The Canon EOS 70D is one of Canon’s top models with APS-C sensors. It is also known as a “bridge” between amateurs and pros. The Canon EOS 70D is by no means the highest-end camera out there, but it is also a big step above common entry-level models.
The Canon EOS 70D has the autofocus sensor of the EOS 7D, the touchscreen of the EOS 700D, and the built-in Wi-Fi of the EOS 6D. It uses a 20.2 MP resolution sensor with the so-called dual pixel CMOS AF technology, which means the Canon 70D can do phase detection AF in movie mode and live view.
When you have a camera like the Canon EOS 70D, you have to do it justice by investing in the right lens. Here are the best lenses for Canon EOS 70D.
Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS
The Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS is an EF-S-mount lens of APS-C format. It has an aperture range of f/36 to f/3.5 and uses two aspherical elements and two UD elements. The Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS has the so-called Super Spectra Coating and a Micro-Motor AF system. It has a rounded 6-blade diaphragm and, as the name suggests, an optical image stabilizer.
We think the image stabilization is good. You can keep stopping down to cope with lower and lower light levels without worry. The Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS is good for travel photography, which often requires a wide zoom range and good image stabilization.
You may just notice chromatic aberration and some distortion under certain shooting conditions. These are not surprising, as these are the common results of widening the zoom range.
Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM Art
This lens from Sigma is compatible with the Sigma USB dock and Canon’s EF lens mount. The aperture range of the Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM Art is f/16 to f/1.8, which is accompanied by the “fast constant maximum aperture” technology.
The Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM Art is specially designed for APS-C sensors, and the equivalent focal length is 28.8-56 mm. The autofocus has the so-called Hyper Sonic AF motor, which we think is quiet and quick enough, and there are internal focusing and zoom.
It uses four aspherical elements and 5 SLD glass elements and comes in Super Multilayer Coating. The only issues you may have are the relatively limited zoom range and the comparatively large size for a standard zoom lens.
Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM
The Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM is an EF-S-mount APS-C-format lens with an aperture range of f/22 to f/2.8. It uses two UD and three aspherical elements and comes in Super Spectra Coating. The Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM has a ring-type Ultrasonic Motor AF system, Optical Image Stabilizer, and a rounded 7-blade diaphragm.
We like the f/2.8 maximum aperture and think it is just the optimal size for most low-light photography conditions. The focal length range is not the widest or most impressive one out there, but it is at least widely used.
The few negative reports that we have heard about it include some vignetting and distortion issues. However, these are very common problems that even the most expensive lenses have, and given the advantages of the Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM, these are not dealbreakers for us.
Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 AT-X116 Pro DX II
This lens from manufacturer Tokina has an aperture range of f/22 to f/2.8 and is specially designed for cameras with APS-C sensors. It uses an internal focusing AF motor, which performs quite well in our opinion. The autofocus should be useful enough for general use. It also comes with a one-touch focus clutch mechanism.
The Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 AT-X116 Pro DX II uses two super-low-dispersion lens elements and two aspheric elements. It comes with a multilayer coating and has a 77mm filter thread.
The only downside you may notice is that it does not focus as quickly as branded lenses do. This is a common issue encountered in third-party lenses. We guess the wide aperture is there to make up for that. We found that you rarely really need to focus. All in all, we think it is safe to recommend this as your staple wide angle lens for your EOS 70D.
Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM
The Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM is an APS-C format EF-S mount lens with an aperture range of f/27 to f/3.5, which we believe is good enough for general photography. It uses three aspherical elements and one super-ultra-low dispersion element.
The Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM comes in Super Spectra Coating, which is known for its quality. This lens has a ring-type Ultrasonic Motor AF system and an internal focus design. We believe that these are among the best features you can find at this price point.
One complaint that we have heard about the Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM is that it is not the sharpest lens especially when wide open. Also, the contrast is reportedly low, so you may have to do a lot of post-processing if the contrast is what you are after.
Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM
Unlike the previous items on this list, the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM is a full-frame EF-mount lens. Its aperture range is f/45 to f/4. That maximum aperture is still small in our opinion, which means you will not get much out of this if you plan to use it for portraits.
The Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM uses two ultra-low dispersion elements and a rounded 8-blade diaphragm. Body-wise, this lens has Super Spectra and Fluorine coatings, and it is weather-sealed, which is always a major plus.
The Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM has a ring-type Ultrasonic Motor AF system, Optical Image Stabilizer, and floating focus mechanism. Overall, we think this telephoto zoom lens has just the right capabilities for the right price. The images are sharp enough, and we do not think you will have any problems using this for traveling or shooting wildlife, for example.
Canon 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM
This APS-C format EF-S-mount lens from Canon has an aperture range of f/32 to f/4. It comes in Super Spectra Coating and uses one ultra-low-dispersion element. It uses STM Stepping AF motor and Optical Image Stabilizer and has a rounded 7-blade diaphragm.
In general, we believe the Canon 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM is a good option if you are particularly looking for a compact and affordable lens that does well. We think the performance is powerful enough, and the lens is much better than many other models in this price range.
The Canon 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM may be good in our opinion, but it is not spared from some criticisms here and there, as all lenses are. However, the complaints that we have heard so far are isolated, so we do not think there is any considerable cause of concern.
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM
We like the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM and believe it is a nice option if you want a macro lens for your EOS 70D. This lens is a full-frame EF-mount lens with an aperture range of f/32 to f/2.8, which we think is decent enough for the price.
The Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM uses one ultra-low-dispersion element and comes in Super Spectra Coating and weather-sealed construction. It also has a rounded 9-blade diaphragm. The magnification is 1:1, and the minimum focus is 11.8 inches. We think these features make the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM useful enough for most macro applications.
Finally, the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM has a ring-type Ultrasonic Motor AF system with a focus range limiter plus Optical Image Stabilizer. Overall, we like the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM and recommend it as a macro lens for your EOS 70D.
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM
The Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM is another full-frame lens from Canon. It is an EF-mount lens with an aperture range of f/22 to f/1.8, which should be versatile enough for general use. This lens uses an STM AF motor that supports movie servo AF with manual focus override.
The build quality is noticeably good. The lens mount is metal, and the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM has optimized lens coatings. It also has a rounded 7-blade diaphragm and a minimum focus distance of 14 inches.
We think the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM is impressively sharp, especially for its price. If you are looking for a good prime lens for your EOS 70D, we recommend that you get the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM for yourself.
Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
We like the Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art and believe that this gives great value for money. This is among the best ones you can get at this price point. The lens has one molded glass aspherical element and three special low-dispersion elements. It comes in Super Multilayer Coating, a rounded 9-blade diaphragm, a brass bayonet mount, and a thermally stable composite material.
All of these come together to produce a very sturdy and durable construction in our opinion. You can easily feel the good quality once you are holding the lens in your hand.
The Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art has an aperture range of f/16 to f/1.4, a Hyper Sonic AF motor, and a floating focus system. All of these sound good to us; our only gripe is that the Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art is not weather-sealed and maybe a little too heavy for a 50 mm prime.
Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM
The Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM is a full-frame EF-mount lens that comes in Super Spectra coating and has a rounded 8-blade diaphragm. It uses two high refractive index elements and one aspherical element. The aperture range is f/22 to f/1.4, and this lens has the Micro Ultrasonic Motor AF system.
There are three major things that caught our attention with the Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM. We notice that the image quality is quite impressive, especially when it is stopped down. There is also no (negligible at most) chromatic aberration, and the autofocus is accurate and fast enough.
However, we did hear complaints about its performance at wide apertures. Apparently, there are issues with sharpness, chromatic aberration (bokeh), and vignetting. Nevertheless, we believe the Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM is one of the best lenses you can get your hands on at this price point. These issues are not very prominent, and the workarounds are easy.
Canon EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM
We recommend this full-frame EF-mount wide-angle prime lens from Canon. The Canon EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM has an aperture range of f/22 to f/1.4 and uses two UD elements and two aspherical elements. The lens comes in Canon’s SubWavelength Coating, has a rounded 8-blade diaphragm, and is weather-sealed.
The Canon EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM has a ring-type Ultrasonic Motor AF system and a floating internal focus mechanism. This lens is ideal for night sky or astrophotography and bokeh.
As for its disadvantages, we have heard mixed comments about its performance wide open, particularly edge sharpness and focusing. It is reportedly best at f/2.2 at the widest. All in all, we believe the Canon EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM remains one of the best in this price range. It does have imperfections, but these may simply be because the lens was not made for those purposes to begin with.
Canon EF 14mm f/2.8L II USM
This is an EF-mount L-series lens with an aperture ranging from f/22 to f/2.8. We think that is a useful range, and it is safe enough. You can’t possibly go wrong at those upper and lower limits.
The Canon EF 14mm f/2.8L II USM uses two aspherical elements and two UD elements. It has an Ultrasonic AF motor with manual focus override. The body looks and feels sturdy to us. It is moisture- and dust-proof. It also comes with a built-in lens hood and a rear gelatin filter holder. The minimum focus distance is 7.9 inches.
If you are looking for a wide-angle prime lens for your EOS 70D, we think this is a safe option. It is not cheap and definitely not perfect, but we think it is a worthy investment. We feel it is built to last and withstand heavy use, and the image quality is quite impressive in our opinion.
Canon EF 100mm f/2 USM
The Canon EF 100mm f/2 USM is an EF-mount full-frame lens with Super Spectra Coating and a rounded 8-blade diaphragm. It has an aperture range of f/22 to f/2 and a ring-type Ultrasonic Motor AF system.
We like the optics of the Canon EF 100mm f/2 USM. We find the sharpness admirable throughout the range, and we are satisfied with the autofocus. It is accurate and quick enough for us, and the manual focus override is easy to work with.
With all these combined, we can say that the Canon EF 100mm f/2 USM is ideal for general photography, especially travel and low-light shots. It is also very much like the 85 mm (f/1.8), so if you already have that, then you no longer need this one.
Canon EF 300mm f/4L IS USM
This lens is a full-frame EF-mount lens with two ultra-low-dispersion elements. The Canon EF 300mm f/4L IS USM comes in Super Spectra coating, and it is weather-sealed and has a removable and rotatable tripod collar.
The Canon EF 300mm f/4L IS USM has a ring-type Ultrasonic Motor AF system and Canon’s Optical Image Stabilizer. This lens has a rounded 8-blade diaphragm.
If it is a telephoto prime lens you are looking for, we believe the Canon EF 300mm f/4L IS USM is a good option. It is a very good buy for the most part, and its few imperfections are but common ones that you can easily work around.
Your Buying Guide for Best Canon EOS 70D Lenses
As technology continues to advance, camera and lens jargon continue to grow in number and complexity. You can easily get lost in all the numbers and letters, especially if you are new to cameras. Here are some of the basic things you need to understand before shopping for lenses.
APS-C vs. Full-frame
The first thing you need to look for when shopping for lenses is compatibility. Camera sensors can be cropped (APS-C) or full-frame. Many entry-level DSLRs use APS-C sensors, while full-frame sensors are more commonly found among higher-end cameras.
You need to take a look at the brand and the model itself. Many cameras are compatible only with lenses from the same manufacturer. On the plus side, there are cameras that work even with decades-old lenses. Also, companies like Sigma and Tamron make lenses that fit even branded cameras.
The aperture is also known as the f-stop number. The smaller this number, the wider the aperture and the more light gets into the lens when capturing shots. You want a wide aperture if you do a lot of low-light photography and a narrow aperture if you are more focused on capturing the minutest details in your shots.
The focal length determines the angle of view. The shorter the focal length, the wider your image. The longer the focal length, the narrower and more closely cropped your shot. Also, a long focal length is favorable for zooming in on faraway subjects.
Your camera already has autofocus capability, and most lenses can work together with that just fine. Lenses such as Nikon and Canon have built-in focusing motors that allow them to quickly and quietly focus on the subject.
In general, the higher-end the lens, the faster the autofocus. This is great especially if you are into fast-action photography.
Manual Focus Override
Many lenses allow you to manually adjust the focus using a manual focusing ring. The downside to that is that you have to switch out of autofocus before you can adjust. Manual focus override lets you adjust focus without first turning off autofocus.
This feature prevents blurring caused by shaky hands and produces sharp shots even under low-light conditions. This feature is ideal when using the telephoto or super telephoto lenses. Different manufacturers have various names for this feature. For example, Sony has Optical SteadyShot, Canon has Image Stabilization, and Nikon has Vibration Reduction.
Consumer- and professional-grade lenses differ a lot in terms of build quality and sealing. Consumer-grade lenses typically have plastic housings and mounts. Meanwhile, professional-grade lenses have more durable and study materials and should last longer than cheaper lenses.
Needless to say, these differences affect how the lens handles the elements and harsh conditions also. Although many consumer-grade lenses are now weather-sealed to varying degrees, this feature is still more commonly found in professional-grade lenses. Especially if you do a lot of outdoor or wildlife photography, find lenses that can withstand humidity, rain, extreme temperatures, blowing dust, and the like.