Best Lens For Nikon D3400 DSLR Camera
Although the Nikon D3400 DX camera is succeeded by Nikon D3500, it is still every beginner photographer's favorite because it is small, lightweight, and has a video capture resolution of 1080/60p. But remember, the D3400's performance depends heavily on the lens that you use with it. Using a D3400 with a sub-par lens can limit the camera's 24.2 MP sensor's capabilities. But if you use the right lens, the resulting photos and videos can be breath-taking.
I'm Evangeline, a photography expert based out of Fort Collins, Colorado. I have been conducting many workshops for students regarding the different photography and videography techniques for ten years.
I have gained enough experience with the different cameras, lenses, and other photography stuff through these years. So, I know which lens is the best for your needs.
In this article, I have listed ten lenses that can give you fantastic results with the Nikon D3400. I have included the best ones from the wide-angle, ultra-wide, and telephoto range that will offer an ideal balance of performance, image quality, and portability.
I have also included a buying guide and a FAQ section at the end of the article to help you choose one wisely. With that said, let me take you through my list.
Table of Contents
- 10 BEST LENS FOR NIKON D3400 REVIEW
- 1. NIKON AF-S DX NIKKOR 35MM F/1.8G - BEST LANDSCAPE LENS FOR NIKON D3400
- 2. NIKON AF-S NIKKOR 50MM F/1.8G - BEST PORTRAIT LENS FOR NIKON D3400
- 3. NIKON AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300MM F/4.5-6.3G ED VR - BEST TELEPHOTO LENS FOR NIKON D3400
- 4. NIKON AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20MM F/4.5-5.6G VR - BEST WIDE ANGLE LENS FOR NIKON D3400
- 5. NIKON AF-S DX MICRO-NIKKOR 40MM F/2.8G - BEST MACRO LENS FOR NIKON D3400
- 6. NIKON AF S NIKKOR 85MM F/1.8G
- 7. NIKON AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-105MM F/3.5-5.6G ED - BEST ALL-ROUND LENS FOR BEGINNERS
- 8. SIGMA 17-50MM F/2.8 EX DC OS HSM FLD
- 9. TAMRON 18-400MM F/3.5-6.3 DI-II VC HLD - BEST FOR TRAVEL
- 10. ROKINON 14MM F/2.8 IF ED UMC
- BUYING GUIDE FOR BEST LENS FOR NIKON D3400
- FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS REGARDING BEST LENS FOR NIKON D3400
10 BEST LENS FOR NIKON D3400 REVIEW
1. NIKON AF-S DX NIKKOR 35MM F/1.8G - BEST LANDSCAPE LENS FOR NIKON D3400
FEATURES: Want to take beautiful family portraits indoors with your Nikon D3400 camera? Well, try using this 35mm f/1.8G designed for Nikon's DX (APS-C) cameras. Not only family portraits, but you can also capture almost anything with this lens, be it everyday casual shots, street photographs, wedding snaps and landscapes as well.
DESIGN: Extremely lightweight! It weighs only 200 grams, so you easily carry them around in your pockets. In terms of build quality, not ultimate nor bad; it's pleasing.
The lens mount is made of metal and has weather sealed gasket around it, which feels nice. The focus ring is rubberized, but I found it to be less smooth when compared to Nikon's other DX lenses.
If you're looking for a lens that has a distance marking on it, I'm sorry this lens doesn't give you that. I, too, was a little disappointed with that. However, the fact that the lens's front element doesn't move while focusing made me glad.
The AF motor gives an accurate autofocusing; however, you will hear some slight swishing sound during the process. So, it would better to use an external voice recorder to get rid of this noise while shooting videos.
PERFORMANCE: I love using the lens in low-light, guys; its performance is massive! You can comfortably use the lens even for night photography. Thanks to the f/1.8 maximum aperture!
The 35mm focal length combined with a fast f/1.8 aperture gives me a complete background blur. I usually take pics for my Instagram with this entry-level DSLR and 35mm f/1.8G Nikkor lens. And, every time I post a new pic, my friends ask me what lens I use? Because the subject isolation is outstanding in this lens, making it the first pick for the best lenses for Nikon d3400.
I'll tell at what aperture values, the overall image sharpness and contrast are excellent. Let me start with f/2.8; at this value, the center and corner sharpness are good, but I feel there is a fall in contrast at this aperture setting.
So, I prefer using f/4 to f/11 to get extremely sharp and high-contrast images. If you love to get soft images or videos, stoop down to f/16; it will give you what you need.
Lastly, the lens gives very slight barrel distortion. But I don't find this a big issue because the Nikon d3400 provides an auto distortion control (while taking shots) and a distortion control tool(post-production). Use any of these two camera controls, and you're sorted. Isn't it really a fantastic lens, guys! I'm totally in love with this all-rounder lens!
2. NIKON AF-S NIKKOR 50MM F/1.8G - BEST PORTRAIT LENS FOR NIKON D3400
FEATURES: All nifty-fifty lovers out there, ready to pair your Nikon D3400 with the 50mm f/1.8G AF-S DX? As this is a full-frame lens, you will get a short-telephoto length of 75mm in an APS-C camera like D3400, making it great for portrait photography.
Don't worry that you don't get the same 50mm with D3400; you will love the 75mm because it will give a deeper view of the subject.
DESIGN: When compared to the 35mm f/1.8G, this is even more sturdy. I would say it far exceeds the price range.
Though the lens is primarily made of plastic, it doesn't feel cheap. It is very durable as high-quality plastic is used in its manufacture.
Unlike the previous lens, where the focus rings were a bit tight, the focus ring is very smooth in this lens. It glides easily and allows easy rotation. There is also an AF/MF to switch between auto to manual focus easily. It also permits full-time manual focus override.
Getting to its AF mechanism: Like the 35mm f/1.8 G, the focusing here is also speedy and accurate but slightly noisy.
PERFORMANCE: I call this to be the best lens for Nikon d3400 for taking portraits and landscapes because I really love the shallow depth of field it gives me.
I take this lens with me whenever I go on a trip because it is very travel-friendly. You can comfortably take low-light photographs/images while traveling, as the lens has a fast aperture. This wide-aperture not only allows me to get more light but also allows me to have faster shutter speeds and less ISO.
I couldn't believe the image sharpness of this lens; it's lovely. I'm in awe because while using a full-frame lens on a DX camera lens; you must sacrifice some level of sharpness. But this lens surprised me because I got even better quality images in this small-sensor camera (D3400). I know it's hard to believe, but it's true!
The image quality and contrast are good even at f/2.8. However, for optimum results, try using the lens between f/4 to f/11; you will love its performance.
This is indeed a great lens but one word of caution, guys. Prevent using the lens under direct sunlight as the image contrast will become poor. Other than that, I believe you must have understood how fantastic this lens is! I give this lens a big thumbs-up; what about you?
3. NIKON AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300MM F/4.5-6.3G ED VR - BEST TELEPHOTO LENS FOR NIKON D3400
FEATURES: The 70-300 AF-P DX is an excellent outdoor lens that is very useful for taking bright still photographs handheld. It has got superb vibration reduction technology, so you don't have to worry about any camera shakes while shooting videos. However, if you're looking for a low-light telephoto lens for your Nikon d3400, this probably is not for you, as this lens is not a low-light performer.
DESIGN: The lens is entirely made of plastic but is sturdy and also lightweight. The lens mount is made of plastic, so please make sure you handle the lens with care.
The best part I liked about its construction is that it has a Pulsing motor for AF. If you're used to working with AF-S lenses, you might be aware that they aren't AF isn't very fast and silent. However, this lens has a very fast AF that is also accurate and less noisy.
Moving on, I did not find any switches on the lens, which means you have to use the camera's menu settings for turning on VR and autofocus. If you're used to changing the settings using the camera's menu and back buttons, this wouldn't be a big issue.
PERFORMANCE: Compared to the above lenses, this lens has an added feature that is nothing but a VR feature.
I tested this lens on my D3400 to check if the vibration reduction really does the job. And to my surprise, it does work impressively. You can actually notice the difference in footage smoothness with and without the stabilization turned on. You, too, will get amazed. That is why I consider this to be another best lens for Nikon D3400.
The autofocus also works pretty well while shooting videos. You will not have to face any focus breathing while using this lens on your Nikon camera.
The bokeh effect feels very nice and creamy, thanks to the nine rounded blades included in the design. The lens maintains its sharpness and clarity throughout the zoom added, which I like very much about this lens.
If you love hiking or any travel, this lens would be an excellent companion to your D3400 camera as you can focus on very distant subjects like mountains, waterfalls, or even animals without actually getting close to them.
Overall, a fantastic lens that can be used for capturing portraits, landscapes, and close-ups effectively. I would recommend this lens for those searching for a good telephoto lens for their Nikon D3400.
4. NIKON AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20MM F/4.5-5.6G VR - BEST WIDE ANGLE LENS FOR NIKON D3400
FEATURES: It is every photographer's desire to posses a good wide-angle lens to use in building, interior, street, environment and even group photography.
So, I have this amazing lens from Nikon that will best suit your D3400 camera. The lens comes with an in-built 3.5 stops vibration reduction feature and also achieves very fast and accurate focusing because it is an AF-P lens (Pulsing stepper motor for AF).
DESIGN: It feels very lightweight, weighing only 230 grams. So, it is a fairly compact lens so the best companion for your smaller D3400 camera.
Like the AF-P 70-300mm lens mentioned-above this lens also has no switches on it. So you have to use your DSLR's internal menu to toggle between auto to manual focus. Also, you cannot switch on or switch off the VR feature, but the lens lens ensures it is by default image stabilized.
The build quality is decent for the price. It is entirely made of plastic including the lens mount. The focus and zoom rings are pretty smooth and provide good traction with the fingers.
You can comfortably take handheld videos without worrying about any camera shakes or micro jiggles. Thanks to the VR feature of this lens. Adding to it, this lens is a step high when it comes to delivering the autofocus. You barely here noise during AF because it comes with a stepper motor technology. Definitely you will love take videos while you travel with this lens!
PERFORMANCE: Have you tried using the Sigma 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6 DC HSM lens. I know it's a bit expensive but it gives amazing results.
To your surprise, you can get the same sharpness of the Sigma lens in a small cost by purchasing this Nikon 10-20mm wide-angle lens. Even at the 10mm wide-open aperture the center and corner sharpness are excellent. While at 20mm, you can get best results when used at f/8 - f/11.
I don't think the lenses mentioned above where good under direct sunlight. However, this lens is unique. I have tested this lens with my D3400 and did not have any lens flare when used under direct sun.
When it comes to distortion, yeah the lens give some barrel distortion at 10mm. However as the Nikon d3400 has in-built distortion control modes, I don't consider these distortions a big flaw.
So, I would conclude by saying this Nikon 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6 VR is the best wide-angle lens for your Nikon d3400 because it has a good optical quality, is affordable and has the VR feature which is a must for this Nikon camera because it doesn't have any in-body stabilization.
5. NIKON AF-S DX MICRO-NIKKOR 40MM F/2.8G - BEST MACRO LENS FOR NIKON D3400
FEATURES: Are you a product influencer? Then having a perfect macro lens to take detailed shots of your PR products is a must. That is why I'm introducing this 40mm f/2.8G lens to you. This lens is the best affordable macro lens for Nikon DX's cameras because you can completely blur the background and and achieve full focus on the subject.
DESIGN: The lens is made of plastic but comes with a metal lens mount. There are two switches on the lens barrel; one to toggle between auto and manual focus and another for enabling full-time manual focus.
It also has got a window-type distance scale on the barrel for focusing accurately. And as you know, for taking macro shots, manual focusing is the best. So, the focus ring must remain smooth, right! Well, this lens provides you the same; the focus ring is rubberized but allows easy rotation. Thumbs up!
PERFORMANCE: I've placed this lens in 5th place of the best lens for Nikon d3400 because it is exceptionally sharp even when wide-open at f/2.8. I could have put this in the top three if it had an image stabilization factor as well.
However, this shouldn't stop you from buying this lens because you can anyways get rid of camera shakes when using a tripod or monopod.
This 40mm f/2.8G is my go-to lens if I have to take high-quality close-up shots of my camera gears and stuff. I just love the accurate focusing this lens gives me.
You don't have to correct the images using any image editing software because this lens is entirely free of chromatic aberrations and distortions.
The only drawback I feel with this lens is you cannot use for insect photography because for taking close-up shots of extremely tiny objects you need to have a macro lens with a longer focal length such as the Nikon 105mm f/2.8G ED.
6. NIKON AF S NIKKOR 85MM F/1.8G
This medium-telephoto prime lens shows a 127.5mm focal length when used with a DX camera like D3400. The focal range and the wide aperture are very useful for taking perfect headshot portraits of around 2-3 people in a single frame.
The qualities I like the most about this lens are: First, it is very sharp at every f-stop. Secondly, the bokeh quality is impressive. You get perfect background isolation with this lens.
Thirdly, it can be used in very low-light conditions as the f/1.8 allows maximum light to enter the lens, making your dim shots brighter.
When it comes to its build quality, the lens is made of good quality plastic and is durable. The gasket is weather sealed which is a bonus.
Overall, the AF-S 85mm f/1.8G is the best lens if you wish to get flattering portraits with your D3400 DSLR camera.
7. NIKON AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-105MM F/3.5-5.6G ED - BEST ALL-ROUND LENS FOR BEGINNERS
Are you a beginner photographer looking for a general-purpose zoom lens for your Nikon D3400 DSLR? Then, what about considering this 18-105mm superzoom lens with VR and autofocus.
The wide focal range of this lens allows you to capture various subjects, be it portrait, macro, and even for landscapes if you're using the wide-end 18mm.
The build quality of this lens is decent; it is entirely made of plastic and comes with a plastic lens mount. The focus and zoom rings are smooth and also grippy.
In terms of image quality, I would like to start by giving a word of caution. Please use the lens hood while shooting under direct sunlight; otherwise, the lens will begin to flare, which we do not want.
You get a controlled vignette throughout the zoom range. But don't worry, it only gives a realistic feel to the images.
Lastly, the focusing is pretty good; the sharpness is maintained throughout the zoom range. However, this lens is not for professionals as the image quality is not pro level. But for beginners, this is an excellent entry-level zoom lens that will help you explore more about photography and videography.
If you're a professional photographer, try considering the AF-S DX Nkr 18-200mm F/3.5-5.6G ED VR II.
8. SIGMA 17-50MM F/2.8 EX DC OS HSM FLD
The Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 EX DC OS HSM is a large-aperture fast standard zoom lens ideal for portraiture and landscape photography.
If you compare this lens to the 18-55mm kit lens, you get twice the light when used at f/2.8. You can zoom in close to the subject and still receive bright images in low-lighting conditions. Outstanding low-light performer indeed!
Moving on to the out-of-focus blur effects; Guys, it is mind-blowing! You get a perfect focus on the subject and really get a blurry background. Thanks to f/2.8 maximum aperture again!
In terms of its build quality, it is pretty sturdy. I wouldn't say the focus and zoom rings are the smoothest ever. Instead, I would say it is much smoother than the 18-55mm kit lens you get with the Nikon d3400 camera.
Overall, a very sharp zoom lens also ensures optical stabilization while you shoot still photographs and videos. At 50mm, end-to-end sharpness is maintained at every f-stop. However, at 17mm wide-open, the center sharpness but the corners are a bit soft. Give this lens a try if you liked its features and design.
9. TAMRON 18-400MM F/3.5-6.3 DI-II VC HLD - BEST FOR TRAVEL
Are you a safari lover? Then, this lens is apt for you. Be ready to take wonderful wildlife shots, nature photographs and even sports videos with this amazing 18-400mm Tamron lens.
Does your videos shoots require changing the shots often? Then it is a must that the zoom and manual focus rings remain sturdy as well as turn smoothly. And be glad that this lens offers you the same.
The weather sealed gasket and the Vibration compensation feature also prove that the lens is for the price. But, I would like to give a piece of advice to you, the focus system is a bit old-fashioned in this lens. I'll tell you why. You might actually lock the manual focus ring if you try to turn it when the AF switch is turned on. So, be little careful while handling this lens.
In terms of image quality, it is decently sharp with excellent center sharpness throughout it's zoom range. Yes, the corners loose a bit of contrast at the wide-end, but as you zoom in to the larger focal lengths, the image contrast and sharpness improves.
10. ROKINON 14MM F/2.8 IF ED UMC
Want to portray more of the scene into the frame? Then this lens will help with that. This Rokinon/Samyang 14mm f/2.8 will give you an equivalent focal length of 21mm when used with an APS-C sensor camera like Nikon d3400.
In terms of image quality, the sharpness is only decent; it is not excellent. However, aberrations, distortions are very minimal in this lens.
Overall, those looking for a fully manual focus lens for their Nikon D3400 can try using this lens!
BUYING GUIDE FOR BEST LENS FOR NIKON D3400
Nikon D3400 doesn't get along with a few types of lenses. This buying guide will tell you what they are and provide some features you need to consider while purchasing a lens. So, please read them carefully, and make a wise decision.
1. lens compatibility
I had mentioned in the introduction that D3400 is a DX camera but allows using interchangeable lenses. Yes, that's true; however, Nikon's AF-D and older AF lenses cannot be used with a Nikon D3400 because the camera has no built-in autofocus motor. So, while you select the lens, make sure it has a built-in AF motor in it. This includes Nikon's latest generation AF-S, AF-I, and AF-P type lenses.
Also, remember you can't enjoy Nikon's full exposure metering if you're planning to use a manual focus lens along with it.
2. IMAGE STABILIZATION/VIBRATION REDUCTION
I want to bring to your notice that the Nikon D3400 camera has no sort of in-body stabilization. So, it is better to go for a lens that has a VR/VC/IS feature in it. This feature, if present, will avoid the effects of camera shakes or motion blur while taking still photographs videos with a handheld camera.
Adding to it, image stabilization will allow you to capture shots at slower shutter speeds, thereby giving you sharper images.
3. photography and videography style
Be very clear about what type of photography/videography you're interested in, and then step ahead to buy a lens. In this article I have tried to cover all the kinds of lenses depending on your needs, like wide-angle, ultra-wide angle, macro lens, telephoto zoom lens, standard zoom lens etc. Different lenses are suitable for different conditions.
For example, if you are going to be shooting portraits, then an ultra-wide-angle lens will be a terrible choice. Of course, you will be able to shoot portraits with it, but the results will not be up to the mark. Because ultra-wide angle lenses are ideal for landscape photography, not portraiture. So choose according to your requirements.
If you wish to get a deeper understanding of the focal length range of each type of lens, I request you to read my article on types of lenses out in the market, where I have mentioned everything in detail regarding this topic.
Aperture is nothing but the lens's opening that will allow light to enter the lens. So, the wider the aperture more the light enters the lens. If you're interested in taking shots/videos in low-light, then a wide-aperture lens of less than f/2.8 is a must-have. Also, for getting a good bokeh (out-of-focus blur effects), a fast lens is needed. By fast lens, I mean a wide-aperture(small f-number) lens of less than f/2.
If you wish to achieve end-to-end sharpness and want the entire frame to be in perfect focus, a lens with a larger f-number is needed.
The best part of using a Nikon D3400 camera is that it will help get rid of the image distortion caused by a lens. I am glad you asked me how. I'll tell you. You could either use the Auto distortion control mode on the camera while taking pictures. Or use the distortion control option on the camera's retouch menu to correct the distorted parts of the image post-production.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS REGARDING BEST LENS FOR NIKON D3400
1. What is the best all-purpose lens for Nikon D3400?
In my opinion, the NIKON AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-105MM F/3.5-5.6G ED is the best all-purpose lens for beginners. In case of professionals, the AF-S DX Nkr 18-200mm F/3.5-5.6G ED VR II is the best.
2. When was Nikon D3400 launched?
This 24.2MP Nikon-F mount camera made it's official entry in the market on August 17, 2016. It is still one of the best entry-level DSLRs in the market because it has a crop-sensor format, is affordable and allows using interchangeable lenses.
3. Does a Nikon D3400 have a built-in WiFi?
No, the Nikon D3400 doesn't have an in-built WiFi it technology. Instead it is equipped with a built-in Bluetooth feature that allows compatibility with almost all smart devices through the SnapBridge application.
These are ten of the best lenses that you can safely use with the Nikon D3400 to get outstanding results. If you wish to obtain any information regarding any of the lenses or cameras, please let me know in the comment section below.
Also, share your opinion of whether you found this article helpful and informative. I hope to see you in my next article, Happy clicking!