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Two Nikkor 35mm Lenses

They say everything comes in threes!  If that’s the case I’m wondering what the third thing is!!!

I have been seriously wanting to own a high quality 35mm lens for almost all the years I’ve been a photographer. Now that I finally got my full frame D700, I became determined to spend some of my leftover budget on a 35mm Nikon lens.

And lo, what happens, I find a 35mm f2.8, second hand for a very reasonable price, buy it, try it and it is superb…

So then, the same day, I go to have another lens serviced (my embattled 50mm f1.4, if you must know) and what do I find, also for a very reasonable price at the service shop?

Another 35mm Nikon lens, this time an f2!!!! So I think “Hang on do I give the 2.8 back to the other shop and buy this one? Or do I keep the 2.8 for my wife, now the proud owner of the venerable D200 and get the f2 for me”? Oh the delicious dilemma of ownership.

So after a quick consult with the wife, we’re now proud owners of not one but two Nikon 35mm lenses. Below are some of my initial test shots. It’s a mix bag!

The first six images above were shot on the Nikkor 35mm f2, the last 6 were shot on the Nikkor 35mm f2.8, on my new Nikon D700, in monochrome mode. All were shot at a diaphragm of f2 or f4 to test the lens as well as possible. All (as always) shot on RAW format, at 14 Bit depth, processed in Capture NX2, saved to Tiff 16 bit RGB, and finalised in Photoshop CS5. Saved for web at 1024 pixels across at 72 dpi. ISO rating varies from 200-400. None of the images were cropped (another rather strict habit of mine, if an image doesn’t work the way I saw it in camera then it is an image that I will not use, except if I need it cropped for a piece of design work). As also it seems a corollary of digital cameras and more specifically the Nikon D700, the best exposure regimen is to underexpose by anything from 0.5-1.0 stop (a friend was telling me he habitually underexposes by a stop and a half!) for best results. 

Aside from the over-optimistic exposure meter, another anomaly of the D700, by common consensus, seems to be an over zealous tendency towards the cooler end of the colour spectrum, which tends to make images a little chilly for my liking, but hey god gave us Photoshop and warm UV  [1A-1B] filters for a reason!

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