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The Best Lenses For the Sony A6100

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best lenses for Sony Alpha A6100 mirrorless cameras

 

Sony was at the forefront of developing mirrorless cameras when the technology first arrived on the scene.

So Sony has had a long time to develop its lens offerings, so you have a lot to choose from. Their lens selection has quite a bit of overlap, which is great for having options, but it can make it difficult to decide what lenses are the best fit for you.

We analyzed the best lenses for Sony Alpha A6100 so you can make faster, more informed decisions when it comes to adding the next lens to your kit.

If you want a quick answer, the overall best lens for Sony A6100 cameras is the Sony E 16-55mm f/2.8 G. It has an extremely useful focal range that won’t hold you back from shooting any type of photography and it has great image quality.

Introducing the 9 Best Lenses for Sony Alpha A6100

For more of the best lenses for Sony A6100 cameras, keep reading.

Best Wide Angle Lens for Sony A6100: Sony 10-18mm F/4 OSS

Sony - E 10-18mm F4 OSS Wide-Angle Zoom Lens
Sony – E 10-18mm F4 OSS Wide-Angle Zoom Lens

The Sony 10-18mm F/4 OSS is a lightweight ultrawide zoom lens that delivers impressive performance in a compact form factor.

With this lens, you can hand-hold it in almost total darkness because it’s wide and has optical stabilization.

The best thing about this lens is that it’s only a fraction of the size and weight of full-frame ultrawide lenses.

This Sony 10-18mm lens is a fantastic lens that delivers everything we’ve come to expect from mirrorless camera systems (and especially APS-C cameras): great image quality and small size! An A6100 and this lens are so small and lightweight that it’s easy to forget if you have them around your neck.

The Sony E 10-18mm F4 OSS is a good choice for system owners who are looking for an ultra-wide zoom lens with autofocus and a fast aperture. That said, this Sony A6100 wide-angle lens is also one of only a few wide-angle zoom lenses for APS-C Sony cameras available unless you’re OK with paying more for bigger and heavier full-frame lenses.

Regardless, the Sony E 10-18mm F4 OSS has superb optics, and it produces excellent edge-to-edge results even at smaller apertures. You’ll also receive optical stabilization and a versatile front filter thread, all in a small, lightweight form that’s easy to transport. Overall, it’s a great Sony A6100 wide-angle lens.

Pros:

  • Great image quality
  • Compact lens design
  • Lightweight
  • Balances well on the Sony A6100
  • Great for travel, landscape, and architectural photography
  • Good autofocus performance

Cons:

  • f/4 aperture can be limiting
  • Has some distortion in the corners
  • No weather sealing

Best Budget Lens for Sony A6100: Sony E 20mm f/2.8

Sony 20mm F2.8 Prime Lens
Sony 20mm F2.8 Prime Lens

There are several options when it comes to the best cheap lenses for Sony A6100.

The one I gravitate to is the Sony E 20mm f/2.8. This lens is a great value for the money and its compact size makes you want to take it with you everywhere you go. Its simplicity gets you back to the roots of photography, which lets you focus more on doing photography rather than on your gear.

At 20mm on the Sony A6100’s APS-C sensor, the equivalent focal length comes out to 30mm. It’s not a focal length that a lot of photographers have shot at because 28mm and 35mm primes and their equivalents are a lot more common. It doesn’t take long to get used to it though.

The compact size and low weight of the Sony E 20mm f/2.8 make it a great lens to carry with you every day and makes for a stealthy street photography setup.

Pros:

  • Solid image quality for a lens of its size
  • Budget-friendly
  • Quick and quiet autofocus
  • Very small
  • Weighs practically nothing

Cons:

  • Electronic focus ring that is hard to get a good grip on
  • Its image quality isn’t as good as Sony’s other offerings

Best Zoom Lens for Sony A6100: Sony E 16-70mm f/4 G OSS

Sony 16-70mm F4 ZA OSS
Sony 16-70mm F4 ZA OSS

The Sony E 16-70mm f/4 G OSS is the best zoom lens for APS-C E-mount Sony cameras. One of Carl Zeiss’s most flexible zoom lenses, the Vario-Tessar T* ZA OSS is also one of its most well-built and has excellent image quality to boot. Images are crisp even when shot at wide apertures and focusing performance is superb.

On the other hand, unprocessed RAW photos from this lens may have chromatic aberration (CA) in the corners, obvious (but not severe) vignetting, and some distortion. Real-world photography results in crisp photographs, especially in the center, and post-processing fixes for other issues including CA, vignetting, and distortion.

Even to its cost, the Sony 16-70mm Zeiss is an outstanding walkaround lens thanks to its small size and low weight. You may use the Sony 16-70mm lens for general photography, travel, landscapes, portraits, and more because of its versatility.

Pros:

  • Very wide focal range suitable for many photographic purposes
  • Compact size
  • Lightweight
  • Sharp image quality across all apertures
  • Fast and accurate autofocus

Cons:

  • Has some image quality issues in the corners, including chromatic aberration, distortion, and vignetting
  • The lens increases quite a bit in size when you zoom out

Best Portrait Lens for Sony A6100: Sony FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA

Sony 55mm f 1.8 ZA Lens
Sony 55mm f 1.8 ZA Lens

In spite of its age, the Sony FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA remains one of the greatest basic prime lenses for Sony’s mirrorless camera system, even if its design is older than other FE lenses. At f/1.8 and a few stops down, it has fantastic optics, with superb center sharpness and genuinely stunning corner-to-corner clarity.

The lens’ bokeh and contrast are excellent, and it does an excellent job in low-light situations. Bokeh fringing at f/1.8 is the only significant optical issue with this lens, and it doesn’t truly go away until f/5.6.

In spite of the excellent build quality, Sony’s failure to include weather sealing on the FE 55mm F/1.8 ZA hurts the lens’s attractiveness to photographers who frequently shoot outside in severe weather and want their gear to stand up to such circumstances. To make matters worse, there are no controls on the lens, which makes it difficult to make simple adjustments while shooting. Even after five years, the Sony FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA remains a superb performer, despite certain flaws. It offers excellent image quality and fast autofocus in a lightweight, high-quality package. Although it isn’t the cheapest 50mm prime lens for Sony’s FE mount, it’s still the best portrait lens for the Sony A6100.

Pros:

Best All Around Lens for Sony A6100: Sony E 16-55mm f/2.8 G

Sony 16-55mm F2.8 G Standard Zoom APS-C Lens
Sony 16-55mm F2.8 G Standard Zoom APS-C Lens

If you’re looking for a versatile lens for the Sony A6100 that pretty much does it all, consider the Sony E 16-55mm f/2.8 G. On the Sony A6100’s APS-C size sensor, the focal range is a full-frame equivalent of 24-82.5mm. That’s a very useful focal range, as it spans from wide-angle to something you can comfortably use for portraits. The constant f/2.8 aperture is nice to have as well, which gives you good low-light capabilities plus quite a bit of control over your depth of field and pleasing bokeh.

The Sony E 16-55mm f/2.8 G has great optics aside from some barrel distortion at the wide end of the lens. However, you can always correct this in post-processing.

The 16-55mm f/2.8 G has fast and quiet autofocus, which is important when you don’t want to disturb a scene.

For these reasons, it’s the best everyday lens for Sony A6100.

Pros:

  • Versatile focal length
  • Constant f/2.8 aperture
  • Nice bokeh
  • Good low light performance
  • Weather sealed

Cons:

  • It’s on the larger side
  • It’s heavier than I would like for a compact camera like the Sony a6100
  • Expensive
  • Has distortion and vignetting at 16mm

Best Travel Lens for Sony A6100: Sony E 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS

Sony 18-135mm F3.5-5.6 OSS APS-C E-Mount Zoom Lens
Sony 18-135mm F3.5-5.6 OSS APS-C E-Mount Zoom Lens

If you want a zoom lens with a versatile focal length, take a look at the Sony E 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS.

 Sony’s E 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS is an all-in-one zoom lens for APS-C cameras that is fun and relatively small. The A6100 and the 18-135mm lens work nicely together, giving you a lightweight, flexible setup that’s comfortable to carry around all day.

The 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS costs roughly $600, so it won’t break the bank, and its wide zoom range allows you to set out on your travels with just one lens.

It’s nice that in dusty or rainy conditions, this lens eliminates the need to switch out lenses because of its big focal range. However, keep in mind that it is not weather-sealed, which is unfortunate.

While there is vignetting and distortion at the wide end of its zoom range, in real-world use the 18-135mm is still a superb lens that produces beautiful images. Its focal range combined with its compact size and low weight makes it the best travel lens for the Sony A6100.

Pros:

  • Wide focal range eliminates the need to bring other lenses while traveling
  • Weighs only 325 grams
  • Relatively small in size
  • Solid image quality
  • Fast autofocus
  • Good close focusing distance

Cons:

  • No weather sealing
  • Has vignetting/distortion in the corners at the wide end of the zoom range
  • Has a variable aperture

Alternative travel lens for the Sony A6100: The Sony E 20mm f/2.8

If you really want to go as compact and lightweight as possible for your travels, the Sony E 20mm f/2.8 is a very attractive option. It’s a pancake-style lens, so it doesn’t get any smaller than this. Paired with the already compact Sony A6100, you get a combination that’s small enough to fit in a jacket pocket.

The Sony E 20mm f/2.8 has good image quality and focuses well, especially for its affordable price.

Best Macro Lens for Sony A6100: Sony 90mm f/2.8 Macro

Sony FE 90mm f 2.8-22 Macro G OSS Standard-Prime Lens
Sony FE 90mm f 2.8-22 Macro G OSS Standard-Prime Lens

The Sony 90mm f/2.8 Macro is an excellent lens for photographers who want to broaden their creative horizons. It allows you to get up close and personal with your subjects and opens up new photographic opportunities that you don’t have with other lenses.

In particular, if you’re working on commercial photographs of small objects such as jewelry, this lens is an excellent tool to have in your arsenal.

This lens lets you capture interesting images at any time of day because the macro function allows you to get so close to your subject. This gives you a small depth of field and the f/2.8 aperture lets in a lot of light, so you don’t have to wait for the best light at sunrise or sunset to capture interesting images.

This offers up new creative option and inspires creativity.

The Sony 90mm f/2.8 Macro has exceptional image quality and capabilities that allow you to make photographs that are incomparably better than those produced by other lenses. It truly has excellent sharpness and picture quality.

Anyone interested in photographing objects or subjects up close and personal should consider purchasing this lens for their full-frame Sony camera. The Sony 90mm f/2.8 Macro also has excellent autofocus accuracy, which makes it a good portrait lens as well.

Macro photography opens up a whole new universe of image-making possibilities, as well as a slew of new creative alternatives that you may not have considered previously.

This incredible lens, which allows you to get extremely near to objects while also performing admirably as a portrait lens, is an excellent choice if you want to get creative with your photography.

Pros:

  • Superb image quality
  • True 1:1 macro focusing capability
  • Fast/accurate autofocus
  • Can be used for portraits in addition to macro photography

Cons:

  • Can be difficult to use in tight spaces on APS-C cameras with its 135mm-equivalent focal length
  • Loud autofocus
  • The maximum aperture could be bigger

Alternative Macro Lenses for The Sony A6100

There are several other macro lenses that pair well with the Sony A6100.

If you shoot in places with small working distances between you and your macro subjects, a great option is the Sony FE 50mm F/2.8 Macro. This lens has the exceptional image quality and is smaller and lighter than the 90mm Sony. Although it can’t capture details quite as minuscule as the Sony 90mm, it does have a more comfortable working distance and is still a 1:1 lens.

Another lens worth considering if you don’t mind having only manual focus is the Voigtlander MACRO APO-LANTHAR 65mm F2 Aspherical Macro Lens. This lens is built like a tank and has stellar image quality. Just keep in mind that you have to be more slow and methodical when using this lens, as it’s manual focus only.

Best Landscape Lens for Sony A6100: Sony 12-24mm f/4 G

Sony - FE 12-24mm F4 G Wide-Angle Zoom Lens
Sony – FE 12-24mm F4 G Wide-Angle Zoom Lens

The Sony 12-24mm f/4 G is an amazing ultra-ultrawide lens with a maximum aperture of f/4. Because of its stunning image quality, it’s the best landscape lens for the Sony A6100. This is a workhorse lens for landscape photography when you want to produce wide, sweeping, dramatic vistas.

Of course, you can use it for any type of photography aside from landscape photography when you need an ultra-wide-angle, such as for interior photography, real estate listings, and architectural photography.

The Sony 12-24mm f/4 G isn’t just an exceptionally wide-angle lens for Sony, it’s truly one of the best performing wide-angle lenses of any lens manufacturer.

Although it is not one of Sony’s G Master lenses, the Sony FE 12-24mm f/4 G is a high-performance lens that allows for extremely wide-angle photography, giving Sony’s and it gave new life to Sony’s offerings when they introduced it.

Given the wide range of views provided by the Sony FE 12-24mm f/4 G, the lens’ optical performance is quite impressive. Despite its great image quality, unfortunately, it can’t accommodate typical filter holders on the front, so you have to use more custom filter holders that are more expensive.

Pros:

  • Excellent image quality
  • Very sharp at all apertures, even wide open at f/4
  • Fast and quiet autofocus
  • Weather sealed

Cons:

  • Requires non-traditional filter thread system

Best Sigma Lens for Sony A6100: Sigma 24-70 f/2.8 DG DN Art

Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 DG DN Art for Sony E Lens
Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 DG DN Art for Sony E Lens

Sigma makes some very good lenses and is one of the most respected third-party lens manufacturers today. Some of their lenses arguably surpass certain camera manufacturers’ own lenses. When you couple that with the fact that, often times, their lenses are more affordable, it makes them very appealing.

It’s a tough decision, but if you’re looking for the best Sigma lens for the Sony A6100, that title probably goes to the Sigma 24-70 f/2.8, DG DN Art. Sigma has been doing an incredible job with their Art-series lenses over the past several years and this lens is no exception.

The build quality and handling of Sigma’s 24-70mm Art lens for Sony cameras are of the highest caliber. Every aspect of the camera’s operation, from its buttery smooth zoom and focus rings to the many buttons and switches to the overall feel and handling, has been meticulously thought out and polished. The autofocus system is lightning fast, deadly accurate, and nearly noiseless.

However, it is not optically flawless, as is the case with many new lenses for mirrorless cameras, and it makes use of in-camera adjustments for issues like distortion and vignetting to compensate. However, in order to achieve top performance, practically all zoom lenses will need some degree of in-camera correction.

What is actually important is that Sigma’s new 24-70mm Art E-mount lens will give you excellent results and is a great value for the money.

Few lenses are as good of a value as the 24-70mm F2.8 lens, and the Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 DN ART is among the most competent lenses of its sort. It offers excellent optical performance across the zoom range, as well as pleasing bokeh, and it also has fast and precise autofocus. There are just a few types of photography that can’t be covered with a lens of this focal length.

One of these lenses’ weaknesses is its flare. If you want to avoid a lot of flare when using this lens, you need to be mindful of your framing while shooting backlit subjects.

Pros:

  • Great build quality
  • Nice handling
  • Good optical design and image quality
  • Very fast and silent autofocus
  • Versatile 36-105mm focal length on the Sony A6100

Cons:

  • Doesn’t handle flare very well
  • Big and heavy
  • Has distortion and vignetting before post-processing

Best Lens for Sony A6100 for Video: Sony E 18-105mm f/4

Sony 18-105mm F4 G OSS
Sony 18-105mm F4 G OSS

Despite the fact that it is an older lens, it is still one of the best video lenses on the market for your Sony A6100 camera. Everything you’d expect from a video lens, like optical image stabilization and a wide zoom range, are included. Perhaps the most impressive feature is that it has an internal zoom barrel that doesn’t expand outward when zooming in or out, making it ideal for use with anything that could potentially get in the way, such as a gimbal, stabilizer, or microphone.

In spite of the fact that the lens is not as sharp as the other zoom lenses, it is doubtful that you will notice any difference when shooting videos; in fact, all of the capabilities that come with the lens will be far more beneficial to you than having a little sharper lens in this situation.

Furthermore, it is quite inexpensive.

A great thing about the Sony E 18-105mm f/4 for video is that it’s small and light, which makes it not so painful if you have to handhold it for an extended period of time. On the other hand, though, Sony was able to keep the size and weight to a minimum by designing its maximum aperture to be f/4. f/4 isn’t terrible, but it is more limiting when it comes to photographing in low light or if you want a really shallow depth of field.

However, its image stabilization and versatile focal range make it a really good lens for video. If you’re searching for a video lens for your Sony A6100, this is undoubtedly one of the best video lenses for Sony A6100 cameras. best sony e mount lenses for video

 Pros:

  • Versatile zoom range
  • Good image quality
  • Image stabilization
  • Value
  • Strong autofocus performance
  • Internal focusing
  • Silent autofocus
  • Durable build quality

Cons:

  • Even with its f/4 aperture, its size and weight may be a concern
  • Soft corners

Verdict

If you want the absolute best lens for the Sony A6100, you can’t go wrong with the Sony E 16-55mm f/2.8 G. It’s just incredibly versatile and you can do almost anything with it. It’s got fast and accurate autofocus and a wide f/2.8 aperture for solid low light performance and bokeh.

If you need the best lens for the Sony A6100 for more specific purposes, checkout these lenses:

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AUTHOR
Brandon Ballweg is a photographer based in Kansas City. He has shot landscape photography, wedding photography, portrait photography, and more, but his real passion is street photography. He created composeclick.com to connect with and help other photographers.

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