Sony produces a great range of affordable lenses for their A and E-mount cameras. This includes a solid choice of lenses for wide-angle photography. In this guide, we look at the best Sony wide-angle lenses under $500 for your benefit.
When choosing a Sony lens, there are important features to consider. Firstly, look for the inclusion of OSS. This is Sony’s image stabilization technology and helps handheld lens usage. Also, consider the autofocusing.
Whereas some manufacturers like Tamron have designated AF systems, Sony’s are usually internal, and you have to read the product description to see what AF capabilities the lens has. These are the two most important features and have an impact on lens usability.
To get the most useful features like these and others, you don’t always need to spend a fortune. We’ve narrowed down the top Sony wide-angle lenses under $500 and have put together the highlights below.
1. Sony FE 28mm f/2 (Overall Winner)
Our first choice is the Sony FE 28mm f/2. This is an excellent budget lens and is available for Sony full-frame E-mount cameras like the a7 series. It has a good set of features and offers superb image quality.
The external glass features a dust- and moisture-resistant coating which makes it suitable for outdoor usage. Also, it has a robust nine-blade aperture design that allows you to create fantastic bokeh effects for the backgrounds when used at the larger aperture range.
Inside, the lens also contains a range of ED and aspherical elements that provide good image quality and consistent performance. You will also notice minimal distortion and chromatic aberration. Aside from the excellent performance, the Sony FE 28mm f/2 is also lightweight and compact.
For autofocusing, this affordable lens features an internal focusing system that offers quiet and accurate focusing. Finally, it is stylish and has an excellent external design with a textured grip that makes it easy to hold. It is a great wide lens under $500 for full-frame Sony DSLRs.
2. Sony FE 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS
Next, we have a multi-purpose zoom lens that has wide-angle capabilities. The Sony FE 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS is a great kit lens and could be used as your go-to lens for a variety of situations. The versatile zoom range is backed by a myriad of features to improve performance and image quality.
As one of the top Sony wide-angle lenses, this model benefits from OSS which is Sony’s Optical Image Stabilization. This helps reduce camera shake when using the lens handheld. Also, it has an internal focusing system that provides an effective and fast autofocus.
The lens element features one ED (extra-low dispersion) element and three aspherical elements. The ED element helps retain image sharpness and color depth, while the aspherical elements reduce distortions and flare.
At just 295g, this cheap zoom lens is also incredibly lightweight. When using the wide-angle focal distance, we would advise using the detachable lens hood to help eliminate any potential flares. The versatility makes this one of the smartest choices of Sony wide-angle lenses under $500.
3. Sony FE 35mm f/1.8 OSS
The Sony FE 35mm f/1.8 OSS is an excellent prime lens. It is well-known for providing fantastic image quality and performing well with both Sony APS-C and full-frame cameras.
To help when using this lens handheld, it has Sony’s patented Optical Image Stabilization. Also, it benefits from an excellent maximum aperture of f/1.8 which gives extra flexibility and makes it ideal for low-light compositions.
It also features an internal stepper motor for autofocusing which offers quick and accurate autofocusing on both moving and stationary objects. This lens is also extremely lightweight at just 155g and has an overall length of 6.3cm.
The Sony FE 35mm f/1.8 OSS is definitely one of the best Sony prime lenses available and a good choice for wide-angle photography.
4. Sony DT 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 SAM
If you want a versatile lens that covers wide-angle through to telephoto, the Sony DT 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 SAM is a top choice. This is a great multi-purpose lens but still offers consistent image quality and useful features.
It has a decent maximum aperture range of f/3.5-5.6 which helps when using the lens for close-up shots and low-light photos. At 18mm and an aperture of f/3.5, you can create brilliant compositions that still have a decent bokeh effect for the background.
This lens also has the SAM autofocusing system. This is an autofocusing system for the DT range of lenses and allows for fast and accurate focusing on moving objects. The main downside is that this lens doesn’t have any built-in image stabilization. Regardless, it is still relatively easy to use handheld.
As with other good lenses, the Sony DT 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 SAM is lightweight at just 398g. It also has a maximum overall dimension of 8.6cm. If you want a portable lens for multiple purposes, including wide-angle photography, this is a good option.
5. Sony E 20mm f/2.8 (Budget Winner)
Our budget option is the Sony E 20mm f/2.8. This is a brilliant pancake lens that offers ultra wide-angle capabilities for an affordable price. It also has a decent minimum focusing distance of 0.66ft and a magnification ratio of 0.12x which makes it a decent macro lens.
The build quality of this small lens is also great. It has a metal bayonet mount and feels robust despite its diminished size. It also has a robust external design that can withstand marginal adverse weather conditions.
This lens does not feature any image stabilization, but for this focal distance and lens type, it is not usually required. It does have a decent stepping motor for autofocusing, however. This means you can quickly focus in relative silence.
Increase Your Perspective with Sony Wide-Angle Lenses Under $500
Sony is right up there with other lens manufacturers like Canon and Nikon. The wide-angle lenses we have listed are all excellent quality and will allow you to produce high-quality wide-angle photography for an affordable price. If you have the extra cash though and can up your budget a bit, you might want to check out our guide on the best Sony wide-angle lenses under $1000.