Every seasoned photographer knows that a whole lot goes into wedding photography. It is your client’s big day and they expect everything to be top notch. Not to mention the fact that there are a lot of factors that have to put into consideration. With so many spinning wheels there are a lot that can go wrong.
If there is anything you must get right, that is your camera lens. The best camera lens for wedding photography allows you to accurately capture every aspect of a wedding with top-notch professionalism and artistry. To help you get the most of your wedding photography and deliver top quality pictures, here are some of the best high quality and very versatile lenses you can choose from.
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1. Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM Lens (Lowest priced lens)
The Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM lens is a replacement to the older EF 50mm f/1.8 II Lens from Canon and offers a significant upgrade over the older lens in many areas. Beginning from the build quality, you will start to see the changes canon introduced with this new lens. But asides getting an overhaul regarding its construction this lens also aces all tests regarding performance as well and is great for many occasions including wedding photography.
With a 50mm focal length, a full body frame up on this camera appears very natural and delivers quality close to that of a scene perceived with the eyes in terms of perspective and field of view. A wide aperture of f/1.8 also allows this lens to take in more light into the image sensor and makes action-stopping shutter speed attainable and allows you to capture clear, crisp photographs even in low lighting conditions. A combination of these makes this camera lens great for taking portraits and also makes night-time photography possible.
The addition of a stepping motor (STM) is another major upgrade over its predecessor, and while the STM motor is not entirely silent, it is a lot quieter than the previous model. This is asides being more accurate and maintaining focus even in low light.
In all, this camera lens might still not have the performance quality of the more high-end models, but for its price, it is a great addition to your camera kit and is great for wedding photography as well
- A stepping motor (STM) delivers near silent shot
- Sturdy and functional build
- Comes at an affordable price
- Purple fringing might be a problem.
2. Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM Lens (Slim and light lens)
Slim and incredibly lightweight this camera lens is still quite versatile and delivers fast, and sharp photography thanks to its advanced AF superior optics. A 35mm focal length makes it fit and appropriate for every occasion. Don’t take its portability for flimsiness though, despite its small size, this lens still features a top quality build with a durable frame and also has a solid feel that guarantees optimum durability.
This lens’ 7-blade circular aperture makes out-of-focus detailing possible and also helps to deliver superb colour balance. This lens also gives you a full-time manual focus capability. Its manual AF adjustment can focus down to a minimum distance of 0.16m or 0.5 ft. And still, deliver optically quality photographs typical of canon lenses. This lens also has an STM stepping motor, and although the STM might not be quite as fast or as quiet as other lenses, it still offers an improvement over the lenses in the non-STM class. Alternatively, it has a full-time manual focus as well.
While the compact size is the major selling point of this lens, it is also quite functional as well, and because it is very affordable, it is a fantastic purchase if you decide to go for it at the end of the day
- Portable compact build
- Quality optics
- Affordable cost
- An impressive minimum focus distance
- The lens lacks image stabilisation
- Does not work with full-frame sensors Canons
- It lacks a manual distance indicator for focusing
3. Sony FE 50mm F1.8 OSS Portrait Lens (best prime portrait lens)
This 50mm full-frame prime lens comes with a focal length that makes it just the perfect lens for taking the best wedding portraits. Its F1.8 aperture makes it easy to deliver top quality images, and its 7-blade aperture also complements the image quality as well as lens’ ability to produce beautifully de-focused bokeh backgrounds. Its large aperture also makes the lens ideal for shooting events at a low light on in dimly lit interior settings.
The lens’s compact and lightweight design makes it the ideal lens to be mounted on full frame E-mount cameras. Its Aspherical element control and double gauss configuration make it possible to suppress field curvature. The lens also has a metal mount which makes it extra durable while adding a sophisticated look and feel to the lens.
Despite being of midrange cost, this lens achieves truly refined optical results with high-quality images having minimal distortions and colour aberrations.
- Wide aperture.
- Crisp and sharp optics
- Compact and lightweight design
- Optical Stabilisation.
- Affordable cost
- Dim corners.
- Lacks weather sealing
- Makes use of Electronic manual focus.
4. Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 85mm f/1.4G Lens (AutoFocus for Nikon DSLR Cameras)
This top quality mid-range telephoto lens helps you to capture crisp and sharp images indoor and outdoor and under variable lighting conditions. Its ultra-fast f/1.4 aperture helps you to capture bright images and also makes it easy to focus on your subject with a beautiful background bokeh effect.
This camera lens has a Nano Crystal Coat which helps to reduce interior flare and ghosting across a wide array of wavelengths and helps to attain greater image clarity in the long run.
Other additional features of this lens include optimisation for edge to edge sharpness both on DX and on FX-format D-SLRs. Its internal focusing features also makes fast autofocus with minimal noise possible without necessarily changing the length of the lens. This way you can retain your working distance within the focus range.
However, because it takes this lens some time to focus, it might not be ideal for capturing dance floor photographs or other pictures where movement is involved during the wedding. However, for creating beautiful wedding portraits and family group shots, this lens is just the one to fit on your camera.
- Edge to edge sharpness
- Quiet and fast autofocus features
- Reduced ghosting and interior flare
- Beautiful bokeh effect
- The lens might take an extended time to focus
- A little heavy on the pocket
5. Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM Telephoto Zoom Lens (Best for long distance shots)
This lens is an upgrade of one of Canon’s most popular lenses, the EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS. Asides the fact that this camera offers a considerable improvement in terms of in terms of speed, performance and optical quality of photos, it retains all the excellent features that are typical of this top quality Camera Lens for professional photographers.
One of the main stand-out features of this camera is how easy it makes it for you to handle one of the most common problems that can arise during the wedding. There are times it is just impossible to get to the bride and groom. A lens that will deliver excellent quality picture while zooming is your best bet in this scenario and this camera does just that with a minimum focusing distance of 1.2m/3.9 ft. At all zoom settings.
The lens’ F/2.8 aperture is one of the widest openings in a lens available in the marketplace. With an aperture like that, your lens can allow more light to come in and deliver clean and sharp images. Other features such as a focus limiter with a range of 1.2 meters to infinity to 2.5 meters to infinity, a manual and auto-focus switch system as well as two image stabilisation modes helps to improve image quality further
- Great in tight spaces and low light conditions
- Excellent zoom capability
- High optical quality
- This lens is a bit bulky and heavy
The best professional photographers usually have more than one camera lens in their kit box (just like 2 cameras), which means you can as well choose more than one from this list of best camera lenses to buy for wedding photography as long as your budget can accommodate it. Also, as you might have noticed from their features, each of these cameras has different scenarios where they fit in perfectly. Some of them are great for close-up portraits while others are awesome for wider shots. This further supports the idea of buying more than one if you can afford it.
Alternatively, you can go for the cheaper alternatives on this list and rent the more expensive ones for your gigs if your budget constrains you. Finally, this list is by no means exhaustive; there are some equally impressive cameras which you can purchase at a similarly remarkable price as well. Feel free to check them out.
And if you’re also looking for a camera for wedding photography, here is our guide on how to pick one.