Nikkor 50mm D vs. Nikkor 50mm G

notjustamomanotjustamoma Posts: 7Member
edited November 2013 in Nikon Lenses
A while back I purchased a Nikkor 50mm D lens for my Nikon D7000 by mistake instead of the 50mm G that was recommended. At that time, the D was more expensive and I thought it must be a better lens so I kept it, but everything I see on the net recommends the G......would someone be so kind as to explain the difference to me? Thanks.

Comments

  • shawninoshawnino Posts: 453Member
    Did you buy an f/1.4 lens or an f/1.8 lens?
    Very rough costs:
    1.4 G: $400+
    1.4D: $300+
    1.8G: $200+
    1.8D: $120

    The good news: all four lenses, in my opinion, are pretty good value.

    The 1.4 lenses are more expensive because they can open their apertures a little wider to get extra light in low-light situations.

    The G-lenses are a more modern design, and arguably out-perform their D-counterparts by a little bit, but I think the vast majority of the time one will not notice. I've owned my 1.4D "forever" and I love doing street photography with it. On your D7000 any of these 50mm will work quite well as a standard portrait lens. As long as you haven't paid massively over the odds (and I doubt you have), whatever you bought will be great!
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,006Member
    The 50mm F1.8G is all you need in that range. Unless you really need to shoot at 1.4. The 58mm F1.4G is a rich mans toy. Nice lens I'm sure, but is it really worth $1400 more than the 50mm f1.8G? Again, unless you need 1.4, most likely not. Same goes for any of the fast primes, really.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,006Member
    I haven't noticed much choppiness, and it's a lot better than the 1.8D or AI versions. Sure it would be nice if it had 9 aperture blades, but I'd rather save a few hundred bucks than get the 50mm 1.4G.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,006Member
    I should have phrased that better, I already have the 1.8G. I have no need for any of 1.4 versions at this point.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • heartyfisherheartyfisher Posts: 3,172Member
    edited November 2013
    I did some tests with the 1.4 AIS, 1.8D 1.4d 1.4 G .. have not tried the 1.8G yet. The bokeh was worst on the 1.8D. The 1.4G and 1.4AIS was the best in my opinion. My fav was the old 1.4AIS because of the slightly warm colours and a nice feel to the background blur. PitchBlack I am keen to hear your thoughts on the 1.8G in terms of bokeh and colour .. I have heard that its "better" than the 1.4G in many ways esp sharpness. I am thinking of finally upgrading that 1.4AIS and the 1.8G is top on the list of options. The 58 1.4 is on the list too but unlikely to be worth the money for me as I don't shoot at 50mm much at all.
    Post edited by heartyfisher on
    Moments of Light - D610 D7K S5pro 70-200f4 18-200 150f2.8 12-24 18-70 35-70f2.8 : C&C very welcome!
    Being a photographer is a lot like being a Christian: Some people look at you funny but do not see the amazing beauty all around them - heartyfisher.

  • WestEndBoyWestEndBoy Posts: 1,456Member
    edited November 2013
    For what it is worth, I have both the 50mm 1.4G and the 85mm 1.4G. I recognize that it is an unfair comparison given the focal length difference.

    I love the 50mm focal length and shoot it more than everything else combined. I find the images quite pleasing for street photography and other applications where the composition makes the shot and the moments are fleeting. But when I want a truly beautiful image that is both sharp with wonderful bokeh and have a few moments, I put on the 85mm 1.4G and step back or even the 135 DC 2.0 and step further back. Sure they are three or four times the price, but the difference is apparent.

    That said, a more direct comparison is between my 50mm 1.4G and my 50mm 1.2MF. I shoot each about equally. There are some differences. The MF is sharper at F2. The 1.4G actually has pretty nice bokeh. The 1.2MF's bokeh is so so. Distortion is similar on both and quite bad frankly, but I leave my "auto distortion control" on and if there is anything left, I have not noticed it because I have not shot too many brick walls or test charts.

    So I will side with Heartyfisher over Pitchblack on this point, there are differences that even a non-professional like me (I am a very avid amateur) can detect. However, to Pitchblack's point, for the 99 percenters, he is essentially correct. It is us 1 percenters that will notice the difference.
    Post edited by WestEndBoy on
  • notjustamomanotjustamoma Posts: 7Member
    I actually have the Nikkor 1.4 D; what does the "D" stand for and the

















    I have the Nikkor 1.4D; what does "D" & "G" stand for? Thanks for all the comments.
  • CorrelliCorrelli Posts: 135Member
    edited November 2013
    "D" lenses are AF lenses that transmit a distance information to the camera that can be used for stuff like flash photography. "G" lenses are AF lenses that don't have an aperture ring anymore - the aperture is controlled electronically from the camera.

    If you have older cameras (e.g. film cameras) you might need the D lenses as you need to set the aperture manually on the lens, but for most modern cameras G lenses are fine.

    You might also have a look at the nikon knowlegdebase at Nikon USA. There is a glossary of terms used by Nikon.
    Post edited by Correlli on
  • shawninoshawnino Posts: 453Member
    @notjustamoma: a couple first steps for you:

    A-mode stands for "aperture mode"-- you control the size of the opening that the light comes in, the camera's computer controls the other settings.

    1) Indoors, when it's a bit dark, and when it starts to get a little dark outdoors, put the camera in A-mode and use the dial on the right side of the camera to set aperture on the 1.4D to about f/2.0. Compare how much brighter your image is to anything taken with the kit-lens. Compare how much more quickly the autofocus works on your 1.4D than on the kit lens (if the kit lens autofocuses at all).

    2) Putting the camera in A-mode again, on a bright day, take two portraits of the same person at the same time with the same lens: your 50 f/1.4D.
    1) Take one portrait at f/2.
    2) Take the second one at f/11.
    You should see that in the f/11 photo just about everything in the frame is in focus. On the f/2 photo, the background should be nice and creamy, while the portrait subject is in focus. Which portrait is "better" is up to you; this exercise is just designed to show you the type of creative control the 1.4D lens (and other lenses that can operate near f/2) can offer you.



  • SportsSports Posts: 365Member
    The old 50/1.4D autofocuses significantly faster than the newer 50/1.4G. At least on a D300, and most likely also on D700, D800, D3, D4. I can't say if it's the case on D7000. (The D won't autofocus on the low-end DSLRs.)
    I read somewhere that the G has much better weather sealing.
    D300, J1
    Sigma 70-200/2.8, 105/2.8
    Nikon 50/1.4G, 18-200, 80-400G
    1 10-30, 30-110
  • TaoTeJaredTaoTeJared Posts: 1,306Member
    edited November 2013
    I did some tests with the 1.4 AIS, 1.8D 1.4d 1.4 G .. have not tried the 1.8G yet. The bokeh was worst on the 1.8D. The 1.4G and 1.4AIS was the best in my opinion. My fav was the old 1.4AIS because of the slightly warm colours and a nice feel to the background blur. PitchBlack I am keen to hear your thoughts on the 1.8G in terms of bokeh and colour .. I have heard that its "better" than the 1.4G in many ways esp sharpness. I am thinking of finally upgrading that 1.4AIS and the 1.8G is top on the list of options. The 58 1.4 is on the list too but unlikely to be worth the money for me as I don't shoot at 50mm much at all.
    Add about 3 more MF Nikkor 50s and 2 DX 50s (30mm & 35) to that list and I found about the same. I kind of think the older Ais lenses have so much more CAs which actually helps the bokeh. ;) I can certainly tell they resolve less as well.
    The old 50/1.4D autofocuses significantly faster than the newer 50/1.4G. At least on a D300, and most likely also on D700, D800, D3, D4. I can't say if it's the case on D7000. (The D won't autofocus on the low-end DSLRs.)
    I read somewhere that the G has much better weather sealing.
    My D focused a bit faster but also missed focus much more than my 1.4G lens. CAs are much better on the G than D though.
    Considering the D basically has no weather sealing, the G is better IF you put a front filter on it.

    @notjustamoma The difference between the D & G in image quality isn't much, but I do notice it. I also use a 50mm a lot and own 8 different 50mm and equivalents. Unless you see something wrong with the D, you shouldn't feel the need to upgrade. If you did go to a lower model of camera (5xxx or 3xxx) the D will not focus on those bodies as it needs the camera's drive motor to focus.

    I have had the 1.4G for years and it is always with me. I tried the 1.8G but for what others see as good points, I saw as drawbacks. The 1.8G is technically better but I prefer the 1.4G's rendering of the image better. It is slightly softer in the bokeh and that is what I want. That said, the 1.8G is a hell of a good lens for a very good price. Unless you are a 50mm shooter, I would suggest that one. Me, I'm going to get the 58mm. And then I will have 9 50's in all, to choose from. ;) (I really need to get rid of a few.)
    Post edited by TaoTeJared on
    D800, D300, D50(ir converted), FujiX100, Canon G11, Olympus TG2. Nikon lenses - 24mm 2.8, 35mm 1.8, (5 in all)50mm, 60mm, 85mm 1.8, 105vr, 105 f2.5, 180mm 2.8, 70-200vr1, 24-120vr f4. Tokina 12-24mm, 16-28mm, 28-70mm (angenieux design), 300mm f2.8. Sigma 15mm fisheye. Voigtlander R2 (olive) & R2a, Voigt 35mm 2.5, Zeiss 50mm f/2, Leica 90mm f/4. I know I missed something...
  • roombarobotroombarobot Posts: 201Member

    If you are comparing the two f/1.8 lenses, there are a lot of videos and sites comparing the two. I watched several and came to a conclusion that the bokeh on the 1.8G was smoother than the 1.8D, so I bought the G. Since it would be one of my widest lenses, I wanted the better bokeh.

    You can come to your own conclusion there. Best of luck!

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