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Nikon D850 Fast Start

Lesson 10 of 19

Lens Options


Nikon D850 Fast Start

Lesson 10 of 19

Lens Options


Lesson Info

Lens Options

All right, let's talk a little bit about some of the lens options that are available for the D850. Nikon has two main lineups of lenses, their FX lenses and their DX lenses. It's only slightly complicated because the FX lenses are not labeled as FX, but the DX lenses are clearly labeled as DX lenses. The FX lenses are designed for full frame sensors, which means that they have a coverage area big enough for the entire image area on a full frame sensor. It's a perfect match in that regard. The DX sensors are designed to have a smaller image circle that meets up perfectly with the smaller sized sensors in the DX cameras, like the Nikon D7500 or 5600, as those many, many other Nikons with that regard. If you wanna take a DX lens and mount it onto your D850 here, well you can do it and you can shoot photos. The problem is that it does not spread that image out over the entire image frame. You're gonna get a darkening of the corners. One of the options that you'll able to turn on, on this c...

amera, is the auto DX crop, which will automatically crop the frame in when it knows there's a DX lens on there. Chances are, that's what most of you would wanna do if you put a DX lens on this camera, although I don't recommend it, because you're gonna be throwing away a lot of potential resolution. It's gonna reduce that 46 megapixels about in half when you get down to just the DX area. You can take the lenses for your 850, that are FX lenses, and you can use them on those smaller sensor cameras, if you want. They do create a very large image circle, but there's no problems with that, no determent. You're just photographing and capturing an area in the middle of the frame. The FX lenses, as I say, they're not labeled as FX, but if they don't have a DX, then they're probably an FX. The DX lenses are are very clearly labeled with the DX. Just to be perfectly clear, there is another grouping of lenses, for the Nikon Mirrorless system, that are notably smaller in size, and they are designed for a completely different camera system that has no adaptability onto any of the SLRs. If you're at a garage sale, or picking up something used online, make sure it's not one of the Nikon-1 system lenses. On your lenses, Nikon has a number of different features of the lens that they like to promote and talk about, and categories that they wanna help you categorize which lens grouping it is in. You'll see this with the various letters on the camera. We'll talk a little bit more about this as we get into the recommended lenses. When you look at your lenses, you got your CPU contacts there on the back. Your lens mounting mark, to get it lined up. Zoom lenses will have a big zoom, usually pretty close to the body, but sometimes the focus and lens can be moved around, depending on what they think is right for that particular lens. You'll see your distance scale, not on all lenses, but lenses that do have it, it can be helpful to know where the camera is focusing and to see it focusing. Pretty much all the lenses are gonna have a nice big focusing ring. Each lens either comes supplied or has available, a dedicated lens hood, that's gonna block extraneous light, that's gonna give you the best image quality and contrast in any given lighting situation. I recommend using those lens hoods on a regular basis. Most all of the lenses have a standardized thread mount system. This particular lens is 82. Other lenses will be different in size, so if you wanna get any sort of filters, it will say right on the front what the thread size of your particular lens is. Over on the side of the lens will be a focusing switch. There are two different common switches that you'll find on many of the Nikon lenses. The first is an M and A switch, where it's pretty easy. It's in either auto focus, or manual focus. You can choose wherever you want it. The ones that have the M/A M option, the M/A stands for automatic focus with a manual override. If your camera's in auto focus, and you would like to manually override it, you know, for a short period of time, after the camera is focused. You press halfway down to focus. You decide that's not quite right where you wanna focus. You can readjust focus just by grabbing the focus ring and turning with your finger halfway down on the shutter release. It's a special clutch that they built into the lenses. Not all lenses have it. It's kinda considered a mark of a higher end lens. Let's look at some of the recommended lenses for this type of camera. Your standard zoom, the 24 to 70, 2. or the newer version with the vibration reduction are some of the more popular options with this camera. Keeping that fast aperture of 2.8, they do make the 14 to 24, which is at this point, a legendary lens. The 70 to 200, which is also one of the most popular work horses lens out there. It's gonna be a very popular lens choice. As I said before, there's lots of lens codes that Nikon likes to use. Here is a key to some to the more common features and attributes of Nikon lenses. I'm not gonna go through all of these, but one of the more important ones to look at is the electronic aperture, the G. You'll see this right after the aperture setting. That's where they have a lot of their current lenses. On some of them, they're adding an E now, which is for their latest Electromatic, electromagnetic diaphragm opening. You wanna be very aware of the different options for different lenses and different lens eras. Some other options that I think are really good are the series of lenses that are in F4 and maximum aperture. These tend to be a little bit less money. They tend to be a little bit smaller and lighter weight than the 2.8 lenses. They are good for general purpose, for travel photography, for landscape photography. If you are doing a lot of people photography, and movement and shutter speed being more important in that case, the 2.8 lenses are my preferred options, but for general work, the F4, I think is gonna make life a little bit easier, 'cause it's a little bit less weight to carry around. Nikon of course has plenty of primes or fixed or non-zooming lenses that are absolutely beautiful. These are some of the best lenses out there. That new 105, 1.4E is an amazing lens for shooting portraits with, but all of these are really good lenses. There are some other ones that they brought out. They recently brought out a 28 that's really nice. These are some really nice premium lenses that you can get that are really the best that money can buy. Next up are some sweet primes, I like to call them. These are not their top of the line lenses, but these are still really good lenses that I think of as really good values. All of these are less than $1000. Some of them are less than $500. They've been coming out with a number of these 1.8 aperture, maximum aperture lenses, that are really quite nice. If you do want a lens to fill a particular need, but you don't need to go over the top in size, weight and money, these are some really nice options. There's a few more beyond these, but I think these are some of the best ones out there. This being a 46 megapixel camera, you do need to use good lenses on it. One of the things you'll notice about the Nikon lenses is that all the better lenses have this gold ring around the front of it, and so these gold ring lenses are typically the newest versions of the lenses. You can use really old lenses with this camera, which is great, but some of those lenses were not designed with a 46 megapixel sensor in mind when they designed them. Some of them, you may not be getting all 46 megapixels of image quality out of it, but if you do wanna get the highest image quality you're gonna need to look for their higher end, more current current lenses. If you are interested in learning more about Nikon lenses, I have an entire two day class on the complete guide to Nikon lenses. I'll talk about all the different photos, or all the different lenses in there. I'll talk about all the technology that's being used. I'll talk about how to choose a lens and how to use a lens and examples with a variety of different lenses in there. If you wanna know more about lenses, check out the Nikon lens class.

Class Description


  • Capture images expertly with the Nikon D850
  • Set up a custom menu on the Nikon D850
  • Find the best lenses to pair with the Nikon D850
  • Uncover hidden features on the Nikon D850
  • Shoot movies with the Nikon D850
  • Edit in-camera and share with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth using Snapbridge
  • Use shortcuts to format the SD card instead of digging in the menu


Great design is invisible.

The Nikon D850 ($3,300 body-only) is one of the best full-frame cameras on the market, mixing a high-resolution sensor with a speedy burst mode. But the D850 is so feature-packed, you may not know even half the features right out of the box. From the new multi-selector tool to setting up the Wi-Fi, the D850 has a steeper learning curve than entry-level cameras. Sure, you could spend days going through the entire 360+ page manual -- or you could spend a few hours with some hands-on experience lead by a professional photographer.

In this class, you'll learn how to control the Nikon D850, from the physical controls to the settings inside the menu. While watching the class, you'll be able to create your own custom menu and get the camera set to your shooting style. You'll learn valuable time-saving shortcuts and uncover features you didn't realize the camera had.

John's straightforward teaching style is easy to follow along with and fun to watch. Ditch the manual drawings and learn from live demonstrations, including questions from students like you.


  • Photographers new to the Nikon D850
  • Self-taught photographers that haven't yet uncovered all the D850 has to offer
  • Photographers on the fence about whether to buy the D850 or another camera

MATERIALS USED: Nikon D850, Nikkor Lenses, SD Card


John Greengo has spent the better part of three decades building a photography career -- and using all different kinds of digital cameras. His experience has lead him to teach others how to best maximize the camera they have. John has taught classes on Nikon DSLRs like the Nikon D810, Nikon D7200, Nikon D7500, Nikon D3500, Nikon D5600, Nikon D500, Nikon D750, and several others. His CreativeLive class list also includes classes on DSLRs and mirrorless cameras from Olympus, Sony, Canon, Panasonic, and Fujifilm.

Along with teaching, John works as a travel and landscape photographer, a passion that has won him several awards. His work allows him to shoot around the globe at several "bucket list" locations, including Iceland, South America, and Alaska.


  1. Class Introduction

    Meet the instructor and get a glimpse at what's up next with this short introduction to this Nikon camera class, along with picking up a few basic photography tips.

  2. Basic Camera Controls

    Jump into the dials and buttons on the Nikon D850 with this initial introduction to the basic camera controls. Learn the general overview of the camera's control scheme, including the new multi-selector.

  3. Top of Camera

    Continue exploring the camera's different controls with an in-depth look at the top of the camera, from using the shutter release to using back-button AF. Learn how to adjust essential exposure settings like ISO, aperture, and shutter speed.

  4. Back of Camera

    At the back of the Nikon D850 DSLR camera, find the custom setting menu, bracketing options, and white balance. Learn continuous shooting modes. Figure out how to use that new multi-selector tool in this lesson.

  5. Live View Menu

    The LCD screen at the back of the camera body can be used as live view mode or in movie mode, depending on what you want to shoot. Learn the difference between these two modes and how to adjust the different viewing options.

  6. Movie Mode Menu

    Switching gears to the movie mode on the LCD, walk through the different controls for shooting video on the full-frame Nikon D850. Learn different shortcuts, as well as tips like silently adjusting the aperture while recording video.

  7. Left & Right Sides of Camera

    Moving around to the sides of the camera, find essential settings like bracketing and AF modes. Dive into autofocusing essentials, then learn the camera's different port options.

  8. Bottom of Camera

    Take a quick look at the bottom of the camera, where you'll find the serial number, the tripod socket, and the battery access. Learn how to look at your camera's battery life, and why you may not want to use older batteries on the camera.

  9. Front of Camera

    At the front of the Nikon D850 rests a customizable function button, as well as the depth of field preview. Uncover the hidden flash sync and ten-pin ports at the front of the camera.

  10. Lens Options

    Dive into Nikon's excellent Nikkor lens options, including recommendations specific to the D850 camera body. Learn how to recognize a compatible full-frame lens compared to a DX-format lens that will crop your photos to the APS-C format. Recognize Nikon's shorthand for lens features, like the VR (vibration reduction) to designate a VR lens.

  11. Playback Menu

    Move from the camera controls to the menu system inside the D850. Get an overview of the entire menu and menu navigation, then dig into the options for the playback menu.

  12. Photo Shooting Menu

    Inside the photo shooting menu, learn how to save settings, how to save your images to the SD card and XQD card, how to shoot RAW and more. Decipher the different shooting options and set the D850 up to your shooting style.

  13. Movie Menu

    Uncover the movie options inside the sub-menu catering specifically to video. Change your aspect ratio, shoot at 4K, shoot slo-mo, or adjust the video file format in this menu.

  14. Custom Setting Menu Part 1

    Customize your D850 to your own shooting style using the custom shooting menu. Learn how to create a custom shooting menu and how to add easier access to the most frequently-adjusted settings.

  15. Custom Setting Menu Part 2

    Continuing the look at the custom setting menu, learn how to re-program the Nikon D850's physical controls. Create a custom scheme on the D850 based on how you shoot.

  16. Setup Menu

    Inside the setup menu, learn how to format your cards as well as one-and-done essentials like timezone and language. Allow the camera's clock to sync to a smartphone using Bluetooth to avoid resetting the clock for travel or Daylight Savings.

  17. Retouch Menu

    Edit your photos before they leave the camera with the retouch menu. Learn how to convert a RAW file to an edited JPEG without a computer.

  18. My Menu

    Create menu shortcut options with the My Menu tool, which allows you to see specific menu options immediately, the first time you open the menu option. This is a great way to save the most frequently-accessed settings, like image quality and Bluetooth.

  19. Camera Operation

    Gain some final tips on using the Nikon D850 while out shooting, including a shooting checklist. Learn how to check the camera for dust on the sensor. Set the D850 up for several different types of shots.


a Creativelive Student

Excellent class. Very fast paced which I loved. I have had my D850 for a few months and thought I had it all figured out. I learned some awesome tips and tricks that I am eager to start using. Thanks John:-)

Francis Sullivan

82 yrs old. Been an avid photographers since 5 yrs old. Read and listened to all types of photo teachers. Greengo is the best of all. Every so called photographer can still learn from a master on the D850. Fantastic camera and fantastic teacher.

Alger Libby

I am only three lessons in, but already I know that this is exactly what I'm looking for, and exactly what I need. The content of the lectures AND the visuals are top-notch and deliver precisely what the course says it is: FAST START. I am a graduate of our local college's digital photography program, which I studied with an entry-level Canon. Moving to the top-of-the-line Nikon was a giant leap for me, and one I could not do without this help. Sure, there are many, many, many more things to learn, but to put this camera in my hands and help me to understand its fundamental operations is a great gift, and I am grateful. Well done!