Nikon launched its full-frame mirrorless camera system in 2018, and with the arrival of the Nikon Z6 and Nikon Z7 came a new lens system using the new Nikon Z mount. This mount was not directly compatible with the Nikon F mount, which had been used in different variations on Nikon's SLRs and DSLRs since 1959, meaning that Nikon had to design a whole new line of lenses.
However, with the most recent lens roadmap, unveiled on 14 December 2021, just before the professional flagship Nikon Z9 goes on sale, Nikon is now promising that it will have no fewer than 34 Z-mount Nikon lenses by 2023.
Since the Z-mount was first launched, Nikon have continued to introduce exciting pieces of glass. The arrival of the Nikon Z50 meant that Nikon then added a line of DX Z-mount lenses for APS-C lovers – which will also be ideal for the more recent retro-look Nikon Z fc.
• Read more: Nikon Z50 vs D7500
The good news for Nikon fans, as they wait for all these optics to be released, is that they can use all current Nikon DSLR lenses on the new cameras – and they can do so without focus or exposure restrictions, using the specially designed Nikon FTZ and FTZ II adaptors often sold with the Nikon Z6 and Z7 cameras.
The new Nikon Z mount has a diameter of 55mm, making it 17% bigger than the F-mount, and with that comes the promise of faster lenses than we have seen before – for example, the super-fast Nikkor Z 58mm f/0.95 S Noct. The flange distance (the distance between the back of the lens and the sensor) is now just 16mm, as there is no mirror to build into the light path.
Building a whole new lens system entirely from scratch takes time, so new zooms and primes using the Z mount have been gradually introduced by Nikon. The company is keen to get users on board with the new system, so it has published an official Nikon Z lens roadmap (above) that gives a view of what lenses it will be introducing and when.
The latest roadmap stretches through until 2021 and contains 19 different current lenses, with a further 9 in development. The manufacturer managed to get 10 lenses on the market in time for the start of 2020, making its Z system bodies a viable platform for photographers looking for the best mirrorless camera.
Here is a rundown of the already-available lenses on the Nikon Z lens roadmap, as well as those that are on the horizon – and we'll keep this page updated as Nikon announces new optics…
Current Nikon Z prime lenses
The 24mm f/1.8 was the most recent Z-mount prime lens launched by Nikon, and its fourth f/1.8 prime. It's notable that the competing Canon RF lens roadmap doesn't feature any first-party primes this wide, as Canon's widest prime lens is 35mm.
Nikkor Z 28mm f/2.8
The original version of this lens had a silver finish to match the retro-designed Nikon Z fc. This version is designed to match the color of full-frame Z series cameras, providing an affordable and portable wide-angle prime.
This was the first prime to be launched for the Z system of lenses, offering the classic 35mm focal length typically favored by street photographers, documentary photographers and photojournalists.
A small, but affordable prime that offers a portable standard lens not only for full-frame Z shooters, but also eminently suitable for the DX-sensored Z50 and Z fc (where it offers an effective focal length of 60mm).
Nikon's 50mm options for Z mount cameras have up to now been a selection of one: the Nikkor Z 50mm f/1.8 S (below). Now Nikon has introduced this ultra-fast f/1.2 option which is markedly bigger and heavier than its f/1.8 sibling, but promises supreme image quality from its complex optical path and premium element coatings.
This classic standard lens prime is reminiscent of the lenses that many people got as their kit lens when they bought an SLR back in the Sixties and Seventies. Again it's notable that Canon doesn't offer a cheap "nifty fifty" for the RF mount, only a premium f/1.2 version that costs thousands of dollars.
Probably the most anticipated lens on the Nikon Z lens roadmap, this monster prime lens has a phenomenal f/0.95 maximum aperture and was designed to showcase what the Z mount is capable of. This lens weighs 2kg and costs a whopping $8,000!
This short telephoto has the ideal wide aperture and focal length for people shots. Its classic 85mm length makes it a key lens in the arsenal of portrait, social and wedding photographers.
This is the fifth f/1.8 prime in the Z-mount range, though it's perhaps puzzlingly close to the existing 24mm lens. Get a wide angle view on stunning vistas with this perfect landscape photography lens.
Current Nikon Z zoom lenses
Nikon Nikkor Z 14-24mm f/2.8 S
The Z 14-24mm f/2.8 S completes Nikon's trinity of pro Z mount zoom optics. Its constant f/2.8 aperture perfectly complements the Z 24-70mm f/2.8 S and Z 70-200mm f/2.8 S (both below), giving pros a complete selection of uncompromising S-line fast zooms with a focal range running from 24mm right through to 200mm.
The 14-30mm is a super-wide-angle zoom that's ideal for landscape, architectural and indoor photography. And, uncharacteristically for a lens of this type, it can be used with a front-mounted filter, making it even more versatile.
The first professional zoom for the Z system is the highly anticipated 24-70mm f/2.8. This is one of the 'holy trinity' of f/2.8 constant aperture lenses that many need to have in their kit bag (the others being a 14-24mm and 70-200mm).
The first zoom lens released for the Nikon Z cameras, this is also the one most commonly sold in kits if you buy a Z6 or Z7 body. It's much slower than its f/2.8 sibling, but its compact size and optical performance make it a great alternative.
This zoom lens, announced alongside the Nikon Z5, is the smallest and lightest full frame mirrorless zoom lens yet – and it comes with an affordable price tag of $399 to match. The Nikon Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 is available in kits with the new Nikon Z5, and is now avaialable on its own $399.95 / £439 / AU$799.95.
This is the first superzoom lens for the Nikon Z system – allowing you to tackle most subjects with just the one lens, making it ideal for traveling. It is a full-frame lens for use with the Z5, Z6 and Z7, but also features VR image stabilization making it a great partner for the Z50 too (where it will have an effective focal length of 36-300mm).
Originally promised for 2019, then promised for February 2020, the Nikkor Z 70-200mm f/2.8 S is now finally on sale and is a must-have lens for any pro. This fast-aperture telephoto is a workhorse for weddings, news, and sports – and now it is available it will encourage more pros to switch to the Z6 and Z7. In our lab tests, it performed extraordinarily well, setting a new benchmark for lenses in this class.
The first 1:1 macro lens in the Nikon Z range is now on sale. This focal length will make this a popular choice with portrait photographers, as well as those taking ultra close-up images of insects and such.
A compact macro lens which can be used on full-frame cameras - and particularly useful for repro photography, or those wanting something lighter to carry around than the 105mm Macro. But the 50mm Macro's biggest appeal will be to those using the Z50 and Z fc cameras - where the effective focal length becomes 75mm.
Current Nikon Z DX lenses
With the arrival of the Nikon Z50, and the newer Nikon Z fc, which employ a smaller APS-C sensor, Nikon has deployed a line of DX lenses for its Z-mount system. This marks a pronounced departure from Canon's RF mount strategy, which is exclusively full frame. However, it enables Nikon to produce smaller and lighter cameras with suitably compact lenses that take advantage of the Z mount's benefits.
Obviously this kit lens is designed specifically for the Z50, but it's fair to say that it absolutely makes Nikon's compact new camera. Its collapsible pancake design fits an equivalent 24-75mm focal range literally in the palm of your hand.
Nikkor Z DX 18-140mm f/3.5-6.3 VR
This superzoom gives you an all-in-one lens that is ideal for travel, or simply for those who don't want a bag full of lenses. The image-stabilized zoom offers an effective focal length range of 28-210mm, allowing you every angle of view from wide-angle to telephoto.
Likewise designed for the Nikon Z50's DX sensor, this discreet telephoto zoom lens gives an equivalent full-frame focal length of 75-375mm, and is often sold as part of a twin lens kit with the Z50.
Nikkor Z 28mm f/2.8 SE
Technically this is actually an FX full-frame lens, however thanks to its classic-styling it was launched to being a perfect match for use with the retro-designed Nikon Z fc.
Nikon Z lenses coming in 2021
Other lenses on the Nikon Z lens roadmap that the manufacturer has confirmed for release by 2021 (with full specifications given at the launch of the Nikon Z9) are as follows:
Nikkor Z 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 VR S
Nikkor Z 24-120mm f/4 S
Other lenses promised by the latest road map are:
200-600mm full-frame supertelephoto zoom
400mm f/2.8 TC VR S supertelephoto with built-in teleconverter
400mm f/2.8 S supertelephoto
600mm S supertelephoto
800mm f/6.3 VR S supertelephoto
85mm S portrait prime
24mm DX prime lens for the Z50 and Z fc
12-28mm DX zoom for the Z50 and Z fc
Nikon Z 28-75mm f/2.8 - fast but affordable standard zoom
Third party Z mount lenses
A number of major and minor third-party manufacturers have announced lenses for the Nikon Z mount. Here is a selection of some of the non-Nikon lenses that are on the market …
Samyang MF 14mm F2.8 Z
The widest prime lens currently available for the Nikon Z mount comes courtesy of Samyang, with this manual focus 14mm optic.
The Laowa 15mm f/2 Zero-D is a fantastic optic, offering an ultra wide-angle lens with a fast f/2 aperture and an affordable price – making it a bit of a unicorn lens for architectural and landscape photographers. And for videographers, the ability to de-click the aperture by sliding a switch makes this an essential lens for shooting wide. It's all-manual, but the image quality and distortion control are both impressive.
Unless you want to spend eight grand on the Noct, this is currently the fastest prime lens you can buy for the Nikon Z6 or Z7. Its manual focus might put some people off, but a classic portrait lens with an f/1.4 aperture is music to the ears of those who enjoy shooting portraiture.