A Quick Overview
Our Review of the Best Canon Lens for Video in 2022
Best Overall - Editor’s Choice - Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM
It might come as a surprise to some to see another name other than Canon as one of our best Canon lenses but those familiar with Sigma products can testify to the quality of their lenses. Anyway, the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM lens is the best value lens for Canon cameras, and with good reason.
With a maximum aperture of f/1.4, this lens is capable of making videos in both daylight and night time scenarios. With the use of a hypersonic motor (HSM) for its autofocus and the 9 rounded blade diaphragm, easy and fast focusing alongside impressive depth of field is achieved.
Part of the make up includes elements that have been designed to help achieve true color representation in case of bright scenarios or flares. With a minimum focusing distance of just 30cm, this lens’ macro capability is quite good. It is a 35mm prime lens meaning you can get an equivalent of 56mm on a APS-C sensor, which will give you a picture closer to the Nifty-fifty.
Even with all these awesome features that this lens carries, the most interesting point is that it comes at a price point that is hard to beat. Without a shred of doubt, this lens is the best value lens you can get in the market.
Best Budget Option - Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM
Nifty-fiftys are the sweethearts of the lens world because of their versatility. The Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 is arguably one of the best prime lenses around for a Canon EF mount, especially with the price point. However, this lens being a budget option does not affect the awesome features it possesses.
This portable lens has an aperture ranging from f/22 to f/1.8, meaning you can work with large depths of focus during filming. Furthermore, the focusing speed is quite impressive. It uses the STM (Stepping motor) for focusing so you don’t have to worry about your camera picking up machine noises while working. You also get a manual override on the autofocus.
Just like the Sigma discussed above, the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM has super coatings on some of the elements in its makeup to minimize flaring, ghosting, and other aberrations. This lens has a 35cm MFD alongside 0.21x magnification for macro photography.
While this lens is popular, it is the recommended lens for budding cinematographers because it portrays imagery close to the human eye. In addition, using this lens with an APS-C sensor will give you a focal length in the 80s range, which is quite good for portraiture, which is another reason it’s one of the best Canon lenses around.
Best Canon DSLR Camera Lens - Canon EF 17-40mm USM
DSLR cameras are quite common. It’s no surprise that there are more options of Canon DSLR camera lenses available than Canon mirrorless camera lenses. Despite this surplus of options, I have decided to go with the Canon EF 17-40mm USM as the best option available partly because it is a zoom lens with a small focal range and also for the features it has.
This lens has the kind of wide angle movie makers favor when shooting videos. Even with the max of focal length of 40mm, you will still get a lens capable of shooting videos in tight spaces. The maximum aperture of f/4, although not as large as the two options discussed above, does well enough and it is constant across the zoom range.
As for autofocusing, it uses the USM which is a fast and silent autofocus mechanism for zoom lenses. In addition, it also has a full manual focus override that eases shooting videos. Furthermore, this lens uses 7 rounded blades for the aperture diaphragm, which also contributes to the awesome focusing.
The MFD is 28cm which is quite good and makes for good close-ups when filming. The aspherical elements in this lens alongside a ultra-low dispersion element makes ghosting and flaring a thing not to be worried about. Finally, The Canon EF 17-40mm USM was built to withstand the harshest of weathers with the weather seals and dust resistant build making it excellent for outdoor shoots and one of the best Canon DSLR camera lenses around.
Best Canon Mirrorless Lens - Canon RF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
As far as mirrorless cameras go, this zoom lens is arguably the best Canon mirrorless camera lens you can get your hands on. While it has a larger focal length range compared to the Canon EF lens discussed above, it has a wider aperture which makes for fast focusing and low-light photography.
The Canon RF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM, like its counterpart, maintains the wide aperture across the zoom range. With a better focal length range, tinkering with a APS-C sensor gives you a superior wide-angle to telephoto range lens. This better focal length range makes this zoom lens superb for documentary videos.
Prime lenses are more favored for making videos because of the quality of images they can produce at their fixed focal length.
Another impressive feature of this lens is the Image Stabilization (IS) which has up to five stops to correct camera shakes, making it quite good for handheld photography. And of course, the USM autofocusing mechanism, near-silent and fast, helps to achieve impressive focus and depth of fields. Additionally, you get a MFD as low as 21cm which gives you a magnification of 0.3x for real close-ups.
The Canon RF 24-70mm f/2.8 L USM features optical elements designed to deal with all common forms of chromatic aberrations. In addition, you can configure the control ring to cater for specific scenarios. Lastly, this lens has a quality build that aids its use outdoors and in different weather conditions.
Best Canon APS-C Sensor Lens - Canon EF-M 32mm f/1.4 STM
APS-C Sensor cameras are quite common and it’s only proper to make mention of the best Canon lens for video for a Canon APS-C sensor camera. The Canon EF-M 32mm f/1.4 STM lens is an APS-C sensor lens for mirrorless cameras. It gives you an angle of view equivalent to 51.2mm on a full frame camera. While there are a lot of options in the market, especially with DSLR cameras being more common, this lens is simply too good to be ignored.
This prime lens with fixed focal length is in the standard lens range category, just like the nifty-fifty, it is known for its versatility. Additionally, the wide f/1.4 aperture gives you a lens perfect for filming in every kind of lighting conditions.
As for focusing, this lens uses the STM focusing mechanism, which is quite silent and fast. Als you get a full manual focus override, making this lens adequate for filming. The MFD of just 23cm gives you good macro photography capability. Also, thanks to the seven rounded blade diaphragm, you can achieve awesome videos with different depths of field.
It features elements that have been treated with super spectra coatings that help to deal with flares and ghosting. Then, there are other elements available to deal with chromatic aberrations and distortions.
How to Choose the Best Canon Lens for Video in 2022
Lenses are as important as the camera on which you mount them. In fact, the quality of lens largely determines the quality of the photo or video you are trying to make, and an outstanding lens will always be more desired.
Also read: Best Lenses for Canon Rebel T7
Photography is so wide that it is actually impossible to declare absolute lens winners. This is because a lot of lenses were created with various specifications to cater to different needs. Although dealing in Canon camera lenses reduces the wealth of choices, there are some important features that should be noted when choosing the best Canon Lens for video. Some of them are:
Lens mounts come in different shapes and sizes. They are the part of the camera that connects it to a lens. While the job description sounds easy, lens mounts determine the kind of lens you can attach to the camera, and even the functionality of the lens you attached.
Canon have four types of lens mounts attached to their cameras
- EF Mounts: These are Canon lens mounts for full-frame sensor DSLR cameras.
- RF Mounts: These sets of mounts are attached to mirrorless cameras with full frame sensors.
- EF-S Mounts: They are mounts on APS-C sensor DSLR cameras.
- EF-M mounts: Are lens mounts on APS-C sensor mirrorless cameras.
While there are a lot of mount types because of the different brands of camera,there are a limited number of lenses compatible with your camera lens mount, and knowing the type of lens mount your camera uses can really help in the decision making process.
Class of Lens
There are two classes of lens, each with its own advantage. We have the
- Prime Lenses: These are lenses with a fixed focal length. Due to the fixed focal length, they are fast, and they produce very sharp images. Generally, Prime lenses are better for making videos (movies) than their counterparts. Also, they are portable, more durable, and cheap compared to zoom lenses.
- Zoom Lenses: Zoom lenses are lenses with a range of focal length, meaning they can operate in more focal lengths at once, than the prime lens. Zoom lenses are also good for making videos, especially documentaries, sports, or wildlife. Zoom lenses are more expensive and heavier but can combine the function of multiple prime lenses.
Also read: Best Lenses for Canon R5
Type of Lens
We have different types of lenses available. Lens types are categorized based on the focal length, or range of focal length they can effectively work in. The common lens types are
- Macro Lenses: They got their name from their ability to replicate an object in a 1:1 ratio. They have very minute minimum focusing distances (MFD) and are generally used for close-ups of subjects.
- Wide-angle Lenses: These are lenses with focal lengths lesser than 35mm for a full-frame sensor. They are very good for shooting video in tight spaces and can also fit a lot of information into a frame.
- Standard Lenses: These are lenses in the 35mm to 55mm focal length range for full-frame sensors. They give you a bit of everything (wide-angle and mild telephoto). They are the most common of the lens types because of their versatility and close representation of the human eye view.
- Telephoto Lenses: These are lenses with focal length greater than that of the standard lens. They are good for closing in on a subject from a large distance. The mild ones are exceptional for portrait photography, and their use in video making is limited.
The aperture of a lens is the part of a lens that opens for the lens to take in light. In simpler terms, the larger the aperture can open, the more the lens can take in more light. For example, a large aperture opening is better for low-light scenes than a smaller one because it can take in more light. It’s not that simple though. Apertures work together with shutter speed, and the two actually determine how well a camera captures an image.
In addition, apertures are largely responsible for the depth of fields commonly used in filmmaking. As a note, large apertures produce smaller depth of field, and small apertures produce larger depth of field.
Autofocusing(1) is a major selling point for any lens these days. Thanks to technology, lens makers now use different mechanisms (e.g STM, USM, HSM) to get fast and silent autofocus. Prime lenses generally have the fastest and quietest autofocus. Zoom lenses are a bit slower and less quiet, owing to the fact that the lens has more moving parts and a big reason why prime lenses are still preferred for videos. Also, more recent Canon camera lenses have full manual override over the autofocus.
Lenses are made up of optical elements that are designed to improve imagery. The more expensive ones have better elements. Mostly, parts of the glass elements in a lens are designed to correct chromatic aberration, distortion, flaring, and a lot of other challenges video makers face during shots.
Any lens type with a wide aperture, f/1.4 or more is good for low-light scenes because they can actually make good use of the little light that is at the scene.
Generally, zoom lenses with a wide aperture range or large focal length are better at taking long distance videos.
There you have it, the best Canon Lenses for video in 2022. While there are no absolutes when it comes to the best lenses, choosing the best lens for your videos has gotten a lot easier. You can also make better decisions as regards Canon lens choices in the Future.
Of the lenses in this review, my preferred choice is the prime lens, Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM art because it offers the best option for making videos in terms of field of view, depth of field, aperture opening, and the autofocusing speed. Also, this lens has one of the best price points for a lens of this quality. Although it does not have the Image Stabilization feature, this can easily be remedied with a stand.
Do you agree with my list? What is your favorite Canon camera lens? Share your thoughts with us in the comments.
- Todd V. (2015 March). How focus works. Retrieved from https://www.bhphotovideo.com/explora/photography/tips-and-solutions/how-focus-works