Bokeh: 85mm 1.4D vs 105mm f2DC vs Sig 85mm 1.4 vs 105mm 2.8 VR


Registered: Jan 04, 2004
Total Posts: 6128
Country: Canada

I know you want the 1.4 .... but I just got the 85 f/1.8G and the images are stunning on my D7000 and D800.

Total Posts:

Avi B wrote:
85/1.4D look for an used one.


Kerry Pierce
Registered: Feb 01, 2004
Total Posts: 3860
Country: United States

FWIW, my favorite portrait primes are the Sigma 50 f/1.4, Nikon 85 f/1.4, and the 2 Nikon f/2 DC lenses. I use them on both DX and FX. For straight headshots, the 135 and 105 are usually my choice.

With regard to your statement about the 85 being too close to 50, I suppose that it depends on your style and taste, but I use the 85 a lot more than the 50, on either DX or FX formats.

I've seen a lot of posts saying that 135 is too long on DX. I don't agree with that notion. Again it depends on personal taste, but lots of folks like to use the 150 Sigma and most everyone goes gaga over the 200 f/2 for portraits. So, I don't get the contradiction. The 135 f/2 is approximately 200mm effective, and the 105 is approximately 150mm effective on DX sensors. I love the look and especially the way the lenses draw the subject and bokeh, from both DC lenses.

Of course, the 85 f/1.4d was legendary, called the cream machine by many users, for many years. I've not tried the new 1.4g nor the Sigma 85 f/1.4, simply because I'm more than satisfied with the old version.

Lastly, I'm in agreement with all of the others in saying that the corner performance just isn't important to me, for any of my portraits. I don't need nor want sharp corner or edge performance in portraits. I want people to look at my subject, not at anything that might be a distraction on the edge/corner.

Your budget restraint is going to dictate pretty much the lens you buy and even the Sigma 85 new price is beyond $800 at $900 on Amazon. Both DC lenses and the Nikon f/1.4d are well beyond that for new prices. I'd guess that you're pretty much limited to a used Sigma 85 f/1.4 or a used Nikon 85 f/1.4d as your choices. I suspect that you'd be happy with either one, once you get it mounted and start taking photos with it.

good luck

Registered: Apr 03, 2004
Total Posts: 2237
Country: United States

105/2DC is my pick for portraits.

Registered: Dec 19, 2012
Total Posts: 38
Country: N/A

Thanks again for more replies.

After looking at more replies and research online, I have decided on the 85 1.8g.

I was going for the 1.4d but I prefer the 1.8g because of better focus accuracy. I will also save 300 dollars for more flash gear.

Thanks again!

Registered: Oct 08, 2011
Total Posts: 1714
Country: Canada

The 85mm 1.8G is less expensive in Canada right now - $429 at one place (sold out), $434 in stock (when I ordered) at Aden Camera in Toronto, less than the 85mm 1.8 D at B&H. With tax and free shipping my cost is about the same or just a little more than what they are going for used, but with a full warranty.

I ended up ordering the 85/1.8G despite my affinity for aperture rings (which on the D800 I'm not ever going to use). It seems like a compelling value. I'll get over the ring.

Registered: Mar 15, 2011
Total Posts: 140
Country: United States

Since you use a D7000, and I took this pic yesterday with a D7000, I thought I would post it, SOC!

The lens is the 105mm f1.8 manual

Registered: Sep 28, 2010
Total Posts: 4406
Country: United Kingdom

j_ross23 wrote:
Not a bad suggestion!

I'm trying to simplify my set up but that is certainly an option.

According to photozone, the Sigma is very poor in the corners and rates the 1.4D way better than the Sigma. Not sure how to interpret these results...thoughts?

The photozone test is horribly flawed and contradicts all other tests and user experience.

As far as bokeh goes I think the 1.4D may edge the sigma but I never owned the two simultaneously to test. Bokeh is very subjective though, I have had people say they preferred the bokeh from the 1.8D to the 1.4D