Best Canon lenses: 20 top lenses for Canon DSLRs

Whether you've just treated yourself to your first Canon DSLR or are looking to build-up your Canon camera kit with a new lens, there's a wide range of lenses out there to suit pretty much any budget and photographic subject. 

Trouble is, it's knowing which lens is a good buy and which one isn't. Don't worry though, as we're here to help guide you through the vast array of optics available to insure you buy the best Canon lens for your DSLR.

We've split this guide into two sections. First we'll look at the best Canon lenses for APS-C format DSLRs like the EOS Rebel T7 (EOS 2000D), EOS Rebel T7i (EOS 800D) and EOS 80D, with these lenses suited (and in a lot of cases, specifically designed for) APS-C sensor DSLRs. On the following page we'll take a closer look at what are the best Canon lenses for full-frame DSLRs – Canon's line of full-frame cameras like the EOS 5D Mark IV

Pretty much all current APS-C format Canon DSLRs are sold with the option of an included ‘kit’ zoom lens. In many cases, you can choose between Canon’s latest 18-55mm or 18-135mm lenses, both of which give solid performance and come complete with image stabilization and virtually silent STM (Stepping Motor) autofocus systems, ideal for both stills and video capture. But a basic standard zoom will only get you so far.

Even with the generous 1.6x focal length multiplier or ‘crop factor’ of Canon EOS APS-C format bodies, the 18-135mm kit lens comes up short in telephoto reach for shooting action sports and wildlife. And both kit lenses lack a seriously wide viewing angle for some landscape and interior shots. You might also need a tight depth of field to blur the background in portraiture and still life images, something the relatively narrow widest apertures of kit lenses struggle to deliver. Another popular lens option is a ‘macro’ optic for shooting extreme close-ups.

The biggest bonus of any interchangeable lens camera is that you can fit the ideal lens for the job at hand, from ultra-wide zoom to super-telephoto, and fast primes in between. In fact, sometimes full-frame-compatible lenses are a better option than dedicated APS-C format lenses.

Lens designations

It’s actually worth getting the designations of lenses clear at this point. Canon’s EF (Electro-Focus) lens mount dates back to 1987 and the 35mm film era. The EF-S variant was launched in 2003, to suit Canon DSLRs with smaller, APS-C image sensors. There are no issues using EF lenses on APS-C format cameras, but you can’t use an EF-S lens on a full-frame DSLR. The classifications used by Sigma are DC (APS-C) and DG (full-frame) and for Tamron it’s Di-II (APS-C) and Di (full-frame).

We’ve put all of the main contenders through their paces with rigorous lab testing and shooting in all manner of ‘real-world’ scenarios

If you’ve got a Canon camera, it might seem sensible to use Canon lenses. However, third-party lenses from the likes of Sigma and Tamron often give similar or even better performance than own-brand Canon lenses, and at more competitive prices.   

We’ve put all of the main contenders in the various categories through their paces with rigorous lab testing and shooting in all manner of ‘real-world’ scenarios. Based on the results, here’s our list of the 10 best lenses to buy for your Canon APS-C format body. We’ve included outright winners in each category, as well as best-value alternatives to suit a tighter budget. 

Best Canon lenses for APS-C DSLRs

A major upgrade from Tamron’s original 10-24mm lens, the new ‘VC HLD’ edition adds image stabilization and a new autofocus system, which is quicker and quieter. Handling is also improved, because the focus ring no longer rotates during autofocus. The good-quality build includes weather seals and a keep-clean fluorine coating on the front element. Image quality benefits from good sharpness and contrast, along with well-contained distortions for an ultra-wide zoom lens, and fairly minimal color fringing. 

Great-value option: Canon EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM 

Not much more than a third of the price of the Tamron 10-24mm, this is a top-value buy. It matches the Tamron’s maximum viewing angle, includes image stabilization and has a compact, lightweight build that’s well matched to bodies like the EOS Rebel T6 / 1300D and EOS Rebel SL2 / 200D

We’ve got so used to autofocus that a lens which you can only focus manually might sound like a retrograde step. However, the huge depth of field enabled by a lens with such a short focal length makes accurate focusing less critical. Better still, the Samyang’s distance scale enables you try traditional focusing methods for landscape and street photography, like setting the hyperfocal distance and ‘zone focusing’. Smart design and high-quality glass help to ensure good image quality, while nano-structure coatings help to keep ghosting and flare to a minimum. 

Great-value option: N/A

Wide-angle prime lenses for APS-C format cameras are practically non-existent. Canon does make an EF-S 24mm pancake lens but, taking the crop factor into account, it’s more ‘standard’ than ‘wide-angle’. 

Now more than a decade old, this was the first enthusiast/pro-grade EF-S standard zoom lens Canon produced. It’s still the best, and the only one to feature a fast and constant (meaning it's available throughout the entire zoom range) f/2.8 aperture. It’s also the most expensive standard zoom for APS-C format Canon cameras, and has enthusiast-friendly features like ring-type ultrasonic autofocus and a focus distance scale beneath a viewing window. Even so, it’s not one of Canon’s L-series (Luxury) lenses, and has no weather seals. Frustratingly, as with the vast majority of non-L-series Canon lenses, you need to buy the lens hood separately. 

Great-value option: Sigma 17-70mm f/2.8-4 DC Macro OS HSM | C 

Relatively compact and lightweight, this Sigma has a variable yet fairly fast aperture rating and delivers impressive image quality, at a bargain price. 

Whereas most APS-C format cameras have a 1.5x crop factor, Canon’s is a little more aggressive at 1.6x, and that makes this Sigma 30mm a particularly good fit as a ‘standard prime’, as its effective focal length works out to 48mm, only marginally short of the preferred 50mm. As one of Sigma’s recent ‘Art’ class lenses, it’s beautifully built and boasts a fast f/1.4 aperture rating. This not only enables fast shutter speeds under low lighting, without needing to push your ISO setting too far, but delivers a fairly tight depth of field, even taking the relatively short ‘actual’ focal length into account. Image quality is very impressive in all respects and, for such a ‘fast’ lens, sharpness remains excellent even at the widest available aperture. Autofocus is also fast, thanks to a rear-focusing mechanism that drives the smaller, rear elements of the lens via a ring-type ultrasonic system. The front element therefore neither extends nor rotates during focusing.

Great-value option: Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM

Unfeasibly small and lightweight, this ‘pancake’ lens measures less than an inch in length and tips the scales at a mere 125g. It doesn’t have a very fast aperture, at f/2.8, but image quality is very good and it’s a great little prime for traveling light, with an ‘effective’ focal length of 38.4mm on APS-C cameras, which is a good compromise between a wide-angle and standard lens.

Canon’s only real ‘superzoom’ lens for APS-C format cameras is the EF-S 18-200mm, which is about 10 years old, has a rather basic autofocus system, and is frankly a bit of a disappointment. This Tamron lens is a much more attractive option. It’s unique among superzoom lenses in shrinking to 16mm rather than the usual 18mm at the short end of its zoom range. A couple of millimeters might not sound much, but the extra wide-angle potential is very noticeable in practice. There’s no skimping at the long end either, with a generous 300mm maximum focal length, far outstripping the Canon. Unusually for a PZD (Piezo Drive) ultrasonic autofocus system (which relies on a small motor rather than a ring-type arrangement), the focus ring remains fixed during autofocus and adds a manual override facility. The only real downside is that, like most superzoom lenses, sharpness drops off a little at the long end of the zoom range, and barrel distortion is quite pronounced at the short end.

Great-value option: Tamron 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC

Remarkably compact and lightweight for a superzoom, the new edition of Tamron’s 18-200mm makes an excellent all-in-one ‘travel lens’, and is unbeatable value at the price.

Compared with budget 50mm lenses, such as the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM, this one is a lot more expensive. Indeed, it’s also pricier than Canon’s faster f/1.4 lens. However, the Tamron is really nicely made, and boasts an optical stabilizer that’s lacking in both Canon 50mm lenses, and most others from the likes of Sigma. It’s full-frame compatible but gives an effective focal length of 72mm on APS-C cameras, ideal for portraiture. As such, bokeh is important, and it’s here that Tamron strikes gold, with defocused areas having a deliciously smooth and creamy appearance, while in-focus areas retain good sharpness.

Great-value option: Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM

The STM (Stepping Motor) edition of Canon’s EF 50mm f/1.8 lens is much better built than its predecessors, with a metal rather than plastic mounting plate, a more well-rounded aperture based on seven diaphragm blades instead of five, and a more refined autofocus system. Image quality is essentially as good as from Canon’s more upmarket 50mm f/1.4 lens, making the f/1.8 STM unbeatable value at the price.

Not to be confused with the preceding Tamron 90mm macro lens of the same name (which had a gold ring around the barrel), this one adds higher-grade glass, dual nano-structure coatings, improved weather seals and a fluorine coating on the front element. More importantly, it has a redesigned autofocus system that’s optimized for close-up shooting, and a new ‘hybrid’ optical stabilizer that counteracts axial shift (up-down or side-to-side movement) as well as the usual angular vibration (wobble). In this respect, it’s similar to Canon’s range-topping EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM lens, but in our tests the Tamron had the edge for image quality, and it's less expensive to buy. 

Great-value option: Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM Macro

It lacks the Tamron’s hybrid stabilization system and weather seals, but has refined handling and delivers superb image quality, all at a knockdown price.

When it comes to telephoto zooms, there’s a lot to be said for buying a full-frame compatible 70-300mm lens. They tend to still be manageably compact and lightweight, and you’ll be cherry-picking the best image quality from the centre of the frame when using a camera with a smaller, APS-C image sensor; and naturally, should you upgrade to a full-frame body in the future you’ll also be able to continue using the lens. This Tamron is a great example of the breed. It has very good build quality, complete with weather seals, and delivers impressive image quality. Further plus points include fast and whisper-quiet ring-type ultrasonic autofocus with the usual manual override, and an effective image stabilizer. Sharpness and contrast are very good throughout the entire zoom range, although, as is typical with telephoto zooms, sharpness does drop off a little at 300mm. 

Great-value option: Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM

Designed exclusively for APS-C cameras, this Canon lens is refreshingly compact and lightweight for a telephoto zoom, although part of the weight-saving is due to it having a plastic rather than metal mounting plate. As with other STM lenses, the stepping motor autofocus system works well for both stills and movies. Sharpness is good throughout the zoom range, even when shooting wide-open, and the image stabilizer is worth about three stops.

So-called ‘fast’ telephoto zooms tend to be fairly big and heavy, with the 70-200mm f/2.8 lenses often favored by pro photographers weighing in at around 1.5kg – that’s a lot of weight to hang off the front of a small APS-C format body like a EOS Rebel SL2 / 200D or EOS Rebel T7i / 800D. An f/stop slower, this lens still offers a constant aperture of f/4 throughout the zoom range, along with L-series trapping like pro-grade build quality, weather seals and optical excellence, but it's a much more manageable package – indeed, it’s only about half the weight of most 70-200mm f/2.8 zooms. Sharpness and contrast are superb, boosted by the use of top-notch fluorite and UD (Ultra-low Dispersion) elements, and the ring-type ultrasonic autofocus system is super-fast.

Great-value option: Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM

A great bargain buy, the Sigma has the faster, often favored f/2.8 aperture rating and is a very good performer, although it lacks weather seals.

Sigma has a history of pushing the envelope when it comes to super-telephoto reach, and this 150-600mm delivers a spectacular effective focal length of 960mm at the longest end of its zoom range when used on an APS-C format Canon body. Even so, its physical size isn’t too monstrous, and it weighs less than 2kg, making it nearly a kilogram lighter than Sigma’s 150-600mm Sport lens. It features many of the same design flourishes as its bigger sibling, including dual, switchable autofocus modes for auto or manual priority, dual-mode stabilization for static and panning shots, and a dual-position autofocus range limiter that can lock out either the short or long end of the range. It also features the same zoom lock mechanism, which enables you to lock the zoom length at any marked (numbered) position between 150mm and 600mm. Performance is very good, from sharpness, contrast and other optical attributes to autofocus speed, stabilization and handling. Overall, it’s a top buy that’s ideal for maximizing your telephoto reach on Canon APS-C format bodies.

Great-value option: Sigma 100-400mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM | C

The maximum focal length is comparatively modest but Sigma’s new Contemporary class super-telephoto zoom is wonderfully compact and lightweight, making prolonged handheld shooting less of a strain.

The sheer resolving power of full-frame Canon EOS bodies like the EOS 5DS and 5DS R, with their 50.6MP image sensors, demand the utmost sharpness from lenses, while even the EOS 5D Mark IV and EOS 6D Mark II have fairly high megapixel counts, at 30.4MP and 26.2MP respectively. But there’s more to a good lens than just its ability to resolve fine detail.

Handling is a key factor in how a lens performs in real-world shooting. You’ll need fast and accurate autofocus, to ensure that you nail defining moments in anything from a fleeting expression in portraiture to action sports and wildlife photography. In handheld shooting, meanwhile, effective image stabilization can make an enormous difference.

And outright image quality is about much more than sharpness. Good contrast is highly desirable, even when shooting wide-open at the largest available aperture. Other attributes we tend to look for are minimal distortion and color fringing, good resistance to ghosting and flare, and reasonably low vignetting (darkened image corners). Increasingly, shortfalls in various aspects of image quality can be corrected in-camera, or in post-processing, but that’s a poor substitute for great optical quality.

Unlike with the systems of some other manufacturers, including Nikon and Sony, you can’t mount a lens that’s designed for a Canon APS-C format body on a full-frame camera

Other facets of image quality are harder to quantify, like ‘bokeh’ (the attractiveness of defocused areas within images). It’s a critical aspect of performance for ‘fast’ lenses that enable a tight depth of field, as well as enabling you to retain moderate shutter speeds even under dull lighting without the need to really push your camera’s ISO setting.

Unlike with the systems of some other manufacturers, including Nikon and Sony, you can’t mount a lens that’s designed for a Canon APS-C format body on a full-frame camera. Shooting in ‘crop mode’ is therefore off the menu, and you’ll need to invest in the right type of lenses. So where Canon, Sigma and Tamron classify their APS-C format lenses as EF-S, DC and Di-II respectively, you’ll need Canon EF, Sigma DG or Tamron Di lenses for a full-frame body.

It’s certainly not always the case that own-brand Canon lenses outperform competitors from independent manufacturers like Sigma and Tamron. Indeed, some of the latest lenses launched by the independents are simply superb, while considerably undercutting Canon glass for price.

Based on our extensive lab tests and ‘real-world’ testing, here’s our top-10 list of lenses that cover a wide range of popular categories, as well as great-value alternatives to suit tighter budgets.

Best Canon lenses for full-frame DSLRs

Canon’s EF 11-24mm lens reigns supreme as the most wide-angle zoom on the market, unless you go fisheye. However, this Sigma comes so close that you’ll hardly notice the difference, and it costs about half the price. Compared with the time-honoured Sigma 12-24mm II, the more recent ‘Art’ edition of the lens has upgraded optics, with an extra-large-diameter aspherical element at the front, plus five top-quality FLD (Fluorite-equivalent Low Dispersion) elements. Fluorine coatings are applied to the front and rear elements, and the mounting plate gains a weather seal ring. The autofocus system is revamped and noticeably faster, and the new lens switches to a constant-aperture design. From an image quality standpoint, sharpness and control of distortions are excellent, and represent considerable improvements over the previous edition. As with many ultra-wide lenses the hood is built-in, offering physical protection to the bulbous front element. However, this means you can’t easily fit filters, unless you go for a system like the Lee Filters SW150 Mk II.

Great-value option: Tamron SP 15-30mm f/2.8 Di VC USD

It’s not quite as ultra-wide as the Sigma, but this Tamron undercuts it for cost while adding optical stabilization and a faster f/2.8 aperture rating.

Sigma’s ‘Art’ lenses promise to unleash photographers’ creative potential, delivering excellent image quality and fast aperture ratings. There’s a large selection of f/1.4 primes in the lineup, including 20mm, 24mm, 35mm, 50mm and 85mm lenses to choose from. This 20mm is not only the widest-angle f/1.4 optic in the range (there’s also a 14mm f/1.8 lens), but is remarkable in combining such a wide aperture with such a short focal length. The no-compromise design and superlative image quality are enabled by an extra-large-diameter aspherical lens; this makes for an undeniably chunky and heavy build, but it’s a feast of a lens.

Great-value option: Irix 15mm f/2.4 Firefly

It lacks autofocus, but this is a fabulous manual-focus lens that’s beautifully built and a real joy to use. The ‘Blackstone’ edition adds a couple of extra luxuries, but the Firefly is unbeatable value.

After 10 years of faithful service, the original edition of this lens was replaced by the Mk II in 2012. As range-topping L-series lenses, both featured weather seals, but the newer version boasted stronger build quality and a string of optical enhancements; to name but a few, the Mk II bumps up the number of aspherical elements from two to three and has two rather than one UD elements, plus a new Super UD element, and an extra diaphragm blade to give a more well-rounded aperture. It’s super-sharp and particularly rich in contrast but, unlike recently launched competitors from both Sigma and Tamron, lacks image stabilization. 

Great-value option: Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2

The G2 (Generation 2) edition of Tamron’s 24-70mm lens combines excellent image quality with a tough build, great handling and image stabilization, the latter of which is lacking in the Canon lens. The original edition of Tamron’s 24-70mm f/2.8 stabilized lens is also still on sale, and rather less expensive to buy.

Photographers looking for a top-quality standard prime for Canon full-frame cameras are usually torn between the somewhat basic and old-fashioned EF 50mm f/1.4 USM, and the outrageously ‘fast’, eye-wateringly expensive EF 50mm f/1.2L USM. The Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM | A is ultimately a better choice than both of them for performance and value, but this Tamron wins out for everyday shooting. It loses two-thirds of an f/stop in aperture rating compared with the Sigma, but is a much more manageable size and weight, and features image stabilization. You could argue that you don’t really need stabilization in such a ‘fast’ lens, but we disagree. Standard primes are often used in preference to zoom lenses on account of their excellent sharpness and minimal distortion, not just for their faster apertures; you might well want to dial in a medium or narrow aperture setting to extend the depth of field, and this is where stabilization can be a huge help in handheld shooting.

Great-value option: Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM

In both our lab tests and real-world shooting experience, the performance of this humble, entry-level lens pretty much matches that of the pricier Canon f/1.4. It’s a crazily good lens at the price.

People often buy a superzoom for holiday and travel photography, the big advantage being that you can fit a single lens onto your camera and be prepared for pretty much any photo opportunity, without the need to carry around a bag full of lenses. Those lenses tend to be relatively compact and lightweight to keep them travel-friendly; by comparison, Canon’s only full-frame superzoom is built like a battleship. It’s not only very sturdy, but it’s also huge, and a real heavyweight at 1,670g. To put that into perspective, it’s more than twice as long and more than twice as heavy as Tamron’s competing 28-300mm full-frame superzoom. On the plus side, image quality is extremely good for a superzoom, although there’s still a little compromise in terms of sharpness and distortions, compared with using two lenses that have more modest zoom ranges to cover the same overall range. Ultimately, it’s only worth considering for event photography, where you might need to quickly switch between wide-angle and telephoto shooting, and everything else in between, with a flick of a wrist.

Great-value option: Tamron 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di VC PZD

It’s much less expensive than Canon’s full-frame superzoom, and much more manageable. Image quality is pretty good overall, but the autofocus system and overall build quality are comparatively basic.

All too often you have to choose between a really fast aperture rating or image stabilization. For example, the Sigma 85mm f/1.4 Art is a great lens for portraiture, but it lacks stabilization. Then there’s the even faster Canon 85mm f/1.2L, which goes overboard and is capable of a depth of field that’s really too shallow for portraiture anyway. Alternatively, you can sacrifice two-thirds of a stop from f/1.4 and add stabilization, courtesy of the excellent Tamron 85mm f/1.8 VC USD. For the first time, however, Canon’s new 85mm f/1.4L IS USM gives you everything. It offers brilliant build quality, stunning image quality, excellent all-round performance, and highly effective stabilization, complete with a fast f/1.4 aperture. Stellar sharpness is maintained right into the corners of the frame, even when shooting at the widest aperture. Equally importantly, the bokeh (quality of defocused areas) is as smooth, rich and creamy as you could wish for from a portrait lens.

Read our in-depth Canon EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM review

Great-value option: Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM

This lens doesn’t have the fastest aperture rating, and it’s not stabilized. However, it’s a really smart buy for a budget portrait lens, combining good sharpness and contrast wide-open with soft and dreamy bokeh.

The latest edition of this Tamron classic undercuts Canon’s range-topping EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM for price, yet goes toe-to-toe in terms of features and specifications. Indeed, the feature list includes a revolutionary hybrid optical stabilization system, which can counteract shift in the vertical and horizontal axes, as well as angular vibration or wobble – this was the Canon’s main claim to fame when it was launched, prior to the arrival of the Tamron competitor. The hybrid stabilization performs better in handheld close-up shooting, but you’ll still need a portrait lens for ultra-close macro shots. 

Great-value option: Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM Macro

It lacks the Tamron’s hybrid stabilization system and weather seals, but has refined handling and delivers superb image quality.

More than a decade old, Canon’s original 70-300mm IS USM lens was really showing its age, with an outdated image stabilizer and sluggish autofocus that struggled to track moving subjects. Launched early in 2017, the Mk II edition represents a major revamp in terms of design philosophy, features and performance. Capturing sporting action and wildlife on the hoof is much easier, thanks to a new and much speedier Nano USM autofocus system that's also much quieter in operation; indeed, it combines all the best bits of ring-type ultrasonic and stepping motor systems in one hit. The image stabilizer gains a full extra stop in effectiveness with a four-stop rating and, perhaps most importantly of all, the revised optical path delivers sharper images with better contrast, especially when shooting with wide apertures in the mid-to-long section of the zoom range; this is an important factor for ‘budget’ telephoto zooms which have a relatively slow aperture rating, requiring you to often shoot at their widest apertures to maintain fast shutter speeds. And for a little extra trickery, there’s a neat digital display on the lens barrel. It’s a bit more expensive than Canon’s previous 70-300mm lens, but a much better buy. One sore point is that the lens hood is sold separately, and the genuine Canon article is outrageously pricey in the UK at around £80 (it's just $ 45 in the USA).

Great-value option: Tamron SP 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di VC USD

As well as being our top pick for APS-C format cameras thanks to its good performance and relatively low price, this Tamron is also a smart budget buy for full-frame bodies. It’s not much cheaper than the Canon lens, but the lens hood is included in the price.

Canon’s cream-colored telephoto lenses practically epitomize professional photography. More than just a style statement, the cream finish is intended to reflect sunlight and minimize the build-up of heat in big lenses that have a large surface area. Unfazed, Tamron’s 70-200mm is back in black, but it’s nevertheless well suited to shooting in any weather conditions, come rain or shine, with a solid metal barrel, a full set of weather seals and a muck-repellent fluorine coating on the front element. It matches the legendary Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM in most areas, and beats it in others. Autofocus performance is lightning-fast and deadly accurate, improving over that of the original Tamron. Image stabilization is simply the best in class for this type of lens, with 5-stop effectiveness and three modes to choose from, including static, panning, and a third option that applies stabilization only during actual exposures, making it easier to track erratically moving subjects. When it comes to image quality, there’s virtually nothing to choose between this lens and Canon’s finest.

Great-value option: Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM

The Sigma is significantly less expensive to buy than the Tamron G2 lens, and delivers very pleasing image quality along with rapid autofocus performance. However, it’s not weather-sealed and the image stabilizer is less effective.

Canon announced this lens five years ago, and it’s interesting to note that Nikon has only just bought a competing 180-400mm lens to the market. Both lenses have the same not-so-secret weapon for extending your telephoto reach, in the shape of a built-in 1.4x teleconverter, or ‘extender’ as Canon likes to call them. So what you have, essentially, is a top-flight 200-400mm zoom lens with a constant f/4 aperture, with the added bonus being that if you need more reach you can simply push a lever to engage the extender, boosting your focal length to as much as 560mm. As with any 1.4x teleconverter, there’s a downside in that your widest available aperture narrows by an f/stop, in this case to f/5.6. It has to be said that, since Canon launched this lens, Sigma and Tamron have brought 150-600mm optics to the market which don’t need an internal teleconverter, but we simply love this lens for its razor-sharp image quality and stunning all-round performance. It’s ‘the’ telephoto zoom to buy if money’s no object, although you'll also want to factor-in the price of a sturdy monopod –- this lens weighs the best part of 4kg.

Great-value option: Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM | S

Sigma’s 150-600mm Sport lens is seriously good, overtaking the company’s Contemporary edition for image quality, overall performance and build quality. It’s nearly a kilo lighter than the Canon at ‘just’ 2,860g and much easier on the wallet.

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