The question of 35 mm or 50 mm will probably ring a bell to someone who has planned to buy a fixed lens before. When you start to look into the possibility spectrum offered by the brand of our camera (doesn’t matter if it is Canon, Nikon etc … most of them have it) we will find these two focals that, by the way, have generally good criticism. There are many more like the 28 mm, 20 mm, 85 mm,… but the most popular are the ones mentioned in this post so we will take them as reference.
Even if some back away when they buy a fixed lens because of the fact that instead of seeing the zoom ring move, you have to move it, the quality of a fixed lens normally exceeds that of the variable focals and this is the reason many decide to take the jump.
But the question returns, fixed lens of 35 mm or 50 mm? Which one is better? It depends. This is the same as when you don’t know which photograph camera to buy. The first thing we have to think about is what type of photos we want to take with this fixed lens and value what each one can offer.
50mm: This one is the one which better approaches human vision. It is a good objective, especially to make portraits with much opened diaphragms and achieving this way the unfocused effect of the background with little field depth. It is also good for taking photos of details like food dishes, flowers, etc.
35 mm: It’s similar to the 50mm but it is more angular. If we need a fixed lens to take photos in interiors, the 35mm is more suited than the 50mm because of the simple fact that it will take more in. It is also good for taking portraits, but remember that because of the fact that it is more angular, we will have to stand closer and the photographed person can feel a little bit more intimidated (and the expression on her face won’t be the same one). It is just something we have to take into account.
Each brand has many 50mm or 35mm lenses with different maximum apertures. The ones that have lower numbers like the 1.8 or the 1.4 will always be the most luminous. Sometimes, from one to another it is more the price difference because of the lens quality than because of the light we can obtain. So the answer to the question can only be decided by you according to your budget and if you want to really invest or just buy a provisional lens.