Nikon 35mm f/1.8G vs 50mm f/1.4G

Some of our readers, especially those who are just getting into photography, frequently ask me if they should choose the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G or Nikon 50mm f/1.4G to be used for low-light photography. I decided to run a quick comparison between the two, along with some other technical information to hopefully make it easier for our readers to select the right lens in this Nikon 35mm f/1.8 vs Nikon 50mm f/1.4 comparison.

Nikon 35mm f/1.8G vs Nikon 50mm f/1.4G

Here is a quick summary of differences between the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G and Nikon 50mm f/1.4G:

  1. DX vs DX/FX – the first major difference I want to point out between the two, is the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G is a DX-only lens, which means that it will only properly work on DX sensor cameras like Nikon D3100/D5000/D90/D300s/D7000. The Nikon 50mm f/1.4G, on the other hand, works well on both DX and FX sensor cameras such as Nikon D700/D3s/D3x.
  2. Focal length – the second obvious difference is the focal length. The Nikon 35mm f/1.8G has an equivalent field of view of 52.5mm on a DX sensor, while the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G has an equivalent field of view of 75mm. Interestingly, both lenses fall into the “normal” or “standard” lens category, depending on the type of sensor they are mounted on. For example, on a DX sensor, the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G is a “normal” lens, while the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G is also “normal” on a full-frame sensor. However, if the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G is mounted on a DX sensor, it becomes a telephoto lens, since its field of view narrows to 75mm. If this sounds confusing to you, read my article on “Equivalent Focal Length and Field of View“.
  3. Maximum Aperture – the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G has a maximum aperture of f/1.8, while the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G has a maximum aperture of f/1.4. Both lenses are very fast, but the 50mm can pass through slightly more light than the 35mm lens.
  4. Minimum Aperture – the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G has a minimum aperture of f/22, while the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G has a minimum aperture of f/16. Note that the large minimum aperture of the 35mm lens is not very useful on a DX camera, since photographing at such small apertures will significantly degrade image quality due to diffraction.
  5. Closer focusing – the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G allows close focusing to just one foot, while the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G is at 1.5 feet.
  6. Filter size – the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G has a 52mm filter thread, while the 50mm has a 58mm thread for filters.
  7. Weight – the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G is about 80 grams lighter than the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G (200 grams vs 280 grams).
  8. Compactness – as you can see from the above image, the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G is smaller than the Nikon 50mm f/1.8G.
  9. Price – the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G is the second cheapest prime lens after 50mm f/1.8D that retails for around $200 at B&H, while the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G is more than twice as expensive, retailing for $435 at B&H.

Many are probably interested in seeing how both compare against each other in terms of sharpness and bokeh. Let’s take a look at the sharpness comparison first.

Sharpness Comparison

I performed the below tests on a DX body (Nikon D90), because it would have been unfair to compare both on different sensors. To get to the same field of view on both lenses, I had to move the 50mm slightly away from the test target. The shooting conditions were exactly the same for both lenses. Let’s take a look at how both compare in terms of sharpness when shot at f/1.8 in the center (Left: Nikon 35mm f/1.8G, Right: Nikon 50mm f/1.4G):

Nikon 35mm f/1.8 Center Nikon 50mm f/1.8 Center

The Nikon 35mm f/1.8G is an incredibly sharp lens wide open. As you can see, it performs better wide open than the 50mm f/1.4G stopped down to f/1.8. Let’s see what happens at f/2.8:

Nikon 35mm f/2.8 Center Nikon 50mm f/2.8 Center

Although both look very similar, the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G still has a slight edge over the 50mm f/1.4G. What about f/4.0:

Nikon 35mm f/4.0 Center Nikon 50mm f/4.0 Center

Now both look about the same.

I won’t bother showing samples from smaller apertures, because both lenses perform very similarly. Plus, there are very few situations where you would use very small apertures on portrait lenses…

Let’s see how well these lenses perform in the corners at f/1.8 (Left: Nikon 35mm f/1.8G, Right: Nikon 50mm f/1.4G):

Nikon 35mm f/1.8 Corner Nikon 50mm f/1.8 Corner

Don’t pay much attention to corner performance – it is typically unimportant for portrait lenses, since you would rarely place your subjects in the corners. These are provided simply as a reference, to get an idea of how the lenses compare against each other in the corners. As you can see, both perform about the same, with no notable difference between the two. Let’s see what happens at f/4.0:

Nikon 35mm f/4.0 Corner Nikon 50mm f/4.0 Corner

When stopped down, the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G clearly takes the lead – it is certainly sharper and has much less chromatic aberration.

The above is nothing new – Nikon’s published MTF for the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G clearly shows that it is supposed to be sharper than the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G when shot at the maximum aperture.

One thing you have to remember though, is that you should not only look at sharpness tests when choosing between lenses. Charts are not always 100% reliable due to their plain, 2D nature – a separate test with 3D objects would certainly help (going forward, I will be doing an additional “3D test” while reviewing lenses). There are plenty of other optical characteristics that need to be evaluated, such as vignetting, chromatic aberration, distortion, etc., which I will write about in upcoming lens reviews of the 35mm and 50mm lenses.

Bokeh Comparison

Another very important lens characteristic that you need to evaluate in a portrait lens is bokeh – the quality of out of focus areas in a picture. Lola and I both really love the way the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G renders bokeh – it is not top of the class like Nikon 85mm f/1.4G, but still very good for portraits. I have played with the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G quite a bit and found its bokeh to be pleasing to look at. Not as good as the 50mm, but still not bad at all. Take a look at the below photo of our son Ozzy, taken at f/2.0:

Ozzy Portrait

NIKON D300 + 35mm f/1.8 @ 35mm, ISO 360, 1/100, f/2.0

The background looks nice to me, I would say similar to the way 50mm f/1.8D renders it. When compared to the 50mm f/1.4G lens, the Nikon 35mm has 7 diaphragm blades, versus 9 on the 50mm f/1.4G. Those diaphragm blades do affect the shape of highlight circles and hence might appear a little less circular on the 35mm f/1.8G. Another thing to keep in mind is subject distance. Since the 35mm f/1.8G is a shorter lens, you would have to get much closer to your subject to get comparable bokeh.


So, which one of these lenses do I recommend? If you use a full-frame camera or primarily shoot portraits and need to get one of the best portrait lenses for under $500, I would certainly recommend the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G. For everything else, including day-to-day photography, I would say the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G is a better choice for DX cameras. Not only due to its focal length, but also its comparably good performance in terms of sharpness and bokeh. When it comes to focal lengths, while the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G is perfect on a full-frame FX camera, it certainly feels a little “too long” on a DX camera. Its narrower field of view on cropped sensors is quite limiting in terms of what you can fit into the frame, whereas the 35mm feels just perfect. We have used the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G for food, portrait and even landscape photography and I really liked working with this focal length. Take a look at this shot that I captured early in the morning in a state park:

Nikon 35mm Sample

NIKON D90 + 35mm f/1.8 @ 35mm, ISO 200, 1/100, f/8.0

I’m glad I used the 35mm f/1.8G lens for this shot, since a 50mm would have been too long to capture enough of the sky.

Last, but not least, is the price difference. I believe the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G is a great value, given that it only costs $200, more than twice less than the 50mm f/1.4G. Why didn’t I compare the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G with the older and cheaper Nikon 50mm f/1.8D? Because the latter does not autofocus on cheaper Nikon bodies like D5000.

Nikon 35mm f/1.8G DX Sample

NIKON D90 @ 35mm, ISO 250, 1/160, f/3.2

A note to technical gurus and pros: I know that comparing lenses like I have done above is not fare due to many reasons such as different optics/focal lengths and etc. I only did it to make it easier for beginners to choose the right lens for their needs. The above information is only provided for DX sensors – it is impossible to compare both lenses on FX, since the 35mm f/1.8G only works at half the resolution on a full-frame body and is really not designed to be used on FX.

  • David

    Thank you Nasim. Ever since i picked up the 35mm 1.8 for my D5000, it has been a wonderful experience. It is a fantastic lens.


    • Nasim Mansurov

      Thank you for your feedback David!

  • Nuran Afrasiyabov

    Thank you very much!

    • Nasim Mansurov

      You are most welcome!

  • Hessam

    Thanks Nasim for this article. Is there a major difference between 50mm f1.8 and 50mm f1.4 in terms of sharpness?

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Hessam, I have not performed any detailed sharpness tests between the two, but I believe they are pretty close. Obviously, the bokeh on the f/1.8 version looks worse and is shaped, rather than being circular.

      • Hessam

        Thanks Nasim. I already own a 50mm f/1.8 and I am not very happy with the bokeh of this lens, so I guess it’s a very good reason to spend few hundred bucks and get the f/1.4. Thanks again.

  • Yash

    Very nice comparison. In fact I have been searching the internet for a comparison between the two lenses. This is the best comparison I have found till date. For a DX camera owner, like me, it is really confusing to choose between the two lenses because there is an obvious price difference. I will go for 35mm now.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Thank you for your feedback Yash!

  • Rahul

    hi Nasim,

    I did some amount of indoor shooting and carried a 50mm 1.8D explicitly for this use, but I ended up using the 18-105 more as the 50mm is not wide enough for up close photos. I’d have to get a 35mm or 28mm prime ….those are a good deal more expensive than the 50mm 1.8D, so that will have to wait.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Rahul, that’s why I suggest the 35mm f/1.8G for day-to-day photography, since the 50mm is a little too long…

  • Bill Creech

    Great review of the 35mm f/1.8 and comparison to the 50mm f/1.4. Based on your review I decided I needed a 35mm f/1.8 to add to my 50mm f/1.8 and 85mm f/1.8 for low light photos with my D90.
    Cheers, Bill Creech

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Bill, thank you for your feedback! You won’t be disappointed with the 35mm lens for sure.

  • vu

    hi nasim:
    i read your blog every night. i absolutely love it.
    i might be different, but i’m seriously thinking of selling my 35mm 1.8 and getting a 24mm 2.8 af-d because i would like to go wider. it’d cost me another hundred bucks to do it. am i crazy to trade the extra speed for an older lens that’s not as sharp for width? i shoot only dx (can’t afford fx). thanks for giving up your time to provide us with all the helpful info.

    – vu

    • Nasim Mansurov

      VU, thank you for your feedback!

      The angle of view difference between 35mm and 24mm is pretty big, but at the same time, you would lose some sharpness and speed…so it is really up to you how you want to handle it. I would personally keep the 35mm and save up for the 24mm and get it later.

  • Michel

    Thank you for your input, I like the way you do your reviews, they are crystal clear !
    I’ve purchased a D7000 yesterday and I’ve noticed that with my 50mm I’m too close to my subjects. I’ll give a try to the 35mm, it looks very good, and for once, it’s not expensive.

    Thanks Again


    • Nasim Mansurov

      Thank you Michel! Yes, that’s why I often say that the 50mm might feel “too long” on DX cameras. The Nikon 35mm f/1.8G will give you approximately 52mm field of view on DX, which is just a perfect focal length for most photography needs.

      • David

        Correct me if I am wrong, but I don’t believe this is true – the 35mm 1.8G is a DX lens, there for it will give you exactly 35mm field of view with a DX sensor.

        • Nasim Mansurov

          David, that’s wrong – the focal length of the lens is a physical attribute that does not change with the size of the sensor. It does not matter whether the lens is labeled “DX” or “FX” – 35mm is still 35mm, and hence, it would have an equivalent field of view as a 52.5mm lens on a 1.5x DX sensor.

        • Sankha Jyoti Maitra

          Hello David
          35mm 1.8G will not give you exactly 50mm in DX format because of crop factor. Nikon has a crop factor of 1.5 and canon has 1.6 Hence for nikon DX format you have to multiply your lens mm with 1.5, for example in case of 35mm lens you have to multiply 35 x 1.5 hence you get 52.5 mm which is slightly larger then 50mm. But I guess it would not give you any effect in your photography, cause 2.5mm difference is hardly understandable in human eye.

  • Eric

    Hello. I have both lens, used with D200 & D5000.

    I had a real deception with the 35mm: use it for photo at night: concert, luminous streets. The quality is really bad, had to go back to my 17-55. Maybe lack of micro contrast, while I try to lower the aperture to 2.2, 4 or even more. The 50mm doesn’t have this problem at least.

    So I am quite puzzled with the good reviews I found about this 35/1.8.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Eric, you probably have a bad copy of the 35mm. I found mine to be extremely sharp, just like shown on the comparison…

      I would return yours and get a new one, or send yours to Nikon for repair and they will take care of it.

  • Bogon

    Hi Nasim,

    I have just accidentally discovered your web page. It is awesome seeing you sharing your knowledge and conveying information with your truthful sincerity. The elaboration is precise and clearly projected to newbies like me.

    I’m using Nikon D3000 for almost 1 year and yeah it is a very good DSLR for beginner. I have also purchased tamron 17 – 50 f2.8. Just a matter if curiosity – do you recommend this 35mm f1.8G lens since I have already posses tamron 17 – 50 mm f2.8 under my possession?

    Thanks and wishing you a good career ahead.


    • Nasim Mansurov

      Thank you Bogon!

      The 35mm f/1.8G is sharper than your Tamron and you can shoot at f/1.8 versus f/2.8, which is almost two stops of difference.

      • Bogon

        Hi Nasim,

        Thanks so much for your reply (seriously I didn’t give so much hope that you’d be answering my Q upstairs)…I’m gonna purchase this lense soon. Hopefully before year end.

        Thanks for the knowledge sharing.

        • Nasim Mansurov

          You are most welcome Bogon!

  • Victor

    Thank you a lot. After I read this I realised that I made the right choise.. in 3 days from Russia comes my 35mm f/1.8G :)

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Victor, you are most welcome!

  • mrborgie13

    Hi Nasim,
    Thank you very much for having this kind of website and its very helpful for all beginners.
    I dont have dslr and I dont shoot yet because I just want to make sure which camera and lens is better for me and luckily Ive found your website and it helps me a lot .
    Thanks again !!!

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Thank you for your feedback and you are most welcome!

  • Gabriel

    Hi Nasim,
    I found your blog some days ago while i was making a search for HDR technic.
    This message is Just to send you a kind word of thanks for you work, extraordinary effort and sharing, that really impressed me.
    Your knowledge, that you share with us, helps, i guess, thousands of people to look into photography in a different way and giving it the deserved value.
    Many Thanks for your altruism, that we don´t see often in the internet world without being payed, unfortunately everything is payed nowadays.
    Best Regards from Portugal
    PS: I´ve been reading almost every word you wrote here, and will vividly recommend it to others.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Gabriel, I appreciate your feedback!!!

      Have a wonderful weekend.

  • Grey

    I have the 50mm f/1.4G, but have been contemplating getting the 35mm f/1.8G for wider shots. From everything I see here, you’re correct that it’s a great value. I’m going to pick one up now for sure!

    I just discovered your blog tonight and have already gone through several entries and found them unbelievably helpful. It’s wonderful that you take the time to provide all this helpful and detailed information.

    I just started getting into photography in August 2008 with the purchase of a Nikon D60 (I got the D60 instead of the D90 because I have very small hands and it was easier to handle). I wish I’d discovered your blog much earlier! Better late than never and I can go back and read old posts. :)

    Thank you both for all the insightful tips!

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Grey, thank you for your feedback! I’m glad my work is helping you in becoming a better photographer – that’s what it is all about!

  • Raj

    Hello Nasim,

    I am purchasing the 35mm f/1.8G for my D5000 and was wondering if I should invest into a Flash (SB600)?

    Most of the pictures I will be taking is indoors at low light conditions.

    Also if I decide not to purchase the flash at this time what settings would you recommend for taking pictures of my newborn? With the 35mm should I be taking shots at the Aperature setting? What should I be setting my ISO at for maximum clarity and sharpness?


    • Farrs

      Raj ?? from Macro Photography Blog?

      I´m glad you followed my advice of taking a look at Mansurovs blog.
      Wait, Nasim will surely reply when possible.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Raj, I apologize for a late response – things have been crazy lately.

      In terms of getting a flash – absolutely! A flash unit is always a good investment and the SB-600 works great for taking indoor pictures.

      Without a flash, I would place your newborn closer to a big window, so that you get plenty of soft light.

  • Alvin

    I’m using the 35mm lens, I agree with your review. For DX users, this lens works very well, I used it on my D300s, really surprised how good its shoot at wide open aperture. But a note is it has some distortion so if you want to take portraits, go for full body shots, and not head shots cos you’ll get a wider version of your subject. It’s not that bad but I wouldn’t recommend if you shooting only head shots. Shooting kids/babies is fine.

    Unless you have a bigger budget and want a longer focal length, then the 50mm is a better buy for you. Right on the f/1.4 and shooting low/dim light will be very helpful.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Alvin, yes, the 35mm has a little bit of barrel distortion, but it is not too bad and it can be fixed easily in Lightroom/Photoshop.

      • Girish

        Hi Nasim,

        Does selecting the lens correction option in the develop module automatically do the correction for barrel distortion for Nikkon 50mm 1.8 D lens? This lens is already in the lightroom’s ;ist of known lenses.

  • Pankaj Arora

    I shoot with Nikon D5000. I have a AF 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 Tamron, also SP AF 10-24mm Tamron wide angle.
    I recently bought Nikon 50mm F1.8. Its not an autofocus which is pain in the night time, as I normally do shooting indoor (party, kids, friends portraits). I need help buying another BUT last “the best” portrait lens.

    would that be Nikon 35mm f1.8 (as with 50 mm I am bumping into walls; as its not wide enough)
    or should I go for Nikon 85mm.

    Please help…

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Pankaj, go for the Nikon 50mm for portraits – it is a great lens.

  • biancarosu

    Hello Nasim. You have a great blog-work here and you do an amazing job taking time to teach us, and explain more of your knowledge. Im just so new to photography. I had a really confusing time, while comparing nikon D90 and nikon D3100. I wanted something that should keep me busy for years, and something that can face low-light,outdoor, indoor, lifestyle, kids… I really dont know what I’m good at, but after experimenting more, I’ll know exactly what lens, and camera upgrade will be. I’m impressed by wedding photography so I look forward getting more of it. After few advices on facebook I took the d3100.
    Yesteday after I read your review for 35mm f 1.8 I just ordered it on amazon. I cant wait to play with it.. I’m on a budget so i didnt want to spent to much.
    Thank you so much for your clear review.
    What do you think , I should be fine with d3100, 18-55mm kit, and 35 mm f 1.8 ? for now..

    • Nasim Mansurov

      You have a great start up kit there – the D3100 + 18-55mm + 35mm will give you great results for years to come! Now you need to learn how to shoot! :)

      • Lisa

        HI Nasim,
        I also have the D3100 kit including the 18-55mm and surprisingly I’m stuck between the 35mm and 50mm.
        I’m a beginner and I enjoy taking photos of landscape alongside portraits.
        So with that being said, which lens which is capable of creating a sharp photograph as well as great bokeh, and also in terms of price I don’t mind the stretch as long as its under $500.00

  • jarine

    helo nasim!
    I’ve been following your web page since i discovered it last helped me chose my d90..thanks!

    I’m just wondering, if i should buy this 35mm lens or 50mm lens since I’m almost always on indoor activities..i would like to try portraiture with “the lens” or should i stick to my kit lens instead..

    (i love landscape photography however with my work i can only go out of town at least once a month.. )

    thanks and may God bless your site..=)

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Jarine, you are most welcome!

      If budget is not an issue, get the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G for portraiture. If it is, then the 35mm is a great alternative! If you want better bokeh, get the 50mm :)

      Hope this helps.

      • jarine

        helo nasim!

        there’s a big price diff between 50mm f/1.4g and f/1.4 D..! i thought these lens were the same..arghh!
        so,im a bit confused, again..which is better Nikon 35mm f/1.8 or 50mm f/1.4D? there’s a smaller diff in price..:)
        thanks again for your advice! :)

        • Nasim Mansurov

          Jarine, get the 50mm f/1.4D if you want to get good-looking portraits.

  • Suelci Pimentel

    Nasim ,

    lí atentamente a suas considerações sôbre a Nikon 35mm f1.8 e a Nikon 50mm f1.4.
    Confesso que fiquei em dúvida sôbre qual escolher. Fiz pequenos testes com uma Nikon 35mm f1.8 emprestada , mas sinceramente não gostei dos resultados.
    Apesar de meu equipamento ser DX :
    -Nikon D7000
    -Nikon 10 – 24 mm f3.5 /4.5
    -Nikon 24 – 70 mm f2.8

    Você me recomendaria a Nikon 50 f/1.4 ?
    Obrigado desde já .

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Yes, definitely the 50mm f/1.4 if you did not like what you saw with the 35mm.

  • akshay

    hello Nasim sir…….I am intrested in macro photography(insects and all)
    I am using nikon D5000 and i confuse in 50mm 1.8 and 35mm ,I also have Kenko extension tube.
    which lens u’ll prefer to me for insect.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Akshay, I don’t really know much about extension tubes, so I am afraid I cannot make any good recommendations…

  • louie

    Hi Nasim,

    Thank you so much for this review. Your blogs have been very helpful especially for beginners like me.

    I just recently purchased a d3100 with 18-55mm kit and 55-200mmVR lenses. I’m interested in landscape, wildlife and portraiture. I would like to have at least one prime lens (for indoor and low-light) but I’m still confused in choosing between 35mm f/1.8g and 50mm f/1.4g considering the 2 lenses that I already got..


    • Nasim Mansurov

      Louie, get the 35mm f/1.8G – it is a great lens and will nicely complement your other lenses.

      • Tiffany

        I have the same lenses as Louie…after reading though all the post I’m glad I ran across this..I’m was afraid of getting the 35mm because someone stated I will have distortion and I really don’t know how to go about change this in photoshop.

  • surend

    hello, im planning to buy lens for my D3000.

    shud i buy the 50mm 1.8/f or 35mm 1.8mm?
    sum said 50mm… im confused.

    im going to use it for birthday n wedding function… please help.


    • Nasim Mansurov

      Suren, please read the article along with the comments.

  • wochomi

    Hi Nasim

    Wow! Nice write up. Sometime back, I post you a question on which prime to get, and you recommended me the 35mm f/1.8G for my D90. Yup! I bought it last week! Really amazing piece of glass. I find myself taking more ‘action shots’ of my 1-year-old baby (she’s ONE today!!!) instead of the regular still pose. Suddenly my pictures looks more alive and I can see more expression on my baby’s face. And yes, the focal length is more practical than the 50mm f/1.8d, plus the motor is more silent and the fact the focus ring doesn’t turn is really an insurance to me when I pass my camera around the table.

    There’s one question, how do I take group pictures with the 35mm and keeping the image sharp for all the subjects in the picture? Shall I use a smaller aperture? But then it’ll be darker right? Please help. Thank you.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Wochomi, use a larger aperture and stand further away. The picture won’t be dark, if you use Aperture-priority or Auto modes.

  • Gizmo

    Greetings Nasim
    I have a D300 and Nikon 18-200 VR II, but I would like to have a prime too. For me, the issue is mostly light – I can’t take good, sharp pictures in churches (weddings etc.) without using flash. Is the 35mm enough to get bright, sharp pics even with the worst light sorce? I don’t have an extern flash, only use the intern… So the quality looks cheap and crappy and I’m ashamed every time I show my pics to the family, and since I have a great camera they expect great results…

    Have a merry christmas and a happy new year :)

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Gizmo, no, the 35mm or any other fast prime won’t help you if you are in a badly lit place. You will need to use flash – there is no other way.

  • Seymur

    salam Nasim qardas. men 35mm google da axtarirdim sizin saytinizi tapdim ,cox shad oldum. yaziniz da cox gozeldi, xeyli komeyi oldu, cox sag olun

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Seymur, tesekkurler! :)

  • Todd

    I love the 35mm f/1.8 on my D5000, thank you for the informative review.

  • Alan Millard

    Thanks for the Information Nasim, I bought the 35mm to complement my 18-200 on my D90 and my goodness the sharpness of this lens for the price is amazing. I have a feeling this little beauty might be spending a great deal of time on my camera.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Alan, I’m glad you like your 35mm – it is a beautiful lens!

  • dec casas

    i bought my 35mm because of this post and i don’t regret it. my 35mm has not been removed from my camera body since then. i love it so much! thanks nasim :D

  • Vinicius

    Hi Nassim,

    I am going to buy a D7000 and what to take pictures of travels, and portraits of my wife and children. Do you think that the 35mm 1.8 DX is enough for both purpose? Or should I use the 35mm for travel and buy the 50mm 1.4G for portrait?

    And one last doubt, I may buy the 60d instead of the D7000. In that case, do you know if the canon prime lens 28mm 1.8 USM is as good as the 35mm 1.8 DX from nikon?

    Best Regards,

    • 100%pinoy

      got my D7000 couple of days and no t happy with the kit lens, have the same situation with VInicious cant decide which one to take 35mm 1.8G or 50mm 1.4G…. thanks

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Vinicius, it all boils down to how much you want to spend. For general photography, the Nikon 35mm is a great lens, while the 50mm shines for portraits.

      As for your Canon question – I don’t know, since I don’t shoot Canon…

      • Vinicius


        But it would be best to buy the 85mm 1.8 in the place of the 50mm 1.4g for portraits? Because the 35 and 50 are to close from each other?


  • Chilly

    Hi Nasim,

    I had been wanting to get a prime lens for my new D7000. After much researching on the Internet, it seems like Thom Hogan and a few other “guru” believe that due to the higher resolution, D7000 requires a better lens to produce good results. I was wondering if you have opinion with the Nikon 35mm f/1.8 on D7000? I have seen very nice picture here and other site, but is it still good on D7000? Thanks!!

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Chilly, yes, the 35mm will work great on the D7000 and will give sharper results than a zoom/kit lens.

  • Manish

    Nasim am planning to buy the following combination:-
    D3100 + 35mm f/1.8 + 18-105mm.
    Would it be a good combination??

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Manish, yes – that is a great combination.

  • Ahmed

    Hello. Thanks for wonderful information and always been helping to every1.

    Can you please clear one confusion. I talked to Camera shop, they say, If you have NikonD90 , they 50mm/1.4G wont work with it, because it is made for AF-S. I want your guidance, Is it really a truth that This Great lens wont work/compatible with Nikon D90. If this dont work then what should be best alternate for Portrait while using NikonD90.

    Thanks in Advance.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Ahmed, your camera shop person should be fired! The Nikon D90 will work perfectly well with MOST lenses (even the older ones without motor), including the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G!

  • Murat Mutlu

    Hello Nasim,

    I have D40 and D700. I bought D700 recently.
    with my D40, 35mm f/1.8 was my favorite lens…
    I tried same with D700, with auto-crop, it gives exact same image area with 55mm f1.4 and without auto-crop it gives similar image area with 35mmof a full frame lens but with lots of fall of and distorsion…
    On the other hand on D700 55mm image area is same with D40 35mm image area.

    After all these explanations :); my question is that could you recommend me to buy 55mmf1.4 for my D700 or shall I use 35mm f.18 on D700? in case I don’t need high resolutions…

    awaiting your kind comments and thanks for this wonderful and incredibly helpful site…
    warm regards,

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Murat, why would you want to use a DX lens on FX and lose half of the resolution? You should get the 50mm f/1.4G – it will work great on both cameras you have. You can leave the 35mm on your D40 permanently and use the 50mm on the D700.

  • Kathleen

    Thanks so much for the info!!! I was debating to get the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G or Nikon 50mm f/1.4G for my Nikon D5000. I think I’m leaning for the 35mm just because of price and I really don’t think there is a MAJOR difference between the 2 since I’m still learning. I’m not sure if anyone asked this already, but what is the difference between the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G AF-S DX vs. the Nikon 35mm f/1.4G AF-S? Is there much difference??

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Kathleen, there is a huge difference between the Nikon 35mm f/1.4G and Nikon 35mm f/1.8G DX – price being the #1 difference ;-) For your camera, the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G DX would be a great fit, unless you only shoot portraits (in which case I would recommend to go with the 50mm f/1.4G lens instead).

      • Kathleen

        I think I’m leaning towards the 50mm f/1.4G because I do take a lot of portrait pictures and I’ve heard so many good things about this lens!!
        But I was also wondering about a wide angle lens. I was looking into the Tokina 12-24mm f/4 AT-X 124 AF Pro DX II Lens. Mainly because of cost. Do you have any thoughts or ideas about this lens for a Nikon d5000?

        • Nasim Mansurov

          Kathleen, yes, the 50mm is excellent. As for a wide-angle lens, the Nikon 12-24mm and Nikon 10-24mm are both very good. I have not shot with the Tokina, so I cannot comment on its performance.

  • bert

    Hello Nasim,
    Thanks for your knowledge, I have just accidentally discovered your web page last month before buying my D7K and 35m f1.8. I am just a beginner and i want to ask a question. How can i know that my 35mm f18 (bought it brand new) has a problem or defective? I truly believe that it produces sharp pictures but this one i have (lets say i am not satisfy) so i think there’s a problem. Please help.. Thanks

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Bert, unless every picture comes out “out-of-focus”, you should not be worried :) If you really want to test your camera and lens, you can try shooting a test chart at a 45 degree angle, but then you will need a tripod and careful focusing in order to get an accurate result.

  • Martin

    Hi Nasim!

    I’ve only recently come across your website and I must say that I learn more from here than any other book! Great articles as you are able to explain things the simplest way possible.

    Anyway, I still consider myself as a newbie in photography since I’ve only had my D90 for less than a year and have not taken any formal lessons. Nevertheless, I’m taking this very seriously since I enjoy doing it.

    I came across your article on the DX vs. FX format that was very helpful. Just a query on the statement I saw in this article:

    “The Nikon 35mm f/1.8G has an equivalent field of view of 52.5mm on a DX sensor, while the Nikon 50mm f/1.4G has an equivalent field of view of 75mm.”

    After reading your article on the difference on DX and FX, I was under the assumption that the field of view of a 35mm f/1.8G on a D90 would still be 35mm since this is a DX lens specially made for DX cameras. Wouldn’t that defeat the purpose of creating a DX lens in the first place?

    Or to put the question another way, since the field of view changes by 1.5x for both DX and FX lenses if you place them on DX cameras, say the D90, what’s the point of buying DX lenses then?


    • Chilly

      Nasim has helped answer a lot of my question before, so I’ll attempted to help him answer this…

      All the focal length on the lens are based on FX format but will be 1.5x crop if you put them on DX cameras. While the 35mm f1.8 was created for DX but you can certainly use it on FX as well but the focal length will be 52.5mm and 35 mm for the two different format respectively. Therefore, this lens is considered standard lens for DX but wide angle for FX.

      Hope this help clarify a bit …

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Martin, focal length is an attribute of a lens, not a camera :) So a 35mm lens is always going to be 35mm lens irrelevant of camera sensor, even if it is specifically created for one type of a sensor. In this case, the Nikon 35mm is a DX lens, but its field of view is equivalent to that of a 52.5mm (approx) lens when mounted on a DX body. I know it kind of does not make much sense, since DX lenses are created for DX cameras, but that’s how it all works…

      DX lenses simply use the middle part of the lens, while discarding the corners, which makes it cheaper for companies like Nikon to manufacture them when compared to FX lenses. DX = low cost, which is why people buy them.

      • Martin

        Thanks for clarifying that, Nasim! I think I’ll be getting myself a 35mm very soon!

  • Sutanu

    Hi Nasim,
    First of all I should highly appreciate you for providing such invaluable insights on better photography, and that too for free! :-)

    I am a serious amateur, if I have to put it in that way. I have a D3100 with 18-55 DX lens. Of late I am planning to add a 35mm prime and 55-300mm to my arsenal. I mainly shoot landscapes and cityscapes, along with low light experiments.

    Since I am going to invest a considerable amount at my standard, I would seek your prior advice on it whether I am doing the right stuff. Please suggest.


    • Nasim Mansurov

      Sutanu, you are doing the right stuff – the lens choice you have is great.

  • Tenzin lhawang

    Hellos Nasim,
    Thank you for all the wonderful info. This is great site I’m learning a lot. I just bought the D7000 few days ago but not very with kit lense. Please advice a very good portrait and landscape lense for my D7000. Budget is not an issue. Thank you.

  • gyanendra

    hi nasim,
    is d3100 with 35 1.8 + sigma 70-300 2.8 good combination for general purpose ? waiting for your view coz’ im trying to buy this combination.


    • gyanendra

      sorry sigma 70-200 2.8

    • Mike

      Hey Gyan, you should go with an 18-55 and 70-200mm lens.

      35mm is good for available light, but if you can’t get wide enough, you’re screwed.

      prime is a good backup lens for low light situations or portraits, for general shots 2x zooms are better/more versatile.

      • gyanendra

        thnx for your suggestion mike. ill keep that in mind when buying it.

  • piniritongisda

    nasim thank you so much for this review! :)

  • bryan

    hi nasim,

    thanks for sharing your knowledge and insights with us. just a quick question: which is better for full body and environmental portraits.

    best regards

  • reinhart

    hi Nassem, i have a D3100 and nikkor 18-200mm but im not contented with its sharpness. i like shooting portraits ,events and landscape and i want another lens. i’m thinking between 35mm or 50 mm, which should i pick?
    anyway i’m always thanking you for sharing us these knowledge, more power..

  • Jennifer Wilbur

    I shoot with a D80 and I have a 50MM 1.4 but was thinking perhaps I should go for the 85MM 1.4. I shoot a little of everything (mostly press events but have to do a bit of everything) – need something fast, SHARP and will work well if I don’t want the bounce flash. Would the 85MM do a better job?


  • Yuzar Virza

    Hi Nasim,
    Good information to me, Now I can decide the lens to buy after I read your comparison for my D7000. Thank You,

  • Eugene

    Hi Nasim and hi all,
    does anyone know where to buy the Nikon 35mm f1.8G lens at a fair price? I don’t know where to buy it, as most places are out of stock, and the places that sell it are hawking it at ridiculous prices. Anyone has any recommendations on where to buy?


    • Tony Padua

      B&H Photo recently came back into stock with the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G AF-S lens.

      I paid $279 plus shipping. Stay away from on this one.


      • Eugene

        Hi, thanks Tony. Yes, I just spotted that B&H recently had some stock of the lens. Thought that I should quickly grab one before it goes out of stock again! The touts on Amazon are really ridiculous! I tried getting one on eBay, but it was near impossible. People were just bidding like there was no tomorrow. Pity a $200 lens has gone up to $280, but I guess that’s reality. :P

  • Isaac Alviz

    Hi Nasim,
    Before i was really confused and not decided between 50mm and 35mm, but after reading your review, it gives me a great idea on what lens i should take with my very limited budget. Thanks man. I have appreciated your effort in doing those reviews. You’ve been a big blessing to us beginners. Thank you bro. God Bless you more. :)

    • gary p

      Thanks for your very helpful talks and comments

      Sorry for the redundancy but the 35mm 1.4 DX ($200) should help with baby 19 month old pictures in room lit room without flash? assuming the same conditions should it be “clearer” than the kit 18-55 that came with d5000

      and its autofoucus
      Thanks a lot!

      • gary p

        Oops i meant 35 mm 1.8 I thought the comments were for less than $200? I see 249 is the ceapest? Close enough but want to make sure I am getting the right one
        dx 35 mm 1.8 AFs

        THANKS again

  • Ron

    Hi Nasim

    Im just a beginner with basic knowledge in exposure. I find your website very helpful and with sensible comments from other people. I have my D7000 and a 35mm 1.8G AF-S attached onto it. My question is how I will shoot group of people without blurring other’s faces, let say 10 people. Can you also tell the me some settings. Your answer will be much appreciated, THANKS!

    • Isaac Alviz

      Use smaller aperture like F16 if you have good light source. Big aperture creates shallow depth of field. that’s why it creates blurs in your subjects faces. :D

    • Ron

      Thanks Nasim, and it did the trick. One more thing, I’d like to get some recommendations for the best way to set up my U1 and U2 (AF-mode, AF-area mode, ISO, Aperture I normally, shoot Portrait and Landscape. Any recommended settings will be much appreciated.

      • Ron

        I mean thanks Isaac…

        • Isaac

          For landscapes it always recommended to use apertures not bigger f16 and ISO 100 or 200. tripod is a must in every landscape photography… Actually i’m planning to have a ND(neutral density) filter to create long exposures shots even in sunny days.

          For portraitures in studio i usually have smaller ISO like 200 or 400 to lessen the noise and bigger iso like 3200 for black and white portraits, i usually use that in street photography. :D

          I’m not that pro yet. i’m still learning too. Let’s share experiences Ron… :D Enjoy shooting.
          God Bless…

  • aaron

    hi there!
    I’ve seen your site by chance while i’m thinking on what kind of lens to buy…
    I really want to take photography seriously and to be competitive enough in this field.
    one of my consideration is that i have a tight budget…

    With a D90 camera… il be working on wedding photos (indoor and outdoor).
    More so i’m fun of taking landscapes, and macro shots…

    in these regard which lens would you suggest me to have… the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G or Nikon 50mm f/1.4G. If the 50mm has edge between the two considering my concerns, i won’t hesitate to pay extra, considering its price compare to the 35mmf/1.8G

  • gyanendra

    Thanks nasim. After reading your blog and also from i got 35 1.8 with d3100 (without kit lens) from hong kong,its been wonderful journey eversince

  • gyanendra

    now im also thinking to buy sigma 70-200 2.8, would you think it go well with d3100. will these two lenses serve general purpose photography?

  • Louie

    Hi Nasim,

    Nikon has formally announced the new Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.8g lens. Could you also please make a comparison of this lens vs the 35mm f/1.8g and 50mm f/1.4g. I like portraiture, wedding and low light photography and this lens also seems to be interesting.


  • Tony Padua

    Hi Nasim,

    Thank you for a very helpful blog. I was shopping for the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G AF-S lens, shopping at where I usually buy photo equipment, but amazon would not drop the price below $300. I followed up your recommendation and bought at B&H Photo, and saved over $60.

    One of your landscape photos, the shot from under a huge rock formation like a bridge overhead, just really overwhelmed me when I first looked at it, something for me to strive for, to know when I’m good enough. Thank you for the inspiration.

    I took a three day course in beginning photography from some pros here in the Philippines. On the field trip I surprised myself by shooting a pretty good human interest picture. After shooting with only the Nikon 18-55mm kit lens, the 35mm lens should teach me to get close to subjects. Any advice you may have is appreciated. Thanks.


  • gary p

    Got one. Just back from a cruise to st thomas. Got the last 35mm 1.8

    Usa warranty for 189 no tax

    Didn’t have sb700 whch was a great price too

    Next trip

    Nasim thanks for lens advice

  • Chilly

    A story for those still looking for the Nikon 35mm f1.8 ……

    This is a high praised lens everywhere from many sites and blogs such as this one, so I decided to get one to try, besides, it doesn’t break the wallet. However, the price has been going nowhere but up in the past few months, I’ve seen as high as almost $400 which is really ridiculous!!!

    I don’t have a rush to get it so when I was checking Amazon last month, I came across the Gold Box Deal for $189 + free Tiffen UV filter, I quickly place the order. I thought there’s nothing to lose, I can cancel anytime if I happen to found it somewhere else. To my present surprise, just got an email from Amazon that it has been shipped and will arrive early next week!!!

    If you are not in a rush, this maybe a better alternative. This price has come down a bit but even B&H still charging for $279 now. And I always prefer to buy these equipment from authorized dealers such as Amazon or B&H for warranty.

    Next will be the hunting for SB700.

    • louie

      actually, this lens is now on sale at best buy for only $155+.

      • Chilly

        I am afraid it’s only an error or trick from BB. I actually caught this early in the evening. Yes, the discounted price showed up after you add to cart but not available when you select to ship to store. In fact, just to verify that, I tried ALL stores and none are available for pickup.

        There might be a couple of people got lucky, otherwise, it’s too good to be true!!

  • pankaj

    hi Nasim,
    I was thinking to upgrade to a FX most likely D700; currently shooting with D5000. I got couple of DX lenses. Is it worth using DX lenses on a FX camera? Or I have to update my arsenal of lenses
    “all -over “again? I cant buy any FX lens this year if I bought the D700. ALso there are rumours for D800 in the market? Should I wait for D800 or … I have also gone through your review about D7000 but definately going to buy FX only..please help.

  • Claudia

    Hi Nasim & everyone,
    I was wondering if someone can help me. I have the 18-200 lens but I think it’s too bulky and heavy to travel with it. I’m thinking about buying one of these 2 prime lenses 35mm f/1.8 or 50 mm f/1.4 for my trips instead of the one I already have, but I’m concerned about the zoom range I might loose without the 18-200 lens. Since I only want to take one lens, which one of these two will perform better considering I’ll be shooting landscapes, group pictures, close-ups, far away subjects, etc,etc…?
    Thanks, your help will be much appreciated !!

    • Chilly

      Hi Claudia,

      There have been a lot of discussions and many different opinions between 35mm vs 50mm, besides the different apertures. General consensus is that 35mm will be better for landscape and 50mm better for portrait. However, it pretty much depends on the situations. As a matter of fact, I found 35mm is sometimes too wide for landscape and 50mm is too far for portrait. Since you mention 18-200, I assume you are shooting with DX, 35mm & 50mm become 52.5mm and 75mm. None of these 2 lens will give you close up or far away. Personally, I would pick the 35mm f/f1.8 for it’s low price, high quality and mobility. For FX, I might opt for the 50mm.

  • Alex

    Nasim, thanks for great review!
    35mm is my choice for nikon d7000 instead of kit lense!

  • gary p

    Brother in law bought at bb for 200 wait was very short. So you can get for msrp

  • Nilesh

    Hi Naseem,

    Just stumbled across your website while researching on photography. I have a D5000, nikkor 18-105 mm and AFS 70-300 mm VR lens. I am in a dilemma whether to exchange my nikkor 18-105 for Tamron 17-50 F/2.8 (non VC version) as I want a fast lens as a walk around lens or do I stick to my 18-105 and get Nikon 35mm f/1.8. While I would love that fast aperture of 35 mm, I feel Tammy offers a little more usable range between 17-50mm at f/2.8, Please advise…

  • Pavan

    Hi Nasim,

    Greetings! I have come across your website when I was looking for photography tips for beginners and after reading few lines, I immediately bookmarked your page. I almost visit at least once a day to keep myself update on the tips you provide. Among all your tips I also learned one thing from you and that is patience:) It is so amazing that you reply to all our queries patiently and I think it is one of a true gift that anyone does rarely possess. Thank you for that…

    Coming to my query, I have purchased the Nikon 70-300 VR lens only after reading your review on the same as I’m interested in nature & wildlife photography. Recently I had a chance to visit the Audi delta pan race and I tried to shoot some shots of cars by panning though I could get some good pictures but most of them got blurred. I could not find any article on the same in your site. It would be good if you can post some article on the same.
    I was thinking to get AF-S DX 35mm f1.8G and after reading your review I have confirmed that:)

    Thank you so much for such wonderful site & ALL THE VERY BEST!!


    • Pavan

      Hi Nasim, Greetings!

      I have recently got the AF-S DX 35mm 1.8G lens and I’m very much pleased with its results. The photos are sharp and have a very pleasant bokeh though of late I have observed that I’m experiencing some focus issues. The lens is not able to accquire focus properly not sure why.

      Can you or someone would be kind enough to let me know if I’m missing something here and advice me of some tips. Thank you in advance.


  • Flo

    Your articles are by far the most articulate and comprehensible. thank you!

    I have a D5100…with the kit lense 18-55….I would like a new lense for low light and more up close and personal shots.

    I am looking at afs 50/1.4g…..or the afs 50/1.8g…..or now after reading your article the 35mm f/1.8g…..

    I understand the aperature differences….but how does the 50mm vs 35mm make a difference in the type of photography i am into?

    If money were not a concern, which one would i buy?!

    thank you again for taking the time to create such a fabulous website!

    • Kike


      I have a D5100 with the lens 18-105mm and I have the same question as Flo :)
      Wich one would I buy?
      – AF-S 50mm/1.8
      -AF-S 50mm/1.4
      -AF-S 35mm/1.8


      • joe joe

        50mm 1.8, no doubt!!! Its the best deal price/quality/usefullness

      • Nathan


        I have a D80 with lens of 18-105mm and 35mm f/1.8.
        If you use DX camera, choose 35mm/1.8 with no doubt. It’s standard.

  • andreas

    Hi Nasim,

    Thank you for your great articles. Just my two cents on the 35mm:

    I used it on the d700 in fx mode and it worked great. It just gets strong vignetting from longer focusing distances and also cuts the corners if you sto down higher than f4 (like f8 etc). So in general you can use it wide open for close distance portraits where you would anyway had added vignetting.

  • Sanu

    Nasim & Lola…. Thanks a lot for making this beautiful site. This site gives us lot of information and inspiration for people like me who does not know ABC of photography.

    It is unbelievable that you guys are even responding to each and every comment in your site. PLEASE DO NOT RESPOND TO MY COMMENT. Utilize your PRECIOUS time to answer someone else who is seeking an input from you guys…:) :)

  • Fabian

    Excellent comparison of the Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G and the Nikkor 50mm f/1.4G! Helped me a lot. Thanks!

  • Fabian

    Oh!!!!!!! What are your views on the new Nikon 50mm f/1.8G AF-S NIKKOR Lens versus the Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G?

  • German De La Moneda

    First of all I love your articles. I read the comparison between Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G and the Nikkor 50mm f/1.4G and I imagine that it would be almost the same comparison with the Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G. But I’d like
    to move into a full frame body ( I have now a D90 with a 18-200mm VR) in the near future. So I’m
    afraid to loose all the lenses when I make the transition to full, after all I’ll be using the 18-200mm for everything else, but portraits and low light indoor situations. I don’t know, what do you think I should do?
    Thank you for your time and help.

  • Kostas


    First of all congratulations for the well-designed website and the information it contains. I find it very helpful.
    I’m about to buy the nikon d5100. However my “problem” is to what type of prime lens should i get. Either the 50mm 1.4G or the 35mm 1.8G. In terms of budget there’s no issue. I’m between of these two lenses as I intend to take photos mostly at home, people portraits (close-ups and some distance), family photos as well as street photos.
    I do not intend to change lenses frequently so I’d also consider sth to keep it for a long time before I upgrade to another category.
    I’d appreciate it to have your advise on this and under these types of photo wwhich lens would add the maximum of value according to the use i plan to do.

    Thanks & regards

  • John

    Thank you Nasim for sharing your knowledge.

    I have a speed of focusing question.

    Regarding the 35 1.8 and 50 1.4 in use with a D3100 is there a significant improvement in focus time with the 35 1.8? Is that the reason that Nikon have brought out the 50 1.8 (i.e. because the 50 1.4 is slow to focus on the D3100)?

    thanks again, John

    • Nasim Mansurov

      John, the focus speed is not relevant to camera having or not having a motor. The new 50mm f/1.8G is faster than the 50mm f/1.4G and about the same as the older 50mm f/1.8D.

  • Dave

    I liked your review but you didn’t discuss chromatic aberration which the 35mm 1.8G clearly has. It is extremely easy to see in your comparison pictures. I do love it’s sharpness but I’m not sure I can live with that much chromatic aberration. I don;t think L$ 3 will correct for the lateral type.


    • Nasim Mansurov

      Dave, you should be able to correct the CA shown in pictures in LR3. This type of CA is actually easy to fix. The type that is often impossible to fix is longitudinal CA, not lateral.

  • Costin

    I found your review very informative, thank you Nasim! Having the chance to play with the 50mm 1.4 I didn’t like how it felt on a D5000 and so I bought the 35mm 1.8 with confidence and was not disappointed at all, they go together much better. While arranging the boxes I’ve seen on D5000’s box that they recommend exactly this lens for it, but who reads what’s on the boxes? :)

  • Milinda

    Thank you very much for your generosity of sharing the knowledge you have gained. Your reviews are well described, linked together and straightforward even a child could understand. I have learnt so much from them and… Thank you!!

    Few months ago bought a D7000 with a Sigma 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 DC OS lens after doing some research. However I got to know about the difference of the DX & FX only after the purchase and that was from you. I really love my camera and lens both and now I realise I have done a good investment. Below are some of the captures of mine and I would really appreciate your comment on them, and how can I improve if you could

    Now I am planning to go for a Prime lens and I am confused between Nikon 35mm f1.8G, 50mm f1.8G and Sigma 30mm f1.4. My use of this lens would be pretty much everything, portraits, landscapes, indoor, outdoor, some Macro and would like for some videos too coz my current lens makes a noise when auto focusing. Yes sigma is double the price and hard to compare with these two.

    I don’t mind even going for old Nikon D lens since I have a built-in motor, but my experience and knowledge on these are very low and I would really appreciate your recommendation.

  • Daniel Haaf

    I recently purchased a Nikon 35 mm f/1.8G for my Nikon D7000 and I love the combination. Great lens with more then great camera and to a superior price for the setup. Unfortunately I found your article a tad late for it to be included in my decision to buy the 35 mm, but its still great reading and one of many interesting articles on your site.

    Thank you for your work and dedication!

  • Jason

    Hi Nasim,

    Thanks for the review and in-depth info. Got the 35mm 1.8G and it is everything and more than you have explained. Thanks again.



  • rs125


    Matur nuwun sanget, blogmu bener2 bermanfaat buat kula.

  • Sayed Mohamed

    Hello Nasim Assalamu alaikum..

    I’m pretty new to photography, I picked up my D 5100 a couple months back. With only the kit 18-55mm lens. Now I am planning to upgrade this one..

    I’ve heard great things about the Nikkor 35 mm f/1.8G DX including, fantastic performance in low-light, a great first prime lens, and generally being a great lens for newbies and pros alike.

    Now, the new Nikkor 40 mm f/2.8G DX micro lens caught my attention, the versatility and range of different shots it can take that are on sample on the official nikon site has got me thinking that this lens could also meets my needs. Although Nikkor 50 mm f/1.8G FX lens is on my consideration.

    I take my camera with me pretty much everywhere. Therefore, I’m looking for a lens that can do some general photography work. The price won’t be an issue. I’m leaning towards the 35 mm and 50 mm because I do have some difficulty with low light conditions, however the 40 mm looks great for food shots or landscape shots. My primary need is to get the sharpest portraiture. I’ve heard that the prime lenses having macro abilities do this job well. I don’t know whether thing is true or not.

    However my question:- which one would you recommend as a first lens for sharpest portraiture photo with decent bokeh?
    35 mm f/1.8G or 40 mm f/2.8 micro or 50 mm f/1.8G ????

    Expecting your earlier reply

  • Jennifer


    I’m thinking of getting a lens for my Nikon D5000 camera. I was choosing between the NIKON AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G, and the Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G.

    I take mostly everyday shots, portraiture and landscape.

    THanks for the advice in advance! :)

    • Sayed

      Hi Jennifer..

      If u wan landscape, 35mm will be better choice. But for the portrait only, definitely 50mm as it has 70mm focal length on your camera which is best for portraits. It’s mechanical quality also better.

  • Alex

    Thank you very much.
    I had this doubt a long time, since I bought my D7000.
    My main doubt is in low-light condition, the bigger aperture f/1.4 makes much difference above f/1.8 on 35mm lens?
    And if this make, if compensates above biggest angle, lowest price, etc, about 35mm lens?

    Thank you to clarified me, into now I am inclined to buy a 35mm. But I appreciate if you answer my amateur doubt.

  • Kaila

    Hi! I just bought the Nikkor 50mm 1.8 lens for my Nikon D5000 and was terribly disappointed to take it out of the box and realize it does not auto-focus with my camera :( So now I need an alternative. My main interest in photography is taking pictures of my kids. I also love to take family portrait shots for friends and family. I want a lens that can give good bokeh, but I don’t have a lot of money to spend on it. Would the 35mm be good for portraits or should I save my $200 and put it towards the 50mm 1.4 (and wait since I can’t afford it right now?!)
    Thanks so much!

  • Uchhwas Nath

    I want to know the result of Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G with Nikon D3100 body

  • Jason

    to Kaila,

    In a nutshell, get the 35mm 1.8G you could not go wrong. I use my 18-200 VRII mostly but since I got the 35mm, it gave me more versatility with photography and if BOKEH is what you’re lookin’ for, you won’t be disappointed. With the current price of the 35mm, I suggest grab one now before it raises all the way up to the roof! Believe me, this lens is destined to be a calssic – very soon!

    • Jason

      Updated my profile

  • Arun Kumar R

    Hi Nasim, i was doing some home work from almost a month to decide whether to go for 50mm1.8g or 35mm1.8 as i use DX sensor Camera (D5000). I came across your website accidentally and i read your review. I can just tell you are AWESOME. Thanks for taking time to provide such detail information.

    • Deepak

      Arun Which did you buy 50mm 1.8g or 35mm1.8g ? even i have the same doubt!!!!!!!

      • Arun Kumar R

        I got 35mm/1.8g. I haven’t used yet as the lens is on the way. My friend is getting it from US

  • Aarthi

    Wonderful article :) I hardly have knowledge about SLR, still I found it interesting :) I was looking for a gift for a friend for his D3000 SLR n i guess i will go with 35mm f/1.8g :) Thanks a lot Nasim :)

  • Tony

    After reading numerous blogs and reviews, I’m still torn between 35mm and 50mm. I have a D5100, and I need a lens for portrait headshots (from head to shoulder). I keep hearing that 50mm would be better, while others says 35mm will be sufficient (since it is 52mm equiv on my D5100).

    I like the 35mm since it is wider and seems more versatile. 50mm seems too long for regular shooting of house parties and kids running around the house. I want the lens primarily for headshots but want to use it for other things as well.

    My question is:
    1. will the 35mm be good for portrait headshots? Is it going to give out the ‘big nose’ effect?
    2. is the bokeh on the 50mm better than on the 35mm, even though both is at f1.8?


    • Sayed

      Hi Tony..

      First of all, I’m not a professional at all. However, my answers are below

      1. 50mm is better for portrait headshot. 35mm give slightly ‘big nose’ effect, especiall in close scene.
      2. Bokeh of 50mm is better.

      However, if u take kids running around or inside the house, it will be better to go with 35mm. Also u can shoot better landscape pictures with this. Decission is what u intend for..

  • Arturo

    Hi Nasim! Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience! I have the 50mm 1.8 D, but will be getting a second hand 35 mm 1.8 G tomorrow. Even if some people say.better get a new lens from a shop, this guy had it for only three months and seldom used it. So I’m going to get it tomorow. Your review is very informative! More power and success!

  • Shubho

    Hi Nasim,

    First of all, the fact that your post is great is reflected in the activity level of positive comments.

    Thanks for a detailed comparison – certainly provides a strong perspective on both these primes !

    I have a D5100 with 18-55 as the kit lens. My query is in the choice of next lens. Should it be a tele lens(55-200mm f/4-5.6 / Tamron AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro) or a prime(35mm f/1.8G AF-S DX).
    My photos include landscape (during travel), indoor (people/children).

    Note: I was eyeing for the Tamron 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro, to start off with, but reading this post has made me think twice. Thus seeking expert suggestions/advice.



  • Deepak

    Hi Nasim,
    I know this question has been asked, but i request you to please answer my question.
    Can i Take good portrait with 35mm1.8g.
    Although I have a 50mm 1.8 D, its hard to focus kids while they are moving their head.
    Should i buy a 35mm 1.8?

  • Rajul

    Hi Nasim,
    Needed a little help from you on a choice that I needed to make.

    I needed help in deciding if I shoudl go for the the Nikn 70-200 or the Tamron version. I understand the price issue etc. I have done extensice research on the two but still cannot make up my mind. I am an amateur photographer who has finally understood a little bit about photography and now want to improve what little I know. I am totally self taught – reading from sites such as yours and a lot of others. Thank you so much for all that you do. It is indeed of immense help.

    With regards,


  • Kushan

    Hi Nasim,

    I am a beginner to DSLR & currently on knowledge hunting for my first DSLR camera. I was suddenly came across your site while I was confused with what would be the best lense for my D5100, out of 35mm f/1.8G & 50mm f/1.8G. Your site is really outstanding & extremely helpful to derive some major decisions by myself. Since then I’m frequently visiting & trying to capture much of the valuable knowledge which you willing to share. Yesterday I have ordered Nikon D5100+18-55 VR+55-300 VR+ 30mm f/1.8G package. I’m mainly desired in taking photographs of portraits & landscapes. Can’t wait to use the 30mm f/1.8G small miracle :). Nowadays I’m on knowledge hunting to kill the beast whenever the weaponry is ready :).

    Nasim, I would highly appreciate your knowledge sharing intentions & wish you all the success in your blissful career from bottom of my heart. Thank you.

  • anupam

    im an amateur photographer . i wanted to ask you something, i decided to get a nikkor 50mm 1.8 G, and i bought it the other day. i use nikon D7000 which has a cropped censor, and that 50mm lens should give me 75mm on cropped censor but it is still giving me 50mm on my nikon d7000, why so? is there any defect? hope you will soon answer my question, love from india

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Anupam, focal length does not change with the size of the sensor – field of view does. See this article.

  • stuart

    Hi Nasim

    I am very impressed with your website and your reviews are in depth and straight to the point.

    I have a dilemma about which lens. I have a D300s and have looked on the web about which ideal prime to have – 35mm DX, 50mm f1.8G AFS or 50mm f1.4 G AFS. I am concluding that the 35mm DX is a great lens, but for the entry level range whereas for the D300s its not worth purchasing and therfore to opt for the 50mm range. I use to have a 50mm f1.8D way back and loved it, so i am lookingto update. I generally do general photography and lots of photos of my son and family.

    I just need some confirmation on what to purchase. I am slowly going for the 50mm but not sure which one (1.8 or 1.4)


  • Oz

    I thank you so much for writing this post. The first one i came across that really answered the question for me. 35mm it is! :-)

  • Lady

    Hello Nasim & Everyone…

    I wanna ask something very quick. Do lens 35mm f/1.8g can be used in Nikon D50

    Thank you so much for the answer… :)

  • Carlo

    Hi everyone,

    I intend on using the lens for portrait photography. I have been studying and learning over the last year and have been getting asked by family members to take portraits of their kids for holidays and etc. Considering taking some portrait assignments and slowly starting a photography business. I own a D7000 and I am considering getting the 50 mm 1.4g. Will this be a smart decison to use it for portrait photography? Really would love to get the 85mm but price and it’s length on my camera are keeping me from doing that. Thank you for a great review.

  • zeeshan

    hello nasim i am using nikon d7000 with its kit lens 18-105mm . i want a prime lens for my camera . which 1 you suggest me 35mm 1.8g or 50mm 1.8g . which one is sharp and perfect for low lights ? please help am waiting for ur reply

    • steve ley

      Get the 35mm. quality is very similar and you will find the 50mm is too close to the action. i bought the 50 for my d7000 and then went back to get the 35mm. both lenses are fantastic.

  • Heath Williams

    Thanks so much for the comparison of the 35mm and the 50mm. I have been asked to assist with with some weddings and I’ve been torn between the two lenses. If I’m understanding your article, you would suggest using the 50mm to shoot a wedding?

  • E

    Hi I have same question as zeeshan above.
    35mm 1.8G vs 50mm 1.8G
    Focal length aside, how do these two compare in terms of distortion, aberration and most importantly bokeh?

    Thanks in advance

  • Troy Lilly

    Hi Nasim,

    Great website you have here with great tips for newbies like myself. I have a DX camera, and after reading this review, what I’ve taken away is the 50mm 1.4G is essentially wasted on the DX camera because 1) Limited focal length [75mm] and much higher price.

    Would it be your suggestion to look at moving to an FX camera body, especially if I plan to work as a full time photographer in the coming years? Currently I have a Nikon D5000. I have looked at the D700 and the D300. Of course, the main reason I haven’t made a purchase is the higher price tag of those cameras.

    Thanks, and I’ll be reading regularly.

  • Anirban

    Hello Nasim,

    I have a Nikon D60. Would you please suggest me that what I should buy for the everyday photography? Look I am not a Professional Photographer. Good photo means to me is like good clarity, good color, good texture etc.

    So please suggest me.


  • dave j

    Hi Nasim, came upon your website two weeks ago and I’ve been hooked. I follow your blog every day and was reading about the nikon 35 f1.8G last night on the lens comparison and since I have the nikon d50 I decided to buy this lens but it’s now temporarily unavailable at B&H. I’ll keep checking on it. I’m also getting the B&W XS PRO UV MRC NANO #010m lens filter please advice me if this is the right filter to get.This is the best photography website. The knowledge you share and teach us is great. I thank you for helping us.

  • Jackie

    Thanks so much for the explanations! I have both lenses now, using the 50mm in low light nightclub work and 35 in close up portraits.

    Happy shooting!

  • dave j

    Hi Nasim, looking back at the article you said you just use the clear filter which I’m going to do. I’ll get the B&W 52mm xs pro digital nano multi coated CLEAR # 007 lens filter instead of the UV when I buy the 35mm f1.8 g lens as soon as it becomes available. Following the advise of a great leader and that’s you, I can’t go wrong in buying these items. Thank you.

  • Danny

    I never regret buying Nikon 35mm f/1.8G lens, thanks for the article Nasim, was very helpful, this is a fantastic lens at an affordable price

  • Saurabh

    Very nice review on 2 very good lenses (as i heard)- simple with clear opinion. Nasim i wanna know that i do love to shoot birds as well along with people,street and building/architecture and yes also landscapes. So which would suit more for my photography if we consider bird watching particularly ?
    Hope to get an answer from you soon.

    • Saurabh

      another request i would like to add Nasim. As your comparison was written before nikkor 50mm f/1.8G released so we would love to see your comparison b/w 50mm f/1.8G & 35mm f/1.8G and of course your suggestion for choosing one out of these 2. I have nikon D5100 and 18-55 and 55-200mm lenses and planning to buy my 1st prime lens. So waiting for your review on later two.
      Thanking you in advance.

  • Deepak

    No doubt 35mm 1.8G is the perfect prime lens for DX format camera, sharpness is great and It takes great photos in low light situation.
    Great lens for the price. Trust me you will never regret your choice.
    Thanks Nasim for this review.

    • Saurabh

      Thanks for suggestion Deepak ! Even i am deciding finally to get 35mm f/1.8G

  • Anne Reitan

    THIS IS IMPORTANT!! Nikkor 50mm f/1.8’s autofocus does NOT work with d3100, d3000 osv

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Anne, not true – the new Nikon 50mm f/1.8G works perfectly well with all current DSLRs.

  • Akim

    I want to sell my Nikon 35mm f1.8g with rm500 malaysia. Anyone interested please contact me on my email

    Thanks :)

  • Robert

    Hi Nasim,

    I have bought a D7000 with kit 18-105 kit lens. I want to buy one for in-door shot for friend and my spouse.

    Between 35mm 1.8G, 50mm 1.4D and 50mm 1.4G, which one would your recommend to me.


    • Nasim Mansurov

      Robert, get the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G – it is a great general purpose lens for low-light photography.

  • aaron


    im a beginner trying our my first dslr which is a d3100.

    can you have a separate review for 35mm 1.8G without the comparison? i have this 35mm 1.8 G lens but i’m getting a lot of grain/noise. set auto ISO with the ISO range as suggested in your ISO article but it’s still showing lots of noise. I also checked your lightroom article about reducing noise using the ALT key. if you like, i’d send you some pictures..

    Is it because my lens is defective/bad? the pictures are really really sharp but im having problems with the grain when I zoom in on lightroom, even though the setting is very well-lit. the pictures i posted in flickr with this lens sucked so i eventually deleted the photos.

    • Jason

      Hi Aaron,

      First, D3100 will produce heavy noise/grain when you shoot above ISO800, even at ISO 640 it might still exhibit noise. You cannot compare it to the D5100 or D7000 in the APS-Crop Sensor line because these 2 models are made specifically to handle low noise at high ISO’s.

      Second, try changing your image quality/size to JPEG Medium or even Small Basic which would give you much better image output. Reason being, if you set your image quality at the highest setting like RAW LARGE FINE QUALITY, this format will produce data which may not be viewed properly with your computer monitor capabilities. If you try to compare a single photo and view it on different computers (laptop/desktop) you will see the difference in their quality. Also set your color space to sRGB as this is what most computer monitors are more accustomed to.

      Hope this helps.



      • Jason

        Hi Aaron,

        One more thing. Try also using the lowest base ISO for your D3100, i’m not sure if it’s lowest is 100 or 200, just set it the lowest it could go. I also suggest not using ISO AUTO but instead use EASY ISO if your camera has this feature. I am using a D7000 and I find the EASY ISO a useful setting for me as I could easily increase ISO using the back dial. A warning though, with this setting the ISO could easily/accidentally adjusted if the back dial is moved unintentionally. Once you get to know your camera the better you’ll get good photos with it. Try shooting as much as you could and get to know more your hardware.



        • aaron

          thanks for the info! that really helped, jason..

          sorry for the late reply, i got very busy with work. :)

  • john

    wow….the answer to my questions……thanks Nasim for this great review.

  • Azmat

    Hi Naseem it really helped me out but still i cant make up my mind for which lens to go with D90? Iam kinda confused with 50mm f1.4 and 85mm also i want to get a budget telephoto (shoelace budget to be precise). Iam more into lanscape and portrait photography. Would really appreciate your advice.

  • Tan

    Hi Naseem,
    Thank you so much for your wonderful reviews and the information you have provided…. I am a Beginner and your site really helps me to understand a lot of things….. However I am not able to chose between the 35mm 1.8G or 50mm 1.8G ? I would like to get into Portrait Photography plus also be able to capture nice Nature shots? Which one do u think is better and why? Though it might sound like a stupid question but what does a “mm” signify ? Does a smaller “mm” means more viewing angle (i.e. camera captures a wider angle) ?

  • pat

    thank you for your incredible generosity….I have a nikon 5100….I bought the 35mm 1.8 af-s and use it for shooting “bar bands” in low light…and I just love it…
    For shooting in the day “dog park” shots of running and playing dogs I use my veratile 18-200mm af-s vr…another just wonderful lens….so far, as a newbee, this is all I need…and after shooting for a few more months i will review my photos and see where I mainly shooting with my 18-200, and then possibly get another lens that reflects this use…
    Nasim, you are such a great help to so many….thank you …

  • Tomas Haran

    Azmat and Tan.
    I see that both of you say you want to shoot nature or landscapes. That is very broad.
    Are you looking to do large scenic shots? If so you’d want a 35mm or wider.
    If you like shooting flowers and smaller objects, or paths and things like that you will prefer the 50mm.
    For portraits the 50mm is great as it gives you a better depth of field and you won’t be in the clients face.

    If you are a newbie spend what you can afford and start from there. In this case the 35mm 1.8g and the 50mm 1.8d are about $80 apart. You can get either for under $220. As this is not a huge investment purchase one and master it.

    I find too many people not mastering one lens and then quickly wanting to try a different lens.

    This is a very expensive hobby/job.

    If you are going to be doing portraits of any kind pick up the 50mm. The perspective will be more flattering to your client.
    If you are looking for an all purpose lens, walkaround lens, inexpensive lens, full body portraits, but still sharp then get the 35mm.

    Yes smaller mm , wider view angle.

  • Isagani

    Hi Nasim,

    I currently own a Nikon D3100 with AF 50mm f/1.8D,AF-S 18-55mm VR and AF-S 55-200mm lens and a SB700 flash. Currently i am happy with my gears, but i am planning to add another lens to my gears. I was looking for wide angle lens but these lens are very expensive so i was thingking of taking this AF-S 35mm. I am using my gears to day to day activities and love to shoot portraits of my kid. For this kind of situation i usually use my 18-55mm because of its autofocus. I love the bokeh of my 50mm but it lacks the autofocus so I usually use it on still subjects. Would you recommend the 35mmAF-S?

  • Saurabh

    Hello NASIM ; The 35mm F1.8G is amazingly sharp and clear on my D5100. This is my first and only lense; I had not bought the 18-55 kit. I would recommend not the buying the kit-lens to everyone.

    Thanks a lot for your wonderful review and comment replies; I am in full agreement with your analysis!

  • DogyD

    I didn’t understand one thing, you said that the 35mm is a DX lens, and then stated that it becomes ~51 mm when put on a DX body, that is not true, the 35mm DX lens is a 35 mm on a DX body, only the FX lenses have the telefoto efect when put on the crop sensor camera. Maybe you’ve mixed up with the AF-S NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G (FX lens)
    For the ones who are looking to buy a lens, don’t just read what others say, go try them out and pick the one you feel is best for you.

    • Nasim Mansurov

      DogyD, the focal length of the lens is a lens property and does not change, whether you put it on a DX or an FX sensor. Only field of view does. In the case of the 35mm f/1.8G, it essentially does have the same field of view as a 52.5mm lens, relative to 35mm film (FX). So if you used a 50mm on an FX camera and used a 35mm DX lens on a DX camera, both would have a similar field of view.

  • john

    hi Mr. Nasim… i just bought a nikon d5100 with a 18-55mm kit lens.. I want to hve a prime lens..does 35mm 1.8g is a good start…I like to shoot both landscape/portrait and in low light…any suggestions? and What zoom lens would you like me to recommend that is kinda cheaper?

  • David G.

    Thanks for the comparison!

  • Diani

    Hello Sir
    I am deciding on a Nikon D3100 with the lens 18-55 AF -S VR that comes with the camera.. I am just a beginner. reading a lot of blogs and your page too do u think that the 35mm AF-S F1.8 prime as additional lens would be enuff to start or should i buy another 18-200 lens as well?
    Thank you.

  • Vijay

    Hello Sir,

    How is the combination for Nikon D3100 with 50 mm F1.8 G and 50mm F1.4 D. The search on only for portrait photography…
    Which one would you prefer…

    Thank you…

  • Kamil

    Hello Nasim,

    Thank you so much for the review which definitelly cleared my head meanwhile I was still comparing and thinking about a low-light lens for my D70… I definitelly decided for 35mm because I am not going to have a FX camera so soon and as you said, that the 35mm is real bargain for the the price Nikon offers it.

    Have a nice day,


  • CMS

    i purchases the 35mm f/1.8 to shoot my daughter indoor basketball games. still can’t seem to get ir right. pics come out not blurred, but out of focus and yellowish. making me crazy. I shot them at ISO 1200. I tried adjusting SO many settings and still can’t get it right.
    Does anyone have any suggestions. Oh, I mount it on the nikkon D5000. P/S. I tried auto focus and manual. Same results.

  • Bhargav

    Very interesting article, Great work Nasim, you made me take a decision.. 35mm it is. thanks a lot.

  • Abraham

    Hi Nasim
    I have just purchased a nikon d5100 with kit lens(18-55) and 55-300 telephoto and i wanted to buy a portrait lens and was little confused should i buy 35mm or the 50mm, also i was reading about the distortion with 35mm so should i go with 50mm lens?

    Also your article for beginners tip was excellent it helped me a lot.


    • David

      Both lens have almost identical image quality when shot wide open. I’ve always preferred the versatility of 35mm !

  • Fais

    Any thoughts on updating this post for the new(ish) 50mm f1.8G ?

    I’m about to invest is a second lens for my 3100 and 90% sure I’ll go for the 35mm but there is virtually no price difference between this and the new 50mm… So I was thinking it might be a better long term investment for those wishing to go FX in the future. Any thoughts?

  • J-Moke

    I happened upon this after hastily buying a 35mm lens for a D5100 and doubting my decision post purchase. As a self claimed ‘newbie’ I had no idea if I’d made the right decision and your review has helped me settle at ease with my lens and finally take it out of the box! You achieved what you set out to in my eyes (never mind what the techies say :-)). Thanks very much.

  • prasad

    hi nasim

    i have a nikon d5000. i would be covering a wedding shortly. not the main photographer ofcourse. will the 35mm 1.8g be useful for this purpose?. i already have the kit lens and one 18-200mm sigma lens.

    pl advise

  • Leigh

    Hello Nasim,
    As a beginner, I truly appreciate your website and all of your reviews, I have learned so much. I just received my AF-S Nikkor 50 mm f/1.4G, which I purchased based on your reviews from B & H. I was so excited to buy my first prime lens, maybe I didn’t do enough research. I own a D60 and it looks like, based on this article, that maybe I should have gone for the 35 mm f/1.8G. I’m after good portraits and great bokeh, so I think both will produce, but if I am correct on the D60 body the focus will be narrow? Should I return the 50 mm and swap out for the 35 mm, even though I hope to upgrade to an FX within 3 years? I would really appreciate your feedback and thanks SO much for your website!

  • Jagadesh

    Hello Nasim,
    I recently brought Nikon D5100, I want to shortlist between the two lenses ” AF-S Nikkor 50 mm f/1.8G” and “AF-S Nikkor 35 mm f/1.8G”. I read both the reviews from your site. I am bit confused which one to go for. My area of photography would be (Street photography, portraits, landscape)
    I need your opinion in choosing the len. Thanks in advance

    • Asis

      Hi see Nasim is busy so i thought I can help a bit here cause i had the same delimma! i needed lens for street photography , potraits and landscape. First i tried 50mm 1.4G. its a great lens for potrait. its not as sharp in wide apeture like 50mm 1.8G on wide aperture. or not even sharp as 35mm 1.8 open wide. But it had great bokeh. and was completely silent. I used it for couple of days.

      And i returned my 50mm 1.4G because i couldn’t fit my images on frame. Mostly for street photography and landscape. as 50mm would be equivalent to 73mm aps on DX lens Its almost like small telephoto lens.

      so ideally for all purposes i recommend 35mm 1.8G. Thats what i have at the moment.

      • Jagadesh

        Thanks Asis, i purchased 50mm 1.8g lens

  • Chris

    Hi, Nasim

    Previously i’ve got a nikon d5100 as my first dslr for only 10 months, and dicided to sell it and replace with d7000 do you think it is a good move? and i love shooting portrait i’ve got a nikon 35mm 1.8G is there any kind of setting on my camera to get a sharp portrait photo?


  • rusty

    Nasim – Thank you for the plain English, itemised list of features aimed at beginners like me. I am about to buy a prime lens and your article is one of the easiest to understand. Thanks!

  • rxe

    Hi Nasim,

    Great article, I have a D5000 body and am looking for a lense which can be used for lots of purposes. I am looking to go travelling for 6 months so I only have space for two lenses. I already have a zoom lense (55-300) and wanted another that can be used for other shots (portrait, scenary).

    In the UK the Nikon AF-S DX 35mm f1.8G Lens is £158.80 and the Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Lens is £184.99, which would you say is better suited as the cost difference is not much?

    many thanks and love the articles

    • prasad

      hi rxe

      i too have a nikon d5000. i also have the kit lens, 55-300mm lens, sigma 18-250mm lens and recently purchased 35mm f1.8g. i found all the lenses to be more or less equally good. i am not a pro, but my requirements have been served well by these lenses. of course, the nikon 35mm is in a class of its own. the images are very sharp and the bokeh reasonably good. if u use, the 50mm then you may have to back off quite a bit to get full body shots or cover a group. the choice is yours. not the least, the cost difference is i think substantial.

  • Darlene

    Hi Nasim,

    I have a Nikon D3000 with a 18-55 lens what other lens i can purchase new on photography love to take pictures of wildlife, family pictures pretty much everything, i’m thinking about the 50mmf/1.8 g can you help me please or do you recommend any other lens.


  • Adam

    Nice comparison Nasim. I also use the 35mm 1.8G on my D40, Its a great lens and value for money. I have a question though about my walk around lens. I have a 16-85mm. Compare with other DX walk around lenses the extra 2mm wide is a big factor for me. But sometimes I wished it has a little more extension. Should I consider replacing it with longer zooms?

    Many thanks,

  • Aaron

    Hi Nasim!
    I have two questions to ask you.
    1.) Why has Nikon made DX lenses for DX bodies? Can’t we use FX lenses on DX bodies? What is the need for creating DX lenses? Is there any advantage of using DX lens on a DX body instead of FX lenses?

    2.) Is the stated focal length on a DX lens exactly the same for DX bodies? I mean 35 mm FX lens on DX will be around 52.5mm, will 35 mm DX len on a DX body will be 35 mm or will it behave exactly like FX lens and give a focal length of around 52.5 mm?

    I hope you answer my questions.


  • Belskhie

    Hi Nasim,

    First, I’d like to thank you for your review with 35mm f/1.8G. I’ve bought it and it has been with my D7000, i just couldn’t take it off. It was lovely and beautiful in low light photography. I love the sharpness and bokeh. My friend and I compared my Nikon D7k+35mm f/1.8G with his canon 7D + sigma 35mm f/1.4 and my nikon is awesome at low light, very crisp than his canon. ^___^

    your advice is awesome and i’m very glad to take your advice. just lovin my 35mm… :)

    now, could you help me which is good at wide angle lens for landscape/arhitecture photography? as i’ve found the 35mm too close when i am doin interiors especially when i have too tight spaces. Have you tried the Sigma 8-16mm f/4-5.6 and tokina 11-16 f/2.8?

    thanks again… :)

  • Khurram Ali

    Hi Nasim,

    this is my fourth comment (I guess) other comments are still waiting to be answered… have an idea you might be having a tough schedule. But think I should ask it here as I can see you answered most recently in this thread even though my query is about new 50mm f1.8G.

    I have bought new D5100 kit w/ 18-55mm plus added the 55-300mm. But unfortunately I found your website later than my purchase. But thankful to the fact that I still didn’t purchase a prime lens and trying to figure between 35mm f/1.8G and 50mm f/1.8G.

    I am not sure if I’ll use it for wide landscapes or any thing in that area. But I can use it in my room. Say if it’s 10 feet distance before the subject, how many people in a group could 50mm be able to capture? take an example of a couch with 3 seats? and two side sofas? – assuming that 50mm lens on DX sensor of D5100….

    I actually have more towards 50mm f/1.8G after reading your review about it but you never strictly compared both in terms of usability on different sensor formats or in terms of portraits on DX cameras.

    what would you recommend between these two on D5100, considering that I’ll be using it for portraits and will be expecting better bokeh. even may be using it for far-most scenes (not wider though)

    • Asis

      hi there i have used 50mm 1.4g lens. its a gr8 lens for potrait with shallow depth of feild on DX camera. It is equivalent to 73mm appx on DX lens therefore it gives nice creamy bokeh. 50mm 1.8 g should be also good for potraits considering the focal lenght on DX camera and 1.8 apeture. But it won’t be possible to take group pictures or is not ideal for that purpose as you have to step well away from 10ft to capture whole frame. Maybe you’ll be able to capture 2 person from that distace on the couch but only upper body.

      I returned my 50mm 1.4g because i couldn’t fit my subject into frame and i had to step back a lot to get more subjects into frame. But it is very good for potraits. IF your mostley taking potraits then you should go for 50mm 1.8G. If you want all purpose and for group shot 35mm 1.8g is better. Ideally i would go for both. :D

      I am getting 50mm 1.8D very soon. ;)

      • John Richardson

        You know, stepping back is not going to kill you. Moving to compose a shot is something we all have to remember to do and not depend on a zoom to do it or swap off a lens for a little extra space.

        If you step back into a wall or off a cliff or into the maw of a raging bear or a monkey’s tail … well then I can see your point. There was a time when there were no real zooms worth a damn and many if not all cameras had fixed lenses. Go ahead you got feet use them!! :-D

        • Acis

          how far are you going to step back? He certainly needs to break his walls to capture all in the wall? isn’t it? He’s not thinking to use lens out an about where he can step back. for indoors one can’t get full portraits!

          • John Richardson

            I see, in that case I use the Tokina 11-16mm (DX glass). I use it for some family events, but not as much as the 35. Still though, once you learn how to use the Tokina, it really is a lot of fun. And even if Aunt Bessie is on the said and it makes her look a lithe after, just remember the lousy birthday presents she used to give you.

  • Chris

    Hi khurram

    Ive got d5100 10month ago but dicided to sell it and get a d7000
    When i have the d5100 that 35mm 1.8 it was my first prime lens
    And it is sharp lens i also use it in nigth photography i was so happy with
    The performance of that lens, until now i still have the 35mm 1.8 on my

  • John Richardson

    Hello Khurram,

    I use the 35mm f1.8 Nikkor quite often, but … I have found it to be an unflattering portrait lens. My suggestion is to rent a longer lens maybe the 18-200 f3.5 Nikkor. Try it out racked out at 200mm on faces then pull the same shot back to 35mm and see the difference in the face. I always shoot in AP mode to keep the backgrounds as out of focus as I can. In a studio you don’t need to shoot wide open, but no matter what ALWAYS focus on the closest eye.

    I was once told never to shoot a woman’s face with a 50mm (35mmDX), I did not understand until I did the comparison myself and did research to see what the professionals were using. I now shoot ALL portraits with a 200mm.

    But that 35mm f1.8 has many uses I actually keep it with me at all times, even on days when I am shooting macros. If I need it it is light and easy to carry.

    Just my 2 cents.

  • Asis

    Thank u very much for ur review. after reading this article i decided to get 35mm and returned my 50mm 1.4G
    first thing i noticed is that 35mm 1,8g is lot noisier than 50mm 1.4 while in AFS mode. isnt AFS lenses supposed to be silent? like 50mm 1.4G? or is it because of price difference?
    thank u again! apart from sound 35mm is great lens i love it!

  • Rami

    I’m glad to have found this website! Lots of very interesting articles that answer most of the questions I have!
    I already own the 35mm and wanted to get a faster FX prime and was wondering whether it made sense to go for the 50mm or to splash out and get the 24mm! (I know they are 2 very different lenses…) Judging by this article, it doesn’t seem like the 50mm has much to add other than the longer focal length, for that I think I’d rather wait until Nikon release a 1.2G!

  • esther

    greetings Nasim,

    Since I’ve purchased my nikon d90 almost two years ago (with zoom lens), I’m ready for a new lens.
    I wanted to purchase the Nikkor 50mm f1.4 d lens, but after reading your article, I’m not sure anymore wether to buy the 35mm or the 50mm lens. I’m particularly interested in making (self) portraits and pictures with a good bokeh and depth of field. What do you think..? Should I still go for the 50mm? It worries me a bit that the 35mm can only go to max 1.8 aperture, is there a lot of difference with the 50 mm that can go to max 1.4 aperture?

    Thank you,

  • Becks


    Have read the above thread with a great deal of interest, although perhaps a little too late having already made a recent lens purchase…hence my niggling doubt – have I made the right decision?

    I have a Nikon d5100 with kit lens 18-55mm which I am by happy with so far. My creative interest lies in close ups of wildlife/flowers/insects and landscapes although my most frequent use is photographing my 2 year old daughter, both indoors and out.

    I intend to get a telephoto lens (thinking nikon 70-300mm vr) later on, but have just bought a 35mm f1.8 dx lens. Is this the right choice for my interests or should I have gone with a better macro lens to ensure a complementary range from extreme close up to telephoto in time?

    Any tips/advice would be invaluable. My budget is mid-range unless of course I win the lottery!!!!!

    Thanks, Becks

    • jamal

      I have the 70-300mm vr, it is an exceptionally sharp and well buit lens, and an fx lens, so i can use it when i upgrade to full frame, -which is where technology is going anyways-, i highly recommend it for wild life and exterior photography, the draw back is the 70 mm is too long on the dx body, so dont bother using it indoors, nor can you focus on anything closer than 3 feet it is really great for outdoor portraits and candid street photography, for everything else get a 35mm, what i did is fix my 18-55 at 35 and shoot it for a week, then fix it at 50mm and shoot for another week, the 35 diffenetly served me best, so if you’re sticking with dx for the next couple of years go for 35mm :)

  • Becks

    And the more blogs I read, the more confused I become…

    Considering exchanging the 35mm 1.8 for the 85mm 3.5 which I think might suit my purposes better – any thoughts anyone?


  • darlene

    Nasim which lense will work beter with my Nikon D3000 a 50 mmf/1.8g or 35 mmf/1.8 please help me ..thanks

  • Mike

    I have a Nikon D5000 and was wondering what would be the best lens for outdoor portrait photography? Thanks in advance!

  • epy

    im using d300s, which lens do u think better to use, between 35mm or 50 mm

  • Harrogate Wedding Photographer

    I’m currently considering swapping my 50mm 1.8 on my D90 for a 35mm 1.8 mainly due to the fact I’ve found my 50 1.8 completely redundant alongside my 28-70 2.8. I do need a wider angle lens on the D90 and I think the 35mm would complement it perfectly. We’ll see I guess……

    • jamal

      so you are saying that your 50mm is redundant alongside your 28-70, so how does the 35mm differ from that, you are already covered in the range of the 28-70. giving the fact that both the 50 and 35 have the same f number ?

  • OZİ

    Slm arkadaşlar ben kısa film le uğraşmaktayım nikon d5100 e hangi lensi önerirsiniz.
    AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G yoksa 35mm f.1.8 mi yardımlarınız için çok teşekkür ederim

  • Vancouverite

    I just bought my first dslr camera which is a Nikon D5100 and do not know anything about the difference btw all the lenses until i came across your website. I just want to say thank you so much for having such a informative site. You explain to a point where it is so easy to understand and not like other sites where it is so technical to a point where I am just turned off and confused.

  • Nomad

    that settles it i was having a constant struggle picking 1 from the other thanks Mr Mansurov

  • Diana

    hello –

    I have a D5100 with a Nikon 18-200mm VR along with the Nikon 35mm f1.8. I’m basically shooting photos of my kids running around outside….few landscapes and our vacations. Do you think I should invests in getting the 50mm f1.4 next?

    Thank you in advance.

    • John Richardson


      That 18-200 is a 27-300 with crop factor, covers a huge range and does excellent outdoors and very well in some indoor situations with a flash.

      The 35mm for you is actually a 52.5mm with crop factor, f1.8 is fast and an excellent prime lens in many situations.

      The 50mm is a 75mm with crop factor and gains little more for light.

      I would invest in a SB700 flash, which will enhance your indoor shots greatly.

  • Doodle

    This is just the PERFECT amount and quality of analysis that a beginner needs. Just bought a D7000 and was jumping between these two lenses. Big help.

    It will be different for others, but for me, the deciding statement was that 50mm would be too long for certain shots on a DX.
    Thanks again!
    — D

  • Amit Shewale


    I have the Nikon D3000 with the Kit lens (18mm to 55mm ). If i am thinking of adding two lenses, one wide angle (35mm f1.8) for candid, travel and landscape photos and one telephoto (70 to 300mm) for sports and wildlife. Cost is a consideration.

    What do you think about my choices?


    Amit Shewale

  • Angel


    I have D5100 with 18-55mm kit lens and 70-300mm for my outdoor. I’m planning to do whole body portrait photgraphy in a 25sq room, which lens would you suggest between 35mm/1.8G and 50mm/1.8G would be good in this kind of situation?

    I’m also looking for a lens that can do bokeh.

    • Nikon Novice

      I recently got my 50mm 1.8g and love this lens. Both the 35 and 50 will give you bokeh since they both open to 1.8. Not sure if you will have room to shoot full body portrait with the 50 in a 25sq room or not. With the 50 on a DX frame you have the best part of the lens hitting the sensor and it is very sharp. When you open it up the background is creamy and to us kit lens shooters this a whole new world. Also it is so much faster than the kits and other zooms – I rarely need to use my SB600 anymore. Now I just want to buy the 35mm 1.8g and wish there was a 18 or wider prime in the same price range (wishfull thinking I guess). I like shooting the 50 wide open sometimes but mostly go to f2-3 for most shots.

  • Nikon Novice


    First off thanks for the nice informative write up. Seems a lot of us are crawling the web looking for the one answer.

    This may be over kill but just walking around with the lens on one focal length or the other just didn’t help my decision. I first took all the pictures I have ever taken with my two kit lenses 18-55VR and 55-200VR and extracted the Exif data from each and threw those values into a table (programs will probably make this easier but I actually enjoy doing it the long way). I then set anything from 30-40mm to 35 and 45-55mm to 50. Everything else got tossed into 18 or 200 depending on the side they fell. One thing I found out is I very rarely use anything over 60 or so on my 55-200. Another thing is between 35 and 50 range I’m shooting close to 50/50 :) . There were a lot of wide angle shots in the bunch but no where close to the 35 and 50 range.

    After looking at my shots I think the 50 1.8g will do nicely. I’ll always have the 18-55 for wide landscapes and group shots and as I’ve learned the 55-200 is really a rare need for me.

  • Nikon Novice

    When I said every picture I should have said every picture on the hard drive. Most bad shots get killed on the camera before they ever hit the hard drive. I also copied each group to its respective folder to review before making a decision. I also have a pretty good mix of macro, travel, day to day, candid, portrait, and landscapes.

  • Steve

    Thanks for the excellent article that explains in lay man’s terms the differnces in these two lenses. I’ve been pondering for a while which to go for and now you have made up my mind.
    Thanks again

  • Thanks

    Thanks for the helpful review. It was exactly what I was looking for!

  • Dheeraj Sharma

    Thanks for this review. It really helped alot in defining clear differences and in terms of what a laymen like me understand between the two lenses. Being mostly taking pics while I travel, I wanted something I can get wide as well while shooting portraits on portrait days :) … Thanks, I will soon buy 35mm to shoot my son’s first b’day :)

  • Des

    “more than twice less” lol, verbal jujistu. how about “less than half”.

  • wittli

    Dear Nasim,

    I just bought the new D600 and because of the lack (for now) of enough FX glass I out the 35mm/1.8 (DX) on it. To my surprise it nearly filled the whole field of view with only the very far corners being blackened out. A problem one could easily resolve in post-processing with a little cropping.
    From your point of view, stands there anything between using that lens on a FX camera if one doesn’t mind the tiny black corners?

  • Emma

    Thank you so much – I found your article very informative!

  • Nishant Rana

    Thank you for the nice and usable piece of information. It is very difficult to understand the photography for a beginners like me if it is explained in all those scientific terms. I’m glad that you explain it in such an easy and simple language. Thank you for reviewing 35mm f/1.8 as i was planning to buy it for my Nikon D7000. It’s not too costly as well as serves the purpose.

    What should i do to make sky more blue in landscape photography. I do not have a Circular Polarizer Filter?

  • Padmanabhan

    Hi Nasim,

    Based on your review I have purchased Nikon 35mm f1.8G. And to be fair, it has not disappointed me. Works great, but it does hunt for focus in dim environments, sometimes. Otherwise, am very happy with the outcome.


  • Ron Rausa

    Hi Nasim,

    Great work! I have always referred to your site for my continuous learning in photography… This review between the 35mm f/1.8 and 50mm/f1.4 is a great help… I am planning to buy my first prime lens… and my choice was between a 35mm or a 50mm… I will use it on a D5100… I am now decided to get the 35mm…

    Thanks and keep up the good work!

  • Savannah Veal

    I purchased the Nikon D3000 last year and have loved it but wanted a new lens from the start because the one that comes with it was bad in low lighting. Now I’m looking for a new one and I’m looking between the DX nikkor 35mm f/1.8G and the nikkor 50mm f/1.8G. I take mostly pictures of people and events, so I’m okay with not having zoom, I just wanted a lower aperture so the lighting would be better inside/in low lights. Any chance you could help in my decision? Thank you so much, it’s awesome how much you’re willing to help people with your knowledge!

  • Jeff Kennedy


    Thom Hogan just posted (on 9 Jan 2013) a blog entry for those users moving up from DX to FX ( In the third paragraph of his post, he states that you could use the 35mm f/1.8 lens on the D800, so long as you select the 5:4 aspect ratio for framing, instead of the 3:2 default ratio. When you get around to doing your more comprehensive test of the 35mm f/1.8 DX lens, could you also test the lens on the D800 at 5:4 and on the D4 at the 1.2x crop factor as well?? Thanks!

    FYI: I currently have both D800 and D4 bodies and (in additon to my gold ring zooms) two fast primes: the 85mm f/1.8D and the 50mm f/1.8D. I’ll be upgrading these two primes to the new AF-S f/1.8G versions, and I’m thinking about expanding my prime collection to include the 35mm f/1.8G. I like the small size and light weight of these lenses for cultural travel photography in low light settings and for portraiture. Of course, I can always rent a 35mm f/1.8G lens and test it myself, but you’ve got more software and equipment to do a proper job. ;o)

  • Jeff Kennedy

    Just did some Googling on the intertubes and found this old post from 2009:

    It would appear that using a 5:4 crop factor would nicely avoid the corner vignetting, more or less completely….

  • Mxk

    Just to report my experience with the 35mm f1.8..

    I wanted a fast lens, mainly to be able to shoot in available light and being able to control DOF in close distances. Every review of this lens is/was stellar and everyone is praising it.

    I wasted 200€. Basically it’s too wide to do any kind of portrait, unless your subject is very comfortable in front of a camera and you don’t want candids. At the same time it’s too long for general use. It is good if you want a full body portrait – of which I don’t get the point unless your subject is a glamour model. It ideally would be good to take more than one person at the same time in, and this is were my mistake was made, because with such a shallow dof you aren’t able to get more than one person in focus unless you step down – but if you step down, heck, use the 18-55 and enjoy the flexibility!

    Pro: It’s surely a lens which is able to convey emotions to the photographer.
    Cons: That emotion it conveys are frustration and delusion :(

    • Jeff Kennedy

      Thanks for your input. It was extremely helpful. I’l likely pass on the 35mm f/1.8 lens, unless I hear other reviews to the contrary. Thanks!

    • Rami

      Well 35mm is 35mm, if you find it too short for portraits or too long for general use then you need a different focal length, it’s not a fault of the lens!
      The 35mm is designed as a ‘normal’ lens to give similar angle on DX as the 50mm does on FX so that’s what you get, and you get it at a very good price! So personally I would definitely recommend it if you’re a DX shooter.

      • Mxk

        It’s a fault of the lens as in: it costs almost the same as some f2.8 17-50 zooms, with which you don’t have these problems, while offering very little more (a barely usable f1.8 – f2.8 range).

        • Rami

          The fixed aperture Nikkor zoom lens sells for over 1,500€! Over 6 times the price of the 35mm…

          Of course a zoom lens always has the advantage of versatility but if it is versatility you’re after you wouldn’t be looking at buying a prime. If you want the best of both worlds then you’ve got to be prepared to pay top prices!

          • Mxk

            Tamron 17-50 f2.8 : 100€ more than the nikkor 35mm f1.8, comparable sharpness, if not sharper.

            The problem is that most people are saying “everyone should have a 35mm f1.8 omg they are so great for everything”. Reading around it seems like this is something for everyone (untrue), awesome for low light (untrue, you are likely better serviced by a sb400), good for waist portraits (untrue, you have to get too close and you’ll distract the subject).

            I totally agree the product is a good product if you want a prime. The problem is that most opinions everywhere is saying you want one (and this in particular). My warning to every amateur like me starting out is : think twice (thrice, better), you probably don’t want it even if people in the forums say otherwise.

            • SB

              Thank you. I was thinking of buying this 35/1.8 lens as everyone praised it but now I won’t buy. I shoot with only 18-55 kit lens and for low lights, I either give long exposure or just jack up the ISO. With another lens of same focal length (as 18-55 already covers 35) I’ll be always in a dilemma which one to use and I’ll miss shots because of that. Best to shoot with a single lens and use it to its full extent than wasting money on multiple lenses and become confused.

    • Luc Poirier

      Hi Mxk
      In the old days (1974), the best portrait lens on Nikon 35 mm format was a Nikkor 105 mm f2.5, Many people like me using an F2 body were buying the 135 mm f2.8, because it was cheaper, and was keeping you farther away from your subject. At that time long lenses were considered to compress portraits (eyes, nose,ears). It was considered that the perfect portrait lens should be around 85 mm (57 mm on a DX today). Many photographers today use 200,300,400 mm lens for portrait !!!!!!. If we were using a 50 mm lens (35 mm DX format today) such as the nikkor 50 f1.4 for headshot, it was unflattering accentuating the size of the nose of the subject (fisheye effect) while compressing the width of the head, this is why we took head shoulder and waist shots only. The Nikon 35 mm f1.8G (DX) lens is excellent to take pics in general. It is the lens that should be on your DX camera most of the time, because it mimics the way your eyes see the world . The 50 mm f1.8G (DX) is an excellent portrait lens because it is the equivalent of a 75 mm lens close to the 85 mm that was considered the best for 35 mm film camera. In the old days zoom lenses were so expensive that only sponsored professionnals could afford to buy them, plus the fact that the quality was not that great compared to prime lenses.
      PS: I still have my F2 and the the Nikkor 50 f1.4, and the 135 f2.8 primes

      • SB

        If 35 mm is how eyes see the world, then you can just set 35 mm in 18-55 zoom lens and see the world in that way! Why buy another lens for that??

    • Ben

      If you don’t know how to use it, well, that’s your fault. Don’t blame the equipment.. 18-55 is an ok zoom but can’t be as sharp and as fast as the 35mm F1.8G.

  • David

    I bought the 35mm 1.8g . I really wanted a “affordable” prime. I have not used it more than a few times. I also have the 16-85 and the 70-300. I use the 16-85 for 80%+ of my shots.
    I wish I would have saved the $220 and put it towards the Tokina 11-16 2.8 that I want. It was a lot of fun to play around with the 35mm when I first got it. But my type of shooting does not lend itself to a fixed focal length where I have to move around to get the shot. My style is more.. find the perfect angle and vantage point for the subject you are shooting then zoom in or out to frame properly. I really think it comes down to that.. how do you shoot. I love shooting nature shots, and nature does not always allow the movement that a prime requires.

    From a purely fun standpoint.. playing around with the incredible DOF on the 35mm prime is fun.. but for me it never goes past playing around.

    If I did portrait work, the 35mm would be much more useful.

    my $0.02


  • Jeff Goodwin

    This lens … the Nikon AF-S 35mm F/1.8 DX is a superb lens for portrait and other shots requiring bokeh. I bought one the other day and so far I cannot complain. Great investment.

    • Luc Poirier

      HI Jeff

      Your eyes know very well to see the world around you, and they can easily pinpoint any optical errors such as distorsion, color fringing, lack of contrast , etc. seen through the eye of a camera. If you want to have a level of quality approaching your eyes you have to buy very fine optics at that focal point. Just ask yourself why NIkon sells that kit lens 18-55 mm f3.5-5.6 G for 169$cdn and at the same time they offer the 17-55 f2.8 DX IF-ED for 1329$ cdn. I personnally prefer to invest 229$ cdn in the prime that you are referring to in your comment. If you are happy with your kit lens and never print at a large size, do as you please.

      Have a nice day

  • Luc Poirier

    Sorry Jeff, my mistake my last message was for Dave.

  • Hector

    What do you think of the, now available, Nikon 50mm f/1.8G?
    It also cost around 200$, and does auto focus on entry level bodies.

  • Tim

    Thanks so much for the article. I have been trying to decide between these two lenses for a few months. This definitely sets me in the right direction.

  • saif

    Hi Nasim,
    I read ur article. and its really helpful. Im a beginner. I want to buy a nikon 3200 or 5200 camera. mostly for indoor or outdoor portrait and family picture also low light night outdoor portrait and family picture as ell. . Can u pls tell me which lens ill buy 35 mm/ f1.8g or 50mm/ f1.4 g or something els which will be good for also low night light as well.

  • Jason

    Here is my problem is anyone is interested in answering. I own the 50mm 1.4 and I really want the 35mm 1.8. I shoot on DX and I know my 50 is really 75. Many have told me “its pointless to own both”, any truth to this?

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Jason, absolutely disagree – 35mm is a much better everyday lens than the 50mm on a DX camera. The 50mm is too long to keep it on the lens at all times…

      • Jason

        Thanks! That’s all I was hearing “its pointless, just take a few steps back” but I wanted it because its a true DX lens which will give me more in my shot. I will pick up the 35mm this week. Thanks for the reply and the great write up

  • Henry

    I currently already have the 35mm, do you think it is redundant to also get the 50mm?

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Henry, it depends on what you use the lens for. For general photography, it is redundant. For portraiture, 50mm is still a better lens. In fact, if you want a good portrait lens, I would recommend something like the 85mm f/1.8G instead…

  • saif

    I read ur article. and its really helpful. Im a beginner. I want to buy a nikon 3200 or 5200 camera. mostly for indoor or outdoor portrait and family picture also low light night outdoor portrait and family picture as ell. . Can u pls tell me which lens ill buy 35 mm/ f1.8g or 50mm/ f1.4 g or something els which will be good for also low night light as well.

    Read more:

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Get the 35mm f/1.8G lens.

  • Mikhail tuknov

    Hi Nasim,

    I just purchased Nikon d7100 with 16-85 mm kin lens. I’ve been thinking of purchasing a new lens to make outdoors and in doors shots. I am not interesting in taking too many portrait photography so from reading your article I came up with a decision of getting 35 mm 1.8G lens. Now I have a question. What would you recommend – 35 mm 1.8G DX or 35 mm 1.4G? The price is not an issue for me. I simply want the best out of these 2.

    Many thanks

    • Nasim Mansurov

      Mikhail, if price is not an issue, get the new Sigma 35mm f/1.4 lens that I have just reviewed – it is currently the best 35mm lens on the market.

      • Mikhail Tuknov

        Thank you for you swift reply Nasim. If I’d like to stick with Nikon brand. What really you would recommend? 1.8 or 1.4 ( D or G) versions of 35 mm ? I simply want to know what are the cons and pros for both.

        Mikhail Tuknov

        • Jason

          He helped me as well. I own both and I must say the 35mm 1.8 is a great lens! Very sharp. Its also good for low light as well. But keep in mind, a 50mm 1.4G on a DX body is really 75mm. That said they are both great lens. Here are some of my photos with mostly 35mm and the Star Wars with a 50mm

  • Mikhail Tuknov

    Which one is better AF Nikkor 35mm f/2D or Nikon 35mm 1.8G????

  • ash

    check this video for video taken with nikon 35mm 1.8g + nikon d3100

    its worth buying 35mm 1.8 i think.

  • Orion

    Hello Nasim, I was just wondering that, Will the new Sigma 30mm f1.4g Art version perform any better than the nikkor 35mm f1.8g, regarding focul length, bokeh quality and AF-S Speed?

    BTW, Thanks for posting such a woderful Review, look forward to hear from you.

  • Meziane

    Thanks Nasim for the time you took to write all theses helpful articles.

  • pavan shah

    Halo Dear Nasim

    I own a Nikon D3200 and I am confused between 50 mm 1.8g and 35 mm 1.8g. please help me which one to go. I generally take close up photo of my Daughter,Portrait and land scape of nature. Thanks a lot for writing a good article.

  • pavan shah

    Halo Dear Nasim

    I own a Nikon D3200 and I am confused between Nikon 50 mm 1.8g and Nikon 35 mm 1.8g. please help me which one to purchase. I generally take close up photo of my Daughter,Portrait and landscape of nature. Thanks a lot for writing a good article.

  • Tirza

    Hi Nasim,

    Thanks for this article!!

    I am shooting with a Sigma 50mm 1.4 on a D5100.
    Not always the sharpest combination.

    In terms of sharpness, would you recommend I get the Nikon 35mm 1.8 or the 50mm 1.8 in addition to what I have now?

    35mm would give me just a slightly wider angle. But then again, I just want the sharpest of the two. Is that the 35mm 1.8 or the 50mm 1.8? Or are they just as sharp?

  • Abhijeet

    Halo Nasim,

    You said that with 35mm f1.8G you have to be closer to the subject for better results compared to the 50mm f1.4. I saw a friend take brilliant indoor photographs in yellow lamp-light with her subjects around 4-5 feet away. Could you guide me as to which lens would be the best for such shots.


  • Kavin

    hello nasim,
    i love ur webpage a lot.i used to read lot of reviews .iam looking for a good prime lens for my nikon d3200.right now iam holding 18-55 and tamron 70-300.i love prime and i wanna buy one.but iam confused between 35 1.8g and 50 1.8g.since d3200 doesnot have inbuilt AF motor my friends are asking me to get 35.but i love bokeh effect in usage will be family portraits,outdoor and low light.could u pl suggest.thanks.

  • atul

    Hello Nasim,
    Thank you for the excellent comparison between 35mm f/1.8g and 50mm f/1.4g lenses. I can very well say that because the way you portrayed the comparison I have made a correct choice of buying the 35mm f/1.8g for my D5000. Thank you again.

  • JMP

    Thank you ever so much! I’ve owned the 35mm lens for a little over a year now and I thought about upgrading to 50mm only because of the larger aperture,but after reading your review I think I’ll stick ti my 35mm for a little longer as I have a cropped sensor DSLR.

    • JMP

      I forgot to add, I was just about to list my 35mm lens on eBay to sell when I found your blog, so you kinda saved my little buddy:) Thanks Man!

      • Luc Poirier

        HI JMP
        they are completely different lenses on your DX. As Nasim mentionned the 35 mm is a 52.5mm seen by your DX camera . The angle of view is more like your eyesight. The 35 mm is not a lens to take head shots, because it will distort the face of your subject showing a prominent nose at close range. The 50mm F1.4 is showing the pic like if it was a 75mm lens on a 35mm camera. This lens is a telephoto lens much more suitable to take close portrait such as head shots. So choosing one over the other because of the aperture is not the way to look at them. On an FX camera the 35 mm is a wide-angle and the 50 mm is a normal lens. To make headshots you would have to buy a lens over 75mm such as an 85 mm F1.8

  • Rabs

    Hi Nasim

    Very good review indeed. I am using 18-200 lens with my D7100. The range I get with the lens is quite handy but sometimes, when taking portrait, I cannot make the background go blur. I am considering getting a prime lens for portrait and low light shots. With my current 18-200mm lens, low light shots at high iso usually ends up bit too noisy and not that sharp. Would you suggest 35mm over 50mm?


  • grace


    I have Nikon D60 here, since there is a new 50mm f1/8 G which is an auto focus lens, what should I really buy? The 35mm f1.8 G or the 50MM f1.8 G?

    Please reply to my email or here,

    Thanks a lot. I am really planning to buy a new lens for my d60.

  • Soumitra Bandyopadhyaya

    I am new to digital photography. I bought a Nikon D5200 with the 18-110 kit lens. The dealer suggested that I also buy a Nikon 35mm f/1.8G for taking portraits. But I am unable to get the bokeh. What camera settings should I use.

  • Siddharth

    Fabulous article – thanks mate. I was going crazy deciding between 35mm f/1.8g or 50mm f/1.8g for my Nikon D3200. I have made up my mind, 35mm it is. Thanks a lot again.

  • Subair

    At last an article that helped decide on a prime! Thank you so much.

  • Ferdinand

    Finally now i know which one to get for my d3100. Thank you.

  • nick

    i have 1 Q; if i use the 50mm f1.4 on a dx body – understood that if would give me effect of 75mm length – what about the f number – coz for dx sensor wont the opening be wider than f1.4? if yes by how manystops 1 or 2

  • vinay

    Amazing write up and excellent comparison between the lenses. I have a small question but it may look silly..
    Why is there a huge cost difference between a lens with f1.8 to f1.4 aperture? is that because of its complexity in making it or just because of the increase in quality/ effeciency at f1.4 than in f1.8?

  • Seb

    Thank You.

    Nice articel.

    Greets from Ger

  • Tony m

    Iam still tore between 35mm f/1.8g or 50mm f/1.4g
    If money is no object on this two
    Which one u choose?
    Currently i have d7100 with 18-200 vr (1st gen)
    Love to picture indoor, low light and concert
    Which one i should get

  • Jeremy Rogers

    Hi, I owe the d3200 and I’m still wondering which one these two to get. I personally do a lot of landscape photography and some family portraits, I also wanted to know if these lenses are good for night/lowlight photography.

  • Keith R. Starkey

    Hey Jeremy,

    First, I am pretty new to the photography scene, but I’ve been studying my rear end off like it’s nobody’s business for the last three and a half months! Here’s what I’ve learned about this issue.

    I will be purchasing a D3200 in about a week or so, and after all the research I’ve done, the 35mm would seem, overall, to be the better all-around choice (I am definitely getting one myself). Why? Two reasons:

    First, the crop factor of the DX format will give the 35mm on a D3200 the equivalent of about 52mm, which, there you go, is your 50mm!

    Second, if, however, you use a standard 50mm instead of the 35mm DX—there is no 50mm prime lens for the DX format that I am aware of—the full-format will work but isn’t optimized for a DX sensor (which may affect the final photo product). Additionally, because of the crop factor, the 50mm will put you at a fixed (approximately) 75mm or so equivalency. That, as many I have read say, makes it more difficult to get the wider shots you may want, particularly for group portraits (and maybe even landscapes); you’re out of the range, so to speak, of the “nifty-fifty” perspective that is so around-the-town of a lens.

    So, for me, I’m going with the 35mm. The 35mm for the DX format seems to be a good over-all usable lens. It will work in most any situation, taking into consideration, of course, it’s limitations. I’m not worried about those, because as time goes on I’ll get lenses for particular purposes.

    Now, I am looking at a used 50mm AF-D (no autofocus ability on the D3200) just so that I can play around with it on the D3200. It’s used, cheap, but a good lens. Here’s the deal, though: the D3200 comes with the kit 18-55mm, which, with the full extension, gives me what a full format 50mm will give me (again, about 75mm). So since I don’t want to waste my money on that 50mm lens, which will only duplicate, so to speak, the kit lens at 55mm, I’m going to first see what feel is of about 75mm using the kit lens and then I’ll make the decision about the 50mm AF-D. If I like shooting at 75mm, then I’ll get the 50mm lens—it will produce far better results than the kit, and that’s really the only reason, at the price, I’m considering it.

    Anyway, I hope this helps,


    All that I’ve read so

    • jeremy Rogers

      Thanks a lot for the comment, I found it very helpful :)
      You think it would have been a better idea if I had bought the body by its self and then have gotten the 35mm lens instead of buying the camera with the kit lens?

      • keith R. Starkey

        Jeremy (sorry, I called you Jerry before!),

        No, the body by itself isn’t worth the price, in my opinion, to skip the kit lens. That lens will do fine because it covers enough range for “all-around” shooting. I thought about doing the same thing (skipping the lens and finding something else), but, again, after researching, the kit lens is not a bad lens (I’ve seen some good stuff from it!), and I’m looking forward to the flexibility it offers.

        That 35mm f/1.8G AF-S is a NICE lens to have just in and of itself, no matter what other lenses you have. It will put you, as I noted above, at about the 52mm range, which is that good all-around range. But the kit lens allows you to go wider, to about 27mm, which, at that range is nice for landscape, group portrait (especially when the background is important), and some street photography. So it’s a flexible lens, albeit if it’s not the best on the market.

        I’m really looking forward to getting the D320o, and I’m still debating about whether I should put out a $100 for the 50mm f/1.8D AF, which, as I noted above, will not focus automatically on the D32oo, but man, it’s a killer lens, a good ‘ol standby, and a nice workhorse that produces beautiful stuff. It will put me at the 75mm range, which is too far out for getting wide (like the 18-55mm at 18) and yet not far enough out to do what some call the standard portrait range (70-200mm). So, it’s kind of an odd-ball in that regard, but, again, there’s a lot to do with it and have fun with it…for $100 bucks!

        Well, take care, and I hope this helps as well,


        • Keith R. Starkey

          Man, I am just blowing it these days! I said, “But the kit lens allows you to go wider, to about 27mm, which, at that range is nice for landscape . . . ” Sorry! That 27mm should read 75mm!

  • Keith R. Starkey

    Oh, and the 35mm, Jerry, will do well in low light, with a f/1.8 aperture ability. Little problem from what I’ve read for low-light shooting.

  • Keith R. Starkey

    Re-reading my post, I just realized I boo-booed! I said, “Here’s the deal, though: the D3200 comes with the kit 18-55mm, which, with the full extension, gives me what a full format 50mm will give me (again, about 75mm),” but this should have read that the 18-55mm will give me a 50mm equivalency and then some (up to and about 75mm).

    Sorry about that,


  • jeremy

    Thanks for you opinion, I found it helpful. But don’t you think that the prime lens would be be better for landscape photography especially in low light since the widest aperture is 1.8 and on the kit lens the widest is 3.5 and when you zoom in the aperture increase which let’s even less light in. For example on the kit lens at 18mm the aperture is 3.5 but at 24mm its 4.0

  • Keith R. Starkey

    Hey Jeremy,

    First, let me be clear: what I’ve stated in my posts is not from experience but from what others have said, a consensus about the 35mm and the kit lens. So, it’s not been my opinion as it has been my research. I don’t want to mislead here at all.

    As to landscape-specific shooting in low light conditions, you may find that the kit lens will work well in low light, particularly if you up the ISO, which, though, with a super high megapixel sensor you’re likely to get noise early on, but not a big problem if you’re not going to print huge pictures. You won’t know until you try.

    But think about it. The kit lens wide open puts you at about 27mm; the 35mm puts you at about 52mm. Which is going to give you the wider shot for landscape shooting (if you need the width)? The 35mm. If low light, however, is a real issue, only by testing will you see which lens gives better results. I’d imagine the 35mm would do so (because, yes, of the lower aperture), but using other tricks of the trade may make that kit lens worth something in those cases. (Hey, you can always rent a few of those spot lights that they put in front of stores, at which even God says, “Man, that thing is bright!”)

    As to all-around shooting in low light, the 35mm wil rock (another good reason I want it). That said, though, maybe someone who’s been there / done that with the D3200 can chime in on this issue.

    (Just saw that my local Wallyworl…ahem, I mean Wal-Mart, has the D3200 available. It’s mine as soon as the tax money comes in!!)


  • Ambal

    One of the best and easy guidelines to follow, it was very useful on my lens purchase.

    Thanks a lot…

  • Ivan Temelkov

    Hi, Nasim!

    First I would like to thank you for your articles!
    I’m searching for an inexpensive prime lense which should help me pass from DX to FX body. Til now I used a Nikon D60 with the kit lense, so I can’t tell I have much experience.
    I would like to find a lense which I could use et first with my D60 but I would like to still be able to use it with a FX body when I buy one.
    My google research left me more confused then I was at first. What would be your advice?
    Most of the photoes I do are landscapes, nature and places I visit.
    Please excuse me if this is not the proper place to make my question but the comparison between 35/1.8 and 50/1.4 is a good starting point for me.
    Once again thanks a lot!

  • Mal Collins

    Recently purchased a Nikon D3200,I have quite a few different lenses to suit,but never seemed sharp enough. I read an article online referring to the Nikkor 35mm 1/8f DX lens,the person said it never comes off his camera.
    Well I purchased one,the best buy ever,tack sharp and very quick,my other lenses will stay with the D70s,the 35mm will remain on the D3200. It is a great lens.

  • Nisha

    Hi Nasim,
    Today I just came across ur blog..Its very useful.Thanks for u. I need an information,Kindly answer if possible..I want to buy d5200,it comes with kit lens18-140.. In case of prime,which is best.. I have dilemma..For Child,landscape photos,35mm 1.8G or 50mm 1.8G or 50mm1.4..

  • Ripu

    Hello Nasim

    Thank you very much for a nicely written review. I wanted to decide whether to go for 35mm or 50mm lens and came to the right place. One question: I have a D3100. Would 35mm lens autofocus on that?



  • jeremy rogers

    I own both the 35mm and 50mm and have the Nikon d3100 they both autofocus on the camera.

  • sneha

    hello Nasim ji

    is Nikon 5200 with 35 mm good combination for general purpose ?

    • Subhro

      Sneha ji,


      Nikon D-5200 would work great with 35mm potrait lens. You could click those ‘Wow’ pics without any hassles.
      So go ahead and happy clicking!

  • kotz

    I recently bought nikon d5200 with 18-55mm lens. I want to upgrade my lens, my preferred lens will be nikkor 18-140mm, 55-300mm and third party lens tamron 18-270mm pzd. Which one will be better choice for me?
    My priority is not for longer focal length, its the sharper and better image quality.

  • Mariana

    Hi, what about concert photography. Which of both lenses would you recommend me for taking pictures of concerts. I have a Nikon D3100.


  • Laurie Rose

    What a great post :)

    As someone who hasn’t got a clue about photography but knows the sort of images I want to achieve this really helped make a decision.

    Thanks :)

  • Ahmed

    I am a beginner and I have Nikon D5200. I am looking for a prime lens. Should I go for 35mm 1.8 G or 50mm 1.4 D ? Moreover, I do not understand much when you say 35mm is equal to 52mm on a DX body. I currently have a kit lens (18-55mm). Does this mean that 35mm 1.8 G would be equal to the frame size when I move my kit lens to almost 52mm? Or it would be equal to the frame size of 35mm of my kit lens?

  • Shaan Sundar

    Hi Nasim

    Your page is just tremendous
    Too much of skills
    I would steal your brain rather than lenses…
    Thank you anyways for your enhanced reviews

    I keep reading your page regularly

  • Vitaliy Karpenko

    Hello Nasim,

    Have you or anyone one here has tried this lens 35mm f1.8G DX in video mode,??? i shoot pics alittle here and there since i have a Nikon D5200 DSLR and has both stills and video. But my biggest question is how will this lens work with autofocus in VIDEO mode. I will buy it regardles cause i need a prime lense anyways, i did however try the Nikon 35mm f1.8G ED modle and video autofocus worked pretty good, but that lens is like $600 and the Nikon 35mm f1.8G DX is $200 see the difference alot of money when your not a pro. So please let me know thank you!

    • Ahmed Shah

      I also have Nikon D5200. This camera does not have a built in auto focus motor. So you need to purchase a lens having a built in auto focus motor. Coming to your point, I have used 50mm 1.8G in video mode. You need to switch to Live view, and start shooting. You can autofocus any object by pressing the same button halfway you use for taking pictures. However, I would suggest that you switch your lens to manual focus while shooting by moving the button on the lens. If you autofocus during video mode by pressing the button halfway, the motor makes a ‘Grrrrrr’ sound which would be recoded in the video. If you focus manually by moving focus ring, no sound would be produced.

      Have a nice day!

  • Vitaliy Karpenko

    Thank you. I’ll find out very soon when I buy the prime lense.

  • sahil garg

    Hey Nasim,

    I am really glad to find your web page. Solves my many questions.

    I am planning to buy a Nikon D750. Please suggest me which two lenses to purchase for my Full Frame Nikon. As I don’t wanna carry more than 2 lenses on my vacations. I would like to carry one day lens and one low light performance lens.

    Is the lens supplied with Nikon D750 kit i.e. 24-120mm F 4G a good lens for Day purposes.

  • Juan

    Thanks for the post, really helpfull and consist!

  • ReadTHEreview

    WTF is wrong with all of you asking the same shit, he already told you in the review for a DX camera get the 3500 1.8!

  • Amynta

    Thank you!