best lens for macro photography

Best lens for macro photography

Hello my wonderful readers, hope you are doing well. In this article I will review some of the best lens for macro photography.

Taking macro images let you get close to your subjects and see the miniature world from another point of view.

Macro lenses zoom much closer to the subject than normal lenses. They provide higher magnification, and thus, more details of the subjects will be processed in the image.

The ideal lens for macro photography are at a magnification ratio of 1:1, this means that if you take photos of insects or flowers of a certain size, the size of them in the image will be the same as projected into the cameras sensor. This is also called “Life size”.

And also, there are lens with ratio of 1:2 which will project the image of your subjects at half of their size into the sensor, and lens with 5:1 ratio, will make you subjects look five times bigger than their real size, in the final process.

Magnification ratio tells you how large or small the subjects will look in the image projected into the sensor.

The ideal focal length for macro is between 90-105mm, provides you enough working distance without startling your subjects. Below are the best lens for macro photography for Canon, Nikon and Sony.

Canon macro lens


1. Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM Macro Lens for Canon EF

The Sigma macro lens is an extremely sharp lens which provides a magnification ratio of 1:1. Helps you take high quality images of your favorite subjects.

Sigma macro lens has the image stabilization (IS, OS) option, so when you take images at a higher magnification, it assures you that you capture sharp images even at slow shutter speed.

  1. Aperture range: f/2.8 – f/22
  2. EF-mount and Full frame
  3. Bargain price

2. Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro Lens

The dedicated lens for Canon cameras, has a magnification ratio of 1:1 and provides high quality images. Your images will come out sharp even at f/2.8, but even sharper at f/3.2.

The Canon macro lens has the image stabilization option to help you take sharp images at slow shutter speeds.

It is ideal not only for macro photography, but for portrait too. Offers great bokeh effect, the backgrounds will come out smooth and creamy.

The lens is light weight, but also solid, so you don’t have to worry about handling. The manual focus is easy to maneuver due to its large ring.

  1. Great for insect photography
  2. Reasonable price
  3. 15 elements in 12 groups
  4. Silent auto-focus

3. Canon EF 180mm f3.5L Macro USM Auto-Focus

If you like to shoot tiny bugs, this lens is for you. Provides high quality and detailed images at a reasonable working distance. You don’t have to worry that your subjects will get scared and run or fly away.

The manual focus ring is smooth and accurate. Provides awesome bokeh background and the quality of colors and contrast are stunning. Takes sharp images at every aperture setting, reducing lens diffraction.

Provides three UD glass elements and an internal floating system, which combine to minimize chromatic aberrations caused by changes in focusing distance.

  1. Ultrasonic monitor, quiet auto-focusing
  2. Focusing distance range of 1.57 feet to infinity
  3. 14 elements in 12 groups, Diagonal angle of view
  4. Doesn’t have Image Stabilizer (IS)

Nikon macro lens


1. Nikon AF-S Micro-Nikkor 105 mm f/2.8G VR IF-ED Lens

The dedicated Nikkor macro lens is a light weight lens and also solid when handheld. It is compatible with all Nikon DSLR cameras.

The lens have a magnification ratio of 1:1 and help you get close enough to your subjects without startling them.

The VR mark on the lens stands for Vibration Reduction, just like IS is for Canon lens. Ensures you in capturing sharp images even at slow shutter speeds.

  1. Great for both portrait and macro photography
  2. 14 elements in 12 groups
  3. Silent wave motor (silent auto-focus)
  4. Nano Crystal & Super Integrated Coatings
  5. Bargain price

2. Tamron AFF017N700 SP 90mm F/2.8 Di VC USD 1:1 Macro

This third party macro lens for Nikon cameras is ideal for both portrait and macro photography. Provides a magnification ratio of 1:1.

It has ultrasonic motor incorporated, which makes auto-focus silent, so you can capture your subjects without scaring them.

BBAR and eBAND coatings are incorporated to eliminate flares and ghosting. The diaphragm of the lens has nine rounded blades which makes bokeh backgrounds look creamy and smooth.

Due to Vibration Compensation (VC) it gives you the ability to shoot at slower shutters without ruining the sharpness of the image.

  1. Nikon DX and Nikon FX 35mm format compatibility
  2. Durable fluorine coating to repel water and fingerprints
  3. Moisture proof and Dust resistance
  4. 14 elements in 11 groups
  5. Ultrasonic silent drive

3. Tamron 90mm f/2.8 SP AF Di Macro Lens

The Tamron SP (Super Performance) macro lens for Nikon cameras offer a magnification ratio of 1:1 to help you capture even the smallest details. This lens is ideal for close ups and macro photography of still life like flowers.

The SP acronym tells you that this lens has a huge impact on quality. Ensures you in taking high quality images.

If you like to shoot more handheld than with tripod, then, this lens is for you. It is a light weight lens, which makes it easy to hold even when you use it for considerable periods of time.

  1. 9 Diaphragm blades
  2. Focusing distance of 11.4″
  3. Does not have Vibration Compensation (VC) option

Sony macro lens


1. Sony FE 90mm F2.8 Macro G OSS

The Sony FE Macro lens is an extremely sharp lens which help you take awesome and high quality images. Balances sharpness and bokeh perfectly, and assures you in capturing all the details of your subjects in images.

Fast focusing, this means that you can focus on a specific detail of your subject in seconds. And it is versatile due to its Optical Steady Shot option. Ideal for both portrait and macro photography.

  1. Compatible with E-mount lens and full frame format
  2. Internal Focus – Aspherical, ED and Super ED Elements
  3. Minimum Focus Distance of 11″
  4. Nano AR Coating 

2. Sony 100mm f/2.8 Macro Lens for Sony Alpha

The Sony 100mm macro lens offer great working distance so you can capture you subjects without startling them. It is good for both macro and portrait.

With Sony macro lens 100mm you can take sharp images and capture every detail from your subjects, provides a magnification ratio of 1:1.

Due to its older motor, AF (auto-focus) can be very noisy, but in macro photography we often use Manual focus. So, this doesn’t have to be a problem. And also, this doesn’t mean that it’s a horrible lens, offers great quality same as other macro lens.

  1. High contrast and resolution
  2. Focus range limiter speeds up autofocus response
  3. Focus hold button
  4. Super SteadyShot image stabilization system

3. Sigma 105mm f2.8 DG DN Macro Art

The Sigma 105mm macro lens is designed for Sony mirrorless cameras. Also, offers a reproduction ratio of 1:1.

Sigma lens manufacturers added some great features to their newest lens, like, de-clickable aperture ring or additional buttons like AF-lock.

It is a light weight lens, which means, if you like to shoot handheld, will not give you any discomfort. Provides a performance that goes beyond imaginations or expectations.

  1. 17 elements in 12 groups and one special dispersion element
  2. Compatible with all Sony Mirrorless Cameras (E mount)
  3. No optical stabilization
  4. AF-lock button

Final words


Here are the nine best lens picked for you. For further questions, please drop them below and I will be more than happy to help you as soon as possible. Be safe and take care.

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5 Comments

  1. Joanna Howell says:

    Have you any comments on the micro four thirds to Nikon adapter to use with a Sigma 105 lens?

    1. No, but I will look into. Thank you for stopping by.

    2. I you are referring to give a higher magnification, then, yes you can mount The Sigma lens to micro four thirds with a Nikon adapter.

  2. I am trying to choose a macro lens for Nikon Z 6 ii. Can you help?

    1. Hi, and thank you for your interest. For the Nikon Z6 II you can find it here which is compatible with mirrorless cameras. Have a nice day.

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