12 Best Lenses for Sony A7 in 2017
If you have just purchased a Sony A series camera, then the chances are that you will want to know what different lenses you should use with it. Experienced photographers can navigate those muddy waters with ease, but for consumers new to the game, the choice will be difficult. While there are less than 50 solid options available, understanding what they can do along with your needs is trouble begins.
After doing our due diligence, we whittled the field down for you and chose twelve of the best lenses for Sony A7 cameras. There is a nice mix of Prime and Zoom lenses available, and we’ve put together a quick DSLR lens buying guide assist you in your decision as well.
Top 12 Lenses for Sony A7 Comparison Chart
|Design||Name||Focal Length||Aperture||Rating (1-5)|
|1. Zeiss Batis Lens 2/25 for Sony a7||25mm||ƒ/2-22||4.7|
|2. Sony SEL28F20 FE 28mm f/2-22 Standard-Prime Lens||28mm||ƒ/2-22||4.7|
|3. Zeiss Batis 85mm f/1.8 Lens for Sony E Mount||85mm||ƒ/1.8||4.7|
|4. Sony 55mm F1.8 Sonnar T FE ZA Full Frame Prime Lens||55mm||ƒ-1.8-22||4.7|
|5. Sony 55-300mm F/4.5-5.6 DT A-Mount Zoom Lens||55-300mm||ƒ/4.5-5.6||4.7|
|6. Zeiss Loxia 35mm f/2 Biogon T Lens||35mm||ƒ/2-22||4.7|
|7. Sony 35mm F2.8 Sonnar T FE ZA Full Frame Prime Fixed Lens||35mm||ƒ/2-22||4.6|
|8. Sony FE 70-300mm SEL70300G F4.5-5.6 G OSS Lens||70-300mm||ƒ/4.5-5.6||4.5|
|9. Sony FE 70-200mm F4 G OSS Interchangeable Lens||70-200mm||ƒ/2.8-4.0||4.4|
|10. Sony 16-35mm Vario-Tessar T FE F4 ZA OSS E-Mount Lens||16-35mm||ƒ/4.0-22||4.2|
|11. Sony SEL24240 FE 24-240mm f/3.5-6.3 OSS Zoom Lens||24-240mm||ƒ/3.5-6.3||4.0|
|12. Sony FE 50mm F1.8 Lens||50mm||ƒ/1.8-22||4.0|
All of the best lenses for Sony A7 DSLR cameras will come in two styles with Prime and Zoom lenses. Each can take excellent photographs, but there is one huge difference between these two.
Prime – Simply put, a Prime lens is a “fixed” camera lens which means you cannot zoom so you’ll need to walk up to your subject if you want to zoom in. The main draw to a Prime or fixed lens is the price, they are cheaper and often have larger apertures as well.
Zoom – As the name implies, zoom lenses allow you to get up close and personal from a stationary position. Entry-level models may not be as prolific as their Prime-based counterparts, but high-end models can do it all. This style also offers you a broader range of focal length due to the design.
The aperture is arguably the hardest thing for rookies to wrap their minds around when shopping for a camera lens. Whenever you look at a lens, you’ll see two numbers on the outside with the focal length and aperture. The aperture numbers are called “f-stops” and begin with an f/ on any camera lens. In a nutshell, it’s the measurement of how much light your camera lens can take in, which in turn affects how you can shoot in low-light conditions.
Finding and understanding aperture numbers isn’t too tough even if things are a little backward. If you see a camera on our list with a large number like ƒ/4.5, it actually has a small or narrower aperture, so it captures less light. On the flip side, smaller the numbers like ƒ/1.8 mean it can take in more light and has a wider aperture. Unless it’s a fixed-aperture lens, you can adjust the amount of light allowed in on most models.
Whereas aperture deals with light, focal length takes us back into prime vs. zoom lens territory. Focal length is measured in “mm” and can range anywhere from 16mm to 300mm in our table above. On Prime lenses, you will only have one focal length while zoom lenses allow for a wider range of options. Regardless of the lens style, the lower numbers mean a wider view when you’re zoomed out while larger numbers give you a closer shot zoomed in.
Other Things to Consider
We’re going to be knee-deep in tech specs shortly, but before we get there, you should think about a few other things as well. The coating used on the optics is important, and does more than just protect your glass as it can kill flare-ups and reflections as well.
There is also the issue of manual vs. autofocus to contend with. It’s going to be a personal preference more often than not although many of our picks provide the best of both worlds. If it is automatic, battery life is something to keep an eye on; some will drain your camera’s battery rather quickly.
Top 5 Best Lenses for Sony A7 Reviews
When Zeiss isn’t busy making its own camera lenses, it’s producing parts to go into other optical devices. It’s safe to say they know a thing or two about cameras, and the Zeiss Batis 2/25 is certainly a contender as one of the best lenses for Sony A7 cameras.
We’re going to start by saying that if you are a beginner or have a limited budget, feel free to advance to our next option – this lens is not for the faint of heart. The price point is only one reason for that, however, as this particular lens may be overkill if you’re just starting out. It’s a prime lens with a set focal length of 25mm, and an aperture range of ƒ/2-22. Linear motors will keep things silent while it automatically focuses on your subject, but you can go manual as well with a tactical ring.
One nifty feature of this model lies in the housing where you’ll find a bright OLED display integrated on top which gives you depth of field and focal plane info on the fly. As you’d expect, the Zeiss Batis 2/25 is sealed against the weather and uses the company’s popular Zeiss T coating on the lenses.
Looking for a lens that looks like it belongs on your new Sony A7 camera? Sony’s optical’s are a fine choice, and the SEL28F20 FE is one that’s built to match the body of your A7. The aesthetics are appealing to the eye, but not why we chose this lens as one of our top picks.
The Sony SEL28F20 is a 28mm Full Frame lens that features a circular 9-blade aperture with a range of ƒ/2-22. The focus distance clocks in at 0.96 to 0.29 feet while using autofocus or at 0.82 to 0.25 feet in manual mode.
It’s another prime lens, so you won’t be able to zoom although the linear actuator is quicker than what you’ll find on many models that do. This one is also compatible with other Sony lens accessories including their Fisheye and Ultra-Wide converters.
Whether you prefer to go manual or automatic, you will be thrilled with the results the Sony SEL28F20 lens provides. The focal length won’t be ideal for everyone but is far from an issue considering you can always swap it out with another. Overall, it’s a great prime lens that will not break the bank.
If you liked what our first Sony A7 lens could do, but not the focal length, we have just the thing for you. At 85mm, it’s a large step up from the 28mm Zeiss lens. While it still has some of the same tech built in, this one is more suited for consumers looking for a wider view.
An 85mm lens can be used in a variety of conditions although many feel it is the perfect choice for photographers that take portraits. The focal length is great for headshots and can show the emotion in your subjects face. It’s made using the same techniques as the company’s other high-end lenses, so the build quality is top notch, and it also has the tiny OLED on top to help you land the perfect shot. A few tech specs of interest include the aperture with a minimum of ƒ/1.8 and a max of ƒ/22, threads set at 67mm with a 0.75mm pitch and it has a maximum reproduction ratio of 1:7:9.
This E Mount lens is a beauty and the only way to roll if you’re looking to try portrait photography from a prime lens. Despite its size, it’s still relatively light at 1.05 pounds and won’t take up much space in your bag at 3.19 x 3.62”. On the downside, it can run your battery dry fairly quickly compared to similar lenses in this range.
Our second fixed lens from Sony is the Sonnar T FE ZA Full Frame lens. It uses the famous Zeiss Sonnar T setup, and while it’s in the prime class, it’s a step up from the somewhat standard 28mm and 35mm lenses we tend to see in this range.
This is another E-mount lens geared for Sony A series cameras with a focal length of 55mm. You will also get an ample amount of photo to work with considering it’s a Full Frame lens. The magnification’s set at 14x while the maximum aperture “range” clocks in at ƒ/1.8. The build quality is solid as well thanks to an all-metal body that’s rated against the elements. This particular lens tips the scale at around 10 ounces and comes complete with a case, lens caps, and a hood.
Unlike the cameras they are mounted on, lenses usually don’t offer up too many options when it comes time to buy. The Sony Sonnar T FE ZA lens is an exception as you can buy it outright or in a Portrait Bundle which comes with an official Sony Battery Grip.
If prime lenses are not your cup of tea and you want one that can zoom, you’ll want to consider this Sony A-Mount lens carefully. Its ability to zoom will give your legs a break, and while it isn’t as exotic as others, it will definitely get the job done.
Camera gear comes in tiers when you’re dealing with quality, and that includes lenses and other accessories commonly found in camera bags. This lens is what we would refer to as a mid-range due to the build quality which uses ED glass for the optics and is of the DX variety. There are seven blades in the aperture, which has a range of ƒ/4.5 – 5.6 and a maximum of ƒ/4.5. The zoom can take you from 55mm to 300mm in a matter of seconds while a built-in distance decoder promises to keep your flash in check regardless of the distance to your subject.
Another cool perk we liked about this lens is the SAM motor. It’s quiet and efficient compared to lenses that require the camera to drive the zoom. It’s also one of the more affordable options for Alpha cameras, especially when you add in the zoom factor.