Best Nikon FX Lenses – 2020 Complete Round-up

Are you on the hunt for the best Nikon FX lenses? If so, then you're at the right place!

This guide will help you determine which FX lens is more suitable for your photography needs.

If you’re interested in getting the scoop of the best ones in the market, then keep on reading. 

Comparison Chart of the Best Nikon FX Lenses

PRODUCT DETAILS
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Nikon AF-S VR Micro-NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8G

  • Versatile for any kind of photography, making it the best overall
  • Internal focus allows for speedy autofocus without altering lens’ length
  • Nano crystal coating reduces flare, and ED elements minimize aberrations
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Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G

  • VR 2 image stabilization feature
  • Equipped with two ED elements and one aspherical lens
  • Sharpness on both DX and FX formats, making it the runner-up
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Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED

  • 14-24mm focal length which delivers superb performance
  • 2x ultra-wide zoom ratio, making it the best for the money
  • Equipped with ED elements, nano-crystal coating, and aspherical lenses
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Sigma 12-24mm f/4 DG

  • Functions at f/4 throughout the entire focal range
  • Equipped with FLD glass elements for supreme image quality
  • Lens has zero distortion, making it the best wide-angle lens for Nikon FX
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Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E

  • Minimum focal distance this lens achieves is 1.2 ft.
  • Non-stick front glass to ensure protection from dust, etc.
  • Best Nikon zoom lens FX with handheld shooting with 4 shutter stops of VR
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Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G

  • Autofocus is ultrasonic with manual focusing
  • Provides natural-looking, astonishing quality images
  • Can go up to F16 minimum aperture, making it the best Nikon prime lens FX
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Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G

  • 7-blade diaphragm is for out-of-focus subjects
  • Silent wave motor equipped for fast and silent autofocus
  • Equipped with Aspherical lens to minimize aberrations, making it the best 35 mm lens for Nikon FX
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Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G

  • Focal distance is about 15 feet
  • Comes with 2 ED elements and 3 Aspherical lenses
  • Has a 5x zoom feature, making it the best Nikon travel lens FX
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Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 85mm f/1.4G

  • Minimum focus distance of this lens is 3 feet
  • M/A mode can switch easily from manual to automatic operation
  • Gives you sharpness on all edges, making it the best Nikon portrait lens FX
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What is an FX Lens?

An FX lens is a type of lens produced by Nikon. It is essentially a format of image sensors that allow the lens to perform. The FX-format of lenses is also called a full-frame format. These lenses are bigger than DX lenses, which are crop sensor lenses. Their size is approximately 36mm by 24mm. You can see more views and scenes on the full-frame sensor of FX lenses compared to the DX ones. Professionals who require greater views and finer quality from their images usually invest in FX lenses. 

How Do I Choose an FX Lens?

FX lenses are usually designed for professionals, as they tend to be more expensive. There are several features you should consider before getting an FX lens. These include:

Focal Length

You need to decide whether your lens should be fixed or zoomable. Fixed focal lenses do not allow the lens to be rotated while taking a picture. An example of this could be that if there is no range on your lens, then it is a fixed lens that can only take pictures at a particular focal length, say 50mm. However, ranges such as 24mm-120mm allow the photographer to capture the images at different focal lengths. 

The Kind of Photography

You also need to determine what kind of photography you’re into. If you’re into landscape photography, you need to look for wide-angle FX lens options. If you're interested in portrait photography, then prime lenses should be your first pick. 

Lens Speed

The speed of the shutter is also a very important factor to consider before buying an FX lens. Speed means the maximum aperture the lens can achieve. If you get a lens with a wide aperture, it will permit more light in the image sensor and narrow depth of field, and vice versa. 

Quick Take - Best Nikon FX Lenses

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

  1. Nikon AF-S VR Micro-NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8G
  2. Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G
  3. ​Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED

Review of the Best Nikon FX Lenses

Now that you have read about the factors you should consider before buying an FX lens, let’s look at the top ten available in the market to help you decide which is best for your photography type. 

Nikon AF-S VR Micro-NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED Lens

PROS

  • Works flawlessly in low-light conditions
  • SIC allows the picture to have consistent colors throughout
  • Silent Wave Motor (SWM) technology that takes pictures quietly
  • Vibration-Reduction II Technology to shoot videos and render the bokeh
  • Nano Crystal Coat and ED to enhance photography and clarity of the image

CONS

  • Lens is not zoomable
  • Users may experience some vignetting at f/2.8
  • Does not work well for short distance photography

What Recent Buyers Report

Users report that it’s a highly versatile camera lens and can truly outperform any of your other lenses. It not only takes stunning photos at the macro level but also captures the most amazing portraits. Its bokeh rendering is fabulous, and there is no distortion when you use it to take pictures. Overall, users recommend it to all kinds of photographers, keeping in mind its versatility.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This lens is designed with the sturdiest build in order to operate in any condition. It also produces fabulous shots in low lighting. Optical stabilization is also embedded in it, which allows for high-quality results with minimal effort. Overall, it is efficient and highly dependable.

Who Will Use This Most

Professionals who are serious about pursuing a career in photography will love this camera lens. It takes in the littlest details of the scene and refines the quality to make the image seem life-like. The texture and details on this are just unbelievable, especially for macro purposes, where you would want to take close-ups of certain subjects.

Bottom Line

This is, without a doubt, the best FX lens you can find for an FX camera. The image quality is spectacular, and it focuses on the subject by blurring the background so that it seamlessly blends in, making it look super-real and stunning. There is no distortion and the Nano Crystal coating reduces chromatic aberrations, as well.

Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED Vibration Reduction Zoom Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • Super-versatile with a 107x zoom
  • Compared to other lenses, this one is really compact
  • Delivers high-quality images throughout the zoom range
  • Equipped with vibration reduction and optical stabilization
  • Can cover a range of lengths to get the best quality picture

CONS

  • The lens itself is quite heavy
  • Distortion level of the images is too high
  • At maximum apertures, it delivers soft edges

What Recent Buyers Report

This lens is elegant, sophisticated, and helps you compose your images in a way that other lenses can’t. The optical image stabilization feature allows it to deliver careful, beautiful images and performs outstandingly in sunlight. It’s not a prime lens, but it can take photos as crisp as any prime lens.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The 107x zoom on this lens is phenomenal and its vibration reduction feature allows you to take handheld shots up to four shutter speeds slower than possible. In turn, this ensures that each image has depth and clarity that makes every picture unique and consistently stellar.

Who Will Use This Most

This camera lens is designed for landscape photographers who love taking images of different scenes. It is also surprisingly amazing for portraits and gives soft backgrounds when needed. It shines best when used in the sunlight, however, it works flawlessly in low-light, as well. Overall, it can take shots of close-ups as well as distant subjects.

Bottom Line

If you're looking for an amazing lens that has a different take than all other Nikon lenses, then this one is for you. It’s a versatile lens that works amazingly with a wide focal length range and is suited best for landscape and portrait photography, and is a great travel companion, as well.

Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED

PROS

  • The focus can reach up to 10.8 inches
  • Internal Focus (IF) for blazing fast and silent auto-focus
  • Nano-crystal coating for reduced ghost effects and sharp clarity
  • Two ED elements and PGM lens that promise high contrast images
  • Weather-resistant build to protect it from damage due to dust and moisture

CONS

  • Some level of chromatic aberration
  • Sturdy and heavy lens to carry about
  • Wide-angle distortion can be disappointing

What Recent Buyers Report

Users reported that the pictures taken with this lens had the right balance between colors and contrasts, which allowed them to consider it one of the best lenses they ever owned in the FX range, especially for its price. They also state that the image integrity is flawless and the picture quality is stellar.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Most lenses face challenges when ensuring even quality images at every corner of the photo. However, this lens makes sure that the edge-to-edge frame has consistent quality, which makes the image resolution absolutely stunning.

Who Will Use This Most

This lens is recommended for architectural or landscape photography. It is specially designed for photographers that indulge in taking night shots of stars and constellations, as well as the aurora borealis. It also works spectacularly in low-light conditions, so you don’t have to worry about the timing.

Bottom Line

The lens will give you image quality you’ve never experienced before, and for the money, it is the best FX lens that you could possibly get. It doesn’t give you any harsh lines or bothersome sharpness, rather, it decreases the sharpness such that it doesn’t reduce the image quality but enhances the overall image.

Best Wide-Angle Lens for Nikon FX:
Sigma 12-24mm f/4 DG

Sigma 12-24mm f/4 DG HSM Art Lens for Nikon F (205955)

PROS

  • Performs amazing in low-light
  • Zero distortion in every image that it captures
  • Image quality of this lens is stellar at every shot
  • Auto-focus system is luxuriously fast and speedy
  • Lens comes weather-sealed for harsh conditions

CONS

  • Post-production time is a little slow
  • Big and bulky, making it heavy to carry around
  • Operates only on f4, which could be bothersome for some photographers

What Recent Buyers Report

Users state that the lines of the image all fit into the lens frame without any barrel distortion. The flaring of the image is low and this camera lens does not give any chromatic aberration. It can fix vignettes that may arise in images and corrects distortion instantly to give beautiful, tack-sharp images each time. Therefore, buyers are quite in love with it and recommend it to others too.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The high-quality features of this lens make it exquisite. In fact, it is every photographer’s dream, as it has FLD glass elements to provide stellar image quality and an HSM that allows for speedy and quick auto-focus. It also comes with a huge focusing ring with many manual settings so you can adjust anything.

Who Will Use This Most

The high shutter speeds make it an easy choice for photographers who like to capture quick-moving subjects. Moreover, it is ideal for many different kinds of photography, such as landscape, interior, and architectural photography. It has it all and brings every image you take to life.

Bottom Line

If you're looking for an amazing lens that has no distortion and gives you clear images of every scene that you want to capture, then go ahead and buy this one. Its build quality is on another level, keeping in mind the mount dust and splash-proof. It is a fast and professional lens that will blow your mind every time you take a shot.

Best Nikon Zoom Lens FX:
 Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E

Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED Vibration Reduction Zoom Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • Delivers creamy and stunning bokeh
  • Brand new ASP/ED element to deliver optical precision
  • Weather-resistant and can operate in challenging situations
  • Delivers sharpness at every edge with amazing color contrasts
  • 4 shutter stops ensure sharp and steady videos and images, which boosts versatility

CONS

  • Needs a huge bag to put it in since the lens is huge
  • Bulky and large to carry around for long periods of time
  • Not that great for portrait photography as compared to other lenses

What Recent Buyers Report

This lens will provide you with buttery images you can only dream of. It transforms your vision into reality, with a great auto-focusing speed that will let you take several pictures in a minute. Moreover, it has very little distortion and ensures tack-sharp images across the whole frame.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The reason this lens makes an appearance on this list is because of all the technologically advanced features that stun users. The sharpness and clarity it delivers are just phenomenal. Also, the build of this lens is robust, making it a durable option for extreme weather conditions.

Who Will Use This Most

If you are a professional photographer, this lens is designed for you. It has been created with elements and technological features fit for architect or landscape photographers, as well as for studio photography and wedding events. So, all in all, it is pretty versatile and suitable for various kinds of photographers.

Bottom Line

Looking for one of the best FX zoom lenses in the market? This is the best option for you. The processor in this promises sharpness and consistency of image quality in every shot that you take. In addition, it allows you to capture every scene and moment beautifully.

Best Nikon Prime Lens FX:
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G

Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • Lightweight lens for any time of the day
  • Aspherical lens that reduces color fringing
  • Best portrait effect you can achieve in any lens
  • Silent Wave Motor (SWM) for super speedy and noiseless autofocus
  • Engineered with Super Integrated Coating (SIC) that reduce flare and balance colors

CONS

  • Some level of distortion in the images
  • Void of vibration reduction technology
  • Does not have an aperture control ring on the lens

What Recent Buyers Report

Those who are into portrait photography have fallen in love with the high quality of this lens, as it renders silky bokeh and stunning portraits that will make you swoon. The colors are well-balanced and bright, and the controls are easy to maneuver, which makes it a great recommendation for amateurs.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This lens may be small, but it is super-efficient and is built with the latest technology to provide high-quality images at the most reasonable price. If you need the best FX prime lens in the market, this is the one you should consider, as it operates flawlessly in every light condition.

Who Will Use This Most

Novice photographers who have recently stepped into the realm of photography can use this 50mm lens to practice and improve their skills as it is relatively cheap and of high quality. Professionals who need a lens for events such as weddings, birthdays, etc. can also use it for beautiful portraits.

Bottom Line

For the price, this lens is a bang for the buck. This prime lens ensures that you have the best photographic experience for most types of photography. It is lightweight, powerful, and has blazing fast auto-focus that is silent. This will indefinitely exceed your expectations and make you fall in love with photography again and again.

Best 35mm Lens for Nikon FX:
 Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G

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

PROS

  • Works like a dream in low-light conditions
  • Aperture is bright and delivers natural images
  • Easy to travel around with, as it is light and compact
  • Images are tack-sharp with this lens with reduced aberrations
  • SIC allows the image quality to be consistent with reduced flare in the result

CONS

  • None

What Recent Buyers Report

This camera lens has an expensive and high-quality build to it, which is great as it comes at a really affordable price. It also comes packed with a case. Moreover, it allows more elements to fit into the frame and takes note of all the details which show up in the images. It is fast and delivers crisp photographs.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This lens works flawlessly in low-light conditions and smooths out roughness, making the color contrasts balanced and the image quality tack-sharp. The focusing is noiseless and the bokeh is silky and soft. For a budgeted lens, the quality is totally high-end. It is also a must-have if you are into portrait photography.

Who Will Use This Most

This is an amazing lens if you want to take portraits. It is perfect for discrete shooting or landscape photography and creates stellar portraits, as well. The subject is in focus and its bokeh rendering is out of this world. It can take photos in any light conditions, as well.

Bottom Line

Looking for a 35mm FX lens at a great price? This lens will undoubtedly surprise you and give you results that you never expected. Its highly advanced technological features will leave you speechless as it promises high-quality images and consistent color contrasts each time.

Best Nikon Travel Lens FX:
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G

Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED Vibration Reduction Zoom Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • Super-compact and highly versatile
  • Manual to automatic switch is super-fast
  • Nano Crystal Coating reduces flare and ghosting
  • Equipped with vibration reduction and image stabilization features
  • Aspherical lens and ED elements ensure that the chromatic aberrations are minimized

CONS

  • Corners get dimmed at wider angles
  • Has some visible distortion in the images
  • May have issues tracking down or capturing fast-moving subjects

What Recent Buyers Report

This lens delivers visually appealing images that are extremely sharp and of consistently superior quality. It is also not that heavy and promises tack-sharp images edge to edge. Moreover, its bokeh rendering is superb and delivers the softest and silkiest bokeh. Overall, photographers highly recommend this lens.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera lens is equipped with Nikon VR2, which allows for greater quality images, higher image stabilization, and less blurriness. The SWM feature in this lens also provides faster auto-focus, which captures photo after photo without any noise. Plus, its color consistency is also superb.

Who Will Use This Most

This lens is suited for landscape, portrait, and event photography, such as weddings or birthdays. It can take high-quality images of distant subjects, as well as beautiful portraits with creamy bokeh. If you're interested in the above types of photography, then you will adore this lens.

Bottom Line

If you are looking for an amazing, easy-to-carry lens for traveling purposes, then this is the one for you. It is highly versatile and takes stellar images of various scenes and landscapes, and will not disappoint you with its highly advanced features and great image quality and result.

Best Nikon Portrait Lens FX:
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 85mm f/1.4G

Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 85mm f/1.4G Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

PROS

  • Excellent performance in low-light conditions
  • PGM process on aspherical lenses for heat resistance
  • Nano Crystal Coat for reduced ghost effects or flaring
  • SWM for faster and noiseless auto-focus, and robust build
  • Wide aperture that allows beautiful background blurring and faster subject focus

CONS

  • Pricier, compared to other models
  • Optical stabilization feature is not equipped in this lens
  • At the f/1.4 and f/2 apertures, the vignetting is quite strong

What Recent Buyers Report

Photographers fell in love with this lens as it transforms the actual portrait into a gorgeous, vibrant image that exudes brilliance and superiority. It’s one of the best portrait lenses you can ever purchase, with creamy and soft bokeh that mesh into the picture perfectly, creating the dreamiest portrait you could ever want.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This lens gives you the most accurate and precise quality you could ever want in a camera lens, with features that are highly advanced to boost your photography experience and transform it completely. It can produce sharp and crisp images, even in the dimmest of lights, without any blurriness or distortion.

Who Will Use This Most

This is a lens specifically designed for professional photographers who require a high-quality and blazing-fast auto-focus. Wedding, portrait, and studio photographers would get the most use out of this lens because of its impeccable quality, creamy bokeh, and consistent colors throughout the frame.

Bottom Line

This lens works like a dream in low lights and hushes the background to make it look soft without compromising the sharpness and clarity of this image. Its build is robust, and its focus speed, as well as the accuracy, is spectacular.

Advantages and Disadvantages of FX Lenses

Let’s look over the advantages and disadvantages of getting an FX lens so you know what features you are looking for and to understand the whole idea of an FX lens. 

Advantages

In this section, you’ll get to know the advantages of purchasing an FX Lens, compared to other lenses, especially DX ones. 

Sharper Quality

On a DX body, this lens will create the sharpest quality images in the center of the image, while a more subdued and natural-looking edge will be made. Plus, the cropped area of the image will be sharper and more superior than that of a DX lens.

Advanced Features

There are more features such as sharper optics, higher performance, and a lower aperture available in FX lenses, which will enhance your photography experience.

Free Upgrade to FX Cameras

You can upgrade to the FX cameras later on in the future without getting new lenses and spending more money.

Disadvantages

This portion will attempt to explain some of the drawbacks or limitations of an FX lens.

Waste of Potential on a DX Camera

Using a DX camera on an FX lens will not unleash the full potential of the lens and will create a huge image circle in APC/C body, which will all be outside the sensor and be wasted.

Heavy Weight

FX lenses are harder to carry around than a DX lens, as with more features come more elements and heavier weight. 

Conclusion

Buying an FX lens is a difficult and time-consuming task because of the variety and price involved. In order to get the right one for your type of photography, careful considerations must be made. Hopefully, this article proved to be a useful guide in determining which FX lens you should purchase for your photography needs. 

People Also Ask

If you still have some concerns or doubts in your mind, then this portion will help you get rid of all the ambiguities so you know exactly what to expect when you get your new FX lens. Here are some frequently asked concerns of some customers:

How Can You Tell if a Nikon Lens is Full-Frame?

In Nikon lenses, there are two specific formats. A DX-format represents a cropped frame, which is used on DSLR cameras. However, FX lenses are formatted to be full-frame, but can also be utilized on crop frames. This is how you can distinguish between a full and crop frame.

Is FX Better Than DX?

Yes, FX-format is far better than DX, since FX has lower apertures, which allow more light to be gathered in the image sensor, and thus, make a higher quality image than DX lenses. An FX-format also offers more sensitivity and less noise when photos are taken. Overall, yes, FX is better since they’re full-frame.

What Happens When You Use a DX Lens on an FX Camera?

Since DX lenses have a smaller circle on the image and are cropped rather than full-frame, they will not operate or function on FX cameras. These lenses are unsuitable by design and features for FX cameras, so it is better to get an FX lens for an FX camera.