New Nikon D3000 Lens Test!  

Posted by The Simple Layman in

Well, I broke down and finally went digital with a new Nikon D3000, which in spite of some bad reviews, I love.  I was told that my older Nikon 50mm series E lens would not adapt but I found this not true.  It adapts well, but only in manual mode, which is the mode I like for my more serious work.

I made the choice to get the camera as a family camera that all of our six family members could use and for a business we hope to have someday soon.  My kids love it.

When I first put the original 18-55mm lens to the test with pics of my wife's bookshelf in our bedroom I was disappointed with the sharpness and thought, "digital doesn't really compare with a film shot for sharpness."

Last night I decided to really put the camera to a lens test by placing the camera on a tripod and taking shots with both the original 18-55 mm lens and my Nikon 50mm series E lens, (not really Nikon's sharpest older lens), from my Nikon fm.  I then cropped a section of each photo which you can compare side by side. What I found was the lack of sharpness was not the fact that it was digital but because of the 18-55mm lens.

No doubt, it is a zoom lens and zoom lenses for the most part have improved much over the years, but the old lenses seem to just have an edge over the newer ones.  As I said, the older series E lens isn't even Nikon's sharpest lens made in Nikon's 35mm film camera "hey-day."

The sad part is that Nikon, at least to my knowledge, isn't making single format lenses for this camera with auto-focus features.  This is ok for me since the older lenses mount fine and are available on the net for less than $100.00, a small pittance compared to the cost of newer lenses.

Pic taken with original 18-55mm lens with enlarged section

Pic Taken with 50mm Series E lens and enlarged section

Hope this helps some of you who still enjoy the use of single format lenses and expecially don't want to give up the use of your old ones. By the way, I still love my old film cameras and plan to still use them.

As an added note:  Since the Nikon D3000 has an image sensor 1.5 times smaller than a 35mm negative frame, you must multiply the actual lens size of the lens from your 35mm camera by 1.5 to find out what the comparable image size is with the D3000.  In other words, an image taken on the D3000 using a 50mm film camera lens, when multiplied by a factor of 1.5, is the equivalent of a 75mm lens on 35mm film camera.  Thus, a 50mm lens on the D3000 will have the effect of a 75mm telephoto lens.