Recommended Lenses for DSLR Videography

I’ve written a bit about DSLR Videography here, and with the rumors of the new Noktor lens (50mm F0.95) for Micro Four Thirds coming, it may be of interest to you which lenses to get for shooting video with DSLRs. Here’s a couple to consider.


24-105mm F4 L IS– By far this is probably one of Canon’s most versatile lenses. If you’re using a 7D, 1D Mk IV or 5D Mk II this lens will be able to provide a wide range of shooting abilities. The cropped field of view on the 7D will make this a must have lens. It allows for great establishing shots or even panning shots.

50mm F1.4/F1.8/Zeiss 50mm F1.4- The 1.8 is the cheapest and gives great results when stopped down. The Canon 1.4 is one of Canon’s best lenses and provides great results when shooting wide open. The Zeiss is fully manual focus and can provide some amazing depth of field and great image quality in low light.

70-200mm F2.8 L IS- As one of Canon’s most popular lenses, it should be had when doing telephoto shooting or want a flatter look to your video. It could be nice for shot-reverse-shot video.

35mm F2/1.4 L- These two wide angle lenses are very nice and provide some of the best views at this focal length for video. Once again, great for establishing shots.


Pentax Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4– If you have the K-7 or the K-x, this is the lens to get as it will offer you so much versatility when shooting coupled with great imaging capabilities. Great for general use.

Pentax smc Pentax FA 31mm f/1.8 Limited– Because of the 1.5x cropped sensor on Pentax DSLRs, this is an essential lens. Also great for general use and a normal field of view.

Pentax Zoom Normal-Telephoto SMCP-DA* 50-135mm f/2.8 ED (IF) SDM– For all your telephoto work and for a flatter look. Nice for shooting wildlife.


85mm F1.4– As one of the yummiest lenses I’ve ever tested, this will allow you to have very shallow depth of field to focus on your subjects while filming. Nice for interviews and profile shots.

24-70mm F2.8 ED– Though not as versatile for videography as Canon’s 24-105, it still gets the job done when using something like a D3s. Great for interviews.

70-200mm F2.8 ED VR II- Nikon’s version of this lens render’s colors beautifully and is very, very sharp. It will help when shooting at 24p. Though I recommend using it with a tripod.

12-24mm F4 G ED- Best used with Nikon’s cropped sensor cameras, this lens will give you a great field of view when shooting video. Use it with the full framers when you’re shooting establishing shots.

Micro Four Thirds

Canon FD 24mm F1.4 L– If you can get your hands on one, this lens will be excellent as you’ll be using nice old-time Canon glass that provides for great color rendition and quality.

PanaLeica 25mm F1.4- As probably my favorite Four Thirds lens, it makes having the adapter all the more useful. What’s even better is because of the 2x crop factor you’re getting a 50mm field of view which is great for general use.

Sigma 18-50mm F2.8- This will probably be your most versatile lens as you’ll be able to use this for wide shots, interviews, shot-reverse-shots, etc.

Panasonic 20mm F1.7– As the favorite lens of current Micro Four Thirds users, it’s obviously great for video. It will allow for great sharpness while still keeping your package compact so you can attach microphones and other accessories if needed.

Chris Gampat

Chris Gampat is the Editor in Chief, Founder, and Publisher of the Phoblographer. He also likes pizza.