Nikon lenses are sure to be in high demand, given the company is one of the two photography giants. Whether you are a beginner looking to upgrade from your kit lens, or a seasoned photographer searching for the next optical upgrade, there’s a wide selection of Nikon lenses at your disposal.
Sometimes it’s hard to find the best Nikon lens in a sea of options, so we are making the task easier by curating a list of the very best Nikon glass in the market.
Editor’s note: This list of the best Nikon lenses will be updated regularly as new products launch.
The best Nikon DSLR lenses
1. Nikon AF-S FX Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G
My Nikon 50mm f/1.8 lens is by far my most valuable investment in photography
My 50mm f/1.8 is by far my most valuable investment in photography — I shoot about 70% of my photos with it. These prime lenses have great image quality. The 50mm focal length is ideal for many purposes, and the f/1.8 aperture is plenty fast. Most importantly, these 50mm f/1.8 lenses tend to be insanely affordable. This is the cheapest lens on this list, and it is definitely one of the best Nikon lenses you can get. We believe every photographer should have this Nikon lens.
2. Nikon AF-S VR Micro-NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED
Everyone needs a good macro lens in their camera bag. Macro lenses allow the shooter to focus at very close distances, and this Nikon lens has a minimum focus distance of 1.03ft. That is very close, considering the focal length is 105mm.
This is great for getting close-up shots of everything, but it is also amazing for general photography and portraits. Not to mention its f/2.8 aperture and long focal distance create beautiful bokeh. Though it is not a cheap Nikon lens, it is an industry favorite and costs under a grand.
3. Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED
If you want the absolute best wide-angle Nikon lens and money is no impediment, this one is a total jewel. This lens comes with a 14-24mm focal length and an f/2.8 non-variable aperture. This means the aperture doesn’t close up as you zoom in. This is the first lens of what photographers call the “holy trinity” of lenses, which is a collection of three lenses that should be in every pro photographer’s repertoire. The other two are right below.
4. Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED VR
The 24-70mm f/2.8 is the holy grail of Nikon lenses.
The 24-70mm f/2.8 is considered the holy grail of Nikon lenses. Any professional has or wants this beauty for its great glass and wide f/2.8 aperture. The 24-70mm focal length is also great for most general photography purposes. It doesn’t get much better than this Nikon lens, but be prepared to pay a pretty penny for it.
5. Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR
While we are listing the best Nikon lenses money can buy, the company also offers a super expensive f/2.8 lens with a 70-200mm focal length.
Related: The best DSLR cameras you can buy
This is the third lens in the “holy trinity,” and it’s amazing. Glass quality is superb, and it allows you to get very close to faraway subjects while keeping an f/2.8 aperture all through the focal spectrum.
The best Nikon mirrorless lenses
1. Nikon Z 50mm f/1.8 S
Mirrorless cameras are the future of photography, and those with a Nikon Z camera have newer, smaller lens options to choose from. If you are looking to invest in Nikon lenses using the Z mount, our first recommendation is a 50mm f/1.8 prime.
The 50mm focal length is the closest to what the human eye can see, and these Nikon lens offers great image quality, even if this product is not as cheap as its DSLR counterpart. If money is absolutely no object, we would also recommend the Nikon Z 50mm f/1.2 S, which just goes wild with the aperture!
2. Nikon Z 24-70mm F/2.8 S
Get your wallets ready because this high-end Z mount Nikon lens won’t come cheap! It costs well over two grand but offers the ideal 24-70mm focal length and an f/2.8 non-variable aperture. It is also smaller than its DSLR counterpart, but image quality continues to trump everything else. It’s the favorite focal range out of the holy trinity, so if you’re going to splurge on any lens, it might as well be this one.
3. Nikon Z 70-200mm f/2.8 VR S
Nikon mirrorless cameras can zoom in too, you just need the right lens, and this is one of the best Nikon lenses when it comes to telephoto options. The constant f/2.8 aperture is very nice for a lens that can zoom so much, and it will create some gorgeous imagery for portraits, too, offering smooth bokeh and a great perspective.
4. Nikon Z MC 105mm f/2.8 VR S
Macro lenses are very important for close-up photos, and Nikon now has a great option for its mirrorless cameras. Aside from the 105mm focal length and great f2.8 aperture, this lens has plenty to offer. You get VR for minimizing shaking blur, and it has the ability to focus as close as 0.29m. It will be great for shooting insects, small objects, and other subjects up close.
5. Nikon Z 58mm f/0.95 S Noct
We left the Nikon Z 58mm f/0.95 S Noct for the end because, while it’s one of the best Nikon lenses, it’s also meant for a very particular crowd of photographers. This is by far the most expensive lens on this list, mostly due to its insane f/0.95 aperture and quality glass. It’s one of the lenses with the widest aperture in the market, which will be enticing to bokeh lovers and nighttime shooters. There is one major caveat, though; it has no autofocus. You’ll have to focus manually!
That’s it for our list of the best Nikon lenses you can currently buy. Happy shooting!
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