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D300 and AI-S Lens Question

Jeff Ackerman , Jan 05, 2009; 12:12 p.m.

Hi All,
I have been reading the many pros and cons on the D300 and the D90 on this web site and would like to thank everybody for all of the input that they have provided.
I am ready to get back into the SLR world after a long time and was wondering if my old Nikon Ai-S 105mm / f1.8 lens (s/n 189289) will work on the D300? Is this worth considering? I also have a Nikon Series E 50mm/1.8 lens as well and was wondering if this would work also.
With working lenses I may have enough money to get the D300.
Any input would be great!


Ellis Vener , Jan 05, 2009; 12:29 p.m.

if it is an AI-S lens you'll have no problems. All you need to do is program in the focal length and and maximum (f/1.8 ) aperture in the Set up menu under Non-CPU lenses.

Here is what Bjorn Rorslett thinks of the 105mm f/1.8 AI-S Nikkor, which he rates as a 4.5 out of 5 on the D2X body.

A nicely balancing lens that is sturdily built and fairly heavy. It produces very sharp and contrasty images within its optimal range from f/4 to f/11. Wide open, image contrast is lowered by internal flare, so the f/1.8 setting shouldn't be used indiscriminately. It is moderately resistant to flare and ghosts under normal shooting conditions. Set it to f/5.6 if you are keen on getting the maximum quality from this lens. On the D2X, the flare at f/1.8 is even more prominent and it looks more like residual spherical aberration to me. Anyway, image detail is very good at f/1.8 despite the lowered contrast, and by stopping down to f/2.8 you do get very high contrast, and superb image sharpness. The excellent image quality holds up surprisingly well to near f/16, but from here you do get some softening mediated by diffraction effects. There is virtually no chromatic aberration (CA) to be seen at the normal aperture settings, but a tiny amount of CA begins to creep in when the lens is stopped down beyond f/11.

He gives the 50mm f/1.8 Series- E lenses a 4.

The 105mm f/1.8 AI-S was one of my favorite portrait lenses on an F5, D1X and D2X.

Michael Bradtke , Jan 05, 2009; 12:35 p.m.

I have the 105 f/1.8 and love to use it on my D300. I love the shallow DOF and it comes in very handy for those low light shots.
They only drawback I see to using this lens is that it can be hard to get a sharp focus wide open. It takes practice


Carl Becker , Jan 05, 2009; 01:13 p.m.

I would only add a link to Bjorn's site:
I use three AIS lenses and I use Bjorn's site as a reference often.

Jeff Ackerman , Jan 05, 2009; 01:52 p.m.

Thanks for info. Will the autofocus work?

Ian Rose , Jan 05, 2009; 01:53 p.m.

I use the 50 e series lens on my D40 dont have any problems with focusing.Use a old Weston master 5 light meter to account for lack of internal metering but I do find that the colour's are different from my kit 18-55 lens no complaints about it
Ian R

Ian Rose , Jan 05, 2009; 01:55 p.m.

Only the focus confirm light.
Ian R

John Williamson , Jan 05, 2009; 10:48 p.m.

Any auto focus lens will AF on the D300. The AIS lenses you mentioned are not AF, so ... you still get to twist the lens, just like you always have.

Jeff Ackerman , Jan 06, 2009; 10:21 a.m.

Thanks for all of the info. I think the D300 is for me. Now I will move on to looking for possibly a "kit" with one AF lens. I am sure I will be starting another topic soon on which AF lens to get! LOL!
Thanks again to eveybody that responded!

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