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50mm f/1.8 Lens for Nikon

Discussion in 'Lens Matters' started by NikonDebs, Feb 20, 2012.

  1. NikonDebs

    NikonDebs Member

    I'm looking to get a lens for low light shots. Have been looking into a 50mm f/1.8 as i'm on a tight budget. It's for a friends wedding in low light. No pressure as others are taking shots too I but I would like to get a least one nice shot. I'm a bit confused as to why some people say these don't work (??)on the D60 and some say they do. Any tips would be great. Very confused about the prices too. When I do a google search it tells me £68 but when i go through the links it's £100 upwards. Silly questions to those that know what they are doing I know but i'm a bit at sea here. Thank you in advance.
  2. NosamLuap

    NosamLuap Rebmem Roines

    Your D60 doesn't have an AF-screw mount if I recall correctly, so can only use auto-focus with AF-S lenses (i.e. lenses that have focussing motors in the lens, rather than relying on the body for AF). The newest 50mm f/1.8 AF-S from Nikon will work fine on your D60, but is more than £100 (more like £180, e.g. this from Warehouseexpress: http://www.warehouseexpress.com/buy-nikon-50mm-f1-8-g-af-s-lens/p1525420)

    The older AF version (http://www.warehouseexpress.com/buy-nikon-50mm-f1-8-d-af-lens/p12869) is ~£100, but whilst it will 'work' on your camera, it won't auto focus so you'll be limited to manual focus only. You can still get some great images with this lens and manual focus. It will mount, won't cause any harm, and will allow you to use auto exposure modes etc, it's just the AF that won't work.

    Without wanting to throw a spanner in your thought process, I often find that a 50mm is a little tight for a general lens. I picked up a 35mm f/1.8 AF-S (which will work and focus on your camera, and is ~£160 - http://www.warehouseexpress.com/buy-nikon-35mm-f1-8-g-af-s-dx-lens/p1030389 ) and I find that this now lives almost permanently on my camera. My 50mm rarely gets used since buying the 35mm.

    If you have time, I'd suggest using your 18-55 kit lens (assuming you have one?) at 50mm and at 35mm (tape the zoom in place! :) ) and see which focal length works best for your subjects and style of shooting.

    Hope that helps
  3. DaveM399

    DaveM399 Well-Known Member

    The 50mm lens that is around just over £100 new is the AF D model. This will work on a D60 but you have to focus manually. This is because this model of the lens does not have a focussing motor in it, and neither does the D60 body. The 50mm lens that will autofocus is the AF-S model (has the focus motor built in), but is considerably more expensive (about £170+ new).

    An alternative that might be worth considering is the is the 35mm AF-S lens (about £150 new) which would give a wider viewing angle, handier for group shots at a wedding than a 50mm lens.
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2012
  4. NikonDebs

    NikonDebs Member

    I think I'm in love with you, and so is my husband LOL that was sooo helpful. Sounds silly but ive been having a meltdown over this lens issue. I will try your suggestion before i empty the bank! I went for the 50mm purely because my pal is getting married by candle light and was advised the 50mm will be the best lens to get. Hmmm I shall play, thanks again!:D
  5. NikonDebs

    NikonDebs Member

    Thank you ever so much.I'm aiming for getting bride and groom shot only as i'm just there as a guest and dont want to miss the day but you're the second to suggest this so i'm playing tomorrow to see how I get on then in research mode. Thank you both ever so much. Sounds so simple the way you both explained it. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  6. NosamLuap

    NosamLuap Rebmem Roines

    Lol! Glad to help.

    The advice that the 50mm would be best is not based on the focal length necessarily - what's important for low light is the wide aperture (the "f/1.8" bit of the specification). This allows more light in for a given shutter speed, and hence is more suited to low light. So an f/1.8 of any focal length would be good for low light; an f/1.4 would be even better (and an f/0.95 would be great, but empty your mortgage!)

    so you have two things to consider - the light gathering capabilities (where a low "f" number is best) and the focal length, which is denoted by the "mm" - shorter focal lengths give a wider field of view, and longer focal lengths give a narrow field of view. You can get a feel for this with your kit lens by simply zooming it.

    But put simply, the 35mm f/1.8 or the 50mm f/1.8 are both great lenses, so it's really down to your preference of field of view - if you normally zoom your kit lens in to the max, then the 50mm may suit you...
  7. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    I would go with an f1.8 unless cost is irrelevant. The depth of field of an f1.4 used wide open is challenging unless you are trying to restrict depth of field to millimetres. The 35mm and 50mm will both be ideal but for different shots. For most people I think that for future use,after the wedding, the 35mm would be more often used. Both f1.8 lenses review very well and are sharp and almost free of distortion; they are as good as the f1.4 in every way except that half stop. Suss out the location and check the rules about flash beforehand.
    If there is to be a professional then also try to come to some agreement about not treading on their toes but also being there as a 'long stop'. A D60 shouldn't be too threatening; its not like turning up with a brace of D4s fitted with 24-70 and 70-200 big barrels.
    Also try for some informal shots and let the pro do the set pieces. Hopefully there will be child bridesmades and page boys being cute, naughty, or even nodding off; a bit like grand parents really, so get the grand parents as well.
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2012

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