Nikon AF 50mm f/1.8D Reviews

Jul 21st, 2006inventory

Price Paid
£25 USED

Product Understanding
Good

Time Owned
More than a year

I had one of these for over a year until it broke after falling onto a carpeted floor. The build is not the best, but then you can hardly complain at the price.

£120 new, buys you one of Nikon's sharpest lenses at f/8. At apertures wider ten f/2.8, the 50mm f/1.4 performs better, but then it costs three times as much.

The autofocus is a little clunky and inaccurate, which adds to the softness when using wide apertures.

Still, this lens represents excellent value for money.
Jul 29th, 2006jon

Price Paid
£50

Product Understanding
Good

Time Owned
More than a year

I have the AF-N version, with the improved AF rubber. I think it is metal barrel.

AF is loose, so get a manual focus one as well - they are so cheap second hand - if you need.

Front element is fairly recessed, so can get by without a lens hood.

Sharp as a razor.
Aug 11th, 2006Racinette

Price Paid
$175 CDN

Product Understanding
Good

Time Owned
More than a year

I've always loved the "normal" lens focal length for 35mm, but now that I'm using primarily digital SLRs, this lens makes a terrific portrait lens.

Used at full aperture, it does a great job of blowing out the background while keeping a fast shutter speed. (I'd recommend bracketing focus, as it's easy to produce an all-round blurry image if you're not careful.)

As for general-purpose photography, you can expect beautiful colour rendition at f4 to f11. If you're used to a zoom lens, you'll find the focal length limiting, but walking around with this one lens for one full day will give you an new eye for photography. For the price, you can't go wrong!
Nov 21st, 2006eddiefloyd

Price Paid
119

Product Understanding
Average

Time Owned
Less than a week

Im just getting use to this little gem. I'm new to the world of photography. I own a Nikon D50 and have a 18-55mm lens and a 75-300mm. Im sorry this wasn't the first one that I purchased. So far darn great. I suggest buy this lens in a hurry
Feb 22nd, 2007neruda

Price Paid
$120

Product Understanding
Good

Time Owned
Less than a year

pros : fast focusing, good color rendition, very sharp at f/4-5.6 and value for money for a primes lens.

cons : i find soft at wide open sharpness usually starts at f/2.8 and little bit noisy when focusing

highly recommend
Jul 3rd, 2007Lex

Price Paid
$95 USD

Product Understanding
Good

Time Owned
More than a year

Feels cheap, flimsy and plasticky (mine is the Made in China 50/1.8D AF). Don't drop it or knock it around. To be fair, maybe I shouldn't compare it with my "ancient" favorite, the 50mm f/2 AI Nikkor from the heavy metal era.

OTOH, the optical quality is top notch, making this one of the best values in the entire Nikkor lineup.

Some folks have reported disappointment with the optical performance, especially at around f/1.8-f/2.8. I suspect this is due to quality control variations and, possibly, some difficulties in accurately aligning optics in such an inexpensively made lens. Mine is sharp throughout.

It's a good choice for parents, amateurs and even pros who shoot indoor school sports in poorly illuminated gyms. The fast aperture facilitates faster shutter speeds. Autofocus is quick and accurate. While it's the old screwdriver type AF mechanism the rotating elements weigh little so AF adjustments produce very little perceptible jolt, unlike larger AF Nikkors like the 80-200/2.8.

Bad news? Some of the newer entry level Nikon dSLRs may not autofocus with AF Nikkors - it's AF-S or manual focus only. That limits your choice of a fast prime to something like the considerably more expensive Sigma 30mm f/1.4 HSM (equivalent to Nikon's AF-S).

Another nit: the front element rotates with focusing, requiring readjustment of a polarizer. No big deal. How often are we using a polarizer to photograph quickly moving subjects? Even if it's on snow or water you'd still need to adjust the polarizer as you pan with the action.

Overall a great buy in a cheap, fast prime.
Dec 25th, 2008Elingles

Price Paid
100€

Product Understanding
Good

Time Owned
More than a year

I'm sorry that I can't join the almost universal praise for the performance of this lens.

At wider apertures on a D200, I found the contrast between points in focus in the image and those in bokeh (or out of focus)to be high and sudden, leading a unnatural 3D effect. Moreover, I found the lens highly prone to ghosting (a nasty green spot close to the centre of the frame) when including lit street lights in a dusk or night image.

Perhaps my copy of the lens was a rogue.
Jul 11th, 2009jmtrevino

Price Paid
< $100 USD

Product Understanding
Good

Time Owned
More than a year

One of the sharpest and more refined lenses at any price. The going $115 price makes owning one a must if you have a compatible Nikon camera. Better still -optically- than its 1.4 sibling, albeit of much cheaper build. On par with a Leica Summicron 50/2 or a Voigtländer Nokton 1.5 --again optically. Build is on a vastly inferior league even tho my sample has served me well for several years now. The recessed front element makes using a shade superflous, another well received saving. My only complain is the harsh bokeh.

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