Since the Nikon 50mm f/1.8 didn’t come with a lens hood I figured I’d invest on perhaps one of the most important accessories you can have on each of your lenses.
A lense hood in itself has multiple functions with the most important one being that it shades the lens from stray light that may result when shooting out on a sunny day. From experience, I’ve found that having it attach has improved both contrast and image quality as well. There’s also the added benefit of having extra protection from accidental bumping of the lens although there’s not much defense you can expect when the lens hood is of rubber material.
Why rubber? Well, honestly that’s the only one available if you own the f/1.8 version. The hard plastic one is available only for the pricey f/1.4 model and unfortuantely that one is not compatible with the f/1.8. I tried making it fit at Adorama but to no avail.
The Nikon HR 2 lens hood (hard plastic) retails for almost $20 on Amazon but this $7 aftermarket model (rubber material) fits just as perfect. No need to spend extra just for having the Nikon name branded on this specific product.
It’s worth mentioning that I rarely ever use the pop-up flash on the D90 so having to worry about a shadow being casted with the lens hood attached is not a concern. As far as installation is involved, it easily screws on and stays on and when not in use, you simply collapse the hood backwards to store it.
The nifty 50mm is my primary lens at the moment until I replace the D90 kit lens (18-105mm f/3.5 - 5.6) with a 24-70mm f/2.8 and I’m accustom already to using a hood lens on any of those lenses but not so much with the 50mm until now and it feels and looks appealing.
Aside from all the added valued with regard to owning a lens hood, you have to admit that seeing one attached to your camera makes you appear intimidating and in control. People will continue to think to themselves, “wow, he/she must be a pro.”