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1.5x Factor on Nikon DX Camera Lenses

edited February 2013 Posted in » Nikon Lens Talk
I recently learned about the 1.5x factor on DX cameras like the 5100. I read many reviews before ordering my D5100 and found that I wanted a 50mm f/1.8g lens. Shortly thereafter I found that this will essentially be a 75mm lens for us and I won't have much for options in close quarters or indoors. I didn't want the 35mm but may get one since it is about a 52.5mm for us.

My question isn't about which is better because that is everywhere and I will experiment to find what works for me. My question is which lenses does the 1.5x factor apply to and how can I tell? I will keep the kit lens (18-55mm) and 50mm until I learn the ropes and get to know the camera and my style first. Then I will want to upgrade that kit lens to something better and possibly pick up that 35mm if the 50mm is too close up indoors.

Can someone break down this DX 1.5x factor and when and when not to apply this to lens purchases? Thanks!


  • edited February 2013
    There's a thread here that gets very much in depth regarding this if you'd like to dig deep. Very simply put, since you have a DX camera sensor, all lenses whether marketed FX or DX will be cropped by your smaller sensor on the camera, causing the pictures to appear zoomed in. All lenses will have the 1.5 factor when shot with your D5100.
  • edited February 2013
    I thought so but didn't have the definitive answer. I just didn't want to apply the 1.5 to every lens I looked at and then find out they make ones in particular for the DX system that the 1.5 doesn't apply to. Now I know, thanks!
  • edited March 2013
    Rhino is correct. The 1.5X factor applies to all Nikon DX DSLR cameras; it's a ratio of the DX (or crop) sensor size to a 35mm full frame. It has nothing to do with the lens per se. If you purchase an FX (full frame) lens, the 1.5 factor still applies.

    Canon crop frame DSLR cameras have a 1.6 multiplier due to the fact they employ a smaller sensor than Nikon. So a 50mm lens becomes an 80mm on those cameras.
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