Best Travel Lens for Sony a6000 – Top 10 Options Reviewed
The Sony a6000 has in the recent past been dubbed one of the finest cameras for travel photography. In other words, you just can’t afford to leave home without it. But why is this the case with it?
To begin with, this camera is incredibly light in weight and that makes it easy to pack up and carry in your bags. On top of that, it is small but powerful, meaning that it enables you to capture some jaw-dropping images at a competitive price.
However, as powerful as it is, this lens can perform even better with the right kind of lens. And the good news is that there are tens of good lenses on the market to choose from.
And because finding your prince in shining armor in a sea full of option is not always easy, we have gone ahead and done the heavy-lifting for you. Below now is a run-down of the top 10 best travel lens for Sony a6000 that we have come across so far.
Travel Lens for Sony a6000 – Comparison
Psst! The write-up below is a bit long and detailed. Don’t have the time to read through hundreds of sentences? We have got a detailed table waiting for you right here.
|Ranking||Product Name||Lens Type||Maximum Focal Length|
|1||Sony 55mm F1.8 Carl||Standard||55 Millimeters|
|2||Sony E35mm f/1.8 SEL35F18 lens||Wide Angle||35 Millimeters|
|3||Sony E 18-105mm F/4 G OSS PZ lens||Wide Angle||105 Millimeters|
|4||Sony 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 lens||Wide Angle||16 Millimeters|
|5||Sony E 55-210mm f4.5-6.3 lens||–||–|
|6||Sony FE 28mm f/2-22 SEL28F20 lens||Wide Angle||–|
|7||Rokinon 12mm F2.0 NCS CS lens||Wide Angle||12 Millimeters|
|8||Sigma 16mm f/1.4 DC DN lens||Wide Angle||16 Millimeters|
|9||Sony 50mm f/1.8 E lens||Standard||50 Millimeters|
|10||Sony FE 50mm F1.8 SEL50F18F lens||Standard||50 Millimeters|
1. Sony 55mm F1.8 Carl Zeiss Sonnar T FE ZA lens
This prime lens was designed to work on the Sony full-frame E-mount system, and it is a compact lens whose fast F1.8 aperture makes it a suitable choice for low light conditions.
The lens has an alloy body and weighs only 281g, making it light and comfortable to move around with. It has a fantastic build and is entirely moisture and dust resistant.
The manual focus ring is wide, ridged and textured to make the focusing operation easy for you. Further, it utilizes a linear motor which will ensure that the focusing is smooth and silent, meaning that this will be your best bet for shooting videos. The autofocus operation is fast and quiet as well.
It comes with a petal-shaped lens hood to compensate for the lack of a lens.
The lens is quite sharp while the chromatic aberrations are all but eliminated. The iris diaphragm has nine rounded blades which ensure that you get an impressive bokeh.
- Dust and moisture proof
- Silent focus operation
- Very light
- Very expensive
2. Sony E35mm f/1.8 SEL35F18 lens
This prime lens was released in September 2012 and was designed to work on cameras with APS-C sized sensors. The combination of its fast maximum aperture and built-in Optical Steady Shot (OSS) makes it suitable for shooting in low-light conditions.
The optical construction consists of 8 elements in six groups, one of which being an ED element and two other aspherical elements which are crucial in reducing spherical aberration and improving contrast.
It has a seven-blade iris diaphragm which will ensure that your images have an outstanding bokeh. It is also reasonably versatile with an equivalent angle of view of 52.5mm and a maximum aperture of f/1.8.
The lens is quite compact and small, being 45mm long and weighing 154 grams. It has an impressive build, with the mounting plate being chromed metal and the outer barrel and focusing ring constructed from aluminum alloy.
- Lightweight and compact
- Decent background blur
- Slow autofocus
Also Read: 10 Best Lenses for Sony a7iii Reviewed – Our Honest Thoughts & Analysis
3. Sony E 18-105mm F/4 G OSS PZ lens
The Sony 18-105mm lens was released in August 2013, and it is designed to be 100% electronic. You will find it particularly useful for shooting videos when you consider its power zoom function and its constant aperture of f/4.
It has an angle of view equivalent to 35mm and will work nicely on APS-C sized sensor cameras. The lens will provide you with images having decent sharpness.
The autofocus operation is high-speed while the manual focusing is equally smooth.
When it comes to the build, you will be impressed by the classy satin black finish coupled with the plastic filter ring and metallic lens mount. The aperture has seven rounded elements which are vital n producing a remarkable bokeh.
It also utilizes Optical SteadyShot (OSS) image stabilization for highly stable images.
Finally, the lens comes with a petal-shaped hood to compensate for lack of a case.
- Fast autofocus
- Decent bokeh
- Strong build
- Strong distortion
4. Sony 16mm f/2.8 SEL16F28 lens
This pancake lens has a variety of features that will blow you off your feet. First, the lens weighs only 3.47 ounces and measures 0.8 inches long, making it very small, light and compact such that you need your pocket to carry it around.
This lightness is further enhanced by its mostly plastic construction, with the only exception being the mounting ring which is metallic.
The optical construction consists of five elements in five groups, one of which is an aspherical surface element.
The manual focus operation is quite smooth while the silent motor ensures that the autofocus action is quiet. Still, on the autofocus, it is swift and accurate.
Ghosting and color fringing are averagely controlled as you would expect from a prime lens.
- Light and compact
- Fast and accurate autofocus
- Amazing fit
- Poor bokeh
5. Sony E 55-210mm f4.5-6.3 lens
This light lens is designed to work well with the Sony APS-C mirror-less system, and we shall explain to you why it is worth considering. First is its size which is 4.3 by 2.5 inches when not zoomed and weight of 12.2 ounces. This is an acceptable combination.
Then, it has a solid build which features a metal barrel and knurled focus and zoom rings. All these give the lens a fantastic premium feel.
It utilizes the optical image stabilization (OSS) to give you steady and clear images free from blurs brought about by shaky hands.
You will be impressed at how this lens performs when it comes to controlling chromatic aberration and geometric distortion. These defects are kept to a minimum and are barely noticeable.
- Lightweight and compact
- Has image stabilization
- Smooth zoom action
- Poor in low light conditions
6. Sony FE 28mm f/2-22 SEL28F20 lens
We are going to briefly explain to you why this standard prime lens is worth breaking the bank for. First, it has a top-notch aluminum build which not only makes it sturdy but also gives it a classy and stunning appearance.
Then, it is incredibly lightweight and compact, so moving around with it will never be an issue. Its optical construction consists of an ED glass element which will play a big part in minimizing flares and ghosting.
It also has a fast aperture and a rounded 9-blade aperture which contributes to the 28mm lens having an outstanding bokeh.
The autofocus system is very silent and to top everything up, the lens is very easy to use, making it very suitable for beginners.
- Impressive flare-resistance
- Sturdy and high-quality build
- Easy to use
- Very expensive
7. Rokinon 12mm F2.0 NCS CS lens
This lens by Rokinon has a wide angle of view and is designed to work on APS-C mirror-less cameras. Its sharpness is particularly impressive at f/5.6 while the center will be sharp at f/2.0. Distortion is kept at a minimum, and even better is that you can easily correct it.
It has a high-quality build, with a metal mount and a plastic focus ring and barrel. It comes with a 67mm filter thread which fits very nicely. This sturdy construction ensures that it can withstand rough environments.
The lens has a field of view of roughly 99 degrees and this combined with the fast aperture of f/2.0 makes it a handy astrophoto lens.
You will equally be impressed by its packaging which is so professionally done that it creates an excellent first impression.
- Wide angle of view
- Minimum distortion
- High-quality and tough construction
- Fragile lens hood
8. Sigma 16mm f/1.4 DC DN lens
This lens was introduced to the market in 2017 and has a fixed focal length throughout the range. On micro-43 sensor camera, the lens has a field of view equivalent to a 32 mm lens on a full-frame sensor camera.
This angle of view makes it very suitable for shooting documentaries, weddings, and vacations.
It has a solid build and is entirely water and dust-proof. The optical design consists of 16 elements in 13 groups, three of which are FLD, two are SLD and two being aspherical elements.
All these elements are vital in making the lens very sharp, have barely-noticeable distortion and a well-controlled vignetting.
The lens has an aperture with nine rounded lamellae which coupled with the impressive sharpness produce a fantastic bokeh.
Finally, if you wish to switch from auto to manual focus, there are control buttons on the body to do so.
- High-quality images
- Very affordable
- Too bulky
9. Sony 50mm f/1.8 E lens
This Sony lens was introduced in 2011 and is one you should consider adding to your collection as a photography enthusiast.
It has a sturdy build with a silent autofocus action. You will also find that the manual focus is very smooth. It utilizes the Optical SteadyShot (OSS) stabilizer to ensure that you end up with high-quality and stable photos.
The optical design consists of nine elements in eight groups while the circular aperture blades ensure that it produces an outstanding bokeh.
The body is constructed out of high-quality plastic and metal but remains a very lightweight lens.
Lastly, the package includes the manufacturer’s manual, front and rear caps and a plastic hood.
- Solid build
- Fantastic bokeh
- Prone to axial color fringing
Check out our another related article: The Best Vintage Lenses : The Ultimate Guide for Every Photographer
10. Sony FE 50mm F1.8 SEL50F18F lens
This lens was introduced in 2011 and is designed to work with APS-C sensor NEX camera. It has a field of view equivalent to 75mm, and it utilizes the Optical SteadyShot image stabilization feature.
The sharpness of this lens gets better as it is stopped down, whereby you are likely to get the sharpest image at f/8.
You can make your images free of corner-shading if you avoid the wider apertures of f/1.8 or f/2. The chromatic aberration is also well-handled.
The autofocus operation is very fast at just under a second, and it does so very silently. You can also choose manual focusing which will work well with a magnification of 7x and 14x.
Finally, the lens weighs only 7 ounces and is covered in a silvery shell. The metal mount it uses to mount on the camera body is metallic while it has plastic threads to attach the 49mm filters.
- Has image stabilization
- Very small and light
- Fast and silent autofocus
- Prone to chromatic aberration at wide apertures
Travel Lens for Sony a6000 – Buying Guide
So, of the 10 lens reviewed above, which one is the best for you? The answer may vary depending on the trip you’re planning to take. However, just to get you started in the right directions, the following are the essential factors to keep in mind.
For purposes of travel convenience, it makes sense to go for the lightest lens available. This is especially important keeping the cargo weight limitations that most airlines have.
You may not always have the luxury to carry more than one lens on your trips. And for that reason, your best bet is to have a lens that can carry out multiple tasks for you, at once.
Low-light situations are more common than you think especially when traveling. What’s more? Some ancient buildings prevent you from using your flash when capturing photographs. Therefore, your best bet is a fast lens with a large aperture.
What’s the best budget lens for Sony a6000? You might be wondering. And well, all we’d say is that although there are many cheap travel lenses out there in the world, be careful not to compromise on quality all in the name of saving a few bucks.
Which One Is The Best?
For a prime lens, we’d recommend settling for the Sony f/1.8 SEL35F18 which provides built-in image stabilization and awesome low-light performance.
And if a zooming lens is what you’re looking for, we’d suggest the Sony 18-105mm SELP18105G Lens which has a reasonably wide aperture and a fantastic zooming range.
But, ultimately, the best kind of lens may vary based on the situation. For instance, the Sony 18-105mm SELP18105G is larger in size compared to the Sony f/1.8 SEL35F18. And, therefore, if you’re short of space in your luggage bags, the latter would be a better option.
Before you pack up your bags in readiness for your next travel mission, make sure you have a powerful lens for your Sony a6000. Who knows? You might just come across some never-seen-before opportunities that you can capture and turn into everlasting memorable videos or photos.
Great post about travel lenses! I love the Sony a6000 and I think you really got the best picks on this list.