Hacking the EOS
As I mentioned before, I like the feel of an 85mm /1.8 on my 35mm SLRs. On the Canon D300, the 50mm /1.8, with the 1.6× multiplier in effect, is almost the same lens an equivalent to an 80mm for the 35mm camera.
An awkward feature of that particular Canon EOS lens is its complete lack of distance scales. The 50mm /1.4 has them, but at a much, much higher cost. So I just wrote some on the side of my lens.
First I marked one of the knurled edges on the focus ring with an office white-out marker (model paint might have been better, but I didn't feel like digging that stuff out of the garage). Then I cut a scrap of cloth first-aid tape (which I also use for framing and matting) to the right length, with a notch for the MF/AF switch. Finally, I did some quick measurements in my kitchen, focused to the appropriate spots, and made marks on the tape with a ball-point pen for infinity, 10, 5, 2.5, and 1.5 feet. Close enough for wandering around shooting from the hip.
Total upgrade time: less than ten minutes. I'll happily sell this lens for $200, now that it has the cool /1.4 feature. That's cheap compared to Canon's price!
One thing that's missing is depth-of-field indicators. By my estimation, /22 markers would be quite close together about three notches, or a little bit less on each side than the distance between the infinity and 10-foot marks.
(PS: This later entry gives more detail on DoF for digital cameras. I realized I was slightly wrong the markers would need to be closer-together)