Why you need a 50mm lens in your camera bag

The 50mm lens is a classic, no one will argue that. But what they will argue is which is best? Well there’s plenty to choose from but let’s look at why you need a nifty fifty in your kit bag.

It’s Sharp

Sharper than a butcher’s blade! Prime lenses tend to be sharper than zoom lenses. One thing you are guaranteed when using a 50mm lens (or any other prime lens) is that it will blow the aperture blades off your kit lens when it comes to sharpness and overall optical quality.


Sharp! Picture courtesy of Jack Zimmermann

 It’s a Low Light Master

Most prime lenses are far less complicated to build and therefore have a lot larger maximum apertures. The 50mm even in its cheapest form has a massive f/1.8 aperture. This will let you shoot photos you didn’t think possible. It eats light for breakfast and will give you shots in low light when the only shots your kit lens would give you are blurry or grainy.


Light Weight 

Another great feature of this prime lens is that it’s very light, will take up no room whatsoever in your camera bag and will complement the lenses you already own beautifully.


It’s as light as a feather. Picture thanks to Kevin Shine

Whenever you’re in low light or want to isolate a subject from the background the 50mm will be your go to lens.

Dreamy BOKEH


Taken at f1.8 with the Canon 50mm “nifty fifty”.

I have a confession to make, I’m addicted to bokeh. There I said it. I know I’m not alone in this addiction and if you haven’t experienced the delights of bokeh then the 50mm will take you to new photography highs and deliver you with some dreamy, creamy, gooey bokeh!

(If you’re wondering, bokeh is how a lens renders the out of focus elements of a photo.)

Fits any Budget


Picture thanks to 401K

It’s cheap! The 50mm lens is the ultimate photography bargain. Starting at around $100 and giving incredible optical quality even the cheapest 50mm lens will leave you lost for words when you sit down to look back at your photos. It really is that good!


Yes there’s a few but at this price it’s hard to find many complaints.

If you’re buying the cheapest 50mm, say the Canon 50mm f/1.8 you will find that it’s not the most well made lens in the world (optically though it’s fantastic), it’s very, very plasticy. Oh and when you autofocus it may sound like R2D2 from star wars throwing a tantrum but the pros out weight the cons with this lens – you won’t be disappointed with it’s performance!

Is the 50mm Really That Good?

Short and sweet answer here. Yes.

Here are some of the best 50mm on sale today –

Canon’s 50mm range

Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II Camera Lens (Cheapest)

Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM Standard & Medium Telephoto Lens for Canon SLR Cameras

Canon EF 50mm f/1.2 L USM Lens for Canon Digital SLR Cameras

Nikon’s 50mm offerings

Nikon 50mm f/1.8D AF Nikkor Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras (Cheapest)

Nikon 50mm f/1.8G AF-S NIKKOR FX Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras

Nikon 50mm f/1.4G SIC SW Prime AF-S Nikkor Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras

Nikon 58mm f/1.4G AF-S NIKKOR Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras

Sigma 50mm

Sigma 311101 50mm F1.4 DG HSM Art Lens for Canon Cameras (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED)

Pentax 50mm

Pentax DA 50mm f1.8 lens for Pentax DSLR Cameras

SMC Pentax FA 50mm f/1.4

Sony 50mm

Sony 50mm f/1.8 SAM DT Lens for Sony Alpha Digital SLR Cameras (Cheapest)

Sony 50mm f/1.4 Lens for Sony Alpha Digital SLR Camera

Sony SEL50F18/B 50mm f/1.8 Lens for Sony E Mount Nex Cameras (Black)

If you’re wondering what the next lens is you should buy and you don’t own a 50mm lens – the answer is simple, go buy one! It really is a no brainer photography purchase. It will not only help develop your skills as a photographer but it will open up a whole new world of photography for you to explore.

Want Photography Tips?

Sure you do! Drop your email in the box below to get some insanely amazingly cool and more importantly free photography tips & videos…

We value your privacy and would never spam you

Leave A Response

* Denotes Required Field