Since I switched to Nikon from my old and rusty Olympus E-510 I have been lacking a macro lens. Moreover, my primary portrait lens, the AF Nikkor 85mm f/1.8D, is already bit long on my crop sensor in confined spaces. So I wanted a little less longer portrait lens and a macro lens. And what I tried two weeks ago was killing these two bird with one stone: I bought the AF-S Micro Nikkor 60mm F/2.8G ED, which is a macro lens with a portrait-ready focal length and a F2.8 aperture.
(Lighting diagrams and pull back shots for the two product shots can be found in the flickr comments for the two photos)
Here are some initial experiences with the lens.
First of all, I am quite happy with it so far. It’s already a heavy lens given that it has a fixed focal length in the medium range and the fact that the front element looks tiny compared to the diameter of the whole lens.
The sharpness looks good as expected from a prime lens and event a FX lens on a crop sensor.
What might be a surprise to some people is that the lens actually isn’t F2.8 all the time. Starting from approx. 0.5 meters to near focusing distance the minimum aperture goes gradually up to F4.8. However, this is really no problem for these distances as the depth of field would be unbelievably narrow and focusing nearly impossible at F2.8.
As others have already pointed out, the lens hood is quite large and might get in the way for close macro work so that you have to remove it in this kind of situation.
Another nice feature is that is has a rubber at the lens mount for weather sealing.