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  1. #1
    TTh0r is offline I'm new here!
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    Default 50mm f1.4 versus f1.8

    I am an avid amateur in photography; I currently have a Nikon D60 (considering upgrading in the coming years), and the standard 18-55mm VR AF-S lens and 55-200mm AF-S lens.

    I currently want to get a prime lens; I've decided on a 50mm because its a decent distance, and is a good range for things like portrait photography. However, now I am having a hard time deciding between whether I want to spend $220 on an f1.8 lens or go the extra mile and spend $485 on the f1.4 lens. the ability to reduce the depth of field so far seems like it would super useful, and plus the faster shutter speed would be really nice. But is the f1.4 worth the extra $260 over the f1.8?
    If I was looking at AF lenses instead of AF-S, I feel like I would easily be able to justify spending $365 on the 50mm f1.4 AF lens, but $485 seems like so much, I feel conflicted.
    Is it worth the extra price to go for the f1.4 now, or will the f1.8 do perfectly well?

    (if someone has a link to comparative photos using f1.8 aperture versus f1.4, that would also be helpful)
    Last edited by TTh0r; 04-16-2012 at 06:26 PM.

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    Hill Country Hack's Avatar
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    Welcome to DPS. You have asked a frequently asked question. I did a quick Google search of "50mm f1.8 vs f1.4 digital photography school" and here is one of the related links. 50mm f1.8 vs. 50mm f1.4 I suggest you read through it and the others. If you still have questions or want to bounce ideas around, please feel free.

    I will tell you I did obtain a Canon 50mm f1.8 without image stabalization and hve not regretted it for a second. It came down to weather I wanted to spend the extra $ for little return. I didn't, so I went with the 1.8. There is also a 50mm challenge thread here. Check it out to see what this little beauty can do if used properly.
    Last edited by Hill Country Hack; 04-16-2012 at 07:09 PM.

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    The LoKW is offline dPS Forum Member
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    I'm with HCH, I picked up the 1.4 50mm and absolutely love it. Extremely versatile and well built, it delivers tack sharp images. Very well built, I love this lens and whichever way you decide to go am sure you'll get a lot of use out of it.

  4. #4
    KevRev123 is offline Bacon and Bubbles
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    Quote Originally Posted by TTh0r View Post
    I am an avid amateur in photography; I currently have a Nikon D60 (considering upgrading in the coming years), and the standard 18-55mm VR AF-S lens and 55-200mm AF-S lens.

    I currently want to get a prime lens; I've decided on a 50mm because its a decent distance, and is a good range for things like portrait photography. However, now I am having a hard time deciding between whether I want to spend $220 on an f1.8 lens or go the extra mile and spend $485 on the f1.4 lens. the ability to reduce the depth of field so far seems like it would super useful, and plus the faster shutter speed would be really nice. But is the f1.4 worth the extra $260 over the f1.8?
    If I was looking at AF lenses instead of AF-S, I feel like I would easily be able to justify spending $365 on the 50mm f1.4 AF lens, but $485 seems like so much, I feel conflicted.
    Is it worth the extra price to go for the f1.4 now, or will the f1.8 do perfectly well?

    (if someone has a link to comparative photos using f1.8 aperture versus f1.4, that would also be helpful)
    Having owned one or the other at some point in time I'd say the difference between f/1.4 and f/1.8 is almost negligible. The only real reason to get f/1.4 is because it will probably be sharper when you stop down or if you absolutely need the crazy isolation. On a cropped camera, like the D60 you won't really get the crazy depth of field you would on a full frame camera.

    Now I started with a D60 and I loved that camera very much but it is an entry level body meaning you don't get an autofocus screw. So if you're willing to buy the 50mm AF-D which will only work in manual focus, you might as well just save even more money and get a Nikon Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 (AI) lens which is strictly manual focus and the current 50mm lens I use on my D7000. It's a classic old lenses, built like a tank and can be had for $75-$100. With the D60 you have an option in the menu for electronic range finder which makes manual focus SUPER EASY!
    My Website: OMGSquirrel | Flickr | Gear: D3, Df, Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 UMC AE IF-ED, AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.4G, AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G, AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED, SB-700, SB-600, Manfrotto 055CXPRO3, Induro PHQ1

  5. #5
    OsmosisStudios's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevRev123 View Post
    Having owned one or the other at some point in time I'd say the difference between f/1.4 and f/1.8 is almost negligible. The only real reason to get f/1.4 is because it will probably be sharper when you stop down or if you absolutely need the crazy isolation. On a cropped camera, like the D60 you won't really get the crazy depth of field you would on a full frame camera.
    Actually at anything smaller than f/4, the f/1.8G and f/1.4G are pretty much the same. The trick is wide open (the f/2-f/2.8 range) where the f/1.4 is slightly better. Unless you need to shoot at f/2 all the time, save your money and get the f/1.8
    Last edited by OsmosisStudios; 04-20-2012 at 11:39 AM.
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    Id prob pick up a 1.8G, and save the rest for a flash or future upgrade on a body. I think better ISO performance in a camera will benefit you more than the 1.8G vs 1.4G decision.
    Nikon D700, D90 - Tokina 17-35mm f4 - Tamron 28-75mm 2.8, Nikon 35mm 2D, 50mm 1.8G, 60mm 2.8D micro, 85mm 1.8, 80-200mm 2.8D - SB900, Metz 58 AF-2 - yn622n transceivers/tx
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  7. #7
    KevRev123 is offline Bacon and Bubbles
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    Quote Originally Posted by OsmosisStudios View Post
    Actually at anything smaller than f/4, the f/1.8G and f/1.4G are pretty much the same. The trick is wide open (the f/2-f/2.8 range) where the f/1.4 is considerably better. Unless you need to shoot at f/2 all the time, save your money and get the f/1.8
    This is basically what I said.
    My Website: OMGSquirrel | Flickr | Gear: D3, Df, Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 UMC AE IF-ED, AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.4G, AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G, AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED, SB-700, SB-600, Manfrotto 055CXPRO3, Induro PHQ1

  8. #8
    OsmosisStudios's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevRev123 View Post
    This is basically what I said.
    You said the opposite:

    Quote Originally Posted by KevRev123 View Post
    The only real reason to get f/1.4 is because it will probably be sharper when you stop down or if you absolutely need the crazy isolation.
    Stopping down (using small apertures, between f/4 and f/22), you won't see much of a difference; you claim the opposite. The 1.4 is sharper wide open, but not stopped down.

    The "crazy isolation" between 1.8 and 1.4 is negligible.
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  9. #9
    TTh0r is offline I'm new here!
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    Thanks for all the help! I think I am going to save the money and get the 50mm f1.8 lens~

  10. #10
    OsmosisStudios's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccting View Post
    Hmm..

    I am using 50mm f/1.8G. But my main wedding photographer told me it is better to get f/1.4. But Ken tells that it is consumer lens that can't last long.
    Ken? Ken ROCKWELL? Dont listen to a word he says.

    Just looking at MTF charts (which I KNOW you love).
    Left is 50/1.8, right is 50/1.4, both AF-S G



    Follow the lines: The 50/1.8G is actually optically superior when stopped down. It also has faster autofocus. The only advantage is that 2/3 stop. It used to be that with the 1.8D and the 1.4G there was a huge optical difference, but when they switched from AF-D to AF-S, they changed the optics.

    Quote Originally Posted by ccting View Post
    So.. i will get 50mm f/1.2 AFS professional lens (coming soon within these 5 years) if i do professional work.
    There are patents for 50/1.2 AF-S lenses, but no concrete rumors. Did you hear this from your "inside contact" that also confirmed the 85/1.4 VR?

    Quote Originally Posted by ccting View Post
    I am not sure which is shaper @ f/2. Based on historical data, f/1.4 lens should be sharper @ f/2 if compared to f/1.8 lens. Then, if you are shooting wedding, f/2 is a common aperture in my country, so I will go for f/1.4 lens. But if you shoot kids or baby, you may want f/1.8 lens as it autofocus faster
    There's no way for me to show you visually because DPReview doesnt have a review on the 1.8G yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by ccting View Post
    f/1.4-->f/1.8 is 2/3 stops. That gives great difference for me..No one knows you may need f/1.6 or f/1.4 one day, where you never ever able to shoot using f/1.8 lens.
    The possibility of needing 2/3EV isn't enough to spend $200 to someone who isn't going to be using it professionally. That's almost negligible.

    Quote Originally Posted by ccting View Post
    One thing i dislike f/1.8 lens is, it seems to suck in dust when autofocus.. no weather seal... etc. I have problem when take out from my car or take into my car when the air-con is on.
    All lenses that move during focus will bring air into the lens. Most zooms do too. Hell, the 24-70 f/2.8 is a pump zoom: it'll bring air into the lens when you zoom. The issue with air conditioning will happen to any lens: thats condensation and is because you're taking it from a warm/humid environment into a cold/dry environment. Nothing to do with the lens, everything to do with your ineptitude.

    Quote Originally Posted by ccting View Post
    LOL>>..for me, i will not buy both of the lenses
    ;D
    But you said you already had the 50/1.8G.
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