- Advanced 24.2MP back Illuminated 35 millimeter full frame image sensor
- ISO 100 25600 (expandable to 51200). Lens compatibility: Sony E mount lenses
- Hybrid AF with 179 point focal plane phase detection and 25 contrast detect points
What is the best travel lens for Sony A6000?
So you’re planning on travelling and wondering which lens is best for travel photography with your Sony A6000?
These days, most travelers use their smartphones to take pictures and post them on Facebook or Instagram. Don’t get me wrong, you can make impressive pictures with recent smartphones and they are very useful to document little details of your trip, but they are limited to one perspective.
So you’ll probably need a lense with a focal range that will allow you to get shots that are impossible to get with your cell phone (zoom or wide angle).
What makes a good travel lens?
Well, this is extremely subjective and depends on the type of photo you will make when you will be on the road. It also depends on how often you’re going to use it. Any lens can be good for travel, but having to commute by train, bus, plane, and moving around all the time makes it hard to carry a huge bag dedicated to your favourite lenses. There are always the risks to pay extra fees for them, to break them during the trip or to get your bag stolen.
Hence, most photographers like to travel light, with the lightest and most versatile setup possible. Getting the most out of one or two lenses is probably the way to go, with a range .
You may not know for sure what kind of shot you are about to make during your trip. If you plan on taking portraits, wildlife, street scenes but also landscapes, a zoom lens will be perfect since they offers the advantage of allowing close-ups and scenery shots, to some extent. For a more versatile use, this kind of lens will be the perfect fit.
Travels are full of surprises, and you may want to grab your Sony a6000 and shoot as quickly as possible. For this situation, the best lens will be a bright wide angle lens since they are usually a good choice for street photography. They allow for close-ups and large scenes, and are generally pretty small and convenient to carry. If you are planning a city trip, this kind of lens should be attached in permanence to the body of your Sony a6000.
Every photographer has its own favourite setup for snapping on the go. But if you are not sure on what travel lens to choose for your Sony A6000, this small selection is suitable for most photographic opportunities while traveling.
Note: the product links in this article lead to Amazon.com
- Sony 18-105mm f/4 OSS (All around travel lens)
- Sony 10-18mm f/4 OSS (Wide angle)
- Sony 55-210mm f/4.5-6.3 OSS (Zoom lens)
- Useful accessories
Here’s the Top 3 travel lenses you should consider for your Sony A6000:
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.
- High performance E mount lens with excellent contrast; Minimum Aperture (F): 22
- Minimum Focus Distance : 1.48 (Wide) 3.12 ft (Tele), Maximum Magnification ratio : 0.11x, Focal Length : 18 105 mm
- Versatile 27 158mm (35mm equiv.) zoom range. Angle of view (APS C): 76° 15°. Number of aperture blades are 7
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 aperture 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!
- Angle of View (APS-C) - 109 ° – 76 °
- Minimum focal length of 10 mm (15 mm in 35 mm-camera equivalency)
- Minimum Focus Distance : 0.82 ft (0.25 m), Maximum Magnification ratio : 0.1x
An interesting lens to have in your bag to take pictures from a distance. So yes, the aperture 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.
- Wide zoom range (82 - 315mm 35mm equivalent) ideal for sports or nature;Aperture blades : 7
- Internal focusing for smooth, quiet operation - perfect for video capture.Direct manual focus with non-rotating focus ring during AF: ideal for precise, comfortable manual focus adjustments
- Optical Steady Shot image stabilization for stable video capture and low light performance
Travels can be hectic, so you want to make sure that your lenses are safe and sound all along the trip. A good quality carry bag is mandatory to protect them from the weather and bumps. A UV filter will also help protect your lens by adding a layer of glass that can be scratched or dripping with water with no harm to the lens. Finally, a polarizing filter is always useful to get a glare-free result in any shooting scenario you might face.
Here is a small selection of useful accessories to complement your lenses and your Sony A6000:
If you want to go on a trip soon and are wondering what is the best travel lens for the Sony A6000, think in advance about the types of photos you plan to take mainly: landscapes, portraits, night shots… Think about the focal lengths you need for that.
You can also go on Google, type in the name of the country or the tourist sites you want to visit and you will see which focal lengths are mainly used. This will give you an idea of what equipment you will need to bring but remember that taking a single lens with you might be too limiting. The flexibility of an all-around lens is very useful but generally they offer a lower image quality than a fixed focal length.
Another thing, if you plan to do a lot of walking or hiking, take into account the total weight with the camera body and the lens. If the whole thing is too heavy or bulky and lacks discretion, you won’t want to bother with it and would rather just take your smartphone with you. You may also not want to risk damaging an extremely expensive lens.
And finally, perhaps the most decisive point about choosing the perfect travel lens for your Sony A6000 will be if you need to get a portfolio of professional quality travel photos or videos (it may be your business or it may become your business who knows?).