Nikon 50mm f/1.8D Lens: The Budget Buster
Fastest aperture: f/1.8
Slowest aperture: f/22
Size: 2.5x1.5 inches
Weight: 5.5 ounces
Number of elements: 6 in 5 groups
Number of Blades:7
Made in: China
Released: March 2008 (based off the 1991 model)
Stand-out Spec:The only lens of the four to stop down to f/22.
Click for a more in depth breakdown of this lens.
Who Should buy it: Those with mid-level or Pro DSLR’s (anyone with a D7000/D90 series or higher), budget-minded individuals, those who are willing to sacrifice ½ a stop. .
Who should skip it: Those with entry-level DSLR’s and prosumers DSLR’s (D5000 series or lower).
Just because the 50mm f/1.8D lens is Nikon’s cheapest, doesn’t mean by any means that it is its worst.In fact this is the only 50 of the four to stop down to f/22—the other three go to f/16.
Like the 50mm f/1.4D lens, this one is also based off an older model, although not one from the 70’s. Our SQF’s reveal that it is fairly comparable in terms of sharpness to the 50mm f/1.4D lens—at a size of 5x7 it scored an A+ rating at all apertures. However at 11x14, it dipped into the A range at f/1.8 and f/2.8. The larger the print size after 11x14, the more the disparity between the two D-series lenses increases.
While video is possible with this lens, we really wouldn’t recommend it. The 50 1/.8D is essentially high-end Nikkor optics, in a cheaper-quality plastic housing. While this results in it being the lightest of the four lenses, it also means it has scratchy manual focusing.
Like its D-series counterpart, this lenses biggest negative is it only works with the higher end cameras. However, if you have a D90, D7000, D300, D300s, D700, D3, D3x or D3s and are looking for the most bang-for-your-buck, look no further than this little guy.