Deal of the day: Nikon 85mm f/1.8G lens now $40 off

The Nikon 85mm f/1.8G lens is currently selling on Amazon for $439.95 - this is $40 off compared to the full price of $476.95. The lens is shipped and sold by Amazon. In the past few months Amazon has been quietly discounting Nikon products for a few days and then bringing the price back to normal.

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  • fanboy fagz

    its something but damn.. $40 doesnt buy you $30 today.

  • T.I.M

    I have 14 Nikon lenses, If I buy an other one my wife will kill me (with the help of her mother…)
    Anyway I already have the f/1.4 version.

    • Jon S

      the 1.4 version is much better.

      • T.I.M

        You should not say that because Nikon sell more of the f/1.8 so the f/1.8 is BETTER (I’m just trying to save your life)

        • Viktor

          Yeah, someone does not know what he is writing and where πŸ˜€

          • T.I.M

            OK (short enough?)

            • Viktor


      • TheInfinityPoint

        The 1.8 is very good in my experience, or at least my copy is very very good. The 1.4 is noticeably softer at f/1.4. That extra 2/3 of a stop isn’t a whole much more light either. On the other hand I will be eventually getting a 105 1.4 so those two combos would be perfect for my uses.

        • Jon S

          I’ve used both and the 1.4 version looks better. I recently sold my 1.8 version because I didn’t like the results compared to the 1.4

          • TheInfinityPoint

            I’m just curious, did you try AF-fine tuning both lenses? I’ve personally found that it makes a very noticeable difference, even as small of a difference as 5 tick marks in AF fine tune.

            On the other hand I do believe you, I have a 24-120 f/4 that looked pretty bad on my D750 and assumed it was a bad lens (even after fine tuning), but it looked great on my D610 (same MP).

            • Jon S

              I did, I also manually focused them in live view, maybe it was just my copy. First let me just say the lens was NOT soft by any means it just didn’t have the same look as the other lens. It was around the same sharpness as my 24-70 2.8E lens.

  • Adam Brown

    I was about to sell my 85/1.8 on keh, lol.

    • dabug91

      oh good fkn lord, don’t ever do that. KEH is a total rip off.

      • Jon S

        KEH is a ripoff.

      • Adam Brown

        Convenience….. if I go via ebay.. after fees, maybe I’ll get $300…
        KEH may give me a bit over $200…. but hassle-free..

        But if anybody wants a near-mint Nikon 85/1.8g for $320, contact me, lol.

        • KEH also eliminates the risk of getting scammed.

          • Adam Brown

            Exactly. No need to take pics, go back and forth with buyers. Clean and simple… still get about 60-70% of what I’d clear selling it on my own.

            I’ve sold by different routes before. I may try eBay first….

            I need to finance my Irix purchase, so selling a couple lenses I no longer use.

          • Andrew

            As the old adage goes, it is better safe than sorry πŸ˜‰

          • Really? I know there are stories out there, but I’ve traded cameras, lenses and a whole lot of other “stuff” on Ebay since early 1999 and I’ve only had one issue. Well over 1,000 transactions. Whenever I’ve sold photo gear it goes fast, they pay and I’m done. I don’t like the fees, but who does?

        • dabug91

          I’m sure you’d have no problem getting $350+ off Craigslist, especially if you live near any cities.

          • Chris

            If to go through forums, one always get more. KEH is for those who doesn’t want to bother. It’s paying more than most other 2nd gear dealers.

        • Chris

          PayPal has additional 7.5% fee other than eBay fee. KEH also pays for shipping. In the end it is a better place than eBay.

          They sometimes give an additional 10% if I leave sale order open longer than a week or two.

    • Viktor

      Do not sell it, keep it till you do not have a better lens in house tested and calibrated πŸ˜‰ Its really not a bad one, maybe you would want it back later πŸ˜€

      • Adam Brown

        I’ll have to look up my Lightroom calendar… but thousands.
        I do most of my pro portrait work with the Tamron 85.

        I get some stellar results with it.

        This album was almost entirely the Tamron 85:

  • Viktor

    Actually this lens is probably the best buy “price/quality ratio” lens in the Nikkor product range. Good optics (in piece of plastic, but OK this time….) for very affordable price. If Nikkor had priced their 1.8G lenses all at this level, Sigma would probably had hard times entering the market with Art lenses like they have done…..

    • Adam Brown

      It’s the best bang for buck in the Nikkor lineup probably. I simply upgraded to the Tamron 85/1.8 — $300 more for VC and optically, still slightly better than the already high performing Nikkor.

      Between the generally high pricing, and lack of VC on prime lenses, Nikon has given Sigma and Tamron big opening.

      At this point, the only Nikkors I’m using, don’t really have comparable 3rd party options — I’m using the 18-35g, another great bang for buck lens. And the Nikon 70-200/4 — The 3rd parties haven’t offered F4 telephoto zooms yet. Finally, I am using the Nikon 300/4 pf — a pretty unique offering.
      But most of my general purpose stuff has been replaced by Tamron — Tamron 24-70/2.8, Tamron 45/1.8, and Tamron 85/1.8. Quite often, my camera bag doesn’t contain any Nikon anymore.

      • Viktor

        Yes 70-200/4 is surprisingly good lens, you just remembered me a story happening me some year ago:

        I had 5 models, MUA, assistent – all women and I received this lens to take the pictures.
        You know this lens does not have the tripod collar mount ring, so I had to mount it by the camera which resulted in unbalanced set-up and while taking vertical pictures with the remote control the heavy lens was slowly falling down……

        Yes…… imagine what the girls wanted to do so the lens would “stand up”….. fun story but nothing out of those pictures (only photos of floor) and I really had to blush…… It was supposed to be serious photography….. πŸ™‚

        • Allan


      • fanboy fagz

        “my camera bag doesn’t contain any Nikon anymore.”

        and this says it all about nikons direction.

        any pro can fit his bag with 3rd party gear and know the images can be on par, but mostly better then oem lenses and this is a new time we are in.

        • Viktor

          Yes, I am going the same direction. Eventhought having still 5 Nikkors, I think they will be soon in minority…..

          Too many other manufactures making interesting lenses: Sigma Art, Zeiss Milvus, Irix, Tamron….

        • koenshaku

          Funny you should mention that for the 85mm G 1.8f I don’t think you can really beat buying a 3rd party lens that offers better performance at this price though.

    • Semaphore

      > If Nikkor had priced their 1.8G lenses all at this level, Sigma would probably had hard times entering the market with Art lenses like they have done…..

      Not really. The 1.8G line are all priced pretty low. The 35mm is only $530 too.

      But the Art primes are f/1.4, and they are way cheaper than Nikon’s 1.4 line. That’s the more equivalent comparison.

      • fanboy fagz

        actually, I believe 1, or 2 come quite close ($100-$150) to a sigma art equivalent.

        • koenshaku

          You should also add the cost of the USB dock to make sure it works with your camera body upgrade and to adjust the focusing.

      • Viktor

        Yes, you are also right.

        I did not talk about this part as the topic is the 1.8 lens, but yes, 50% comes from enthusiast deciding to buy metal optically sharper Art and 50% is from the professionals wanting to save money on still optically great lenses πŸ˜‰ The percentage is just out of the window πŸ˜‰

      • MB

        Actually not all Art primes are 1.4, there is that new 135 at 1.8 , but you are right of course, Sigma does offer top level lenses at Nikon consumer level prices…
        Sigma pulled the leg for third party lenses with 35 1.4 Art, I was completely blown away when I first tried it … it was so much better than Nikon own 35 at 1.4 and at half the price. The result was that demand for Nikon 35 dropped significantly, used ones started to show up really cheap and that resulted in even further sales drop for new ones.
        Then there was that underperformance with AF-S 58mm 1.4 announced at price level so high for a normal lens that everybody expected something really out of this world, and what we got was nice lens but nothing special really, and then a couple of months later came Sigma Art 50mm 1.4. After comparing these two lenses it was embarrassing for Nikon and there was no doubt any more, Nikon can be heavily beaten at their own game … the result … Nikon is selling only a handful of AF-S 58mm 1.4 to a hard core Nikon addicts …
        We have similar situation now with the new 105, it is a great lens, best Nikon ever made … but it is no better than new Sigma 85 at less than half the price … just for a price difference you could get the new 135 1.8 that will certainly be as good if not better … so how many 105s Nikon will sell?
        Maybe Nikon really should reconsider their tactics and instead of going wild with the pricing for lenses that do not sell they could try and be competitive. They should refresh their current lens lineup, for example 85 1.4 to at least match the Sigma Art 85 by improving optical design a bit and adding a couple of ED elements but keep the current price … currently even their own 85 1.8G is competing with it …
        There is one thing not so good for us consumers though … in the current setup we will never see great and cheap (shorter than 105) Sigma Art 1.8 lenses …

        • Michiel953

          The 58 is not a “normal” lens.

          • MB

            Is it abnormal then?

            • Michiel953

              In your universe, yes.

        • Viktor

          58mm is so bad that I would not want to buy even at the price of 50Art πŸ˜€ Its underperformance and the hallo “I AM LIKE an OTUS” (eventhought I AM B_IISH1T) made me really angry. I have thought they are going to replace their very bad 50/1.4 which is probably the worse buy lens in the whole Nikkor range. It is better to buy that cheap plastic 50/1.8. At least you do not waste money πŸ˜€

          I have used to work with 55Otus and it at least deserved its premium label. That lens made me buy 1.7x viewfinder magnifier to be able to work with manual focus lenses πŸ˜€
          Did not have in hand 50Milvus but 50Art is no doubt the best 50 on the market so far (heavy, not weather sealed, but giving good results). Looking for Art II with magnesium body and full weather sealing….. hopefully

          Nikkor (lenses) is selling Volkswagens for the price of Mercedes….. πŸ™
          Hope 105/1.4 and 19PC in-hand will make me happy again…..

          I do not understand it, I have spent more then 20 years working happily with Nikkor…… but now I AM SO SAD πŸ™

          Nikkor, wake up, please!

      • VanHoff

        The Nikkor 35 1.8G FX is garbage.

  • Integral Moments

    Just ordered Sigma 85mm Art lens few days ago, tried it at local shop and oh my goodness, its an awesome lens, but hell bulky one too, looked at nikon f1.4 and its above my budget, actually not, but prefer to buy the new sigma 24-70 once it hit the market, saving money right now.

    I also tried nikon 85mm f1.8, its very nice too but not near the sigma wide open tho.

    I remember Nikon did a good sale on the 85mm maybe one and a half year ago and it come about 300$ if im not mistaken or around this number, i regret not buying it back then

  • An American in Canada

    Amazon does this a lot and not just on the US site. Add your wanted lenses to a wishlist and keep an eye on them, I’ve picked up a few of my favorites new and sold by Amazon for essentially refurbished prices – including my 14-24 2.8 and 20 1.8.

  • Photobug

    Amazon does some interesting things on prices – its like a roller coaster. You got to know when to buy and be patience.

    • I am curious how Nikon let them do this.

      • Allen_Wentz

        Nikon cannot legally fix prices in the USA market.

        • Yes, they do it in the US – dealers cannot sell under their MAP pricing.

          • TwoStrayCats

            I recently noticed new 14-24 f/2.8’s being sold by Abes of Maine for under $1,400. I asked B & H how this can be. Their response to me was “We are an authorized dealer and we cannot discount our pricing on those lenses.”

            I guess Abes is a Super-Grey dealer who sells a product with no warranty or registration.

            • I would not buy from Abe’s, but Amazon is an authorized dealer and they are not selling gray market gear (at least not in this case).

          • John Albino

            Actually, they can. MAP stands for Minimum Advertised Price and is especially pertinent if a dealer wants matching dollars from a manufacturer when running advertisements. *Theoretically* if a dealer wasn’t participating in a manufacturer’s promotion or coop advertising, the dealer could advertise (using its own money) any price it wanted. (In the U.S., per the FTC – Federal Trade Commission.)

            Also, according to the FTC, if the price offered by an online seller is less than MAP, it’s perfectly OK if the price is only available when placed in a secure shopping cart — which probably is how Amazon gets around the MAP.

            Google “What is MAP pricing” and there’s quite a bit of info on how dealers can get around MAP.

          • harvey

            dealers can not advertise they sell under MAP, what they do when you are standing in front of them with a wad of cash in your hand is entirely different.

      • Photobug

        Peter, I don’t know how they do it either with the Nikon pricing for dealers. It’s certainly an advantage for them over local and NYC dealers. I saw a low price on a D750 last year and could not believe it.

  • dabug91

    Well Nikon DID sell this lens for $400 during one of their rebate sales one time in early 2014, March I think.

  • Aldo

    As of now… this is still a lens that’s most affordable and, if used to its full potential, has the ability to make a huge footprint in your photos.

  • Mirrorless Sucks

    How can Amazon do this on their own and BH and Adorama not? Isn’t it Nikon that sets the lower limit of what their official dealers can charge?

    • Leo

      My guess is Amazon is so huge they just do what they want and pretty much dare the camera companies to do something about it. What’s Nikon going to do, pull their products from Amazon?

      • Mirrorless Sucks

        6 years ago or so, amazon was undercutting all the other dealers so Nikon started setting the prices to protect local and other online dealers.

        • Thom Hogan

          Nikon has had MAP pricing for far longer than that. MAP extends all the way back into the film era.

  • Thom Hogan

    I’m not aware that Amazon participates in Nikon’s coop program.

    But there’s a bigger thing happening here and the camera makers better watch out. Because they’ve cut so hard on dealer support, when the big boys like Amazon and B&H start demanding things, the camera companies are going to find that they are going to have to acquiesce. The volumes have shifted from brick and mortar to online and continue to shift more. And those online folk have a lot of money and clout.

  • Rameses the 2nd

    $40 off and $40 in taxes. Right back at where we started from.

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