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Nikon 50mm and 58mm Bokeh Comparison
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December 2013   Nikon Reviews   Nikon Lenses    All Reviews

Nikon claims the newest 58mm f/1.4 G has great bokeh. Well, so does the 50mm f/1.4 G, so let's pull these out, as well as the original 58mm f/1.4 from 1959, a real 58mm f/1.2 NOCT and an 85mm f/1.8 AF-D and see what happens.


The Contenders

Nikon 58mm f/1.4 G

Nikon 58mm f/1.4 G

2013-today, 72mm plastic filter thread, 382g, $1,700.

Nikon 50mm f/1.4 G

Nikon 50mm f/1.4 G

2008-today, 58mm plastic filter thread, 278g, $440.

Nikon 58mm f/1.4 F

Nikon 58mm f/1.4 F

1959-1962, 52mm metal filter thread, 350g, about $250 used.

Nikon 85mm f/1.8 D

Nikon AF 85mm f/1.8 D

1987-today, 62mm metal filter thread, 366g, $460.

Nikon 58mm f/1.2 NOCT

Nikon 58mm f/1.2 Noct-NIKKOR

1977-1997, 52mm metal filter thread, 470g, about $3,000 used.


The Results (click any image for the © Camera-original file)

Nikon 58mm f/1.4 G

Nikon 58mm f/1.4 G

Nikon 58mm f/1.4 G

Nikon 58mm f/1.4 G

Nikon 58mm f/1.4 G


Recommendations         top

The 58mm f/1.4 G has swell bokeh, but not that much different from the 50mm f/1.4 G for a fraction of the price. Likewise, the original 58mm f/1.4 F from 1959 isn't that much different.

For fun, I threw in an 85mm f/1.8 AF-D, since focal length has more to do with bokeh than aperture, and as expected, the slower 85mm lens has bokeh at least as good as the 58mm f/1.4 G, again for a fraction of the price.

By the time I got the NOCT mounted, the sun had come out and makes it difficult to compare here. Its bokeh looks at least as good as any of the others.

If you look closely (you may click any of these for the camera-original file), you'll notice that the blur circles are smooth for the spherical lenses, but have rings in the images form the two aspherical lenses. This is from the way that the aspherical lenses are made; they are only approximating their desired aspheres.


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Technik         top

I shot everything wide-open hand-held on a Nikon Df.

I moved in or out to keep the subject, the snowman, the same size.

Focus was usually on the snowman's eye. Don't be trying to analyze relative sharpness because the gift and green ribbon weren't always in focus on each sample. If it's not sharp, it's probably because it's not in focus.


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Mr. & Mrs. Ken Rockwell, Ryan and Katie.


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