After shooting with a nifty fifty 50mm lens, you’ll understand why it’s an essential part of many photographers’ gear bags— that goes for the novice and pro alike.
At well under $150 brand new for Canon and Nikon users, the entry level 50mm 1.8 is value-packed! Despite its low price tag, it packs a punch. It’s a great walk-around and travel lens with “normal” perspective on a full-frame body like the Canon 6D Mark II or the Nikon D610.
When shooting with a 50mm lens on a full-frame sensor, the distinct lack of distortion offers a more realistic perspective, which ironically lends a subtly surreal air to your photos. It’s like you are peeking over your own shoulder. A 50mm on a 5D Mark IV makes some sweet, sweet magic, baby!
On an APS-C cropped-sensor body like the Canon Rebel T6i, the Canon 7D, the Nikon D5300, or the Nikon D7500, the 50mm is great for portraits, giving you beautiful bokeh at wider apertures and an effective focal length that almost feels like shooting a prime 85mm lens on a full frame body. Side note: 85mm happens to be what many consider the perfect focal length for portrait photography.
I ❤️ 50mm
For a few years, it was just me and my very first DSLR, a Nikon D50, with a 50mm f/1.8. They’ve gone on to new homes (thanks, eBay!), but I’ll always appreciate that scrappy combination of simplicity and potential that challenged and enabled me to grow my photography skills.
Some of the photos I’ve taken with a “nifty fifty” 50mm lens over the years
50mm Lens Recommendations for Canon and Nikon DSLRs
Tell me about what’s in your camera bag!
Is a 50mm prime lens already part of your arsenal? Do you prefer shooting with primes or zoom lenses, and why?