Choosing 85mm for Z6

Started 11 months ago | Questions thread
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SpacemanUA Senior Member • Posts: 1,709
Choosing 85mm for Z6


I'm choosing a portrait lens for my Z6 and need some advice on it Here are my options:

1. Nikon 85/1.8G - $400 new gray market/$540 new with local Nikon warranty

2. Nikon 85/1.4G - $950-1050 used

3. Tamron 85/1.8 VC - $789 with Tamron 5 years warranty

4. Sigma 85/1.4 Art - no offers for used lenses so far but they usually go for about $950-1050

5. Sigma 135/1.8 Art - missed an offer for used one for $850, usually they go for about the same $1000-1100 as 85/1.4.

6. Nikon Z 85/1.8 - $920 with European warranty / $1170 with local Nikon warranty.

I always wanted to get as much DoF blur as possible during many years with APS-C cameras and thought that something like 85/1.4 will be my lens of choice on FF camera. But now I'm looking at the options and not so sure about it.

I didn't like 85/1.8G much when I owned it with APS-C body, wasn't impressed with it's sharpness wide open. But 24mp FF sensor is less demanding than 24mp APS-C one, so maybe it's not that bad. And it's very affordable, which would be great cause I'm pretty tight with budget.

85/1.4G - used options only (can't afford new). And it's from 2010, so I'm not sure if it's worth it. But it's Nikon, and it's lightweight for a 1.4 lens, so maybe it's a good option.

Tamron - looks nice, has weather sealing and VC, but from what I've heard this VC might cause problems with IQ. Maybe someone uses this lens on Z cameras and know if they were resolved. I like it's modern rendering, contrast and a bit swirly bokeh. It fits well in my budget and will be new with 5 years warranty which is amazing. But 1.8 still and thos issues...

85/1.4 Art - damn heavy thing. Sure, it's sharp and all that stuff but I'm not sure I will enjoy carrying 1100 grams of a lens with me. And it will be a used lens with no warranty.

135/1.8 - great lens. Still big and heavy, but it's 135mm. I've always wanted that "135mm look" while I was shooting with m4/3 and APS-C cameras. On the other hand, I got tired of using Olympus 75/1.8 cause this FL forces you to step back too much from a model. 85 is a more versatile option, but doesn't have that "look" of course. Anyway, I doubt I'll find some options on my local used market for reasonable price, so I guess it's off the table.

And Z85/1.8. As you can see, it's too overpriced here and I see to sense in getting it because I can get 85/1.4 for the same money or similar performing Tamron for way less. It's light and sharp but still "only" f/1.8 and I don't think it's worth it.

So, as you can see, the choice is difficult here and I will appreciate any help or feedback on this lenses with Z system.

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