Best Lenses for Night Photography

10 Best Lenses for Night Photography In 2022

Are you thinking about purchasing a new camera and confused about the endless choices for the best lenses for night city photography? If so, you have come to the right place because you will find all the information here!

In this article, we will discuss all about the best night lens. We will also cover the following details about these topics:

  • Uses of camera lenses
  • Types of camera lenses
  • Features in the best lens for night sky photography
  • Buying guide
  • Frequently Asked Questions

Lenses are the most significant part of a camera device. They are used to capture the light and focus it on a small spot at the back of the camera. All types of cameras whether they are Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR), mirrorless or film cameras need lens to capture the photos. Without the lens, the camera has no meaning at all because you cannot capture any photos or videos with it. So, let’s start this guide about the best lens for night city photography!

Use of Camera Lens

The basic purpose of a lens is to bring in the light from the surroundings and send it towards the back of the camera where an image is formed. The amount of light entering the camera and type of image formed is dependent upon the lens. There are various types of lenses available on devices like wide angle lens, telephoto lens, night photography lenses, etc. A lens is usually included in smaller digital cameras and mobile phones but professional devices like DSLRs often require you to purchase a lens separately depending on your need.

10 Best Lenses for Night Photography

The following are the best lenses for taking stunning photos in the night.

ImageModel NameLens TypeMountFocus TypeCheck Price
Sigma 85mm f1/4
Sigma 85mm f1/4


Telephoto


Canon EF


Auto Focus


Check Price
Rokinon 12mm f2.0
Rokinon 12mm f2.0


Wide Angle


Sony E


Manual


Check Price
 Sigma 20mm f1.4
Sigma 20mm f1.4


Standard


Nikon F


Auto


Check Price
Nikon AF-S 20mm f1.8
Nikon AF-S 20mm f1.8


Wide Angle


Nikon DX


Ultrasonic


Check Price
 Sigma 24mm f1.4
Sigma 24mm f1.4


Wide Angle


Canon EF


Auto/Manual


Check Price
Rokinon AE14M-C 14mm f2.8
Rokinon AE14M-C 14mm f2.8


Wide Angle


Canon EF


Manual


Check Price
Canon EF-16-35mm f2.8
Canon EF-16-35mm f2.8


Wide Angle


Canon EF


Auto


Check Price
Sony FE 16-35mm f/2.8
Sony FE 16-35mm f/2.8


Wide Angle


ALC-SH149


Auto


Check Price
Rokinon HD8M-C 8mm f3.5
Rokinon HD8M-C 8mm f3.5


Wide Angle


Canon EF


Manual


Check Price
Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8
Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8


Wide Angle


Canon EF


Autofocus


Check Price

1.     Sigma 85mm f1/4: Best Lens for Night City Photography

best lenses for night photography

This lens is a powerful product from the Sigma brand. It is a telephoto lens and has a focal length of 85mm. It has a special Hydro Sonic Motor (HSM) which is helpful to produce excellent autofocus results. The speed is improved almost 1.3 times as compared to the previous models by Sigma. There is also a special low dispersion (SLD) glass that produces mind-blowing bokeh effects in the pictures. Bokeh effect is the combination of blurred and clear elements in a picture that is an essential characteristic for the best lens in for night photography.  It shows excellent photos in night time and especially rainy conditions.

The lens can be used with the MC-11 converter so you can plug in this equipment on Sony, Canon, Nikon or any other camera device. There are 9 aperture blade settings and the Modulation Transfer Function (MTF) allows the lens to function with any megapixel range. Extensive testing goes on this technology in the production of these lenses. This night lens is priced at $1100 but it has all the qualities to justify this price tag. It has an inbuilt USB dock which can be used to update the software for the various aperture and autofocus settings. Packing all these features, it is surely not a product to be missed.

Pros
  • Has HSM motor system
  • Low dispersion glass for better pictures
  • Incredibly fast autofocus speed
  • Great bokeh effects for night photography
Cons
  • Expensive lens
  • Design is very basic

2.     Rokinon 12mm f2.0: Best Lens for Night Sky Photography

best lenses for night photography

This beautiful lens is made by Rokinon and has a focal length of 12mm. It is specially designed as a wide angle lens so you can take excellent photos of nature in daytime or night. The lens can be used on Sony cameras that have e-mount. The filter size is 67mm and maximum diameter is 72.5mm for this device. Costing only $320, it is one of the best lenses for night sky photography. The petal shaped front and red lining on the back makes it an elegant device to attach with your camera. The glass is coated with nano crystals which enables highest amount of light to enter it.

There are 3 lens sections in this device, 2 aspherical and 1 ED that produce crisp photos. You can view a massive 110° with this wide lens to cover a large area in a single photograph. Users can purchase protective pouch for $14 and UV filter for $7 so that the lens is always safe and secure wherever you go. Overall, it’s a brilliant device if you are a nature and photography lover!

Pros
  • Good for wide angle photos
  • Stylish design
  • Affordable price
  • Nano crystals coating on glass
Cons
  • Filter size is small
  • No motor in the lens

3.     Sigma 20mm f1.4: Best Lens for Star Photography

best lenses for night photography

This lens is a fantastic product from the Sigma Company. The lens is standard type and has a focal length of 20mm. It has a special Hydro Sonic Motor (HSM) which is helpful to produce excellent autofocus results. With F1.4, it has largest aperture size for a camera with 20mm lens. The speed is improved considerably as compared to the previous models by Sigma. There is also a special low dispersion (SLD) glass that reduces the blurriness in pictures.

In night photography, various effects play a key role to enhance the pictures. Bokeh effect is one of these because it is preferred in low light conditions. When we compare a normal photo with a bokeh snap, there is a huge difference in image quality.

This price of this night lens is $810 and but it is totally worth it. The lens can be used with the MC converter so you can plug in this equipment on Sony, Canon, Nikon or any other camera device. There are 7 aperture blade settings and the Modulation Transfer Function (MTF) allows the lens to function with any megapixel range. Rigorous testing goes on this technology in the production of these lenses. The design of this lens is amazing because it fits perfectly on any camera and looks elegant as well. You should surely check out this device as you will not be disappointed!

Pros
  • HSM motor for advanced control
  • Low dispersion glass
  • MTF function
  • Inbuilt USB dock
  • Bokeh effect
Cons
  • High price tag
  • Lens is not wide angle

4.     Nikon AF-S 20mm f1.8: Best Lens for Landscape Night Photos

best lenses for night photography

The Nikon AF-S FX is a 20mm lens specially designed for Nikon cameras. It is an ultra-wide lens suitable to capture the city views or skies in the open. Priced at $800, it is one of the most brilliant night photography lenses due to its excellent specifications. Due to the f/1.8 aperture size, it performs well in low light conditions whether you are capturing a moment or recording a video. It is a small and light weight device so travellers can carry it easily.

Due to its advanced NIKKOR lens glass, maximum amount of light enters the camera to produce some of the most vibrant photos. It has a 94 degree view and the minimum autofocus distance is 7.8 inches which allows users to gain a good view over their scene. The lens uses ultrasonic waves to deliver extremely fast autofocus so you cannot miss anything in front of it. The product comes with covers for both front and back of the lens as well as a case for safe storage.  

Pros
  • Premium lens brand
  • High quality glass
  • Uses ultrasonic waves for autofocus
  • Decent aperture size
Cons
  • Low angle of view
  • Price is high
  • Limited compatibility with different cameras

5.     Sigma 24mm f1.4: Best Lens for Night Sky Photography

best lenses for night photography

The Sigma 24mm is a wide-angle lens made for Canon cameras. Just like other Sigma night lenses, it has a special Hydro Sonic Motor (HSM) which is helpful to produce excellent autofocus results. With f/1.4, it has a large aperture size for a camera with 24mm lens.

With the low dispersion glass, you get awesome bokeh effects that blur certain elements of the picture. Bokeh effect is highly valued by professionals who want the best lens for night sky photography.  It helps to reduce the glare due to the bright lights at night.

This lens is priced at $850 but you should not forget the features that you get for the price. It can be attached to the standard connectors so you can connect it with different types of cameras. With more than 6 aperture blade, you can control the exact amount of light entering the lens. These blades are tested thoroughly during the manufacturing process. Software can be updated through the USB connection. Surely, this is a lens that you cannot afford to miss.

Pros
  • Has HSM engine for optimised performance
  • Fast shutter speed
  • Great autofocus
  • Low dispersion glass
  • Great aperture size for night photography
Cons
  • Only for Canon cameras
  • Price tag is high

6.     Rokinon AE14M-C 14mm f2.8: Best Lens for Low-Light Conditions

best lenses for night photography

This compact and elegant lens is made by Rokinon brand and has a focal length of 14mm. It is specially produced as a wide angle lens so you can take excellent photos of nature in daytime or night. The lens can be used on Canon digital cameras and it costs around $400. There are 6 diaphragm blades and maximum diameter is 87mm for this device.

Professional photographers rate it as the best lens for star photography. The petal shaped front and red lining on the main section is enough to keep your eyes attached to this device. Nano crystals on the glass housing protect it from dust and enable clearer pictures in any condition.

Multiple aspherical and ED elements in the lens compartment allow the user to precisely adjust the exposure and aperture parameters. You can view a massive 110° with this wide lens. As a result, you can include all gang in a single photograph. Users can purchase extra accessories for a few extra bucks so this makes it a very handy lens. Overall, it’s a brilliant device if you are a nature and photography lover!

Pros
  • Low price
  • Attractive design
  • Multiple autofocus settings
  • Good low-light performance
Cons
  • Limited compatibility
  • Limited controls on the lens

7.     Canon EF-16-35mm f2.8: Best Wide-Angle Lens for Sky Photography

This stylish device by Canon is an ultra-wide lens having a focal length of 16-35mm. It has a customised design for producing sharp and crisp photos. The lens is dust and water proof so all nature lovers can use it freely in any weather condition. The aperture has 9 blades that contribute towards the crystal clear photos. Due to these characteristics, it is one of the best lenses for night sky photography.

The price of this product is almost $2000 which makes it one of the most expensive night lenses. Make sure that you know the use properly because you would not like to spend that much amount without a purpose!

In outdoor photographs, glare and reflections cause a lot of problems to the user. Fortunately, this Canon lens has special subwavelength and air sphere coating that can handle the glares even in the brightest of sunlight. The glass is also coated with fluorine to keep it clean. The 16-35mm focal length enables you to take excellent images indoors as well. Therefore, if you are looking for a beastly device that can capture every moment to the fullest, make sure to check out this product.

Pros
  • Dust and water proof device
  • Large focal length
  • Special coating on glass
  • Brilliant performance in blurry, night conditions
Cons
  • Extremely expensive lens
  • Limited compatibility

8.     Sony FE 16-35mm f2.8: Best Night Lens Overall

Sony FE 16-35mm f/2.8 is yet another great wide-angle lens a variable focal length of 16-35mm. It has a filter diameter of 82mm. Boasting a ton of features, this is one of the best lenses for night photography! It has 2 aspherical elements in the lens that produce precise replicas of the actual scene. With the f/2.8 aperture, the exposure is maintained whether you are shooting videos or taking still pictures. The lens has Sony’s G Master design that has convenient controls on the device. These include autofocus, zoom settings and mounting controls on the lens.

Weighing only 1.5 pounds, this night lens is very easy to carry anywhere. Hikers and mountaineers can use it on their trips to capture the beautiful nature along the way. Sony’s special technology enables high quality bokeh effects that are ideal for night time sky photography. The cost of this lens is $2000 which makes it an expensive device. However, it is packed with features so you will get a lot for what you pay!

Pros
  • Lightweight device
  • Multiple controls on the lens
  • Ergonomic design
  • Great aperture for night photography
Cons
  • Expensive lens
  • Limited compatibility with different brands

9.     Rokinon HD8M-C 8mm f3.5: Most Affordable Night Lens

This round and stylish lens is made by Rokinon brand and has a focal length of only 8mm. It is specially produced as a wide angle lens so you can take excellent photos of natural landscapes or indoor events. The lens can be used on Canon digital cameras and it costs only $200.  There are 6 diaphragm blades and maximum diameter is 87mm for this device.

Professional photographers have termed it the best lens for night city photography. The compact design and red border enhances the look of this lens. The glass protrudes outwards just like a fish eye which gives this lens a unique look.

There are 3 lens sections in this device, 2 aspherical and 1 ED that produce crisp photos. You can view a wide field thanks to 167°. Users can purchase a 128 GB memory card so that a large amount of photos are always safe and secure wherever you go. If you are thinking of capturing every moment in the best possible way, this is the lens you should go for!

Pros
  • Cheap device
  • Unique fisheye design
  • Multiple diaphragm blades
  • Good for night lens
Cons
  • Only usable with Canon devices
  • Focal length is fixed

10.  Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8: Best Lens for Night City Photography

This handy device by Canon is a wide angle lens having a large focal length of 24-70mm. It has a customised design for producing sharp and crisp photos. The lens is dust and water proof so all nature lovers can use it freely in any weather condition. The aperture has 9 blades that contribute towards the crystal clear photos. Due to these characteristics, it is one of the best lenses for night sky photography.

The price of this product is almost $1350 which is one the higher side for these types of lenses. If you are spending this much amount, you should do careful research on the features so that you do not regret later on.

This lens has a large focal length which can be used for taking telephotos as well. The 24-70mm focal length enables you to take excellent images indoors as well. It also gives you more options to adjust the type of image formed on the camera. Therefore, if you are looking for a beastly device that can capture every moment to the fullest, make sure to check out this product.

Pros
  • Large lens diameter
  • Wide range of focal lengths
  • Wide angle
  • Suitable for outdoor and indoor photography
  • Premium look
Cons
  • Price is on the higher side
  • Limited to Canon devices

How to buy best lens for night photography?

While searching for the best lenses for night photography, make sure to keep these things in mind.

Aperture Size

The aperture is one of most critical aspects when selecting a night lens. Aperture is the opening or mouth of the lens. Large aperture allows large amount of light to pass through resulting in bright images and small aperture allows limited light to pass through. When the aperture size is large, there is a high amount of background and front blur which can be useful sometimes. Smaller aperture results in sharper photos.

In terms of f numbers, the number f/2.8 means a larger aperture size than f/4. Therefore, in night photography, usually you should buy a lens with large aperture size. It should be at least f/2.8 or higher.

Focal Length

This is also a useful feature to look for in lenses. It indicates the distance from the point where light enters the lens and the image is formed on the focal plane. We can get to know the angle of view from this length. If the focal length is high, the angle is small but the amount of magnification is high. For smaller focal lengths, the view becomes wide and magnification becomes lower.

Users should choose the lens according to their requirement. If you take landscape photographs often, you would need wide angle lens that has smaller focal lengths usually ranging from 14-35mm. If you take indoor picture more often, standard lenses with larger focal lengths would best suit your purpose.

Lens Material

Most modern lenses have advanced coating on the glass that helps in reducing the blur and glare effects. It also helps increasing the amount of light entering the panel by using special wavelength coatings. If you are looking for the best lens for star photography, make sure that you check the lens material properly.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • What type of lens is best for night photography?

If you are looking for the best lens for night city photography, you need a device that has good low light performance and fast aperture settings. There should be ample amount of light entering the lens so the aperture size should be large, ideally f/2.8 or higher. The focal length should be at least 16-35mm if you are aiming for a standard photo.

  • What F stop is best for low light?

The F stop values should be higher in low light conditions. Usually, these are f/2.8, f/1.8 or f/1.4 because it means that the lens opens more and takes in more light. The shutter speed is also fast so the images are more stable.

  • Are DSLR good for night photography?

A decent DSLR can serve as a good camera for night photography. Most of the devices have interchangeable lens so you can attach any night lens on it. If the DSLR has good processing power, then the lens can do the rest of the tasks easily so you can buy any DSLR to capture beautiful photos at night.

  • How do you fix low light photos?

There are many different elements that you have to look for in the photos. Firstly, the subject of the picture is to be adjusted by setting the exposure properly. Contrast can be increased to give proper light to the photo. White balance and noise levels can be adjusted to make the photo better as well. Most of these things can be set in any editing software.

Final Thoughts

Lens is the backbone of any camera and you have to spend a lot of time researching it. For professional photographers, it is as much important as the camera itself. Due to this, sometime the lenses are more expensive than the camera that shows how important they are for photography. The night photography lenses need to have brilliant low light performance as well as a decent aperture size so that sharp pictures can be taken. Bokeh effects are also useful in night time pictures because they display beautiful scenes with lights.

In this article, we have explored the 10 best lenses for night photography by comparing their salient features like focal length, aperture size, filter dimensions, glass quality, autofocus settings and many more aspects. The night lenses start from $200 and go up till $2000 so there is a massive price difference between the devices.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.