Graham Line , Jun 08, 2004; 02:10 p.m.
If your main concern is portraiture and smoothness in the out of focus areas, the 105/2.5 AIS (especially wide open) is probably a better choice than the 85/2. The 85 is OK, but it has the more characteristic Nikon edginess. Its main advantages, in my book, are the compact size, slightly fatter barrel and 20mm less focal length -- 105s just don't work for me. You're not giving up much speed. Haven't used the 85AF, and it's been a while with the 85/1.4, so can't compare those.
The 85 is a nice workable journalistic lens, and better than some pundits' reviews would have you believe.