7 Best Nikon Standard Lenses in 2020

By Tati Taylor 14 days ago Cameras & Lenses

The best Nikon standard lenses for professional photographers.

nikon standard lens

If you are looking for worthy Nikon full frame lenses, then this article will help you choose the best options depending on your needs. Here, you will find the top lenses for different photography styles.

Top 7 Best Nikon Standard Lenses

  1. Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6E - Our Choice
  2. Nikkor Z 24-70mm F/2.8 S - Weather protection
  3. Nikon 50mm f/1.8 S - Amazing image quality
  4. Nikon 16-80mm f/2.8-4E - Compact
  5. Nikon 24mm f/1.8G - Nikon standard lens for DSLR
  6. Nikon 105mm f/1.4E - Perfect autofocus
  7. Nikon 14-30mm f/4 - For landscapes

The first step is to decide on the style of shooting, what you’re interested in, what you want to shoot, and in what conditions. Then, you can narrow your searches by looking at the products that suit you and help you achieve good results.

I have included two types that work for DSLRs, Nikon DX lenses, and FX (full-frame) options.

1. Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6E

Our Choice
nikon standard lens

Mount: F | Diaphragm blades: 9 | Autofocus: yes | Min focus distance: 1.2 m | Max magnification: 0.25x | Filter thread: 67mm | Dimensions (WxL): 80.5 x 146 mm | Weight: 680 g

⊕ Sharp enough
⊕ Impressive zoom range
⊕ Stabilized optics
⊕ Seamless and quiet autofocus
⊖ Dark angles at wider apertures
⊖ Poor light-gathering power
⊖ It’s not compatible with older SLRs

The AF-P Nikkor 70-300mm f / 4.5-5.6E ED VR is a Nikon standard lens compatible with both full-frame (FX) and APS-C (DX) cameras. For full-frame cameras, the lens delivers a large zoom range that covers a fairly long telephoto field of view. The overall image quality is good, although there are a couple of downsides, such as dark corners and soft edges at 70mm.

For DX (APS-C) cameras, the optimal field of view is 105-450mm, since the central area of the image circle is used. The lens will perfectly cope with shooting sports events, animals and various distance subjects.

Due to the DX housing, dim corners won’t spoil your experience. This lightweight Nikon lens performs fine for outdoor shooting in bright light and delivers a sharp image.

2. Nikkor Z 24-70mm F/2.8 S

Weather protection
nikon standard lens

Mount: Z | Diaphragm blades: 9 | Autofocus: yes | Min focus distance: 0.38 m | Max magnification: 0,22x | Filter thread: 82mm | Dimensions (WxL): Approximately 89.0 mm maximum diameter x 126.0 mm | Weight: 805 g

⊕ Sharpness
⊕ Unnoticeable distortion
⊕ 1:4.5 macro magnification
⊕ Weather-resistant
⊖ Noticeable vignette
⊖ Sensitive control ring
⊖ Telescoping design
⊖ High-priced

The Nikon Nikkor Z 24-70mm f / 2.8 S has excellent zoom. The lens offers good sharpness despite the demanding high-resolution image sensor, with subtle distortion across its zoom range. On the downside, this Nikkor lens has some issues with vignette, but you can fix them during image processing.

You will be satisfied with the build quality. Due to the fluorine coating, the lens stays clean. It is also weather-resistant. I cannot claim that the information display is very useful, but it doesn’t diminish the overall functionality.

This model has its downsides and can benefit from the improvement of the control ring system, still, the position and damping of the ring are excellent.

3. Nikon 50mm f/1.8 S

Amazing image quality
nikon dx lenses

Mount: Z | Diaphragm blades: 9 | Autofocus: yes | Min focus distance: 40 cm | Max magnification: 0.15x | Filter thread: 62mm | Dimensions (WxL): 76 x 86.5 mm | Weight: 415 g

⊕ Sharpness
⊕ F/1.8 design
⊕ No distortion
⊕ Dust and splash-resistant
⊖ Sensitive control ring
⊖ No fluorine coating
⊖ Vignette at wide aperture

The Nikkor Z 50mm f/1.8 S is the sharpest Nikon lens that will change the way you see 50mm f/1.8 lenses. It offers great performance with a bigger Z system mount, shorter flange spacing, raw image power, and video capabilities.

This lens offers precise and fast focusing due to its silent stepping motor and additional light that is gathered by the Z mount. Besides, the Nikkor Z 50mm offers high sharpness. This model is perfect for both photos and videos.

You won’t notice any signs of glare, ghosting or aberration, as 2 Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) lenses, 2 Aspherical (AS) lenses, and Nano Crystal coating eliminates them even at the far edges of the frame. Besides, the lens is resistant to moisture and dust.

4. Nikon 16-80mm f/2.8-4E

Compact
nikon full frame lenses

Mount: F | Diaphragm blades: 7 | Autofocus: yes | Min focus distance: 35 cm | Max magnification: 0.22x | Filter thread: 72mm | Dimensions (WxL): 80 x 85.5 mm | Weight: 480 g

⊕ Sharp enough
⊕ Portable
⊕ 5x optical zoom
⊕ Well-stabilized image
⊖ High-priced
⊖ Visible distortion
⊖ Soft edges

It is a Nikon standard lens with a high f/2.8-4 aperture, good VR image stabilization, and advanced technology. The lens captures a wide and portrait view while delivering high-quality images.

Nano Crystal coating helps to deal with flare. With extra-low dispersion glass and aspherical elements, you get improved sharpness and contrast with reduced color aberration. You can shoot handheld at up to 4 slower shutter speeds due to VR 16-80mm image stabilization. This will allow you to get more of the available light and avoid blur.

The latest fluorine coating on the front and rear lenses will save them from dirt, water, and dust. The lens has its weaknesses, as it does not provide a high-end picture from edge to edge and you might notice some distortion.

5. Nikon 24mm f/1.8G

Nikon standard lens for DSLR
nikon lens

Mount: F | Diaphragm blades: 7 | Autofocus: yes | Min focus distance: 23 cm | Max magnification: 0.2x | Filter thread: mm | Dimensions (WxL): 77.5 x 83 mm | Weight: 355 g

⊕ Sharpness
⊕ Reduced distortion
⊕ Focuses to 9.1 inches
⊖ Dull corners at wide apertures
⊖ No vibration reduction

Such Nikon DSLR lenses as the NIKKOR 24mm f / 1.8G ED expand your potential regardless of the camera type. You can take portraits, photos of landscapes, food, architecture, nature, and more.

The new model allows you to create high-quality photos and videos. Using a fast f/1.8 lens, a photographer can easily capture shots with shallow depth of field and soft background blur. Its small close focusing distance (just 0.23m) gives you more creative freedom.

This wide-angle lens has a compact and lightweight body, which makes it an essential travel companion. The Nikon fast lens delivers a perfect image without flare or distortion. The image will be quite sharp thanks to nano-crystal coating, extra-low dispersion glass, and aspherical lens elements.

6. Nikon 105mm f/1.4E

Perfect autofocus
nikon dslr lenses

Mount: F | Diaphragm blades: 9 | Autofocus: yes | Min focus distance: 1m | Max magnification: 0.13x | Filter thread: 82mm | Dimensions (WxL): 94.5 x 106 mm | Weight: 985 g

⊕ Super sharp
⊕ Unusual 105mm f/1.4 design
⊕ Copes with diffraction
⊖ Costly
⊖ Heavyweight
⊖ No image stabilization

The AF-S NIKKOR 105mm f / 1.4E ED is an all around lens for Nikon with optical precision and distortion correction. You will get high resolution throughout the entire frame. This lens is can be used with Nikon full-frame (FX) DSLRs.

This Nikon FX lens gathers a lot of light due to its high-speed aperture. You can use it for portraits or indoor photography. The lens is quite short, but it offers background defocusing and precise object isolation. If you are looking for a new lens to take high-quality photos and videos, this is the best option.

Three ED elements account for reduced chromatic aberration, ghosting, and flare. Nano Crystal coating is much better than conventional anti-reflection one as it allows for maximum contrast.

7. Nikon 14-30mm f/4

For landscapes
nikon fx lens

Mount: Z | Diaphragm blades: 7 | Autofocus: yes | Min focus distance: 28cm | Max magnification: 0.16x | Filter thread: 82mm | Dimensions (WxL): 89 x 85 mm | Weight: 485 g

⊕ Precise optics with small distortion
⊕ Portable
⊕ Dust and water-resistant
⊕ Front filter support
⊖ Sensitive control ring

This Nikon standard lens is a great travel companion due to its various features. It has a compact zoom range of 14 to 30mm with a fixed f/4 aperture for excellent picture quality. The lens is sharp even at a wide-open aperture.

You will also enjoy the virtually silent shooting experience. Due to the retractable mechanism, you can reduce the lens to 3.5 inches and lock it for easy transportation. You also get fast, quiet autofocus with the Nikon’s stepping motor (STM).

It is a durable, dust and moisture-resistant lens that is well-protected around all moving parts of the barrel. The lens is excellent at minimizing aberration, flare, and ghosting even at the far edges.

Image Name Features  
best nikon standard lens
Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6E
Our Choice
  • Mount: F
  • Diaphragm blades: 9
  • Autofocus: yes
  • Max magnification: 0,25x
CHECK PRICE
nikon standard lens
Nikkor Z 24-70mm F/2.8 S
Pro-grade
  • Mount: Z
  • Diaphragm blades: 9
  • Autofocus: yes
  • Max magnification: 0,25x
CHECK PRICE
nikon dx lenses
Nikon 50mm f/1.8 S
Prime
  • Mount: Z
  • Diaphragm blades: 9
  • Autofocus: yes
  • Max magnification: 0.15x
CHECK PRICE

How to Choose the Best Nikon Standard Lens?

nikon standard lens

Telephoto zoom

I advise you to buy Nikon telephoto lenses if you are photographing wildlife or sporting events from a long distance. Most users often start with these lenses.

Wide-angle zoom

Such lenses are suitable for those who want to capture more objects in the frame. While many photographers prefer using telephoto lenses, the wide-angle ones can also be useful when you are traveling. They are also great for narrow city streets and capturing architecture landmarks.

A better kit lens

With the kit lenses, you don’t have to choose between good quality, long-range or wide “constant” aperture because they are multifunctional. These cheap Nikon lenses are quite portable, which makes them perfect for trips. You need to change lenses in the future to achieve a wider focal length range, better quality or a constant maximum aperture.

Macro lens

They are suitable for capturing objects that are very close to you. While regular lenses can focus quite close, Macro lenses are better, as they are designed for close-up photography and deliver a clear image.

Portrait lens

The most suitable lenses to make your face stand out against the blurred background. Unlike conventional zoom lenses, portrait lenses with a wide maximum aperture make the background blurry, which fully transforms a photo.

FAQ

  • • What is the sharpest Nikon lens?

Not only is the Nikon 50mm f/1.8 D the cheapest lens, but it is also considered to be the sharpest one. It offers instant focus without distortion. Besides, you’re getting the smallest, lightest and fastest lens, that covers film and full FX frame.

  • • Is any lens suitable for a Nikon camera?

Almost any except older pre-1959 models. This is because of a Nikon-F mount, which was developed in 1959 and has not changed since then. Therefore, all lenses are compatible with film SLRs and DX/FX bodies.

  • • Does FX work better than DX?

It does. FX are full-frame lenses that have a large light-gathering area and deliver high sensitivity with minimal noise. DX cameras are suitable for both types of lenses because the non-DX lens image circle is bigger than required for a DX camera.

  • • Are there any differences between Nikon and Nikkor lenses?

Nikkor is a subsidiary of Nikon. It manufactures lenses. Nikon does not release lenses under its brand, but many sellers call the lenses “Nikon” to assure people that the lenses are compatible with Nikon cameras.

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