Nikon 50mm f 1.2 ai s

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Nikon 50mm f/1.2 AI-S

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The Nikon 50mm f/1.2 AI-S

First, this is not the standard Nikon f/1.4 or 1.4G lens. The 50mm f/1.2 is an older design but still produced manual-focus-only lens. It will auto meter on D3s, D3x, and D800 bodies, but will require manual metering on older bodies. This is a specialty lens, and honestly, if you don’t know about this lens you probably don’t want it.

This lens is valued because a) it is the only f/1.2 prime lens readily available for Nikon, and b) at f/2 it is supposedly the sharpest prime lens Nikon has ever made. It also is renowned for the 18 point stars it creates around light sources when shot stopped down for night photography.

Roger's Take

This is very much a specialty lens, but if you don’t mind manually focusing it's spectacular. Of all the 50mm lenses, the images I get with this are the ones I like the most, especially night shots. However, it can be finicky to focus and you’re going to miss some shots with it. It also doesn’t behave all that well in bright sunlight, having a tendency, like most older lens designs, to flare.

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