Sony Alpha 6000 lenses: A simple guide to all E-mount lenses [+6300 & 6500]
The Sony Alpha 6000 is one of the most popular mirrorless system cameras and a perfect choice for beginners as well as advanced photographers. The Alpha 6000 was part of our travel photography equipment during our six months traveling through Southeast Asia.
Since we were very satisfied with the camera, we recommend the Alpha 6000 as the best system camera for beginners in our camera buying guide.
One of the downsides that’s often listed for this camera is the limited range of available lenses. But that simply isn’t true anymore, because there are a considerable number of lenses available for the Alpha 6000 nowadays. Third-party manufacturers such as Tamron and Sigma now also offer lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000.
In this post, we’ll give you an overview of recommended lenses for the E-mount lens mount used for the Alpha 6000. All the lenses recommended here can also be used for the Sony Alpha 5000, Alpha 5100, the all-new Alpha 6300, and the Sony NEX series cameras.
We’ve sorted the lenses by zoom and fixed focal length lenses. You can use the table of contents to jump directly to the lenses of your choice.
Note: The article was completely updated in April 2020. We have all lenses on the online stores of Amazon, as well as from the two major German photo houses Foto Koch and Calumet. So you can easily compare the prices.
What do you need to consider when buying a lens for the Sony Alpha 6000?
Before we start with our concrete lens recommendations, we would like to give you a few tips on what you should pay attention to when buying a lens.
The right lens for your connection
The cameras of the Sony Alpha 6000 series have a so-called e-mount connection.
Sony also offers lenses for the A-mount connection. Unfortunately, these lenses do not fit on your camera, but only on the SLR cameras from Sony. So make sure that you always get the right mount when you buy them.
All lenses recommended in this article have an E-mount connection and are especially designed for cameras with an APS-C sensor. In addition to the Sony Alpha 6000, this includes all successor models (Alpha 6300, 6400, 6500 and 6600), as well as the Sony Alpha 5000 and 5100 and the Sony NEX series cameras.
Using lenses for the Alpha 7 series on the Alpha 6000 series
Is the selection of lenses not big enough for you? Then you can also have a look at the lenses for the Sony Alpha 7 series.
The cameras of the Alpha 7 series also have the E-Mount connector, so that the lenses also fit on an Alpha 6000.
But it doesn’t work the other way around. You cannot connect the lenses of the Alpha 6000 series to an Alpha 7 camera. The lens does fit the mount, but it is simply not optimized for this type of camera.
So please have a look at our article on lenses for the Alpha 7 series:
Only the latest models of the Sony Alpha 6000 series, the Sony Alpha 6500 and 6600, have an integrated image stabilizer. The Alpha 6000, 6100, 6300 and 6400 unfortunately do not have this.
An image stabilizer makes sure that small shocks and a restless hand are compensated and you still get sharp photos. That’s why it is very important to have one.
So if you have a camera without an image stabilizer, make sure there is one built into the lens. Most lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000 have one, but unfortunately not all.
You can recognize this by the fact that the lenses say “Optical Steady Shot” or the abbreviation OSS. Of course we always write here if there is an image stabilizer in the lens.
First of all, of course, you need to know what you want to use the lens for the most.
Every lens has its strengths and weaknesses and there is unfortunately no lens that does everything equally well.
So if you want to take portraits, look for a lens with a high aperture. If you mainly want to photograph landscapes, a very short focal length is important and if you want to take pictures on a safari, for example, you should choose a long focal length.
Standard lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000
The kit lens: Sony 16-50 mm, f/3.5-5.6
Many people buy this lens directly in a kit with the Alpha 6000. Even though kit lenses generally don’t have the best reputation, we think they’re a very good solution when you’re just starting out.
The kit lens is a good choice for beginners who are taking their first steps in photography with the Sony Alpha 6000.
The focal length of 16-50 mm is fine for most applications and the aperture of f/3.5 to f/5.6 is perfectly OK for a zoom lens in this price class. A big advantage is the very compact design and the light weight of the lens, which is just under 120 grams.
The recommended retail price for this lens is 349 euros, but you should generally be able to get one for less than 300 euros.
Buying it separately doesn’t make that much sense though, because it’s much cheaper in a kit with the camera.
The Premium-Zoom: Sony 16-55mm / f2.8
The Sony SEL1655G is the zoom lens in a class of its own for the Alpha 6000 series.
The focal length is similar to that of the kit lens, but this lens offers a continuous aperture of f/2.8 and is therefore much faster.
The image quality is excellent and the autofocus works particularly fast and precise with this lens.
However, at just under 600 grams, the lens is not a lightweight and the price of about 1,200 Euros is unfortunately not something for every budget.
A big disadvantage: The lens has no integrated image stabilizer, which is a real pity for the price. We therefore only recommend the use on the Sony Alpha 6500 and 6600, because there a stabilizer is integrated in the camera.
The interim solution: Sony 16-70 mm, f/4
The Sony SEL1670 offers a wider zoom range than the first two lenses.
With a focal length of 16 to 70 mm, you are well equipped for many situations. The lens has a continuous speed of f/4 and features high-quality Zeiss optics and an image stabilizer.
The weight is about 300 grams and the price is about 750 Euros.
Compared to the kit lens this is definitely a significant improvement. Personally, we would tend to the 18 – 135 mm lens in this price range, which we will introduce in a moment.
Very high zoom range: Sony 18-105 mm, f/4
The Sony SELP18105G offers even more zoom, an image stabilizer and also a continuous aperture of f/4, which is particularly impressive in the high zoom ranges.
The lens weighs relatively much at 426 grams. The price is less than 500 Euro and is quite ok for this lens.
The new premium zoom: Sony 18-135 mm, f/3.5-5.6
The Sony SEL18135G offers a lot of zoom with a focal length of 18 to 135 mm and a speed of f/3.5 to 5.6. In the upper focal length range, this is slightly less than the 18-105 mm lens offers.
With 350 grams it is also relatively light and thus definitely a good alternative to the 18-105 lens. An image stabilizer is also built in, of course. The price is similar and currently costs about 520 Euro.
Travel zoom #1: Tamron 18-200 mm, f/3.5-6.3
If you’re looking for a real all-in-one lens for your trip, the Tamron 18-200 mm f/3.5-6.3 is a great choice
The focal range is suitable for almost any shot. And you can probably save yourself the trouble of changing lenses with the travel zoom. At about 450 grams, the lens is obviously very heavy and you should definitely consider whether you really want to lug around such a juggernaut of a lens on the comparatively tiny Sony Alpha 6000.
If that isn’t a problem for you, this lens definitely isn’t a bad choice. It’s priced at around 550 euros.
Travel zoom #2: Sony 18-200 mm, f/3.5-6.3
A nearly identical travel zoom lens is also available from Sony itself. There are no huge differences to the Tamron lens.
Which of the two you choose is ultimately a matter of taste – or you could simply pick the lens that’s cheaper at the moment.
The 18-200 mm is also available from Sony in a special version for recording videos. The special version Sony SELP18200 has extra controls for an especially soft video zoom, but unfortunately it costs a bit more, namely around 1000 Euros.
Telephoto lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000
When it comes to telephoto lenses, you have only two options for the Sony Alpha 6000.
In principle, however, it is also possible to connect a telephoto lens for the Alpha 7 series to one of the 6000 cameras.
Telephoto lens: Sony 55-210 mm, f/4.5-6.3
The range of telephoto lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000 is somewhat limited. A relatively cheap but still good alternative is the Sony SEL55210.
You can do quite a lot with a focal length of up to 210 mm. The aperture isn’t that great at f/4.5-6.3, but a price of around 300 euros goes a long way to make up for that.
Of course, you have to ask yourself whether it makes sense to use a telephoto lens and a normal lens for the Alpha 6000, or if it isn’t easier to just buy one of the two travel zoom lenses presented above.
Personally, I’d rather opt for a slightly more expensive travel zoom lens than buy a cheap normal lens and this telephoto lens.
Really long focal length: Sony 70 – 350 mm, f/4.5-6.3
It looks a bit different with this telephoto lens, because it offers much more zoom.
With a focal length of up to 350 mm, you can conjure up even the most distant subjects in large format.
Thanks to the integrated image stabilizer, your photos will be sharp even at long focal lengths. The weight of 527 grams is of course not a small amount, but for a telephoto lens with such a long focal length it is a really good value.
The dust- and splash-proof lens has a built-in image stabilizer and the image sharpness is also quite impressive. However, the light intensity decreases, especially in the upper calorific range.
The Sony SEL70350G is priced at just under 750 euros. That is a really good price-performance ratio.
Wide angle lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000
The selection of wide-angle zooms is very small. In fact, there is only one lens that was specially developed for the Sony Alpha 6000 series.
Premium wide angle: Sony 10-18 mm, f/4
If I had to choose a wide angle lens for the Alpha 6000, I would definitely choose the Sony SEL1018. The focal length is, as the name suggests, 10-18 mm and it has a continuous speed of f/4 and an integrated image stabilizer.
The ratings for this lens are almost consistently very good. However, as often, quality has its price, which is about 650 euros.
Fixed focal lengths for the Sony Alpha 6000
In terms of fixed focal lengths, the range of lenses available for the Sony Alpha 6000 is considerably larger. Especially the third party manufacturers like Sigma and Samyang have a fairly large selection in their program.
The inexpensive fixed focal lengths for the Alpha 6000 usually do not have an integrated image stabilizer. But these lenses are available for just over 100 euros.
Wide angle fixed focal lengths for the Sony Alpha 6000
Wide-angle fixed focal lengths up to about 24 mm are particularly suitable for architectural and landscape photography. For fixed focal lengths in the wide-angle range, the selection is much larger than in the zoom range.
Zeiss Touit 12 mm, f/2.8
In the field of wide-angle lenses, for a long time there was only the 10 to 18 mm lens from Sony. But the 12 mm Zeiss lens is now a real competition to it.
Although it does not have a zoom, it offers outstanding image quality and sharpness right to the edges of the image. An image stabilizer is not integrated, but this is not so important for a wide angle.
You have to pay almost 800 Euros for it, but it is justified.
Samyang 12 mm, f/2.0
The manufacturer Samyang from Korea offers with the 12 mm wide angle lens with a speed of f/2.0 a great wide angle with a very good image quality.
However, this lens is rather something for advanced photographers, since it has no autofocus. So you have to focus manually and also the aperture is set directly on the lens.
In Germany Samyang lenses are also sold under the brand name Walimex. Samyang and Walimex lenses are absolutely identical.
So you can always decide for the cheaper lens with a clear conscience. Most of the time Samyang is a bit cheaper, that’s why we have always linked the Samyang lenses in this article. The price for this lens is usually about 300 euros.
Sigma 16 mm, f/1.4
Sigma’s 16 mm fixed focal length was specially designed for cameras with APS-C sensor and is one of the best fixed focal length lenses for the Alpha 6000 series.
Especially the high speed with an aperture of f/1.4 is outstanding. The lens has an autofocus and guarantees crisp, sharp photos.
For about 400 euros this is a really good value for money.
Samyang 16 mm, f/2.0
Samyang also offers a 16 mm fixed focal length lens. The other features are hardly any different from the 12 mm lens.
If you’d prefer a slightly reduced wide angle, this lens is a good choice. Overall, it’s also designed to deliver a slightly better image quality than the 12 mm lens. It’s also priced a little higher at 350 euros.
Sony 16 mm, f/2.8
The Sony SEL16F28 is a real lightweight. As a so-called pancake lens, it’s extremely flat and light.
It’s priced at around 250 euros. The lens is only available in silver, there’s no black version.
Sony 20 mm, f/2.8
Like the 16 mm series presented above, the Sony SEL20F28 is an extremely narrow pancake lens.
This lens is only available in black and costs just under 300 euros.
Sony 24 mm, f/1.8
The Sony SEL24F18Z with a Zeiss lens is the premium lens among the wide-angle prime lenses. It’s priced at around 800-900 euros.
But it excels with outstanding image quality and an exceptionally fast lens speed of f/1.8.
If you want to treat yourself and your camera to something really special, then this would be a great choice.
Normal lenses: Prime lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000
Normal lenses with focal lengths between 30 and 35 mm are a very good introduction to the world of prime lenses. Photos with a focal length of 35 mm approximately correspond to the normal human field of view.
These lenses are suitable for almost all purposes. We like to use them for street, reportage, and portrait shots.
Sigma 30 mm, f/1.4
Sigma also has another 30 mm prime lens in its product range and it’s quite something. The Sigma 30 mm F1.4 DC DN has a lens speed of f/1.4.
That’s really good for a price of just 350 euros. Of course, you have to accept a few minor imperfections, e.g. this lens doesn’t have an integrated image stabilizer. But it’s still really great value for money!
Zeiss Touit 32 mm, f/1.8
The 32 mm from Zeiss is the second lens in the Touit series available for the E-mount connection.
The image quality is, as usual from Zeiss, very good. However, the autofocus is often criticized as being too loud and too sluggish, which should not be the case at a price of over 500 euros.
Sony 35 mm, f/1.8
35 mm is our favorite focal length and the Sony SEL35F18 provides great value for money.
The lens speed of f/1.8 is very good and the price of around 400 euros is still relatively low.
Portrait lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000
Prime lenses with a fixed focal length of about 50 to 85 mm are particularly well-suited for portrait photography. There is a wide range of lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000 in this segment as well.
Sony 50 mm, f/1.8
With the Sony SEL50F18B, Sony offers a very nice standard lens for the portrait range. The aperture of f/1.8 allows you to shoot with a very low depth of field.
The quality of the pictures is good, the photos have a nice bokeh, and it’s a bargain at a price of about 280 euros.
Samyang 50 mm, f/1.4
Samyang also offers a 50 mm lens for the Sony Alpha 6000. For about 350 euros, it offers a lens speed of f/1.4 and a very high picture quality.
However, you have to focus manually and adjust the aperture on the lens.
Sigma 56 mm, f/1.4
This Sigma lens has a somewhat unusual focal length of 56 mm, but is still one of the top fixed focal lengths for the Alpha 6000 series.
The speed of f/1.4 is fantastic and the lens has an autofocus. You can get the lens for under 400 Euro, which is a really good price-performance ratio.
Samyang 85 mm, f/1.4
Samyang also offers a portrait focal length lens with an outstanding price-performance ratio. For just over 350 euros, you get a lens with an impressive speed of f/1.4.
The lens is no lightweight at 600 grams and like all Samyang lenses for Sony E-mount, it comes without an autofocus. If that isn’t a deal breaker for you, then this lens is a truly excellent choice.
Fisheye lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000
A fisheye is certainly no lens for everyday use. But experimenting with a fisheye lens is a lot of fun.
Samyang 8 mm, f/2.8 Fisheye
The only fisheye lens for the Sony Alpha 6000 so far comes courtesy of the Korean manufacturer Samyang. With an ultra wide-angle focal length of 8 mm and an aperture of f/2.8, you can almost capture a 180-degree section in your photos.
We have this lens ourselves, but with a Nikon connector, and we like to use it now and again for special shots. It’s priced at around 300 euros.
Macro lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000
Sony 30 mm, f/3.5
The Sony SEL30M35 is a great lens for getting into macro photography. At a price between 200 and 250 euros, it’s relatively cheap.
The close-up limit is 9.5 cm. So you can get extremely close to your subject and take great detail or macro shots.
Zeiss Touit 50 mm, f/2.8 Macro
Zeiss Macro E-MountThere is also a macro lens available from Zeiss for the Sony Alpha 6000, with a focal length of 50 mm which is more practical than the 30 mm from Sony.
The sharpness and image quality is very good, the closest focusing distance is only 5 cm. There is currently no better macro lens available for the Alpha 6000 series.
However, this has its price, which is about 750 euros.
Which lens for the Sony Alpha 6000 would you recommend?
As you can see, the range of E-mount lenses for the Sony Alpha 6000 isn’t so small after all. Nowadays, there’s at least one lens for every area of application, and usually even several.
If you have any questions, leave us a comment below the article and we will try to help you as soon as possible. Deal?
Do you have a lens for your Sony Alpha that you really like? Then please leave a comment so we can all benefit from your experience.