I’m after an inexpensive but high-quality prime lens for landscape photography with my D600. Can you recommend a good secondhand purchase?
Jason says... The Nikon AF 28mm f/2.8D is great value even if you buy it brand new, and makes an outstanding secondhand buy. A bonus is that many used examples are sold with a lens hood, which you have to buy as an optional extra when getting a new one.
Nikon AF 28mm f/2.8D
Compact and lightweight, yet well made, it’s a smart buy for the great outdoors Released: 1994 Price new: £245/$290 Price used: From £90/$110 This lens has been on sale for 22 years, so secondhand bargains aren’t hard to find. The 28mm focal length gives generous wide-angle coverage on an FX body, making it ideal for landscapes. Its aperture ring is superfluous for D-SLRs, and it lacks an internal autofocus motor, but that’s no issue on the D600, other FX bodies or high-end DX bodies like the D7200, which have in-camera motors driving autofocus.
Centre sharpness is great even when shooting wide-open at f/2.8, although the edges and corners of images can look soft, and vignetting is pronounced. That’s seldom an issue for landscapes, where you’ll more often use a medium or narrow aperture to extend the depth of field. At f/8 to f/11, sharpness is excellent across the whole frame, and vignetting is negligible. As with most 28mm lenses, barrel distortion is noticeable, but it’s uniform and easy to correct.