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Mark
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#1
I'm such a n00b, but I have a question.

I have a Nikon D3300 and I'm after a good 'all-rounder' prime lens that won't break the bank. Any suggestions?

Thanks for not shooting me on sight!
 
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Dave
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#2
My nifty fifty (50mm f1.8) is my go-to lens for a walkabout, cheap as chips too; for yours a similar focal length will be the DX35mm f1.8 which I've also previously owned, and was one of the sharpest lenses I've ever had :)

Dave
 
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Mark Ell
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Mark
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#3
Thanks, Dave :)

I'm currently using the kit zoom lens, but I need more sharpness. I bought the camera about 4 years ago and I really haven't explored its potential as yet.
 
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droj
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#4
I'm currently using the kit zoom lens, but I need more sharpness
Might be handy then to review whether you tend to gravitate to any particular focal lengths within the range of the kit zoom, because this could indicate the focal length of prime lens that might suit you best.
 
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Jon
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#6
Thanks, Dave :)

I'm currently using the kit zoom lens, but I need more sharpness. I bought the camera about 4 years ago and I really haven't explored its potential as yet.
I have the D3300 and kit lens, I also have the Nikon 35mm 1,8G and as already mentioned above, pretty good too, To be honest, the kit lens is not that bad really. I have gotten some decent photos with the kit lens.
 
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Andy
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#7
The Nikon DX 35mm 1.8 is as cheap as chips and is a fine lens at that.

When I had the D3100 this was the lens I popped in my pocket to compliment the 18-55 lens which came with the camera.

The 35mm came out when I needed something more able to cope with dimming light, provide a shallower depth of field than the 18-55 could return or for using indoors.

Well worth a punt I would say.
 
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Mark Ell
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Mark
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#8
I'm currently going through my photos with the kit lens, jonbeeza, and 35mm would appear to be my preferred thing. Who knew? Not me, that's for sure! :D
 
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#10
DSC_0011a.jpg

I took this a few years ago on the Nikon D3300 and kit lens. Just happy snapping in Jpeg. Had I tweaked in RAW, the image would be better. Stopped down a bit, and it's not too bad, for a kit lens. The above was in f/4
 
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Mike
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#14
What do 'you' think you mean by 'sharpness'?
Its a mush over used and seldom defined and even less well understood concept.
The camera focuses, and uses a red dot to arbitrarily guess on a subject in the scene to focus on. Whats in or out of focus, or 'acceptable focus' will be a distance fore and aft of that guess point, proportional to a) the focus distance that the red-dot guessed, and the aperture that the elektrikery probably selected in the settings for the exposure that were used.... what you percieve as 'sharpness' in the resultant picture, is then a combination of factors in which the lens and the camera play but tiny p[art, and more the contrast between elements in your scene are differentiated....
Ie the 'sharpness' of a photo has almost noting top do with the quality of your lens... it has an awful lot to do with the subject you point it at, the lighting and the composition, then an awful lot more to do with how you use the camera, not even what camera you are using.
I have the D32oo and have had that the best part of a decde. It is more then good enough for me for the most partr, and so is its 'kit' 18-55 lens.
When daughter started her GCSE photo course, I bought her a 2nd hand D31oo, and a 2nd hand AS-D 35DX as her only lens... after an incident in the bathroom with baloons full of water being burst inches away from my camera and its delicate electronics......
I have to say that the AF-S 35DX is a crravking lens, especially for the money.. B~U~T, on it's own it will NOT make your shots any better, let alone 'sharper', even if you have a handle on what 'sharpness' may be or what controls it... YOU however might.
And first suggestion is to get off 'auto' and if worried about your focus, do it yourself,. not leave it to a red-dot.... and be aware of the Depth of Field, and how aperture setting effects that, which may beg getting of auto exposure too..... but more still, being aware how much is down to the subject and lighting and comporition, NOT the cemera or its lens or its settings....
The AF-S 35 'sounds' like a panacea, but believe me, other than the novelty of its wide f1.8 aperture offering razor thin DoF, beyond that it's NOT actually got a lot going for it that the kit 18-55 hasn't.
Going 'primes' is fun, I will say, and I bought an M42 adaptor to use the ;legacy lenses from my M42 film camera with the D32oo. They don't auto focus, and on my D32oo the camera cant even 'meter' with them, so I have to go manual everything and use the thing with less automation than even the old M42 Sigma MK1 the lenses are native too! These old legacy lenses, though are 'cheap' and second hand value of the entire bag full, is probably no more than I paid for Daughter's AF-S 35.... but entire experiment taght me that they were best employed on the M42 Sigma film camera they were native to, and Daughter ultimately got herself an old Nikon FE (I think) film camera to use legacy lenses on.....
Many of these old film only era, legacy lenses, have fantastic resolving properties and offer amazing resolution, as might be perceived as 'sharpness' if that is really what you are after... but it is mostly delivered by old legacy film cameras that demand that YOU do the focusing, and make the settings and use the DoF scale, and pay more attention to your subject, the lighting, framing and composition... it's not something that you 'buy with a different bit of kit.
Which begs suggestions; first that the kit 18-55 is probably good enough, next, you will likely find more difference just going manual focus, and outstanding the settings better, than you will a different lens... and for what you 'say' you want to achieve, chasing that will either throw up a lot of alternatives like film/legacy lenses, and/or take you down a route confirming its the kit in your mitt and GAS rather than the know-how in your head, that matters.
Your call...
That Nikkor AF-S35 remains a cracking and gt value lens though, b~u~t, I'm sanguine, it or anything else is the answer to your preyers.... though you might convince yourself it is
 
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Mike
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#15
Example shot. Look carefully, what is 'in' focus?
Looks to me that its the piping on the back of the passenger seat. Yes the rest of the cockpit does look a bit 'soft' Overall framing though sugests that you were relatively close, and ass said the DoF is a % of the focus distance, so at short focus distance you will get a shallow DoF and bits of scene will go out of acceptable focus fairly shortly either side of the focus point, even at relatively narrow apertures.
In this example the f1.8 AF-S 35 I don't think would have helped much if any.
It looks a pretty well lit scene, the wider aperture of a 'fast' prime would have just made the DoF even shorter, meanwhile, you have wide expanse of bright colour, in the orange and tan, and not a lot of contrast until you get to the black dashboard, mostly in shadow.
Personally for such a near subject, I would likely have used either my Ultra-Wide-Angle 8-16mm lens, or my 4.5mm fish eye, then cropped the final image down to that framing. In either case, the 'much' shorter focal length would have meant a much closer closest focus distance and a much greater Depth of Field, around my focus point, that I would have likely chosen manually, and probably the centre of the steering wheel boss, as that's what tends to be the 'natural' focal point, in or out of the car.
With UWA or fish lenses, the closest focus distance would be inches from the camera anyway, and with even a pretty moderate aperture I would have got a DoF of acceptable focus, probably from the tail to nose of the car. This would not however have done anything about the stark contrast between the bright paintwork and shadowed dash... for that I would have to make some sort of decission on the exposure and either let the bright-work blow, to get some detail in the shadows, or loose the shaddows to keep the brightwork, and probbly underexpose the whole to saturate the colours in the bright bits.... or come back later in the day when the sun wasn't so bright, and was lower in the sky, and I might get a tad more contrast, and texture in the scene over-all.
EH, this is NOT something you will solve 'just' with the kit on your mitt... and you would have most of the same problems whatever lens you had to hand....
Making the best of? Like I said, not coming back laster in the day may not have been an option. Using another lens, likewise and probably not a solution. So working with what you got.... back up, dont try and get it all at once. D3xoo series have wopping sensor counts and loads of extra pixies for cropping... So back up, maximise the DoF from the longer focus range; and if that means including unwanted by-standers or other background in your picture as captured, so be it... you can cut them out later by cropping the picture, you don't 'have' to get it in-camera, each and every time. Next; focus manually on what is the most important element, as suggested here, probably the steering wheel boss, use manual exposure to maximise DoF and get what you want in acceptably focus rather than leave it to the electrikery to guess what you may.,
This is all a question of technician, not technology; what you got aint 'bad' and anything else might be no better, its just knowing where the kits limitations are, and more, your own.
 
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Jon
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#18
The kit lens can produce good results, if you have good light. I have got some lovely photos of the grandchildren, taken with the kit lens, outdoors with nice light.
 
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#20
35mm 1.8G.jpg

Above: Nikon 35mm 1.8G ISO 1600 f/5 taken on the Nikon D3300.


kit lens.jpg

Above: Nikon 18-55 kit lens. Set to 35mm ISO 1600 f/5 taken on the Nikon D3300.

Both images taken under the same conditions. With not very good lighting.
 
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TCR4x4

Wishes he had a couple more Inches
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Tom
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#22
Does the 35mm look any better?
Top shot quite clearly sharper to my eye. I wouldn’t expect the 35 to be much better at f/5, it’s at wider apertures where the difference lies. The kit lens can only go to about f/4 at 35mm anyway. Whilst the kit lens isn’t bad, the 35mm is better especially at f/1.8!
 
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#23
Top shot quite clearly sharper to my eye. I wouldn’t expect the 35 to be much better at f/5, it’s at wider apertures where the difference lies. The kit lens can only go to about f/4 at 35mm anyway. Whilst the kit lens isn’t bad, the 35mm is better especially at f/1.8!
Yes, but only just. I was really pointing out, that the kit lens is really not that bad. :)
 
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