What lenses to get for your Sony A6000?
Released in 2014, the Sony a6000 (see on Amazon.com) is an APS-C hybrid sensor camera that replaces the old Nex cameras from Sony. Technically, it’s a very good camera that still holds up very well in 2018: it has a 24 Megapixel APS-C sensor and an electronic Oled viewfinder with 1.4 million points. A flash is also integrated directly above the camera body, and its LCD screen is tiltable. It’s not tactile on the other hand, for that it will be necessary rather to orientate itself towards the Sony a6500. Concerning the video mode: no 4K, but you can shoot in full HD at 1080p which allows you to make beautiful videos without being incredible (the a6300 and a6500 cameras do better on this side).
In terms of look, all this fits into a relatively compact and lightweight case, with a rather sober design but a pleasant grip thanks to the handle that offers a good grip of the device. The tabbed menus require some adaptation time but in the end we find ourselves there and it’s possible to customize several buttons on the back of the box.
Let’s talk a little about the negative points: it’s not tropicalized, the screen is not tactile, no integrated stabilization, only one SD card slot (normal given the size of the camera…) and the battery offers really too little autonomy.
Besides that, it’s a good camera that has a very good price-quality ratio if you want to get started with a first hybrid, and that makes great images when combined with the right lens.
Here is a selection of the best lenses compatible with the Sony a6000 to help you make a good collection that is useful in all situations, whether for travel, portrait or landscape photography.
Please leave a comment if you have any suggestions or ideas to improve this list!
Note: Product links in this article lead to Amazon.com
- Sony 18-105 mm f/4 OSS (SELP18105G)
- Sony 50mm f/1.8 OSS (SEL50F18)
- Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN ART
- Sony 35mm f/1.8 OSS (SEL35F18)
- Sigma 16mm f/1.4 DC DN Contemporary
- Sony 10-18mm f/4 (SEL1018)
- Sony 30mm f/3.5 (SEL30M35)
- Sony 55-210mm f/4.5-6.3 OSS (SEL55210)
- Comparative Table
- Useful accessories
The 18-105mm f/4 is far from being a lightweight, but if you want to do without several lenses when travelling, for example, it’s one of the most versatile lenses available for the Sony a6000, with a fairly wide focal range that ranges from wide angle to zoom. For the pluses: it has integrated optical stabilization and the zoom is done internally (i.e. it does not extend when zooming), which is convenient if you want to put your camera on a camera pod to film. Small reproach: when you turn off your camera, the lens goes back to 18mm and does not stay at the last focal length used.
Even if the image quality is very good, don’t expect photos to be as sharp and with a background blur as beautiful as a fixed focal length that will have a larger aperture (quite a bit of distortion at 105mm). That said, it offers great video performance and if that’s the main use you’ll make of it, for example for vlogging, you’ll be happy with it (a little heavy at arm’s length though!).
In short, if you are looking for a versatile lens for your Sony a6000, this 18-105mm is something to consider if you are aware of its limitations.
Simply one of the best lenses available for the Sony a6000. It offers very sharp images with a superb background blur, even in low light. The focal length is quite difficult to use indoors but outdoors it’s very practical. Among the positive points: it’s light and compact, it does not cost too much, it has integrated optical stabilization, it has a super autofocus that is both fast and silent, and it offers a simply superb image rendering, with a super sharp focus.
In short, with this kind of lens we can see the difference in terms of quality with the basic kit. Simply a must-have if you have a Sony a6000 and want to do a portrait (if ever the portrait photo is not the type of preference, the 35mm from Sony is a little more versatile and offers a similar image quality).
If you have a small budget to spend on your Sony a6000 and you want to take a portrait photo, this Sigma 60mm f/2.8 is for you! Light and compact, it delivers images with a top sharpness (it’s one of the sharpest lenses in this selection). The f/2.8 aperture allows shooting in low light, although it does not offer as many possibilities as with the Sony 50mm f/1.8.
That said, I don’t have much to blame him for… given its price, it’s really a good lens, which can also be used to make close-ups of a landscape, for example. Note that when you switch it over you can hear a noise as if something had come off inside, I reassure you it’s quite normal (it’s the autofocus engine)! In short, it’s a very good value for money that perfectly complements the Sony a6000.
Compact, lightweight, with a super fast, silent, precise focusing system, integrates optical stabilization to stabilize small hand shakes to ensure sharp images (practical on the Sony a6000 which has no integrated stabilization)… in short you will have understood, it’s a great lens!!!
The 35mm focal length is quite versatile and the f/1.8 aperture allows it to be used indoors, for portraiture, street photography… and it’s also great for video. Simply one of the best lenses for the Sony a6000 (a little expensive though!).
This is one of the lenses that offers the most sharpness among all those available for the Sony a6000. Sigma did an incredible job designing this lens: the autofocus is fast and accurate, the color rendering is superb, the images are sharp from one corner of the photo to the other.
16mm is wide enough to make a wide angle and is perfect for landscape and real estate photography, but also for other situations such as astrophotography. Since it opens at f/1.4, even if we use it to make portraits close to the subject we have a very beautiful background blur. If you make video, it’s also excellent combined with a carrycot.
It’s also well built and easy to use. One downside, however, is that it’s not stabilized, and if you use it for vlogging, the autofocus makes a slight noise, which can be heard in the sound picked up by the camera or a microphone. In addition, it’s a lens that offers exceptional performance.
Let’s start with the positive points: we have here a surprisingly light wide angle considering its size, compact and therefore easy to take with us on a trip, with a fixed opening of f/4. The focal length range of 10-18mm is very useful for vlogging, especially since it’s stabilized, or for architectural photography, for example.
Let’s move on to the negative points: the most annoying thing is that some copies are bad and deliver a rather weak dive. Remember to check the sharpness of the image in the first few days of your purchase, and get another copy if it’s defective! The fault lies with Sony, which did not carry out adequate quality control. Given the high price at which it’s sold, it’s rather annoying (to be polite). Finally, a rather curious little thing, without being problematic, is that it lengthens by almost 1cm when you are at 10mm, and retracts when you go to 18mm….
Otherwise, another wide-angle option is the Rokinon-Samyang 12mm f/2 (see on Amazon.com), which costs three times less than the 10-18mm but with manual focusing. But overall, the 10-18mm f/4 remains a very good wide angle for the Sony a6000 provided you get a good copy!
This is one of the very first E-mount lenses built by Sony, which is mainly intended for anyone who wants to take macrophotography with their Sony a6000: to photograph tiny and static subjects like coins, jewellery or watches for example (I had trouble with insects and flowers that move at the slightest gust of wind, however). It’s also widely used for portraiture, although it’s not its main use.
This is the lightest lens of this selection and also one of the cheapest. The minimum focusing distance is 9.5cm, which allows you to get quite close to the subject! Even if the opening is only f/3.5, you still get a nice bokeh and that’s not really a problem unless you want to take pictures in dark places. Autofocus is not as fast as 35mm or 50mm, but it does the job. Too bad it’s not stabilized though, you have to hold it well in your hand so you don’t move a bit (or use it on a Sony a6500 that has 5 axis stabilization). In short, a rather fun lens to use, which I recommend if you want to try the macro.
An interesting lens to have in your bag to take pictures from a distance. So yes, the opening is not incredible and you should not try to use it in low light, but during the day with enough sunlight it offers really correct results. On the positive side, it’s stabilized and therefore allows you to shoot freehand, and its quality of construction is strong enough to carry it on a trip. The focal length from 55 to 210mm is versatile and offers a lot of possibilities if you are creative.
In short it’s a good zoom for the Sony a6000, yes it doesn’t produce as beautiful images as with a fixed focal length and it offers better images at 55mm rather than 210mm, but its focal length is really practical if you want to shoot subjects from a distance. And it’s sold at a very affordable price.
All of the Sony A6000 compatible lenses mentioned above are included in this comparison chart to help you choose the right equipment. You will be able to compare them according to their price, the weight and the utility of each one to choose which will suit your budget and your style of photo.
|Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN ART||$$$$$||190 g||f/2.8||portrait|
|Sony Macro 30mm f/3.5 (SEL30M35)||$$$$$||138 g||f/3.5||macro|
|Sony 50mm f/1.8 OSS (SEL50F18)||$$$$$||202 g||f/1.4||portrait|
|Sony 55-210mm f/4.5-6.3 OSS (SEL55210)||$$$$$||345 g||f/4.5-6.3||zoom|
|Samyang (Rokinon) 12mm f/2||$$$$$||200g||f/2||wide angle (architecture, landscape)|
|Sony 35mm f/1.8 OSS (SEL35F18)||$$$$$||154 g||f/2.8||standard lens|
|Sigma 16mm f/1.4 DC DN Contemporary||$$$$$||405 g||f/1.4||wide angle (architecture, landscape)|
|Sony 18-105 mm f/4 OSS (SELP18105G)||$$$$$||225 g||f/4||all-in-one|
|Sony 10-18mm f/4 (SEL1018)||$$$$$||225 g||f/4||wide angle (architecture, landscape)|
A small selection of useful accessories to have in addition to your lenses and your Sony a6000: