Best lenses for Nikon D610: Wide angle and telephoto primes and zoom models

By Kevin Carter - Friday November 22 2013

Lens Recommendations
Introduction | Best telephoto prime lenses for the Nikon D610 | Best telephoto zoom lenses for the Nikon D610 | Best wide-angle lenses for the Nikon D610 | Best Ultra-wide prime lenses for the Nikon D610 | Best ultra-wide zoom lenses for the Nikon D610

Included in our rankings this time are two versions of Sigma’s stabilized 120-300mm f2.8 DG OS HSM S series lens, the recently updated model and the previous iteration. With over half the range of a 70-200mm f2.8, and at around 60% of the price of the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 300mm f2.8 the Sigma is a tempting option.

Although the new model has the same optical construction as its predecessor, some improvements in image quality were measured though peak sharpness hasn’t improved.  

Sigma 120-300mm F2.8 DG OS HSM S Nikon35992919
Sigma APO 120-300mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM Nikon24492619
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II69992417
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR27002115
Nikon AF Zoom-Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6D ED1962011
Nikon AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G IF-ED6692012
Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO-M DG Macro Nikon2091912
Tamron SP 70-300 F/4-5.6 Di VC USD Nikon4491910
Sigma 50-500mm F4.5-6.3 APO DG OS HSM Nikon16591913
Sigma 120-400mm F4.5-5.6 DG APO OS HSM Nikon9991912
Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 DG OS Nikon3591911
Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO Macro Super II Nikon1991912
Nikon AF VR Zoom-Nikkor 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6D ED16651810
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR10501710
Tamron AF 28-300mm F/3.5-6.3 XR Di VC LD Aspherical [IF] Macro Nikon 600169

Nikon’s AF-S Nikkor 200-400mm f4G ED VR II has also been analyzed and while the Sigma has higher peak sharpness, it doesn’t have the corner sharpness of the Nikkor at f4-5.6 over the 200-300mm range. The Nikon is also an excellent performer at 400mm but it’s still not in the same league in sharpness as the firm’s AF-S Nikkor 400mm f2.8G ED VR.

Smaller and lighter than the Sigma and Nikon 200-400mm, the new AF-S 80-400mm f4.5-5.6G ED VR is another model with good optical quality and although it’s sharper at the shorter end it still has good center sharpness and negligible chromatic aberration where it’s likely to be used most, wide-open at 400mm. At $2,700 it’s not inexpensive but it’s more accessibly priced than the faster, more specialised models.

Sigma 120-300mm F2.8 DG OS HSM S Nikon vs AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR vs AF-S NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II: