Top 14 Best Nikon AF-S Nikkor Lenses

Top 14 Best Nikon AF-S Nikkor Lenses - Find out which Nikon lenses have made the ePHOTOzine top 14 Nikkor lens list.

|  Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR in Interchangeable Lenses
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Nikon has a vast collection of lenses on offer at various price points, meaning they cater for a wide variety of photographers. If you have a spare £10,000 and enjoy sport then the 400mm f/2.8E FL ED VR lens will be perfect for you while at the other end of the scale you can find lenses such as the £470 35mm f/1.8G wide-angle lens.

As buying the right lens to suit your photography and budget is really important, we've put together a top ten list of the best scoring Nikon lenses we've reviewed, up until now. This top ten is updated regularly so do keep checking back to see if a new lens has taken the top Nikon lens title.


1. Nikon AF-P DX Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3 G ED VR

The Nikon AF-P DX Nikkor 70-300mm ED VR is intended for APS-C format DSLRs and gives outstanding sharpness. It also stood up really well to flare, has a fast and silent AF motor and is available for an excellent price. 

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2. Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR 

AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR
This new Nikon 70-200mm lens was called 'outstanding in its class' by our reviewer and has super smooth focus and zoom rings. It features super effective vibration reduction, a high-quality construction and superb optical qualities. There are 22 elements in 18 groups, including 6 Extra Low Dispersion,1 Flourite and one High Refractive Index element.

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3. Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4E PF ED VR

Nikon AF S NIKKOR 300mm F4E PF ED VR (11)

The Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4E PF ED VR is a telephoto lens that has a maximum aperture of f/4 and all the bells and whistles you'd expect to find on a top Nikon lens. Plus, it has an electronic aperture diaphragm and a Phase-Fresnel optical element.

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4. Nikon AF-S Nikkor 500mm f/4E FL ED VR

AFS 500E FL Angle2 1435827902

Although the £8000 price tag will put the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 500mm f/4E FL ED VR way beyond the reach of many, features such as the relative light weight, fast focusing and superb handling will make this lens a popular choice for rental too. The lighter-weight alone is worth some kind of premium to pay over other alternatives.

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5. Nikon AF-S 105mm f/2.8G ED VR Micro

Nikon Nikkor AF S 105mm Micro Lens (5)

The Nikon AF-S 105mm f/2.8G ED IF VR Micro has an f/2.8 maximum aperture and a silent wave focusing motor which allows full-time manual focus override.  Life size magnification is possible at the lens' closest focus distance and Nikon's Nano-Crystal anti-reflective lens coatings are used. Metal and high-quality plastics are used in its construction, although it is on the heavier side weighing in at 720g. 

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6. Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/4G ED VR

Nikon AFS 70 200 VR

The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/4G ED VR is a popular telephoto lens that has a maximum aperture of f/4 and features Nikon's Vibration Reduction technology and Nano-Crystal coatings. This lens is relatively lightweight and is constructed from high-quality plastics as well as a metal lens mount which has a rubber gasket. The lens itself is not weather sealed, though.

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7. Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 400mm f/2.8E FL ED VR

AF-S NIKKOR 400mm f/2.8E FL ED VR

The Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 400mm f/2.8E FL ED VR is a rather expensive lens but as a result, its build is superb. It features weather sealing as well as Nikon's Vibration Reduction technology and Nano-Crystal coatings that have been applied to the surfaces of the lens to help suppress ghosting and flare. You'll also find fluorine coating on the front element and an electronic diaphragm.

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8. Nikon AF-S Nikkor 300mm f/2.8G ED VRII

Nikon Nikkor AF-S 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II

The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 300mm f/2.8G ED VRII is designed for daily professional use and as a result, it has a price tag to match its purpose. However, if you have almost £4k to spare, you'll find weather sealing and Nikon's Vibration Reduction II technology built into this lens. Nikon's Nano-Crystal coatings have also been applied to lens surfaces and it comes with a permanently attached tripod collar. It's built like a tank and you get a lot of glass for your money but due to its weight, it's not something you'd carry around every day unless you really needed to. 

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9. Nikon AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G

Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G Ed Lens (5)

The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G is a wide-angle lens that has a bright maximum aperture (f/1.8) and silent, internal focusing with full-time manual focus override. It's rather lightweight, constructed from high-quality plastics and features a metal bayonet with a rubber gasket. AF is quick and manual adjustments can be made at any time thanks to the wide focusing ring that's smooth but can feel quite loose in use. 

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10. Nikon NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR

Nikon 80 400mm New Fx Lens (7)

The Nikon NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR is one of Nikon's more expensive lenses. Its barrel is made from a combination of high-quality plastics and metal, plus it's sealed against the elements. It's a little heavy but easy to handle and features a silent wave autofocus motor, Nano-Crystal coating to help control flare and Vibration Reduction technology.

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11. Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED VR

AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED VR

Replacing the previous Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G AF-S ED lens, the NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED VR adds more complexity to the optical design and also Nikon's VR (Vibration Reduction) system. This is a very impressive lens and a very desirable choice for Nikon users. There is very little to dislike and it would be a good choice for anyone planning a Nikon camera system. 

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12. Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 105mm f/1.4E ED

Nikon 105mm F1,4 Front Oblique View

The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 105mm f/1.4E ED is the World's brightest 105mm lens, with an f/1.4 aperture, it's ideal for portraits and subject separation, with beautiful bokeh as well as excellent sharpness even when shooting wide open. 

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13. Nikon PC Nikkor 19mm f/4 E ED Tilt Shift Lens

Nikon Pc19mm F4 2

This 19mm tilt-shift lens is great for photographing tall buildings and subjects where converging verticals are an issue. The lens is easy to focus manually and has low distortion and low flare. It's a very versatile lens that will be a great purchase if you like to experiment. 

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14. Nikon AF-S 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G ED Lens

Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G ED

The Nikon AF-S 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G ED in an ultra-wide zoom lens that fits FX format DSLRs. It's lightweight, constructed from high-quality plastics and a rubber gasket surrounds the metal lens mount. A Silent Wave Motor means auto focus is quick and silent while manual adjustments can be made easily thanks to the wide rubber focusing ring. The zoom action is also smooth and can be operated with the lightest of touches.

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To read more lens reviews, visit ePHOTOzine's review section

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The 200-500 VR?
The 70-200 2.8 VRII ?
sneal 11 5 7 United Kingdom

Quote:The 200-500 VR?

A fair question! I had the pleasure of borrowing one of these to use alongside my 80-400AFS VR. Based on that experience I would say the 80-400 is better in all aspects other than cost. Smaller, lighter, faster AF, weather sealed. With a TC14E-II giving it an effective focal length of 560mm and effective aperture of f/8.0 the image quality was at least as good as the 200-500mm and the AF was still quicker.

I guess the TC14E-III would be better still as I am told by a Nikon UK rep. that it was designed for use with the 80-400mm (the mk. II pre-dates the lens by several years)

So, money no object (are rare scenario!) I'd go for a 80-400AFS and a TC14E-III. Is it worth nearly twice the cost of a 200-500mm? Try hand-holding either for an hour of more - it'll help decide!
I have this lense and it is superb'
I also used to own 80-400mm VR but it was poor quality. Got rid of it and got 200-500mm Vr - absolutely brilliant handling and quality. A pleasure to use and great results! Also got no 14 the G version of the 18-35mm this is a light but outstanding quality lens. A long term keeper for me which I bought after buying a 14-24mm which also did not live up to the hype? Are journo;s really testing these lenses or are they plagiarising the first review and publishing BS?

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