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Top 19 Best Macro Lenses For Macro Photography 2019

The best macro lenses for macro and close-up photography. We count down the top macro lenses reviewed by ePHOTOzine.

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If you're looking for the best macro lens, then you've come to the right place. Here at ePHOTOzine, we have reviewed hundreds of interchangeable lenses in our time so when you guys are out shopping for a new lens, you have as much information as possible for making your decisions. Among our large review collection is a rather long list of lenses which are designed to capture excellent macro images and close-up photos. No matter what the weather, it's always a good time to count down the top macro lenses ePHOTOzine's reviewed. So when flowers and other subject start appearing, you're armed and ready with the right photography kit. Macro lenses are great for detailed close-up shots, but can also be used as a portrait lens.


If you don't see one of your favourite lenses on the list, it could be it didn't score high enough or we've simply not put it to the test yet but we're more than happy to hear your suggestions so please feel free to list them below.

If you want to, you can purchase/find more information about each lens listed by clicking the green Amazon buttons featured below each product. It doesn't cost you anything extra when you press our Amazon buttons but by using our Amazon Affiliate links when ordering anything online, you are supporting the site - thank you.

 

 

1. Sony FE 90mm f/2.8 Macro G OSS 

Sony 90mm Macro FE Mount (2)
 

The Sony FE 90mm f/2.8 Macro G OSS is slick in use and produces excellent macro images. The price may be a little on the high side, but on the other hand, there is little choice for the Sony A7 range user, unless we look at less expensive manual focus lenses. Plus, it works so well on the A7R II that it should be an essential buy for those using this particular system. 

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

Tamron SP 90mm F2 8 MACRO 1 1 Di VC USD (3)
 

The Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 VC USD builds on the reputation of its predecessors and definitely coming up to the mark. This one takes performance to a new peak and is very comfortable to use.Overall, it is an outstanding updated macro lens ideal for all short telephoto applications. There does remain the possibility of picking up the previous model at a much lower price, should cost be the main factor for you, but with what this lens has to offer, it's well worth the asking price.

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3. Panasonic Lumix G Macro 30mm f/2.8 ASPH. 

Panasonic Lumix G 30mm Macro F2 8 Lens (4)
 

The Panasonic Lumix G Macro 30mm f/2.8 ASPH is designed to be used with Micro Four Thirds (MFT) system cameras and provides an angle of view equivalent to a 60mm lens on a 35mm camera and life-size magnification at its closest focus distance. It also sports a fast f/2.8 maximum aperture and Mega O.I.S. Image stabilisation. 

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

Canon Ef 100mm Macro High Res

The Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM features optical image stabilisation, life-size magnification, and weather-sealed construction. The EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS features an ultrasonic motor and scored well in our review. 

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

Nikon Nikkor AF S 105mm Micro Lens (4)
 

This Micro lens from Nikon sports a fast f/2.8 maximum aperture, a silent wave focusing motor, which allows full-time manual focus override and Nikon's Nano-Crystal anti-reflective lens coatings. Lifesize magnification is also possible at the lens' closest focus distance.

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6. Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 60mm f/2.8 Macro 

Olympus M Zuiko 60mm Macro Lens Large (6)
 

The Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 60mm f/2.8 Macro lens for Micro Four Thirds (MFT) cameras provides an angle of view equivalent to a 120mm lens used on a 35mm camera, has a silent MSC focusing motor and produces life-size magnification at its closest focus distance.

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7. Sigma APO Macro 180mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM Lens 

Sigma 180mm F2 (6)

 

The Sigma APO Macro 180mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM lens offers life-size magnification with a fast f/2.8 aperture, along with optical image stabilisation to help keep shots steady. The long telephoto reach means you can get close-up shots without having to go too close to the subject, which should mean you can avoid disturbing or scaring any bugs or wildlife.

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8. Canon TS-E 50mm f/2.8L Macro 

Canon TS-E 50mm f/2.8L Macro

 

It has bulk. It has a high price but it has the features. In other words, another of those situations where the feature set and quality are not in question but the price will limit the market to those who really need this as a working tool. It would be very nice indeed to own, but it does need to pay its way, as well as needing a high degree of photographic skill to get the best out of its potential.

Given the need and the cash, the photographer will certainly not be disappointed in the results from the Canon TS-E 50mm f/2.8L Macro lens.

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9. Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro 1:1  

Irix 150mm F2,8 Macro Front Oblique View
 

There is no doubt that there will be many photographers who will be delighted by the arrival of the Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro lens. The greater reach of 150mm will be welcomed, and indeed is highly sought after already as photographers search for legendary long macro lenses from the days of film.

Manual focus can often be the method of choice for macro work, depending upon the techniques needed, but at least can be regarded as a little impediment. This is an excellent addition to the options available, especially perhaps for Pentax users who have had no option at all before this.

A specialised lens to some degree, but one that can be Highly Recommended.

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10. Canon TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro 

Canon TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro

Some lenses gel straight away, others grow on us and this one grows on us very quickly as the new possibilities of mixing a 90mm lens with macro and tilt and shift start to fire the imagination.

This is a specialised optic that would be delightful to own, but at the price level will probably be for professional photographers with particular applications clear in their minds. It will be a workhorse and it will earn money.

In the general marketplace it is expensive, but if it's affordable then it will not disappoint. Canon is to be congratulated for producing such a wide range of specialist tilt/shift lenses that break new ground and push back the boundaries of creativity.

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Comments


BydoR9 8 20 United Kingdom
4 Mar 2019 4:37PM
Sigma 150 macro?
7 Mar 2019 8:57AM

Quote:Sigma 150 macro?


Excellent shout - added. Smile
BydoR9 8 20 United Kingdom
7 Mar 2019 12:37PM
Nice one! GrinGrin
nclark 10 8 1 United Kingdom
10 Mar 2019 10:26AM
I see the ratings are just those from Amazon customer reviews, nothing the do with “tested by ephotozine” (if I’m wrong can you add the links to the reviews).
So you can add the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 30 mm 1:3.5 Macro Lens at the top of the list - 5 stars. Great lens, higher than 1:1 macro.
DPW 2 United States
10 Mar 2019 3:11PM
I realize that Pentax is considered the red-headed step child by many, completely undeserved by the way, but you couldn't find an image of the excellent D FA 100mm f/2.8 Macro WR?
11 Mar 2019 12:46AM
It seems the authors have not heard of the Pentax k-1, a full frame camera.
Your statement 'The Pentax-D FA 100mm f/2.8 Macro WR lens provides an angle of view equivalent to a 150mm on a 35mm format camera when mounted on a Pentax Digital SLR' is just plain wrong.

It provides FOV of 100mm on a 35mm sensor (or film camera). It provides an equivalent of 150mm when mounted on a crop sensor body. Each of the lenses listed would provide a different FOV if mounted on a body with a different sized sensor.

The statement " This is an excellent addition to the options available, especially perhaps for Pentax users who have had no option at all before this." is also incorrect. Pentax have long had a stellar 200mm macro lens, which still fetches high prices because of it's reputation and performance. https://www.pentaxforums.com/lensreviews/SMC-Pentax-A-Star-200mm-F4-Macro-Lens.html

You also left out a lens considered by knowledgeable and reputable sources to be perhaps 'the best lens of all' the Pentax DA35mm macro (designed for crop sensor bodies) Then there are another couple of 100mm Macro lenses and a 50mm macro as well. So much for "Pentax users having no option before this" Hooey. every lens ever made by Pentax will still mount and meter on the latest and every body Pentax has produced. The lens arsenal is vast.
DPW 2 United States
11 Mar 2019 1:43PM
Excellent points all wizofoz. Smile
I realize that, by including "2019," your title implies only current-production lenses. (And I realize you get funding for selling such things.)

But there are many wonderful bargains out there in legacy glass. I'm most familiar with Olympus, but other vendors great legacy macro lines, as well, that can easily be adapted to most mirrorless cameras.

What do you get when you give up autofocus? Often, a full stop of light, as with the wonderful Olympus OM 90mm ƒ/2 Macro lens, and often, better build quality, with solid, metal bodies instead of plastic, and often better image quality, especially for "range specific" macro lenses.

Olympus had a full line of range-specific macro lenses that, within their range, are equal or better than just about anything made today. With the incredible Telescoping Extension Tube (TET), you could go from infinity to a microscopic range of 20:1 magnification, without using a fragile and clumsy bellows. (The Micro-Nikkors are similar, although they require a bellows.) Olympus also had a full range of lighting and positioning paraphernalia for macro.

The best part is that these legacy macro lenses are generally much cheaper than modern equivalents. But I realize they are a non-revenue item for ePhotozine.
Cynog 7 3 United Kingdom
21 Apr 2019 7:48AM
I so agree with the comments above about Pentax. I have the 100 mm, the 50 mm and the 35 mm Limited, all superb lenses. I also have an old A series 50mm f2.8 Macro that performs excellently on the K-1 and K-3. I see that the Canon TS lenses get a good shout, but no mention of the Nikon equivalents. I know you can't include every macro lens, but let's face it, nearly all of them are excellent performers.
cvh01 5
14 Sep 2019 8:52PM
Many of those who want to use macro lenses are looking for image quality, which means measuring and publishing data on vignetting, chromatic aberration, geometric distortion etc. I am prepared (and do) to use a variety of adapters to fit a good lens to my camera to get a flat field with minimum chromatic aberration across that field at 1:1.
This listing provides no data, no ranking of features. Nothing that I can use to choose between them, except the focal length and aperture which I can see on the lens.
Useless.
monobod 11 9 1 United Kingdom
20 Oct 2019 9:03AM
The Pentax DFA 2.8 Macro lens is full frame, not an APS-C as you suggest. It does work on APS-C cameras of course at 1.5x crop but it is a full frame lens working on the K-1 at 100mm. The D in this case means 'Digital'. This is obviously an old review before the K-1???

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