Nikon Nikkor AF 50 mm f/1.8D
3. Build quality
The picture above draws a comparison between those two lenses. You can notice at once that the Nikkor, although more solidly-made, is smaller than the Canon (whether this fact will influence the vignetting we’ll find out later). Some other Nikkor’s advantages are also rather evident. First of all, we deal here with a real manual focusing mechanism, not a dummy like in the case of the Canon. The manual focus ring is perhaps neither big nor very comfortable but it allows to work quite accurately and conveniently – something that the Canon can’t provide in any case. A precise manual focusing in the case of the Canon verges on the miraculous; if that miracle happens and we set the sharpness in the right position, the ring will slide back under its own weight after a moment. Apart from that, the Nikkor sports a distance scale – a feature simply non-existent when it comes to the Canon lens.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
The picture above shows us another Nikkor advantage, compared to its rival. It’s a metal mount, which bodes well for the life span and ensures a lower susceptibility to off-axis aberrations which tend to appear when the plastics in the mount start to wear out and get loose.
To sum up, the price difference of about 25 $ doesn’t justify such a huge discrepancy in quality. Being a Canon system fan I would prefer paying these additional 25 $ and getting a product with the Nikkor’s quality in return.
At the end, there are just a few remarks left about the inner construction of the tested lens. It consists of 6 elements in 5 groups. The manufacturer doesn’t boast about any special glass usage but does mention the fact that the elements are powder-coated with special Nikon Super Integrated Coatings which are supposed to provide a high-contrast picture even at the maximum relative aperture. Apart from that the lens offers an aperture with 7 diaphragm blades which can be closed down to f/22 and a 52 mm filter thread.