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Nikon sells a lineup of crop primes, why not Canon?

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crasher8:
So in assisting a friend search for new lenses on her D90 I advised her to check out some decent economical fast Nikon primes. These are crop only lenses akin to EF-s for Canon. I am curious as to why Canon hasn't tapped this market. I really like the Nikkor 35mm 1.8 DX for a 'normal lens on her D90. Kind of Nikon's equivalent to a Nifty Fifty.

But to tell the truth, as a lifetime Canon user,other than owning a Nikon film camera in the 80's it was my first foray into shopping for Nikon products and I truly found the overall line lacking in variety and multiple pricepoints. It's either super expensive or dirt cheap.

neuroanatomist:
I expect it's because 'economical primes' would generally be considered consumer lenses, and the trend seems to be that most consumers prefer zoom lenses.  There's a reason Canon updated both the 18-55 IS and 55-250 IS lenses to essentially unchanged MkII versions that are slightly cheaper to produce - those zoom lenses are their bread and butter.  The 60mm macro is Canon's only EF-S prime. 

There may also be a marketing component - FF cameras are more expensive than APS-C cameras, so by having pretty much all the primes compatible with FF cameras, that may lower the inertial barrier to current APS-C customers going FF.  Keep in mind that while a DX lens can be used with a Nikon FF body, the same is not true for EF-S lenses.

weekendshooter:
The 35/1.8 DX is a really remarkable lens. Its main faults are lackluster construction and somewhat nervous bokeh, but aside from that it's a tremendously sharp, light, and cheap walkaround prime. The lack of anything in this price range for Canon is a main reason why I recommend Nikon to beginners who would likely only use the kit and at most one other lens.

I was nervous about Nikon's lens lineup before I switched, as I knew so much more about Canon's lenses, but it turns out to be quite fantastic for my tastes. The new line of f/1.8 G primes - 28, 50, 85 - is very very good and very well-priced. Now there is even a 70-200/4 IS with a new "5-stop" IS system, so that fills one of the main holes in the lineup as compared to Canon.

Nikon lacks the truly range-topping, whimsically fast L primes that Canon boasts, but their lens lineup is quite robust for those of us not in the market to spend $1500-2000 per lens. Moreover, Nikon's new lenses have been launching with much more reasonable MSRPs than Canon's latest offerings.

Edit: I have tried the 35 DX on my D700 and it works rather well indoors! It does vignette a bit, but not a great deal more than most fast 35's on full frame as long as the focusing distance is close and the aperture is wide. Trying to focus at infinity and stopping down crops the image at the corners, so it's impractical to own as a full frame user.

IronChef:
I want Canon to make an affordable 23mm f/2 EF-S as a walk around prime. I find the 56 mm equivalent focal length of the 35mm f/2 a bit too much. I know that they just released the 24mm f/2.8, but both the price and f-stop are a bit too high. A crop version might make it easier to design.

crasher8:
Well I for one, when I shot crop, would have bought a few.

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