Guide to the 6 Best Nikon D60 Lenses

By Nathaniel Stephan
Last Updated: January 20, 2022
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The Best Nikon D60 Lenses

If you know the focal length of lens you are looking for, have a look at the best lenses for the Nikon D60 below.

Best Zoom Lenses for Nikon D60

One of the most affordable and good zoom lens is the Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 G, one of the kit lenses bundled with the Nikon D60. The 18-55mm is going to be excluded as it is already attached to the camera.

Wide zoom lenses are included in the wide angle lens section.

Telephoto zoom lenses are perfect with the Nikon D60 for action, portraits,wildlife, sports, or any distant subject.

Nikon 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR

Nikon 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G Kit Lens for Nikon D60
  • Silent Wave Motor (SWM) for Fast and Quiet Autofocus
  • Vibration Reduction Image Stabilization for Superb Handheld Shots
  • Covers a Massive Focal Length Coverage
  • Great Lens for Action Photography with the Nikon D60

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The primary attraction of the Nikon 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G is the range the lens has paired with image stabilization. It will be a very good pick anytime you cannot get nearer to what you would like to take a picture of. Like the other zooms, the aperture of f/5.6 at the far end of the zoom range is a bit small, wider aperture alternatives are significantly more.

You won't have to break the bank to get this piece of glass. There are an abundance of pre-owned copies for sale as it was included with the Nikon D5500, D5600, and D3400 cameras.

The enormous zoom range of the lens is constructed of 17 elements in 11 groups. Two of the elements are extra-low dispersion and one is a high refractive index element to ensure sharp images.

It weighs in at 580g (18.7 oz), with dimensions of (Diameter x Length) 3.0 in. (76.5 mm) x 4.8 in. (123 mm). While not small, it can still easily be carried around on the camera or in your bag.

Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5.6G ED IF AF-S DX VR

Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5.6 G telephoto for Nikon D60
  • Excellent Value When Purchased Second-hand
  • Silent Wave Motor for Accurate Autofocus
  • Very good for Wildlife, Sports, Action, & Portraits
  • 2 Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) Lens Elements
  • (VR) Vibration Reduction Image Stabilization

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The Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5. 6G was regularly bundled with the D3100, D3300 And D2300 dslrs. It's a incredible deal when bought second-hand.

A copy in good cosmetic condition are available for not even half the going rate a second-hand Nikon 55-300mm.

The only disadvantage of the 55-200mm is the loss of 100mm of reach. It still has VR image stabilization and to help you get sharp images when hand-holding the camera.

One good thing about the lens is that carrying it around won't be a huge concern. It only weighs 335g (11.8 oz) with dimensions of (Diameter x Length) 2.9 in. (73.6 mm) x 3.9 in. (99.5 mm).

Tamron Auto Focus 70-300mm f/4.0-5.6 Di LD

Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Super Telephoto Zoom Lens for Nikon D60
  • Ultra Silent Drive (USD) Autofocus Motor
  • Extra Low Dispersion (XLD) Glass Element
  • Broad-Band Anti-Reflection (BBAR) Lens Coating
  • 9 Aperture Blades for Beautiful Bokeh
  • Minimal focus distance 59.1"

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The Tamron 70-300mm is a good pick if you want 300mm of reach, but don't want to pay as much for the 55-300mm from Nikon.

One big disadvantage is that there is no image stabilization. This will make it harder to get sharp images hand holding the lens.

Very similar optical image stabilization is included in the Tamron as found in the Nikons. All of them have extra-low dispersion elements and anti-reflective lens coatings.

The lens weighs 16.1oz (458g). It has a length of 5.6" and diameter of 3.2".

Best Wide Angle Lenses

A wide angle lens is helpful for landscapes, astrophotography, architecture, group photos, real estate photography, and more.

One thing to watch out for is the wide angle causing strong distortion. Portraits can be a challenge as body parts such as a nose close to the lens will appear unusually large.

A benefit of a wide angle is that image stabilization is not as essential. Small vibrations of movements are less likely to be noticeable in a picture.

Having a large maximum aperture is important for astrophotography. You want at least a f/4, if not f/2.8.

Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 AT-X116 Pro DX II

Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 Wide Angle Zoom Lens for Nikon D60
  • Perfect choice for landscapes or night photography
  • Fast f/2.8 Max Aperture
  • Front Filter Threads are 77mm
  • Focus Clutch Type M/A Selector

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The Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 is fast and sharp. With the large aperture, this lens is a great option for astrophotography.

One key feature of the lens is the focus clutch that controls changing between manual focus and autofocus. To switch focus, the entire focus ring is either pushed forward or pulled back.

There is a built-in autofocus motor, but it is loud. This will be an issue if you need quiet operation when shooting in a theater or at an event.

In terms of size, the lens is fairly large. It weighs 550g (1.21 lbs) with dimensions of 4.02 x 4.02 x 4.02 in (L x W x H).

Be careful when you look to buy the lens. Tokina also makes versions that use a different lens mount like the Canon EF or Sony A mounts. Double check to make sure the lens you buy is compatible with Nikon.

Sigma 10-20mm f/3.5 EX DC HSM ELD SLD Aspherical

Sigma 10-20mm f/3.5 Wide Zoom for Nikon D60
  • Hyper-Sonic Motor (HSM)
  • Ultra-wide angle lens
  • Internal Focus and Excellent Build Quality
  • Super Multi-Layer Coating
  • Built with Aspherical Elements that Reduce Distortion

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The Sigma 10-20mm f/3.5 falls into the same price range as the Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8. It has a larger zoom range, but a slightly smaller maximum aperture.

At 10mm the lens is going to produce an exaggerated distorted perspective. You're likely going to see distortion, which you can reduce through post-processing.

4 aspherical elements have been employed to help reduce distortion and aberrations. In total there are 13 lens elements in 10 groups to ensure the best image quality possible.

All that glass doesn't make the lens too heavy, coming in at a weight of 520g (18.3 oz). Dimensions are diameter of 3.4" (87.3mm) and length of 3.5" (88.2mm).

Be careful if you are looking to purchase this lens. Sigma also made copies of the lens for other DSLR camera mounts including, Canon EF, Sony A, and Pentax K mounts. Make sure the one you buy uses the Nikon F lens mount.

Best Telephoto Lenses

The 55-300mm & 55-200mm lenses included in the zoom section are also the lenses to look for first if you need a telephoto lens.

This section is going to take a look at telephoto prime lenses for sports, action, wildlife, and portrait photography. There is no shortage of these lenses available for the Nikon F-mount.

However, telephoto prime lenses tend to be expensive because the amount of optics that need to be utilised. The weight of the lens and ergonomics when mounted on a camera body need to be taken into account. The right lens the one that is easy to handle and use so you can capture memorable pictures.

Nikon AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.8G

Nikon 85mm f/1.8 G Portrait Lens for Nikon D60
  • Best Lens for Portraits
  • Internal Focus (IF)
  • Silent Wave Motor (SWM)
  • Superb Color Reproduction

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The Nikon 85mm f/1.8G is one of the best Nikon lenses for professional photographers. It's a fast lens that delivers excellent images and pleasing bokeh.

The 85mm 1.8G is a full frame lens. You'll notice two differences when comparing it against a DX lens.

First, full frame lenses are usually more expensive than DX lenses. They have larger lens elements, which translates to additional cost.

Second, the lens is larger than many DX lenses. While not a huge issue, if you plan to carry it around with another lens, you'll definitely need a bag.

Nikon AF-S FX Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G

Nikon 50mm f/1.8 G Prime Lens for Nikon D60
  • Excellent Lens with a Fast Aperture
  • Silent Wave Motor (SWM)
  • Small and Lightweight
  • Excellent Choice for Low Light Photography

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Taking the crop factor focal length multiplier into account, this lens could be thought of as a short telephoto lens. It is an affordable fast prime that can be utilized for portraits and indoor photography.

The FX 50mm f/1.8G provides more reach than the DX 35mm f/1.8G, while still having a comparable price.

There are not huge differences between the lenses. With the 50mm, you'll get a bit more reach and blurring the background will be less challenging.

It weighs 185g (6.6 oz) and has dimensions of (Diameter x Length) 2.83" x 2.01".

Best First Prime

Nikon AF-S DX 35mm f/1.8G

Nikon DX 35mm f/1.8 G Best Prime for Nikon D60
  • Very Accurate Autofocus Performance
  • Takes Very good Pictures in Tricky Lighting Situations
  • Excellent Nikon D60 lens for street photography
  • High Build Quality
  • Best option for an all around lens

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The Nikon AF-S DX 35mm f/1.8G is the best first prime lens to get for the Nikon D60.

A maximum aperture of f/1.8, means you'll be able to isolate your subjects and create beautiful bokeh. Indoors the lens is fast enough to where you will not need to use flash.

With a 35mm equivalent field of view of 52.5mm, you'll have a "standard" field of view. Your photos will have a perspective that is similar to what is seen by human eyes.

Weighing just 200g (7oz), there's never a reason not to have the lens with you. With dimensions of (Diameter x Length) 2.8 in. (70 mm) x 2.1 in. (52.5 mm), you can easily keep it in a coat pocket or bag.

Macro Photography Best Nikon D60 Lenses

Macro photography starts with a reproduction ratio of 1:1. That 1:1 ratio can also be referred to as life size or 1X magnification.

Those terms mean that the subject being photographed is the same size as the camera's sensor. Popular subjects are insects, coins, copy work, flowers, and academic subjects.

There are other ways to achieve macro magnification, such as extensions tubes. I find that a macro lens is easier to use and get better results with. That's because a macro lens tends to have a larger minimum focus distance.

As a quick note, Nikon branded their macros as Micro-Nikkor lenses. This is a constant source of confusion as micro and macro have opposite meanings.

Nikon Micro-Nikkor 40mm f/2.8G

Nikkor Micro 40mm f/2.8 G Macro Photography Nikon D60
  • Close-Range Correction System (CRC)
  • Silent Wave Motor (SWM)
  • Maximum Reproduction Ratio of 1X
  • Well Built with a Rubber Sealing Mount Protects Against Dust and Moisture
  • Excellent option for Close Ups

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The Nikon Micro-Nikkor 40mm f/2.8G is the best option for getting started with macro and close-up photography with the Nikon D60.

As far as modern macro lenses go, the lens is relatively inexpensive. It also has a high-quality autofocus motor and uses current optics.

This means the lens can also be made use of for general photography. That's not the case with older macros, as their image quality only becomes razor sharp after the lens has been stopped down.

The lens weighs 235g (8.3 oz) with dimensions (diameter x length) of 2.7 in. (68.5 mm) x 2.5 in. (64.5 mm).

Nikon AF-S DX Micro Nikkor 85mm f/3.5G ED VR

Nikkor Micro 85mm f/3.5 Macro Lens for Nikon D60
  • Super Integrated Coating (SIC) to reduce Chromatic Aberration
  • Maximum Reproduction Ratio of 1X
  • Built with Internal Focus (IF)
  • VR - Vibration Reduction Image Stabilization

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The main benefit of the 85mm macro lens over the 40mm is a longer working distance. That's the distance from the front of the lens to the subject.

At 1X magnification, the front of the lens is going to be close to the subject. If you are trying to photograph an insect, this may cause them to try to get away.

Another issue could be properly lighting a subject. Depending on your light source it could be difficult to get it setup without the lens blocking it.

The downside is that a little more working distance adds to the cost of the lens.

While not the primary purpose of the lens, it can be used for portraits, but the f/3.5 maximum aperture might not create the best background bokeh.

Lens Selection Criteria

  • Overall Image Quality
  • Price to Performance
  • Focal Length Range

Having a high-quality lens is of greater value for image quality than a pricey camera. Lenses don't wear out, you will be able to keep your lenses if you ever decide to upgrade your Nikon D60.

That doesn't mean that price is not a factor. It doesn't seem sensible to advise using high priced lenses, even if they are the highest quality.

All the most commonly utilized focal lengths have been included.

Professional or niche lenses such as mirror, perspective control, macro, and fisheye lenses have not been covered. They are high-priced enough to also recommend a camera upgrade.

When to Upgrade Your Camera

The Nikon D60 was released in 2008. It should be come as no surprise that there are many Nikon D60 upgrade options available. One of the nice things is that you can still use the same lenses with a more recent camera, the bulk of with seamless compatibility.

Having access to different focal lengths, a fast prime, or a cutting edge lens will do more for you than a brand new camera. However, it is hard to overlook the high resolution available from a newer APS-C camera body as well as fast continuous shooting speed and more white balance options.

The price of a second-hand Nikon D60 replacement is a tiny fraction of the price when the camera was brand new. That same drop in price also applies to more recent camera models.

An upgrade that is a great match for what you want is most likely more cost-effective than you would think if you will be willing to sell your D60 camera as soon as you have an upgrade.

Types of Lenses

Focal Lengths

  • Wide Angle - Captures a large angle of view of a scene. These have a short focal length.
  • Standard - Has a field of view that looks "natural" when viewed by people. Any focal length between 35mm to 50mm.
  • Telephoto - Lenses with a narrow field of view, helpful for subjects that are far away or small. Wildlife photos are a popular use for this type of focal length.
  • Macro - Has the ability to take images close up to a subject at a 1:1 magnification ratio of subject to sensor size.
  • Fisheye - Ultra wide-angle lenses that produce distorted circular images.

Zoom vs Prime

  • Zoom - The focal length is variable. The zoom range covered will be different, but manufacturers are always trying to make better zooms.
  • Prime - Lenses with a fixed focal length. Usually, they have larger apertures than zoom lenses. Larger apertures are better for low light condition and creating blurry backgrounds with a telephoto lens. Better ones will have razor sharp image clarity.

Compatible Lenses

Nikon F Mount

The D60 camera needs Nikon F-mount lenses. The F-mount was first employed on Nikon cameras in 1959. There are many different variations of the lens mount as it has been changed over time to support digital SLR cameras.

The first lenses with autofocus relied on a focus motor built into camera bodies. The Nikon D60 is one of the only entry level digital SLR cameras to have the focus motor built-in. As a result, autofocus will work with early autofocus lenses.

The Nikon D60 does not have a meter coupling ridge or EE servo coupling post. Light metering won't work correctly for manual lenses without electrical contacts. AF lenses with physical aperture rings will likely need to be stopped down to their smallest aperture.

Nikon D60 Kit Lens

The Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED AF-S DX VR was originally bundled with the Nikon D60. This was most commonly sold with pre-owned D60's for sale on eBay or Amazon.

It is in a growing crowd dx nikkor lenses that have been sold with cameras over the years. These make up the right lens choice for a majority of the anticipated needs of a Nikon D60 owner.

In very difficult low light conditions using fill flash from the camera will help. Compatible lighting equipment like Nikon's creative lighting system will probably be beneficial if you can purchase second hand flashes that are inexpensive enough.

If you don't have this lens, it is a very good first choice for the camera. The focal length, inclusion of image stabilization, and performance is solid, especially considering the low price of a second hand copy. The one undesirable aspect is the f/5.6 aperture at the long end.

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