After more than 30 years, Nikon has changed the optical design of its 50mm f/1.8 lens. But how does the new model compare to its predecessors? Richard Sibley investigates
Improving on a classic design is often a difficult task, but it is one in which Nikon has succeeded. The new 50mm f/1.8G lens adds some significant features such as a quiet Sonic Wave Motor, curved aperture blades, better image contrast and reduced chromatic aberrations.
Curvilinear distortion may be slightly worse than with the previous design, but is still not very significant, especially if you don’t use a camera with a full-frame sensor.
There are few lenses that I would suggest photographers of a particular brand should own, but the Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.8G is one of them. With a street price of around £200, it is Nikon’s cheapest full-frame lens, with only the 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 DX kit lens costing less.
Regardless of your Nikon DSLR or photographic interests, the 50mm f/1.8G should find a place in most Nikon users’ kit bags, especially given its price and the quality of images it produces.