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10 Best Canon Lenses For Video Production

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While a standard DSLR camera works great on its own, it’s not optimized for video projects. If you want to capture professional footage, consider picking up a lens designed specifically for video. Keep reading for the best Canon lens for video.

Best Canon Lenses For Video

To help you pick a scanner that suits your budget and specific needs, here’s a list of the top canon lenses for video in 2022:



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4.8
5/5
  • Compatible with: Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony A
  • Focal Range: 35mm
  • Aperture range: f/1.5 – f/22
  • Weight: 24.7 oz

The Rokinon 35mm T1.5 Cine Lens is a parfocal lens. This means the focus doesn’t automatically change as you zoom in or out on your subjects.

This cine lens allows for a gear ring that lets you seamlessly adjust the focus to your needs. The focus ring has markings that show the center point and the depth of field for the aperture settings. For instance, at f/22 aperture and a distance of 1m, subjects that are 0.7m to 2.5m away will be in focus. That wide aperture makes for excellent low light performance, allowing for low ISO settings even in low-light settings.

Sample Rokinon 35mm T1.5 Cine Lens video

PROS

  • Affordable
  • Good optic
  • Full manual operation
  • Geared focus and aperture rings
  • De-clicked aperture
  • Lens marking on side of barrel
  • Focus ring solid
  • Lens flare clean

CONS

  • Plastic build
  • Plastic lens filter thread
  • No apparent weather sealing


5.0
5/5
  • Compatible with: Canon EOS and other Canon DSLRs
  • Focal Range: 50mm
  • Aperture range: f/1.58– f/22
  • Weight: 5.6 oz

The Canon 50mm f/1.8 STM is the third low-budget 50mm lens in Canon’s EF range and a follow-up to the EF 50mm f/1.8 II lens. 

This 50mm lens has an aperture as fast as f/1.8 and allows you to get nice out-of-focus backgrounds. The focus ring is a major improvement from its predecessor since it is electronically coupled to the autofocus motor. As a result, it turns extremely smoothly. 

The absence of image stabilization may be discouraging, but the lens more than makes up for this with great build quality and Canon’s super spectra coatings that reduce flaring caused by bright lights.

Sample Canon 50mm f/1.8 STM Lens video

PROS

  • Very affordable
  • Sharp at f/1.8
  • Lightweight
  • Silent, smooth video focus

CONS

  • Can flare easily
  • Modest barrel distortion
  • Slower focus
  • Some fall-off at wide aperture
  • Omits stabilization
  • Narrower field of view on APS-C cameras
  • Hood not included


5.0
5/5
  • Compatible with: Nikon DX, FX in DX Crop Mode, Canon (APS-C)
  • Focal Range: 17-50mm
  • Aperture range: f/2.8 – f/22
  • Weight: 19.2 oz

One of the main attractions of the Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 is its image stabilization. It has a first maximum aperture of f/2.8, letting in almost twice as much light as your average kit lens and four times as much light when you’re zoomed in to 50mm. 

The extra light is special because it lets you make videos indoors or in the dark. Plus, you can get a more shallow depth of field. Sigma’s optical stabilizer also adds sharper picture quality. 

What’s more, the Sigma lens is fairly small in size, especially compared to Canon’s version.

Sample Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 Lens video

PROS

  • Constant aperture of f/2.8
  • Smooth zooming action
  • Delivers excellent results

CONS

  • Manual focus ring complicated
  • All-plastic outer construction
  • Resolution falls off above f/11
5.0
5/5
Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 Lens
Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 Lens


5.0
5/5
  • Compatible with: Canon
  • Focal Range: 17-55mm
  • Aperture range: f/2.8 – f/22
  • Weight: 24.4 oz

The Canon EF-S 17-55m f/2.8 IS USM is one of the best lenses with standard zoom for Canon cameras like the Rebel, 80D or 90D, or the 7D series. It corresponds with the focal range offered by a 27-88mm lens. 

The Canon lens also comes with a built-in stabilizer and ring-type ultrasonic AF. The ring-type USM (Ultrasonic Motor) delivers near-instant AF performance for mid-tier cameras. 

Great for low-light environments, this flexible lens offers the best Canon features in focusing and image stabilization.

Sample Canon EF-S 17-55m f/2.8 IS USM Lens video

PROS

  • Good quality images
  • Very fast autofocus
  • Excellent image stabilization for hand-held shots

CONS

  • Lens quite big
  • No lens hood included
  • Very expensive


5.0
5/5
  • Compatible with: Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony A
  • Focal Range: 18-35mm
  • Aperture range: f/1.8 – f/16
  • Weight: 28.48 oz

The Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM L is the very first DSLR zoom lens to have a very fast constant maximum aperture of f/1.8, which is useful for shooting at night or indoors. 

The fast aperture lets in twice as much light as most other lenses that typically have a maximum aperture of f/28. The result is a nice background that’s over twice as blurry. Though the 18-35mm zoom range isn’t very long, this is basically a wide-angle zoom lens. 

Sample Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM L Lens video

PROS

  • Affordable
  • Brilliant image quality
  • Excellent in low light
  • Good build quality
  • Good flare resistance

CONS

  • Big and heavy
  • Autofocus comes up short


5.0
5/5
  • Compatible with: Canon, Nikon
  • Focal Range: 135mm
  • Aperture range: f/2 – f/32
  • Weight: 27.2 oz

At the maximum aperture of f/2, the Canon EF 135mm f/2 USM L lens can give you interesting subject isolation and striking close-ups. Its absence of image stabilization makes it less than ideal for filming hand-held. Plus, the autofocus motor is very fast and quiet. In terms of weight, it’s just handy enough so that it can be paired with one of Canon’s bigger camera bodies.

Sample Canon EF 135mm f/2 USM L Lens video

PROS

  • Affordable
  • Brilliant image quality
  • Excellent in low light
  • Good build quality
  • Good flare resistance

CONS

  • Big and heavy
  • Autofocus comes up short


5.0
5/5
  • Compatible with: Canon EF
  • Focal Range: 85mm
  • Aperture range: f/1.5 – f/22
  • Weight: 21.7 oz

The build quality of the Rokinon 85mm T1.5 Cine Lens is much better than you might expect, considering its relatively low cost. The focus ring and aperture ring are so smooth, there is no resistance whatsoever when you rotate the de-clicked aperture ring. 

The smooth operating function allows you to easily change your lighting environment. This lens is also pretty sharp at the maximum aperture of T1.5, delivering remarkable bokeh rendering.

Sample Rokinon 85mm T1.5 Cine Lens video

PROS

  • Affordable
  • Geared for cinema use
  • Even illumination across frame
  • Minimal distortion
  • Extremely sharp when stopped down
  •  Available for multiple systems

CONS

  • A little soft at f/1.4
  • Omits optical stabilization
  • Manual focus design not for everyone


5.0
5/5
  • Compatible with: Canon EF
  • Focal Range: 10-18mm
  • Aperture range: f/4.5–5.6 – f/22–29
  • Weight: 9 oz

Unlike a typical Canon kit lens, the Canon 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM lens starts zooming at 18mm down to 10mm, giving you a huge field of view. This is useful for shooting in tight spaces or wider shots in a spacious area. It also has a relatively narrow maximum aperture of f/4.5-/5.6.

The front element of the lens does not extend or rotate as you change focus, which is a big relief for people using polarizing or graduated filters. Another great feature is its image stabilization. You might consider this if you prefer a lens that’s relatively small, light, and cheap with potentially better image quality.

Sample Canon 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM Lens video

PROS

  • Affordable
  • Geared for cinema use
  • Even illumination across frame
  • Minimal distortion
  • Extremely sharp when stopped down
  •  Available for multiple systems

CONS

  • A little soft at f/1.4
  • Omits optical stabilization
  • Manual focus design not for everyone


5.0
5/5
  • Compatible with: Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony A
  • Focal Range: 11-16mm
  • Aperture range: f/2.8 – f/22
  • Weight: 19.4 oz

The Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 lens is a really popular ultra-wide-angle lens for filmmakers. It has low distortion and a fast f/2.8 aperture throughout its small zoom range. Though it’s noticeably weightier, the lens is nicely made. The zoom ring is also smooth, designed for cropped sensor cameras, so it will work on most DSLR video cameras. 

One highlight is that you can also use it on a full-frame camera if you set it to 15mm or 16mm. The autofocus/manual mode switch also takes some getting used to, but it does work smoothly for filmmaking.

Sample Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 Lens video

PROS

  • Built-in autofocus
  • Hood supplied
  • Internal focusing
  • Fast and bright at wide end
  • Fast and bright at tele end
  • Constant f/2.8 aperture throughout the range

CONS

  •  Image distortion


5.0
5/5
  • Compatible with: Canon EF, Nikon F
  • Focal Range: 8mm
  • Aperture range: f/3.5 – f/22
  • Weight: 15.1 oz

The Rokinon 8mm f/3.5 is sold under several names: Rokinon, Samyang, Bower, Pro-Optic. Compatible with pretty much any camera system, including Canon, the Rokinon 8mm delivers an impressive field of view. But despite its popularity, this fisheye lens has also been criticized for its lack of autofocus. 

Sample Rokinon 8mm f/3.5 Lens video

PROS

  • Way cheaper than any other fisheye lens
  • Great image quality
  • Brilliant color and contrast
  • Top build quality

CONS

  • Manual focus
  • Color fringing
5.0
5/5
Rokinon 8mm f/3.5 Lens


Buying Guide

There are many considerations to note before you make the big spend on your lens. Here are the main factors that will affect your buying decision:

Aperture

The aperture is responsible for the amount of light, depth of field, and sharpness of a picture or video. It is the opening in a lens that allows light into the camera. This is measured using “f/stops” or “t-stops” and is typically written as numbers (e.g. f/2.8, T1.5). The “f” or “T” indicates the focal length or telephoto of the lens.

At minimum aperture – typically f/16, f/22, or f/32 – you get a deep depth of field, so every object in your shot will be in focus, whether near or far from the lens. On the other hand, maximum aperture (usually f/2.8) has a shallow depth of field. This is when only your subject is in focus, and the background is blurry.

Focal Length

The focal length of a lens is indicated in millimeters. The higher the focal length, the more zoomed the lens will be. Popular focal length specifications include:

  • Ultra Wide Angle (14mm-24mm)
  • Wide Angle (24mm-35mm)
  • Standard (35mm-70mm)
  • Short Telephoto (70mm-105mm)
  • Telephoto (105mm-300mm)

Build

In terms of build quality, one of the first things to consider is weather resistance. Check if the lens mount is plastic or metal because a metal mount typically means a longer lifespan for your lens. The type of glass used also determines the sharpness of the lens.

Size & Weight

If you’re a lifestyle vlogger or first-time filmmaker, a smaller, lighter lens might suffice. However, a cinematographer may want more advanced lenses, which are often bigger and heavier.

Zoom vs Prime Lens

Zoom lenses are typically more versatile, convenient, and simple. Prime lenses, on the other hand, have fixed focal lengths, so they are usually sharper and let in more light.

APS-C vs Full-frame

Lenses that work on APS-C (Advanced Photo System type-C) camera bodies are usually smaller and lighter than those that fit full-frame cameras. An APS-C should suffice for smaller-scale projects, whereas full-frame cameras have all the functionality (and bulk) for professional videography.

Compatibility

Modern digital cameras have lens mount systems designed for specific cameras. Typically, all lenses designed for a full-frame DSLR camera are compatible with smaller crop-sensor cameras. For Canon, however, the reverse is not always the case. For example, the smaller EF-S mount lenses don’t always mount to Canon full-frame cameras.

Accessories

Lens accessories are worthwhile investments that can make you more efficient and extend the lifespan of your lenses. Here are the basics:

  • Lens cap and hood
  • Lens case
  • Lens wraps
  • Lenscoat or sleeve
  • Hoodie lens hood covers
  • Extension tubes or bellows
  • Reverse rings
  • Close-up filter rings
  • Macro couplers
  • Teleconverters
  • Add-on or conversion lenses
  • Lens and optics cleaning supplies

 

Conclusion

Each of these Canon lenses offers something unique that will take your vlogging, films, or home videos to the next level.

If you’re just starting out with video blogging gear, the Canon 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM is a great option. It delivers an impressive field of view, which is useful for shooting in smaller spaces like a living room or home office. Alternatively, the Canon EF 135mm f/2 USM L is great for travel vlogging because of the zoom quality. There’s also the Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM L, which is great for indoors or low-light settings.

On the other hand, professional filmmakers can choose from any of the more advanced lenses, like the Rokinon Cine 85mm T1.5, which offers great follow focus and bokeh rendering. Meanwhile, the Canon EF-S 17-55m f/2.8 IS USM has exceptional focusing and image stabilization. Finally, you can opt for the Rokinon 8mm f/3.5 for its mesmerizing fisheye effect.

Whatever the project, there’s a lens for you to capture each moment in grand style.



5.0
5/5
  • Compatible with: Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony A
  • Focal Range: 35mm
  • Aperture range: f/1.5 – f/22
  • Weight: 24.7 oz


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