiful rendition. If you have a little working distance, then I also agree with the above that an 85mm f/1.8G or one of the Sigma, Tamron or Tokina lenses in the range (90-100mm) would be a good choice instead as a long portrait lens, but you start having to be pretty far away from your subject.
    If you're doing portraiture and paid work, while the 18-105mm has impressive enough optics, even that cheap 35mm f/1.8G lens beats it. Plus, the larger aperture gives you more creative freedom with regards to exposure and depth of field, and it's smaller and easier to wield on your camera. I know that if I were hiring a photographer to take photos of me and my family, even though skill far outweighs gear when it boils down to it, I would still be disappointed and a little hesitant if the photographer showed up to do her work with a kit lens. You should definitely be willing to invest in serious optics without thinking twice if you're expecting to charge money for your work.
  13. I love the 35mm DX when shooting my 5 months old baby. Absolutely lovely, and fast. I only miss a somewhat better bokeh. On the other hand, I'd love to have the 50mm to take pics of mum with the kid. I don't think you'll end up regretting your choice, although subsituting the 50mm for the 60mm G macro could have been a good idea (if money is no object, that is).
  14. Should have skipped one of the lenses for a macro lens such as the Nikon 40 2.8 or Tokina 35 2.8. Macro is very useful when shooting babies (feet, hand, etc) and bridal (rings and other small stuff).
    There is the 35mm F/2 & but it is also considerably more than the 35mm F/1.8G, as well as the Sigma's 30mm F/1.4 is more than twice as expensive for less than a stop of gain.​
    i do have the tokina 35/2.8 as well as the 35/1.8 and 30/1.4. the tokina focuses amazingly close and is sharper than anything in its class at any aperture. but sometimes 2.8 just isnt fast enough for low-light or you want a more blurred background. that's where the 30/1.4 shines. it has creamy bokeh and defocuses backgrounds much better than the 35/1.8. that said, i would keep the 35 and sell the 50 if i were the OP, because it is a useful focal length on DX.
    as far as telephoto goes, I find the prime focal length of 50mm to be rather limited on a DX camera.​
    the 50/1.8 was cool at first--my first prime, actually--but now that i (somewhat) know what i'm doing, and have an idea of how i want to do it, i just almost never use it anymore for DX. i shoot 50mm a lot more on FX, but there i use the sigma 50/1.4 aka "king of bokeh."
    it's really not a big deal if you're just starting out to use a 50 for a bit and then move on since they're inexpensive, but something like the tamron 60/2 would be more versatile in the long-term since it's a macro lens, has a faster f-stop, and is closer to classic portrait length on APS-C. looks to have decent bokeh as well, though not as good as the CV 58/1.4. have to say i've been impressed with what ive seen so far from the 85/1.8G, which looks like a winner. if i didnt already have an 85/1.4, i'd want that for sure.
  15. You will enjoy the new lenses..just give it time. and now you can zoom with your feet.
  16. No Jim, you can't zoom with your feet, because it changes perspective. While I love primes, "zoom with your feet" doesn't work, because it changes the scene.
    Plus, a lens at 50mm has inherently greater depth of field than a shooting the same scene with a 60mm or 85mm lens. Zooming with your feet gives up creative control.
  17. You can also "zoom with your feet" (Ariel is right, though - no such thing) with a zoomlens. It has to do with looking for the right perspective and composition, and the matching focal length to realise that idea. It has little to do with prime lenses.
  18. I think there's been a misunderstanding of the point of "zoom with your feet". It's not meant to mean that any use of a zoom lens can be replaced by moving closer to or further from the subject. What it really is is a teaching device. Most beginners (and some people who have been doing this long enough that they should have moved past this) think that good photography is just a shot of [a person, object, etc.]. They don't make the jump to a shot that is a composition (that has in it) [a person, object, etc.].
    Zoom lenses reinforce bad habits because a beginner will do things like walk up a path, spot an interesting plant, zoom in on it and shoot, instead of first finding the spot to shoot from (I'll simplify and call that composing) and then using the zoom lens to get the field of view (frame). The novice's use of zoom omits the composing step, but if the novice has a standard prime he's going to have to step off the path and get closer, and if he's got the eye at all he'll start using that repositioning to compose, developing a good habit that translates to shooting with a zoom.
    Zooming with the feet is, of course, often useful anyway - your lens goes down to 28 and you need to step back to get the subjects in the frame. (And really, does anybody think that guy's shot of the plant in tht blog post is improved by the presence of the ugly house? I think he illustrated my point by taking a better shot when the house wasn't in it.) Somebody who understands all this about positioning, as part of composing isn't going to be persuaded by being told to zoom with his feet, but should probably do so anyway sometimes to stay in practice.
  19. Thanks for the suggestions everyone. I'm going back to the store this weekend to play around some more and see if I want to trade anything in, although if I do, it'll be the 50mm.

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