Cyprinidae is the biggest family of freshwater fish, but the phylogenetic relationships among its higher-level taxa are not yet fully resolved. In this study, we used the nuclear recombination activating gene 2 and the mitochondrial 16S ribosomal RNA and cytochrome b genes to reconstruct cyprinid phylogeny. Our aims were to (i) demonstrate the effects of partitioned phylogenetic analyses on phylogeny reconstruction of cyprinid fishes; (ii) provide new insights into the phylogeny of cyprinids. Our study indicated that unpartitioned strategy was optimal for our analyses; partitioned analyses did not provide better-resolved or -supported estimates of cyprinid phylogeny. Bayesian analyses support the following relationships among the major monophyletic groups within Cyprinidae: (Cyprininae, Labeoninae), ((Acheilognathinae, ((Leuciscinae, Tincinae), Gobioninae)), Xenocyprininae). The placement of Danioninae was poorly resolved. Estimates of divergence dates within the family showed that radiation of the major cyprinid groups occurred during the Late Oligocene through the Late Miocene. Our phylogenetic analyses improved our understanding of the evolutionary history of this important fish family.