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If you're in the market for a better lens for your Nikon camera, but you aren't sure what you can get without breaking the bank, consider this list just for you!
Though many lenses are pricey, these affordable Nikon lenses offer great performance without costing a ton of money.
From primes to zooms, wide-angles to telephotos, this list of Nikon lenses is the perfect place to find your next favorite lens.
Let's get started!
Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm F1.8G
What I love about 35mm prime lenses is their sheer versatility.
Though many people prefer them for portraiture, 35mm lenses like the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G are also ideal for landscapes, street photography, cityscapes, and a host of other photographic pursuits.
With its constant f/1.8 aperture, this lens also gives you good low-light performance, which allows you to extend your photographic adventures into the early morning and late evening hours (or indoors, too) without as much worry about whether or not you can get a well-exposed shot.
Additionally, this is a small, lightweight lens that's ideal for packing around as your go-to daily lens.
Editor's Tip: You can extend your budget much further by buying a pre-owned lens. Shop for quality, used lenses that have been thoroughly inspected.
Nikon AF-S FX Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G
If 35mm is a little too wide for your tastes, then the perfect alternative is Nikon's 50mm f/1.8G.
Like the 35mm f/1.8 discussed above, this lens is small, lightweight, and offers you excellent performance and value.
The same f/1.8 aperture gives you plenty of low-light shooting options, and that large aperture also produces gorgeous background blur.
Perhaps even better, this lens was built with sharpness in mind, so whether you shoot with a full frame or crop sensor Nikon camera, you will enjoy edge-to-edge sharpness without spending a ton of money.
Nikon AF 85mm f/1.8D
Though the Nikon AF 85mm f/1.8D is the most expensive prime lens on this list, it's still a highly affordable option for someone that wants a high-quality lens that's perfect for portraits.
The 85mm focal length allows you to step back from your subject to take beautiful environmental shots, or, if you prefer, you can step in and take closely framed close-ups with stunning bokeh in the background.
Like the other primes discussed above, this lens is sharp, fast, and has a small form factor that prevents it from getting in your way while you work.
Nikon AF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED DX VR II
For photographers that want just about the best all-around zoom lens on a budget, it's tough to beat this little 18-55mm gem.
Not only is this lens super lightweight, but it's incredibly versatile, allowing you to shoot virtually any subject from wide-angle to standard lengths.
This lens also has Nikon's Vibration Reduction, which gives you four extra stops of shooting handheld without concern about camera shake. In other words, this lens allows you to use faster shutter speeds, smaller apertures, or lower ISOs without a tripod than comparable lenses.
For a budget-friendly zoom, this lens is also quite sharp, producing detailed images that you can turn into large prints.
Nikon AF-S 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR
A nice mid-range zoom option for photographers is this 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6 lens.
With such a wide focal range from wide-angle to telephoto, this could truly be your one walkaround lens that you take with you to walk around your city or to take on travels around the world.
The added Vibration Reduction feature gives you more range in terms of when you can handhold the camera,
This lens also has an aspherical lens element that all but eliminates lens aberrations. Additionally, there's a Super Integrated Coating that helps light transmission to give your photos less flare and improved color.
Editor's Tip: Upgrading your camera can allow you to expand your photography skills and creativity. Find a pre-owned camera body from Nikon, Canon, Sony, and other brands.
Nikon AF 70-300mm f/4-5.6D ED
As far as versatility goes, this 70-300mm lens offers the most in terms of focal length versatility.
While this lens doesn't offer the sharpness of the prime lenses outlined above, it certainly gives you much more leeway in terms of taking photos from standard to super telephoto lengths.
The aperture range of f/4-f/5.6 also isn't as robust as Nikon's prime lenses, but that's to be expected with a budget-friendly zoom lens.
One of the best assets of this lens is its lightweight construction - far lighter than comparable zoom lenses, you can easily pack this lens around for a long day of shooting without feeling as though you're carrying a brick in your camera bag.
Get a pre-owned Nikon AF 70-300mm lens for around $100.