35mm, 50mm and 85mm primes

Started Dec 15, 2009 | Discussions thread
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DRode
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35mm, 50mm and 85mm primes
Dec 15, 2009

I broke down and ordered the 35mm f/1.8 today even though I have a 50mm and an 85mm prime plus the 18-105 VR that covers 35mm.

I like the 18-105 but it's not ideal for shooting in low light. The 50mm is great and I really like it for shooting portraits. However, it's a bit long to shoot gatherings in smaller rooms. For a long time, I disregarded the 35mm because I thought it was too close to the 50mm and would get much use. I considered getting a 24mm or 28mm instead. For my uses I don't really need a fast lens in that range. Something like the Sigma 10-20 or one of the Nikon ultra wide zooms makes better sense.

The more thought I gave it, the more I realized that I would end up using the 35mm, 50mm and 85mm pretty regularly. The one area where the 35mm really stood out is it's sharpness between f/1.8 and f/2.8. It is sharper a full stop wider than my 50mm. With the great high ISO performance of my D90, I can shoot at f/2.0 and ISO 800 day in and day out with great results. In a pinch, I can go wide open and ISO 1200-1600 and darn near shoot sports by moonlight At $200, it's too useful not t have.

I find that, even in good light, I prefer to have a prime lens if I can. If I don't know what to expect, I'll mount up my 18-105 otherwise, I reach for a prime lens.

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