Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?

Started 2 months ago | Discussions
solamnus
solamnus Senior Member • Posts: 2,023
Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?

Just wanted to have some opinions on these lenses for my FE2?

Have offers for them in good conditions so just wanted to know if they are decent lenses. I know they are very compact and was "cheaper" Nikkors in the past but have a following now.

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anotherMike Forum Pro • Posts: 10,111
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?

Back in my FM2 days (loved that camera), I owned both. The 85/2 frankly was a touch of an under-performer; I wish I had been able to find the somewhat earlier 85/1.8 instead as it had a better reputation. I liked the 20/3.5 AIS I had back in the film days for sure.

But back then, I shot the hell out of the best lens of that era - the 105/2.5 AIS more than the 85....

-m

solamnus
OP solamnus Senior Member • Posts: 2,023
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?

anotherMike wrote:

Back in my FM2 days (loved that camera), I owned both. The 85/2 frankly was a touch of an under-performer; I wish I had been able to find the somewhat earlier 85/1.8 instead as it had a better reputation. I liked the 20/3.5 AIS I had back in the film days for sure.

But back then, I shot the hell out of the best lens of that era - the 105/2.5 AIS more than the 85....

-m

Thank you:) Yeh i do have the 105 which is also very small, so the question is how much use the 85 would get in reality. It does seem like a fun very light lens to bring and shoot street with for example.

I don't own any ultra wide lenses at all, so the 20 is kind of the same thing, it looks very convenient and seems to perform totally fine.  ut not sure how much real world usage it would get. On the other hand they are not THAT expensive so kind of fun to try them out too if they are ok lenses.

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yray
yray Senior Member • Posts: 2,273
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?

For competent opinions on the old lenses I suggest you could check Rørslett's reviews:

http://www.naturfotograf.com/lens_short.html

http://www.naturfotograf.com/lens_surv.html

He is not too keen on 85/2 ais it seems.

I actually have a copy of 85/1.8 HC, which he likes better. I found though that wide open the bokeh is a bit what they call "nervous", check out the toes:

I like that lens better at f/2.8:

This 85/1.8 HC is not what I would call tiny though, and, IMHO, the 85/1.8 AF-D is probably a better lens optically, not to mention 85/1.4 AF-D, but, as I understand, neither of these is what you're looking for.

Raticus
Raticus Regular Member • Posts: 307
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?

solamnus wrote:

Just wanted to have some opinions on these lenses for my FE2?

Have offers for them in good conditions so just wanted to know if they are decent lenses. I know they are very compact and was "cheaper" Nikkors in the past but have a following now.

I really enjoyed the 20mm f/3.5.  And if you can find a K-1 ring you can do some cool close up stuff with that lens.  Both the Ai and Ai-s versions I've owned over time.

I no longer own any manual focus lenses.  Of the ones I owned over the years my favorites:

20mm f/3.5Ai

28mm f/2.8 Ai

50mm f/2 Ai

105mm f/2.5 Ai

My daughter has 'em now with a Nikon FG.

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pluton Veteran Member • Posts: 3,421
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?
1

The 20/3.5 AiS is famous for being sharp close up, and less so at infinity.  It is a unit-focusing lens.  My experience on film backs up this generalization.

-- hide signature --

-KB-

solamnus
OP solamnus Senior Member • Posts: 2,023
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?

yray wrote:

For competent opinions on the old lenses I suggest you could check Rørslett's reviews:

http://www.naturfotograf.com/lens_short.html

http://www.naturfotograf.com/lens_surv.html

He is not too keen on 85/2 ais it seems.

I actually have a copy of 85/1.8 HC, which he likes better. I found though that wide open the bokeh is a bit what they call "nervous", check out the toes:

I like that lens better at f/2.8:

This 85/1.8 HC is not what I would call tiny though, and, IMHO, the 85/1.8 AF-D is probably a better lens optically, not to mention 85/1.4 AF-D, but, as I understand, neither of these is what you're looking for.

Hi and thanks yes i have seen his review and many others and it seems its one of those lenses that makes people very divided hehe. I have the 85 1,4 G and the af-d but want something smaller but still good for the analogue FE2s. So it seems to fit the bill for those, but not if they are poor performers obviously

Haven't seen the 1,8 you referral's to around much but will keep an eye out. cheers!

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Raticus
Raticus Regular Member • Posts: 307
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?
1

pluton wrote:

The 20/3.5 AiS is famous for being sharp close up, and less so at infinity. It is a unit-focusing lens. My experience on film backs up this generalization.

+1

Not necessarily the top pick for landscape.  But fun for up close shots, and you can shoot into the sun with it too.

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annettep38
annettep38 Regular Member • Posts: 126
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?
2

I took

this

with the 20mm. Frankly, it needed half and hour of faffing with the profile to correct this pic properly.

I'd rather recommend the 18 f3.5.

look here

this needed nothing but denoise.

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stolen: , my 24-70 nº297446 and my 85 1.4 AI 197908 REWARD for finding my stuff the rest is back thanks to WR from Cartago and Cañas OIJ

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CMCM Senior Member • Posts: 5,883
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?

I got the 85mm/2.0 in the early 1980's to use with my F3's. I mainly wanted it as a portrait lens, but I actually never ended up using it all that much since I was more focused on landscape and travel photography. It seemed nice enough for the portraits I shot with it, I don't remember having any complaints about it, it was just a low need FL for me, I guess. I have a 105mm/f2.5 AIS which I actually like better than the 85mm, although I didn't use that one much either.

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Paul P K
Paul P K Contributing Member • Posts: 639
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?

No experience with the 20mm so can't comment on that one

Had a 2/85 Ai back in the early 80's, used it on a F2AS and FE

Originally got a 2.5/105mm Ai as a short tele option, but in practical use found that one to slow for the shutter speeds I wanted to use it with

Back then did a lot of low light PJ style of shooting, where the mere half stop between the 85 and 105 meant, given the max ISO 400/800 of Tri-X, running into a lot of camera shake when shooting the 105mm at 1/60th

The 85 fared better better at that shutter speed, but for the rest its image rendition was pretty bleak and boring (yup, it was an image shot with an 85mm, but for the rest rather 'mwah' ...)

In the early AF days got the 1.8 AF D version of it, unfortunately much the same like its Ai sibling

Nowadays have a number of 85mm's, o.a. a 1.4 85mm AFD and an older Nikkor H Auto NKJ 1.8 85mm, which at least for my taste have a far more interesting image rendition

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solamnus
OP solamnus Senior Member • Posts: 2,023
Re: Any experience on the 85mm 2,0 and 20mm f3,5 Ai-s?

Paul P K wrote:

No experience with the 20mm so can't comment on that one

Had a 2/85 Ai back in the early 80's, used it on a F2AS and FE

Originally got a 2.5/105mm Ai as a short tele option, but in practical use found that one to slow for the shutter speeds I wanted to use it with

Back then did a lot of low light PJ style of shooting, where the mere half stop between the 85 and 105 meant, given the max ISO 400/800 of Tri-X, running into a lot of camera shake when shooting the 105mm at 1/60th

The 85 fared better better at that shutter speed, but for the rest its image rendition was pretty bleak and boring (yup, it was an image shot with an 85mm, but for the rest rather 'mwah' ...)

In the early AF days got the 1.8 AF D version of it, unfortunately much the same like its Ai sibling

Nowadays have a number of 85mm's, o.a. a 1.4 85mm AFD and an older Nikkor H Auto NKJ 1.8 85mm, which at least for my taste have a far more interesting image rendition

Just got the 20 mm and had several offers on the 85 f2. But the images i have seen from it have like you say, not been a wow factor if i may say so. Nothing bad, just a tad "bland" and boring. I heard from reviewers etc its a gem because of its size and 3d pop. And while im trying to see that in the images on Flickr for example i just don't see it. Its like you say, some images gets a nice perspective due to the FL of 85. But the rendering of the background etc is pretty uninteresting.

I also have the 85 f1,4 D and the G version and of course the bokeh etc is so much better. And while i could use the D version on my FE its a tad big though but at least its doable.

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