10 Best 24-70 Lens Reviewed Along With a Detailed Buying Guide

If you’ve been using cameras and lenses for quite some time, chances are that you have an idea what a 24-70mm lens can do. It’s a versatile lens meaning that you can confidently use it in a number of occasions.

  • Lifestyle
  • Travel
  • Architecture
  • Wedding & event photography
  • Documentaries
  • And so forth.

One thing that sets this breed of lens apart is that it has a popular focal length. And it’s no wonder every manufacturer seems keen on putting a 24-70mm under their brands.

Unfortunately, when there are so many lenses competing for your attention, it might be difficult to find the best lens for you. And that’s why we prepared the following review of some popular 24-70mm lenses.

Hopefully, the following guide will help you find one that meets your exact needs either in photography or video-recording.

Best 24-70 Lens for Nikon/ Canon/ Sony - Quick List

Here’s a quick run-down of some top lenses that have carved a niche for themselves in the competitive world of modern-day photography. The list is a time-saver, meant to help you cut straight to the chase.

Picture
EDITOR'S CHOICE
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8G ED Zoom Lens...
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM Standard Zoom Lens
Sony - FE 24-70mm F2.8 GM Standard Zoom Lens...
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED Vibration...
Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM Art Lens for Canon
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED Vibration...
Product Name
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8G ED Zoom Lens...
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM Standard Zoom Lens
Sony - FE 24-70mm F2.8 GM Standard Zoom Lens...
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED Vibration...
Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM Art Lens for Canon
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED Vibration...
Dimensions
5.2 x 3.3 x 3.3 inches
4.5 x 3.5 x 3.5 inches
8.3 x 5 x 5.5 inches
4.1 x 3.3 x 3.3 inches
3.5 x 4.2 x 4.2 inches
5.8 x 5.8 x 9.2 inches
Weight
1.98 pounds
1.77 pounds
3 pounds
1.57 pounds
2 pounds
3.7 pounds
Prime Status
EDITOR'S CHOICE
Picture
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8G ED Zoom Lens...
Product Name
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8G ED Zoom Lens...
Dimensions
5.2 x 3.3 x 3.3 inches
Weight
1.98 pounds
Prime Status
Check Latest Price
Picture
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM Standard Zoom Lens
Product Name
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM Standard Zoom Lens
Dimensions
4.5 x 3.5 x 3.5 inches
Weight
1.77 pounds
Prime Status
Check Latest Price
Picture
Sony - FE 24-70mm F2.8 GM Standard Zoom Lens...
Product Name
Sony - FE 24-70mm F2.8 GM Standard Zoom Lens...
Dimensions
8.3 x 5 x 5.5 inches
Weight
3 pounds
Prime Status
Check Latest Price
Picture
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED Vibration...
Product Name
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED Vibration...
Dimensions
4.1 x 3.3 x 3.3 inches
Weight
1.57 pounds
Prime Status
Check Latest Price
Picture
Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM Art Lens for Canon
Product Name
Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM Art Lens for Canon
Dimensions
3.5 x 4.2 x 4.2 inches
Weight
2 pounds
Prime Status
Check Latest Price
Picture
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED Vibration...
Product Name
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED Vibration...
Dimensions
5.8 x 5.8 x 9.2 inches
Weight
3.7 pounds
Prime Status
Check Latest Price

Best 24-70 lens for Nikon/ Canon/ Sony list in 2019

1. Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR f/2.8G ED (FX)

This standard zoom lens was specifically designed to be used by professionals, including photojournalists and other professional photographers.

The lens has utilized Nano crystal coating to suppress ghosting and flares. The front element has an internal focusing design and does not rotate so it will be effortless to use a polarizer.

It also features a silent-wave (ultrasonic) AF motor which will make the autofocus operations to be high-speed and silent.

The built quality is equally impressive. The lens body is made out of sturdy metal while control rings operate very smoothly.

The lens comes with a petal-shaped hood which will ensure you get quality shots across the focal length’s range.

Pros

  • Reduced ghosting and flares
  • Fast autofocus operation
  • Dust and moisture resistant

Cons

  •  Too bulky

2. Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM

The Canon EF 24-70mm lens is a highly flexible lens which you can use in a variety of situations. It has an impressive focal range that can extend from wide-angle to short telephoto without having to change lenses as well as a constant minimum aperture which is comparatively wide.

The combination of the 70mm zoom range with the bright f/2.8 maximum aperture makes it useful in blurring away the background and as a result, makes the image much sharper.

It has a sturdy and high-quality build which can survive the harshest conditions. It is also fully weather-sealed and is fully prepared to prevent dust and liquid leakages.

The lens has an impressive finish and clicks nicely into place with every switch. It also provides the sufficient heft that makes it quite easy to stabilize when mounted on a camera body.

Pros

  • Effective background-blur
  • Fully weather-sealed
  • Fast aperture speed

Cons

  • No optical stabilization

3. Sony-FE 24-70mm F/2.8 GM lens

The Sony 24-70mm f/2.8 lens is a fast zoom lens which is made out of 18 elements in 13 groups. These elements are mixed with Nano AR coating, Super ED and ED glass types.

The lens has a fast and silent AF operation due to the Direct Drive SSM (Supersonic wave motor). It has a minimum focus of 14” which coupled with a magnification of 0.24x will let you focus on just what you need.

It measures 3.45 by 5.35 inches and is designed for use with mirrorless camera bodies. It also has an impressive maximum aperture which is constant throughout the range.

You will also be impressed by the low vignetting at 70mm as well as the low lateral chromatic aberration. The build is excellent and is designed to be moisture and dust resistant.

Pros

  • Low lateral chromatic aberration
  • Solid and weather-sealed build
  • Comes with a lens hood

Cons

  • Quite heavy

4. Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED

This lens was released in August 2010 and can be comfortably used by both professionals and amateurs. Its maximum aperture does not vary with zoom range and has a 5x zoom range. This coupled with the image stabilization feature makes the lens very versatile.

The lens features the second generation VR II (Vibration Reduction), and this will ensure that you end up highly stable and clear images.

This lens will focus quietly and precisely in different lighting conditions due to the AF-S silent-wave focus motor.

It is constructed out of 17 elements in 13 groups. In this, there are two extra-low dispersion (ED) elements which will go a long way in minimizing chromatic aberration and result in sharper images and enhanced color correction.

The Nano Crystal coat will contribute to a reduction in ghosting and interior flare.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Comes with a lens hood
  • Impressive image stabilization

Cons

  • Too bulky

5. Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 Art lens

This lens is a highly affordable model with which you can still be guaranteed high performance from a high-quality device.

It is compatible with both full-frame and APS-C cameras. The body is made out of metal and a stable composite which is fully weather-sealed due to the rubber gasket which is lining the mount.

The focus and zoom rings have a very premium and solid feel as they turn very smoothly as a result of being rubberized.

The lens comprises if 19 elements in 14 groups while the aperture diaphragm utilizes nine rounded blades to ensure that the blur circles are more spherical.

The shutter speed is as slow as ¼ second and has an impressive and snappy autofocus performance even in low light conditions.

Chromatic aberration and image distortion are kept at such a low level that you will barely notice these aspects.

Pros

  • Great optic stabilization
  • Impressive build quality
  • Very affordable

Cons

  • Poor sharpness

6. Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E lens

This lens is highly versatile and is best suited for professionals for use in different situations; from landscapes to portraits and events.

It has a constant aperture of f/2.8 and this coupled with a fast autofocus motor will result in a quick and precise focus in low-light surroundings. This feature will also give you images with extreme sharpness and micro-contrast.

The lens has an optical design comprising of 20 elements in 16 groups, including Nikon’s Aspherical ED (Extra-low Dispersion) element which will deliver you outstanding precision and overall performance.

It also has a Vibration Reduction (VR) image stabilization technology which will ensure that you end up with exceptionally still images whether the shooting was hand-held or in low light conditions.

Finally, it is fully weather-sealed.

Pros

  • Very versatile
  • Full weather-sealing
  • Impressive image-stabilization

Cons

  • Very expensive

7. Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8 G2 USD lens

With this lens, Tamron aims to give you an affordable lens without compromising on its build or performance.

The lens consists of top-notch components which include two XR (Extra Refractive Index), three GM (Glass Moulded aspherical) and three LD (Low-Dispersion) elements which are meant to deliver you high-quality images.

Further, it has a Nano coating which is meant to keep ghosting and flare at the lowest levels. The front element has a fluorine coating which is muck-resistant and easy to clean.

The autofocus system is fast, accurate and silent, due to it being a ring-type ultrasonic system.

The lens has a sturdy build and is fully weather-sealed, while the zoom and focus rings operate smoothly and allow for precise adjustments.

You will be impressed at how outstanding the sharpness and contrast are throughout the zoom range and also how minimal the distortion and color fringing are.

Ghosting and flare resistance are impressive as well.

Pros

  • Excellent image stabilization
  • Sturdy and high-quality build
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Vignetting is noticeable

8. Nikon 24-70mm Nikkor AF-S f/2.8G lens

The Nikon 24-70mm lens was released in August 2007, and it is one versatile lens that will genuinely serve all your needs. Whether it is wide-angle landscapes and panoramas or portraits and events, this lens is just what you need.

It has a constant aperture of f/2.8, and you can be sure that your images are sharp with fantastic color and contrast. The wide angle is meant to provide you with more coverage.

The lens is made out of 15 elements in 11 groups. In these groups, three are Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) glass elements which will go some distance in reducing chromatic aberration and in the process increase the sharpness.

The lens features the Silent Wave Motor (SWM) which will deliver you a fast, precise and quiet auto-focus. You will also experience less ghosting and flare due to the Nano Crystal Coating Technology.

Finally, it is fully weather-sealed.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Rugged and sturdy construction
  • Fast and quiet auto-focusing

Cons

  • Very expensive

9. Tokina at-X 24-70mm f/2.8 PRO FX Nikon lens

This lens is specifically designed to be used on Nikon DSLRs and is a wide-angle to short-telephoto standard zoom. It is a highly versatile lens with a constant maximum aperture of f/2.8 and is suitable for weddings, portraits and general photography.

It has a solid build and an ultrasonic autofocus motor which will ensure that you end up with a fast and accurate autofocus system.

The lens has an outstanding resolution at all focal lengths while the sharpness is uniform even at the maximum aperture of f/2.8.

The distortion is well-controlled while the chromatic aberration is maintained at minimal levels as well. You will also notice that vignetting is either minimal or non-existent with this lens.

Pros

  • High-quality solid build
  • Very versatile
  • Fast and silent autofocus

Cons

  • Too pricey

10. Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED VR lens

This lens was specifically designed to target professional photographers and has made significant improvements from its predecessors.

It has a high-quality build which is very firm and sturdy such that you will not experience any shakiness in the lens.

The lens extends towards the short end of the zoom range, and this extension occurs inside the petal-shaped hood. This implies that the size of the lens remains constant as the zoom operations occur.

It also features the VR optical stabilization which will assure you of up to 4 stops longer exposure times. The AF-S drive will ensure that the autofocus is fast, silent and accurate.

Finally, it has an aperture which is electronically controlled.

Pros

  • Solid, high-quality build
  • Fantastic stabilization
  • Fast and silent autofocus

Cons

  •  Too heavy

The Buying Guide

Almost all camera brands ranging from Canon, Sony, Nikon, Tamron to Pentax understand the importance of a 24-70mm. In fact, some professionals are known to own more than just one 24-70mm. No doubt, this has the potential to be the most used glass in your arsenal.

So, what factors do you need to keep in mind while shopping for one (or two)? Here are a few quick ones.

Size

Even though a majority of 24-70mm lenses are compact in size, you still need to be cautious not to end up with an oversize one. The best average size is normally at 3.28 x 3.28 x 4.86 inches. And also, when it comes to weight, the average one is 2 pounds.

So, if you want a lens that’s comfortable to use all day long, be sure to work within those limits. Don’t aim too high or too low.

Stabilization

Your best bet is a lens that comes with built-in image stabilization abilities. And that way, you can capture high-quality footage even when you’re on the move.

Autofocus

A good lens is one with a high-quality autofocus system. The lens should be capable of working fast and quietly. In other words, you want to settle for something that’s fast and quiet.

Which One Is The Best?

So which is the ideal 24-70mm lens for my camera?  We’d like to provide our recommendations for different camera makes as follows:

Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR f/2.8G ED (FX) – In our view, this is the best 24-70 lens for Nikon

Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM – Needless to say, this is the best 24-70 lens for Canon

Sony-FE 24-70mm F/2.8 GM lens – Is the absolutely best 24-70 lens for Sony

Final Thoughts

As explained above, different models seem to have their best-made piece of lens. And, therefore, we’d suggest picking one that works best for your specific camera type. All the best while at it.

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