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Old Feb 17, 2010, 1:01 AM   #1
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Default Something to go with a 70-300?

I've been using a manual focus 24-48mm on my D90.
I wanna get a mediumish AF lens, since MF is too slow and I also need to do available light pics. I have the 70-300mm VR right now.


I don't know what to choose!
18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-S - $110 (not fast but I can get another lens too)
35mm f/1.8 AF-S - $199
50mm f/1.8 AF-D - $130
50mm f/1.4 AF-D - $320
50mm f/1.4 AF-S - $440

Suggestions? (around $300 max)
Mainly using a D90, but I have some film SLRs too. However, FX lenses aren't a priority.

How much of a difference is f/1.8 to f/1.4? Is it noticeable?
What about the bokeh?
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Old Feb 17, 2010, 3:37 AM   #2
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I've been very pleased with the Tamrom 17-50mm f/2.8 for shooting with available light. It's more than $300, but it's about the same as the 50mm f/1.4 AF-S you listed. And Sigma has an 18-50/2.8 that's also very good. Unfortunately, the stabilized version of the Tamron, doesn't appear to be as good, but except for the kit lens, it doesn't seem that you're worried about stabilization.

In addition to those, there's also the Sigma 18-55/2.8-4.5 OS that's stabilized and it's 2/3 stop faster than the kit lens.

And the difference between f/1.4 and f/1.8 is also 2/3 stop. That's the difference between ISO 200 and ISO 320.

A large aperture lens will also severely limit your depth of field. If that's what you're after, those lenses will do it for you, but if that's not something you're prepared for, you'll have to pay a lot more attention to focus. You might want to get the 50/1.8 just to get the hang of it.
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Old Feb 17, 2010, 6:57 AM   #3
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im kind of in the same boat as you and i think ill be getting the 35mm f/1.8 AF-S simply because i dont think the 50mm is wide enough on the D90 when you consider it will be more like a 75mm
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Old Feb 17, 2010, 6:11 PM   #4
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just picked up my nikkor 85mm 1.8

in my experinces, 1.8's are usulay crisper, but thats just me...

and you dont need an af-s with a d90, they have internal motors
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Old Feb 18, 2010, 6:48 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NothingRare View Post
I've been using a manual focus 24-48mm on my D90.
I wanna get a mediumish AF lens, since MF is too slow and I also need to do available light pics. I have the 70-300mm VR right now.


I don't know what to choose!
18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-S - $110 (not fast but I can get another lens too)
35mm f/1.8 AF-S - $199
50mm f/1.8 AF-D - $130
50mm f/1.4 AF-D - $320
50mm f/1.4 AF-S - $440

Suggestions? (around $300 max)
Mainly using a D90, but I have some film SLRs too. However, FX lenses aren't a priority.

How much of a difference is f/1.8 to f/1.4? Is it noticeable?
What about the bokeh?
It depends of what you want to shoot. The 18-55 is a fantastic value, although I would get the newer VR version, rather than the non VR. It's usually a good idea to get the kit lens when buying a camera, as they are solid performers and are basically given away with the camera body. Then after using the kit lens for a while it's easy to determine what the next lens purchase should be. Since you've got the tele already in the bag, I'd say the kit lens is a no brainer. While primes are sharp, and fast (if you need it), I find them way to limiting and inconvenient to use, and I miss too many shots switching lenses or not having the right lens on. This is especially true indoors. I have a 50 f1.8 and can't remember the last time I used it.

In terms of quality, f1.4 are typically more expensive, and unless you absolutely need the extra speed, I'd save the money and get the 1.8 version. With today's DSLR's having great high ISO performance, fast primes aren't a necessity (unless they fit your shooting style!)

Last edited by rjseeney; Feb 18, 2010 at 6:50 AM.
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Old Feb 22, 2010, 2:42 AM   #6
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I need light. Just don't know how much! I listed the 1.4 because I never had enough light with my old camera (see aperture graph).

I don't know if I need f/1.4 vs 1.8...No actually what I might be able to do is simulate the difference?
What would f/2.6 be after a 66% reduction in light?


Also I naturally tend to "stick" to around 24mm, 35mm, 50mm and 85mm, which would be a wide zoom, the 35mm, and 50mm lenses on d90 DX.
See graphs
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Old Feb 22, 2010, 5:50 AM   #7
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There are no zooms that have apertures larger than f/2.8, so if you want something larger, then you need primes. And, btw, the aperture doesn't change with the angle of view (the size of the image sensor), so there's no "66% reduction in light".

If you want a zoom, the one that immediately comes to mind is the Sigma 17-70. It covers the zoom range you're talking about and it's fast (f/2.8-4.5 for the unstabilized version, f/2.8-4.0 for the stabilized version.) Alternatively, there's Sigma's and Tamron's 17-50/2.8 (both stabilized and not.) Beyond that, all there is are primes.

It's also possible, btw, that your graphs just show that you do a lot of shooting at (the 35mm equivalent of) 24mm, and that just happens to be where the aperture can open up to f/2.6. Therefore, you may not need a really large aperture, just a short focal length. In which case, the Sigma 17-70 might suit you well.
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Old Mar 7, 2010, 8:41 AM   #8
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With the budget you have for "available light pics" I think you have to ask how often will you use it only for available light. The vast amount of time I use f2.8 or less is really for DOF control not just for getting faster shutter speeds. So are the available light pics just so you don't bother others or is it that the on camera flash looks like on camera flash? Your graph shows me that you shoot as wide as you can most of the time, that's what I find with mine as well. Especially inside the house. I think the 18-55 would be a great addition and spend the extra on an SB-600 (D90 has a commander mode) and learn to use it off camera by taking the strobist 101 course (Free on-line). Any of the less expensive 18-?? will fill the bill. Then I bet your graph will have data heaped up at the ends of that lens like you see now.
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Old Mar 8, 2010, 2:16 PM   #9
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Why not consider the 18-55 VR? It's dirt cheap and allows you to shoot in low light. Yes, it does not freeze your subject, but for stills it will be great!

I've had the 18-70 (focus issues), the 18-135 (had CA issues), and the 18-55 GII (no issues!).
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Old Mar 11, 2010, 8:24 PM   #10
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I would suggest a used 18-70 Nikkor. My copy is pretty sharp, it has a larger aperture than the other Nikon 18-whatever lenses (f/3.5-4.5 vs f/3.5-5.6), you can usually find them around 200 bucks, and you will share a filter size with your 70-300. Granted, no VR, but otherwise it's a great lens.
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