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Top 5 Lenses Every Photographer Should Have

Camera lenses for every photographer.

Whether you’re just starting out or you are a seasoned pro, every photographer needs a good variety of lenses in their kit. Here are the top 5 lenses we recommend photographers have no matter your experience level or preferred subject matter.

Standard Lenses

For many newcomers, a standard lens may be a kit lens or the one that comes with entry-level DSLR kits such as 18-55mm. Any seasoned photographer will tell you to shy away from kit lenses and invest in a good standard lens such as a 50mm. A 50mm lens is a great lens to have in a photographer’s arsenal because it has been said that it’s the most comparable to your natural line of sight. If portraits or natural looking images without distortion are your game, then a 50mm lens will be right up your alley.

Our Recommendation: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 Lens for Nikon

Nikon 24mm f/1.4G ED AF-S NIKKOR Lens
Nikon 24mm f/1.4G ED AF-S NIKKOR Lens

Wide Angle Lenses

Wide angle lenses allow for more use of your camera’s frame. From landscapes and group photos to fashion and advertising, wide angle lenses visually give you the world; especially if your camera body is a full-frame camera. Anything with a focal length of 35mm and less is considered to be a wide angle lens, such as a 24mm lens or 18mm-35mm wide-angle zoom lens.

Our Recommendation: Nikon 24mm f/1.4G ED AF-S NIKKOR Lens

Telephoto Lenses

For jobs that require you to get closer to a subject without physically moving close, telephoto lenses are key. Sports photography, nature and wildlife, and basically anything far away from your line of sight can be captured using a long lens or telephoto. A 70-200mm focal length is a standard telephoto lens that’s spot on for beauty and close-up portrait photography. As you get into the longer lenses like the 300mm, 500mm and even the 800mm, the heavier they are so you’ll need a tripod to eliminate camera shake. These lenses are not to be confused with macro lenses which allows a photographer to view subjects at almost microscopic levels.

Our Recommendation: Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L USM EF Mount Lens

Prime Lenses

Any lens that has a fixed focal length and/or lacks the ability to zoom is a prime lens. The aforementioned 50mm lens is one of the more popular prime lenses. Prime lenses have an added sharpness that sometimes gets distorted with zoom lenses such as wide angle zooms and telephoto lenses. Many professional photographers swear by prime lenses and only use them for this reason.

Our Recommendation: Canon 85mm f/1.2L II USM EF Mount Lens

Canon 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM EF Mount Lens
Canon 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM EF Mount Lens

All-Purpose Lenses

A good all-purpose lens will allow you to shoot a plethora of subjects in varying scenarios without having to change your lens. Many novice photographers start out with just one lens. Purchasing a good all-purpose lens will allow you to shoot everything you need until you can afford to build up your kit. Something along the lines of a 24mm-105mm lens runs the gambit from wide angle all the way to telephoto. If you have a simple job and don’t want to bring your entire kit along, then the all-purpose lens is the perfect way to travel light without skimping on range.

Our Recommendation: Canon 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM EF Mount Lens

 

Lenses are a photographer’s next best friend after the camera body itself. Therefore, it’s important to invest in quality camera lenses if you’re interested in taking more than just snapshots. Buying camera lenses can be pricey, but you don’t have to break the bank for high-quality glass. If you’re looking to add some of these lenses to your kit, then check out our extensive collection of pre-owned lenses and save up to 40% off retail with our everyday low prices.

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One comment

  1. Good article and a few would disagree respectlfully of course. Most might suggest a ultra-wide zoom like Tamrons 15-30 vc then either a walk around 24-105 f4 or a super zoom like 28-300 all full frame. then possible a 85 and or 35 f1.8 minimum aperatuures. I really don’t see a need for a kit lens. Just a honest opinion, thanks for the article

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