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Lens review

Nikon Nikkor AF 50 mm f/1.8D

20 January 2010
Szymon Starczewski

8. Vignetting

Small dimensions did make the Nikkor’s life a misery a bit in this category. Although it was designed on full frame, even on a small DX matrix and wide open it has the light fall-off reaching as much as 35% (-1.25 EV). Stopping down to f/2.0 helps but the level of this aberration remains high and amounts to 29%. Only by f/2.8 we start getting results that could be satisfying (12%) and by f/4.0 this aberration decreases to an imperceptible level - a bit above 10%.

Nikon Nikkor AF 50 mm f/1.8D - Vignetting


In this category the Nikkor loses to the Canon significantly as the latter by f/1.8 had the vignetting level of only 26% and by f/2.8 its aberration decreased to a marginal value of 6%. As a consolation we must notice the fact that the Sony DT 1.8/50, also a small sensor lens, fared even a tad worse than the Nikkor.

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Nikon Nikkor AF 50 mm f/1.8D - Vignetting

As the Nikkor is a full frame device, we have to check how it fares on that sensor in our test. Nobody should be surprised by the fact that the results on the FX can’t be good – after all the lens had just an average result on the DX sensor. Luckily, the worsening of the performance is not as definite as it we predicted at first glance, though. At the maximum aperture the Nikkor loses 41% of light in the frame corner (-1.54 EV) so only 6% more than on the DX sensor. On stopping down to f/2.0 we see a slightly better situation because the vignetting drops to 38%. A significant improvement can be only noticed by f/2.8 where the level of this aberration amounts to 20%. Vignetting practically disappears completely by f/4.0 and f/5.6 where we had results of 11% and 9% respectively.

Nikon Nikkor AF 50 mm f/1.8D - Vignetting

Nikon Nikkor AF 50 mm f/1.8D - Vignetting