Best Lens for Solar Eclipse Photography: Expert Recommendations

As an expert in solar phenomena with a passion for photography, I’ve spent years capturing the awe-inspiring beauty of solar eclipses. You, as an aspiring or seasoned photographer, might be wondering what lens is best to immortalize this celestial event. The right lens can make all the difference in showcasing the intricate details and grandeur of a solar eclipse.

To get straight to the point, the best lens for photographing a solar eclipse combines a long focal length for close-up details, excellent optical quality for clarity, and compatibility with solar filters to protect both your eyes and camera sensor. Based on these criteria, I’ve handpicked three lenses that excel in eclipse photography.

1. Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary Lens

  • Why It’s Ideal: This lens offers a superb telephoto range, vital for capturing the eclipse’s magnificence. Its optical stabilization ensures sharp images even at long focal lengths.
  • Where to Buy: Available at B&H Photo Video and Amazon.

2. Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2 Lens

  • Why I Recommend It: A versatile zoom range and a fast aperture make this lens perfect for the varying lighting conditions of an eclipse. The vibration compensation aids in reducing blur.
  • Where to Buy: You can find this lens at Adorama or Amazon.

3. Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM Lens

  • Why It Stands Out: Canon’s L-series quality guarantees sharp, high-contrast images. Its focal length is ideal for framing the eclipse, and the image stabilization is a boon for handheld shooting.
  • Where to Buy: Purchase from Canon’s official website or Best Buy.

Lens Model

Key Feature

Where to Buy

Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary Long telephoto range, optical stabilization B&H Photo Video, Amazon
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2 Versatile zoom, fast aperture Adorama, Amazon
Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM L-series quality, ideal focal length Canon website, Best Buy

Remember, while choosing the lens, also consider investing in a high-quality solar filter. This is crucial for protecting your camera and capturing the eclipse safely.

Each moment of the eclipse, from the partial phases to the totality, offers a unique visual experience. With the right lens, you can capture these moments in all their glory. Happy shooting, and may your eclipse photographs be as breathtaking as the event itself!

ALSO SEE: Best Telescope for Solar Eclipse


  1. What makes a lens suitable for solar eclipse photography?
    • A long focal length, excellent optical quality, and compatibility with solar filters are key.
  2. Can the Sigma 150-600mm lens be used for other types of photography?
    • Absolutely, it’s great for wildlife and sports photography as well.
  3. Why is optical stabilization important in a lens for eclipse photography?
    • It helps in reducing blur, especially when shooting at long focal lengths.
  4. Where can I buy a solar filter for these lenses?
    • Solar filters are available at camera stores and online retailers like Amazon.
  5. Is the Tamron SP 70-200mm lens easy to handle for beginners?
    • Yes, its ergonomic build and vibration compensation make it user-friendly.
  6. What is the price range of the Canon EF 100-400mm lens?
    • It’s a premium lens, so expect a higher price range.
  7. Do these lenses come with warranties?
    • Yes, they typically come with manufacturer warranties. Check specifics upon purchase.
  8. Can I use these lenses for full-frame and crop-sensor cameras?
    • Yes, they are compatible with both, but the effective focal length will vary.
  9. How does the aperture affect eclipse photography?
    • A faster aperture allows more light, useful during the darker phases of an eclipse.
  10. Are these lenses heavy and difficult to carry?
    • They are relatively heavy due to their build quality and features, but they are manageable.
  11. What’s the best way to learn how to use these lenses effectively?
    • Practice, along with studying photography tutorials and guides, is the best approach.
  12. Can I attach these lenses to a tripod?
    • Yes, using a tripod is recommended for stability, especially with long lenses.
  13. How do I maintain and clean these lenses?
    • Regular cleaning with a soft lens cloth and proper storage is key to maintenance.
  14. Is it necessary to use a solar filter with these lenses during an eclipse?
    • Absolutely, to protect your eyes and camera sensor.
  15. Can I use these lenses for astrophotography?
    • Yes, especially the Sigma 150-600mm, which is great for capturing distant celestial objects.
  16. What type of photography is the Tamron 70-200mm not suitable for?
    • It’s less suited for ultra-wide landscapes or tight indoor spaces due to its focal length.
  17. How effective is the image stabilization on the Canon EF 100-400mm?
    • It’s highly effective, particularly for handheld shooting.
  18. Can I capture the sun’s corona during a total eclipse with these lenses?
    • Yes, these lenses are capable of capturing detailed images of the sun’s corona.
  19. Are these lenses weather-sealed?
    • Most high-end lenses like these have some degree of weather sealing.
  20. Do I need an additional adapter to fit the solar filter?
    • It depends on the filter and lens size; some may require an adapter ring.
  21. How do I safely photograph the sun during an eclipse?
    • Use a solar filter and never look directly at the sun through the lens without it.
  22. What is the weight of the Sigma 150-600mm lens?
    • It weighs approximately 4.3 pounds, making it the heaviest among the three.
  23. Can the Tamron 70-200mm be used for portrait photography?
    • Yes, its focal range and aperture are excellent for portraits.
  24. What additional equipment should I consider for eclipse photography?
    • A sturdy tripod, remote shutter release, and solar filter are essential.
  25. Is manual focus or autofocus better for eclipse photography?
    • Manual focus is often preferred for precision in capturing the eclipse.
  26. What is the zoom range of the Canon EF 100-400mm lens?
    • It offers a versatile zoom range from 100mm to 400mm.
  27. Can I use extenders with these lenses?
    • Yes, but it may affect the image quality and autofocus performance.
  28. How durable are these lenses?
    • They are built to last, with robust construction and quality materials.
  29. What is the maximum aperture of the Tamron 70-200mm lens?
    • It has a maximum aperture of f/2.8.
  30. Do these lenses have any chromatic aberration?
    • High-quality lenses like these are designed to minimize chromatic aberrations.
  31. Can I shoot handheld with the Sigma 150-600mm?
    • Yes, but a tripod is recommended for better stability, especially at longer focal lengths.
  32. How does focal length affect the composition of eclipse photos?
    • A longer focal length can capture more detailed close-ups of the eclipse.
  33. Are there any discounts available for these lenses?
    • Discounts vary by retailer and time of year. It’s best to check current offers.
  34. How can I prevent lens fogging during the eclipse?
    • Keep the lens at ambient temperature and use anti-fogging solutions if necessary.
  35. What’s the closest focusing distance of the Canon lens?
    • It can focus as close as 3.2 feet.
  36. Can these lenses fit on mirrorless cameras?
    • With the appropriate mount adapter, they can be used on mirrorless cameras.
  37. What should I do if my lens gets wet while shooting?
    • Wipe it with a dry cloth and allow it to air dry completely.
  38. Is the image quality of the Tamron 70-200mm comparable to prime lenses?
    • It’s very high quality, though prime lenses may have a slight edge in sharpness.
  39. How do I protect my lens from dust and scratches?
    • Use a lens cap when not in use and a protective UV filter.
  40. Are these lenses good for video as well as stills?
    • Yes, especially with features like image stabilization and smooth focus transitions.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *