Top positive review
4 people found this helpful
The second-best fast prime lens for Nikon and unbeatable value
on 20 June 2016
The Nikkor 50mm 1.8 (D version) has a very specific role in my arsenal of expensive glass (though this is one of the best value-for-money lens you can buy). I recommend this to my students shooting in low light situations such as small concerts, even weddings.
It is bettered only by the 1.4 version Nikon AF NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4D Lens or here for the G version Nikon 50mm F1.4G AF-S Nikkor Lens.
Naturally, F1.4 gives you a LOT of light but seriously narrows your depth-of-field (the area which will be sharp in the picture). The sweet spot for sharpness is between F2.8 and F4 as is the case with most prime lenses. This 1.8 versiongives you a little more depth and that sharpness sweet spot moves up beyond F4 and towards the F5.6. It is thus a little more forgiving but requires a little more time for the perfect exposure.
With such a large aperture this is not really suitable for shooting into very bright light sources unless you like the scattered light effect this produces.
I use mine in the studio but with side lighting or diffuse light behind me.
Close-up shots at full aperture are amazingly creamy, if you love bokeh then this class of lens is for you. Catching the eyes of your subject (tripod recommended) renders everything else, nose, hair, (freckles, spots!) into a wonderful blur and people will think you've PhotoShopped the hell out of an unaltered image.