Sony’s latest E-mount cameras like the A6500, A6300 and A6000 offer the perfect balance between a compact size and great image quality. These cameras often come with a Sony 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens, which is a decent option for beginners. However, after a while everybody wants to upgrade to superior lenses that allow them to be more creative and get most out of their camera. With that said, in this article we’ll be focusing on some of the best lenses you can buy for your Sony E-mount camera.
Best Zoom Lenses for Sony A6500, A6300 and A6000
If you’re not turned away by the higher price, this Sony Zeiss is one of the best zoom lenses you can buy for your Sony APS-C mirrorless camera. It is very sharp and extremely versatile. Since it is a 35mm focal length equivalent of 24-105mm, you can use this lens for pretty much everything from landscapes to portraits, making it the ultimate travel lens.
As its name suggests, this lens is a result of a collaboration between Sony and Zeiss, which is always a winning combination. The 16-70mm delivers top-notch clarity and color. If the price is not an issue, you should definitely get this lens.
In case the previously mentioned lens is out of your budget, the 18-105mm (35mm full frame equivalent of 27-158mm) lens is a worthy alternative at a much lower price point. It gives you more reach than the Sony Zeiss, but it doesn’t go as wide. It’s also heavier, and not as sharp, but that’s expected.
The 18-105mm also has a handy feature for video shooters. It allows you to zoom in using a button, rather than turning a ring, thus providing you with smooth and constant zoom. In summary — if you need a versatile zoom lens for your E-mount camera without breaking the bank, look no further.
Sony 10-18mm f/4 OSS is your best bet if you’re looking for a versatile wide angle zoom lens for your Sony A6500, A6300 or A6000 camera. This 10-18mm (35mm full frame equivalent of 15-27mm) lens is a great choice for anyone looking to shoot landscapes on Sony ASP-C mirrorless cameras and it has a really good reputation when it comes to sharpness. It has a constant aperture of f/4 through the entire zoom range, which is a big plus. On top of that, it also has built-in Optical SteadyShot, which makes it much easier to snap blur-free photos in low light conditions.
Thanks to its weight of only 7.94 oz (225 g), Sony 10-18mm lens is a perfect choice if you plan on shooting video using a gimbal. If you need to pull focus while shooting video, keep in mind that this is a fly-by-wire lens, which means that there are no hard stops and it can be difficult to rack focus precisely.
Best Wide Angle Prime Lenses for Sony A6500, A6300 and A6000
This 36mm-equivalent lens is the most expensive medium wide angle lens for E-Mount cameras like Sony A6500 and its predecessors. It does, however, feature incredible Carl Zeiss optics and has a reputation for being one of the sharpest lenses for APS-C cameras. It is a great option for street and travel photography. The lens also has a large aperture of f/1.8, which makes it a great choice if you love shooting in low light conditions.
Thanks to the fact that its minimum focusing distance is just 6.2 inches (16 cm), Sony Carl Zeiss Sonnar 24mm f/1.8 ZA allows for 1/4 macro shooting. Large aperture and small minimum focusing distance also allow you to get close to a subject and separate it from the background. The bokeh this lens produces is truly beautiful.
This pancake style lens is the king when it comes to portability. It weighs just 2.47 oz (70 g), which makes it a great option if you want to travel light. When you put it on your Sony camera, you won’t even notice it’s there. It provides a 35mm-equivalent focal length of 24mm. The small size comes at a price, as corners are a bit soft at large apertures. However, if you’re just a beginner and getting into prime lenses, then you should definitely consider getting one of these for your camera bag.
Compared to previously mentioned wide angle E-mount lenses, Rokinon’s offering lacks autofocus. However, if you love manual focus lenses, this 21mm (35mm-equivalent focal length of 31.5mm) lens is for you. If you never used manual focus lenses, you should still give this one a go, because it’s really easy to focus on Sony mirrorless cameras thanks to focus peaking and focus magnification.
This lens is also great for video, and thanks to a pretty large aperture of 1.4, you can isolate your subject from the background despite the fact that this lens is relatively wide. Rokinon 21mm f/1.4 has decent sharpness across the frame at f/1.4, and the center sharpness is excellent from f/2 onwards.
Best Mid-Range Prime Lenses for Sony E-Mount Cameras
Almost every photographer out there has a 50mm lens in his arsenal, because they are usually pretty cheap and have multiple uses. Although this 52.5mm-equivalent lens is definitely pricier than 50mm lenses from other manufacturers, it is pretty sharp and has image stabilization, which is pretty rare for a prime lens of this focal length.
Sigma already had a 30mm f/1.4 lens for DSLRs with APS-C sensors, but instead of just adapting it to E-mount, they actually designed completely new optics for mirrorless cameras. The results are great — not only is the lens nearly twice as light, but it’s very sharp and produces gorgeous bokeh when it’s stopped down to f/1.4. The lens focuses pretty quickly, although a bit slower than Sony’s own lenses.
When you take into consideration every feature of this lens like small size, good price, great image quality and large f/1.4 aperture — it’s hard not to recommend this lens. The Sigma 30mm f/1.4 is definitely one of the best lenses for Sony E-mount mirrorless cameras, and it should be in everyone’s arsenal.
Best Telephoto Lenses for Sony A6500, A6300 and A6000
This 75-mm equivalent lens is a pretty good choice for portrait photography. It is pretty sharp, even in the corners and at wide apertures. It’s also good for lowlight shooting, thanks to its f/1.8 aperture and image stabilization. Bokeh that this lens produces is beautiful and creamy. Sony 50mm f/1.8 is one of the highest rated E-mount lenses and for a good reason!
With the f/1.2 aperture, this is the fastest 75mm-equivalent lens you’ll find for cameras like A6500 and its predecessors, making it a great choice for portrait photographers. It offers very good performance, even wide open.
The Rokinon is really sharp and bokeh is buttery smooth, but it comes with a couple of downsides as well. Firstly, this is a manual focus lens, which may be a turn off for some people. The lens also does not connect to your camera electronically, which means that there’s no EXIF information stored on the camera. If you’re okay with this, the Rokinon 50mm f/1.2 is a great choice.
This 55mm lens is the only one on the list that isn’t designed for APS-C cameras. The two companies created this amazing lens for Sony’s line of full-frame mirrorless cameras, but we had to include it in this list as well, because it’s simply one of the best lenses in Sony’s ecosystem.
This 82.5mm-equivalent lens is perfectly sharp wide open, and since it is a full-frame lens, there will be no vignetting on your Sony APS-C camera. The AF performance is amazing and the lens makes no noise while focusing. I absolutely love using it on my Sony A7RII.
Some people go as far as to say that this is one of the best lenses ever produced. Basically, Sony Zeiss Sonnar 55mm f/1.8 has only one con — it is expensive. However, if you can afford it — you’re going to love it!
If you want a cheap portrait lens for your E-mount camera, this is the one for you. It has impressive optical performance, but its aperture of f/2.8 isn’t that exciting. Because of this, it is best suited for close-up portraits. Sigma 60mm can focus as close as 50 cm, and that’s when it can produce a shallow depth of field and beautiful bokeh. In short — this budget lens is great way to get into portrait photography.
Best Macro Lens for Sony A6500, A6300 and A6000
Unfortunately, there are not a lot of options when it comes to macro lenses for Sony APS-C mirrorless cameras. With that said, this 30mm f3.5 macro lens will satisfy most users. This 45mm-equivalent lens can focus as close as 4 inches (about 10 cm), which results in a 1-to-1 magnification ratio. If you love shooting macro or simply want to give it a go for the first time, you can’t go wrong with this lens.