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Best Lenses for the Nikon D5500/D5600 DSLR Cameras

I am frequently asked what are the best lenses for the Nikon D5500/D5600 DSLR cameras. Here you will find a list of my favorite lenses for that camera. The reasons for purchasing specific lenses is very much like the reasons for selecting specific tools – make sure you select the right lens for the job. I have seen many photographers purchase lenses because they were highly recommended or tested “the best” only to become frustrated because the lens does not fit their photographic style.

nikon35mmf18Nikon AF-S DX 35mm f/1.8 ($200)

The Nikon AF-S DX 35mm f/1.8 is a standard fast prime lens that provides roughly the same perspective as our eyes. It is not considered a wide angle lens nor a telephoto lens. Thanks to the f/1.8 aperture this lens is able to capture images in lower light. This allows the photographer to use faster shutter speeds to freeze motion, or lower ISO’s for better image quality. Image quality from this lens is excellent and in my opinion should be in every Nikon APS-C camera owners kit.  Purchase from amazon.com

nikon50mmf18Nikon AF-S DX 50mm f/1.8 ($250)

The Nikon AF-S DX 50mm f/1.8G is similar to the Nikon AF-S DX 35mm f/1.8 in that both lenses feature that great f/1.8 maximum aperture, but since it is 50mm it provides a slightly more telephoto view. This “compresses” your scene giving a different perspective that what you see with the naked eye. This compression makes backgrounds appear closer to your subject. This is generally considered the best starter portrait lens for this reason. Purchase from amazon.com

tamron70-300-000Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 VC USD

For those photographers looking for a telephoto zoom lens to bring the action closer, look no further than the Tamron 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 VC USD. This lens is great for getting sports in daylight, wildlife and anything else that is farther away. This gives you 50% more zoom than the 55-200mm lens that is typically sold in the 2-lens package with the cameras. It is also a full frame lens so if you ever upgrade your camera to full frame you can still use this lens. Purchase from amazon.com

tamron10-24mmTamron 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5 ($500)

The Tamron 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5 is a great value in an ultrawide zoom lens. This lens is generally considered a “landscape” lens since most people associate the need for ultra wide angle lenses to capture vast scenics, or a lens for interior architecture work, but thanks to the expansion effect from ultrawide lenses this is a lens that can also be used to distort the near-far relationship giving your photos more depth. Purchase from amazon.com

nikon40mmNikon AF-S 40mm f/2.8 Micro

When Nikon announced the Nikon AF-S 40mm f/2.8 Micro lens I was very intrigued, mostly due to the price. Typically macro lenses are expensive (starting over $500). This lens gives you true 1:1 reproduction for under $300. It is great for things like stamps, coins, flowers and non-living subjects. For living subjects I usually recommend longer focal length (85mm and up) macro lenses since they provide more working distance for your subjects. Purchase from amazon.com

There are many other lenses that I also recommend for the Nikon D5500/D5600 cameras, but these are my favorites. These are mostly selected for their price and performance with the most expensive lens around $500. You may not need each of the lenses on this list, but if you want to expand your photography, the lenses on this list are a great place to start without breaking the bank.

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