Nikon AF-S 50mm f/1.4 G Lens

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Gold Award
With this lens Nikon has produced perhaps the best-balanced full-frame fast 50mm autofocus prime we've yet seen.”

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Key Features

  • 50mm focal length
  • 75mm equivalent focal length on DX cameras
  • F1.4 maximum aperture; F16 minimum
  • Ultrasonic-type AF motor with full-time manual focusing
  • 58mm filters
  • 0.45m/17.72" minimum focus
  • Nikon F mount for FX and DX DSLRs

Product Description

The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.4G is a small and compact, high-quality standard prime lens for Nikon's FX (full frame) and DX (APS-C) DSLRs. A standard prime is one of the best purchases you can make for a DSLR system - the classic 50mm focal length is amazingly versatile, and typically offers extremely good optical quality for a relatively low cost. The Nikon 50mm F1.4 G is no exception. A lightweight, tack-sharp standard lens on full-frame DSLRs, it offers an effective focal length of 75mm on Nikon's DX format, making it very useful for portraiture and low-light candid photograph. Compared to the older AF-D version, this new lens is optically superior, and offers silent (although slower) autofocus.

Specs

Principal specifications
Lens type Prime lens
Max Format size 35mm FF
Focal length 50 mm
Image stabilisation No
Lens mount Nikon F (FX)
Aperture
Maximum aperture F1.4
Minimum aperture F16.0
Aperture ring No
Number of diaphragm blades 9
Aperture notes rounded blades
Optics
Elements 8
Groups 7
Focus
Minimum focus 0.45 m (17.72)
Maximum magnification 0.15×
Autofocus Yes
Motor type Ring-type ultrasonic
Full time manual Yes
Focus method Unit
Distance scale Yes
DoF scale Yes
Physical
Weight 290 g (0.64 lb)
Diameter 74 mm (2.89)
Length 54 mm (2.13)
Materials Plastic barrel, metal mount
Sealing No
Colour Black
Filter thread 58 mm
Hood supplied Yes
Hood product code HB-47
Tripod collar No

Reviews

DPReview Conclusion

Scoring is relative only to the other lenses in the same category at the time of review.

Score Breakdown
Poor Excellent
Build Quality
Ergonomics and Handling
Features
Image Quality
Value
Gold Award
Gold Award

This sharp 50mm isn't quite a match for the best of its competitors at F1.4, but it's still perfectly usable wide open, and once stopped down to F2.8 it's more than a match for anything else in its class. When used on full-frame, it produces some of the most detailed, aberration-free images we've yet seen, and our test results suggest there's still plenty to spare for even higher resolution sensors. It's very good on DX too, and an attractive option as a short portrait lens.

Good For

Everyday photography on full-frame and portrait work on APS-C, where its excellent sharpness and refined handling are very useful.

Not So Good For

Shooting fast-moving subjects, where the AF-S focus might not be quick enough, and shooting into the sun, where (as usual with lenses of this type) flare can be an issue.

User Reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars
  • Martyn McMad, Apr 21, 2012 GMT:
    Love this Lens

    The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.4G is probably my favourite lens, replacing my previous favourite lens, the Nikon AF 50mm f/1.8 D, only recently. The AF is not as quick on the 1.4G as it is on the 1.8D, but it is so much quieter ! I love shooting at f/1.4 to 2.8 where this lens looks its most gorgeous, in my opinion. It's great as a portrait lens on an APS-C sensor DSLR like my D300 where it becomes a 75mm due to the DX sensor. It's not as sharp as the AF-S 50mm f/1.8 G, which it looks very ...

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  • Franklin J Ellias, Jun 20, 2013 GMT:
    WOW!

    New to Nikon, not new to DSLRs or film. I just purchased a Nikon d7100 to replace my Canon 2ti. I also purchased two lenses one is the 50mm f/1.4G. After "playing" with the camera and lens for 6 days and looking at the results all I can write is WOW! This lens is more than I expected. I know it was highly rated by various reviews, including DPR, I just was blown away by the detail and the color balance achieved by this lens. At 75mm I can see why it has become a favorite portrait lens of many ...

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  • vijaynov, Mar 15, 2014 GMT:
    very fast contrary to what you many read

    This lens is so fast focusing that you need scientific methods to compare it with the f/1.8 really. I do find the Nikon 50mm f/1.4 G markedly better than Nikon 50mm f/1.8 G. focusing speed is so fast that if it was faster i wouldn't be able to notice the extra speed :) And i don't believe in focusing with lens cap on, that's crazy and no one does it, even if u got instant focus with the lens covered it means bunk because u wont get an image!! I did a real life test here http://youtu.be/NxWXbw ...

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Nikon AF-S 50mm f/1.4 G Lens by DPReview

Questions & Answers

QUESTION

D800: what lenses?

Hello Everyone, I am new on the forum. I recently saved up enough to upgrade from DX to FX adding a couple high quality lenses. After many months during which I was unsure between D600,D800 and 5dMkIII, my heart finally chose the D800. I previously had a Canon Dx so I'll have to buy lenses as well. Now, I do a lote of portraiting, architecture, naturalistic, and Safari. Eventually I do Fashion, Macro, Still life and photo reportage. Extremely rarely I do sports. My budget sits around 4500 euros which should be about 6k $. I will spend around 2500 dollars for the camera which leaves me with 3500 for optics. Now, I thought buying a 14-24 and a 70-200 would be enough, i also have a really old 35-135 af that should work just fine and i could have a 50mm or a 35-70mm for low price from a friend. What do you think of these choices? should i prefer a 24-70 to any other? P.s. I only am considering Nikkor lenses, if you have other suggestions feel free!!

Enrifan asked
8 months ago

ANSWERS

Enrifan wrote: Hello Everyone, I am new on the forum. I recently saved up enough to upgrade from DX to FX adding a couple high quality lenses. After many months during which I was unsure between D600,D800 and 5dMkIII, my heart finally chose the D800. I previously had a Canon Dx so I'll have to buy lenses as well. Now, I do a lote of portraiting, architecture, naturalistic, and Safari. Eventually I do Fashion, Macro, Still life and photo reportage. Extremely rarely I do sports. My budget sits around 4500 euros which should be about 6k $. I will spend around 2500 dollars for the camera which leaves me with 3500 for optics. Now, I thought buying a 14-24 and a 70-200 would be enough, i also have a really old 35-135 af that should work just fine and i could have a 50mm or a 35-70mm for low price from a friend. What do you think of these choices? should i prefer a 24-70 to any other? P.s. I only am considering Nikkor lenses, if you have other suggestions feel free!! Hi Enrifan, For ... Continue Reading

M Lammerse answered
8 months ago

It is difficult to advise someone on what to spend large amounts of money on when there are so many factors involved. Thankfully, you have at least laid out some of the shooting situations you would like to cover. However, large ticket items like the 14-24 and 70-200 should not be purchased simply on their reputation as excellent lenses because each has their strong and weak points that can work for you and against you if you do not understand them. Gaining a good understanding of these quirks takes time, so this is why I am not a big fan of simply pouring money for glass and sorting it all out later. I find Lloyd Chambers' website an excellent resource to understand all of these nuances and his testing is quite extensive. Reading those tests will better arm you for the adventure ahead and give you a much better chance of enjoying each step. However, you can make some low budget purchases that will at least let you get started. The Nikkor 50mm f/1.8D is an absolute steal at $130. It ... Continue Reading

user_name answered
8 months ago

Thank you very much for your answer! I pretty much share all you have said. Luckily i didn't just wake up last week thinking about throwing 6k in something I never tried! I have been using a 3ds for one year with the 14-24,24-70,70-200 and 200-400. Unfortunately this equipment is not mine, nor do I have the economic possibilities of purchasing all those lenses. During this period I fell in love with the 14-24, I think it may be the best lense I ever tried. Of the lenses you suggested I only have experience with the 50mm Nikkor. It's not my favorit in that range and many friends have told me it's not exceptionally sharp on the D800, but I think that with a 50 and a 35-135 I might cover the range well enough. While if I buy the 24-70 and set apart the 70-200 I would have nothing on the long range. I know 200 on FX is not "long", but conisdering you can shoot on Dx keeping realy high resolution I find it a good solution. Back to your suggestions, do you really think that investing on ... Continue Reading

Enrifan answered
8 months ago

QUESTION

What lens/lenses would you buy to accompany your Nikon D1500 and why would you choose it?

After days of indecision I've decided I'll be buying the Nikon D5100. Now my only issue is what lens/lenses to go for. I think it will be best to give you an idea of what types of photographs I intend to take and information about the type of environment and space I'll be working in as well as the type of video footage I intend to shoot. I'll throw in a few example photos to show you what my expectations are in regards to the full potential of the camera and lens/lenses. Photographs I'm going to be taking a mixture of headshots, head and shoulder shots, head to waist shots, the occasional full body shots and photos with family. But my photos will mainly be above the waist. Also 90% of these photos will be of myself, in other words they'll be self portraits. I will be taking a lot of gym progress photos to track my weight gain (suffered muscle atrophy due to injury). Most of my photos will go into online albums on facebook, flickr, instagram etc. They won't be blown up for now, I'm ...

LondonGuy asked
3 months ago

ANSWERS

First of all the "basic" 18-105 VR is, in absolute terms pretty sharp across the frame. If your technique is up to the lens you'd be doing very well. Secondly, no-one has ever complained to me that they could not make out the wrinkles, pores and spots on their faces in portraits. No-one. No-one wants detail in a portrait. They want the perception of detail, but you could be lynched for delivering actual detail. :-) Lastly, how big will you print ? Because if you print, say 10x20 and view it from a sensible distance you won't even see all the detail. Once you're looking at the image as a whole you'll probably not see all the pixel level detail that's there. So why worry about that detail ? Want to know how many megapixels are needed to print a top quality 8"x10" photo ? A mere 7 Mp. That seven megapixels. ( that's a top quality 300dpi print at 8"x10" ). And you could print that same image file at 16x20 ( and I've done that ) and when viewed as a complete image ( as an image should ) ... Continue Reading

darklamp answered
3 months ago

The kit lenses are perfectly sharp and unless you have astonishingly good technique ( and you wouldn't be asking if you did ), there's nothing preventing you making great images with them. Lord knows what people think "clarity" means ( seems to be a new buzz work for the equally vague "image quality" ).  Whatever you think it means there's not much the kit lenses can't do. Any of these are good sets of lenses I'd be happy to shoot with anytime : (1) 18-55 VR and 55-200 VR (2) 18-55 VR and 55-300 VR (3) 18-105 VR (4) 18-140 VR If you can't take great pictures with those lenses then you won't produce great pictures with any lens.  They're not suited to every photographic task, but they're excellent general purpose lenses. You seem interested in portraiture.  Forget the lens and concentrate on the lighting.  At the least to produce a good portrait indoors you should be thinking in terms of a flash.  Studio shots ( and you had at ... Continue Reading

darklamp answered
3 months ago

Let's summarize: Longer focal lengths take better-looking portraits. Shorter focal lengths bring you into the action. See this guy: Notice how the hand closer to the camera is bigger than the one behind? Short focal length. It brings you into the action. You feel like you're standing next to him. He'd look like a more handsome fellow with a longer focal length, but he'd also fell less personal. Now this guy: Either he's super-good-looking, or that's a long focal length. Short focal length would make the nose look unpleasantly big for a photo like this. It's especially important for a closeup like this. Reasonable conclusion. Kit lens is a good place to start. If you can splurge for something a little bit longer, that'd be better, though. 18-105, 17-70, 16-85, 18-140 -- that sort of thing -- which will also give you something in the portrait range. Portraits start to look really good around 85mm+. You can spend a few months with it, and figure out the strengths of portraits at 18mm ... Continue Reading

Alphoid answered
3 months ago

QUESTION

I love my 50m Prime, but need a wider angle

Hi Guys, I currently have a D7000 and 50m f1.4 Prime Nikkor lens and love the daylights out of it. It is truly an amazing lens with great bokeh and lovely soft and detailed colours. The problem I have is the angle, with the cropped censor the angle is just too narrow for me. The 50m also makes it difficult indoors to take portrait shots. So I am looking for an equivalent prime lens perhaps in a 35m f1.4? Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

JacquesVdM asked
7 months ago

ANSWERS

I also have the 50f1.4g, though I never used it on DX. My 50F1.8 AF (non-D) was the first Nikon lens I ever bought, back in 1992, and I used it on film, DX and FX. Like you, I found 50mm on DX not so good a fit. I like 35mm, on both DX and FX. Never tried the 35F1.8, but I've always heard good remarks on it. I have the 35F2, which I actually like, even on my D800e, although the corners are plenty weak. Really it's night and day different between corners (soft) and center (very sharp). Certainly it's better on DX where the worst of the corner effects are masked. An advantage of the 35F2 is that it focuses pretty close, which I think makes it more versatile. I tend to like the rendering of it. I recently got the Sigma 35F1.4 ART. Quite an amazing lens - very sharp wide open, and then it gets better. For a 1.4 lens, CA is extremely well controlled wide open too. (A lot better than the 50F1.4 g). It's a surprisingly big and heavy lens. I look forward to getting to know it better over ... Continue Reading

PHXAZCRAIG answered
7 months ago

JacquesVdM wrote: Hi Guys, I currently have a D7000 and 50m f1.4 Prime Nikkor lens and love the daylights out of it. It is truly an amazing lens with great bokeh and lovely soft and detailed colours. The problem I have is the angle, with the cropped censor the angle is just too narrow for me. The 50m also makes it difficult indoors to take portrait shots. So I am looking for an equivalent prime lens perhaps in a 35m f1.4? Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated. Thank you What sort of price range are you looking at? A 35/1.8 could work, is nice and cheap and decent quality.  The downside is that 35 is pretty close to 50 in the grand scheme of things. Another option in this range is the Sigma 30/1.4... I have it and prefer it to the 35/1.8 (I had that one first, but found that it required stopping down to be truly sharp and would miss focus in tungsten light on my D7000... the Sigma 30/1.4 fixes both these problems for me).  Downside is that it is slightly larger, heavier, ... Continue Reading

The Big One answered
7 months ago

I have the same d7000 and 50mm 1.4 setup. It's fantastic. If you want to go wider, here are some options: 35mm 1.8. Cheap at $200. Pretty good lens that everyone loves. But I don't think pictures from it are as nice as the 50mm 1.4, especially regarding bokeh, but it's fine. I also feel like it's a little too close to the 50mm in terms of focal length. 35mm 1.4 nikon or sigma. Probably excellent, but we're talking 4x or 7x the cost of the 35mm 1.8. 24mm 1.4. This equates to about 35mm on our dx cameras. Fantastic lens. But $$$. There are other options like the 28 1.8 nikon and 30mm sigma art 1.4. Continue Reading

chuhsi answered
7 months ago

Warranty Information

"No registration or "warranty" card is included or needed with a Nikon D-SLR or Coolpix camera. Keep your original, dated proof of purchase from the Authorized Nikon Inc. dealer in case warranty service is ever needed. These products do include either a mail-in form or a paper with a web link to our registration page:
https://support.nikonusa.com/app/product_registration
It's advised to register your product with Nikon so that we can send you information about future updates or service issues that may arise.


Nikkor lenses come with a standard one year warranty and Nikon Inc. lenses sold by authorized Nikon Inc. dealers will have a Nikon Inc. Five Year Extension. To register for the five year extension, one copy of the included form must be mailed in as indicated. Keep the Customer copy of the form as well as the original proof of purchase (sales receipt)."


Read the full warranty.

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