The 50mm prime lens has been a stalwart companion to many a photographer, as the 50mm focal range is generally thought to replicate the same field of view as seen by the eye. Many budding photographers seek to get a ''nifty fifty'' in order to use a very wide aperture and produce photos with sharp subjects and blurred, out-of-focus backgrounds.
Until the release of the subject lens, the 50mm ƒ/1.4G AF-S, Nikon had produced (and continues to produce) two AF-D, screw-driven 50mm lenses, with ƒ/1.8 and ƒ/1.4 maximum apertures. When Nikon elected to produce ''screw-less'' consumer camera bodies such as the D40, D40x and D60, owners of those cameras were marginalized by rendering these older-style lenses partially incompatible with the newer cameras; the lenses will mount, and function properly, except the camera cannot autofocus the lens.
The release of the 50mm ƒ/1.4G, with its built-in AF-S motor, fills this gap, giving Nikon owners a brand-loyal option that was filled by the Sigma 50mm ƒ/1.4 EX DG HSM. The Nikon 50mm ƒ/1.4G is full-frame compatible; mounted on a sub-frame (DX) camera body, the lens will produce an effective field of view of 75mm.