Best Lens For Wedding Photography

Best Lens For Wedding Photography

Need the best lens for wedding photography that is universal? Or you want to have several lenses for portrait, group, and lifestyle photos? What lenses do professional wedding photographers use? Do you need a macro lens for wedding? Let’s answer these and other questions to make the process of buying a new wedding photography lens clear for everyone.

best lens for wedding photography

Best Lens For Wedding Photography

best lens for wedding photography

Even having the best camera for wedding photography for about $2500 can’t guarantee beautiful and breathtaking wedding photos with magical bokeh. It’s all about lenses you use. Today I’ll tell you what lenses I use (recommend to use) for specific purposes as photographic portraits (preparation, reception, ceremony), group photos, the photos of decoration and rings, and lifestyle images. I’ll be walking through the process in which my mind works in relation to what wedding photography gear I’m carrying with me.

Universal Zoom Lenses

These lenses are very popular among beginning wedding photographers as having only one zoom lens, you can “have” several focal lengths, sometimes even a very wide diapason. But, unfortunately, here comes a big minus – too low aperture ratio. It can cause problems while shoting not only indoors, but even outdoors on a cloudy day. Even the most expensive zoom lenses rarely surpass f/2.8 value. Such lenses are typically used in combination with any fix lens to photograph portraits. The zoom lens is good for everything else, for example, group and indoor shots etc.


1. Sigma 85mm f/1.4 Art

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • High sharpness across the frame
  • Working aperture is f/1.4
  • Fast and accurate focus
  • High micro and general contras
  • High backlight resistance
  • Reasonable price
Cons-
  • Not found
 

A well thought-out construction, excellent design, and great optical characteristics make the lens truly high-quality. The lens pleasantly surprises with the high accuracy of focusing in low light conditions. In all the pictures I took there are almost no frames with blunders. Moreover, the accuracy depends on the selected system, so Nikon D750 will give almost 100% of the focus. The picture has beautiful bokeh, inherent in the entire Art series. The contrast is high, both when shooting outdoors and indoors. Sigma 85mm ART is not afraid of the backlight, and the photos do not lose their color saturation and contrast. Thanks to the high aperture and long focal length, it can also be successfully used for reportage shootings. The exact and fast focus will please everybody, who shoots sports events, and those, who have chosen children and wedding photography as their profession. Yes, it is heavier than other portrait lenses, but in this case, we are talking about quality. The image quality really corresponds to the Art line. Moreover, you feel that the construction is so reliable that it can be intensively used for many years and it will not break.

best canon lens for low light wedding photography Photographed with Sigma 85mm f/1.4 Art

2. Nikon 24-70mm f2.8 VR

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Silent and quick AF
  • Great sharpness
  • Appealing design
  • Mild bokeh
  • Practical and efficient VR
Cons-
  • Some edge CA
  • No weather protection
  • Flare in the light
 

Nikon claims that their new noiseless ultrasonic motor speed (SWM) is 1.5 times higher than the f/2.8G motor version. Indeed, the first attempts to focus and the speed of focusing were pleasantly impressive. The lens showed itself well in the evening shooting which gives the opportunity to check both a new focus system and the reliability of the stabilizer. Namely, the stabilizer makes this lens different from the previous model. At a shutter speed of only 1/6, the photo in the center of focus will be stable, even in the evening. If you wonder what lens to use for wedding ceremony, consider this one. It is the dream of any photographer. The lens provides the optimized view angle for both indoor and outdoor shooting. Therefore, photographers can shoot the wedding from the beginning till the end without changing the lens. Nikon 24-70mm f2.8 VR became even longer (154,4 mm vs 133 mm of the forerunner) and heavier (2.36 lb vs 1.99 lb), and can be named the largest medium focal length product from Nikon Co. View more best Nikon lenses for weddings.

best nikon lens for wedding photography Photographed with Nikon 24-70mm f2.8 VR

3. Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Sharp details
  • Exceptional sharpness with aperture f/2.8
  • Precise and fast autofocus
  • Near-complete absence of chromatic aberrations
  • Keeps the backlight well
  • Dust and moisture protection
  • Convenient rings of focus
Cons-
  • Heavy
  • High price
 

This lens is easy to use, it is in demand among professionals primarily because of high image quality and convenience, which provides an optimal set of focal lengths, suitable for the vast majority of footage. It is the first time when a lens speed zoom with almost perfect sharpness at open apertures and stunning details appeared on the market. Add an accurate and fast autofocus (that won't get distracted even by the dim light), ergonomic build, moisture, and dust protection and you'll get the perfect zoom. Actually, Sony developers managed to achieve both top-notch technical characteristics and pleasant bokeh. The lens is considered to be the best Sony lens for wedding photography for all situations. I believe the lens is an excellent "workhorse" for dynamic journalistic wedding photography fans.

best sony lens for wedding photography Photographed with Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM

4. Tamron AF SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USD

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Qualitative materials and build
  • Fast and quiet USD autofocus motor
  • Excellent sharpness starting with F2.8, in the diapason of 24 to 50mm across the frame field
  • Low level of chromatic aberrations at all focal lengths and apertures
  • 5-years warranty 
  • A lower price in comparison with the main competitors
Cons-
  • Quite heavy
  • Vignetting and distortion at 24 mm to F2.8
  • You need to use expensive 82-mm filters
 

The lens is an appropriate variant for photographers, who need a high-quality rapid full-frame lens of 24-70mm diapason on a budget. High optical characteristics, nice color rendering, an optical stabilizer, drip-proof build and 5-year warranty in combination with an affordable price makes it an appealing option and one of the best budget wedding lenses. I think Tamron developers tried to create a high-quality lens that may compete with professional models and meet the expectations of demanding photo enthusiasts.

best lens for wedding photography Photographed with Tamron AF SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USD

5. Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 OS Art

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Sufficient sharpness in the center of the shot
  • Fast and precise focus
  • High micro- and total contrast
  • High resistance to backlight
  • Great performance of a stabilizer
  • Low level of chromatic aberrations
  • Small vignetting at 24 mm
Cons-
  • Heavy
  • A filter of a large diameter (82 mm) is required
  • A noisy focus in a video mode
 

It is a remarkable universal rapid zoom lens for Canon EF full-frame SLR cameras and the best lens to use for wedding photography. The lens is also used with APS-C models, where it gives a focal length diapason of 38.4-112mm. For low light conditions, the maximum aperture of f/2.8 is perfect. It also provides good focus control when using techniques of shallow sharpness depth. The manufacturers used an elaborate optical design, which includes three glass SLD lenses and four aspherical lenses to reduce monochromatic and spherical aberrations for greater image clarity and sharpness. Special multi-layer lens coating is used to suppress flares and halos to get accurate color rendering and high contrast. The aperture consists of nine blades, which gives an opportunity to get a smooth and pleasant bokeh quality on wedding portraits.

best lens for outdoor wedding photography Photographed with Sigma 24-70 f/2.8 OS Art

Best Lens For Wedding Portrait

Wedding portraits is the most frequent photos you take on the wedding ceremony, and therefore it requires more quality lenses than other photos. You have two options – shoot with the fixed lens and or use a zoom model. Most photographers are satisfied with the image quality of zoom lenses, but it’s still inferior to the fixed ones. Many zooms are equipped with a variable maximum aperture that can be lowered to F/5.6 at the long end of the zoom range. This increases the depth of the sharply depicted space, which makes it difficult to separate the subject from the background, and the blurred backdrop is one of the main features of the portraits. In such cases, fixed lenses offer aperture from F/1.4 to F/1.8. The following list includes the lenses, which are great for half-length portraits.


6. Canon 50mm f/1.2L

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • High lens speed
  • Reliable assembly
  • Very intense background blurring
  • Unique picture
  • Soft blurring at the open aperture
  • High sharpness at closed apertures
Cons-
  • Relatively low autofocus speed
  • Exactingness to camera autofocus
  • Not too high detail under f/2.8
  • Strong vignetting
 

If you try to understand what lens to use for wedding ceremony, have a look at this creative lens with a unique picture. It can be used for shooting half-length portraits of the bride or groom as well as full-length ones with a very nice soft effect and bokeh. Canon EF 50mm f/1.2L USM can create a beautiful background out of literally nothing, just blurring a dull and uninteresting backdrop. The low focusing speed, as well as the softness of the image at open apertures, doesn’t make it applicable in reportage and any other dynamic shooting. F/1.2 lens speed is the maximum in the modern Canon lenses line. The lens is large and heavy, because of the large weight of the glass inside. The resolution is low at the edges, but only at open aperture. The situation is much better at 2.0, and the resolution is high across the entire image field at 2.8 aperture.

best lens for wedding photography canon Photographed with Canon 50mm f/1.2L

7. Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G

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Pros+
  • Universality
  • Can work as a portrait lens on crop cameras
  • High sharpness over f/2.8
  • Strong and beautiful background blur
  • Built-in autofocus motor
  • Low distortion level
Cons-
  • Noticeable vignetting at an open aperture
  • Not too sharp at the open aperture
 

Nikon 50/1.8G is a high-aperture autofocus lens from Nikon. This lens is one of the most affordable on the market. Lightweight and compact 50mm standard lens. It has a large f/1.8 lens speed, which is suitable for shooting in low light conditions and provides a bright image in the viewfinder. A great choice for taking portraits at the wedding party. The only weak point of this lens is the distortion. However, more expensive models have some visible distortions as well. As for me, it is the best lens for outdoor wedding photography because it works great even in challenging lighting conditions as rain/fog/snow. In comparison with other 50 mm lenses, this one can boast of reasonable price/performance ratio.

best lens for wedding photography nikon Photographed with Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G

8. Sony 55mm f/1.8 OSS

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Pros+
  • High sharpness even at an open aperture
  • Equal sharpness across the frame area
  • Soft bokeh
  • It does not lose contrast in back lighting
  • Compact size and light weight
  • Fast and silent autofocus
Cons-
  • Noticeable vignetting at an open aperture
  • Slight chromatic aberrations at an open aperture
  • No autofocus switch on the body
 

The lens is designed for Sony full-frame mirrorless cameras. There is no optical stabilizer. Autofocus speed is very fast, and it feels like it is almost on the level with the best reportage zoom lenses. It has excellent accuracy and sharpness, and everything is fine even at an open aperture. However, there were situations when the lens did not find the object immediately under medium lighting. There are not so many products with such a lens speed and focal length on the modern photo market. It’s the best Sony lens for wedding photography, which provides excellent detail over the entire area of the frame at an open aperture even on a 42-megapixel matrix. Its high sharpness is combined with soft and plastic bokeh. The only disadvantage about this lens is a noticeable vignetting and chromatic aberrations at the open aperture. However, they do not significantly influence the image quality.

best sony lens for wedding photography Photographed with Sony 55mm f/1.8 OSS

9. Tamron SP 45mm F/1.8 Di VC USD

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Pros+
  • Excellent sharpness across the entire area of the frame starting with F1.8
  • Great sharpness from F5.6 to F14
  • Light weight and size for a lens with such a high resolution
  • Well-adjusted vignetting
  • Great ergonomics
  • Effective optical stabilizer
  • Relatively small weight and size
  • Protection from dust and moisture
Cons-
  • Chromatic aberrations in the blur zone at apertures to F2.8
  • Slow focus in low light
 

This lens with a rare combination of focal length and luminosity was the only one of a kind until 2017. Manufacturers combined relatively high f/1.8 lens speed and optical stabilization system. This allows you to forget about the flash and shoot with a camera in your hands in natural light and even at dusk at acceptable ISO. This is also probably the sharpest lens in its class. It will produce perfect image detail from F1.8. It is also equipped with a built-in stabilizer in order to achieve sharp pictures. Tamron SP 45mm F1.8 Di VC USD can be definitely recommended to all fans of high sharpness, high-quality images and comfort use. This lens will be interesting to both professionals and amateurs, and its price makes it affordable for a sufficiently wide range of photographers.

best lens to use for wedding photography Photographed with Tamron SP 45mm F/1.8 Di VC USD

10. Sigma 50mm F/1.4 DG HSM ART

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Pros+
  • Very sharp even on the open diaphragm
  • Individual bokeh
  • High-quality colors
  • Sharp, fast and accurate autofocus
Cons-
  • Too expensive
  • Problems with white balance
 

This model takes the first place in my 50 mm lenses list and is in a high position among all tested and familiar lenses. It has excellent sharpness, and there is no difference between the center and the edges of the frame. There is almost no distortion, low chromatic aberrations and low vignetting. In many ways, this lens is better than Canon 50/1.2L, but it is inferior in size and, most importantly, in the picture quality. Sigma has peculiar bokeh, which is softer than in L model in the previous version, but here we can see that it is more often sharper. At an open aperture, it gives such a sharpness that is difficult to find in its competitors. That’s why I would recommend this lens primarily to all wedding and event photographers. Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM Art will help you forget about bad lighting, and allow you to get great pictures.

best camera lens for wedding photography Photographed with Sigma 50mm F/1.4 DG HSM ART

Best Lens for Lifestyle Photography

In addition to powerful and budget wedding lenses, this list also includes portrait models, but only those that are no longer suitable for half-length portraits. These are the lenses that are ideal for shoulder-length portraits. This is the most expensive lens segment (except for “crazy” telephoto lenses), but usually, their quality will allow you to get very sharp and saturated portraits, with good bokeh. These lenses will be the most suitable for lifestyle photography, where you can single out each guest among other people, from the room or nature. Such pictures are particularly vivid, as they are not posed.


11. Canon 85mm f/1.2 II

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Pros+
  • One of the best bokeh pictures
  • Great color rendering
  • Excellent sharpness, especially in the center of the frame, starting with the minimum aperture
Cons-
  • Quite strong chromatic aberration
  • The lens body is quite vulnerable
  • There is no dust and moisture protection
 

This professional portrait lens became a dream of many Canon fans after its release because it is characterized by a unique picture quality and a magnificent bokeh. This is an extremely important characteristic in portrait photography and event shooting. However, photographers complained about visible chromatic aberrations, slow AF, and low sharpness. Having released the update, Canon established a new level of quality. The quality of the picture itself has not improved significantly, but autofocus has become much better, and there is also optical image stabilization. Even in the dark, the lens shows the skin tone great. There is glare from contrast sources, which evens out the illumination of the skin. Still, the lens isn’t durable enough and it has quite a large weight.

best lens for candid wedding photography Photographed with Canon 85mm f/1.2 II

12. Nikon 85mm f/1.8

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Reliable assembly
  • Good balancing for most cameras (the lens does not outweigh the camera)
  • Pleasant color rendering
  • High sharpness
  • Good work in the backlight
Cons-
  • No stabilizer
  • Chromatic aberration
 

If you need to get high-quality photos at wedding photo session, it’s a must-have lens in your arsenal. This is a simple model, without expensive ED and aspherical elements that significantly increase the price of lens production. Yet this lens is one of the sharpest, among all 85 mm fixes that I have ever used. The sharpness is especially great in the cameras without an anti-aliasing filter, like D810. There is no lens distortion, and 85mm f/1.8G is sharp across the entire frame. The sharpness is almost equal from the center to the edges of the frame, which is very important for portrait and studio shooting. However, you should check that you have the focus exactly where you need it at a fully open aperture. Bokeh is not bad, though it is not perfect as well. Therefore, if you want the background to be blurred even more, you'd better take 85mm f/1.4G. Still, it isn’t the best Nikon lens for wedding photography and quick reportage shooting, because you may need to set autofocus for a long time. In difficult lighting conditions, you may also notice chromatic aberrations.

best nikon lens for wedding photography Photographed with Canon 85mm f/1.2 II

13. Sony FE 85mm f/1.8

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • High sharpness even at the open aperture
  • Original, but nice looking bokeh
  • Fast autofocus
  • The programmable button on the body
  • Metal case
Cons-
  • Chromatic aberrations can be visible in back lighting
 

The lens was released in 2017 and had all the chances to become a bestseller in the Sony Alpha system. This is the most accessible brand portrait lens of the E bayonet. The lens appeared to be very sharp, and it is not a classic representative of modern portrait lenses with an ideal and boring bokeh. The blurring of this lens has some formal “flaws” in the form of light bokeh twisting, a bit harsh glare than other portrait lenses have. Nevertheless, this slight non-perfection gives SEL85F18 its character and singularity. This is a truly creative lens, in which bokeh is not just a perfect blur, but an expressive tool. Particularly interesting is the focus testing at a wide open aperture. So, the lens is sometimes focused with a small front-focus, although this is not critical, and the focus shift is often smoothed by an increased depth of field. The only drawback of such best Sony lens for wedding photography is the tendency to reduce the contrast when shooting against the light. It is rather annoying, but it depends on the way you shoot, and it should not affect your decision to buy it. This lens is suitable for full-frame mirrorless cameras of A7 series and it is compatible with models with an APS-C format matrix.

best sony lens for wedding photography Photographed with Sony FE 85mm f/1.8

14. Tamron SP 85mm F/1.8

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Highly effective stabilizer
  • Waterproof construction
  • Even sharpness across the frame field
  • Very low level of chromatic aberration
  • Excellent backlight resistance and glare protection
Cons-
  • A small stroke of the focus ring
  • High price for such a combination of lens speed and focal length
  • Focus point shift while closing aperture (Focus-Shift)
 

The lens is designed specifically for portrait photography. The lens picture, like in the rest of the portraits lenses, doesn’t differ by a strong micro-contrast at an open aperture, but the detail is very high and uniform. The developers created the optical scheme suitable for multi-megapixel cameras.

This lens doesn’t feature automatic aberrations correction either in cameras or in most RAW converters, but there is nothing to correct because they are almost absent. The distortion is small and even vignetting, which is noticeable at an open diaphragm, doesn’t interfere with the work. The lens speed is not the highest according to the standards of portrait optics, but it is enough for convenient work. You can blur everything around the eyes on close-up shots. Autofocus works very quickly, especially for a portrait lens. Undoubtedly, Tamron 85/1.8 Di VC USD with its optical perfection, the stabilizer work, and moisture protection will be the best lens for wedding photography or portraits, especially for a camera that has a great number of megapixels.

what lens to use for wedding ceremony Photographed with Tamron SP 85mm F/1.8

15. Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L II

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Pros+
  • Flexible multitasking lens
  • Aperture f/2.8
  • Sharp
  • Contrast and color may be compared with the fix lenses' quality
Cons-
  • More expensive than any other 24-70mm lens on the market
  • 82 mm filter
 
 

It is a good universal Canon wedding lens to photograph almost in all light conditions. Pictures taken with this lens show high quality. Overpaying almost twice for an additional aperture step isn't an option for everyone, especially since the photo quality is the same. Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM is darker and cheaper, but has a stabilizer and a large range of focal lengths. That's why it isn’t the best Canon lens for low light wedding photography, this model is designed primarily for the photographers, who really care about the maximum aperture.

The first 24-70 is a high-quality zoom lens. The second 24-70 is a zoom lens which shoots as a fix one, according to all parameters. The color rendering is saturated and contrast. At f/2.8, the lens is sharp in the entire zoom diapason and has a low distortion level. Vignetting is visible only at an open aperture, flare protection is at a high level.

best canon lens for portraits and wedding photography Photographed with Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L II

Best Wide-Angle Lens for Wedding Photography

Wide-angle lenses for wedding photography should be treated with extreme caution because most of the lenses of this type have geometric distortions, which are unacceptable for weddings. Best lens for wedding photography is the one that doesn't have such distortion. Wide-angle lenses are used to show not only the main object in a photo but also a delightful background.


16. Canon 35mm f/1.4 L USM

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • High sharpness with an open aperture
  • Smooth and flexible picture
  • Small minimum focusing distance
  • Universal focal length for any camera type
  • High focusing speed
  • Steady performance in the backlight
Cons-
  • Strong chromatic aberrations up to f/2.8
  • Vignetting up to f/2.8
  • Considerable weight and size
 

The lens is a rare combination of f/1.4 lens speed, highest sharpness at an open aperture and smooth flexible pattern. Such a set of characteristics for a 35mm full-frame lens is quite rare. The lens has other unquestionable advantages: fast autofocus for this class of optics, small minimum focusing distance. But there are also some disadvantages: at open apertures, the lens is prone to chromatic aberrations that appear in the form of purple stripes and halos. At f/1.4, vignetting is visible. The lens belongs to the line of professional optics and differs from the younger version with the f/2 technically improved build, which has advanced optics. The lens speed is a whole step above, but it is three times more expensive, half longer and weighs twice as much. This lens is indispensable for highly artistic tasks when the background blur pattern becomes an important part of the composition.

35mm and 85mm for wedding Photographed with Canon 35mm f/1.4 L USM

17. Nikon AF-S 35mm f/1.8 G ED

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Pretty sharp with f/1.8
  • Very low price
  • Quality build, metal lens bayonet
  • Works very quietly
Cons-
  • Autofocus often misses the object
 

It is a great full-frame 35mm lens with excellent optical quality, good contrast, and high autofocus speed (one of Nikon's fastest fix lenses). The lens remains rather compact and light, that's why it is the best Nikon wide angle lens for wedding photography. Vignetting and distortion are not significant. The ED letters don’t really matter, as the lens chromatic aberrations are quite strong. If you want an affordable full-frame 35mm lens and you shoot a lot at a closed aperture (f/4 and below), you will definitely like it. It seems that the fix with such focal length should be in the bag of every novice photographer and even an advanced enthusiast. It has very fast focusing, is sharp, lightweight, compact and is not expensive.

best lens for wedding photography nikon Photographed with Nikon AF-S 35mm f/1.8 G ED

18. Sony 16-35mm f/2.8

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Sharp details at an open aperture
  • Very low chromatic aberrations level
  • Good performance in the backlight
  • Soft background blurring
  • Low geometric distortion level
  • Dust and moisture protection
  • A programmed button on the body
  • Quick and almost silent autofocus
Cons-
  • Vignetting at an open aperture
  • Minor chromatic aberrations in RAW in some converters
  • High price
 

Sony FE 16-35mm F2.8 GM is another good portrait lend from the G Master Sony lineup. Sharp with an open aperture, with low levels of chromatic aberration and geometric distortion, with a pleasant blurring effect on the background. The lens has a fast and silent autofocus, equipped with a dust- and waterproof body. Talking about its minuses, this is a little vignetting on the open diaphragm. However, both vignetting and geometric distortions (yes, they also exist, but are very weakly expressed) are easily removed with one click in the RAW converter without damaging the image quality. Only the price can scare the photographer away from buying this wonderful lens.

best sony lens for wedding photography Photographed with Sony 16-35mm f/2.8

19. Tamron 15-30mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Excellent shots with the backlight
  • High-speed and accuracy of AF autofocus
  • VC image stabilization system ensures sharp images in any shooting conditions 
  • Filter holder in the rear part of the lens 
  • Moisture-proof build
Cons-
  • Very heavy
  • High price
 

It is a rapid ultra wide-angle lens with variable focal length for SLR cameras. The lens is made very reliably, but because of a considerable size, it is the largest in the class. Rubberized rings move smoothly, zoom works easily, and accurately, the refocusing is soft, without any distortion. The lens hood is not removable, which affects the dimensions. It is one of the heaviest lenses (not narrow-angle ones) I have ever used. The classic Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L USM weighs 950 grams. The built-in Dual MPU microprocessor unit has significantly increased the speed and accuracy of the autofocusing together with the efficiency of the image stabilization system. This new generation lens with first-class optics and a wide variety of functions is the best camera lens for wedding photography that will also satisfy any demands.

best wide angle lens for wedding photography Photographed with Tamron 15-30mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2

20. Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Fast autofocus
  • No moving parts
  • No distortion and aberration
  • Saturated color of a picture
Cons-
  • Insufficient lens speed
  • Poor sharpness
 

If you need the best lens for wedding photography and want to get a wide-angle one, but not a fisheye, with minimum distortion, this is an excellent option. The lens is unique because(at the moment of purchase) such focal length for full-frame cameras didn't exist. The lens is heavy but not large, and it is an advantage. Comparing with Tokina AT-x 16-28 mm f/2.8, which doesn't fit in any bag, this one is of a compact size. There are certain disadvantages, concerning sharpness, which is absent at an open aperture and the corners are fuzzy at f/8. At 12 mm, if you don't remove the built-in blend, you’ll get a very strong vignetting. If you shoot with crop matrix, you don’t need to remove the blend. The lens is recommended for indoor shooting, but you will need to raise the ISO to get enough lens speed.

Best Macro Lens for Wedding Photography

A macro lens isn't the type of lenses that you must have if you want to shoot a wedding ceremony. Macro wedding shooting isn't very common because good pictures of rings or any small decorations can be taken even with the usual 24-70mm lens. After all, if you have a macro lens, in any case, it doesn't limit the scope of its usage, but, on the contrary, only expands it: your portraits will be much sharper.

best wide angle lens for wedding photography Photographed with Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG

21. Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Very sharp
  • 3-position focal length switch: full, 0.5 m-infinity and 0.3-0.5m
  • Dust and moisture protection
  • Stabilizer
  • Apart from macro, you can shoot marvelous portraits
Cons-
  • At a full frame, more focal length is needed
 

It is a great macro lens that belongs to Canon lens L-series. Therefore, you may expect a good image and build quality. It is the first macro Canon lens with the image stabilization system. This system allows compensating different types of blurs. The stabilizer works really well, especially in the diapason from infinity to 0.5 m. It is truly the best lens for wedding photography, which can also be used for portraits. The picture is brighter than with non-L models. The aperture and focal length have good micro contrast, very beautiful bokeh and the accuracy of the geometry over the entire frame field. There are almost no chromatic aberrations, which is sometimes considered “acceptable" even with more expensive lenses.

best camera lens for wedding photography Photographed with Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro

22. Nikon 105mm f/2.8 VR Macro

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Pros+
  • The world's first macro lens with image stabilization system (VR II)
  • No retractable/rotating parts
  • High picture quality
Cons-
  • Quite massive and heavy
  • The front lens is not recessed
  • A small focusing operative distance
 

It is an expensive and professional device designed to produce photos of the highest quality. It is also the best Nikon macro lens for wedding photography.

It is a unique medium telephoto lens to shoot small objects and now the only one fix focus macro lens with optical stabilization. This is the lens, which uses vibration reduction (VR) in macro photography, provides images with maximum optical quality and resolution for both digital and SLR cameras. The built-in optical stabilization provides up to four additional exposure stages. The pleasant structure of blurring areas makes it perfect not only for macro photography but also for portraits and reportage.

best nikon macro lens for wedding photography Photographed with Nikon 105mm f/2.8 VR Macro

23. Sony 90mm f/2.8 Macro G OSS

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Dust and moisture protection
  • Lock-on focus button in continuous shooting mode
  • Three-position limiter of autofocus distances
  • Exceptional sharpness with aperture f/2.8
  • High-quality optical stabilizer work
  • Excellent operation with the backlight
Cons-
  • Not very accurate autofocus work in macro photography
  • The bokeh isn't always perfect
 

The lens belongs to G-series, which means that we deal with a high-end lens. Before G Master lenses appeared on the market in 2016, G series from Sony was considered to be the best. Despite a certain specialization (macro photography), the lens can have a more universal application, for example, in still-life photography, when you need to be more attentive with small details. That's why it can also be called the best Sony lens for wedding photography. Conveniently, the lens can be recommended to shoot reportages and other footage. The focal distances limiter easily turns the macro lens into a usual 100-mm fix with lens f/2.8 speed and excellent sharpness at an open aperture. Lens bokeh is surely inferior to the real portrait optics: in the contrast compositions you may get contrasting flare, and at partly closed diaphragm – the effect of the rings. However, in the majority of cases, the blur area looks smooth and pleasant enough. When shooting in macro mode, the background looks the most advantageous. In general, the lens is known for a very beautiful macro lens picture.

best lens to use for wedding photography Photographed with Sony 90mm f/2.8 Macro G OSS

24. Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di VC USD Macro

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Qualitative build 
  • Image stabilizer with a compensation of up to 4 steps
  • Scale 1:1 in macro photography
  • Limitation of focusing diapason for three different shooting situations
  • The length isn't changed while focusing
  • Perfect for full-frame portraits 
  • Low level of chromatic aberrations at all aperture values
  • Kit lens hood
  • 9-blade aperture
Cons-
  • Slightly "nervous" bokeh
 

You can immediately achieve great sharpness in the center at an open aperture at F2.8, which is typical for Pro macro lenses. The peak of resolution falls on F4. In the center of the shot, the lens may exceed the sensor limit in some camera models. The edges of the shot are very sharp, though they aren't as good. At F5.6, the maximum level of even detailization is achieved all over the frame field. It may be used as a portrait lens or one lens for wedding photography, as well as a lightweight and high-quality telephoto lens.

Unlike the previous version, the lens is protected not only from moisture but also from dust. It has a more functional image stabilizer and a rather fast, silent ultrasonic autofocus. All this available at a great price: the new lens costs practically the same as the forerunner.

what lens to use for wedding ceremony Photographed with Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di VC USD Macro

25. Sigma AF 105mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro

best lens for wedding photography View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Built-in image stabilization 
  • Exceptional OOF (out of focus) areas
  • The whole image has a stable high resolution
  • Low levels of vignetting, distortion and chromatic aberrations
Cons-
  • High price
 

It is a stable version of the macro lens with an ultrasonic motor of autofocus drive and the best lens for wedding photography. A rapid telephoto lens of professional EX line was specifically designed for digital cameras with a full-size sensor. It allows macro shooting at 1:1scale and is equipped with OS optical stabilization system and HSM ultrasonic autofocus. The lens has no visible problems with extensional chromatic aberration. The autofocus is quiet and accurate enough, but noticeably slower than the ones from its competitors. Thanks to the ultra-low dispersion lenses (SLD), the model has corrected distortion and aberrations. Multi-layer lens coating of optical elements effectively eliminates unwanted flare and re-reflections, increasing the natural contrast of the image.

best lens to use for wedding photography Photographed with Sigma AF 105mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro

Top 25 Best Lenses for Wedding Photography

Image Lens Features  
best lens for wedding photography
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 Art
OUR CHOICE
  • 85 mm
  • f/1.4
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best lens for wedding photography
Canon 50mm f/1.2L
BEST PORTRAIT
  • 50 mm
  • f/1.2L
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best lens for wedding photography
Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM      
BEST ZOOM
  • 24-70 mm
  • f/2.8
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best lens for wedding photography
Canon 35mm f/1.4 L USM
BEST WIDE – ANGLE
  • 35 mm
  • f/1.4L
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best lens for wedding photography
Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 OS Art
  • 24-70 mm
  • f/2.8 OS
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best lens for wedding photography
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G
  • 50 mm
  • f/1.8G
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best lens for wedding photography
Sony 55mm f/1.8 OSS
  • 55 mm
  • f/1.8 OSS
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best lens for wedding photography
Tamron SP 45mm F/1.8 Di VC USD
  • 45 mm
  • f/1.8
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Sigma 50mm F/1.4 DG HSM ART
  • 50 mm
  • f/1.4
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Canon 85mm f/1.2L II
  • 85 mm
  • f/1.2L
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Nikon 85mm f/1.8
  • 85 mm
  • f/1.8
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Sony FE 85mm f/1.8
  • 85 mm
  • f/1.8
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Tamron SP 85mm f/1.8
  • 85 mm
  • f/1.8
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Nikon AF-S 35mm f/1.8 G ED
  • 35 mm
  • f/1.8
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Sony 16-35mm f/2.8
  • 16-35 mm
  • f/2.8
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best lens for wedding photography
Tamron 15-30mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2
  • 15-30 mm
  • f/2.8
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best lens for wedding photography
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG
  • 12-24 mm
  • f/4.5-5.6
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best lens for wedding photography
Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L II
  • 24-70 mm
  • f/2.8L
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best lens for wedding photography
Nikon 24-70mm f2.8 VR
  • 24-70 mm
  • f/2.8
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Tamron AF SP 24-70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD
  • 24-70 mm
  • f/2.8
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro
  • 100 mm
  • f/2.8L
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Nikon 105mm f/2.8 VR Macro
  • mm
  • f/2.8
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Sony 90mm f/2.8 Macro G OSS
  • 90 mm
  • f/2.8
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di VC USD Macro
  • 90 mm
  • f/2.8
Check PRICE
best lens for wedding photography
Sigma AF 105mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro
  • 105 mm
  • f/2.8
Check PRICE

How to Choose the Best Lens for Wedding Photography?

Choosing a lens isn’t easier than choosing a new camera body. You watch videos on YouTube, read articles, compare photos and the principle “the more expensive the lens is, the better it works” isn’t reasonable here. You should clearly understand which lens you need, what do you want from it, and which characteristics are most important to you. For example, for portraits, the lens speed is the most important factor, for wide-angle shots you need the lens, which helps take pictures without distortion, and for lifestyle photography, it is fast focusing and good stabilization that really matters.

Focal Length

If you plan to shoot portraits, the best decision will be 50mm, 85mm, and 135mm, depending on the kind of portraits you want to shoot. If you are looking for the best lens for wedding photography and you need to show the background using a wide angle, select between 14mm – 35mm variants. Do not even think about lower focal length, as this will be a fisheye, which means visible geometric distortion. When you understand what you want to shoot, you should decide whether you need a zoom or fix lens. I’ve already told you about the pros and cons of each one.

Lens Speed

The more lens speed is, the better results you get. But not always you can get a lens with the necessary focal length and large lens speed. Zoom lenses often have lower lens speed than fix lenses. That is why you should decide, whether you want to take delightful pictures blurring the background and drawing bokeh, and constantly move to get closer or approach the subject simply by moving your hand with the lens speed of 2-3 levels less.

Distortions

This is mainly related to wide-angle lenses because they often have the greatest distortion. However, now there is quite a large selection of wide-angle lenses with minimal distortions. You should avoid significant distortion, especially in group photos, because if there are people, who are very close to the edge of the frame, there is a possibility that they can be stretched.

Focusing and Stabilization

Focusing speed depends not only on the lens but also on the camera itself. When you buy a lens, it is better to have the fastest autofocus. If it works too slowly, you can miss an important frame because of the long focus. Optical Stabilization is also an important parameter, especially for lifestyle photography. Typically, people do not pose for a photographer, they move unpredictably. If it is an evening photo session, you have to shoot at a longer exposure, without stabilization, and you will certainly get blurred photos.

Weight

Perhaps it’s not a very important point for some people, but you will agree that it’s quite difficult to carry a camera with a lens around your neck for 10 hours. It all together will weigh 7 pounds. But more often than not, good optical instruments and devices weigh a lot, and it isn’t reasonable to take 5 lenses if you don’t have a second shooter. It is better to take a couple of lenses that will have an average weight but which will not cause much discomfort.


Ann Young

Hi there, I'm Ann Young - a professional blogger, read more