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Portrait Lens for D70


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Patrick (Washington, DC) , Jun 08, 2005; 03:47 p.m.

i sold my 50/1.4 D after having used in on a D70 for a while. produced ugly bokeh, frequently with double lines. picked up a 50/1.8 instead for the occational use. I'd try that or a 85/1.8 (since the 85/1.4 is out of your price range)

Jerry Litynski , Jun 08, 2005; 06:01 p.m.

...or one of two Nikkor zoom lenses:

1. the 35-105mm f3.5D~ Nikkor --52mm filters, push-pull


2. the 28-105mm f3.5D~ Nikkor --62mm filters, 2-ring control

with a zoom, a two-person portrait is easier to handle: any in-between focal length you might need is available in one lens.

Ray - , Jun 08, 2005; 11:49 p.m.

Portrait lenses. 35, 50 and 85 primes. For diff heights of person .. Full body, half body or head shots.

Zooms; 17-55 DX or 18-70 DX, 35-70/2.8

The 105 DC is far long on digital IMO. Tele is good thou you may use the closer focal lengths instead.. Bokeh can be good.

Sergio Ortega , Jun 09, 2005; 11:14 a.m.


All good suggestions on a D70 "portrait lens" choice. As a long time Nikon user, and a recent D70 buyer, I've had the chance to try the above-mentioned lenses on the digital format for the typical portrait applications.

The standard 50mm (either 1.8 or 1.4) is good, as is the 85mm f/1.8 AF-D. And the kit lens is also a good choice at its long 70mm FL setting. Anything longer on the D70, such as the 105mm 2.8 AF-D micro, 80-200 2.8 zoom or one of the longer compact zooms like the 70-300, is also good, but these don't suit my style of portraiture (a bit too long and tight for the type of framing I like), and they are heavy and bulky.

Of all the lenses I have and have been using for years with my 35mm bodies, the Nikkor 60mm 2.8 AF-D micro used on the D70 for general portraiture seems to work the best for me. It's relatively small and compact, it auto-focuses quickly, it's reasonably priced and it is of the highest optical quality. And, if you choose to pursue close-up photography, you will also have an outstanding macro lens for the digital format.

Granted, the 60 micro is not as fast as the standard 50 or 85, but I feel it's fast enough for the type of general portraiture I do. I really like the super sharp results, though others may want a little less sharpness for their portraits.

Good luck with your choice.

Kenneth Beatty , Jun 09, 2005; 06:45 p.m.

All of the above mentioned lenses are good but I might also suggest that you take a look at the 24-120 vr. It is a very sharp lens. Atleast my sample is.

Jeri Leibovits , Jun 10, 2005; 05:33 a.m.

As a portrait lens I will go with the Nikkor 35-70mm F/2.8 and with the 50mm F/1.4 As you can see in the first shot: Sharr as bean taken with fully open aperture with the 35-70mm lens. In the second attachment: Sarah, she was made with the 50mm F/1.4 at the max (1.4), aperture. By the way, for the shots the lenses above was connected to Nikon D1 digital camera.

Nikkor 35-70mm F/2.8

Jeri Leibovits , Jun 10, 2005; 05:37 a.m.

Response to Portrait Lens for D70 (the Nikkor 50mm f/1.4

Sarah with the Nikkor 50mm F/1.4

Nikkor 50mm F/1.4

Stephen Fassman , Jun 10, 2005; 09:03 p.m.

Just the topic i was looking to start: D70 set to Portrait mode, 60mm/2.8 micro, No lens filter, SB800 set to i-ttl, with diffuser dome on. (30 pix in jpeg Fine-Medium, 30 in RAW) Subject: Prom night portraits: indoor and outdoor shots (@ 7PM) of my son & his girlfriend.

"The envelop, please" ...

1. Composition: Varying the working distance, the 90mm focal length was perfect for full length, waist up, shoulder up, and close ups of both together and as singles.

2. Picture quality: The micro's attributes worked great on all shots but the closeups: every adolescent skin blemish looked like a mini erupting volcano on their faces. This lens is too critical for all but the most perfect looking of Gods creatures, and only for those totally comfortable with and not self critical of their appearance. Now, How many of those do you know? Everyone will find some fault when they view portraits taken with this lens, and immediately call their Plastic surgeons.

** 3. The biggest disappointment was the clownlike kodachrome misrepresentation of natural red facial tones. Q: Did Nikon's PORTRAIT SETTING transform naturally colored cheeks, red lips, and red facial blemishes into glowing, bleeding, clown makeup? The indoor pix were much worse that the outdoor pix.

I planned on using (my "default-for everything" custom curve), "Point & Shoot" 4.1, in flexi P mode, and will be regretting this costly mistake for quite sometime unless someone in the group can recc a fix? .....

Q: Is there a Picture project/ Capture/Photshop software cure to turn my son & girlfriend back into adorable kids? Q: Is their an installable D70 Custom curve tweaked for portraits shot in diffused, soft light ? Is there One to use post processing?

I haven't the heart to show them the pix and her parents are eagerly awaitng their CD copy... Thanks to all for your sugg's!

PS: SB800 w/ dome: perfect indoor/outdoor exposures from 2'-16' . Very soft, & flattering light quality!

Kenneth Beatty , Jun 10, 2005; 09:50 p.m.

Stephen email me a copy and I'll see what I can do. No promises but if you like I'll email you back the steps.

Ian White , Jun 12, 2005; 07:19 p.m.

The 105mm f/2 DC (~150mm on ccd) is not too long for digital portraiture! In fact, using a telephoto for portraits will dramatically improve your results- telephoto compression generally makes your portraits more elegant and uniform. Additionally, large noses (like mine) are not as prominent as they are w/ a 50mm or 80mm lens. The 105mm DC is one of the finest primes Nikon has ever made, and the image quality (and build quality- hammered metal, not cheesy plastic like the 50mm and 80mm lenses) of this lens places it far above the 50mm's and 80mm's for both portraiture and daily use. I have the 80mm f/1.8 (sold my 50mm 1.4) and its nice, but simply falls short of the 105 in terms of contrast, sharpness, and color rendition. And it's only 20mm shorter than the 105. I love and prefer the 135mm DC and use it exclusively for portraiture (and many other applications) on my 35mm/digital format cameras, and next to the 135mm f/2 DC, according to Bjorn Rorslet, the 105mm is even better: http://www.naturfotograf.com/index2.html The difference in price between the 85mm f/1.8 and the 105mm f/2 DC becomes neglegable with careful perusal of used markets (I got mine for ~$420, under your limit). I hope you seriously consider the 105 DC... You'll love it... Ian

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