Nikon 85mm f/1.4

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by Buy_Sell, Jan 20, 2008.

  1. At the same aperture, you'll get the same depth of field
    from any focal length lense if you adjust the distance
    to the subject to get the exact same framing.
    With all of these focal lengths (85mm, 135mm and 300mm),
    if the shot is made at f/4, and the subject is framed
    exactly the same, the DOF will also be the same.

    It seems ridiculous to complain that the 85mm f/1.4
    lense allows you to have shallower depth of field than
    the other two. Shallower depth of field is not a
    *requirement* for the 85mm, but a lack of that possble
    depth of field from the 85mm is a distinct disadvantage
    of the other two lenses by comparison.
    There will be different "perspective" results, but not
    different amounts of blurring. That is, a building that
    1 mile distant will appear large when using the 300mm
    lense, and small when using the 85mm lense. It will not
    be any more in or out of focus though.
    85mm is useful when the working distance and the framing
    provide the perspective desired. When compared to other
    f/1.4 lenses (and perhaps those close enough, such as as
    f/1.2 and f/1.8), there isn't much else that varies, if
    the sharpness the lenses is the same. Of course when
    comparing to longer focal length lenses there *is* the
    additional difference that such wide appertures are not
    Floyd L. Davidson, Jan 22, 2008
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  2. Buy_Sell

    Paul Furman Guest

    Yes I suppose so but the distant background goes out of focus quicker
    with a long lens.
    It's just the cost. The OP already has 85mm f/2.8
    Right but the background looks a lot different.
    Yep, so I think the 135 f/2 is more useful since it gives more apparent
    background blur if you want it, more than just about anything short of a
    300 f/2.8 and the DC feature gives even nicer bokeh. Somehow the 85 just
    has such a narrow range of usefulness to me wide open.
    Paul Furman, Jan 22, 2008
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  3. Buy_Sell

    Mr.T Guest

    You call that "portraiture work"?
    Lousy snapshot would be a better description.
    Do you really need a Nikon lens to get that :)

    Mr.T, Jan 22, 2008
  4. No it does not. If you make the *same photograph*,
    which means the framing is the same, the depth of field
    will be identical if the aperture is identical. The
    focal length will have no effect on the DOF, and it does
    *not* go out of focus any quicker.

    The _difference_ will be *only* one of perspective.
    That will make distant objects larger with a longer
    focal length.

    Actually, there is a variation on that though. Longer
    focal length will have a larger percentage of the "in
    focus" area in the foreground than will shorter focal
    length lenses. I don't recall off hand the exact
    numbers, but it's something like 30 and 70%, front and
    back for a wide angle lense, and by the time the focal
    length is 500mm or so (35mm format) the two are just
    about equal.
    The 80-200mm f/2.8 lense is not as sharp at 85mm f/2.8
    as either of the two available Nikkor 85mm AF lenses,
    though it is generally speaking good enough.

    But the whole point is that the 80-200mm zoom cannot be
    set for 85mm and used at f/1.8, to get an even shallower
    depth of field if that is the need.
    Larger with longer focal lengths.
    It does not quite match the 85mm f/1.8, and doesn't come
    close to the 85mm f/1.4. It is indeed more versatile in
    that way than the 80-200mm f/2.8 zoom.
    The 300 f/2.8 doesn't do any better than the 80-200mm

    DC of course will do interesting things no matter what
    the aperture.
    What if you don't want all that stuff in the background
    to be bigger than life? What if you *can't* get 30-40
    feet away from a person that you want a 3/4 frame
    portrait of?

    That 85mm f/1.4 is the best solution.
    Floyd L. Davidson, Jan 22, 2008
  5. Thanks for a great post!
    David Ruether, Jan 25, 2008
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