5 Sony a6000 Lenses You Need (APS-C Alpha e-Mount) in 2024

March 19, 2024
Featured image for “5 Sony a6000 Lenses You Need (APS-C Alpha e-Mount) in 2024”

The Sony a6000 has celebrated a decade since its launch, yet it remains the most popular mirrorless camera ever sold. If you’re picking up a new camera from the Sony A6000 series, like the Sony A6600, it typically comes with a starter kit lens. This initial lens is decent for beginners, but you might find yourself craving more—be it a broader zoom, quicker aperture, or superior image quality.

Having captured over 5,000 shots with this impressive device, I’ve pinpointed the top lens choices for Sony a6000 users.

A diverse array of lenses fit Sony A6000-series cameras perfectly, ranging from standard zooms and wide angles to telephotos and primes. Let’s dive into the options!

What are the Best Lenses for Sony a6000 in 2024?

Having taken over 5,000 shots with the Sony a6000, I’ve got a solid grasp on which lenses elevate this camera to its full potential. Below are my top five lens picks tailored for Sony a6000 users.

These lenses are all Sony APS-C E-mount and compatible with any Sony mirrorless camera, though they shine brightest with the Sony A6000. To offer you a broader selection, I’ve also included some top-notch, budget-friendly lenses from other brands that pair wonderfully with the Sony a6000.

1. Sony E 35mm f/1.8 OSS: Best All-Around Prime Lens for Sony a6000

Prime lenses are a must-have for photographers at any skill level, and I highly recommend them. They push you to refine your composition by limiting you to a single focal length, unlike zoom lenses, which offer more versatility but can complicate the composition process.

That’s not to say zoom lenses don’t have their place, but every photographer should experience the simplicity and challenge of using a prime lens. For Sony a6000 owners, the Sony E 35mm f/1.8 OSS lens is the prime lens.

Why Choose the Sony E 35mm f/1.8 OSS Lens?

  • Compact and Portable: Perfectly complements the Sony a6000’s small size for a lightweight setup.
  • Versatile Focal Length: Provides a 50mm equivalent field of view on the a6000’s cropped sensor, ideal for various photography styles, especially flattering portraits.
  • Fast Lens Advantage: The f/1.8 aperture improves performance in low light conditions and achieves beautiful background blur.

Key Features of the Sony E 35mm f/1.8 OSS Lens

  • Sharpness and Clarity: Exceptional image quality from f/1.8, peaking at f/4.
  • Optical SteadyShot (OSS): Offers image stabilization to produce crisp images even in low light.
  • Value for Money: Though priced around $400, it significantly enhances the a6000’s capabilities.

In summary, the Sony 35mm f/1.8 lens is unmatched for a6000 users looking for a compact, high-quality lens setup. It’s an ideal travel companion and undoubtedly the best 35mm lens for the Sony a6000, offering exceptional optical performance in a small package.

2. Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN: Best for Portraits with Sony a6000

Sigma’s lens stands out in our top picks for the Sony a6000, offering a pleasant surprise. It is a reminder that mixing brands between cameras and lenses can lead to impressive results.

Had this Sigma lens not been on the scene, the Sony 50mm f/1.8 OSS, known for its speed, image stabilization, and excellent value (especially after its price drop to under $300), would have been my pick.

But the Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN shifts the game. It emerges as the premier portrait lens for Sony a6000 users.

Why the Sigma 60mm Over the Sony 50mm?

  • Speed and Stability: While the Sony 50mm f/1.8 OSS is known for its image stabilization and speed, the Sigma offers unique advantages.
  • Value Proposition: The Sigma 60mm stands out, especially after Sony’s 50mm price drop, offering a superior choice for those seeking quality and affordability.

Key Features of the Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN

  • Ideal Focal Length: With a 90mm equivalent on APS-C, it avoids distortion and delivers perfectly proportioned subjects.
  • Versatility: Not just for portraits; it also excels in capturing stunning landscapes.
  • Build and Autofocus: Lightweight yet sturdy, with silent and smooth autofocus, making it friendly for photography and videography.
  • Sharp and Vibrant: Produces sharp images with rich contrast and colors straight from the camera.
  • Bokeh and Optical Performance: F/2.8 aperture creates pleasing background separation with minimal optical flaws.
  • Affordable Excellence: Priced under $250, it’s a steal for the quality it delivers.
  • Compatibility and Style: Available in black or silver to complement your Sony a6000, ensuring you select the ‘Sony NEX’ mount for compatibility.

3. Sony FE 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS | Best Zoom Lens for Sony a6000

Diving into the world of Sony a6000-compatible lenses, you might find yourself tangled in a web of complex abbreviations and terms. For this guide, the essential terms are ‘FE’ and ‘E.’

The ‘FE’ in this lens’s name signifies it’s designed for Sony’s full-frame E-mount cameras, a tier often associated with professional photography. It’s typically bundled with the Sony a7 series.  So, why recommend it for the a6000?

Ordinarily, I don’t suggest ‘FE’ lenses for the APS-C sensor a6000 due to their higher cost. However, the Sony FE 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS is an excellent deal. Priced at under $300, it’s a steal and complements the a6000.

Key Features of the Sony FE 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS

  • Adaptable Focal Range: Offers a 40-105mm equivalent on the a6000, covering a wide range of shooting scenarios.
  • Image Quality: Delivers sharp, vibrant images with the potential for beautiful bokeh, focusing on performance over wide angles.
  • Optical Steady Shot: Minimizes blur from hand movements, enhancing clarity, especially in zoomed-in photos.
  • Weather-Sealed Design: This adds durability, which is beneficial for future full-frame upgrades as the a6000 itself is not weather-sealed.

This lens is a prime contender for those seeking a top-tier zoom lens for the Sony a6000 without breaking the bank. It offers excellent value, and its broad focal range also simplifies your lens lineup, potentially replacing two or three other lenses. This makes it a budget-friendly choice and a versatile, all-purpose lens for any Sony a6000 user.

4. Rokinon 12mm f/2 NCS | Best Wide Angle Lens for Sony a6000

Once you’ve enriched your lens collection with a prime and a telephoto zoom, the next treasure to seek is a wide-angle lens. For Sony a6000 users, an ultra-wide lens like the Rokinon 12mm f/2 NCS is a must-have.

Designed specifically for mirrorless cameras, ensure you pick the version compatible with the Sony a6000. This lens is a favored choice for those looking to expand their view.

Key Features of the Rokinon 12mm f/2 NCS

  • Versatility in Use: It is not just for landscapes; its wide angle allows for immersive storytelling with minimal distortion.
  • Manual Focus Mastery: Although manual, the lens’s focus range simplifies use, making it less daunting than expected.
  • Bright Aperture: The f/2 aperture supports shooting in lower light conditions without sacrificing quality.
  • Image Quality: Delivers sharp, clear images with high color accuracy and contrast, impressing with minimal distortion.
  • Affordable Excellence: This option is more budget-friendly than Sony’s wide-angle lenses without compromising speed.
  • Manual Focus Advantage: While lacking autofocus, manual focus is not a significant drawback due to the lens’s wide-angle nature and excellent optical quality.

For those aiming to capture more of the scene and enrich their storytelling, the Rokinon 12mm f/2 NCS stands out as the best ultra-wide angle lens for the Sony a6000. It’s an investment that expands your photographic horizons and lets you narrate more with each shot.

5. Sony E 20mm f/2.8 | Best Travel Lens for Sony a6000

Pancake lenses are a fascinating category, offering supreme compactness and stealth for photography, a feature I adore. Canon has its version, and Sony joins the club with this sleek, ultra-slim lens.

Weighing in at just 69g (0.15 lbs) and not much thicker than a lens cap, the Sony E 20mm f/2.8 pairs perfectly with the Sony a6000 or any Sony mirrorless camera with a cropped sensor. It’s my top recommendation for those seeking the best travel lens for the a6000, or for any scenario where minimizing size and weight is key.

Key Features of the Sony E 20mm f/2.8

  • Perfect Pairing with Sony a6000: Enhances the camera’s compactness, making it an excellent travel lens.
  • Balancing Size and Performance: Offers a 30mm equivalent field of view, suitable for spontaneous street photography.
  • Versatility in Compact Form: Though it may sacrifice some image quality for size, its suitability for everyday shooting is clear.
  • Adjusting for Sharpness: Optimal performance at around f/5.6, with some distortion and sharpness issues at wider apertures.
  • Post-Processing Flexibility: Minor image quality concerns can be corrected during editing.
  • The Best of Both Worlds:  This lens maintains the Sony a6000’s compact nature without compromising on quality, standing out as a unique choice for photographers valuing minimalism and mobility.

If you’re looking for a lens that maintains the Sony a6000’s ethos of compact, quality shooting, this is it. While there may be optically superior Sony lenses, none offer the discreet, cap-like convenience of the Sony E 20mm f/2.8.

The Bottom Line

In my guide to the top lenses for the Sony a6000, I’ve focused on options that resonate with the camera’s affordable price. It makes little sense to me to pair a camera priced around $500 with lenses that cost two to three times more.

Moreover, I’ve selected lenses that complement the compact form of the Sony a6000, avoiding any that would feel oversized or awkward, although this was a bit challenging with zoom lenses.

Sony’s E-mount lens lineup was tailor-made for its mirrorless cameras, ensuring a harmonious performance with models like the Sony a6000. A glance at user reviews for these lenses typically reveals high ratings, a testament to their quality and compatibility.

Narrowing down to just 5 standout lenses from such a robust collection took a lot of work. Yet, I’m confident that the ones highlighted in this guide will serve you and your Sony a6000 exceptionally well, enhancing your photography journey with this remarkable little camera.


About the Author