Nikon 50mm f/1.4 G vs Nikon 85mm f/1.8 G

Nikon 50mm F/1.4 G Vs Nikon 85mm F/1.8 G

If you are having trouble deciding between the Nikon 50mm f/1.4 G and the Nikon 85mm f/1.8 G the read on for the full review and rundown. Which is best for you depends on what type of photography you do and how these lenses stack up for your needs. Let’s get to it.

Nikon 50mm f/1.4 G Reviewed

The Nikon 50mm f/1.4 G has a metal construction around the inner and outer lens barrel, with a plastic filter thread mount. The lens has a maximum aperture of f/1.4 and produces consistent sharp images with beautiful bokeh when shot wide open at f/1.4.

Who Is It For?

This lens is for the photographer looking for excellent low light performance and shallow depth of field (DOF) at a reasonable price. If you are looking to buy your first Nikon 50mm prime, or upgrade from a kit lens I would highly suggest the Nikon 50mm f/1.4 G. This is also an EXCELLENT second lens addition to anyone’s bag that already owns the Nikon 35mm f/1.8 G and the 18-55mm f/3.5-5.

What We Love About It

This lens is beautiful both to look at, but more importantly it is beautiful to use. This is a great general purpose lens and the 50mm focal length allows for an excellent balance of perspective, similar to how our eyes see the world. The lens produces consistent sharp images, and the price is right. It’s hard to ask for more from a workhorse prime lens.

Drawbacks

This lens does not come with a lens hood, which is a serious oversight in my opinion. There were cases where I felt I was risking damaging the lens by putting on the hood because it took such a firm tug to remove it once on. If you are planning to use this lens in low light conditions or shooting at f/1.4 you will really want to get an aftermarket lens hood.

Nikon 85mm f/1.8 G Reviewed

This lens has a metal construction around the inner and outer lens barrel, with a plastic filter thread mount. The lens has a maximum aperture of f/1.8 and produces consistent sharp images with beautiful bokeh when shot wide open at f/1.8.

Who Is It For?

The Nikon 85mm f/1.8 G is built for the photographer looking for excellent low light performance and shallow depth of field (DOF) at an affordable price. Its ultra fast f/1.8 aperture makes it a great choice for action and indoor sports photography.

What We Love About It

The Nikon 85mm f/1.8 G is my favorite of the Nikkor primes to shoot with in low light situations due to its fast f/1.8 maximum aperture. This lens has beautiful bokeh and is an amazing portrait lens as well. The build quality is superb on this lens. This is a fantastic second lens and a tremendous upgrade on the kit lens.

Drawbacks

This lens only has one focal length, 85mm. At this focal length you will be sacrificing some peripheral vision, especially in bright sunlight when shooting wide open at f/1.8.

In regards to low light performance, this lens may not be the best choice when shooting handheld. The lens doesn’t have a stabilizing system and will produce blur from camera shake, especially if you are shooting in low light conditions.

Bottom Line

The Nikon 50mm f/1.4 G is a workhorse lens, that is a great addition to any kit. This lens is not going to give you the same shallow depth of field as the Nikon 85mm f/1.8 G, but will be a better choice for shooting in low light situations. It’s hard to get both the low light performance and shallow DOF in the same package at this price point.