📸 5 MUST-OWN Lenses For Nikon F3 In 2024 [Guide]

Jan 13, 2024 | Buying Guides

Searching for the perfect lens to pair with your Nikon F3? Feeling overwhelmed by the myriad of options available?

It’s time to simplify!

Get ready to discover the best lenses for Nikon F3 in 2024, handpicked and meticulously analyzed in this guide.

Let’s demystify the lens market and elevate your photography game together!

Best Lenses for Nikon F3

My experience as a professional photographer has seen me testing a diverse array of lenses. The Nikon F3 and its compatible lenses recently faced my detailed scrutiny.

For those in search of immediate conclusions, here’s a snapshot of my observations:

Editor's Choice
Best Runner Up
Best Budget

Nikon 50mm f/1.8D Lens

Nikon 135mm f/2.8 Lens

Nikon 35mm f/2D Lens

Unlock captivating clarity and artistic depth with this lens. Unleash your creativity with every shot.

Get closer to perfection with this lens. Capture stunning details and beautiful bokeh for exceptional portraits.

Affordable excellence awaits with this lens. Unleash your vision without breaking the bank.

5.0
4.9
4.7
Editor's Choice

Nikon 50mm f/1.8D Lens

Unlock captivating clarity and artistic depth with this lens. Unleash your creativity with every shot.

5.0
Best Runner Up

Nikon 135mm f/2.8 Lens

Get closer to perfection with this lens. Capture stunning details and beautiful bokeh for exceptional portraits.

4.9
Best Budget

Nikon 35mm f/2D Lens

Affordable excellence awaits with this lens. Unleash your vision without breaking the bank.

4.7

You might be asking, does the Nikon F3 justify its price tag?

Let’s delve into the specifics of this iconic camera, examining its strengths and potential limitations.

Stick around as we ascertain whether the Nikon F3 should be the next addition to your photography toolkit.

black Nikon F3 camera with a lens on a blue background

As a testament to Nikon’s legacy in the world of photography, the Nikon F3, despite being an analogue camera, still holds a special place in my heart in 2024.

Its rock-solid build, combined with timeless design aesthetics and a fully manual control layout, made every click of the shutter an engaging and rewarding experience.

Using it in a digital age is like revisiting a love letter to photography’s roots, reminding me of the beauty in the mechanics and craft.

Indeed:

For those in search of a rich, hands-on experience that blends heritage with function, the Nikon F3 remains a gratifying choice.

#1 Editor’s Choice: Must-Have Prime Lens for Nikon F3

Nikon 50mm f/1.8D Lens

This is budget-friendly prime lens from Nikon company that reproduces distortion-free images with an excellent resolution and beautiful colors.

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  • Lens Type: Normal
  • Mounting Type: Nikon F (FX)
  • Focal Length Range: 50mm
  • Minimum Focus Distance: 0.45 m
  • Weight: 0.34 pounds
  • Dimensions: 2.5 x 2.5 x 1.54 inches

Nikon AF 50mm f/1.8D Lens does not support autofocus with cameras that lack an autofocus motor. In these cases, only the manual focus can be used by photographers. The lens sets the minimum focusing distance of 0,45 m, with a maximum angle of view of 31°30′ for DX format and 46° for FX format.

The maximum reproduction ratio is 0.15 x. The lens reproduces distortion-free images with an excellent resolution and beautiful color rendering. All the pictures with the lens in the matter had a high contrast.

The lens was the best in the “prime” category in the testing phase. One of the things I have noticed is the time I dedicate to focus the picture manually. As a photographer, I am well used to it, but it could take some adjustment for casual users. On the other hand, the picture quality is exquisite.

The lens can be a beautiful asset to anyone looking to improve their portrait photo game. Bokeh’s effects are stunning, and even the f/1.8 aperture can provide excellent performance, especially for portraits taken from a distance.

The f/1.4 could come in handy if your aim is professional work, but for everything below it in rank, an f/1.8 will suffice.

Pros

  • No distortion
  • High-contrast images
  • Exquisite quality
  • Bokeh effects

Cons

  • Focusing

#2 Best Runner-Up: Discover the Best Telephoto Lens for Nikon F3

Nikon 135mm f/2.8 Lens

This Nikon lens comes with a good color reneding, micro-contrast and the lens provides extreme sharpness from corner to corner.

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  • Lens Type: Telephoto
  • Mounting Type: Nikon F
  • Focal Length Range: 135mm
  • Minimum Focus Distance: 1.1 m
  • Weight: 1.35 pounds
  • Dimensions: 5 x 3 x 3 inches

Nikon 135mm f/2.8 lens is an appealing piece of vintage lover hardware. The lens has a minimum focusing distance of 1.3 m and a 52 mm filter. It has a manual focus, making any beginning photographer understand how manual shooting works.

Fast-focusing is possible for users well-versed in the shooting manual. For those yet to become it, it could take a period of adjustment.

The color rendering, coupled with a micro-contrast, impressed me the most about the lens. All of the pictures taken with it appear natural, with beautifully rendered colors. Furthermore, the lens provides extreme sharpness from corner to corner.

The focusing ring operates smoothly and doesn’t cause issues down the road. The weight of the lens is acceptable, despite its relatively effective focal length.

One of the drawbacks is the chromatic aberration at an f/2.8 with backlit subjects or high contrast.

If you intend to shoot fast-moving subjects or have issues with holding a camera still, I highly suggest mounting a tripod. Although the lens could seem outdated, it always delivers impressive performance for today’s standards.

Pros

  • Color rendering
  • Smooth focusing ring
  • Sharpness
  • Impressive performance

Cons

  • Chromatic aberration

#3 Best Budget: The Best Wide-Angle Lens for Nikon F3 Enthusiasts

Nikon 35mm f/2D Lens

This is a compact, lightweight lens for general photography that comes witha Nikon Super Integrated Coating for minimizing flare and ghosting.

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  • Lens Type: Wide Angle
  • Mounting Type: Nikon FX
  • Focal Length Range: 35mm
  • Minimum Focus Distance: 0.25 m
  • Weight: 0.45 pounds
  • Dimensions: 1.77 x 2.56 x 2.56 inches

Nikon AF 35mm f/2D lens is a compact, lightweight lens for general photography. It has a maximum reproduction ratio of 0.24x.62 degrees. Furthermore, it comes with a Nikon Super Integrated Coating for minimizing flare and ghosting.

The lens also provides an excellent color balance. The maximum aperture sets at an f/2, making the lens perfect for low light and handheld shooting situations. The closest focusing distance is 2,60 cm.

Although the lens is not zooming, it provides pretty reliable performance for wide-angle photography. The lens focuses as fast as any of my other lenses. It is designed for smaller digital sensors and comes with a relatively wide aperture.

Focusing speed is reliable, yet I think it could be faster. It does hunting. The lens is an excellent pair for Nikon F3 or other cameras requiring an aperture ring or a direct coupled motor.

The picture quality is satisfactory. Pictures appear great in terms of sharpness and color rendering. In terms of design, the lens falls under the lowlight category and easily fits in the camera bag. If you can deal with manual focusing and hunting now and then, I would say buying this lens is an excellent decision.

Pros

  • Minimum flare and ghosting
  • Color balance
  • Focus speed
  • Good image quality

Cons

  • Some hunting

#4 Unleash Your Creativity with the Best All-Around Lens for Nikon F3

Nikon 80-200mm F/4.5 Lens

The image quality is impeccable, with extreme sharpness all around the corners. It is incredibly sharp even at wide-open apertures.

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  • Lens Type: Macro
  • Mounting Type: Nikon F(DX), Nikon DX, Nikon FX, Nikon F
  • Focal Length Range: 80-200 mm
  • Minimum Focus Distance: 1.5m
  • Weight: 0.55 pounds
  • Dimensions: 3.4 x 2.8 x 2.8 inches

Nikon 80-200mm f/4.5 zoom is a superior all-around lens built like a tank that can tackle every weather condition. The lens is practically indestructible, and the materials used in the design are of high-level quality.

Although the lens’s weight could deter some users from using it as a walk-around lens, if you appreciate a powerful zoom, you will love it.

The lens in the matter is manual, so be ready for it. It has a slippery pull and pushes zoom adjustment that could take some practice to master. On the other hand, the lens is quite sharp, especially if you are well-versed in focusing on the subject.

The image quality is impeccable, with extreme sharpness all around the corners. It is incredibly sharp, even at wide-open apertures.

The lens has an optical construction of twelve elements in nine groups. It is also multi-coated with the Nikon Super Integrated coating to give it good flare and ghosting resistance. The diaphragm has seven straight blades, while the aperture ring is all metal.

The lens also supports 52 mm metal filters. The manual focus action is smooth, while the bokeh is flawless. Barrel distortion is moderate yet visible at 80mm and non-existent in the 105-200 mm range.

Pros

  • Build Quality
  • Powerful zoom
  • Sharpness
  • Ghosting resistance

Cons

  • Slippery pull

#5 Elevate Your Nikon F3 Photography with the Ultimate Macro Lens

Nikon 55mm f/2.8 Lens

Nikon 55mm f/2.8 delivers crisp images and it provides a beautiful background blur, while also being exceptionally sharp and having excellent performance.

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  • Lens Type: Macro
  • Mounting Type: Nikon F
  • Focal Length Range: 55mm
  • Minimum Focus Distance: 0.25 m
  • Weight: 0.64 pounds
  • Dimensions: 6 x 8 x 8 inches

Nikon’s 55mm f/2.8 lens has a filter size of 52 mm, and it comes with a close-range correction system. The focus sets at 18 inches, but with no focus to infinity. The lens comes with a manual guide, and it delivers crisp images.

It provides a beautiful background blur at a wider aperture. Seven blades are apparent on circular highlights at a narrow end of the spectrum in terms of the gap.

The lens is exceptionally sharp and provides excellent macro photography performance. However, it is a focal length for every possible close-up scenario. The bokeh effect is pleasing, so it is also entirely usable for portrait shots.

The focusing ring provides smoothness, which could also work excellent fs. During the testing, I didn’t notice chromatic aberrations or vignetting.

The lens’s body is full metal, with a focusing ring is a flawless piece of work. You will not need a lens hood since the lens’s front element is well tucked inside. Since the lens is manual focus only, the front element doesn’t rotate during focusing.

In conclusion, if you don’t matter manual focus tweaking, the lens is a great buy.

Pros

  • Crisp images
  • Very sharp
  • Smooth focusing ring
  • No vignetting

Cons

  • Manual focus

The Ultimate Nikon F3 Lens FAQ: Expert Answers to Your Questions

What lens to get for Nikon F3?

The Nikon F3 camera uses the Nikon F-mount system, which makes it compatible with a wide range of lenses. Here are a few recommendations:

Nikkor 50mm f/1.4: This is a classic lens perfect for everyday photography due to its compact size and excellent image quality.

Nikon 85mm f/1.8: This lens is fantastic for portrait photography, offering a beautiful bokeh effect and excellent sharpness.

Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8: If you’re looking for versatility, this zoom lens provides a great range for various shooting scenarios.

Nikon 105mm f/2.8 Macro: This is a great choice if you’re interested in macro photography. The lens offers a 1:1 reproduction ratio for high detail capture.

Can I use all Nikon F-mount lenses on my Nikon F3?

Yes, the Nikon F3 is compatible with nearly all Nikon F-mount lenses. However, you should ensure the lens meets your specific photography needs and style.

Is it beneficial to have multiple lenses for my Nikon F3?

Having multiple lenses can greatly expand your photographic possibilities. Different lenses are designed for different shooting scenarios – for instance, a wide-angle lens for landscapes, a telephoto lens for wildlife, or a macro lens for close-up shots.

What lens should I choose for portrait photography with my Nikon F3?

For portrait photography, a lens with a focal length between 85mm to 135mm is often recommended. The Nikon 85mm f/1.8 is a particularly good choice due to its sharpness and pleasing bokeh effect.

Best lenses for Nikon f3 – Verdict

Nikon F3 is a beautifully manufactured camera with a stylish and representative design that still catches attention, despite being over 40 years old. It showcased the iconic red stripe, which you can see on many new Nikon models.

The list lenses are not the only ones you can pair F3 with; they sure provide the most pleasing aesthetic and performance. If you are looking for high-end optics, pick out any of the lenses from the list, and prepare to tackle photography without autofocus!

There are other guides on our blog that you can visit, for example, the Nikon D5200 lenses and the Nikon D5100 lens guide.

In conclusion, the best lenses for your Nikon f3 camera are right here in this article!

Choose wisely, and you won’t regret it!

BEST RECOMMENDATION:

Nikon 50mm f/1.8D Lens

This is budget-friendly prime lens from Nikon company that reproduces distortion-free images with an excellent resolution and beautiful colors.

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More Nikon F Series guides:

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Stacy WItten

Stacy WItten

Owner, Writer & Photographer

Stacy Witten, owner and creative force behind LensesPro, delivers expertly crafted content with precision and professional insight. Her extensive background in writing and photography guarantees quality and trust in every review and tutorial.

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2 Comments

  1. The 55mm Nikor doesn’t have VR support, obviously, because it’s a manual focus lens with no electronics. The 35mm f2 doesn’t even open up to 1.8. The 50mm 1.8D DOES have a physical aperture ring; you can literally see it in the image you used.

    Reply
    • Hi Kevin,

      1. I never said that 55mm Nikon lens have VR
      2. The 35mm f/2 lens, has a focal length of 2, not 1.8.
      3. I never said 50mm 1.8D doesn’t have the aperture ring

      I don’t understand the point of your comment sir?

      Reply

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