Pros:price, small size, low weight, useful lens
Cons:watch for that shallow depth of field at wide apertures!
The Bottom Line: At that price, you'd be crazy not to try this out!
Considered by many film photographers to be an essential tool in any camera bag, 50mm lenses have always seemed to have a good reputation and the Nikon 50mm 1.8D AF is a fine addition to that line up.
Recommend this product?
In the world of digital, the old style 50mm which always was cited at giving an angle closer to what we actually see through our eyes has changed slightly. Unless youre toting a full-frame model, most digitals have a crop factor, which basically multiplies the focal length of your lenses. With a 50mm, its closer to 70-80mm depending on your camera. With this added length it makes it a fairly tight portrait camera, unless youre prepared to do the photographers shuffle and move to get the framing right.
With a lightweight plastic construction and relatively low profile when its clicked into place on a Nikon, this is a very unassuming lens and happily snuggles into any nook or cranny in your photo bag or pocket. In a world of heavy and long lenses, its something you can almost forget about and leave it as a bonus tool in your kit for when the time is right.
It also makes for a good candid lens its short and stubby length unlike to scare a subject as much as a whopping great 300mm poked in their face.
And with the lightness comes agility. Its a breath of fresh air to spend a day shooting with such a little lens on your camera, rather than a hulking zoom.
Auto focus is speedy, but can be a bit harsh and manual focus, as stated in previous reviews, is a little on the stiff side.
Image quality is generally extremely sharp. Im no expert or pixel peeper, and while pros making their living from photography might spot some slight issues, Ive never seen an image with any obvious image problems
As a relatively fast 1.8 lens the 50mm is great for those who like making the most of natural light and leaving the flash switched off as long as possible. It certainly seems to suck the light in once its opened up and lets you get away with hand held pictures in lower light than youll be used to. However, it does take a while to get used to the incredibly shallow depth of field and you need to be twice as aware of where your focus point is than normal its all to easy to have a perfectly sharp nose and extremely out of focus eyes!
Bokeh (the blurred background in some pictures with a shallow depth of field) is nicely pleasing and can be used to great artistic effect once you get a handle on the lens performance.
Build quality is the usual Nikon standard it may be plastic, but it feels solid and comes with a metal mount.
And the best thing for such a great little lens it can be found for less than 100 of your English pounds, or about the same in dollars
so why isnt it already in your bag?!