Pictures are a return ticket to that moment. Photographers use lenses to tell stories, and it is powerful and a very beautiful privilege to capture some amazing moments that would in other respect, go unnoticed. Learning to take a nice portrait photograph is one of the very first thing aspiring photographers learn. It’s incredibly rewarding and amazing to be able to capture a person’s essence, uniqueness and personality in a photo. Taking a picture and freezing a moment, reveals how rich reality truly is. Photography is obviously an astonishing career field, but it’s a heavenly experience if your career and your passion come together. And we hope that it’s your passion and love for photography that brought you here. In this article we are going to look at best Sony lens for portraits however, before we start check out some basics about portrait lenses.
When you match Epicness with intimacy, you become a master portrait photographer. Portrait photography is different kind of photography. There are some factors that affects how a portrait turns out, like, light conditions, your camera, and the lens you use with it, many people have different opinions and there might be any other feature preferred by different people. Having some good glass to back up your technical knowledge can make all the distinction when taking a portrait.
what is a Portrait Lens?
Traditionally, the term ‘portrait lens’ in the past was used to describe lenses in the range from 85mm to 135mm, which are considered nice and pleasing for general portraiture applications. But in modern times, ‘portrait lens’ can be used to describe just about any lens, no restriction. For instance, a 35mm lens are best and can work great for environmental portraits.
Are you the one who’s interested in surpassing the quality of your portrait shots? The light, composition and your talent matter a lot, but owning the right equipment can make a huge difference as well. Lenses that are suitable for portraits will enhance and improve the whole look of your shots; the blur background, sharp parts, contrast, colours and much more.
Enough about photography and portraits, let’s talk about SONY lenses and cameras
Not very long ago, Sony shooters didn’t have that many lens selections to choose from, but now, the lens market is rapidly growing, especially with Sigma bringing their Art Series to the E mount. Wherever you are and whatever is going on, the amazing SONY camera puts style, accurateness, and convenience in your hands to capture any moment in your own individual and unique way.
As impressive and magnificent today’s digital cameras are, they still rely on a good lens. As a matter of fact, as camera manufacturers have piled on more and more mega pixels to their sensors, a better- and high-quality lens is more important than ever for the photographers who want to truly achieve or attain the maximum resolution their camera is capable of.
But sharpness is just one rhythmic of image quality, and when it comes down to portraiture, we look for other various features of a lens that are more problematic to judge precisely; things like the quality of the blur back ground, or bokeh. And, we are always on the lookout for products that bring and provides the most value to the table for their price. There are plenty of great lenses out there, but we listed few of our favourites across a variety of SONY camera systems which we trust to be some of the best SONY lenses for portrait photography.
Sony is the company that was once known for not having plenty of lenses but it has been making others eat their own words for the past few years now, as it started making lots of lenses for quite some years, But with this many variety of lenses out there, it can sometimes become a little confusing to figure out which one is the best one and right for you, and which one should you go for? If you are into the Sony camera, whether you already own one and want to upgrade your lenses or you are the one who just got interested enough to buy one, and looking for the best portrait lenses, then you have reached the right place. We have reviewed three of the best Sony lenses for portraits with a detailed reviews pros cons and buyer’s guide.
Best Sony Lenses for Portraits (Comparison)
|Sony E 50mm F1.8 OSS Portrait Lens- Editor’s Choice||7.2 ounces||Check Price|
|Sony SEL85F18 85mm F/1.8-22 Camera Lens||1.19 lbs||Check Price|
|Sony FE 85mm f/1.4||2.9 lbs||Check Price|
Sony E 50mm F1.8 OSS Portrait Lens– Editor’s Choice
When it comes to fast top lenses, it is rare to find the one that also includes image stabilization. But that is exactly what Sony has done with it’s E-mount 50 mm f/1.8 OSS. The OSS abbreviates as Optical Steady Shot, and it helps decrease motion blur from camera shake at slow shutter speeds. It’s combined with the bright f/1.8 maximum aperture, this lens is particularly useful in low light situations or indoors.
The lens lends a full frame equivalent focal length of 75 mm, enough to contribute a flattering compression effect while maintaining a decent working distance. As it is built especially for Sony’s APS-C bodies, it is also lighter weight and smaller than the average 50 mm. The OSS and the shallow depth of field capabilities also makes this a great lens for shooting cinematic video.
Though, if you shoot an A5000 or A6000 series camera (like A5000 or A6300) now but are giving upgrading a thought to the full-frame down the road, you might need to skip this particular lens as it is not full frame compatible. Rather, maybe consider going with the newer FE 50 mm f/1.8, which is basically built for full-frame but will also work on your current APS-C Sony, which is great. Despite, it being designed for a larger format, it’s even cheaper at just $200, but it lacks OSS.
This 50mm mid range telephoto lens provides a focal length that is perfect for portraiture and a variety of other subjects, a bright F1.8 maximum aperture, Optical Steady Shot (OSS) image stabilization and an impressive image quality, all in a surprisingly light weight and compact package. Quiet autofocus, add responsive and aperture operation, and you have a lens that is ideally suited for shooting movies as well as stills.
While changing your aperture to defocus the back ground, the light sources appear to be blurred. This ‘bokeh’ effect of the blurred background can be improved with outstanding circular aperture blades used in this lens. The conventional aperture blades have flat sides composing unappealing polygonal shaped defocussed points of light, this lens overcomes this problem through a very unique and different design which keeps the aperture almost perfectly circular from it’s vast open setting to when it is closed by 2 stops. A smoother and more natural defocusing can be achieved as a result.
Gyro sensors which are built into the lens detect even the slightest movement, and the stabilization lens is accurately shifted to counteract any image blur that might occur. The use of quiet and accurate linear motors and technology passed from high end Sony professional camcorders results in effortlessly effective and quite image stabilization.
Here, we listed some of the pros and cons of this Sony E 50mm F1.8 OSS portrait lens.
Pros Cons Affordable and fair price. Not an ideal lens for professional photographers Fast aperture. Image stabilization. Compact. Light weight.
It’s perfect for photo students, parents, and anyone with a Sony APS-C mirrorless camera. Only the middle groups of the optical system move to attain focus, so the overall length of its lens does not change. Other chief benefits include a short minimum focusing distance and fast auto focusing. This lens will make your portraits look real, not perfectly ideal for professionals but works great.
Sony E 50mm F1.8 OSS Sample Image Number 1
Sony E 50mm F1.8 OSS Sample Image Number 2
Sony SEL85F18 85mm F/1.8-22 Camera Lens
This one on the list is pricier than the previous one because of it’s various amazing features and build quality, but not high-priced. It’s wide F1.8 maximum aperture makes beautiful defocusing effects like no other. The 9 blades circular aperture creates aspiring round defocused bokeh making it super cool for professionals as well as starters while the moisture and dust resistant design offers robust reliability. It has an ED glass element for corner-to-corner sharpness, its minimum focus distance is 2.63 feet (which makes 0.8 m), a double linear motor system for quiet, fast and precise focusing. The angle of view is 29 degree and the maximum magnification ratio is 0.13. It provides direct control with customizable focus hold button and AF/MF switch 0.35 mm equivalent focal length. APS-C :127.5.
You can capture beautiful portraits with this affordable 85mm full frame, E-mount mid-telephoto prime lens. This light weight and compact lens is ideal for both full-frame and APS C cameras. The 85 mm focal length of this length is a perfect choice for portrait photography in the way that the maximum F1.8 aperture opens up a world of stunning prime-lens bokeh. The large F1.8 maximum aperture allows nice defocusing effects and enables massive amount of light for dimly lit or low light shooting scenarios.
A direct AF or MF switch on the lens barrel conveniently permits for fast selection between manual focus or auto focus without having to struggle to access any menus. The refined optical design includes an ED (Extra low Dispersion) glass element which dramatically reduces chromatic aberration and permits superior contrast across the whole image, even at those large aperture settings,
The focus hold button not only accomplishes its primary function to lock focus when you are recomposing but can be customized to a number of other functions relying on your requirements. In addition to the Focus Hold, these custom functions include AF On, Eye AF, Aperture Preview, Bright Monitoring or short result preview.
The overall dimension of the lens does not diverge. as we mentioned above, while you are focusing, because just the middle groups of the optical system move to attain focus, this feature is especially important when you are using your lens for video recording. Other chief benefits of this SONY lens include the filter thread at the front of the lens which does not rotate, making it convenient when you are using a polarizing filter.
Below we listed some pros and cons of SONY 85 mm lens.
|It's 9 blade aperture helps in a very decent and smooth picture.||Not any notable con for this lens except for its tendency to flare against the lights|
|Great build quality.|
|Responsive and quiet operation.|
|Double linear motor system allows fast and precise focusing.|
|Best for videography as you don't have to move the overall length of the lens.|
Most of the 85 mm lenses on the market are f/1.4 designs, which are heavy, big and expensive. Sony, on the other hands, has produced a very low priced option here, which costs around $500. In comparison, the Zeiss Batis 85 mm f/1.8 costs around $1100.This Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 lens is superb and easy to use, and also splendid in many ways in terms of its performance. The lower cost compared to most of the 85 mm lens do not seem to have reduced the performance by any means. So full hats off to Sony for achieving this. The one weakness adds to be the tendency to flare against the light, which is heartbreaking, but it can be a deal breaker, depending on the sort of image making you want to do.
Sample Image taken from Sony SEL85F18 85mm F/1.8-22
Sony FE 85mm f/1.4
This lens is built with three aspherical elements comprehending a newly developed essential ingredient for superb resolution; is a new XA (extreme aspherical) lens element with better than 0.01-micron surface precision.
The constant F/1.4 max aperture maintains exposure and the depth of the field regardless of the focal range you plan to zoom to. When you are changing your aperture to defocus the background, the areas out of the focal plane becomes blurred. This ‘bokeh’ effect of the blurred background can be improved with circular aperture blades used in this particular lens.
The first 11-blade circular aperture adds to the performance of the XA element and they are created a lens for the very first time, and exacting spherical aberration adjustment for each and every individual lens. The outcome is enchantingly soft-edged bokeh that is a hallmark of the Sony G Master series. When you change your aperture to defocus the background, the light sources appear to be blurred. This ‘bokeh’ effect of the blurred background can be improved with circular aperture blades used in this particular lens. The conventional aperture blades have flat sides generating unappealing, polygonal shaped defocussed points of light. a lens overcome this issue through a very unique and different design that keeps the aperture almost perfectly circular from its wide-open setting to when it is closed by 2 stops. Smoother and more natural defocusing is obtained as a result.
Focus precision is very important when working with high-resolution images and a narrow depth of field. A ring SSM (Super Sonic wave Motor) yields the precision and power necessary to swiftly and accurately position one of the bulkiest focusing groups in any interchangeable lens for mirrorless cameras, and an advanced multi-sensor system plus high-speed data processing insures the instantaneous feedback required for epic and flawless autofocus precision.
Additional specifics like rubberized rings that are fitting to operate in low temperatures, a zoom bolt that evades undesirable lens delay during transference, and a protection hood lock switch, all augments up to the specialized control and handiness.
Following are some of the pros and cons of this SONY lens.
|Best 11 blade circular aperture ever made.||The slight sound it produces might be an issue if you use camera's built-in microphone when you are filming a video.|
|Decent build quality.|
|More smooth and natural defocused pictures.|
|Extremely sharp lens.|
|Very smooth and silent when switched to manual focus.|
Sony FE 85mm f/1.4 is a beautiful legacy lens that will surely be talked about for years, a little pricey but absolutely worth the price. Creates sharp images, beautiful and an excellent performance in low light. The weight of this lens might be an issue as it’s a bit heavy, so shooting with this lens for the entire day won’t be a cup of tea. The aperture ring present on the lens barrel, makes it easier and quicker to change while shooting. Totally worth the price, highly recommend, especially to those who work professionally and want some good 85 mm lens no matter the weight or the price.
HOW TO CHOOSE BEST SONY LENS FOR PORTRAITS
Check out following buyer’s guide to choose best Sony lens for portraits shooting.
Money can be a very big deciding factor for many photographers, as it’s not something you can neglect. Before you set out on your mission to find the best lens for your SONY camera, give yourself any budget to work with. It may be tempting to be extravagant on a high-end lens, but it should be preferred to not go over the top. If you have a limited budget, be active and research the different budget lenses available out there that can help you achieve the images you would like to take, as well as, are budget friendly. Do you have to sell your car or any other valuable item to get it? The lens better be worth each and every dollar.
TYPE OF PHOTOGRAPHY ACTIVITY
It’s very important to identify what types of activities, subjects or environments you are interested in shooting, and why? in present or in near future, before the purchase to have a better idea and not to make any mistake and realizing it later when you can’t really do any thing to make the situation better. Why? Because while most of the lenses can be used for all types of subjects and scenes, but there are specific lenses that will work great for certain applications. So think carefully about what you plan to shoot with it, as this will assist you narrow down your choices and go for the most ideal lens according to your needs, or your work’s requirements.
Focal length is the millimetre measurement of any lens, between 35mm and 200mm is ideal (from group shots, to the tight portraits). Wide angle lenses commonly having a higher amount of focal length, which affects distortion, forming them to be less attractive for portraits. All of the lenses we mentioned above are telephoto lenses, with an equivalent full-frame focal length, all greater than 50 mm. Telephoto lenses basically tend to have a flattering “compression” effect that is best for portraiture, but they also permit you to get a close-up of your subject without actually having to be physically close, which contributes to be more comfortable for the subject.
Aperture controls depth of the field, and a lens with a relatively larger aperture can generate a shallower depth of field. That is, the depth of area which is in focus will be lesser, which helps free your subject from any background. The lenses with the widest apertures are best lenses, which means they offer a single focal length without the ability of zooming in or zooming out.
WEIGHT AND SIZE
Consider the weight and size of the lens to make sure that you aren’t adding too much weight to your belongings. If it’s possible, try getting a feel of the lens by checking it out at a physical store and holding it in your hand. Most of the people prefer smaller lenses because they are portable and light weight. If you bought your Sony camera for a similar reason, then the exact same criteria go for the lenses you are planning to purchase.
Whether you are a newbie in photography, who wants to start of with the portraits and that’s your style or a professional photographer who needs to upgrade their lens, we assembled some really great and Best Sony lenses for both.
Choosing a new lens for your camera is not any simple act. You don’t just casually pick out a lens and buy one. There are a few factors that you must attentively consider helping you make the right decision, which we have mentioned right on top of it. All of the lenses we decided on putting here are compiled after an taking into consideration all of the important features and are some of the three top rated lenses for SONY camera. We hope you find the best suitable lens for your camera and for the type of portraits you are going to take sooner.