I have had photography as a hobby for about 4 years and recently bought a Nikon D7000.
I am now looking to expand my lens assortment, currently have the 18-105 VR and a tamron 70-300 and am now looking for a lens for high quality photos. Read about prime lenses and from what i understand, this is where you get the most sharpness.
But I am totally new to these type of lenses and would like your opinion on what type of prime lens I should start with.
About a year ago, I purchased the Nikkor 60mm f/2.8 D (not the ED version) to replace my aging 55mm Micro-Nikkor. I have been very pleased with this on my DX and FX format cameras. 60mm is a nice portrait length for DX cameras and the lens will shoot 1:1 macros as well. Even at infinity, the lens is very sharp.
I just picked up the Nikon 50mm 1.8 for my D7000 and so far I'm pretty impressed with the image quality. I also picked up the Tamron 17-55mm 2.8 as well. I also have an 85mm 1.4 prime lens that I love for shooting the kids outside. Like someone suggested check out some of the sites that rent lenses or take your body with you to the camera store and see if they will let you test out before you buy at least in the store.
A Nikon-equipped friend of mine has said that the difference between the 1.4 & 1.8 version of the 50mm prime was barely noticeable and not worth the price difference.
I would have to agree I looked at both and could see paying twice the price for the 1.4 when the 1.8 looked just as good.