Yesterday Nikon released the AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G lens. It’s a fixed focal length lens. That means there’s no zoom. Because there’s no zoom, that means the lens body is more shallow allowing for a better maximum aperture.
And get this. Its maximum aperture is f/1.8. Sweet shallow depth of field beauty! I’m stunned.
What’s this mean to joe six-pack consumer SLR user? It saves your butt in low-light situations. You can more easily avoid noisy higher ISOs with this bahama mamma. And you can get some fantastic limited depth of field shots (what you focus on is sharp and the area in the shot further from the focal point will be more blurred).
So if you’re out shooting somewhere and really aren’t happy bumping up your ISO because it’s too dark, then you could consider whipping out this bad boy. It’s a small lens that can be easily squeezed into a camera bag. Or you find an awesome shot, but don’t like something in the background, then this lens will do the most to blur out that background.
The standard lens on my SLR is the Nikkor AF 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5D IF. I can only shoot a max of f/4.2. (The name of the lens suggests it can do 3.5, but I’ve never been able to get it to 3.5). There’s a big difference between f/1.8 and f/4.2.
I forgot what a common max aperture for a standard point-and-shoot digital camera is. So I grabbed my wife’s Canon PowerShot SD500 Digital Elph (gotta love the Elph series for point-and-shoot). I was shocked to see its max aperture is f/2.8. That totally kicks the butt of my Nikkor AF 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5D IF. Hmph.