I have found myself in a situation where people own a really good camera but are not able to decide on the right lens for it. Their main concern is? What if I ended up buying a lens that hinders the performance of my camera or my camera does not fully support the lens?
Normally, this happens to photographers who have really powerful and high-end cameras like the Nikon 810 or 850, for that matter but they know very little about the lenses in the market that are available. That is why I have taken it upon myself to discuss the best lenses for the Nikon D810 and will tell you in detail which lens is the best.
Best Lenses For Nikon D810
If you want the be-all-end-all lens for your Nikon D810, close your eyes and pick the Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 as it is only the best lens you can get for your camera.
Nikon 24-70mm – Best Overall Lens for Nikon D810
Nikon 24-70mm has excellent sharpness in the center. Its classic f/2.8 aperture is fun to use.
There was a time when I used to think that zoom lenses were not good and they were just a lazy excuse for cramming too many focal lengths in a single lens but that is not at all the case here. After all, the moment I picked up my first 24-70mm for testing, I realized what I was missing and I was missing a lot, to be honest.
Ever since that, the 24-70mm has become my favorite focal length, and every time I have to buy a new camera or test one out, this is the lens I use regardless of the camera system I have my hands on. The Nikon 24-70mm comes in the classic f/2.8 aperture that we see on these lenses and delivers on all the promises and more.
For starters, the center sharpness on this lens remains great across the entire zoom range. If you are looking to use this lens to capture isolated subjects, this lens is going to work great. The constant f/2.8 aperture is always a fun thing to have.
The lens is also relatively lightweight and while I would not call it compact, it is still small enough that you can carry it around with ease. The build quality, however, is impeccable here.
My only issue with this otherwise perfect lens is that it does suffer from softer edges. An issue that might not be a problem for many photographers out there.
Overall, the Nikon 24-70mm is one of the best lenses for the Nikon D810, and overall one of the best lenses in the market. I wholeheartedly endorse this lens for its impeccable performance and it will not let you down, that is a guarantee.
Nikon 28-300mm – Best Telephoto Zoom Lens for Nikon D810
Nikon 28-300mm remains sharp throughout the zoom range. Its 10.7x zoom range is impressive to have.
We are starting the list with a familiar face. Of course, you have seen this lens in several roundups before, as well. The reason why it keeps coming back is because of how consistently it performed across various cameras and it continues to deliver the same level of performance.
The Nikon 28-300mm can easily be called the best telephoto zoom lens for the Nikon D810 or even in general because it does bring a good host of changes and well, you cannot go without those performance numbers.
For starters, the lens is tack sharp and that remains a constant across the entire zoom range. An impressive feature considering how affordable the lens is. It also offers a 10.7x zoom ratio, which might not sound like much but does deliver excellent performance and allows you to punch into some nice shots.
The fact that Nikon has added image stabilization in this lens only makes this an even more affordable and attractive offering. This is the type of lens that would keep you away from a 3rd party lens and opt for a first-party one.
Last but not least, the Nikon 28-300mm is one of the more compact telephoto zoom lenses I have used. This surprised me considering the zoom lens on this beast, but hey, you are getting a great lens overall.
Now, I am not going to say that everything with this lens is good. There is a lot of distortion on certain focal lengths, and the edges are softer at maximum aperture. Which is something you would have expected.
Overall, if you are in search of a good telephoto zoom lens and you are not in the mood to spend a lot of money, investing in a Nikon 28-300mm makes a lot of sense as it delivers a fantastic performance across the board and does not bring any downsides, too.
Sigma 35mm – Best Standard Wide Angle Lens for Nikon D810
Sigma 35mm is one of the sharpest lenses on the market. Its wide f/1.4 aperture is great to have.
Another lens that managed to make a return is the Sigma 35mm and for all the right reasons, to be honest. You see, these wide-angle lenses on a crop sensor camera are going to give you a very different-looking field of view, and I believe that it constrains the user as far as how creative they can get with their photography.
But with a full-frame camera like the D810, you are looking at a lens that truly shines and does so in a great way, too. For starters, you are looking at the true 35mm look and feel which a lot of filmmakers are using, and a bright aperture that makes everything even better.
For starters, this is one of the sharpest lenses that I have had the chance to use, I understand that bright lenses such as this one are often called out for being softer, but hey, this is not the case here as it is super sharp and excellent for low-light photography.
Speaking of low-light photography, the one thing that I could not stop loving about this lens is the f/1.4 aperture I know this has become a common occurrence in modern lenses, but you are getting something that can shoot in almost every condition there is.
You are also able to get your hands on it at a very attractive price, which I think is always a good thing for such a sharp and bright prime lens. Last but not least, I believe Sigma has managed to nail the build quality out of the park as it is one of the most well-built lenses I have come across.
After spending a good week with this lens, my only concern with it is that there is some heavy vignetting in certain situations. An optical characteristic of this lens that many people might not like but hey if you know how to use Lightroom or any good photo editing software, this one is an easy fix.
In conclusion, if you are in search of an excellent prime lens for your Nikon D810, this lens is the one to go with. I doubt you can go wrong with the lens in any way, because you are getting excellent results overall and the lens is not going to cost you a lot of money, either. I see that as an absolute win-win for everyone.
Nikon 20mm – Best Lens for Astrophotography
Nikon 20mm comes with stunning sharpness. It produces some excellent sun stars.
Astrophotography can be a lot of fun but at the same time, it can be a confusing mess for people who do not know what they are doing and how to start. The first thing that you need for astrophotography aside from a good camera is a good lens that also has a good and wide focal length that allows for a great field of view.
This is where the Nikon 20mm fits, I believe. The lens not only brings a wide field of view, but it also offers a bright aperture at f/1.8, making this a great option for landscape photography even if you do not plan on letting all the light in when going for low-light shooting.
The great thing about this lens is that the sharpness of this lens is one of the best I have experienced. I have been using a lot of lenses and sharpness always does it for me. If the lens is sharp enough, it is going to be a good one in almost every aspect.
What is even better is that if you do stop down the aperture, the sharpness only increases and gets better I understand that a lot of people are not interested but you do have to stop down the aperture in astrophotography.
The lens also produces some of the best-looking sun stars, which are always nice to look at whenever you are using a lens. I know some people do have opinions against this optical characteristic but you cannot help but deny the fact that they do look great.
One more thing is that the lens is super lightweight and makes it even easier to carry than before, and that is always a thing I love about lenses.
Sadly, there are a few concerns that need to be voiced here. For starters, you are looking at average corner sharpness, and there is some gradual light fall-off, as well. The lens also has some issues with proper focusing when set to infinity.
Granted, it does have some issues but which lens does not? Given the price of this lens, the Nikon 20mm lens makes a lot of sense, and based on the performance you are getting out of this lens is even better so you are not going to run into any issues or problems whenever you are using this lens.
Tamron 24-70mm – Best Standard Zoom Lens for Nikon D810
Tamron 24-70mm comes with extremely impressive optics. Its image stabilization is highly effective.
It is pretty obvious that Tamron lenses have come a long, long way, and for all the good reasons, to be honest. Gone are the days when these lenses used to be average. Tamron has risen to action with some of the best lenses that are available in the market, and it is only going to get better.
For starters, the Tamron 24-70mm became my favorite for several reasons. The first obvious thing is that I do love this focal range a bit too much and I cannot lie about that, either. With that said, the lens here is a lot of fun to use and I believe, in the right hands, can make all the difference.
For starters, you are getting a good lens that has some of the best optics that I have had the chance to look at, as it is not going to let you down at all. The image stabilization on this lens is one of the most accurate ones I have had the chance to experience, and you are also getting one of the best autofocusing on any lens available in the market as it is not only quick but also silent.
The lens also performs rather well against flare, one thing that I always look for whenever choosing a lens as it helps with better performance outdoors. I also really like the fact that Tamron has paid attention to the build quality on this lens and has also included weather sealing, which is great to have.
Last but not least, the lens is competitively priced, which makes it a great offering for anyone who is looking at various lenses and wants to pick one that does not cost a lot of money.
I will not say that there are no issues with this lens, as there is some vignetting at f/2.8, and when you are using the telephoto end of it the switches on the lens are on the stiffer side, which hinders quick switching.
Overall, the Tamron 24-70mm is a great lens for your Nikon D810. It is affordable, gets the job done, and most importantly, it does not create any issues for anyone who is looking to use a good lens, in the first place. If you want a great lens for your camera, this is the one you should get.
Nikon 70-200mm – Best Lens for Wildlife Photography
Nikon 70-200mm is one of the sharpest in the market. for starters. Its constant f/2.8 aperture is excellent to have.
We are only left with a few more really great lenses but that does not mean that we are going to give up on them so far as we have come a long way. The next lens that I am looking at is for all the shutterbugs who would prefer to be out in the open and take shots of animals.
The Nikon 70-200mm is the lens that a lot of people would overlook because of how intimidating it looks but honestly, if you are looking for a good lens that delivers excellent performance and allows you to take some stunning images, then you are at the right spot, to be honest.
The 70-200mm is one of the classic focal length ranges that you can find in any lens whenever you are searching for something good in the market, and this lens absolutely nails, it to be honest. You are getting one of the sharpest lenses available in the market that is known for delivering excellent performance.
Another great thing about this lens is that it manages to maintain the f/2.8 aperture across the entire zoom range, which is an impressive feature, especially for a focal length that goes this far. This also means that you are never going to run out of light whenever you are shooting outdoors with this lens.
The lens also offers optical image stabilization, which I believe should be a norm for all wildlife lenses because, without such an important feature, good performance over longer zoom ranges might not be as easy.
Thankfully, if you are thinking about putting the lens through its paces, you are getting a sturdy build quality out of this lens, as well. Not just that, the rotating tripod collar is also great to have whenever you are trying to set a lens without running into any issues.
While I do love this lens a lot, I have to mention that there is some distortion present in this lens, and the corners are often dim at f/2.8. I understand that this might not be an issue for a lot of people but we must be mentioning these. This is easily one of the most versatile telephoto zoom lenses that you can get for the Nikon D810 which delivers outstanding image quality.
Sigma 150-600mm – The Best Lens for Sports Photography
Sigma 150-600mm offers one of the best telephoto reaches. It remains sharp across the board.
Sports photography is a different beast altogether because you cannot just carry a small lens in your backpack and call it a day. You are going to need a good lens with a great zoom range to get the job done and well, that is where the Sigma 150-600mm comes into play as this very well be the greatest zoom lens of its kind. Normally, a super telephoto zoom lens is something that most people do not want to go for, simply because they are massive in their size. However, this one is an amazing option,
Now, at first, I was a bit surprised when I looked at the price of this lens as it does not cost a lot of money. Therefore, I was under the impression that the performance might not be as good as some might be hoping but that is not the case, at all.
The fact that Sigma 150-600mm is one of the best-performing lenses is an understatement, to be honest. For starters, the excellent telephoto range makes this lens one of the best for sports photography and you can even use it in wildlife photography without any issues.
The lens is also incredibly sharp, which makes it one of the best options available in the market, and you will not be disappointed by how good it is. Sigma also gives you a tripod collar with this lens, along with a lens hood. So, you are looking into something solid and a great performer.
Moving further, you are looking at a lens that has excellent focusing capabilities; pair this with a good camera and you have gotten yourself an incredible performer across the board. Sigma’s take on image stabilization is also great because it works without a flaw, and just keeps doing the job, and that too, without stopping.
Another great thing here is that the lens brings a zoom locking mechanism, which is good when you want to be sure that the focal range is correct without any issues. Last, but not the least, the one thing that I love about this lens is that it is one of the more affordable sports lenses out in the market, which is always a thing I respect.
My only issues with this lens include the fact that there is some degree of chromatic aberration and the lens often runs into pincushion distortion but the overall performance of this lens is good enough that you are not going to run into too many problems.
I am not a sports photographer, I will be honest. Therefore, when I was asked to review the Sigma 150-600mm lens, I was a bit confused and overwhelmed because I did not know how to get started but after spending a considerable amount of time with this lens, I realized that this is one of the best lenses in the market. It easily is one of the best super telephoto zoom lenses in the market.
Nikon 50mm f/1.4 – Best Prime Lens for Nikon D810
Nikon 50mm f/1.4 offers consistent and superb image quality. The image quality only gets better when you stop the aperture down.
You would think that we would finish this list without including one of our favorite lenses of all time. Well, that is not going to happen now, is it? The Nikon 50mm f/1.4 is one of the lenses that everyone should own. It does not matter if you are a beginner or you have been taking pictures for as long as you can remember, having this lens in your bag is always important.
On that note, we have talked about how a 50mm lens is never really going to do you injustice as this is one of the focal lengths that have become a favorite for so many people that it is surprising how people normally look for this, to begin with.
With that out of the way, if you are waiting for me to say a few good words about this lens. I have a lot to say about this lens. For starters, you are getting an even image quality across the entire frame, allowing for great images with ease.
The image quality gets even better when you decide to stop down the lens, and the lens has no chromatic aberration either. Not to forget, the lens remains one of the sharpest lenses in the market, which is always a feature that I love. You would also notice that the autofocus motor on this lens is perhaps the quietest and offers manual override as well.
I am not going to say that this lens does not have any faults, to be honest. For starters, you are getting slightly soft when you are using larger apertures. The lens is also a bit prone to flare.
Overall, I would say that the Nikon 50mm f/1.4 is a great lens across the board. This is one of the lenses that are complete in so many ways that you do not feel like changing it even after years.
Nikon 85mm f/1.4 – Best Lens for Portrait Photography
Nikon 85mm f/1.4 has excellent and consistent image quality. This lens is great for portraits.
The second last lens on this list is also among my favorites and for all the right reasons. You see, I love portrait photography, and while I cannot say I am an expert, the fact that there is so much emotion to capture in those photos is always the reason why I keep going back to it.
A lens plays a huge role, to be honest. You need something that is not only sharp, but also something clear, consistent, and most importantly, something that can go up close and personal with some good results, too.
This is where the 85mm lenses come into play. I say lenses because this has become the standard telephoto lens for almost all camera and lens manufacturers. You will normally find these in either f/1.8 or f/1.4 aperture variants and both of them are excellent.
Today, however, we are looking at the Nikon 85mm f/1.4, this is one of the higher-end lenses available in the market and is known for delivering some of the sharpest images that you can expect from any lens in the market.
However, that is not all there is to this lens. You are getting minimum distortion, to say the least. The aperture is bright at f/1.4m and most importantly, the classic focal length for Nikon d810 portraits is there and it produces some amazing results, as well.
At the same time, you are looking at a relatively lightweight lens, and this will allow you to carry the lens without any issues.
Sure, the lens does not have any optical image stabilization but you will rarely need that feature, to begin with.
If you are looking for the best lens for the Nikon d810 that can help you take some incredible portraits regardless of the subject, I would wholeheartedly suggest the Nikon 85mm f/1.4 as it is not going to let you down.
What are the Differences Between Nikon D810 and D850?
At first, I thought I would skip the comparison almost entirely but then I realized that I have already made a list of the best lenses for Nikon D850, so it makes sense that there is a proper comparison. After all, the readers would want to know that both cameras are different, despite a very small difference in their naming scheme.
Now, both of these cameras look similar to one and the other. There is hardly any physical difference. Both have excellent design, both are weather-sealed and are made out of magnesium alloy, and the weight is almost the same, too. Aside from the obvious button placement changes.
The Nikon D850, however, gets rid of the popup flash and brings a tilting LCD system which makes it easier for the users to navigate without any issues. The LCD is also touched capable of easier navigation.
Moving on, the D850 offers a 45.7-megapixel sensor instead of the older 36.3-megapixel sensor on the D810. The sensor is also capable of recording 4K at 30 FPS and 1080p at as high as 120 FPS, which is a notable improvement.
The cameras are also different in terms of shooting speed. Where the D810 tops at 5 frames per second continuous shooting the D850 offers 7 frames per second and 9 frames if you add a battery grip.
Additionally, the autofocusing has received an upgrade as well. The D810 offered a 51-point AF with 15 cross-type points. You are looking at an impressive 153-point AF with 93 cross-type points on the Nikon D850.
Last but not least, the Nikon D850, thanks to its larger, newer, and more advanced sensor performs better at higher ISO settings despite having a larger sensor, at the same time.
These are some of the key differences between both cameras that readers must know about.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you want to make the most out of your Nikon D810, you have to put up a good lens. I am not saying that the camera itself is not capable. Even after so many years, this remains one of the best cameras that Nikon has made, and to this date, it is outperforming some of the modern offerings, too.
It is just the fact that finding a lens for your already high-end camera might be a bit confusing. Thanks to this roundup, you do not have to worry about not being able to find the lens that you are looking for.
Hey, I’m Gary Sindell from beautiful Vancouver. A passionate photographer turned ‘Lens Guru’, I’ll help you discover the power of the right lens and elevate your photography game.