6 Best Lenses for Building Photography Today

Photography is not just a hobby, but it is a form of art for many of us.

To take the best picture, a lot of things have to line up for you. The most important thing among them is possessing a keen eye. You must have the ability to see something that others fail to notice.

Then you must be equipped with the right tools to capture that moment. That is where a lens comes in. While a lens may seem quite basic to the amateur photographer, it is responsible for replicating what caught your eye and presenting it to the world.

In many instances, you have to take pictures of inanimate objects, where hardly anything happens. But with the right lens, you will be able to project your thoughts into your photographs and bring life to those stills.

So, how do you decide which lens to use? To help you, we have compiled this list of the 6 best lenses for building photography today.

Let’s get snapping, shall we?

Best Lenses for Building Photography

From wide-angle lenses to tilt-shift lenses, this list includes lenses that can help you capture stunning shots of buildings and architecture. So without further ado, here’s the list of the 6 best lenses for building photography.

1. Sony 16-35mm f4 OSS – Best for Full-Frame Cameras

Sony is one of the most sought-after brands when it comes to electronics, so it is no surprise that they are entering the world of lenses. Thus, the expectations are high from the Sony 16-35mm f4 OSS, which is best suited for full-frame cameras. It has several exciting features that can provide you with the perfect click.

Sony 16-35mm Vario-Tessar T FE F4 ZA OSS E-Mount Lens (International...
  • Sony Vario-Tessar T* FE 16-35mm F4 ZA OSS E-Mount...
  • Adorama Camera Lens Valuable Bundle. Kit Includes.

Why Did We Like It?

This is a well-balanced unit that feels very comfortable in your hands. This is due to the ergonomic design that features all-metal construction. Furthermore, it has a zoom ring and a manual focusing ring in front of the body. Also, there are even markers for focal lengths to make your job easier.

Moving alone, it has a significant front element that allows you to get the perfect shot in most scenarios. Now, there are next to no controls around the lens because the camera controls the OSS and other focusing functions. Therefore, you can solely focus on taking the picture while your lens will take care of the rest. 

Another important aspect, like many devices from Sony, is that this too is splash-proof and can withstand even the occasional downpour. Added to this, it has an excellent autofocus feature.

What Could’ve Been Better?

The distortion feature is an aspect where other products are better than it. Therefore, this is something that the manufacturers could have addressed. Besides, it has only f4, which means that you may not get the desired shot on certain occasions.

Pros
  • Super sharp
  • Terrific color rendition
  • Compact
  • Well built
  • Well balanced
Cons
  • Only f4
  • Distortion could be better
Focal Length: 16-35mm | Maximum Aperture: f/4 | Image Stabilization: Yes | Lens Mount: Sony E-mount | Minimum Focusing Distance: 0.28m | Weight: 518g

2. Fujifilm 10-24mm f4 – Best for Landscape Photography

For a long time, Fujifilm was the go-to brand for most of us, and it is once again making all the right noise. If you are looking for a wide-angle lens, then the Fujifilm 10-24mm f4 could be your pick. Taking stunning images will never be a problem with it in your possession.

Sale
Fujifilm XF10-24mmF4 R OIS
  • Equivalent to 15-36 mm (35mm format) - angle of...
  • Minimum working distance of 0.24 m, Focal Length :...

Why Did We Like It?

It gives you reliable performance thanks to the full focal range, possibly due to the 35mm-equivalent focal length of 15-36mm. Moreover, when shooting architecture or landscapes, you can use the seven aperture blades and the four aspherical elements.

A significant addition is optical image stabilization, which is rarely seen in other brands. With this feature, you can take quality shots in most situations without having to worry about stability. Apart from this, it is durable, too, due to the metal focusing ring on the front and a rubber zooming ring in the middle. 

These are, in turn, well supported by the aperture ring at the back of the model. Now, the functions for image stabilization and aperture control are right behind the aperture ring to provide you with easy access. Finally, it has a broad perspective that will enable you to get excellent shots in urban environments.

What Could’ve Been Better?

It is costlier than other models in the market, and this could be a limiting factor for many users. The price is one of the first things you would look at before purchasing any model, so this is a concern. Added to this, it is also heavy, which could pose problems.

Pros
  • Smooth aperture ring
  • Sharp images
  • Brilliant colors
  • Four aspherical elements
  • Inner focusing
Cons
  • Bit heavy
  • Expensive
Focal Length: 10-24mm | Maximum Aperture: f/4 | Image Stabilization: No | Lens Mount: Fujifilm X-mount | Minimum Focusing Distance: 0.24m | Weight: 385g

3. Moment Wide Angle Lens for Phones – Best for Mobile Photography

The third product on our list has opted for the road less traveled by other brands. We are talking about the Moment Wide Angle Lenses for Phones that have decided to change the way you take photographs. It not only offers extreme quality but gives power to anyone with a phone to take great photos.

Moment Wide Lens (M-Series & T-Series) - 18mm Attachment Lens for...
  • Case Sold Seperately
  • Take next level photos and videos; Mount your lens...

Why Did We Like It?

It is lightweight and durable, which makes it easy to use with various mobile phones. Since your phone camera is small, this is a small lens as well that comes with designated focal lengths. But that does not mean that it compromises on design.

It is solidly built and offers you versatility with both broad and portrait lenses for different situations. Furthermore, this is a simple device that makes it very easy to use. All you need to do is point your camera and shoot while your lens will take care of the rest. 

Apart from this, there are no additional buttons to complicate matters, but it does have autofocus that has made it highly popular. But if you do not use it, you also have the option of using the manual focus as per your needs. Finally, it offers high-quality, sharp images that will make your clicks stand out from the rest.

What Could’ve Been Better?

It is difficult to use the mounting plate, so it could be a while before you can get used to it. Besides, it does have the propensity to get dirty, and therefore you will need to be extra careful to keep it clean.

Pros
  • Lightweight
  • Durable
  • Sharp images
  • Well built
  • Compact
Cons
  • May get dirty
  • The mounting plate is tough to use
Focal Length: 18mm | Maximum Aperture: f/1.8 | Image Stabilization: No | Lens Mount: Moment M-series mount | Minimum Focusing Distance: N/A | Weight: 85g

4. Panasonic 7-14mm f4

This is another well-known brand, and the Panasonic 7-14mm f4 adds to the reputation. If you decide to pick this, you will not be disappointed given the sublime sensors and high-quality images. You will not need to worry as a significant portion of the scene will be in focus, thereby delivering awesome photos.

Sale
PANASONIC LUMIX G VARIO LENS, 7-14MM, F4.0 ASPH., MIRRORLESS MICRO...
  • 7-14mm focal length
  • 14-28mm equivalent focal length on Micro Four...

Why Did We Like It?

It has a constant F4 zoom, which could make it the go-to lens for most architecture photographers. This feature is ably supported by its seven aperture blades, 16 elements in 12 groups, and a minimum focus of under 10 inches. All of these features then come together to produce a vibrant image.

Besides, it has a fixed lens hood and zoom markers for almost every focal length. Moreover, there is also a focusing ring situated towards the front which hardly takes up any space. Now, along the body, you will find that it is textured, which makes it comfortable to grip and enables you to take the best snaps. 

More importantly, it is quite easy to use, so you will not need to spend extra time getting used to it. Moreover, given the field of view and focal lengths, you will be able to focus on anything easily, even when using it manually.

What Could’ve Been Better?

There is no provision for a front filter, which could be a deterrent. This means that if you intend to use it for videos, you will need to spring for a matte box. Along with this, the distortion is an issue and may hamper your clicks.

Pros
  • Constant f4 zoom
  • Compact
  • Fast-focusing
  • Excellent image quality
  • Built-in lens hood
Cons
  • No provision for front filter
  • Distortion is an issue
Focal Length: 7-14mm | Maximum Aperture: f/4 | Image Stabilization: No | Lens Mount: Micro Four Thirds | Minimum Focusing Distance: 0.25m | Weight: 300g

5. Rokinon 24mm f3.5 Tilt Shift ED AW UMC

The main highlight is apparent in the name, but its other aspects have raised its popularity. The Rokinon 24mm f3.5 Tilt Shift ED AW UMC reduces your post-production stress and considerably improves your photographic experience. With it by your side, you can rest assured that the perfect click is never far away.

Rokinon TSL24M-N 24mm f/3.5 Tilt Shift Lens for Nikon
  • 24mm focal length; maximum aperture f/3.5
  • angle of view: 83.5 degrees on full frame and 59.9...

Why Did We Like It?

This Korean lens brand has made it suitable for use by both first-timers as well as professionals. Therefore, it is very user-friendly, which is mostly because of the tilt-shift function. On top of this, it is an all-mechanical device, so you will have no difficulty in using a mount adapter.

Furthermore, it is entirely manual, having both manual focus and aperture. Thus, the designers have added the Tilt and Shift adjustment knobs underneath the red ring and the aperture ring. Moreover, the top of the lens flares out, which offers support to the 82mm filter thread. 

Apart from this, the depth of field scale has all the distance markings on the barrel itself. Additionally, it has a wide focusing ring, which is sure to please the photographer in you. Finally, there are grey locking knobs, which give you that much-needed stability in various conditions to take the right shot.

What Could’ve Been Better?

It is made predominantly of plastic to keep it lightweight, but the concern is that it may not be particularly long-lasting. Thus, durability is an issue, as is the fact that the adjustment knobs are small. This means that you are likely to have difficulty working with the knobs.

Pros
  • Fully mechanical
  • Wide focusing ring
  • Affordable
  • Tightly assembled
  • Fluid movements
Cons
  • Small adjustment knobs
  • Use of plastic for construction
Focal Length: 24mm | Maximum Aperture: f/3.5 | Image Stabilization: No | Lens Mount: Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony E, Pentax K | Minimum Focusing Distance: 0.2m | Weight: 780g

6. Tamron 15-30mm f2.8 Di VC USD

If ever there was a top-notch product, then this is the one. The Tamron 15-30mm f2.8 Di VC USD comes with a range of attractive options to bring your photos to life. Other devices rarely match the colors and sharpness of this model, and it also includes features that will guarantee improved balance while shooting.

Why Did We Like It?

If you are reluctant to use a tripod and prefer to hand-hold your camera, this is the model for you. This is because the designers have incorporated image stabilization into it to provide you with more stable shots and a balanced feel. It also has the added advantage of keeping your kit to the bare minimum.

Staying on the topic of balance, it comes with vibration compensation as well so that even in the most uncomfortable scenarios, you can get the perfect shot. In this regard, you are further helped by the fact that it has a wide-angle zoom range and an f2.8 aperture. 

Along with this, it has an attached lens cap that protects the entire hood and prevents untoward incidents. Moving along, the body is made of sturdy plastic, which is textured to ensure that you get a better grip. Finally, on the sides, you get the option of vibration compensation and auto/manual focus.

What Could’ve Been Better?

It is heavier than other products in the market, which could be an issue when you need to go from one place to another. So, it may not be the ideal travel companion. Besides, the vibration compensation is not the best, and it may not deliver the most stable shots.

Pros
  • Fantastic image quality
  • Brilliant colors
  • Accurate autofocus
  • Internal zooming
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Heavy
  • Poor vibration compensation
Focal Length: 15-30mm | Maximum Aperture: f/2.8 | Image Stabilization: Yes | Lens Mount: Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony A-mount | Minimum Focusing Distance: 0.28m | Weight: 1,100g

Best Lenses for Building Photography Comparison Table

Product Focal Length Maximum Aperture Image Stabilization Lens Mount Minimum Focusing Distance Weight
Sony 16-35mm f4 OSS 16-35mm f/4 Yes Sony E-mount 0.28m 518g
Fujifilm 10-24mm f4 10-24mm f/4 No Fujifilm X-mount 0.24m 385g
Moment Wide Angle Lens for Phones 18mm f/1.8 No Moment M-series mount N/A 85g
Panasonic 7-14mm f4 7-14mm f/4 No Micro Four Thirds 0.25m 300g
Rokinon 24mm f3.5 Tilt Shift ED AW UMC 24mm f/3.5 No Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony E, Pentax K 0.2m 780g
Tamron 15-30mm f2.8 Di VC USD 15-30mm f/2.8 Yes Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony A-mount 0.28m 1,100g

Buying Guide For The Best Lens for Building Photography

There are a few things that you need to do before you step out with your camera. You need to make sure that you are ready to tackle any situation, and that is made possible thanks to your lens. The fact that you need a lens for architecture snaps narrows it down, but there are still many products from which you can choose.

To make your task more comfortable, you can keep in mind the following points to distinguish between the top brands. Photography is a delicate affair, and, in that regard, you cannot afford to compromise. Knowing these points will make you aware of what you are looking for in your model.

  1. Focus

One of the first things that you look for is the quality of the focus. You need to have both manual as well as autofocus available to be able to handle any situation. For instance, you may want to focus by yourself to get the perfect shot.

On other occasions, when there is no time, your lens has to have the ability to administer the right focus. Any good picture has the right amount of focus that makes it a quality snap, and this is something with which you cannot compromise.

  1. Durability

Photography is unpredictable, and you need to be ready to face any situation and brave the elements. Extreme heat and pouring rain are just some of the challenges you have to face while running around trying to get into position.

So, your lens must be durable to handle the demands under different conditions. Moreover, it must not break due to bumps or minor accidents, and you must be able to trust it in any scenario. Therefore, the designers should use quality materials and make sure that it is a sturdy unit.

  1. Stability

Last but not least, it must offer a great deal of balance for your shots to be stable. Often you may need to get into awkward spots or places to which you are unaccustomed. In such cases, you cannot afford to back down, and your lens must ensure that the pictures you are clicking are stable and vibration-free.

This means that you can handle most situations with aplomb and come back with the right photographs. Your lens must be adept at turning any adversity into an opportunity, and stable photos are the building blocks of a great album. Therefore, it should be equipped with the necessary functions to allow you this luxury.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between a zoom lens and a prime lens for building photography?

A zoom lens allows you to vary the focal length, which is useful for taking pictures of buildings from different distances. A prime lens, on the other hand, has a fixed focal length, but typically produces sharper images and wider apertures.

Do I need a wide-angle lens for building photography?

Yes, a wide-angle lens is generally the best choice for building photography because it allows you to capture more of the building in a single shot. A wide-angle lens is also helpful when shooting in tight spaces.

What is the ideal focal length for building photography?

The ideal focal length for building photography depends on the size of the building and the distance you are shooting from. In general, a focal length of 16-35mm is recommended for capturing wide-angle shots of buildings.

Can I use a smartphone lens for building photography?

Yes, you can use a smartphone lens for building photography. There are several smartphone lenses available on the market, such as the Moment Wide Angle Lens for Phones, which can improve the quality of your smartphone photos.

What is tilt-shift photography?

Tilt-shift photography is a technique used to create images that have a selective focus, making the subject appear miniature. The Rokinon 24mm f3.5 Tilt Shift ED AW UMC lens is an example of a lens that can be used for tilt-shift photography.

We hope that we have given you the right idea when it comes to lenses for photographing buildings.

Photography may look simple, but it is an intricate art. A lot of little things go into clicking a beautiful photograph, so you must have the right lens to care for all these things. Having looked at all the products, we feel that the Sony 16-35mm f4 OSS covers all the aspects and is the best unit available right now.

Apart from it, if you do not mind splurging a little extra, you could opt for the Fujifilm 10-24mm f4, which has some exciting features. And of course, how can we not mention the Moment Wide Angle Lens for Phones for Phones that solve your problem even if you do not own a camera?

So, hurry up and get cracking because the perfect photo is just one right lens away.

Till next time, happy shooting!

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