Top 23 Best Canon EOS EF Lenses 2020 - Top 13 - 23

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13. Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM

Canon EF 70-200mm F/2.8 L IS II USM Lens


This version of Canon's 70-200mm f/2.8 lens sports fast silent ultrasonic focusing, weather sealed construction and a four-stop image stabiliser and costs around £1800. During testing, this lens proved itself capable of producing sharp, contrasty images at all apertures and focal lengths. It is built like a tank, focuses quickly and the four stop image stabiliser does a superb job of ironing shake. Also worth considering is the 70-200mm f/4 L IS lens.

Overall Score: 

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14. Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM

Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM

Canon's EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM is a popular choice amongst those after 'L' series lens quality, but with a decent zoom range. It's a great all-around standard lens which, apart from covering a useful zoom range, delivers excellent sharpness and is built well enough to take the rigours of daily professional use. The IS performs well but CA levels are disappointing. Having said that, the lens does offer an excellent resolution in the centre throughout the zoom range and good performance towards the edges when stopped down. 

Overall Score: 

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15. Canon TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro

Canon Ts E 90mm F2,8l Macro Top View At Infinity

The Canon TS-E 90mm f/2.8L Macro 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.

Overall Score: 

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16. Canon EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM

Canon 85mm F1,4l Top View


Gorgeous and expensive, the Canon EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM lens is that aforementioned thing of beauty. There is no doubt that it performs superbly and produces exceptional images, efficiently and with outstanding ergonomics. The Canon EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM is a beautiful, high-class, classic focal length lens ideal for portraiture and it will not disappoint. 

Overall Score: 

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17. Canon TS-E 135mm f/4L Macro

1/125 sec | f/3.5 | 35.0 mm | ISO 800

This tilt-shift lens for full-frame cameras has a wide, ribbed manual focus ring. Lens construction is 11 elements in 7 groups, including aspherical and UD (Ultra Low Dispersion) elements. The lens diaphragm comprises 9 blades, although there is no control of the aperture on the lens itself, this being controlled by the camera body. The latest Canon Subwavelength Structure and Air Sphere Coatings are employed. We praised the lens for excellent, even sharpness and low distortion/CA.

Overall score

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18. Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II

Canon TS E 24mm F3 5L II Lens (4)

The Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II is a wide-angle tilt-shift lens that delivers superb clarity and is packaged in a robustly built and well-designed body. The controls for applying lens adjustments are easy to adjust and overall this lens should more than satisfy the needs of anyone after a tilt-shift optic. Image are sharp and CA is extremely well controlled across the entire image area, with fringing remaining below a quarter of a pixel width at all aperture settings. The lens is very resistant to flare, and contrast holds up well when shooting into the light.

Overall Score: 

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19. Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L USM 

Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L USM

Despite its age, this lens is still capable of producing excellent results. The resolution recorded in the centre is high, even at wide apertures and even though the resolution may fall off towards the edges, it's acceptable in use with wide aperture lenses such as this. The lens offers outstanding performance across the frame when stopped down and is very resistant to flare. Build quality is excellent and the lens should be able to withstand the rigours of daily use, along with a bit of rough and tumble, or inclement conditions.

Overall Score: 

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20. Canon TS-E 50mm f/2.8L Macro 

Canon Ts E 50mm F2,8l Top View

It has bulk, it has the features. It has a high price, 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.

Overall Score: 

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21. Canon EF 135mm f/2L USM

Canon Ef 135mm F2 L Usm (2)

This lens has been around for quite some time now but thanks to its performance in our review, it's still worthy of a place on our list. It doesn't feature a weather sealed body like others do further up the countdown but it still manages to hold its own against more modern competition. With fantastic optical quality and build and a reasonable price, the Canon EF 135mm f/2L USM offers very good value for money for a lens that has a fast maximum aperture of f/2, low CA and offers excellent sharpness. 

Overall Score: 

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22. Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM

Canon EF 85mm F1 8 Lens (1)

This medium telephoto lens from Canon sports a fast f/1.8 maximum aperture and ultrasonic silent focusing that is performed internally. This lens is a bargain for those looking for a very capable lens for portraiture that delivers excellent sharpness with low levels of chromatic aberrations and distortion. Also worth mentioning is the good build quality and fast autofocus speeds, making this a compelling choice if you are looking for a lens of this focal length to add to your collection.

Overall Score: 

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23. Canon EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM

Canon EF S 10 18mm IS STM Lens (4)

This lens is the only APS-C lens on the list, the rest are FF, and to say it's so reasonably priced, the image quality it offers is really great. This lens delivers excellent sharpness, low CA and reasonable distortion, which is fantastic for a lens costing under £300. IS performance is good and focusing is fast, plus the lens is lightweight which is never a bad thing. If you don't require a fast maximum aperture for your ultra-wide-angle shots with your APS-C Canon DSLR, then this lens should be more than adequate, whilst keeping some of your hard earned pennies in your wallet.

Overall Score: 

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As well as a Canon lens round-up, we also have a Top 27 Best Portrait Lens feature as well as a Top 15 Wide-Angle Landscape Lens article that is well worth a quick browse. If you enjoy macro photography, take a look at our 10 Best Macro Lenses For Macro Photography to see which macro lenses have made our top 10. 

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Probably sums up why I shoot Canon, glass has the class Wink just wish I could afford the 400mm DO
StrayCat 16 19.1k 3 Canada
Hard to improve on your work Neil.Smile
A interesting list - but is number 11 not bested by the later mk2 model -

Is there a similar list for EOS camera's - regardless of lens manufacturer?
Well, in the 9th row, Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L II IS lens is listed.
In my opinion, Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L II IS lens must be listed instead. Wink
I had used it for a few days and it is really amazing to have f/2.8 at 400mm focal length! Smile
Why arenít you showing the improved Mark II versions on some of these?
Hi John,

If you're talking about the 24-105mm f/4, then the mark II version didn't score as high a rating as the first version of this lens.


What about the 35mm f/1.4L Mark II?
Hi John,

The review of the 35mm f/1.4L Mark II can be found here:

It didn't score are high overall, due to the price compared to the original.
I rented the 35mm f/1.4L Mark II a couple years ago for a wedding after looking at the test results compared to the previous version on

Iím most concerned with final IQ, and this lens seemed to be the best available for Canon by a long shot. I was extremely pleased with the wide open results, when the AF nailed focus. Iíd not hesitate to buy it if I had the need to use it more often, but I rarely shoot weddings and low light events, so renting makes more sense.

I have several questions about this list.

Why is the Canon 50 mm f /2 not included on this list?
Why are the f4 versions of the version ii lenses represented over the f 1/2/4/8?
The wider open and faster shutter speed does make a difference and if at all possible will not purchase a 4L and above if I can afford it. Too frequently I regularly find circumstance where I need the extra specs.


Quote:Hi John,

The review of the 35mm f/1.4L Mark II can be found here:

It didn't score are high overall, due to the price compared to the original.

Hi Josh.
Wondering if your 35 L ii copy was ok. It is one of the best lense ever ((many other websites claim that too). I own it myself and it is really an impressive lense, especially at 1.4
Strange it is not in the top 18 (price is a thing but quality is exceptional).
I have 4 out of the 20 and looking to add a 5th which is also in the list.
Bit of a shame that all but two of these are L lenses. I dream of being able to afford L glass, but budget won't allow it. I put an EF-S 17-55mm f2.8 on the credit card, and that was pushing things!!

Not all us photographers can afford stuff like this - how about a round up of best budget Canon glass?

Quote:Not all us photographers can afford stuff like this - how about a round up of best budget Canon glass?

We can do that Smile

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