Dear Nikon: Please let us keep the 20mm F1.8G, Love, Dan
An open letter to Nikon
Dan Bracaglia here from DPReview.com. It’s been brought to my attention (mostly due to the nagging of coworkers) that the Nikkor 20mm F1.8G lens you’ve loaned us needs to be returned to Nikon ASAP. I guess this makes sense, seeing as we’ve had it for about 20 months now. But perhaps I can convince you, beyond a reason of a doubt to allow us just a little more time with it. I ask because I truly love this lens. And here’s why:
There’s no such thing as a perfect lens, but a lens can certainly be the right tool for a specific job, and to that extent, it’s perfect. Your 20mm F1.8G is just that for me.
I first moved to Seattle about five months before you shipped DPReview the lens. I’d previously been living in New York City and photographing live music. Back then I largely shot with a 17-35mm F2.8 (the lens motor has since died) and an on-camera flash. It was the perfect setup for the rowdy punk rock shows I frequented.
|ISO 12,800, 1/160 sec at F2. Edited to taste in Lightroom.|
But, after moving I realized I was going to have to switch up my music rig. I became aware that shows in small and mid-size venues in Seattle were well-documented, but shows happening in less traditional spaces, like friends’ basements, living rooms or art/community centers were often not photographed (despite being well-attended). So I launched a photoblog with the goal of documenting my local music community.
Out of respect for these intimate environments, I vowed to leave my flash at home and shoot available light only. And what could be better for documenting in the dark than fast primes?
When shooting shows with available light, three things matter most to me in a lens: its size/weight (too large = too intrusive), it’s brightest aperture and its focus speed. Your 20mm, Nikon, is a perfect balance of all these things. A look at the Sigma 20mm F1.4 to gives an idea of how big and cumbersome a brighter 20mm lens could be.
And when paired with my D750, the combination is fast-to-focus (using the center area) even in conditions that are often too dark for me to physically see. This is incredibly impressive and useful. Even if I can’t tell whether or not my subject is in focus, I need to be able trust that my camera and lens can. Simply put, when used together the D750 and 20mm F1.8G sing.
|ISO 12,800, 1/160 sec at F1.8. Edited to taste in Lightroom.|
I've been mostly shooting it alongside your marvelously cheap 50mm F1.8D, which was actually my favorite Nikon lens (shocking!) before I got my paws on the 20mm 1.8G. I use the 50mm for detail shots and the 20mm to capture the tone of the room. Both are coat-pocketable and don't add much bulk to the D750. Moreover both are sharp enough for me by F2.2 and fast-to-focus. The only thing I don't like about the 20mm against the 50mm is the price, which is much more than the quintessential fast 50.
That’s where the loan comes in. I know, I know, I’m lucky to be able to have access to loaner gear (we do ALSO use the lens for camera testing and sample image shooting), it’s just hard to justify spending $800 on a lens that will likely be soaked in beer within two weeks of my purchase (not that it's ever happened to your 20mm...). I suppose I should be grateful for having had the chance to use a piece of gear and fall in love with it before buying it. After all, the inherent danger of using loaner gear from any brand, is getting attached.
At the the end of the day, maybe I should look at the $800 price tag as less about the cost of the lens and more about the price of being able to continue to document something I love, without drawing much attention. And to that regard, I owe it to myself, my community and you, to pony up and buy one.
I'll do that, but maybe after just one more loan extension?
P.S. Anyone at Nikon want to purchase a slightly busted 17-35mm F2.8 for $800?
|.....the ROYAL LOTUS 2017/08/25-NEW YORK..... by Chiwat|
from Wild flowers
|Coffee and Mango cake by clicker88|
from Another cup of coffee
A Craigslist poster has discovered the worst possible way to photograph a car: taking pictures of pictures displayed on a cracked and scratched up smartphone screen.
With the iPhone X coming out soon, the title probably won't last, but the iPhone 8 Plus is officially the best smartphone camera DxOMark has ever tested, and the iPhone 8 is second.
Kodak's new Facebook Messenger chatbot is trying to bring back the 'Kodak Moment' by digging up your old social media photos and trying to sell you prints and custom coffee mugs.
Affinity Photo for iPad was touted as "the first full blown, truly professional photo editing tool to make its way onto the Apple tablet." This update makes it that much more convenient.
Yashica has released a new teaser video, and this one claims they'll be releasing an "unprecedented camera" in October on Kickstarter. Ready... set... speculate!
Storage solutions company Synology has just released its very first 6-bay NAS tower. Combined with the DX1215 expansion units, it can hold and control up to thirty drives.
We're always expanding our collection of product overview content, and we've just added videos for the Canon EOS 6D Mark II, the EOS Rebel SL2 and EOS M6.
The venerable Canon PowerShot G1 was announced seventeen years ago this week, marking the start of a line of enthusiast-focused compacts that's still alive and kicking.
Super macro photographer Can Tuncer captured these incredible close-ups of a single peacock feather using a special setup and three different microscope lenses.
After successfully crowdfunding the Biotar 75mm F1.5, Oprema Jena is at it again. This time they're bringing back the Biotar 58mm F2: the world's only lens with a 17-blade aperture.
Adobe's move to a subscription model is treating it very well indeed. The company has posted record revenue for the second quarter in a row, hauling in a mind-boggling $1.84 billion.
More details have emerged about the potential sale of Blackstone's 45% stake in iconic camera brand Leica.
Popular mobile editing app Snapseed just got a major update that includes a new interface and 11 new presets for both Android and iOS, as well as adding the Perspective tool to the iOS version.
It might sound like a strange idea, but taking macro photos of boiling water can actually result in some really cool photographs. A good photo experiment for a rainy day.
The database was created to "break with the narrow lens through which history… has been recorded" by equipping those who commission photography with "the resources to discover photographers of color available for assignments.
Lensbaby has released two new optics for their special "optic swap system." The Lensbaby Sweet 80 Optic gives you that trademark sweet spot of focus, while the Creative Bokeh optic gives you 9 different drop in aperture plate options to play with.
TechCrunch has already posted their review of the upcoming iPhone 8 (not yet the iPhone X), and they're calling it "a look into the augmented future of photography."
Affinity Photo is a $50 photo editing software with no subscriptions. That's it – pay for it once and you're done. And we think it's actually pretty darn good.
Instagram is currently testing a major change to the app's profile layout: replacing the 3-photo across grid with a 4-photo grid... and some users are NOT taking the news well.
A report by USSRPhoto is shedding some light on the return of the famed Zenit camera brand. It seems the full-frame mirrorless camera they're working on will be made in part by Leica using components from the Leica SL.
According to a reliable Korean report, Samsung is developing a smartphone sensor that's capable of super slow motion. Translation: Samsung's next batch of Galaxy smartphones may be able to shoot 1,000fps.
This simple photograph of a seahorse and Q-tip has taken the internet by storm. We spoke to photographer Justin Hofman about how it was captured, and what it means to him.
After a massive leak last week, Profoto has officially debuted the Profoto A1: the company's first on-camera flash system that they're calling "the world's smallest studio flash."
"When the first hyperfocal distance charts were designed, someone decided that an acceptably sharp background contained some blur — enough to notice in a medium-sized print [...] After that point, nearly every other hyperfocal chart followed suit."
The Canon EOS Rebel SL2 (also known as the EOS 200D) is the company's impressively compact entry-level DSLR. Packing a 24MP APS-C sensor, DIGIC 7 processor and Dual Pixel AF, it promises a lot of bang for the buck. And while not mind-blowing, it handles most tasks very well.
Correct these four common composition mistakes and your photos will be more balanced, tell a better story, and lead your viewer's eye where you want it to go.
The rugged, compact 360° action camera Kodak unveiled at Photokina in 2016, the Kodak PixPro Orbit 360, is finally available in the United States.
iOS 11 launches tomorrow, and it'll save all of your pictures in a new high efficiency image format called HEIC. Fortunately, there's now a converter that will let you turn those photos back into JPEGs.
Photo protection company ImageRights recently released a new service that lets non-subscribers take advantage of their streamlined copyright registration system that checks for errors and fills out all the required forms for you.
What's the difference between a $200 circular polarizing filter and a $100 circular polarizing filter? Roger Cicala at Lens Rentals put six different filters through a few tests to find out.