NIKKOR 50mm f/1.2
I've always wanted to own an f1.2 lens and I don't mind if it's manual focus for the sole purpose of shooting candid portraits in low light situation without the option of speedlights. I've spent days trying to mine this lens and finally after all the searching, I finally found a very mint one. The build quality is superb. It is rock solid and sure it's gonna last for years. It looks like the crystal clear glass and high grade metal body are both machined out from Nikon's factory to be a classic masterpiece lens. Shooting portraits at its widest aperture of f1.2 produces stunning, dreamy, soft, heavenly and ethereal looking photos I've seen so far. That is what the flavour of the lens offers. One of my friends said that my portraits look classic as the one she saw in Time and Life magazines.=) what a nice compliment....
I don't really recommend using this lens on a bright and sunny condition since modern DSLR's CMOS & CCD sensors are highly reflective and sensitive to light and to this bright lens leaving you overexpose images. Use this lens indoors, on overcast days, early morning and late afternoon shots and you'll be astounded by its capabilities. Highly recommended for normal lens shooting. It's not intimidating on streets photography as well thus subjects will appear calm and relax.
May 15, 2012
great build quality that's why i love nikkor manual focus lens, and I was surprised with the performance of this lens at F 1.2, its sharp! stopped down from F/2 this lens produces stunning picture quality.
and i love F/ 1.2 aperture its give me extra speed in dim light.
February 11, 2012
Control and Range
This is the most beautiful lens Nikon makes and it is made in Japan. It is ruggedly constructed and immaculately finished.
It is as much fun as a perspective lens and its phenomenal control over depth of field lets you do things no other lens can. Isolating subjects in streetscapes, night shooting and in half-lit indoor situations you do not need a flash at the widest apertures. I use it with a D700 or an FM10 and its performance is always stellar. Portraiture at wide apertures is stunning and the bokeh is very unobtrusive and pleasing. The difference between this and my previous 1.4 and 1.8f 50mm lenses is phenomenal - this is another beast all together. The manual focus is extraordinarily smooth and precise.
June 25, 2011
A Lengendary Lens
This is one of the best normal lens ever built by Nikon. It is one of the sharpest 50mm at f/2.0, sharper than 50mm f1.4 or f/1.8. It does, however, have more distortion compared to the 50mm f1.8 AFD. You need a really good camera with focus accuracy. Nikon D300 will not focus very well at f1.2. Nikon D700 is ok. Very useful in low light situation. It's too bad that they do not offer an autofocus version.
April 15, 2011
Excellent Standard Lens
The 50mm 1.2 MF Nikkor is an ultra-fast standard focal length lens that can produce very sharp images with pleasing out of focus rendition. When used wide-open, images have a unique look that's impossible to obtain with any other lens. Although manual focus, it's easy to focus when used with my Nikon D700. The 50mm 1.2 MF Nikkor is extremely well-built. Nikkor MF lenses are constructed to last a lifetime.
April 14, 2011
Anything you shoot with this looks great!
After hearing how sharp the 50mm lenses were I picked up up a 1.8 I found it wasnt that great. I decided to go up to the 1.2 and what a difference! the build is fantastic no cheap plastic, this is a real lens! Its able to capture subtle light tones better than any lens ive seen, well worth the price if you use ith with a full fame body
April 14, 2011
Excellent Manual Focus Lens
I bought this lens in 1979, have been using it since then with great results in almost any shooting situation on my old FE & on my D300s once in a while. I think it to be a great all around lens & will not part with it for anything. 31 years of pictures is too long to fit here but I used it for: low light/landscape/seascapes/sports of all kinds/weddings/portraits/kids/animals/air shows & snow storms all with great results ending in irreplaceable memories saved for eternity!!
December 31, 2010
Fantastic Portrait Lens for Newer Nikon DSLRs!
I purchased this lens back in March because I "needed" an f/1.2 lens. I've been eyeing this one for a while. I found it used for a price I could not pass up.
If you're used to shooting AF, it will take a while to get used to this lens. The in-focus indicator (found on modern cameras) does work with this lens and you have to almost totally rely on it. When shooting wide upen, the DoF is so shallow that it is nearly impossible to just eyeball the focus--which is ok. Contrary to one of the previous reviews, I shoot this lens with a D300 and I have had no noticable chromatic aberration but that is probably because it is a newer DSLR with better image processing.
I'm currently taking a portrait/fashion photography class and this is the lens I use 95% of the time as is perfect for what we do. My instructor has even commented about the quality of images coming from this glass. The bokeh (wide-open), contrast and sharpness of this lens (stopped-down) are fantastic. The ONLY other thing I could ask for is AF, but that's only because I've only ever shot AF up until I bought this lens and I've been spoiled.
As for the handling, this appears to be a very solid lens. It's a little heavy for 50mm but that's only because it's got a lot of serious glass inside. The focus ring feels great and is very smooth. I wish the AF lenses felt this good when operating manually. The aperture ring is ok. Since this is an all-manual lens, with aperture increments in 1 stop, it makes it a little difficult to precisely stop down at 1/3 stop increments. I'm sure this isn't an issue for those who are used to shooting with older, all manual lenses, however.
In conclusion, if I had to give up all but one of my lenses, I would probably keep this one. If you could only have one prime, this should be it.
October 25, 2010
This lens is very close to perfection . .
To be honest, I bought it cause I love 50mm lenses, and always admiring Leica 50mm lenses . . so this one is somehow close to Leica in built quality as it's metallic.
The only drawback is that the focus ring is rubber . . it'll be amazing if it's fully metallic like Leica lenses . .
Image quality is superb . . focusing on 1.2 is difficult sometimes . .
Bokeh, it's a master in it . .
September 26, 2010
Best Bokeh you can get.
I have owned this lens for a while and like it for low light, beautiful Bokeh, hand held candid shots. I use the 1.4 for everyday use.
Originally purchased for my film Nikon's, I also use it on my DSLR, especially for difficult focus and low light shoots. Beets the AF lens by a mile.
July 30, 2010
Sharp images, bright view finder, excellent build
very good manual focus lens ever used. Does not focus well at f/1.2 and f/1.4 but I still like the glowing appearance of subject in image at these apertures. I use it both on D300, FM2n and F100. This lens is a build quality paradigm, manual focus is smooth.
October 13, 2011
Great Lens on Film
Great lens using film and love using with my Nikon FM2 camera, I love using these gears together.
Not recommended on digital cameras due to chromatic aberration,Take advantage of f/1.2 limited depth of field with care
July 30, 2010