Bad weather can be a drag, but it doesn’t mean that you have to stay inside. Weather sealed lenses (when paired with weather sealed cameras) allow us to get outside in the wind, rain and, snow without having to worry too much about our gear. Some truly stunning images can be captured when the weather takes a turn for the worse. These weather sealed Canon EF Mount lenses are perfect for the photographers out there that don’t mind the cold and the wet. After the break we’ll show you five impressive weather sealed lenses that will help you capture some excellent images while out in the elements.
Thanks to the growing demand for more weather sealed lenses, and the amount of manufacturers who make them, lenses with the ability to shoot outside when the weather gets tough are becoming more affordable. This means more photographers than ever before can take advantage of lenses that will enable them to shoot in situations that non sealed lenses can only dream about. Here’s a look at five weather sealed lenses that sport the Canon EF mount that are both excellent performers ,and are affordable.
Rokinon 14mm F2.8 AF
Rokinon have always made lenses with great optics, but the build quality always left a little to be desired. The new Rokinon 14mm f2.8 AF though fixes this problem. Not only does it have the great optics that we have come know and love, the build quality has also been massively improved. Not only does this Rokinon feature autofocus, it’s also weather sealed which makes it perfect for landscape photography, cityscapes, astrophotography, and architectural photography.
In our review we said:
“It’s fast to focus, can deliver bokeh, has a fast aperture, has weather sealing, and is on par with Tamron’s pricing. How can you seriously go wrong?”
The 14mm f2.8 AF from Rokinon is really a massive jump from older Rokinon lenses. In the past most of their lenses have been manual focus affairs, but this lens does indeed have autofocusing capabilities and it works really well. Autofocusing speeds are nice and fast, even in low light situations.
Inside the casing you’ll find 15 elements in 10 groups along with 7 aperture blades. Images produced with this lens are just what we have come to expect from Rokinon glass. You can expect clean, sharp, images with colors that pop. While there is a little distortion due to the super wide angle, we did not find any evidence of color fringing. Any distortion you do see can easily be fixed in Capture One 12 or Lightroom though. While you’re not going to be able to get a lot of bokeh from this lens, it is possible. In the right situations the bokeh that is produced is nice and smooth,
The Rokinon 14mm F2.8 weighs in at just 1.06lbs which makes it easy to carry around with you for long periods of time. The build quality is fantastic, and is just about as far away as it can be when compared to Rokinon lenses of old. The lens sits nicely in the hands, and feels much more like a premium offering. The lens is also weather sealed. A super wide angle lens with weather sealing at this price point is really unheard of. You’ll have no problems using this lens out in the wind, rain or snow which makes it perfect to capture stunning land and cityscapes.
When it comes to affordable weather sealed lenses, the Rokinon 14mm f2.8 is really hard to beat thanks to it’s razor sharp images, great autofocus performance and it’s weather sealing. If you’re in the market for a super wide angle lens, definitely check out this one.
Buy now ($598): Amazon
Rokinon 14mm F2.8 AF Image Samples
Pro Tip: Weather sealed lenses are great, but if your camera body doesn’t have the same luxury it’s still not safe to shoot outside. This can easily be fixed though by using affordable weather proof camera and lens covers. Keep some of these in your bag and when the weather gets tough simply put one over your gear and you can keep on shooting with no worries.
Tamron 35mm F1.8 Di VC USD
Tamron are another third party lens manufacturer who produce quality lenses that won’t break the bank. The Tamron 35mm f1.8 Di VC is another high quality, weather sealed lens with a fast aperture. This lens is perfect for environmental portrait photographers, street photographers, documentarians and even landscape photographers.
In our review we said:
“This lens has weather sealing at the base and within the lens around the focusing ring. During our tests, we took it out during a rainfall in NYC attached to the Canon 6D. The lens wasn’t phased at all by the rain, which is nice to know.”
The Tamron 35mm f1.8 has 10 elements in nine groups, and nine rounded aperture blades. Image quality is really good overall with nice sharp images coming once you stop the lens down just a hair. Color rendition is great too with nice warm tones being produced. This works really well for skin tones and sunsets. If that’s not to your liking that can of course be fixed in post. The lens also has vibration control (image stabilization) which makes it even easier to use when the lights go down.
Bokeh is an area where this lens really excels. If you’re a photographer who drools over bokeh then you will be incredibly happy with what this lens can produce in that regard. Autofocus performance is fantastic when using the center point, and is easily as fast as any Canon or Sigma offering.
The build quality is really great. This Tamron lens feels like a piece if glass that should cost twice as much as it does. The exterior texture feels amazing in the hands. It feels soft and elegant, and is easy to grip. It’s really one of the nicest feeling lenses we have ever got our hands on. The weather sealing is also fantastic. We took the lens out into the rain and it performed just the same as it would in dry conditions. Tamron really done a fine job with the weather sealing here.
If your’re looking for a fast prime lens that can be used out in the elements, the Tamron 35mm f1.8 Di VC is really hard to beat. Thanks to great overall image quality, a solidly built body, and a 5 year warranty; whats not to love.
Buy now ($549.80): Amazon
Tamron 35mm F1.8 Di VC Image Samples
Pro Tip: Being outside in the elements will make your lenses get dirty very quickly. If you keep a basic lens cleaning kit in your camera bag you’ll be able to remove any dirt, grease, and water spots quickly and easily.
Canon 24-105mm F4 L IS USM (First Version)
Canon’s L series line of professional lenses are hard to beat, and the 24-105mm f4 L IS USM is a firm favorite with the Canon crowd; and for good reason. This lens is built like a tank, it’s weather sealed, and the image quality is superb. The versatility that this lens offers is unmatched. It’s perfect for landscape photographers, street photographers, documentarians, event photographers, and environmental portrait artists.
In our review we said:
“The fast autofocusing speed, silent motors, image stabilization, sharpness, color rendering, and zoom range make this lens a no brainer for most photographers. Rightfully so, it has earned a special place on our list of recommended lenses for Canon owners.”
The 24-105mm f4 isn’t too heavy (1.48lbs) and is easy to use for extended periods of time. Overall Image quality is fantastic. The optics in this lens are comprised of 18 elements in 13 groups, along with eight aperture blades. You’re going to get really nice sharp images, and colors that really sing. Autofocus speeds are nice and fast too so you’ll have no problem nailing your shots, even in low light scenarios.
The lens features image stabilization which is good for an extra three stops. This makes the 24-105mm f4 incredibly easy for the user to take great shots in low light situations. It feels great in the hands thanks to generously sized zoom and focus rings, while the body itself has a nice texture to it. Overall this lens is a solid performer and great for many genres of photography.
The 24-105mm focal range is incredibly versatile and lets you go from wide angle to telephoto in just a few seconds. One minute you can be taking a landscape shot, and then seconds later you can be shooting a closeup portrait. Many photographers find that this lens is the one that they leave attached to their camera most of the time. This is of course one of Canon’s weather sealed lenses, so you can take it out into the snow, or the rain and you’ll really have nothing to worry about. Canon’s L series lenses are built to last.
The overall versatility of the 24-105mm f4 and its ease of use makes this one of the must have weather sealed lenses for Canon users.
Buy now ($847.76): Amazon
Canon 24-105mm F4 L IS USM Image Samples
Pro Tip: Lenses and cameras aren’t the only items we carry that need to be protected from the weather. SD cards and batteries are really quite fragile and don’t do well when they come into contact with moisture. Keep them safe and secure in a weather proof case. This extra layer of protection will give you peace of mind when you head into the great outdoors.
Canon 70-200mm F4 L IS USM II
The Canon 70-200mm F4 L IS USM II is one of the newest lenses in the Canon line up. This lens is the updated version of one of their staple telephoto lenses, and it does not disappoint. The distinctive off white coloring sets it apart from the crowd, while the legendary L series weather sealing makes this lens perfect for nature and wildlife photographers, landscape photographers, and even sports photographers. This is one heck of a lens.
In our review we said:
“So what makes the Canon 70-200mm f4 L IS USM II so great? It has weather sealing, nice bokeh, great autofocusing abilities, sharp image quality, and it’s very light. In the hand, it feels great and you can easily carry it around with you all day if you wish.”
The Canon 70-200mm f4 L IS USM II is a modern marvel. The build quality as you would expect from a Canon L series lens is phenomenal, and the weather sealing means you can be out shooting portraits, landscapes, sports, and nature photography no matter the weather. Snow storm? No problem. Rain? Bring it on. Day on the beach with water splashing, and sand flying around? You have nothing to worry about! This lens will laugh in Mother Natures face and will then just go back to shooting without missing a beat.
Inside this lens you’ll find 20 elements in 15 groups, and 9 aperture blades. One fluorite and two UD lenses keep chromatic aberration and distortion under control nicely. The image quality is nothing short of amazing. The colors reproduced are truly gorgeous, and you will absolutely love the just how sharp your images will be. Even though this telephoto lens only has a maximum aperture of F4, the bokeh produced is exceptional. Just check out the image samples below to see for yourself.
The Canon 70-200mm f4 L IS USM II is also nice and light which means this lens is easy to use for long periods of time. Weighing in at 1.76lbs, this lens will not add too much extra weight to your camera bag, and it makes it far easier to use for longer sessions than the F2.8 version of this lens which weighs almost twice as much. The image stabilization (which is good for an extra five stops) makes this lens easy to use in low light situations too, so you can lower that shutter speed and can still walk away with sharp images. Autofocus performance is lightning fast too thanks to the USM motor.
Overall the Canon 70-200mm f4 is really hard to beat. It’s lightweight, easy to use, produces gorgeous bokeh and sharp images, and it has image stabilization and weather sealing. If you’re in the market for a telephoto lens, this one is hard to beat. It’s really one of the first weather sealed lenses you should add to your collection. You won’t regret it.
Buy now ($1,299): Amazon
Canon 70-200mm F4 L IS USM II Image Samples
Pro Tip: If you’re going to be going out to shoot in less than desirable weather, the last thing you want to have happen is have an SD card fail. This can, and does happen quite frequently. Keep extra memory cards in your camera bag or on your person and be prepared for whatever may come your way.
Tamron 100-400mm F4.5-6.3 Di VC USD
Tamron have been making great lenses for a long time now, in fact in some cases their lenses are better than their first party counterparts, and the Tamron 100-400mm is no exception to this rule. The Tamron 100-400mm is another lens that offers great build quality, weather sealing for days. fantastic optics, and has a really nice price. This may well be one of the best weather sealed lenses on the Canon platform for the serious nature and wildlife photographer.
In our review we said:
“Where the Tamron 100-400mm f4.5-6.3 Di VC USD really excels the most is with its image quality. Tamron’s optics have always been stellar and quite saturated with their output. This lens is no different.”
The 100-400mm f4.5-6.3Di VC USD features 17 elements in 11 groups, and has nine rounded aperture blades. Three of the elements are ultra low dispersion elements to help keep chromatic aberration at bay, while the eBAND and Florine coatings help cut down on reflections and distortions.
The images that the Tamron 100-400mm produces are incredibly sharp, and offer saturated, vibrant, rich colors. You won’t find any distortion or color fringing with this lens either thanks to the coatings and elements mentioned above. The bokeh that can be produced is really quite beautiful too, as you’ll see in the sample images below. When paired up with a crop sensor camera this lens have the equivalent focal length of 160-640mm which means you’ll really be able to get in nice and tight to the wildlife you’re tracking. The vibration control is great too, and it can really help in low light situations.
The lens is fairly compact and weighs in at 2.5lbs which makes this lens easy to use for longer periods. You’re also going to find optical image stabilization which is good for an extra four stops. The weather sealing is really very good on this lens. Tamron have been making huge strides in this area. You will be able to use this lens in some pretty nasty weather as long as it’s attached to a weather sealed camera body, and you won’t see any negative affects on the lenses overall performance. Autofocus is fast too which lends itself to the genres of photography we mentioned above.
Overall the Tamron 100-400mm f4.5-5.6 Di VC USD is a great lens to take on your wildlife photography trips. The lens feels great in the hand, is light weight, and is capable of capturing some beautiful images, and it won’t bat an eye if the weather takes a turn for the worse. Third party weather sealed lenses can offer exceptional performance for a fraction of the cost when compared to first party lenses, and this Tamron is no exception thanks to it’s outstanding all around performance.
Buy now Canon ($749): Amazon
Tamron 100-400 Image Samples