Must-have Nikon Lenses for Wedding Photography (Updated for 2021)

Michael Sand
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The Nikon D750 is a new kind of camera from Nikon aimed at enthusiast photographers. It’s Nikon’s most affordable full-frame camera ever, and it blows away the awesome D610 at a much more affordable price.

For some time now, wedding and reportage photographers have been creating something called a hybrid workflow, mixing the best DSLR features (superior image quality and responsiveness) with the best mirrorless features (lighter weight and even smaller size).

The Nikon D750 brings all of these features that we’ve come to love, to a full-frame, budget-friendly, highly customizable camera.

The Nikon D750 has got a lot of great features for wedding photographers but let’s take a look at the five essential lenses for this camera body.

NameCategoryProduct
Nikon AF FX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G Fixed Focal Length LensBest OverallNikon AF FX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G Fixed Focal Length Lens
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G LensBudget PickNikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G Lens
Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II AF-S Nikkor Zoom LensUpgrade PickNikon 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II AF-S Nikkor Zoom Lens

1. Nikon AF FX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G Fixed Focal Length Lens

Our rating: 9 / 10

Nikon AF FX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G Fixed Focal Length Lens

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Black (Model: 35mm f/1.4 G AF-S)

If you're a wedding photographer and haven't invested in this lens yet, you're missing out on a lot. This is one of the very old and powerful Nikon lenses that have been in circulation for years. Its slim and stylish design makes it fit in with the most cameras, including the Nikon D3100. Despite its simple look, this lens adds a lot of oomph to each photo recording.

A lot of professionals prefer this lens because of the great value it brings at an affordable price. It's a great way to start investing in professional equipment without spending a fortune. One of the best features of this lens is that it gives you access to one of the best blurred backgrounds you'll ever get out of your DSLR camera. The AF-S with auto focus definitely takes out all the guesswork, so you don't have to worry about not getting the perfect shot.

2. Nikon AF S NIKKOR 85mm f/1.8G Fixed Lens

Our rating: 9 / 10

Nikon AF S NIKKOR 85mm f/1.8G Fixed Lens

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Pros:

  • Unique portrait length allows to take pictures of not so simple things
  • Easy use, solid construction
  • Can be used for video shooting
  • Good price

FX

3. Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G Lens

Our rating: 9 / 10

Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G Lens

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Pros:

  • Innovative Vibration Reduction (VR) Technology
  • Equipped with a Silent Wave Motor for Fast, Quiet AF
  • Max Aperture of f/1.4
  • Low-Light Versatility (Great for Portraits)
  • Wide FOV (66.8 degrees)

Cons:

  • Cumbersome and Large
  • Minor Autofocus Drawback in Low Light

Best lens for Nikon D800/D810; also great for D7000/D700. Allows you to take portrait shots in extremely low-light situations with full out-of-focus backgrounds.

This is the lens that you want for low light, but if you want something for day-time or other lighting, I suggest the Nikon 35mm f/1.8 instead.

This Nikon lens essentially has a candle-lit function on it for wedding photography.

4. Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II AF-S Nikkor Zoom Lens

Our rating: 8 / 10

Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II AF-S Nikkor Zoom Lens

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Pros:

  • Seriously excellent lens
  • Very sharp
  • Great color
  • Very fast focus; can focus on fast-moving subjects easily
  • Ergonomic design is perfect for your hands
  • Excellent build quality

Cons:

  • Price
  • It’s heavy for me
  • A little noisy; a tad slower auto-focus than other lenses

I realize that most wedding photographers started with a 50mm lens, but it’s time to move on to something a bit bigger to take better portraits of people. The Nikon 70-200 f/2.8 is without a doubt my favorite lens for wedding photography.

This amazing lens successfully combines top-level optics with ergonomics, usability, and low weight. It also delivers outstanding sharpness across the frame and throughout its zoom range.

New for the 2015 model is a constant f/2.8 maximum aperture. This means that this lens is incredibly fast and it has significantly less vignetting than the previous model.

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

Our rating: 6 / 10

Nikon AF-S VR Micro-NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED Lens

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I recently upgraded my kit to this lens. It has become one of my goto lenses. It’s perfect for standing a bit back from the bride and groom yet still capturing close details. This lens is compact and has the ability to focus very close. I’ve gotten some great close ups during the ring exchange. This particular lens also focuses on moving subjects while the focus isn’t being adjusted. For a macro lens it’s not going to be tack sharp at f/2.8, but the bokeh is pleasing. It will be much better at f/4,5,8 etc.

Warren doesn’t like the recycle time with this for the bride and groom portraits.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the best Nikon camera lens for wedding photography?

The best Nikon camera lens for wedding photography is the 50mm f1.8 or the 50mm f1.4. These are affordable, Nikon-brand lenses that shoot nice clean images. It's the one I personally recommend for every photographer, and it's the most popular lens on the market.

The 50mm focal length on a full frame camera is the native 35mm focal length. So my single most commonly recommended lens is also the most obvious.

A cheaper, but still quite good lens is Sigma's 35mm f1.4. It's not quite as sharp in the corners, but it's a little less than half the cost. The Sigma 35mm f1.4 is my second recommendation to first-time shoppers.

What lens should I buy for wedding photography?

Whether you’re shooting with a Nikon d7100, d7200, or a mid-range mirrorless DSLR like the Nikon d5600, you will want good quality glass in your bag. Here are the lenses we recommend you consider:

Ultrawide: This is your bread-and-butter lens for an average-sized wedding. It’ll give you a great range of room for a shoot-and-run presentation of the reception.

Super Telephoto Zoom: After doing your initial shoot-and-run, you’ll want to sneak back into the venue at some point to sneak in a few long lenses. This is the best range for shooting the details at your wedding.

What 3 lenses should every photographer have?

The Master Lens Kit below features a wide variety of lenses which means that you can have a lens for every shooting situation…giving you several options so that you don't have to switch lenses as often.

Since the lenses are all Nikon lenses, they are interchangeable with one another which saves you money by not having to buy multiple bodies. You'll be able to use all 3 lenses on your D750.

As for which lenses to get within that kit, I would start with the wide angle lens and the 70-300. Then, the macro lens, which is more fun to use anyways.

What lens do professional photographers use?

This is one of the most common questions asked by aspiring wedding photographers. When photographers ask their peers what lens they should purchase next, the answers vary, but it usually comes down to a few high-quality lenses that are hailed as the best in the business.

In this section, we cover the general landscape of lenses used by wedding photographers, although some photographers do use others as well. In the section following, we’ll dive into some specific lenses that have become very popular.

Conclusion

The Nikon D750 is the most popular choice for wedding photographers due to its excellent image quality, affordable price point, fast continuous shooting speed of 6.5 fps, and great dynamic range. It also has built-in Wi-Fi and GPS connectivity that helps photographers easily transfer photos to their smartphones and upload them to social media.

Based on our research and testing, these are the most popular and essential lenses for wedding photography with the Nikon D750. The following lenses come highly recommended as reliable, cost effective, and suitable for the job for any budget.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Nikon AF FX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G Fixed Focal Length LensBest OverallNikon AF FX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G Fixed Focal Length Lens
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G LensBudget PickNikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G Lens
Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II AF-S Nikkor Zoom LensUpgrade PickNikon 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II AF-S Nikkor Zoom Lens