Best Lenses For Nikon D90 – 2020 Top Picks Reviewed

Nikon D90 was the first revolutionary Digital Single-Lens Reflex (DSLR) that was introduced for consumer usage in 2008. It was the first of its kind that allowed users to capture HD (720p) videos. Now, 12 years later, it is still a worthy product, having stood the test of time admirably.

A lot of innovative changes have happened during this period. Yet this camera has survived it all. It is still a great model that produces images that are equivalent to most of its successors. To make the most of this groundbreaking camera, you should pair it up with the right lens.

If you are worried about finding that right lens, we are here to help. In this article, we have rounded up the best lenses for Nikon D90. You can go through the products we have recommended and choose the ones that you think are more suitable for you.

Comparison Chart of the Best Nikon D90 Lenses

PRODUCTDETAILS
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Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G

  • 2 Extra-low Dispersion Elements
  • Focal Length Range of 55 - 300 mm
  • Exclusive Nikon Silent Wave Motor
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Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G

  • Offers manual focus override
  • Optimized for DX-format cameras
  • Perfect for low-light shooting
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Nikon AF FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8D

  • Best for the Money
  • Offers quick and precise focusing performance
  • Works well even in low-light situations
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Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 20mm f/1.8G

  • Best Nikon D90 Wide Angle Lens
  • Compact, lightweight and FX-format lens
  • Produces beautifully blurred backgrounds
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Nikon AF-S DX Micro-NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G

  • Best Nikon D90 Macro Lens
  • Sharp images from infinity to life-size
  • Close-Range Correction System
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Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 200-500mm f/5.6E

  • Best Nikon D90 Telephoto Lens
  • 4.5 stops of Vibration Reduction with Sports mode
  • Compact super telephoto zoom lens
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Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-300mm f/3.5-6.3G

  • Best Nikon D90 Zoom Lens
  • Angle of view from 76 degree to 5 degree 20'
  • Has a compact and balanced design
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Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Lens

  • Best Nikon D90 50mm Lens
  • Optimized for edge to edge sharpness
  • Optical system with Aspherical lens element
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Why You Should Consider Getting a New Nikon D90 Lens?

Nikon D90 is an interchangeable lens camera. This means you can change its lens to suit the kind of shots you want to take. For example, you cannot shoot wildlife with a portrait lens, and macro shots cannot be taken with a wide-angle zoom lens. Some competent photographers have successfully been shooting with a single lens. However, hobbyists can benefit more by getting new and different lenses. Here’s why.

Better Shots 

Investing in a variety of lenses means that you have the perfect lens for every kind of photo. This yields better shots as you can use a prime lens for taking portrait shots and a wide-angle for landscapes. You will notice an instant difference in the quality of the pictures.

Variety of Lenses 

Getting new lenses for your Nikon D90 gives you the advantage of having a variety. If you somehow manage to damage your original lens, you can replace it with one from your collection. The whole point of an interchangeable lens camera is to use it with a variety of lenses.

Better Zoom

Buying new lenses for your Nikon D90 gets more advantageous when you get a wide-angle zoom or macro lens. These provide better zoom for your wide-angle scenic pictures and flower or insect photography.

Long-Lasting

Purchasing quality lenses is a lasting investment. For whatever reasons, if you do decide to replace your Nikon D90, you can still use the lenses with other camera bodies. With technological advancement, new camera models are regularly hitting the market. Lenses, on the other hand, get better with age. So buying new ones for your Nikon D90 is an investment that will outlast your DSLR.

How to Choose the Perfect Lens

Before we start, let’s get something straight. A perfect lens does not exist. You will come across a sharper, higher contrast, less distorting, fast focusing, or a lighter lens. Finding one that is better in all these areas is not possible. Also, you are almost always going to find a lens that is better in one or more aspects than the one you buy. But remember, if it is better in some things, it will lack in others. So the important thing in choosing lenses is to choose those that are more compatible with your kind of photography. Here is a comprehensive guide to choosing lenses for your Nikon D90.

Focal Length

The focal length of a lens is the distance between the lens and the sensor when the subject is in focus. It is measured in millimeters. The greater the focal length, the higher the zoom, and the lower the focal length, the wider the shot. Choose a lens with a focal length according to the kind of shot you plan to take with it.

Aperture 

The aperture represents how much light can enter your camera. It is denoted by an f with some corresponding numbers. The smaller the number, the wider the opening. This enables more light to enter the camera, enabling it perfect for shooting in a low light situation. Choose your new lens according to the conditions you are going to shoot in.

Prime or Zoom Lens

Prime lenses are lenses with fixed focal lengths. Using it, you cannot zoom in or out. While zoom lenses do offer flexibility, prime lenses provide the ultimate image quality. Prime lenses not only incorporate more brightness in your shots, but they also enable you to adjust and improve shooting errors. Zoom lenses are better at taking great up-close shots. Depending on your usage, you can choose a lens that best meets your requirements.

Price

Who does not like the idea of having a full range of lenses that enables them to take the perfect shots? But the fact is quality lenses don’t come cheap. Buying a lens for every kind of shot requires a lot of time and effort. If you have just started out, we recommend buying one lens at a time, prioritizing the kind of photography you are into. For example, if you want portrait shots, opt for a prime lens, and if you like shooting landscapes, you are better off with a wide-angle zoom lens.

Quick Take - Best Lenses For Nikon D90

Before we dive into our review, here are the best Nikon D90 lenses:

  1. Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G
  2. ​​Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G
  3. Nikon AF FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8D

Review of the Best Nikon D90 Lenses

Buying new lenses is not an easy task. You come across lenses of all sizes and features. Deciding on one to buy is a tough decision unless you know what you are looking for. Fortunately, to assist you in your quest, we have rounded up the best interchangeable lenses for Nikon D90. Below is a detailed account of the lenses that we think ​are good options to consider.

Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED Vibration Reduction Zoom Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • It has excellent optical performance 
  • Offers a high power telephoto zoom
  • Lightweight and easy to carry around
  • Built-in vibration reduction technology
  • Features an extra-low dispersion glass for little to no chromatic aberration

CONS

  • Auto-focus is slow for shooting action
  • Manual focus does not work very well
  • You have to move a switch to move between auto and manual focus modes

What Recent Buyers Report

People who recently opted for this lens are raving about it for its excellent all-around performance. It is highly appreciated for its crisp and clear photos. Photographers report that it has slow auto-focus, but this greatly improves its auto-focus accuracy. Users also like it for its effective vibration reduction that produces super clear and detailed shots.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera lens stands out to us for its best all-around performance. It can capture awesome up-close shots as well as extremely crisp and detailed landscape pictures. With its accurate auto-focus and vibration reduction technology, you will get an accurate image every time you use it. It is equipped with an extra-low dispersion glass that keeps chromatic aberration at bay. All in all, it’s a great lens that will serve most of your photographic purposes.

Who Will Use This Most

Hobbyists who are looking for a lens that gives them a proper all-around performance will love using this one. Photographers who are specialists in taking portrait shots and scenic landscapes will also like having it in their arsenal. People who are new to photography will also benefit from using this lens with their interchangeable lens camera. 

Bottom Line

This is a great lens for a Nikon D90. With its best overall performance, you are bound to use it more often than the kit lens. It has a great Bokeh character that makes the background out of focus. The objects appear beautiful, soft, and not bothersome at all. If you are considering to buy a new lens for your camera, we recommend you seriously consider this one as it has all the right qualities of a good camera lens. 

Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • It has a compact, lightweight design
  • It has a fast, accurate and silent auto-focus
  • Perfect for shooting in low light conditions 
  • An affordable high-performance prime lens
  • Makes out of focus elements appear more natural

CONS

  • Prone to color fringing
  • It has obvious barrel distortion
  • Slight propensity of chromatic aberration

What Recent Buyers Report

This lens is hugely acclaimed for its working in low light and evening conditions. However, during bright sunny settings, it is reported to be seriously problematic. Besides that, it has addressed the needs of people looking for an affordable prime lens. People like it for its excellent build quality and weather resistance.

Why it Stands Out to Us

For us, this lens stood out for its affordable price and low weight. It is an exceptional prime lens that works great in low light conditions or night-time setups. It had fast auto-focus that captures quietly and accurately. Its bokeh factor makes backgrounds appear natural and soft while maintaining the spotlight on the focused subject. It also pairs well with a Nikon D90 camera. 

Who Will Use This Most

Since this lens is most suitable for low light conditions, people who have to work in such setups will reap huge benefits while using this product. Photographers who are looking for an affordable prime lens to add to their collection will also like using this product. People who want a lens with accurate and fast auto-focus are likely to use this the most. 

Bottom Line

All in all, this is an incredible lens to pair with a Nikon D90. Manufactured by the same brand, it is mounted with the standard F lens mount making it compatible for all Nikon DSLR cameras. It has a compact design, making it suitable to carry around with you. It is a prime lens so you can take stunning portrait and landscape shots with. We assure you that this is a great replacement for your kit lens.

Nikon AF FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8D Lens for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • Takes very sharp and clear shots
  • Very suitable to take on traveling trips 
  • One of the most affordable prime lens
  • It effectively isolates subjects from the background
  • Captures with a perspective that appears normal to our eyes 

CONS

  • It is prone to FEE error
  • Not suitable for close-up portrait photography
  • Causes sun flares when used outside in bright lighting

What Recent Buyers Report

People who recently bought this lens report it to have a spectacular performance. It has rocked the photography world with its clarity and picture quality. Users say that it takes regular images and makes them smooth and beautiful. However, people who paired it with DX camera report that its auto-focus does not function as the ‘nifty fifty’ it claims to be. Despite that, users loved their purchase. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This lens stands out to us for its affordability. Coming at a low price does not mean it lacks in any way. It has a durable and lightweight build that makes it a perfect choice for traveling purposes. It produces a sharp image that has amazing clarity that appears natural to our eyes. Its accurate focus easily separates the subject from the background, increasing its bokeh factor. With all the great features combined, it surely is an amazing lens. 

Who Will Use This Most

Beginners who have just started photography and do not want to spend too much on buying lenses are likely to use this the most. People who want a lightweight lens that is easy to carry around will also like using it. Photographers who want to capture sharp and clear pictures will also put it to great use. 

Bottom Line

Overall, this is a very cheap and affordable lens. It is a prime lens that is good for portraits and landscape photography. Its auto-focus is restricted to some camera models. But on those that it does work on, it is very fast and accurate. It produces the sharpest images that are quite clear and detailed. It has a wonderful bokeh factor, making the pictures beautiful and stunning. All in all, for its cost, it certainly is one of the best prime lenses you can get. 

Best Nikon D90 Wide Angle Lens:
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 20mm f/1.8G

Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 20mm f/1.8G ED Fixed Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • Lacks focus shift and wavy field curvature
  • Equipped with a fast, accurate and quiet auto-focus
  • Rear focus helps set auto-focus without moving the lens 
  • Coated with Nano Crystal Coat to reduce ghosting and flare 
  • Primarily designed for landscape, architecture, astrophotography and environmental portraits

CONS

  • It has a low quality feel to it
  • Not very sealed against weather

What Recent Buyers Report

People who have recently purchased this lens, report that it produces amazingly wide and sharp images. Users say that although it lacks the luster of a high-end lens, it exhibits an equally impressive result. Amateur photographers have also been able to take professional-looking shots with it. Buyers have also been saying that it seems like its specialty tailored to address their specific needs. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This DSLR camera lens stands out to us for its superior wide-angle performance. It captures sharp and clear wide-angle images that are delightful to look at. It is equipped with a rear focus that provides smooth and fast auto-focus without changing the lens length and barrel settings. It is coated with Nikon’s Nano Crystal Coat and Super Integrated Coating, which reduces flare and enhances color consistency. If you are looking for a wide-angle lens for your Nikon D90, we recommend that you get this one. 

Who Will Use This Most

People who are avid landscape and natural scenery photographers are likely to use this the most. Users who want to get clear astrophotographs will also benefit from using it. Photographers who cannot afford the more expensive high-quality lens but want similar results will also put this one to great use. 

Bottom Line

This is the best wide-angle lens for your Nikon D90. Using it will yield wide, sharp, and clear shots. It has wonderful rear auto-focus that is fast, noiseless, and accurate. It is great for photographing landscapes, architecture, and environmental portraits. It also has a great capacity for astrophotography. It is coated with Nikon’s innovative coats that also enhance its performance. To conclude, we say that this is the perfect lens for wider shots. 

Best Nikon D90 Macro Lens:
Nikon AF-S DX Micro-NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G

Nikon AF-S DX Micro-NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G Close-up Lens for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • It has a good quality build
  • A compact and lightweight design
  • Suitable for taking high-quality stills
  • Comes with an amazing bokeh factor
  • Features a dust and waterproof mount

CONS

  • Not suitable for indoor usage 
  • Auto-focus can be slow at times
  • Lacks a lot in vibration reduction 

What Recent Buyers Report

Photographers who recently bought this say that it is a versatile lens that takes you closer than any other. Although it is specially designed for macro photography, users say that it is capable of every kind of photography except shooting in very low light without flash. People also like it for its amazing bokeh factor that takes macro photography to a whole new level.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This lens stands out to us as the best macro lens for a Nikon D90. With its sturdy and compact design, it produces pictures that have excellent contrast and sharpness. It has low distortion, chromatic aberration, and falloff. For a macro lens, it is reasonably priced and is good to be used by beginners who want to try their hand at macro photography. It has a wonderful bokeh factor that makes its subject stand out without making the background bothersome. Overall, it’s highly recommended if you are looking for a macro lens. 

Who Will Use This Most

People who are new to macro photography and want to try their hand at it first will benefit from using this product. Hobbyists who are looking for a versatile all-around performer are likely to use this the most. Photographers who don’t mind working at short distances will also put this lens to great use. 

Bottom Line

We find this to be a great choice for anyone looking to invest in a lens that has a versatile approach. It produces sharp and clear images with a great bokeh factor that sets them apart. It captures high-quality stills. Because of its lightweight design, it is not a burden to hold. It’s little to no distortion, and lack of color aberration is proof of its quality. It’s a product surely worth your notice. 

Best Nikon D90 Telephoto Lens:
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 200-500mm f/5.6E

Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 200-500mm f/5.6E ED Vibration Reduction Zoom Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • It has a fast and constant aperture
  • Features excellent image stabilization
  • Has a closer focusing distance than its rivals
  • Can easily capture subjects near or far, fast or slow
  • Perfect for capturing detailed images of faraway subjects

CONS

  • It has a slow focus in low light
  • Has a comparatively lower zoom range 
  • It is heavy to hold for longer periods of time

What Recent Buyers Report

Recent buyers of this lens report that it is a good balance in price and cost for its range and performance. It is said to have no focus issues along all lengths and f-stops. With its smaller size for a telephoto lens, it has become the first choice of most users. Although it has a lesser zoom range than most of its rivals, it has still become a favorite in telephoto lenses

Why it Stands Out to Us

This is the best telephoto lens for a Nikon D90. For a telephoto lens, it is surprisingly affordable and lightweight. It yields extremely detailed and sharp images of distant or fast-moving subjects. It is equipped with the vibration reduction technology that renders its shots excellent stability. If you are planning a wildlife trip or attending a sporting event, this is the perfect lens to capture the most action-packed and beautiful stills. 

Who Will Use This Most

People who are looking for a lighter and cost-friendly telephoto lens are likely to use this the most. Those who have the job of shooting sporting activity or any other fast pace event will also benefit from using it. Photographers who want to take detailed shots of subjects that are quite far will also like using it. 

Bottom Line

This is the best telephoto lens to pair with a Nikon D90. With its constant aperture and excellent zoom, you can capture stunning shots of any subject, be it fast, slow, near, or far. With its vibration reduction, it produces high-quality stable images. You can use it to capture anything from a solar eclipse, to wildlife, to sports. It is a versatile lens with sharp and clear results. All in all, it’s a great lens for you to consider buying. 

Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-300mm f/3.5-6.3G ED Vibration Reduction Zoom Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • It offers amazing image stability
  • Has a full-time manual focus mode 
  • Versatile lens with a zoom ratio of 16 
  • The zoom action is smooth and consistent
  • Auto-focus mode is fast, accurate, and noiseless 

CONS

  • It has a variable aperture
  • Extends or retracts while focusing
  • Not protected with a weather sealant 

What Recent Buyers Report

Photographers, whether professional or hobbyists, all agree that this lens produces high-quality and stable images. It is regarded as one of the best zoom lenses because of its smooth and consistent zoom. Some users like it for its built-in auto-focus, others like using its manual focus mode to operate it. Both types of users report that its shots are very sharp and detailed. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This model stands out to us as the best zoom lens for the Nikon D90 camera. It has a smooth zoom with accurate auto-focus. This helps users take excellent shots of faraway objects. It is a convenient choice for those who don’t want to mess with too many lens changes. You can use it for your travel expeditions as well as casual everyday photography. It also yields satisfying results in terms of image quality. 

Who Will Use This Most

Photographers who want an all-in-one lens that will satisfy all their photographic needs will benefit from using this lens. People who like taking a shot of fairway subjects will also put it to great use. Hobbyists who like photographing everything they come across are also likely to use this the most. 

Bottom Line

To conclude, we will say that this lens is surely a great choice if you are looking to upgrade the kit lens of your Nikon D90. With its excellent zoom and image stabilization, you are bound to get a clear and sharp shot every time you use it. However, it is not weather-sealed, so you have to be very careful about keeping it safe from harsh weather conditions. 

Best Nikon D90 50mm Lens:
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Lens

Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G Lens

PROS

  • Image quality is very clear and sharp
  • It has a high-quality lightweight build
  • Offers little to no chromatic aberration 
  • Cost-effective lens that comes at a low price 
  • Outstanding optical performance when stopped down

CONS

  • Barrel distortion is a bit too strong
  • Its hyper-focal makes it difficult to use
  • Lacks vibration reduction and an aperture ring

What Recent Buyers Report

People who recently purchased this lens report it as an excellent addition to their arsenal. With an initial impression of high-quality, it has lived up to the expectations of its buyers. Users like it for its optical performance in low light settings. There are more than enough good things said about this lens. From its soft bokeh to its impressive clarity, everything has satisfied its users. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This lens stands out to us as the best 50mm lens for Nikon D90. With its low price and high-quality imagery, it is surely a great addition to your lens arsenal. It has a durable, high-quality build that ensures that you have a reliable lens with you everywhere you go. It is lightweight and easy to carry around with you, making it a great choice to replace your kit lens with. 

Who Will Use This Most

Amateur photographers who are hunting for a trusty, multi-use lens that can give them blurry backgrounds with a soft bokeh effect are likely to use this the most. People who are looking for a lens that has zero edge artifacts will also like using it. Users who want a sharp and clear image every time they shoot will also be fit from using this 50mm lens

Bottom Line

All in all, this is the best 5mm lens that you can pair up with your Nikon D90. It produces sharp and crisp images with higher contrast than the kit lens. You can use it for a number of photographic applications. With its little to no chromatic aberration, it stands out as a high performer among its counterparts. All in all, it’s a great buy for its overall value. 

What Do I Need To Know Before Buying? 

Nikon D90 is a handsome camera. It is perfectly capable of taking beautiful shots. To improve its image quality, you can pair it with a number of lenses. These lenses are specially designed for specific situations. Although you can use just one lens for taking any shot, it is better to invest in some new lenses to yield better results. However, there are a number of things you should know before heading out to make your purchase.

Budget

The most important thing to know before spending is your own budget. Quality camera lenses are expensive. Buying new lenses to improve your photography skills is good, but going broke to do so is not the right way to do it. Before deciding on a specific lens, learn its price and your budget. If it is a match, you are good to buy it.

Brand

There are a number of great camera lens brands, each boasting an extensive range of quality camera lenses. But not all brand lenses are compatible with a Nikon D90. It features the standard F lens mount. Look for a lens brand that produces lenses capable of mounting on an F lens mount. It is also important to know about some reputable and respected brands so you can reap the benefits a good brand offers.

Reviews

Now is the age of networking. People look up to the internet for everything. They like posting about a lot of things, especially the new things they have bought and how they are holding up. Before buying a new lens for your Nikon D90, we recommend checking the reviews of potential products. This way, you will have a better knowledge of what lens is as good as it claims. Reviews can also help you shortlist a number of candidates. 

Kind of Photography

Before buying a new lens, it is important to know what kind of shots you are planning to take with it. If you are more into scenery, then a wide-angle lens is your choice. If you want up-close shots of small things like insects, then macro lenses will work best. If you want to capture portraits, then a prime lens is your choice, and so on. Knowing about the kind of photography helps you narrow down your choices. 

Conclusion

Nikon D90 has proven the saying old is gold. It is still a good camera that produces excellent shots. Pair it up with the right lens, and you have shots that are as good as any recent camera. Choosing the right lens is not as easy as it sounds. You have to look at the price and the different features they offer. Quality lenses are a bit expensive, but they sure are worth investing in. We have listed some of the best and most compatible lenses for Nikon D90. These will help you narrow down the right one for you from such a vast range of products. Choosing any of these will also ensure you have the best lens to assist you in your endeavors.