There are many articles and videos made that describe the importance of ‘good glass’. Your choice of lens makes a profound impact on image quality. In this video, DigitalRev compares banking on a super high end camera body paired with a cheap lens, and a low end body paired with a high end lens. The results are very clear. In most shooting conditions, the quality of the lens you are using will make for a better image then the quality of your camera body.
From this point of view, I would like to share my take on one my favorite Nikon lenses. The 50mm f1.8g is a lens that offers remarkable optics at a price within reach of anyone who can afford a DSLR body ( camera ). This lens is the reason I switch to DSLRs in the first place. I want to be able to shoot with something that gave the kind of depth, sharpness, and good color rendition that comes from shooting with a prime lens.
What is a prime lens?
A prime lens is a fixed lens – it has no zoom.
Choose 2: affordability / stunning optics / zoom
The beauty of a prime lens is that it teaches you to zoom with your body. You need to come to life, to move around to frame the perfect shot. What you get on the flip-side of this athletic prowess, is incredible image quality. A lens that does not zoom is much easier to build. So companies can dial in the optics. And the results can be stunning.
I would go as far as to say if you only had $200 dollars to spend on lenses, this would be the lens to get. The 50mm f1.8g is a timeless lens.
What does the 1.8 mean?
Simply put, a f1.8 or f1.4 lens has a huge opening through which light can pass. As compared to the Nikon 18-55mm kit lens, the 50mm 1.8g lets in 10x the amount of light. The lower this number, the more dramatic blur you can get in your images as well, as seen in the photo below.
Some more images shot with the Nikon 50mm f1.8g