Best Lenses for Nikon D800 / D800E

Best Lenses for Nikon D800

Nikon D800 / D800E is one of the most popular professional DSLRs released in 2012. Here are several recommended lenses for the Nikon D800.

DxOMark labs have tested over 100 different lenses measured on the 36MP Nikon D800, the best lenses for Nikon D800 are listed below:

50mm Standard Prime Portrait | 85mm, 90mm, 105mm Portrait | 24-70mm Standard Zoom | 70-200mm Telephoto Zoom | 70-300mm Telephoto Zoom | 200mm, 300mm, 400mm, 500mm, 600mm Super Telephoto Prime | Super Telephoto Zoom | 14mm, 15mm, 20mm Ultra-Wide | 24mm, 25mm, 28mm, 35mm Wide-Angle Prime | Wide-Angle Zoom | Macro | Under $500 Lenses | $500 – $1,000 lenses | $1,000 – $1,500 lenses | $1,500 – $2,000 lenses | Over $2,000 lenses

Best 50mm Standard Prime (Portrait) lenses for Nikon D800

The 50mm portrait standard lenses are very popular. Of all the lenses, the new released Zeiss Otus 1.4/55 is the best, but it costs you $4,000, very expensive. Luckly, there is another new announced lens: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art lens, which is known as one of the best 50mm lens. Other than this lens, three best lenses are from Nikon and Sigma – the Nikon AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.4D, Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.4G and Sigma 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Otus 1.4/55 45 B&H/Adorama/Rent
Sigma 50mm F1.4 EX DG HSM 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 D 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 G 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Makro-Planar T 50mm f/2 ZF2 31 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron 45mm f/1.8 Di VC USD Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G 31 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 D 29 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 58mm f/1.4G 28 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Planar T 50mm f/1.4 ZF2 26 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best 85mm -135mm prime portrait lenses for Nikon D800

At 85-135mm lenses, besides world best 85mm lens Zeiss Otus 1.4/85, the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.8G, the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.4G, Zeiss 135mm f/2 Sonnar T* lens are your best choices with the DxOMark score all at 40. If the Nikon 85mm f/1.4G doesn’t fit your budget, then take a long look at the Samyang 85mm f/1.4 Aspherical IF. It lacks any autofocus ability, but a score of 36 is remarkably good for such a low priced lens. If you can live with the manual limitations, it is worth serious consideration.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Zeiss Otus 85mm f/1.4 APO Planar T* 44 B&H/Adorama/eBay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.4G 40 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.8G 40 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss APO Sonnar T* 135mm f/2 ZF.2 40 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Makro-Planar T 100mm f/2 ZF.2 36 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Samyang 85mm f/1.4 Aspherical IF 36 Amazon/B&H/ebay/Rent
Sigma 85mm F1.4 EX DG HSM 35 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF Nikkor 85mm f/1.4 D IF 33 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron 90mm f/2.8 SP Di MACRO 1:1 VC USD 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF Nikkor 85mm f/1.8D 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Planar T 85mm f/1.4 ZF2 29 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 Di MACRO 29 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 105mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM Macro 28 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best 24-70mm Standard Zoom Lenses for Nikon D800

If you are choosing a standard zoom lens, the new released Tamron 24-70mm lens is the best with highest score even better than AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm. For a zoom lens to score 29 is pretty impressive, especially given the high resolution of the camera, where flaws caused by compromises in optical design are more obvious.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED VR Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 DI VC USD 29 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G ED 28 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 IF EX DG HSM 23 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron SP AF 28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical [IF] 23 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 24-120mm f/4G ED 22 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best 70-200mm Telephoto Zoom Lenses for Nikon D800

The 70-200mm lenses are also very popular for Nikon D800. This focal range covers a lot of requirements and is used regularly by photographers in most genres. The best lens tested on Nikon D800 is the Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD lens. And the well known AF-S 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II takes the second place. The latest released Nikon 70-200mm f/4G ED VR is also a great lens compared to the AF-S 70-200mm f/2.8G II, with a score of 28. This lens costs  only $1399 – a good value for money option – as much as a lens costing over $1000 can be considered value for money.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Tamron SP 70-200mm F/2.8 Di VC USD 31 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II 29 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/4G ED VR 28 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S VR Zoom Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED 26 ebay/Rent/UK/DE
Tamron SP AF 70-200mm F2.8 Di LD (IF) MACRO 26 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 70-200mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM 25 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 70-200mm F2.8 EX DG APO Macro HSM II 25 ebay/Rent
Sigma 70-200mm F2.8 APO EX D 23 ebay/Rent

Best 70-300mm Telephoto Zoom Lenses for Nikon D800

The 70-300mm lenses are often seen as “kit lenses”. They are effectively cheap lenses that offer a decent focal length, but generally the compromises made in achieving the large focal range mean image quality suffers. Of the four lenses, the Nikon AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G IF-ED comes out as the top choice for two reasons – firstly, it has the highest sharpness score of the quartet, managing 12P-Mpix and secondly, because it features Nikon’s Vibration Reduction system. With such a long focal range, having VR is a real benefit in achieving sharp shots while handholding and so this lens makes the best choice.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
AF-S VR Zoom Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G IF-ED 20 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF Zoom Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6D ED 20 ebay/Rent
Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 DG OS 19 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron SP 70-300mm F4-5.6 Di VC USD 19 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best Telephoto Prime lenses for D800

For the Telephoto Prime lenses, there are several great choice for Nikon D800, see the list below. The AF-S NIKKOR 200mm f/2G ED VR II is another DxOMark Best lens.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4E PF ED VR Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 200mm f/2G ED VR II 39 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 400mm f/2.8G ED VR 35 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II 34 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 600mm f/4G ED VR 26 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/4G ED VR II 25 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 300mm f/4D ED-IF Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 800mm f/5.6E FL ED VR Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best Super Telephoto Zoom Lenses for Nikon D800

Of the 7 lenses tested by DxOMark, the best lens is from Sigma, the new Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM lens. The AF-S NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II and new released Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR are another great lenses. For a lower price, there are two that really stand out. The first is not a true super-zoom in the sense of being an all-in-one lens, but instead offers the longest focal length that will be of interest especially to those shooting sports or wildlife. It is the Sigma 120-400mm f/4.5-5.6 DG APO OS HSM. With a sharpness score of 12P-Mpix, it beats the other lenses and doesn’t really lose out greatly in any other area, hence why it top scores with a DxOMark Overall score of 25.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
AF-S NIKKOR 200-500mm f/5.6E ED VR Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron SP 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM 30 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II 25 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR 22 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 120-400mm F4.5-5.6 DG APO OS HSM 19 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF Zoom Nikkor 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED 17 ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR 17 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron 28-300mm F3.5-6.3 XR I A 16 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best Ultra-Wide Lenses for Nikon D800

The Carl Zeiss Distagon 15mm f/2.8  lens is the best ultra-wide angle lens, for the best image quality, offers the highest sharpness levels, with a P-Mpix score of 17. The one thing to remember with this lens though, is that it does not offer any AF as it is a manual lens. Provided you are willing to work within these limitations, it is the best choice in terms of optical performance, with a DxOMark Overall score of 27 and a sharpness score of 17P-Mpix. If you are looking for a lens that is not as expensive, then for value for money, the Sigma 20mm f/1.8 EX DG ASP makes a good choice at substantially less cost than the Zeiss 15mm.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Sigma 20mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 20mm f/1.8G ED 33 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T* 2.8/15 ZF.2 27 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 20mm F1.8 EX DG ASP RF 26 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T 21mm f/2.8 ZF2 25 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Samyang 14mm f/2.8 IF ED UMC Aspherical 25 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF Nikkor 20mm f/2.8D 25 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T 18mm f/3.5 ZF2 22 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 14mm F2.8 EX Aspherical HSM 20 ebay/Rent

Best Wide-angle Prime Lenses for Nikon D800

Within the wide-angle prime lenses, the Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM A lens is the best. The second lens is the Carl Zeiss 35mm f/1.4 but as with the previous Carl Zeiss lens, this is a manual model with no AF. The Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24mm f/1.4G ED is another good wide-angle prime lens except the price.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM A 39 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 24mm f/1.4G ED 34 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T 25mm f/2 ZF2 34 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Samyang 35mm F1.4 AS UMC 34 Amazon/B&H/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T 35mm f/1.4 ZF2 34 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G 33 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T 35mm f/2 ZF2 33 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G 33 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T 28mm f/2 ZF2 29 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF Nikkor 28mm f/2.8D 26 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Milvus 35mm f/2 ZF.2 B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best Wide-angle Zoom Lenses for Nikon D800

From the list, it is clear that Nikon’s 14-24mm is the king of wide-angle zoom lens. The new released AF-S NIKKOR 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G ED lens is just two points after 14-24mm. And both the Tokina AT-X 16-28mm f/2.8 PRO FX Nikon and Nikon AF-S Nikkor 16-35mm f/4G ED VR lenses are sharpness lenses. However, the faster maximum aperture of the Tokina and the lower distortion and chromatic aberration scores see it come out as the best choice scoring 24 to the Nikon’s 23. The fact that it is nearly $500 cheaper ($749 vs $1260) merely serves to make it an even better value for money option. In the Nikon’s favor though, there is a vibration reduction system included, though this is usually less useful in wide-angle shooting.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Tamron SP 15-30mm f/2.8 Di VC USD 28 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED 28 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 24-35mm f/2 DG HSM Art Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G ED 26 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tokina AT-X 16-28 F2.8 PRO FX 24 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 16-35mm f/4G ED VR 23 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Zoom-Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8D IF-ED 21 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 12-24mm F4.5-5.6 EX DG HSM II 17 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 12-24mm f4.5-5.6 EX DG 16 ebay/Rent

Best Macro Lenses for Nikon D800

Macro lenses are also very popular for Nikon D800. From the list, the best Macro lens for Nikon D800 is from Zeiss: The Zeiss Makro Planar T 100mm f/2. The Nikon 105mm f/.8G Macro lens is well known lens, also one of the best choice for Nikon D800.

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Zeiss Makro-Planar T 100mm f/2 ZF2 36 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron 90mm f/2.8 SP Di MACRO 1:1 VC USD 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Makro-Planar T 50mm f/2 ZF2 31 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 70mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro 30 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 Di MACRO 29 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 105mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM Macro 28 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best Lenses Price under $500 for Nikon D800

 

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Prime Lenses
AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.8G 40 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Samyang 85mm f/1.4 Aspherical IF 36 Amazon/B&H/ebay/Rent
Samyang 35mm F1.4 AS UMC 34 Amazon/B&H/ebay/Rent
Sigma 50mm F1.4 EX DG HSM 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 G 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zoom Lenses
Tamron SP AF 28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical [IF] 23 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S VR Zoom Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G IF-ED 20 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF Zoom Nikkor 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED 17 ebay/Rent

Best Lenses Price from $500 – $1,000 for Nikon D800

 

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Prime Lenses
Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM A 39 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 85mm F1.4 EX DG HSM 35 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G 33 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron 90mm f/2.8 SP Di MACRO 1:1 VC USD 32 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zoom Lenses
AF-S NIKKOR 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G ED 26 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron SP AF 70-200mm F2.8 Di LD (IF) MACRO 26 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tokina AT-X 16-28 F2.8 PRO FX 24 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 IF EX DG HSM 23 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best Lenses Price from $1,000 – $1,500 for Nikon D800

 

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Prime Lenses
AF Nikkor 85mm f/1.4 D IF 33 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T 35mm f/2 ZF2 33 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Makro-Planar T 50mm f/2 ZF2 31 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Planar T 85mm f/1.4 ZF2 29 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zoom Lenses
Tamron SP 70-200mm F/2.8 Di VC USD 31 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 DI VC USD 29 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/4G ED VR 28 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Sigma 70-200mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM 25 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 16-35mm f/4G ED VR 23 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 24-120mm f/4G ED 22 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best Lenses Price from $1,500 – $2,000 for Nikon D800

 

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Prime Lenses
AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.4G 40 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Makro-Planar T 100mm f/2 ZF2 36 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T 35mm f/1.4 ZF2 34 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T 25mm f/2 ZF2 34 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G 33 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zoom Lenses
AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED 28 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G ED 28 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S VR Zoom Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED 26 ebay/Rent/UK/DE
AF-S Zoom-Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8D IF-ED 21 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent

Best Lenses Price Over $2,000 for Nikon D800

 

Lens DxOMark Score Check Price at
Prime Lenses
Zeiss Otus 1.4/55 45 B&H/Adorama
Zeiss APO Sonnar T* 135mm f/2 ZF.2 40 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 200mm f/2G ED VR II 39 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 400mm f/2.8G ED VR 35 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II 34 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
AF-S Nikkor 24mm f/1.4G ED 34 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zeiss Distagon T* 2.8/15 ZF.2 27 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Zoom Lenses
AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II 29 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II 25 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR 22 Amazon/B&H/Adorama/ebay/Rent
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