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AF-S 85mm f/1.8G v. AF 85mm f/1.8D Nikkors...

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David H. Hartman:
Any opinion on these lenses? My understanding is the AF-S version is ALL plastic while the AF-D version is plastic outside and metal inside. The AF-S has the M/A focus feature while the AF-D has to have the AF switch on the body changed to the manual position to use manual focus.

How to they compare in sharpness? What about flare and ghost: is there an important difference? and what about bokeh? These are portrait length lenses so although I'm fond of sharp lenses flare and ghost control and bokeh trump sharpness.

I don't expect I'll own an AF-S 85mm f/1.4G this side of Jordan.

Dave Hartman

Ian Watson:
I have not tried the AF-D version but remember reading that its bokeh was a bit harsh. The AF-S lens does very well here.

The AF-S lens may be entirely plastic but that is probably more of a problem in our heads than in reality. Autofocus is reliable. Manual focus is hindered by a very short throw and a slight lag in response when changing direction. It is possible but you will not enjoy it. Sharpness is all you could ask. Flare and ghosts? I pay less attention to where the sun is with the AF-S 1.8G than I do with my AF-D 1.4D. I do not remember the former giving me trouble.

Does your budget stretch to the 85mm f/1.4D? It is all metal and glass, except for the plastic ring that selects manual or autofocus. These rings once had a tendency to crack but Nikon seems to have quietly fixed the problem over the years. Rendering is lovely! Just be careful when the sun is just outside the frame. I should probably find where I put the hood......

Ian Watson:
Here are a couple of examples from the AF-S 85mm f/1.8G. The first is at f/2, the second is at f/2.8.

I have used and enjoy both of them and I agree with Ian. At the end, I have the 85mm1.8G

Nasos Kosmas:
I still have the G version but not the D
I can say that is very sharp across the frame, very neutral, a little higher contrast , little cold rendering, and the things I don't like: pink-purple fringing in the out of focus areas wide open
a keeper for me :)
this is f 2.2 on D750


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