I am about to purchase a 50 f1.4 lens for tight shots under the basket in tournament basketball. I had thought about an 85 f1.4, but now find that from my usual vantage point, it's simply too tight a focal length....even 70mm is pretty tight. So luckily I get to save a few bucks and buy a 50. I do own a 28-70 f2.8, (as well as my workhorse 70-200 f2.8) but I want this lens for extreme low light gyms as well. I will be shooting it on a D3 now....and in spring I'll add a D4.
My question is which would the sports shooters out there advise I buy ...The newer G or the old D ?? Of primary importance is relatively decent autofocus speed, and optics (of course).
You could argue that the bokeh is a little better on the new version, and image quality might be slightly better, but you are really splitting hairs. The one compelling reason for the G version is compatibility with bodies that require AF-S lenses only. The D version will not focus on the V1/V2 or other low end DSLR's.
I don't see a real need to buy the G version given the extra cost.
Optically the newer AFS lens improves on the older lens in most areas. But the older lens is pretty good too. The only complaints on the newer lens is auto focus speed. Yes it is a little slower than the older lens but maybe not enough to affect your shooting, unless you use it from one end of the court to the other. I think it's slower speed is due to the long 180˚ focus throw versus the older lens 140˚. I was looking for an 50mm f1.4 lens about a year ago. My son bought the new AFS 1.4 version and I compared it to my AFS 1.8 lens. The new 1.4 lens was slower focusing and I wasn't comfortable with it. That's probably just me. I ended up getting a used AF 50mm f1.4D and am quite happy with it. I say try them both in a local shop and you decide.
Thanks guys.....this one has me stumped and it really should not. I am a big fan of the older D lens line but I may give the G a whirl here as the cost is not significantly greater. Good input though.....I need to ponder it a bit and then pull the trigger as they say.
Wed 05-Dec-12 12:47 AM | edited Wed 05-Dec-12 12:47 AM by PSAGuy
That may also be a good option. My D3 (and certainly the D4 coming my way in spring) handle low light, in the gyms where I work, pretty well even with 2.8 lenses. The 1.8 gets me a bit more...but not quite the level of the 1.4. Maybe a rental will do the trick and convince me.
Have you read the D800E review on Dpreview? They used the 50/1.4G for testing and had to do a lot of work to really test the camera/lens and not just their own equipement. They finally hit the ceiling of their test kit at 4000 lines per picture height.
Sun 13-Jan-13 04:40 PM | edited Sun 13-Jan-13 04:43 PM by gheck58
The g is way nicer and sharper. I've had all three and the G is superior. The flare on the D is lousy as with the CA. It's a beautiful lens with wonderful bokeh and yes the 1.4 is worth it. Just go for it. As with most Nikkors the resale on this one is very good so there is not much to worry about. Yes the focus is a little slower but much more accurate and at f/1.4 you'll appreciate that.