5 most Affordable Quality Canon mount Lenses

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The thing about Canon lenses, they are pretty much expensive. A good quality Canon lens gives optimum speed and quality of photos. But as a beginner or intermediate Photographer, you can’t afford to buy those expensive Canon Lenses. But fear not, there are alternative lenses that could aid you on your adventure in photography. This write-up is from my personal experience with the lenses mentioned. All these lenses are designed to work with APS-C (1.6x crop factor camera bodies).

I’m going to present 5 lenses that will not break your budget but let you enjoy the adventure of your photography. Few of them already from Canon. Let’s get down to the list, shall we?

1. Canon EF 50mm f1.8 II Prime lens

canon-50mm-f1-8

The Canon EF 50mm f1.8 II may be one of the cheapest lenses currently on the market, but its optics belie its lowly price. As befits a classic standard prime lens, it’s very sharp when stopped down (especially in the center), shows minimal chromatic aberration, and has relatively low distortion; APS-C users will also benefit from extremely low vignetting. In most regards it comes very close indeed to its much more expensive bigger brother, the EF 50mm f1.4 USM, lagging marginally behind in corner sharpness at any specific aperture.

The Good:

  • Excellent photo quality in remarkable price

The Bad:

  • Doesn’t feature USM motor

Technical Details:

  • 50mm standard lens with f1.8 maximum aperture
  • Traditional Gauss-type optical design is extremely sharp
  • Focuses as close as 18 inches for extreme close-ups
  • Ideal for natural-looking shots; excellent color balance
  • Measures 2.7 inches in diameter

Priced $99+ and More Details at Amazon (Sample photos from Amazon)

Sample Photo:

canon-50mm-f1-8-sample

2. Canon 70-300mm f4.5-5.6 USM III

canon 75-300mm f4-5 6 III usm

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This compact and lightweight EF 75-300mm telephoto zoom lens is ideal for shooting sports, portraits, and wildlife. The lens is distinguished by a newly developed micro ultra-sonic monitor (USM) that makes autofocusing quicker and quieter, along with an improved zoom mechanism that includes a silver ring on the front for a luxurious touch. The micro USM makes this version of the lens particularly suitable for applications that require a fast autofocus, such as sporting events or wildlife shots. Best of all, the USM version shares many of the same features that make the NON-USM lens so popular, such as a compact size, a close focusing range, and accessory compatibility.

The Good:

  • Features USM motor

The Bad:

  • Doesn’t have Image Stabilization

Technical Details:

  • Focal length: 75-300mm
  • Maximum aperture: 1:4.5-5.6
  • Lens construction: 13 elements in 9 groups
  • Diagonal angle of view: 32 degrees (at 11 feet) to 8 degrees (at 15 feet)
  • Focus adjustment: Front group rotating extension system with USM
  • Closest focusing distance: 4.9 feet
  • Zoom system: Rotating type
  • Filter size: 58mm
  • Dimensions: 2.8 inches in diameter, 4.8 inches long
  • Weight: 16.8 ounces

Priced $200+ at Amazon (Photo Sample from Amazon)

Sample Photo:

canon 75-300mm f4-5 6 III usm-sample

Below is the alternative to Canon 70-300mm USM III

2.A Sigma 70-300mm f4-5.6 macro

sigma 70-300mm f4-5 6 dg apo macro

The high-performance telephoto zoom lens is ideal for digital SLR cameras. This lens has two SLD glass elements in the front lens group and one in the rear lens group It is able to shoot with maximum magnification 1: 2 at the focal length of 300 mm. It’s the ideal lens for portraits, sports photography, nature photography, and other types of photography that frequently use the telephoto range.

The Good:

  • Sometimes provide better clarity than Canon lens mentioned above
  • Macro capability in telephoto zoom

The Bad:

  • The motor is noisy
  • Doesn’t have Image Stabilization

Technical Details:

  • Multi-layer lens coating and lens design reduces flare and ghosting
    Minimum focusing distance is 37.4 inches at all zoom settings
  • Features 14 lens elements in 10 groups
  • High-performance lens ideal for portraits, sports photography, nature photography

Priced $200+ at Amazon (Photo Sample from Amazon)

Sample Photo:

sigma 70-300mm f4-5 6 dg apo macro sample

 

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3.0 Tamron AF 17-50mm f2.8 XR Di-II LD SP

tamron AF 17-50mm f2 8 XR Di-II LD SP

The SP AF17-50mm f2.8 is a lightweight, compact, fast standard zoom lens designed exclusively for digital SLR cameras, expanding the product concept of the popular SP AF28-75mm f2.8 zoom lens. In addition, portrait shots are made beautiful with the natural out-of-focus effect characteristic provided by the fast f2.8 aperture. Additionally, a broader photographic expression through the use of faster shutter speeds as a result of the maximum aperture offers enhanced photographic pleasure. The lens boasts one of the best close-up shooting performances in the class of fast standard zoom lenses designed exclusively for digital cameras and featuring an f2.8 maximum aperture throughout the entire zoom range, to ensure stress-free photographic shots at all focal lengths and distances.

The Good:

  • Excellent capability in that price range
  • Constant f2.8
  • Ability to focus on very close subjects

The Bad:

  • The motor is a bit noisy
  • No image stabilization

Technical Details:

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  • Focal length: 17-50mm
  • Maximum aperture: f2.8
  • Angle of view (diagonal): 78 degrees (at 45 feet) to 31 degrees (11 feet)
  • Lens construction: 16 elements in 13 groups
  • Minimum focus distance: 10.6 inches
  • Maximum mag ratio: 1:4.5
  • Filter size: 67mm
  • Diaphragm blades: 7
  • Minimum aperture: f32
  • Standard accessory: Flower-shaped hood
  • Compatible mount: Canon AF, Konica Minolta AF-D, and Nikon AF-D
  • Dimensions: 2.9 inches in diameter and 3.3 inches long
  • Weight:15.2 ounces

Priced $440+ and More Details at Amazon (Sample photos from Amazon)

Sample Photo:

tamron AF 17-50mm f2 8 XR Di-II LD SP sample 1

tamron AF 17-50mm f2 8 XR Di-II LD SP sample 2

4.0 Tokina 11-16MM f2.8 ATX

tokina 11-16mm f 2.8

The AF 12-24mm f4 AT-X Pro DX was a huge success for Tokina – it is one of the most attractive lenses from a price/performance perspective. The Tokina AF 11-16mm f2.8 AT-X Pro DX is currently the best ultra-wide angle zoom lens for Canon EOS APS-C DSLRs. The resolution is impressively high throughout the zoom range (albeit a short one) and across the image field. Vignetting is really only a problem at 11mm @ f2.8 but otherwise, the issue is very well controlled. The level of distortions is comparatively low. Typical for most Tokina lenses it has one weakness: lateral CAs which are very high at all settings. The build quality is on a very high level and its a joy to handle the lens out there. All-in-all a very sound package especially when considering the quite affordable price

The Good:

  • Excellent capability in that price range
  • Constant f2.8
  • Ability to focus on very close subjects

The Bad:

  • Vignetting at 11mm @ f2.8

Technical Details:

  • 13 elements in 11 groups inc. 2 aspherical elements and 1 SD element
  • Number of aperture blades 9
  • Min. focus distance 0.30m (max. magnification ratio ~1:11.6)
    Dimensions 84x89mm
  • Weight 560g
  • Filter size 77mm (non-rotating)
  • Hood supplied, petal-shaped
  • focus-clutch AF/MF switch

Priced $840+ and More Details at Amazon (Sample photo from [email protected])

Sample Photo:

tokina 11-16mm f 2 8 AT-X sample

5.0 Sigma 50mm f2.8 EX DG Macro 1:2

sigma 50mm f 2 8 EX DG Macro 1 2

Designed exclusively for Canon SLR cameras, this macro lens is specially coated to get the best possible color balance while cutting down on ghosting caused by reflections from the digital image sensor. The lens also includes a floating focusing system, which allows you to precisely photograph objects throughout the entire focusing range. Most importantly, this standard macro lens makes it possible to enjoy better communication with your subject. When viewing through the camera’s finder, you’ll be able to move the subject and make precise adjustments. For example, the lens offers a close working distance of 7.4 inches, making it extremely convenient to take close-up pictures of a fossil or other inanimate objects.
Other details include a minimum aperture of f/45 that provides a greater depth of field than most lenses, a screw-in lens hood that makes it easy to attach circular polarizing filters, and a 46.8-degree angle of view. All Sigma lenses carry a one-year warranty.

The Good:

  • Excellent capability in that price range
  • Constant f2.8
  • Ability to focus on very close subjects

The Bad:

  • Doesn’t have USM motor

Technical Details:

  • Focal length: 50mm
  • Maximum aperture: f2.8
  • Lens construction: 10 elements in 9 groups
  • Angle of view: 46.8 degrees
  • Number of diaphragm blades: 7
  • Minimum aperture: f45
  • Minimum focusing distance: 7.4 inches
  • Maximum magnification: 1:1
  • Filter size: 55mm
  • Corresponding mount: Canon
  • Dimensions: 2.8 inches in diameter and 2.6 inches long
  • Weight: 11.3 ounces

Priced $280+ and More Details at Amazon (Sample photo from Amazon)

Sample Photo:

sigma 50mm f 2 8 EX DG Macro 1 2 sample

There you have it. I’ve covered a prime lens for portraits, daily walk-around lens, telephoto lens, wide angle lens and a very affordable macro lens too. I believe as a beginner these lenses will provide you quality without breakdown your wallet. Of course, some of them won’t be able to compete with the speed Canon ultrasonic motors but they yet produce great photos. Also to be noted, it is not the lens but it is YOU and your Vision which matters the most.

Now all the pros might not agree with me about the lenses. I would love to hear your thoughts. Even you can buzz me on twitter if you are there.

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