A Guide to Macro Lenses From 15mm to 150mm

There is a surprisingly wide variety of macro lenses available, each with different capabilities and specifications that can make for an easier workflow or more unique images. This great video will give you an overview of some of the best and most popular options and the sort of images you can expect to make with them.

Coming to you from Matt Granger, this excellent video gives a great overview of a variety of macro lenses, including the following:

As you can see from just the list above, there are a ton of choices for photographers depending on their needs. I generally consider three things when picking a macro lens: maximum magnification (at least 1:1), focal length (this has huge effects on both the look of your images and the type of subjects you will be able to work with), and if it has autofocus (and thus could reasonably double as a sharp portrait lens). Check out the video above for the full rundown from Granger. 

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13 Comments

barry cash's picture

Any reason you left out one of the top two macro lenses of all time?

Which is?...

barry cash's picture

The Fuji 80mm

No Nikon 200mm micro? Still in production after 30 years...

Roaring Lion's picture

Yes, the best macro lens, ever.

Roaring Lion's picture

Yes, the best macro lens, ever.

Roaring Lion's picture

Yes, the best macro lens, ever.

John Ellingson's picture

You left off the Macro lens I use and love -- the Sigma 180 f/2.8

Gene Rollins's picture

I use and love my Sigma 150mm f/2.8... but I no longer see the 150mm nor the 180mm listed on the official Sigma USA website. Or for sale anywhere, except for used.

I'm pretty happy with the Olympus M.Zuiko 60mm. Would like a comparison.

Troy Straub's picture

I like mine too! Still not sure which is better it or Leica 45mm. Both more than capable of great images. I like the 45 for subjects larger than 2 inches or so and the 60 for tiny subjects. More about working distance than image quality because image quality on either is amazing..

barry cash's picture

Yes the 200mm and the 180mm top of the pile but focal length is too long for some 1:1 subjects over 25 mm in depth without stacking more than 200 images for maximum DOF! But agree those two lenses are spectacular.

Matt give the Fuji 80mm macro a try it focuses very fast, unreal micro contrast, bitingly sharp TOO sharp in fact for portraits, killer bokeh and personally I love the depth of color.

Matt you usually do a great job reviewing I think the stay at home crippled your ability to get enough macro Lenses in the mix.

Where can i get that shirt