japhoto's reviews

  • Nikon 24mm f/1.4G ED AF-S Nikkor

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    f/1.4, sharp*, gorgeous bokeh, unusually thick lens hood, solid build, great feeling MF ring.
    *sharpness at f/1.4 is a little overhyped, AF sometimes is slightly inconsistent, CA regardless of aperture.

    This lens is a little overhyped. I've used the Canon 24mm f/1.4L II, and the Nikon is really only slightly better in some aspects as seen in the post below. I wouldn't switch systems for this lens.

    The reason you buy this lens is for the f/1.4. I do alot of night photography so the wide aperture works wonders as far as seeing what you're doing at 2am outside the city.

    When using the lens for portraits, the wide aperture, character of the bokeh, and pattern in the vignetting is really phenomenal, and dramatically changes the overall look of the image. this is going to be my environmental portrait lens no doubt.

    As far as the AF problems, i haven't really run into any that i would say are objectionable. There have been a few times when the focus has been slightly off in situations where it shouldn't be, but f/1.4 lenses are much more difficult for AF systems to work with as opposed to f/4 or f/2.8 lenses, everyone knows this.

    As far as overall sharpness, at anything tighter than f/2.8, the lens is generally perfect for most uses, except for the extreme extreme corners, which don't really matter anyway in real photography. Sharpness at f/1.4 is good for a fast wide angle prime (especially when compared to the sigma 20,24, and 28 1.8's), but it's noting to really write home to mom about. It's pretty similar to the Canon 24 f/1.4L II. It's good, but it's not perfect by any stretch, there is still lots of coma, lots of fringing and aberrations, and pretty much only resolves the D3(s)/D700 in the center of the frame when shot at f/1.4. wide open and at f/2 the sides and borders are OK. at f/2.8-16, it's awesome and leaves little to be desired. Typical wide aperture prime.

    Color resembles the 50mm f/1.4G when shot wide open, could be a good or bad thing. It's a little warm in the center, cooler in the corners. Not alot, but on a brick wall you'll see it. otherwise it's a non issue.

    There is CA in the peripheral of the frame at every aperture. It's generally trivial to remove.

    Overall I think it's a great lens, worth it for $1700, $2200 is a little much.

    For an example of what i'm talking about using this lens at night: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mrmeeker/4698673239/

    reviewed August 1st, 2010 (purchased for $1,700)