Can You Use a Nikon DX Lens on an FX Camera

It’s possible to use Nikon’s DX lenses with their FX line of cameras, as the two are interchangeable. However, you’ll have to deal with some inherent problems that can get in the way of capturing the best-quality photos.

I’m Caleb, and I have five years of photography experience. My primary specialty is sports photography, and I’ve shot several sports and leagues from the college to the semi-pro level.

In this article, I’ll break down using Nikon DX lenses with FX cameras and whether it’s something you should bother with at all. If you’re thinking of buying an FX camera and wondering about carrying over your DX lenses, keep reading for a full explanation.

Can You Use a Nikon DX Lens on an FX Camera?

Yes, you can use a DX lens with an FX camera body since they’re designed to be interchangeable with each other. But there are still some complications you should consider before making a decision.

The main problem lies in the sensor size of the camera. Nikon’s FX cameras are full-frame, with larger sensors than their DX counterparts. The DX lenses were designed with smaller sensors in mind, so while they are compatible with FX bodies, they aren’t a perfect match.

Because the lens doesn’t cover the sensor in its entirety, the picture’s edges will come out dark. This is called vignetting, and normally, your camera will automatically crop out the edges while using a DX lens, specifically to prevent this effect.

But cropping isn’t a perfect solution, either. It makes your photos appear more zoomed in and effectively turns your full-frame camera into an APS-C one.

The Pros and Cons

The upside of DX lenses is cost. They’re cheaper than FX lenses, sometimes by a significant margin. Also, if you started out with a DX camera, you may already own several DX lenses. 

Obviously, you can save a lot of money by upgrading to an FX camera and continuing to use your DX lenses, especially since high-quality full-frame lenses can cost just as much as a camera body itself.

On the other hand, vignetting and cropping to avoid it are both significant downsides that cut into the usefulness of your camera. You’ll have to put up with your FX camera behaving more like a DX one, and this can be a significant downside if you’re taking wide shots.

Also, while all of Nikon’s products are reasonably well-made and tested, DX lenses are less sturdy and durable than their FX counterparts. They’re not as good of an option if you’re getting into a niche like adventure photography and you’re concerned about the durability of your lenses.


Here are some frequently asked questions about Nikon’s FX and DX products.

What are the Disadvantages of an FX Lens on a DX Body?

If you use an FX lens on a DX body, you won’t get the same performance out of the lens. You’ll have to deal with the crop factor, where the photo’s edges are cut out, and the final image appears more zoomed in than it is.

Should I Buy FX Lenses for my DX Camera?

Using FX lenses with a DX camera can be a good idea if you want the higher image quality and specs of an FX lens without buying an expensive FX camera.

Is Nikon DX Dead?

Nikon’s DX line isn’t dead just yet. However, rumors have long pointed towards Nikon joining Canon and others in a move to mirrorless. If Nikon does shift focus entirely, the line of DX DSLRs may be discontinued.


Using a Nikon DX lens on an FX camera is possible, but you might want to think twice before doing so, as you’ll effectively turn your full-frame camera into an APS-C.

Would you consider mixing a crop sensor lens with a full-frame camera? Let us know what you think in the comments!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *