In the world of photography, the camera is only as good as its lens. So, whether you’re a budding enthusiast or an experienced shutterbug looking to expand your photographic horizons, you need a high-performance lens to match your high-performing talents. If you’re the proud owner of a Nikon D3500, you’re already well aware that this camera is up to the standard; its compact size, user-friendly interface, and remarkable image quality have made it a favorite among beginner and amateur photographers alike. But which is the best lens for Nikon D3500.
to truly harness the power of this entry-level DSLR, you need the right lens – one that complements the D3500’s features and allows you to explore your creative boundaries. We’ve found the top 5 best lenses for Nikon DS3500, all evaluated against the criteria that matter most to photographers: quality, features, value and more. So, let’s pop off that lens cap, and get ready to capture your true photography talent!
Product Comparison Table: Best Lens for Nikon D3500
|Best in class
|Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G
|Best for Low Light
Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G
|Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 EX DC OS HSM
|Tamron AF 70-300mm f/4.0-5.6 Di LD
|Nikon AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR
The Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G is an F-mount lens, specifically designed for DX format cameras. It offers a picture angle of 44 degrees, equivalent to 52.5 millimeters in 35-millimeter terms. It also features rear focusing with manual focus override, allowing for precise control over your shots. Plus, it boasts a versatile aperture range from f/1.8 to f/22 – despite the compact dimensions. The NIKKOR is also equipped with a Silent Wave Motor AF system, which ensures fast and quiet autofocus. It accepts screw-on filters, and is compatible with both DX and FX formats when used in DX crop mode.
- 44 degree/52.5mm picture angle
- Compact with wide aperture range
- Silent Wave Motor AF system
- Limited image stabilisation
The Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G is the first on our list, and the best lens for Nikon D3500 if you like to shoot in lots of different light levels. This lens is known for its sharpness and wide aperture, making it an excellent choice for low-light photography and portraits. No matter how dark the area, you’re guaranteed ot get shots that match the experience of the human eye as closely as possible.
The Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR is an all-in-one zoom lens, with both wide angle (18mm) and telephoto (140mm) capabilities. 4 stops of VR image stabilization give you sharper handheld shots in low light and at telephoto distances, whilst advanced NIKKOR optics and lens technologies back up high-resolution DX-format image sensors. Meanwhile, the versatile 7.8x zoom range (18mm to 140mm) lets you shoot everything from wide-angle family portraits to telephoto close-ups on the sports field. You can even get as close as 1.48-feet from your subject for macro-style close-ups.
- Wide angle and telephoto capabilities
- Image sensors and VR stabilisation
- 7.8x zoom range
- Very snug fit
The Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR is a compact all-in-one lens that’s ready for anything, making it our best lens for Nikon D3500 in terms of versatility. If you’re looking for an outstanding grab-and-go lens – the kind you’ll keep on your camera for nearly every situation – this one will do the trick. It covers a seriously broad focal range, from wide-angle to telephoto, making it suitable every situations from landscapes to portraits.
The Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 EX DC OS HSM may look like a standard zoom lens, but it boasts a large aperture and stabilization features that promise impeccable image quality. Its construction includes 17 elements arranged in 13 groups, with FLD glass for performance on par with fluorite lenses. The package also includes essential accessories such as a carrying case, lens hood, and front and rear caps for added convenience. However, it’s worth noting that the optical stabilization (OS) feature is not available in mounts designed for Pentax and Sony cameras. Additionally, it offers a maximum magnification of 1:5 and a minimum focusing distance of 28 centimeters (11 inches), making it pretty versatile too.
- Excellent quality construction
- Comes with a range of accessories
- 11 speed modes and 5 functions
- No OS with Sony or Pentax mounts
We’ve reviewed a lot of zoom lenses on this list, but the Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 EX DC OS HSM is our best lens for Nikon D3500 out of all of them. This Sigma lens offers a constant f/2.8 aperture throughout the zoom range, providing great low-light performance and flexibility for various shooting scenarios – without losing any quality. The only downside is the incompatibility issue, but seeing as you’re looking for the best lens for Nikon D3500, that won’t bother you!
The Tamron AF 70-300mm f/4.0-5.6 Di LD is a compact tele-zoom lens with macro 1:2 function. This ‘Macro Switchover’ mechanism allows a minimum focus distance of 0.95m within the focal length range of 180-300mm. You can fill the entire frame with subjects of apx. 5 x 7cm size, at a maximum magnification ratio of 1:2, ideal for capturing images of flowers, insects and very small objects. On top of this, Low Dispersion (LD) glass elements in this lens help reduce chromatic aberration; the tendency of light of different colors to come to different points of focus at the image plane. This eliminates that particular problem at long focal lengths (the telephoto end of the zoom range), whilst also cutting out the lateral chromatic aberration (towards the edges of the field) that often occurs at short focal lengths.
- Macro Switchover mechanism
- Low Dispersion (LD) glass elements
- Great value low price
- Slow and loud
For photographers who don’t have a lot of money to spend, the excellent value Tamron AF 70-300mm f/4.0-5.6 Di LD is the best lens for Nikon D3500. Yet it’s not all about the price; if you’re getting interested in wildlife or sports photography, too, this is a great choice. It offers a long reach at an affordable price, making it a good option for beginners. It’s all thanks to that unsurpassed close-focusing ability: down to 0.95m (3.1 feet ) or 1:2 in macro mode.
The Nikon AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR has an ultra-wide-angle view that gives you plenty of space to play with; the angle of view goes from 109 degrees to 70 degrees, wider than any other lens on this list. Alongside the angle, it also has a minimum focus distance of 0.22 meters ( 0.8 feet) from the focal plane at all zoom positions. The near-silent autofocus stepping motor is ideal for recording video, or taking photos without disturbing your subject. Meanwhile, vibration reduction (VR) image stabilization keeps handheld photos and videos sharp, and helps with low-light shooting. It also accepts filters, and a UV one can be included for a slightly higher price.
- Silent and sturdy zoom
- Ultra-wide angle lens
- VR image stabilization
- Slow autofocus
Sick of not being able to fit that whole skyline into shot? If you want to explore wide-angle photography and capture stunning seamless landscapes, the Nikon AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR is your best lens for Nikon D3500. It provides an ultra-wide focal range with impressive vibration reduction (VR) technology. The autofocus might be a little slow, but manual focussing is an important skill for any photographer to master!