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  1. #1
    irene67 is offline I'm new here!
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    Default 50 f/1.8 series E for D40

    I have a D40 and one lens that I really am itching to get is the nifty fifty.

    I know that this lens will not autofocus on the D40, which is OK. It would be good for me to get better at MF anyway.

    I know the lens is inexpensive - a little over $100. But I also see the older version, Series E, even cheaper on ebay - about $50. From what I can see, the only difference is that the new version will autofocus on some cameras (but not mine) while the series E is purely a MF lens.

    Is there anything else I should know? I guess if I was going to upgrade my camera in the near future and wanted the AF capability, it may be better to get the newer one, but I just got my D40 so that isn't going to happen anytime soon.

    Should I just go ahead with the series E and save some $$$ or is there some other reason that the newer version would be preferable?

    Thanks in advance!!!!
    Irene
    Nikon D80, Nikkor 35 f/2.0, 50 f/1.8 and 55 - 200 VR
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  2. #2
    topslakr is offline dPS Forum Member
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    I bought the AF version when I was shooting with my D40. I now use that lens with both my D300 and my manual focus FE. When I put it on the D300 I do love the fact that is will auto focus. It's really great for low light where I still struggle with focusing by hand.

    The fact of the matter is 50mm lenses have not changed in a long time. Features are added, like auto-focus, but the actual glass has changed very little if at all. If you buy the older MF lens for ~$50 you can still sell it for ~$50 when/if you upgrade your camera to something that will focus it. I would not be too surprised to see Nikon begin releasing AFS versions of their primes this year either... I can hope can't I?

    Robert

    For frame of reference I'm shooting with:
    Nikon N80, Nikon FE, Nikon D300, Nikon D40, 18-55mm kit Lens, Nikon 70-300mm VR, Nikon 50mm F/1.8, Nikon 24-120mm VR, Nikon 85mm f/1.8, Nikon SB-400 Flash, Nikon SB-600

  3. #3
    irene67 is offline I'm new here!
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    Thanks. I actually posted the same question on a Flickr group and got one response that I absolutely should NOT buy an older version of this lens. But I don't know why. To me, there really doesn't seem to be much reason why I shouldn't buy an older one.
    Nikon D80, Nikkor 35 f/2.0, 50 f/1.8 and 55 - 200 VR
    Flickr

  4. #4
    kirbinster's Avatar
    kirbinster is offline Always carry your camera
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    While others like the 50 on the D40 I would NOT buy it for that camera. I have one and hated to use it on the D40 due to it not being able to autofocus and it does not have focusing aides the way my old lenses did in the pre-autofocus days. I love the lens on my D80 or my D300 but never use it on the D40. I think someone (either Nikon or Sigma) just came out with either a 50mm or 60mm that will autofocus on the D40 - that would be a better purchase.
    Nikon D800e, D300, D5000, NIKON GLASS 85mm F/1.8 D, 105mm f/2.8 Micro AF-S VR, 70-200 AF-S VR f/2.8, 28-300 AF-S VRII,10.5mm Fisheye, 24-70 AF-S f/2.8, TC-20E III AF-S, Sigma 12-24 HSM, Sigma 30mm f/1.4 HSM, Sigma 150-500 OS, 2 SB-600 Speedlights, SB-900 speedlight, 4 YN-622N transceivers, Manfrotto 190MF3 tripod & 322RC2 ball grip head. - NJ, USA
    Flickr Photobucket
    Ok to edit and repost my shots on DPS forums

  5. #5
    topslakr is offline dPS Forum Member
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    Sigma does make a 30mm lens that will AF on the D40. 30mm is about equivilent to what a 50mm lens looks like on a film or full frame camera.

    Robert

    For frame of reference I'm shooting with:
    Nikon N80, Nikon FE, Nikon D300, Nikon D40, 18-55mm kit Lens, Nikon 70-300mm VR, Nikon 50mm F/1.8, Nikon 24-120mm VR, Nikon 85mm f/1.8, Nikon SB-400 Flash, Nikon SB-600

  6. #6
    jdepould's Avatar
    jdepould is offline Critique Moderator
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    I'm pretty sure you lose metering on the E with a D40, while you still have metering on the D-type. Sigma is also coming out with an HSM 50 that will AF, although I think it's a f/2.8.
    JamieDePould.com + OneYearPhoto.com
    Nikon D300, D700, Sony NEX5n
    Zeiss 2/25; 1.4/50; 1.4/85

    Please read the rules before posting a critique thread. Rules here.

  7. #7
    neonfish3's Avatar
    neonfish3 is offline dPS Forum Member
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    I have a 50mm f1.8 E series that I got for $35 on Craigs list and I love it! I'm using a D50. It has taught me alot about using manual exposure and focus.
    --------------
    Steve T.
    The happiest people don't necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the best of everything they have.
    My Flickr Photostream.

  8. #8
    JMS
    JMS is offline I'm new here!
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdepould View Post
    I'm pretty sure you lose metering on the E with a D40, while you still have metering on the D-type.
    Yes, you won't be able to use your D40 in aperture or shutter priority modes since it won't be able to determine exposure with that lens. I have several older lenses for my D50 (which doesn't meter with them either) and they work great.

    If you have a light meter you use regularly, or you don't mind chimping a bit, then get it. The Series E lenses are supposed to have been a very good value for the money.

  9. #9
    wulf's Avatar
    wulf is offline Ninja Moderator
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    I love my E Series 50mm. You will have to use it in manual mode and there is no metering so you need to guess some suitable settings and then tweak depending on the results (as well as, obviously, no auto focus) but I have found that to be a useful tool for learning my camera better.

    Plenty of examples on my Flickr account.

    Wulf
    Wulf Forrester-Barker << Sites: blog / flickr >>
    Gear: Nikon D40, Nikon AFS 18-55mm f/3.5 - 5.6G, Nikon Series E 50mm f/1.8, Nikon AF 70-300mm f/4-5.6G, Vivitar 90mm f/2.5 macro, Raynox DCR-250, Lensbaby 2.0k, SB600

  10. #10
    ving is offline dPS Forum Member
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    just buy it!
    if you can got an old E series for $50 get it cause thats cheap as

    i have several Ai and earlier lenses the i use on my d40 and they are so much fun. there is no metering so its manual mode only but you get used to that and after a while it becomes second nature (or close to it). and while focus is manual, in the viewfinder at the bottow there is a green dot that shows when you are focused. it flickers when you are close and becomes constant when focus is reached. practice makes perfect. I do all my macro on completely manual gear and i also use a asahi 50mm f/1.4 with an m42 to f-mount adapter.

    heres a couple of shots both completely manual.
    first is my cat logan taken with the asahi 50mm, the second and third (niether cropped) taken with a nikkor 55mm f3.5 micro and 3x TC.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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