Nikon Lens Reviews—Comprehensive List
I thought it would be useful to put together a small list of the Nikon lenses that I’ve reviewed, as well as some thoughts about the gear and links to sample photos. I’ll be updating this list as I use and review Nikon gear. Hit the jump for links to my reviews on all these lenses, which I can personally recommend. Heck, I’ll even throw in some sample images. My Nikon Lens Reviews Here’s a list of the Nikon lenses I’ve reviewed. Below, I’ve included a mini-review (read: love fest) of these lenses, but be sure to click through down below to the full reviews of each of these lenses. The full reviews go into the design, usability, image quality, and, most importantly, sample images made with all this glass. Nikon Zooms
Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8 The Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8 is a lens that convinces you. It’s so wide that it seems almost unusable—that is, until you actually do use it. And when you make that first killer, only-possible-at-14mm image, it’s like a whole world opens up. A wide, wide world. Addictive perspective aside, this lens offers best-in-class image performance as well. Almost flawless sharpness and an overall extremely well corrected design. I’ll give up my 14-24mm when you pry it from my cold, dead hands.
Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 The Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 is my go-to lens for most of the shooting I do—it’s the lens I very often reach for first. The reason is simple—the range is just about perfect for so much of the shooting encountered with event photography, as it covers a wide-to-short-telephoto perspective in a single package. Read my review of the Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8.
Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 The new Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 VR II is is one of my favorite lenses ever made. It greatly improves on the already excellent quality of the Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 VR I with even better wide-aperture performance and keeps the telepathically fast focusing speed. Add in an extremely nice rendering quality and you have a killer portait lens, too. Read my review of the Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 VR II.
Nikon 24-120mm f/4 VR This all-in-one lens gives you a true wide-angle with a medium telephoto reach. In other words, what some might call a perfect travel lens. VR makes up for the slower but constant f/4 aperture. While there is some distortion at the extremes, overall image quality is very good for such a wide zoom range. Fantastic contrast and color rendition thanks to great optics and Nikon’s magic Nano Crystal Coating. Read my review of the Nikon 24-120mm f/4.
Nikon 24mm f/1.4 Fast and wide. The Nikon 24mm f/1.4 offers something a little unique in that at f/1.4, the depth of field is shallow enough that you can create a sense of subject isolation that you’d normall associate with longer focal lengths. Add in the wide 24mm perspective and things get interesting. Add in the fact that at f/1.4 this lens devours any glimmer of available light, and you have a killer lens for any kind of photojournalistic shooting. Read my review of the Nikon 24mm f/1.4.
Nikon 50mm f/1.4 The Nikon 50mm f/1.4 is the quintessential fast standard prime, updated with modern goodness. This new AF-S version improves on the optics of the older AF-D model with better AF performance and much better optics. Gone are the hazy, “dreamy” quality of the images of the old 50mm—instead we get really excellent, clear rendering at basically all apertures. For shallow depth of field shooters, you should be happy to know that the out of focus quality of the new lens is much smoother than the old lens. Read my review of the Nikon 50mm f/1.4.
Nikon 85mm f/1.4 The Nikon 85mm f/1.4 is a lens takes everything you thought you liked about the old Nikon 85mm f/1.4 AF-D and makes you want to throw it in the trash. OK, not literally, but the new 85mm f/1.4 is better in just about every single way. It’s sharper wide open, it’s smoother in character, and the contrast and color rendering is better to boot. Read my review of the Nikon 85mm f/1.4.
Nikon 85mm f/1.8 The new Nikon 85mm f/1.8 surprised me. It doesn’t have the sex appeal of the faster f/1.4 version, but it has essentially all of the performance—which is saying a lot, considering the Nikon 85mm f/1.4 is basically a perfect lens. With this f/1.8 version, sharpness is outstanding even wide open. Character is nice and smooth. Overall, it’s just a great lens. If you don’t need the 2/3-stop advantage of the 85mm f/1.4, this f/1.8 model offers exceptional performance and value. Read my review of the Nikon 85mm f/1.8.
My Camera DSLR and Lenses for Concert Photography
I use two of the Nikon D800 for the majority of my work. High resolution, excellent high ISO in a robust but still compact body.
Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8:
For most gigs, the 24-70mm is my go-to lens. Exceptional image quality at wide apertures and super-functional range.
Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 VR:
A perfect pair to the Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8, I can basically shoot any job with the midrange and this lens. Superb image quality.
Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8:
Ultra-wide perspective, ridiculously sharp even wide open at f/2.8. I love using this lens up-close and personal, where it excels.