Released in January 2010, Canon Rebel T3i is still a very capable camera with a host of great features. It was one of the best entry-level cameras at the time of its release and officially replaced its predecessor, the Canon T2i/55OD. Both cameras have the same sensor and resolution. However, T3i has additional features such as HD video, articulating touchscreen, filters, shooting, and software enhancements. More importantly, it becomes quite a powerful camera when you pair it with the optional 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS kit lens. Similarly, the best lenses for Canon T3i can be a real boon for you as a photographer.
Best Lenses for Canon Rebel T3i
T3i itself is an excellent camera and can take terrific shots irrespective of the conditions and type of photography. However, it is also compatible with a wide range of excellent lenses that further improve its performance.
Our guide reviews the best of these lenses to optimize your shooting experience with Canon T3i. The following is a brief overview of the lenses we are going to discuss.
|Image||Model Name||Lens Type||Focus Type||Check Price|
Canon EF 16-35mm f/4
Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM
Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L
Canon EF 16-34mm f/4L IS
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM
Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 IS USM
Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM
Canon EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM
Canon EF 16-34mm f/4L IS
Now, let’s start the guide with our number one lens for Canon T3i/600D.
1. Canon EF 16-35mm f/4 USM Lens: The Best lens for T3i Overall
Canon EF 16-35mm f/4 is one of the most popular wide-angle lenses for full-frame cameras. However, it works as a normal lens on Canon T3i and all other APS-C cameras.
The lens offers superior quality with a simple and effective design. It allows one-hand usage while the fingers can easily access the focus ring. It does have a plastic and rubber body that may dissuade some people from purchasing it.
When it comes to electronic autofocus, it is silent and tracks the objects quickly and accurately. Similarly, you can also focus the lens manually. The overall focus is superb and better than many comparable models. The ultrasonic motor lens does not only ensure speed but pinpoint precision as well.
But – you don’t get any depth of field of significant bokeh with this lens. The excellent built-in image stabilization overcomes camera shakes though.
The images are crystal clear and sharp at 35mm but do have negligible distortion at 16mm. The lens excels in all lighting conditions, delivering vibrancy and perfect color balance in all images.
Canon EF-1635mm also has excellent protection against water and dust. Therefore, you can easily use it for outdoors, landscapes, and nature photography.
All in all, Canon EF 16-35mm is an affordable yet brilliant lens for Canon T3i. It delivers excellent images, smooth image stabilization, and matchless autofocus in this price range.
2. Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM: Best Medium Telephoto Camera Lens for Canon Rebel T3i
Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM is a terrific medium telephoto prime lens you can buy. It has several applications such as portraitures, nature, and night photography.
The lens has USM or ultrasonic autofocus with smooth, silent, and very fast subject tracking abilities. Similarly, it creates a stunning depth of field besides taking excellent low light photographs because of its bright and fast f/1.8 maximum aperture.
The lens can also create spectacular bokeh or background blur, helping your subject to stand out. The quality of images is spectacular and consistent throughout the aperture range.
There is also no effect on filter effects while focusing because the front lens group does not rotate. It is a medium telephoto lens but powerful enough to zoom in on faraway objects. It also excels in low light conditions because of its low f-stop as well as 1/3 stop speed advantage.
Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM is one of the best lenses for Canon t3i if you want to capture landscapes, nature, and portraits. It has sufficient focal range to pull distant objects closer. The autofocus is also reliable and fast. Similarly, it is a low light behemoth because of its f/1.8 maximum aperture.
3. Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM: Best Wide Angle Lens for Canon T3i
Canon EF 17-40mm f/4l is another superb wide-angle lens for Canon T3i. It is an L series lens and therefore, it has strong built quality and protection against various weather elements. You can use the lens in the harshest of weather without any problem.
The wide-angle lens enables you to capture stunning landscapes and nature photographs. Similarly, it offers an incredibly wide field of view for adding more people to the image. The diagonal angle of view of 104° is quite impressive. Canon also uses extra-low dispersion glass in this lens to completely eliminate coma from photographs.
The lens also ensures brilliant close-up shots due to the closest focusing distance of only 0.9 feet. The autofocus is not only fast and accurate but it can also focus on objects as close as 11 inches.
The lens features a super UHD glass and three aspherical lenses for improved performance. The powerful f/4 maximum aperture ensures good performance in all light conditions as well.
All in all, Canon EF 17-40mm f/4 is a very powerful lens for nature, landscape, and street photography. It is one of the best wide-angle lenses for Canon T3i in short.
4. Canon EF-S 18-55 f/3.5-5.6 IS II SLR Lens: One of the Best Kit Lenses for Canon Rebel T3i
Canon EF-S 18-55 f/3.5-5.6 IS II SLR Lens is a general-purpose kit lens with the decent optical performance. It is a great choice for beginners, offers reasonable features and does its job particularly well. It is not perfect or flashy by any means but it is lightweight, compact, and more importantly, affordable.
You can take some great shots using built-in image stabilization. Similarly, it has a good focal length for portraits, dioramas, and other subjects. The focal length is, in fact, ideal for Canon T3i and other APS-C DSLR cameras.
Despite being a cheap lens, it has superb autofocus with quick, silent, and reliable performance. The combination of the lightweight lens and the autofocus mechanism delivers beautiful images with sharp details.
The short focal length also helps you get very close to the objects. However, it can have an effective focal length of 29-88mm if you pair it with a Canon teleconverter. Such a focal length is ideal for wide-angle shots.
5. Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM: Best Entry Level Prime Lens for T3i
If you are looking for the best entry-level EOS prime lens, you must consider Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM. The compact and lightweight lens enables you to get going in the world of EOS prime lenses without costing a fortune.
The lens’s features make it the best choice for nighttime, action, and portrait photography. It also gives its best in low light because of the very bright maximum aperture of f/1.8 and 80mm effective focal length on T3i and other APS-C digital cameras.
It also delivers stunning artistic backgrounds with the help of a 7-blade circular aperture. The aperture also captures captivatingly vivid images. A new lens coating provides impressive color balance and details besides minimizing flare and ghosting.
One of the best features of the lens is its STM motor that works silently and accurately for Movie Servo autofocus. As a result, it is a great lens for recording movies. The AF for still images is also smooth and fast.
The manual focus adjustment is a breeze thanks to the easily accessible focus ring. EF 50mm is also the most reliable and versatile fixed focal length lens because of the minimum focusing distance of 1.15 feet and the rugged metal mount. However, some people may find fixed focal length quite frustrating.
The Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM is a high-quality yet unbelievably cheap prime lens. It delivers excellent results such as images with stunning colors and sharp details for just over $100. The autofocus system is fast and smooth for both stills and videos.
6. Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 L IS USM: Best Canon T3i Zoom Lens
Belonging to the legendary “L” series of Canon lenses, the EF 70-200mm f/4 IS USM offers sturdy built quality and excellent performance. It is perfect for every photographer looking for a high-end lens.
The best feature of the lens is its versatile and extremely usable zoom range. You can use this lens to capture intimate portraits, fast-moving objects, or distant objects with the utmost ease without sacrificing details or image sharpness. Your subject would, in fact, never be out of reach because of its extremely wide zoom range.
Similarly, a maximum aperture of f/4 increases the versatility of the lens and improves its performance in different lighting conditions. It is also the first Canon IS lens with 4-stop image stabilization.
Fluorite UD lens elements provide spectacular contrast and resolution besides incomparable optical performance. The USM motor with focusing ring enables full-time mechanical manual focusing and fast and silent autofocusing.
The L series lenses are also famous for their sturdy construction and Canon EF 70-200mm is no exception. It is a waterproof and dustproof lens. Therefore, you can use the lens in all types of weather and environments.
In general, the lens delivers fantastic images in all types of conditions. The excellent AF and image stabilization systems further enhance its performance. The incredibly wide zoom range ensures you can capture both close and distant objects without missing anything.
However, it is also an expensive lens as it would cost you around $1000.
7. Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM: Among the Best All-in-One Canon Rebel T3i Lenses
Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM is one of the best versatile and all-in-one lenses on offer nowadays. It is also a very affordable lens that delivers impressive image quality and a great aperture.
You can easily carry this lightweight and small lens wherever you go. Similarly, the low light performance is quite solid because of the wide f/2.8 aperture and adequate wide angle of 24mm.
Experts love this lens for its optimum clarity and sharpness. It ensures minimum chromatic aberrations across all apertures.
The lens suits a wide range of photography as it comes with an equivalent focal length of 38mm and an advanced autofocus system. The aspheric element as well as the optimized lens placement offer uniform image quality from the image center to the corners. The special coatings also minimize ghosting and flare.
The 7-blade circular aperture delivers fantastic color balance and out-of-focus blur. However, the lens does not have built-in image stabilization, a glaring omission to say the least.
Canon EF-S24mm f/2.8 STM is the best all-in-one lens for Canon T3i. It is an affordable and lightweight lens with quiet, accurate, and fast autofocus. It renders impressive color balance while reducing flare and ghosting. All in all, it produces images of the highest quality for just around $150.
8. Canon EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM: Best Cheap Lens for Canon T3i
Canon EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM became an instant hit at the time of its release. The reasons for its success were affordability as well excellent design and fantastic image quality. It didn’t skimp on all these features like other cheap wide-angle lenses of its time.
The lens has a lightweight and compact body, perfect for DSLRs with crop sensors such as Canon Rebel T3i. It offers a very wide angle of view besides featuring a 4 group optical zoom system. The zoom consists of UD lens elements, a large diameter, and a spherical lens. Similarly, it minimizes aberrations and glares using enhanced lens coating for high-contrast and high-resolution photos.
The superb 4-image stabilization system overcomes any kind of camera shakes with the utmost ease. Similarly, the lens offers a stunning background blur thanks to the 7-blade circular aperture.
The autofocus is accurate and smooth because of a powerful focus mechanism with a stepping motor. You can also make quick adjustments on the move using the full-time manual focus. The lens has rear autofocus for very fast autofocus.
Available for under $300, Canon EF-S 18-35mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM is the most affordable lens in its class. Yet, it does not compromise on design or performance. It offers speed, quiet operation, and more importantly, reliability. It is a lightweight and compact lens, ideal for everyday and travel photography as well as videos.
9. Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM: Best Midrange Standard Lens for T3i
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM should be your choice if you are in search of a midrange standard zoom lens. Some of its best features include excellent image stabilization, aperture, and autofocus systems. These features combine to produce clear, sharp, and natural-looking images every time you shoot.
The high zoom range of 135mm helps you capture even the extremely far away objects and still create stunning images. The built-in image stabilization further minimizes the camera shakes to eliminate image blur.
You don’t need a tripod or flash to capture beautiful photos in the dim light as the lens comes with an impressive maximum aperture of f/3.5. The overall focal length of 28-135mm means your subject is never too far or too close.
The ring-type ultrasonic motor allows full-time manual and fast, silent, and precise autofocusing. The autofocus has a 20° minimum focusing distance. Similarly, it locks onto the moving targets with great precision as well.
Being a standard zoom lens, Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM offer spectacular images and excellent zoom range. It features a superb image stabilization system and robust autofocus. Not to mention, you can use the lens in a variety of conditions such as low light. More importantly, you get all these features for just $175.
10. Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM: Best High-End Lens for Canon T3i
Finally, we have Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM on our list. Designed specifically for Canon DSLRs, it is one of the best lenses for Canon T3i on the market. It is a high-end lens that should be an integral part of your photography kit. It is a wide-angle lens with sufficient zoom to create stunning portraits as well.
The lens has an impressive constant aperture of f/2.8 which makes it even more functional and versatile. The aperture allows the lens to produce beautiful images both indoors and outdoors.
Just like all Canon lenses, this particular lens also has a silent and fast autofocus with a full-time manual focusing ability. Similarly, you can create stunning depth of field and bokeh effect to draw attention to your subject using the large circular aperture.
The image quality is superb and consistent throughout the zoom range thanks to the aspherical and UD elements.
The lens compensates for hand and camera movement with the help of the image stabilization lens group. The result is crystal clear, sharp, and detailed images even in low lighting.
The price of $900 may be unaffordable for some people. However, it is worth its price and maybe the only lens you would need in the near future to create spectacular images.
How to Buy Best Lenses for Canon T3i?
You need to consider many things while shopping for Canon T3i lenses. We are going to discuss the most important of these factors in the following lines.
Modern Canon lenses incorporate different types of motors to function. USM (ultrasonic motor) and STM (stepping motor) are two of the most common and popular of these motors. STM lenses are very quiet and smooth albeit a little slow. They are perfect for general photography and help you record exceptional and smooth videos. USM lenses are way faster than STM lenses and therefore, they are ideal for sports, nature, action, street photography, and everything involving fast-moving objects.
The next big consideration is the type of lens. The most common types of lenses are telephoto, wide-angle, macro, and standard. Each type of lens is ideal for different types of tasks and photography.
Standard lenses produce natural-looking images because their field of view is almost equal to the human eye. They normally have a small, fixed focal length of around 50mm. The wide aperture and fixed focal length make them a brilliant choice for shooting landscape, candid, and portrait images as well as shooting in the dark.
As the name suggests, macro lenses enable you to get incredibly close to the subject. Even at a close range, they offer amazing contrast and sharpness. Similarly, they deliver stunningly details images as well.
The telephoto lenses have a remarkable amount of magnification thanks to their long focal lengths. They are best for capturing rather far away objects. That is why they are widely used for wildlife and sports photography. Portrait photographers regularly use moderate zoom lenses as well.
Wide-angle lenses provide a greater field of view because of their shorter focal lengths. They help you capture wide scenes, landscapes, and panoramas.
There is no standard focal length for the best lenses for T3i. You need different focal lengths for capturing different situations. Ultra wide-angle lenses with a focal range of 8-24mm help you capture wider scenes like cityscapes, landscapes, and panoramas. Wide-angle lenses with 24-25mm focal length are best suited for landscapes, architecture, and interiors.
Standard lenses with 35-85mm focal length are general purposes lenses for everyday photography. They are versatile lenses you can use for various kinds of photography. Similarly, you can shoot terrific candid and portrait images using short telephoto lenses with a focal range of 85-135mm. Medium telephoto lenses having a focal range of 135-300mm are ideal for capturing subjects that are a medium distance away such as sporting events. Lenses having a focal range greater than 300mm are super telephoto lenses used to shoot distant subjects and nature.
The best lenses for Canon T3i come with built-in image stabilization. It compensates for the camera movements at slower shutter speeds to minimize image blurs. Similarly, it also allows you to take sharp pictures at slower shutter speeds without the tripod.
With this, we conclude our guide to the best lenses for Canon T3i. All the lenses in our list further enhance the performance of this already excellent camera. Most of the lenses are not only cheap but easily available as well. Similarly, the provided buying guide will also help you decide which of these lenses you need depending on your budget and the type of subjects you want to capture.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is Canon T3i still a good camera?
Canon T3i is 11 years old but still, it is quite a capable camera with DIGIC 4 image processor and ridiculously low price. It is a great camera for an average user. It has one of the best designs and features of all the entry-level DSLRs. Both novices and photography enthusiasts widely use this camera even today.
2. What lens does a Canon T3i use?
Fortunately, Canon Rebel T3i works will all Canon EF and EF-S lenses. It has Canon’s DIGIC 4 image processor and a powerful 18 megapixel sensor. As a result, it captures stunning high-resolution RAW, JPEG, and JPEG plus RAW images.
3. Is Canon T3i good for beginner photography?
Canon Rebel T3i, the successor of the award winning EOS Rebel T2i, is an ideal camera for beginner photography because of its simple and fun features. Similarly, it is comparatively a cheaper camera, enabling beginners to get going in the world of DSLR shooting without costing a fortune.