Nikon AF-S 85mm f/1.4 lens not so hot.

Started May 22, 2013 | Discussions thread
Lance B Forum Pro • Posts: 30,647
Re: Something interesting

MisterHairy wrote:

I did mention the differences in DOF, but also agree that the points of focus differ slightly. If you do take time to read the words, you'll also see that I concede that it's hardly a "slaying" here.

That's all I wanted to hear. My beef with you was your original statement of "The cheaper lens simply slays the 1.4 all the way up to f/5.6 or 8. It's not even close for the first couple of stops. CA is also worse on the 1.4" was clearly wrong and I felt that needed to be called into question. Slaying was way over the top and even the CA comment was found to be wanting, according to the  tests.

I have no issue if you believe that the 85 1.8 is better for you and you stating that, but let's try to keep the comments realistic.

D800 + 85 f1.4 @ f5


@ f2.8

@ f5.6

Ray Ritchie wrote:

I have nothing against the 85 f/1.8g. I played with it the day I got my D800, and liked it. I actually went to B&H a couple of months ago looking for it, but it was out of stock (as it has been for months). They did have the 85 f/1.4g that day, however, and after trying that one out, I just decided to give myself a treat and splurge for it. I haven't been sorry. The 85 f/1.4g is the best lens I own, and I find myself looking for opportunities to use it.

My problem (and I suspect it's the problem that many others have with this thread) is that you said in your original title that the 85mm f/1.4g is "not so hot" and you claimed in the OP that the 85 f/1.8g "slays" it. Your images don't support those contentions, and especially re sharpness, they show very minor differences. I can get bigger differences than that with any of my lenses by taking multiple images, racking the focus manually, and re-taking the image, especially when shooting a complex detailed subject like that toy dog. But in any case, even if the difference is consistently there, it's trivial, and the image doesn't support your original claim.

Now you've added the claim of color neutrality, but haven't included a calibrated reference like an X-Rite Color Checker chart or similar to allow others to check your claim. So I suspect you still aren't helping your case. Saying "trust me" probably won't end the discussion.

BTW, I note differences in the focus of the two images away from the focus point. The stitching on the collar, for example, seems to be sharper in the case of the 1.4g lens. Maybe this implies a slightly different focus point, or perhaps a slight difference in aperture calibration? It's like the DOF isn't quite the same.

Have fun - I probably won't have much more to say in this thread, but will be interested to see the comparative images which led to your original claims if you get around to posting them.

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 Lance B's gear list:Lance B's gear list
Nikon D500 Nikon D850 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 16-35mm F4G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24mm f/1.4G ED Nikon AF-S Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED VR +13 more
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