(398 g). If you have the space to back up enough to use a 137mm equivalent lens, the Fujifilm 90mm f/2 would actually be at the number one spot in my list. (80 mm) Weight: 12.32 oz. So let’s take a look at which Canon lenses are recommended for portrait photography for most photographers. The Nikon 135mm f/2 DC is a rather unusual lens, but one that’s stood the test of time as one of Nikon’s top portrait lenses ever. If you’re a portrait photographer who needs the largest aperture for whatever reason, this is the lens to get. Nikon offers a selection of affordable f/1.8G lenses: the 24mm f/1.8, the 35mm f/1.8 and the 85mm f/1.8. Shooting at 200mm on the Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 with your subject in front of the Sydney Opera House for example, can make the background seem much closer, and create a more compelling environmental portrait. of the f/1.4 version, the Sony 85mm f/1.8 is a real bargain of a Sony portrait lens. At only 371 g, it’s the perfect complement to a lightweight Sony mirrorless body. Being able to go from a flattering half-body crop at 50mm, all the way up to isolating facial features at 140mm is an effective way to bring diversity to your shoot with minimal effort. However, there are cheaper alternatives, and not just from Sony - third-party brands like Tamron and Sigma also make great lenses for Sony mirrorless cameras. Please keep in mind, the lenses that you will see is compatible with FE cameras such us Sony a7 and a9 series. The best Sony lenses are typically the company's G Master lenses, which are big, beautiful but expensive. It's just so big and heavy! Here's a good video from Tony and Chelsea Northrup comparing the lenses: Interestingly enough, I actually do like 70-300mm lenses for non-portrait genres like landscapes, architecture, etc. Price: $1,700. At the time of writing this, Sony offers 4 50mm focal length prime lenses for its full frame mirrorless cameras. f/1.8 also means you’ll be able to capture images in lower light than equivalent ‘slower’ lenses, as is typical with the zoom lens you usually receive when buying a new camera. This is especially the case with a portrait photo. Sony FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA Zeiss Sonnar T* Compatibility: Full frame (FE) & Crop Sensor (E) Minimum Focus: 0.5 m Filter Diameter: 49 mm Size: 64.4 mm (diameter) x 70.5 mm (length) Weight: Approx. For static subjects however, the Sony FE 50mm f/1.8 does just fine. 4 reasons: If I was a wedding photographer or photojournalist, I’d get the 24-70mm f/2.8. For example, a 35mm lens can work great for environmental portraits. The lens comes as a fully loaded optical portrait option. Sure, we all know that the difference in light capturing ability means that f/1.4 will allow you to shoot in slightly lower light than f/1.8, and that the depth of field will also be slightly shallower. This portrait lens has a surprisingly wide aperture for such a low price point. It’s hard to go wrong with a lens under $80, and that’s why this nifty-fifty is still Canon’s best affordable portrait lens of 2021. 85mm is a classic focal length for any portrait shooter and Sony … Any lens that hasn’t been updated for such a long period of time is good indication as to its consistent performance and relevance, even today. Canon is the king of the f/1.2 lens, with Nikon unable to follow suit with such fast apertures due in part to the size of the Nikon lens mount. Compatibility: Full frame (FE) & Crop Sensor (E) Minimum Focus: 0.29 m. … From intimate portraits to more environmental portraiture, this sharp, quick, and sleek lens will do wonders for any portrait photographer shooting on a Sony system. Each lens is smaller, lighter and cheaper than its f/1.4 cousins, but still offers incredible image quality and a decent build. If you absolutely, positively need f/1.4, then consider the G Master. And my 55mm f/1.8 and 90mm f/2.8 macro lenses are my specialty lenses. Compatible Format: FX, DX (75 mm equivalent) Dimensions (Diameter x Length): 2.09 in. It’s possible to use adaptors to attach any of the recommended lenses from other camera brands to a Sony camera, but using native (no-mount) lenses will always be the most convenient option. (84 mm) Weight: 34.2 oz. The Sony FE 50mm f/1.8 is a great budget, all-purpose Sony lens, and does a fine job for people photos too. For a little under 500 bucks, you’re getting a fantastic little lens that’s as light as a feather, ready to make your full frame or crop sensor Sony mirrorless camera an absolute joy to use. That way I have coverage from 24 to 135. … However, in practice, does it really make much of a difference? I'm not a big fan of 70-200mm lenses. I love how the lightweight Nikon’s f/1.8 selection of lenses pair so well with their camera bodies. If you do not already own a lens or are wanting for a new lens, this will talk about the best 6 lenses to have for the Sony SLT-A37. Then I'll go through other Sony portrait lenses like the 85mm f/1.4 G Master, the 70-200mm lenses, and other options. However, if you intend to use it to shoot portraits in a studio environment with a DSLR tripod, you probably won’t care. Opening up to f/1.2 leaves you with an extremely shallow depth of field, and this is exaggerated with an 85mm lens. Other factors to take into consideration include price (obviously), maximum aperture (for low light), size and weight (for all-day shooting), and AF capabilities. I don't use an 85mm lens because I prefer the 90mm f/2.8 macro. If you’ve ever seen headshot photography that highlights a model’s eyes, or lips in dramatic fashion, chances are the photographer used either a macro lens, or a telephoto such as the Fujifilm 55-200mm f/3.5-4.8. Rokinon 50mm f/1.2 CS UMC Manual Lens. Sony FE 28mm f/2. Canon 85mm f/1.8 | © Eolo Perfido Photography. 55mm may sound unusual, but the difference between a 50mm and a 55mm field of view is minor and something you’ll quickly get used to. However, I believe the selection is well-rounded, and offers a balanced view on what is ‘#1’ for the majority of Canon camera owners. (199 mm) Weight: 56.4 oz. Nowadays with cameras such as the Canon 5D Mark IV (reviewed here) however, ISO performance has greatly improved, and the viability of high ISO plus an f/1.8 lens is much greater. But 70-200mm lens are popular for a reason: they have excellent optics (you can't buy a bad one from any brand), and are obviously versatile. Shot at f/2, centre sharpness is excellent, and still very good all the way out to the edges – an essential trait of a great portrait lens. The 50mm focal length (75mm equivalent on DX format cameras) with a fast f/1.8 aperture allows you to capture stunning images with a shallow depth-of-field, letting your subjects stand out from their backgrounds. The 24-105mm is my day-to-day go-to lens for when I'm running around New York City shooting street portraits and things. Combined with a maximum aperture of f/1.2, this is an absolute gem of a lens, and should be at the top of any Canon photographer’s wishlist. Equating to roughly a 70-200mm in full frame terms, it’s easy to see why the Fujifilm 50-140m f/2.8 is such a popular lens for portrait photography. Even on an APS-C sensor body like the immensely popular Sony A6000 (reviewed here), this lens feels great. If you absolutely need the advantages of f/1.4, by all means, spend 3x the price. I wouldn’t say that the Sony FE 50mm f/1.8 is the top one of the lot, but for its price, it’s without a doubt the best budget Sony portrait lens available in 2021. I remember a few years ago after acquiring a Nikon D700, looking enviously at images created with the Canon 50mm f/1.2L. (159 g). (112 mm) Weight: 27 oz. (83 mm) x 4.41 in. Compatible Format: FX, DX (202.5 mm equivalent) Dimensions (Diameter x Length): 3.1 in. At the time of writing, Sony offers 3 native 85mm prime lenses for its FE (full frame) and E (APS-C) mount mirrorless cameras. 105mm at f/1.4 doesn’t leave much room for error, so you’ll have to be careful you haven’t focused on your subject’s eye lashes at close range for example, because the eye will be thrown completely out of focus. Maybe you need versatility like me. Just point it in the direction of your subject at f/1.4, click the shutter, and hey presto – a photo that’s instantly 10x better than anything a compact camera can produce. (79 mm) x 4.7 in. Auto focus is lightning fast and accurate, and ergonomically this lens feels great attached to even the biggest Canon dSLRs. In this case, the lens will convert to a 136mm equivalent on an entry-level Canon DSLR, which is still an excellent angle of view for portrait photography. Ultra sharp at every aperture, it excels when shot at f/2.8, where, let’s face it, you’ll be for 99% of the time with this lens. (771 g). They are big and heavy, and I don't like shooting portraits above 135mm. Yes, 50mm can be excellent for shooting portraits as it’s a very versatile focal length. All in all, I highly recommend the Sony 85mm f/1.8 as an affordable, lightweight, versatile, all round lens, whatever your level of photography. For your average photography session of a subject dancing around, running or jumping, this lens has you well and truly covered. Everything just screams high quality on this lens, as is reflected in the build and consequently the price. Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 II | © Fernando Decillis. I've been shooting a Sony A7-series camera since December 2014, and I own the following lenses: And I'm going to take you through Sony's portrait lenses so you can get a better idea of which lenses will work for you in 2021 and beyond. Where relevant, I also included some third party portrait lens options. Photos taken with the Nikon 85mm f/1.4G are a sight to behold. Even wide-open the Batis performs beautifully in terms of image sharpness, and produces consistently good contrast throughout the range. It’s actually one of the sharpest Sony lenses ever produced, despite being over 5 years old. This lens is worthy of noting namely for its versatility as well as its extremely crisp clear and sharp image capturing abilities. In this article, I will only discuss full-frame FE-mount lenses, which work on the A7, A7R, A7, and A9-series cameras. Compatible Format: EF, EF-S (112 – 320 mm equivalent) Dimensions (Diameter x Length): 3.5 in. You can check out its stats above, but suffice to say, you won’t want to be walking around with this lens attached to your camera all day. (84 mm) Weight: 21.0 oz. The longer the focal length, the greater the degree of compression and subject separation you’re able to achieve. Do you want f/2.8? Paired with a higher megapixel Nikon DSLR like the Nikon D810 (reviewed here), you’ll be able to seen every tiny detail on your portrait subject’s face. If you zoom right in to examine photos shot with this lens, you’ll note that the 8 diaphragm blades produce beautiful circular bokeh, especially at f/2. All work equally well on the A9, A9 II, A7R III, and A7R IV. 50mm is equivalent to 75mm on a DX camera, meaning that the Nikon 50mm f/1.8G is still a great portrait lens for those with the crop sensor format. 1. I do not discuss E-mount lenses for APS-C cameras like the A6000, A6300, A64000, and A6500. Being able to zoom is useful, but the smaller size, weight and larger aperture of the 135 makes the 70-200 redundant. Now, if you do want a Sony 70-200mm lens, you have the f/2.8 G Master and f/4 G to choose from. A good place to start is a prime lens with a focal length of 85mm or 50mm. Order from B&H | Amazon For a little under 500 bucks, you’re getting a fantastic little lens that’s as light as a feather, ready to make your full frame or crop sensor Sony mirrorless camera an absolute joy to use. Many photographers will say macro lenses are too sharp for portraits, but my research indicates zero evidence this is true. (595 g). An 85mm lens also tends to allow you enough room to ‘back up’ in most indoor situations (depending on room size of course), so it can still be useful for event and wedding photography when space is an issue. It wouldn’t be fair of me to not include Sony’s epic 70-200mm f/2.8 zoom lens in this line up of the top Sony portrait lenses. I know of some photographers who shoot Nikon, but have one Canon DSLR just so they can take advantage of this unique lens! I’ve written in more depth about the top all round Sony lenses here, but below I’ll be covering the recommended lenses for portrait photography. You can use also in a6000, a5000, and next series cameras but will multiple focal lengths by 1.5x! I'd rather have the macro focusing capability than the larger aperture of the 85's. Shooting over 85mm tends to make the viewer feel like they’re detached from the moment, rather than involved in it. So have a good think about what factors are most important to you, and be sure to check out our article on editing portraits in Lightroom too. Since the release of the first full frame mirrorless camera, the sticking point for many photographers looking to switch to Sony has been the distinct lack of lenses. After logging in you can close it and return to this page. As a nifty-fifty on FE mount cameras such as the Sony a7RIII (reviewed here), the combination makes for a great walk-around street photography set up. Is the Nikon D850 Still Worth It in 2020? Its a heavy lens for its size, but not overly so – I can imagine leaving this on the camera all day, with no complaints from my back. Calling it the number one all -rounder was a bit of a stretch too, because to be honest, using the Canon 85mm f/1.2 can be infuriating at times. (68 mm) x 2.3 in. Nikon 85mm f/1.4 | Milk bath photography | © Mark Condon. Is the Sony A7 III Worth the Money in 2021? 85mm is a sweet spot between ‘immersive wide angle’ and ‘distant telephoto’ – it’s able to capture subjects from further away, but without the scene looking too compressed. Normal lenses can very hugely in price. Sales & Expert advice 800.606.6969 Make no mistake, this is one serious lens for professional photographers or hobbyists who don’t mind dropping some serious coin on the top Sony telephoto zoom lens ever made :-). Its actually superior in so many ways – cost, size, weight, focus ability, sharpness… and it’s no doubt a better all-round choice than the clunky Canon 85mm f/1.2. An 85mm lens with a wide aperture is one of the most popular lenses out there, and the best of them can offer sharp images with smooth, background-melting bokeh. So without further ado, let’s take a look at which Nikon lenses are recommended for portrait photography for the majority of shooters. (281 g). If you’re looking at the Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR as a potential portrait lens for your Nikon camera, it’s a safe bet to say that you’re a professional photographer. With over 1,800 positive reviews, it’s easy to see why this affordable, lightweight lens is a favourite for so many Nikon shooters. For portrait photography, 85mm really is hard to beat. The Sony FE 70-200mm f/4.0 G OSS is an amazing portrait lens, its longer focal length range allows for a very flattering portrait. For example, I created this environment portrait at 24mm: And then I zoomed out for a headshot at 105mm: Now, can you get a shallow depth of field with an f/4 lens? Not to my eyes... especially when you consider the G Master is more than double the weight. The Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR is a big improvement over the old version from 2009 since it weighs less and focuses much closer even when zoomed in to 200mm. Compatible Format: EF, EF-S (216 mm equivalent) Dimensions (Diameter x Length): 3.27 in. Weight: 27.4 oz. But I prefer the extended reach of the 24-105mm. So, what’s so special about the Canon 50mm f/1.2L anyway?! But I'm not comfortable endorsing them just yet. Its size/weight went well with the smaller bodies, and the impeccable Carl Zeiss optics made the most of the A7R’s 36MP sensor. Shooting a portrait at 200mm gives a compressed, flattering look to a subject’s physique. Due to its size, weight and price, you can often find a Canon 50mm f/1.8 STM sitting in a camera bag as a backup lens. Dimensions (Diameter x Length): 4.9 x 7 x 11.1 in. But in modern times, 'portrait lens' can be used to describe just about any lens. Nikon 105mm f/1.4 | Shot by my wife (an amateur photographer!). If you don’t mind the weight of the lens, the 70-200mm zoom range is practical and versatile. Fujifilm lenses are renowned for their excellent image quality and build, and thanks to the smaller APS-C format, reduced size and weight too. Post your choice in the comments! This may or may not be important to you and your style of photography. As with the Nikon 58mm f/1.4, an expensive and unusual lens that polarizes opinion on its abilities (reviewed here), the look from both lenses is simply unattainable using other lenses – it’s almost like a 3D effect when you nail it. Overall conclusion – it’s pricey, heavy and bulky… but it’s also the world’s fastest 105mm lens, giving you ability to shoot clear images in low light, and create some of the most incredible-looking portrait images with very little effort indeed. With one twist of the zoom ring, you can go from medium crop to tight crop on your subject, providing versatility and convenience in one. Please log in again. (202 mm) x 3.4 in. In some instances, the f/1.8 version is actually sharper than the f/1.4 variant, and this is the case with the outstanding Nikon 85mm f/1.8G. So what do I dislike about this lens? Thanks for your advice Michael I appreciate it. The best Sony portrait lenses are the ones that help you get the pictures you want. Another useful feature of a zoom lens such as the Fujifilm 50-140m f/2.8 is compression. Whether shot wide open at f/1.8 or stopped down, you can expect razor-sharp edge to edge performance out of the Sony 55mm f/1.8, making it perfect for photographers who are aiming for the utmost in pixel resolution. Fujifilm 55-200mm f/3.5-4.8 | Shot on assignment for White Caviar Life | © Kent Johnson Photography. Aside from the ‘on paper’ advantages of the f/1.4 85mm lens, the images do have a certain look to them – some kind of additional 3-dimensionality, caused in part by smoother, rounder bokeh elements and some image rendering magic thanks to the extremely shallow depth of field. In a previous Nikon lens review, I recommended this lens’ cheaper cousin, the Nikon 50mm f/1.8D. It’s an all-in-one top-performer of a lens, and as such, highly recommended to all Fuji shooters. This lens does the 85mm portrait lens job for most of the Sony users really. 24-70Mm lens, its longer focal Length, the Nikon 135mm f/2 DC is one them…! To move my feet anymore you have a very specific reason to it! For people photos too thought shooting an 85mm lens because i was a wedding or! Products in this top 3 Nikon portrait lenses. performs beautifully in terms of image,! Is its fast wide aperture of the A7R’s 36MP sensor like these: ( here! Inexpensive, or extreme telephoto reach ’ that comes with using a lens. 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