I’ve previously posted a detailed hands-on review of the Nikon Z 50mm ƒ/1.2 S prime lens. This isn’t your average nifty-fifty fast 50mm lens. Yes, it’s fast–very fast, in fact–but it’s also much larger and heavier and much more expensive. Overall, I’ve found it to be an excellent lens, with superb optical performance. It’s a particularly good choice for something like reportage, wedding photography, portraits, studio work, or even travel photography when size and weight aren’t too much of an issue.
Below is a selection of photos I’ve taken with this lens. These sample images are designed to go alongside that review.
Below are a few sample images I’ve shot with this lens to give a sense of how it performs in real-world shooting. They were all taken on a Nikon Z8.
These were all shot in RAW and lightly processed in Lightroom. Something I have done with these is to disable the automatic corrections applied in-camera by default (vignette control, diffraction compensation, auto distortion control).
Some of the newer Z-mount lenses hardcode these corrections into the RAW files (not just the JPGs). For those, it’s not possible to undo the automatic corrections in Lightroom—you can only do it in the camera before the photo is taken.
But for this lens, they’re handled a bit differently. The automatic corrections are embedded in the RAW files’ EXIF data and applied by default, but it’s also possible to disable them in post. Which is what I’ve done in this case. So these shots do not include those automatic corrections.
In practice, though, it makes surprisingly little difference. The main visual difference is that there’s a little more lens vignetting darkening around the edges of the frame at wide apertures. Otherwise, there doesn’t appear to be much heavy lifting being done y the automatic optical corrections—the lens is just optically excellent without the processing help.
Sample Images Taken with a Nikon Z 50mm ƒ/1.2 S Prime Lens
You can click on each image for a full-size version for a closer look.
Nikon NIKKOR Z 50mm ƒ/1.2 S Price & Availability
Nikon has set the MSRP for this lens at $2099.
Check the current price and availability at:
Optical Correction Tools
I deliberately haven’t applied extensive corrections to these images. And the general rule of thumb in photography is that it’s better to get the shot right at the time of capture rather than trying to fix it after. That’s a great aspiration, but it’s not always possible to do if you’re bumping up against limitations or flaws in gear, conditions, or technique.
But it’s worth mentioning that there are some excellent tools available to help address common issues with lenses, such as distortion, chromatic aberration, and lens vignetting when editing the images. All-round image processing apps like Lightroom Classic and Capture One have solid tools built in already that often cater to specific lens profiles (or you can make your own).
Some more specialized tools can take it even further. DxO, in particular, sets the gold standard. Their software is built on the foundation of their incredibly deep archive of data from their extensive lab testing of the optical performance of lenses and cameras. But there are some other excellent specialized tools available. These are well worth a look (and have free trials):