A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?

Started Sep 2, 2013 | Questions
Tarigmu
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A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?
Sep 2, 2013

i was looking at these two lens for D7100: Nikon 50mm f/1.8G AF-S vs 50mm f/1.8D Can anyone tell me the differences and which one would peform better on D7100? or any other Lens would perform better ?

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Armin Hermann
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Re: A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?
In reply to Tarigmu, Sep 3, 2013

Tarigmu wrote:

i was looking at these two lens for D7100: Nikon 50mm f/1.8G AF-S vs 50mm f/1.8D Can anyone tell me the differences and which one would peform better on D7100? or any other Lens would perform better ?

The AF-S version has the AF motor build into the lense, so you can override instantly. It may focus a little faster also. But that does probably not matter for your application.

While the 1.8 is a great lense, i replaced it with the 50mm 1.4 as a portrait lense (on dx).

I can highly recommend this setup.

-Armin

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slimandy
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Re: A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?
In reply to Tarigmu, Sep 3, 2013

Of the 2 I'd take the newer one beacuse it is sharper at wide apertures and I prefer the bokeh, but I wouldn't use either for portrait unless it's all I had with me. I'd prefer longer, e.g. the 85mm f1.8G. I'm keen on the Sigma 85mm f1.4, but it is much bigger and more expensive, and I don't know how well it works on a D7100. That's assuming you mean head & shoulder portrait.

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romfordbluenose
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Re: A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?
In reply to Tarigmu, Sep 3, 2013

The 85mm is better as a portrait lens on DX. The 50mm is somewhat short on DX and far too sfort on FX.

Having said that you can use the 50mm and crop which makes it more versatile in some scenarios..

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NikonNature
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Re: A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?
In reply to romfordbluenose, Sep 3, 2013

OK, not trying to be too technical here, but I think it’s worth clarifying the ‘crop body’ concept.

A crop body simply takes a ‘crop’ from the center of the image. It does not magnify or alter the image created by the lens. So regardless of the body (FX or DX), shorter lenses (<50mm) have the affect of exaggerating the distance from foreground to background. Longer lenses shrink the distance – an affect known as compression.

If you took a portrait with a 18mm lens, the person’s face would look out of proportion with a big nose, and ears that seem to be set way back on their head. A portrait at 300mm tends to make the face look 2 dimensional. To make a long story short, 85mm is generally considered to have just the right amount of compression to look very natural and flattering to the subject. If you already have a zoom, you can take some sample images at 50mm and 85mm to see the difference. Of course a prime lens like the 85mm 1.8G will be sharper and give you excellent depth of field control too.

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chuhsi
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Re: A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?
In reply to Tarigmu, Sep 3, 2013

i would get the nikon 85mm 1.8 for $500

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The Big One
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Re: A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?
In reply to NikonNature, Sep 3, 2013

NikonNature wrote:

OK, not trying to be too technical here, but I think it’s worth clarifying the ‘crop body’ concept.

A crop body simply takes a ‘crop’ from the center of the image. It does not magnify or alter the image created by the lens. So regardless of the body (FX or DX), shorter lenses (<50mm) have the affect of exaggerating the distance from foreground to background. Longer lenses shrink the distance – an affect known as compression.

This is not quite right... it is actually the distance to subject which defines perspective, and thus a 50mm lens on DX will have the same perspective as a 75mm lens on FX, if all else is equal.  It has nothing to do with the absolute focal length.  If this was not the case, then P&S cameras with their tiny sensors and very short focal lengths would all deliver horribly skewed pictures.

A theoretical 55mm lens on DX would therefore give the same perspective as an 85mm lens on FX.

(On a bit of a tangent, things like DOF will be different, by about 1.3 stop's worth, between the two formats.  However if you stop down on FX even that will be identical.

Therefore, all else being equal, a shot with a 55mm lens on DX at f/1.8 will be pretty much identical to a shot on FX at 85mm and f/2.8.)

Try this yourself if you are interested - you can mimick this effect even with P&S cameras.  Figure out the crop factor of the lens you have, set the zoom to the equivalent number to a lens you have on DX, and look at the perspective.  If you were standing in the same place, with the same framing, of the same subject, the perspective between the two shots will be identical, even though the absolute focal lengths will be completely different.

Cheers

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NikonNature
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Re: A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?
In reply to The Big One, Sep 3, 2013

The Big One wrote:

is not quite right... it is actually the distance to subject which defines perspective, and thus a 50mm lens on DX will have the same perspective as a 75mm lens on FX, if all else is equal.  It has nothing to do with the absolute focal length.  If this was not the case, then P&S cameras with their tiny sensors and very short focal lengths would all deliver horribly skewed pictures.

Thanks for the clarification (correction ;-)... I agree that testing this stuff yourself is the best way to learn. Reading articles is a good start, but real world experience is where the rubber meets the road. So back to the original post, the 85mm lens on a DX body will require you to step back from the subject resulting in a naturally pleasing perspective. The 85mm 1.8G is supposed to be a great lens for the price.

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Reilly Diefenbach
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Re: A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?
In reply to Tarigmu, Sep 3, 2013

No fifty, they're just too close and too blah.

Assuming not a huge budget:

60G Micro  Breathtaking color and sharpness. Just about long enough.  Nano coated greatness.

85 G or D.  Any of them, same as above with flatter field.

70-300VR.  Extremely sharp at 70-200, pillowy bokeh, lots of possibilities for distance.  Color not as eyepopping as the above micros.

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Vladi Stoimenov
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Re: A good portrait Lens For the D7100 ?
In reply to Reilly Diefenbach, Sep 3, 2013

To add only one to the list of Reilly: another Micro Nikkor I use for portrait -105mm/2.8.
It is similar to 85mm/1.8

Vladi

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brightcolours
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Not a 50mm
In reply to Tarigmu, Sep 4, 2013

Tarigmu wrote:

i was looking at these two lens for D7100: Nikon 50mm f/1.8G AF-S vs 50mm f/1.8D

Neither is ideal for portraits. 75mm FF equivalent just is a tad short. Of course, you can still take portaits with 50mm on APS-C, but I would look at lenses a little longer:

  • Tamron 60mm f2 Di II Macro. Nice portrait focal length (90mm FF equivalent) with very smooth bokeh, smoother than that of both 50mm's and the Nikkor AF-S 60mm f2.8 micro. Also opens up a stop bigger than the 60mm Nikkor. Added bonus: doubles as 1:1 macro lens.
  • Sigma 70mm f2.8 EX DG macro. Very sharp and good optics, with its 105mm FF equivalent focal length sits nicely in the ideal portrait range. Doubles as 1:1 macro lens also.
  • Nikkor AF-S 85mm f1.8. Nice longer portrait lens on APS-C, with its 127.5mm FF equivalent focal length.
  • Tamron 90mm f2.8 Di macro (and its VC USD follow up). With its 135mm FF equivalence, a nice longer portrait lens which again will double as 1:1 macro.

The ideal portrait range lays on APS-C lays between 60 and 90mm. Personally I prefer the look the longer portrait end gives (so 85-90mm on APS-C).

The difference is that AF 50mm is the old lens, the AF-S 50mm the new lens. The new lens is sharper and a bit smoother in distant bokeh. The new lens has a silent AF motor inside, the old one uses the in-camera-body motor. The old one looks nicer, though.

Both will work equally fine on a D7100.

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