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Nikon 16-35/4 VR and 17-35/2.8 (not to scale)  
Nikon 85mm f/1.4G

Flare: 85/1.4G vs 85/1.8G

I mounted both the 85/1.4G and 85/1.8G on the Nikon D800E and scrutinized the flare behavior, placing the sun just outside the frame in the corners, along the edges, rotating the angle of the camera, etc.

I came to two general conclusions:

As a practical matter, it appeared to me that the 85/1.8G is the overall winner on flare, and that both lenses fare badly if a bright light source (outside the image) strafes the front lens element. Shading the lens offers a huge improvement in this regard. Since the lens hood is round, it might be possible to apply tape to square off the coverage of the hood for critical applications.

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