50mm or 85mm on DX sensor

Started Mar 14, 2011 | Discussions thread
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50mm or 85mm on DX sensor
Mar 14, 2011

Hi all,

I'm in the market for a new lens, and I'm struggling to choose between the 85mm f/1.8 and the 50mm f/1.8.

My body is a D300s, and this will mainly be used for portrait photography and still life photography in combination with off-camera flash.

I worry that with the crop factor, the 85mm is going to be too long, but at the same time, you don't get the same compression from a 50mm lens as you do from an 85mm, so I worry that it's not as suitable for portraits.

Or am I wrong? My understanding is that the crop basically means that a lens designed for a 35mm film or digital full-frame body covers more than just the sensor. This means that your image is cropped. So the other optical properties of the lens would be the same as without the crop, because all that is happening is that some of the 'image' is being projected outside the area covered by the sensor. Am I hopelessly wrong on this ?

Anyway, enough rambling - I guess the question comes down to which is the better lens for this purpose on a DX sensor camera

Thanks in advance!

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