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Thread: Nikon lenses

  1. #21

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    My main 35mm system is Nikon, and I own a bunch of lenses. For portrait, I own a 85/1.8 AFD, a 105/2.5 and a 135/2.8. All are perfectly capable of exceptional results. Heck, even my 24-85 zoom does an okay portrait.

    Most of the portraits I do are available light candids, frequently indoors, so speed is very important to me; for that reason the 85 is probably my favorite of the three. My 135 doesn't get much use these days largely because of this issue. The 105/2.5 is the legend of the lot, and certainly I like it quite a bit, but the speed issue means I don't use it as much as I probably should.

    I will second the mention of the Series E 75-150, which is one of the other big reasons why my 135 mostly stays at home. I'm not a zoom guy, but that one is lightweight and sufficiently high quality that I frequently bring it with me. The 50-135, which I also own, is bigger and heavier and takes 62mm filters, and so doesn't fit in as well with a mostly-prime bag, since most of the primes I own take 52mms. The 85/1.8 also takes 62mm filters but I'm willing to put up with that for the speed.

  2. #22

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    I love my "first edition" 105 f/2.5 and my 24mm f/2 lenses. The E series 75-150, was made by Kiron, for Nikon, and as widely stated, is very good.

    Kiron Kid

  3. #23
    Mongo's Avatar
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    One other recommendation here, although it will seem a strange one. In addition to all of the primes I have for my Nikon, I also have one zoom and I'm extremely happy with it. It's the AF-Nikkor 28-85mm f/3.5-4.5 lens.

    Although it's a seemingly cheap lens (or at least it was when it was still being made), it's been the best performing zoom lens I've ever had. The barrel distortion at the wide end is just slightly worse than the 28mm f/2.8, the lens is almost flare-free without a hood (only becoming a problem with a really bright light source in the image area), and it's got a macro setting at the 28mm end that can get you some very interesting pictures.

    It's sharp at all focal lengths when you stop it down one stop, and even wide open it's pretty darned good. Unfortunately my version is the original AF lens with the skinny plastic manual focus ring, but I got used to that and have enjoyed the lens immensely. It's not nearly as solid feeling as a good manual focus prime, but it gets the job done. It's a fun "walking around" lens if you're out on a bright day, and the 28mm macro is a blast to play with for images with a lot of background. The bokeh is very smooth, with a good transition from sharp to out-of-focus areas on the image.

    The downsides to me are the filter size (62mm...not something I normally carry), the skinny focus ring (which was apparently fixed on the AF-n version of the lens with a wide rubber focus ring), and the "loose" feeling that all AF Nikkors have in my hands. But given that, it's still a lens that I find a joy to use, and that I've taken some pretty amazing shots with. If you ever stumble across one in good condition at a reasonable price, I think it's worth it. A real sleeper in my book.

    Be well.
    Dave
    Film is cheap. Opportunities are priceless.

  4. #24

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    Nikon 70-200 VR not cheap but worth it's weight in gold!

    I purchased a Nikon 70-200 VR 2.8 lens the other day after smashing my last (don't ask how!) 80-200 and can't believe the quality of this new vibration reduction one!
    I really wish I'd have bought it a long time ago now as every picture I take with it just jumps out at you-pin sharp and the colour rendition somehow seems to be more saturated and crisp. The vibration reduction mode is excellent and if you put the active mode on (for moving subjects) it's just mind blowing. I didn't really think it'd make so much difference! I can now shoot at slow shutter speeds using the widest aperture ( great for wedding shoots) and relax knowing they're going to be pin sharp with no blur. Obviously if your subject is moving a lot you'll get some blur but with panning you can get really great shots.

    I've found this lens well worth it's weight in gold and worth the extra cost.

  5. #25

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    Thank you all, each and every one of you. The information you have provided to me is a great start. I think the 105mm will be my portrait choice as I like that length in Minolta as well. Good compromise between the 85 and the 135. I might try one of the two recommended zooms, as well. We will keep you posted.
    Luke

    To create one's own world in any of the arts takes courage.

    Georgia O'Keefe

  6. #26
    gr82bart's Avatar
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    Another place you might want to ask your question is at the Nikonians: www.nikonians.org This is the largest online community of Nikon users.

    Regards, Art.
    Visit my website at www.ArtLiem.com
    or my online portfolios at APUG and ModelMayhem

  7. #27

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    Thanks, Art. Had already signed up for them. Trying to stay ahead of this curve so that I can maximize my use of the new camera.
    Luke

    To create one's own world in any of the arts takes courage.

    Georgia O'Keefe

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