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Top 10 Nikon Full Frame Lenses To Consider

By Justin Heyes on May 21st 2018

The Nikon F-mount was introduced in the late 1950s, and over the years the mount and bodies that work with it have evolved a little with the times by adding CPU contacts, AF motor drives, and 3D Matrix metering.

And while the D850 is the latest and greatest in a long line and brings with it the culmination and experience of other FX bodies, with its high-pixel-count, full fame 4K and the first BSI CMOS Sensor; it is often said that a camera is only as good as the glass you put in front of it. As such, Nikon does currently offer more than 70 lenses for its DSLRs, a collection just high enough to be perplexing to someone looking to invest in great glass. In one of his latest videos, Kai Wong offers his insight offering his list of Top 5 Nikon Full Frame Lenses.

[REWIND: Why Every Photographer Should Have A 24-70mm 2.8]

Kai’s List of Top 5 Nikon Full Frame Lenses

Third-party lens manufactures like Tamron, Sigma, and Tokina have stolen a bit of the spotlight when it comes to lenses for any system. Take the first lens from the list, the Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 FL as a prime example, as many photographers would rather pick up the Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 G2 for nearly the same functionality for a faction of the price.

Pushing the latest from the optical giant may be the best stance when confronted with the position that Kai is in, and the higher price of the the newest gear can often equate to quality, but the latest is not necessarily the greatest. Recommendations rely on context and experience of the recommender themselves.

Taking recommendations with a grain of salt is par for the course, but don’t let your bias be swayed by your favorite Youtuber, there are excellent full frame lenses that Nikon that has been offering for years that are well within the realm of affordability for most users, and we’ll list some out below.

Nikon AF Zoom-NIKKOR 80-200mm f/2.8D

[RELATED: When To Buy a 1.8 Lens Over a ‘Better’ 1.4 Lens]

Alternative Top 5 Nikon Full Frame Lenses

Again the argument is brought up witch is better a 1.8 vs a 1.4 lens, and again cost doesn’t equate to quality. The Nikon 58mm f/1.4 is one of the most overrated and over priced lenses that Nikon offers. Comparing it to the 50mm f/1.8 G you may lose 8mm and 0.7 stops of light, but you will have a faster focusing, sharper, and a better contrast lens, not to mention extra zeros in your bank account.

Nikon 85mm f/1.8G

About

Justin Heyes wants to live in a world where we have near misses and absolute hits; great love and small disasters. Starting his career as a gaffer, he has done work for QVC and The Rachel Ray Show, but quickly fell in love with photography. When he’s not building arcade machines, you can find him at local flea markets or attending car shows.

Explore his photographic endeavors here.

Website: Justin Heyes
Instagram: @jheyesphoto

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Motti Bembaron

    Can’t see the advantage of having the 58mm

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    • Matthew Saville

      It’s the “look”. The lens is simply very, very different than either the 50 1.4 or the 50 1.8. It’s certainly not worth the added price and weight for most shooters, however if you’re frequently shooting at f/1.4 and f/2, and looking for that special character to your bokeh, then it’s a winner.

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    • Matthew Saville

      (Having said that, I’m a fan of the 50 1.8 G, indeed.)

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    • Motti Bembaron

      I used to shoot 1.8 almost all the time when doing portraits (I have the 35mm, 50m and 85mm f/1.8 G). However, not having the best eyesight I had many misses. As you know, 1/2 inch off the eye and it’s most likely unusable image.

      I now use the 180mm f/2.8 for most of my outdoors portraits. It is such an excellent lens. Even at f/4.0 it has great comparison. The color rendering is just right and it’s a light lens to carry for a long period of time. No VR but I never go below 1/500s anyway.

      I saw comparison images between the 50mm f/1.4 and the 58mm and to be honest most did not show any difference. 

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  2. Matthew Saville

    That’s a ridiculously expensive “top 5” list, lol. Might as well call it the “5 most pricey lenses announced in recent years” list.

    Having said that, they’re all KILLER lenses, indeed.

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