Need a 35mm lens for my D7000

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by steve_r.|2, Jul 2, 2011.

  1. Hello everyone. I'm new to the forum. I'm just returning to photography after a very long absence. I've just bought my first DSLR - a D7000, and am now trying to decide on a lens to get started with. I'm looking for opinions on the 35 f/1.8G vs. the 35 f/2.0D. Is the latter a significantly better lens? It will be used as an all-purpose lens.
    Thanks for the feedback?
     
  2. By the way, I tried doing a search prior to posting to see if this question was asked before, but I kept getting a google error. Has anyone else experienced this?
     
  3. The former is a significantly better lens. I would strongly recommend the 35 f/1.8.
    Note, I have the 35 f/2 instead (on a D300), and it's not a bad lens by any stretch of imagination. It's not very good at f/2, decent at f/2.8 and fine from f/4 on. But from all I've seen, the f/1.8 DX lens is just sharper, better contrast, better wide open and half the price. Would it have been available at the time, I sure would have chosen the f/1.8.
    You may want to check www.photozone.de, who tested both lenses. Their tests are a bit dry, but the results between these 2 are pretty clear.
     
  4. +1 for the 35mm f/1.8
    The 35mm f/2 is an old lens. Most old lenses don't do well on the D7000 and the 35mm f/2 is no exception.
    The 35mm f/1.8 is a fairly new lens with new technology, better glass, and an AF-S motor. Additionally the 35mm f/1.8 only costs $199 and the 35mm f/2 is $350.
    Unless you decide you are going to purchase an FX format DSLR in the near future, the 35mm f/1.8 DX is the clear winner!
    RS
     
  5. According to bythom.com, it's an easy choice. The new DX f1.8 lens is the choice for DX applications.
    I own one and use it very happily on my D90. Everything I always loved about a normal lens.
    FAST focusing, great image, bokeh is okay.
     
  6. Is there something else I should be considering?
     
  7. You could consider Nikon's new 35mm f/1.4G, but that's about 8X the price of the 35mm f/1.8 DX coming in somewhere around $1699.
    It's a beautiful lens...big, heavy, and as good as it gets in the 35mm focal length. I have mine attached to one camera quite often since I use it in conjunction with an 85mm f/1.4 when shooting events PJ style.
    RS
     
  8. In 35mm, I'd say the 1.8G, no question. There are those who will recommend the Sigma 30/1.4 - it has pluses and minuses, overall I like the 35/1.8. The other one I like is the new 50/1.8G, which is a big improvement over the 50/1.8D, but it's a longer focal length of course.
     
  9. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Nikon's 35mm/f1.8 AF-S DX is a fine lens. I have used two samples a year or two ago prior to the introduction of the D7000; in other words, I have never used that exact combo the OP is interested in. The main drawback for the 35mm/f1.8 DX is a moderate amount of chromatic aberration.
     
  10. Another endorsement for the 35mm 1.8 DX AFS. It's an excellent combination with my D7000. In fact, it hasn't come off the camera since I got it. The kit lens is in storage.
     
  11. I briefly owned both and did several quick tests between the two and decided to keep the 35mm f2 so I could use it on my FX body in addition to the D7000. I found little difference, if any between the two. If you have no intention of going to FX, the f1.8 is possibly a better choice. You won't be disappointed with either.
     
  12. I tried the NIkon 35mm f1.8 and the Sigma 30mm f1.4 side by side on my D300. The Sigma 30mm f1.4 is a better lens in every way. It's sharper, better built, a bit faster, and has less CA. It also is a touch wider and puts more distance between it and 50mm. The Nikon is a consumer grade lens and the Sigma is a pro grade lens. If you have the couple of hundred extra, this is the lens to get. I was patient and got a good deal on one on e Bay.
    Kent in SD
     
  13. Kent, there are those who disagree. I think it has a lot to do with sample variation. Some report loving the Sigma for
    the bokeh, others report that it is not sharp and have sample shots to show it.
     
  14. Thanks for the feedback everyone. I guess part of my hesitation with the f1.8 is the feel of it. When i pick it up, it just doesn't feel like a quality lens. Do all of the new lenses feel like this now? I'm guess I'm a little disappointed that it's made in China as well. I thought the Nikon lenses were made in Japan. Perhaps my frame of reference is dated. Am I expecting too much? Does the Sigma like a better quality lens? Where is it made out of curiosity?
     
  15. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Well, the Sigma 30mm/f1.4 lens currently goes for $489 at B&H: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/381616-REG/Sigma_300306_30mm_f_1_4_EX_DC.html
    For a while there was some shortage of the Nikon 35mm/f1.8 AF-S DX, but that shortage is now over and the price is back down to $200: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/606792-USA/Nikon_2183_AF_S_Nikkor_35mm_f_1_8G.html
    In other words, the Sigma is about 2.5 times more expensive. If it is not "better," who is going to spend that much more? And the fact that the Sigma is a bit wider is an advantage or disadvantage highly depends on which angle of view one prefers. I happen to think the Nikon 35mm/f1.8 AF-S DX is a major bargain, but I don't have one since I am not crazy about the 50mm field of view on FX, and 35mm on DX is quite close to it.
    Nikon's 50mm/f1.4 AF-S, 50mm/f1.8 AF-S and 35mm/f1.8 AF-S DX are all made in China. So is my new 105mm/f2.8 AF-S macro. I also own various Nikon bodies and lenses made in their Thailand factory, including the 24-120mm/f4 AF-S VR, etc. I think they are all well made. If Nikon produced the 35mm/f1.8 AF-S DX in Japan, I have little doubt that the cost would have been much higher.
     
  16. Steve, most of the lenses feel like that now - the exceptions being the very expensive ones. If that bothers you
    enough, you might look for a used 35mm AIS lens, since your D7000 can meter with it - but manual focus on a DX
    camera isn't the best. FWIW, despite the plasticky feel the 35/1.8 has never given me any problems.
     
  17. The Sigma 30mm is very solid in feel and weight. It's not like the old lenses from the 70s, but it's a lot more solid than Nikon's consumer lenses. I'm an adventurous outdoor photographer and shoot in all conditions. Lens has held up perfectly. I tend to use my NIkon 17-55mm f2.8 a lot more though, as I love the flexibility of a fast zoom. I shoot at night a lot, especially in winter. But yeah, having tried both, the Sigma is much more solid. Either would like hold up in amatuer use.
    Kent in SD
     
  18. I agree with Kent's thoughts on the 30/1.4 from Sigma, which I certainly like, compared to Nikon's recipe (not counting
    Nikon's 35/1.4, which is stellar, and should be at that price).
     
  19. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    I have never used the Sigma 30mm/f1.4, so I cannot comment on it, but again, for 2.5 times the cost, it'd better have some advantages.
    I realize that a lot of people evaluate quality by weight. Personally, I think Nikon's 50mm/f1.4 AF-S, 50mm/f1.8 AF-S and 35mm/f1.8 DX AF-S are fine as far as construction quality goes. Those are fairly small lenses and you don't need a heavy-duty metal barrel to hold it together. However, I sure don't want that type of plastic construction on my 200-400mm/f4 AF-S VR.
    But if a plastic barrel or the country of manufacturing bother you, you need to find alternatives. The 35mm/f2 AF-D has a plastic barrel as well, and I am not sure that going to a manual-focus AI-S version is a good idea.
     
  20. I believe that regardless of where the lens is built, it is built to Nikon's standards and theoretically if it is built in China or Japan, it should be identical.
    A heavy lens doesn't necessarily mean better IQ and a light lens doesn't necessarily mean lesser IQ (I am not being critical of any lens being discussed here or elsewhere, just a general observation).
     
  21. Shun--
    I always suggest being patient and looking for a used lens on e Bay, KEH, etc. I think I paid about $350 for the Sigma, in mint condition. I rarely buy anything new if I can help it. When I buy used, I'm more likley to get back what I paid when I resell. I'm not judging it by its weight, but by its performance. I like the f1.4 and slightly wider FL. It's the only single focal length lens I bring along with me on my daily travels any more. The new Nikon 35mm f1.4G likely is a better lens, but I don't think I'd use it often enough to justify the purchase.
    Kent in SD
     
  22. Steve,
    Honestly, no matter what lens you will pick from Sigma 30/1.4, Nikon 35/1.8 DX or Nikon 35/2 AF-D - you'll not be disappointed. But if I understand right, this would be your only lens, at least in the beginning... Don't understand me wrong... I am a fan of shooting with primes and 80% this is what I use. But if is your only lens, I'd recommend to start with a 17-50/2.8 from Tamron - a lens that does not require to break the bank but gives you a very good range at a very good IQ. My 2 cents...
     
  23. Is there something else I should be considering?​
    sigma 30/1.4, also the tokina 35/2.8 macro. have to agree with kent and matt, the sigma is better than the 35/1.8 in almost every way (except cost), although the tokina is sharper than either of them @2.8. whether the sigma's price is justifiable is a matter of personal choice.
    since i have both the 35/1.8 and the 30/1.4,i can say that the differences between them are more than build quality and price. besides being sharper, the sigma has substantially better bokeh. if you shoot a lot of shallow DoF photography, or want to, it's well worth it for this reason. OTOH, the nikon is much smaller and more compact.it takes up a lot less room in a bag and can fit in a shirt pocket. it's also a little bit better in the corners when stopped down than the sigma .
    if you don't care about a sub-2.8 aperture and/or want excellent closeup performance, the tokina is the best choice for IQ. if you do need sub-2.8 performance and pleasant bokeh, the sigma is the best choice. for an inexpensive jack of all trades prime, the nikon qualifies. it's not the best at anything, but does everything reasonably well.
    you might also want to consider the new 50/1.8 G for portraits.
     
  24. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Shun--
    I always suggest being patient and looking for a used lens on e Bay, KEH, etc. I think I paid about $350 for the Sigma, in mint condition. I rarely buy anything new if I can help it.​
    Kent, if your preference is to buy used, that is fine. However, when compare prices, we should compare apples to apples. You should only compare prices for used Sigma lenses to prices for used Nikon lenses. Generally speaking, 3rd-party lenses depreciate faster and are harder to sell; that is good if you are buying used 3rd-party lenses, not so good if you are selling.
    Moreover, one should also take issues such as warranties, the risk and hassle for buying used, the possibility of having to return it, etc. into account. As I said, those are all the OP's personal choices. It is his money to spend and if there are consequences, it is his responsibility to handle.
     
  25. One more recommendation for the Sigma.
    I prefer a "normal" nearly equal to the image diagonal. My favorite normals back in the flim days were an old Nikon 45mm f2.8 GN and a Cosina Voigtlander 40mm f2.0 Aspherical Ultron. That "brackets" the 43.3mm diagonal of 35mm. The 50mm f1.8 and 1.4 are a compromise forced by physics (a true symmetrical f1.4 double Gauss that clears a 39mm mirror is 58mm, after that failed in the marketplace, companies like Nikon and Topcon brought out the more complicated, lower performing 50mm f1.4 as a "compromise" between the 43mm that photographers wanted and the 58mm that was easy to build). I find the 50mm lenses to be a touch "long" for my personal taste as to what a normal should do.
    When I "went digital", I found my favorite "normals" were a 28mm f2.8 AF on the old D100, and a 28mm f2.0 Ai-S, which could meter on my D2X. I contemplated the 28mm f1.4 AF-D. The 35mm lenses, at 52.5mm equivalent, were just too long for me.
    After my "experiences" with the Sigma 400mm f5.6 APO and the 14mm f2.8, I was reluctant to give another Sigma a chance, but the 30mm f1.4 was just too tempting to resist. And I was pleasantly surprised that the lens was sharp, contrasty, acceptably low in distortion, and had a very pleasing bokeh. And it's a 45mm equivalent. OK, it's a fairly bulky, expensive lens that can only deliver the DOF equivalent of a 45mm f2.1 on FF, making it a weird "hybrid" of my 45mm f2.8 Nikkor and 40mm f2.0 Ultron. But it is a nice lens. And I have a lot of 62mm filters, thanks to owning Nikon 60mm f2.8 and 200mm f4 macros, 20mm f2.8 wide, and 70-210mm f4-5.6 AF, a lens that also goes back to my flim days.
    Now, I have a FF body, a D3, but it's "big iron", you don't go walkabout with a D3. I do have new versions of my flim days normals for it, though, a fairly new Nikon 45mm f2.8 Ai-P and CV 40mm f2.8 SL-II Ultron. The D3 looks great with the tiny, silver 45mm Nikon, this big, rectangular slab of a camera, with almost no visible "lens".
    I also had, at one point, a "second system" built around sharp, contrasty, high performance primes, a Pentax K20D with their 31mm f1.8 limited (an amazing lens, arguably the best APS size normal ever made, by anybody) the 77mm f1.8, and the 14mm f2.8. But keeping nearly $3000 tied up in a body and 3 lenses used only for occasional "fun" wasn't tenable at the time, and I eventually set the Pentax free.
    I gave the Nikon 35mm f1.8 a spin, and it's both a touch too long (52.5mm equivalent) and optically just not up to the standard set by the Sigma, which is a weird, weird thing to say in a discussion of a Nikon vs. Sigma lens. It's not up there with the Pentax 31mm f1.8, but the Sigma is better than any Nikon APS normal.
     
  26. Neither the sigma, nikon nor tamron zoom will disappoint.
     
  27. although the tokina is sharper than either of them @2.8.​
    Agree with that, but its also more xpensive than the nikkor 35 1.8, its "slower" (2.8) although its already very sharp at full aperture, and its made in Japan ( the OP finds this an importand fact ...) .
    So some Pro's andd some con's .. ( like always.. :) )
    I think that the Nikkor 35mm 1.8 is so cheap, that you cannot go wrong at that price...
    But the tokina 'draws' such a nice picture and focusses realy close ( 14cm from the "Film Plane") giving 1:1 magnification , i could not resist that eaither so I got them both, and have no regrets ...
     
  28. Just for the record:
    Zeiss
    Distagon T* 1,4/35
    http://www.zeiss.de/C12567A8003B0478/Contents-Frame/30A8526E9DAC1225C12576700040C369
    Regards Axel
     
  29. Is there something else I should be considering?​
    I have the 35 Nikon and haven't seen any weak points yet. If you already have other Nikon lenses there is one thing I haven't heard anybody about. It produces the same type of photos. I also have the 16-85 from Nikon and when set to 35 the 35 prime images look the same but sharper. When you use a Tamron or Sigma or Tokina, your images may look different (other color nuances).
     

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