4 Best Lenses for Canon 5D Mark IV

As a camera aimed at the professional crowd, the Canon 5D Mark IV has plenty of great options when it comes to lenses. But with many choices, it can also be challenging to pick out which is the best for you.

I’m Caleb, and I have five years of photography experience. My specialty is sports photography, and I’ve shot many different events over the years across various sports.

In this article, I’ll cover the best Canon 5D Mark IV lens options. I’ll look at several options, from the best all-around lens to the best ultra-wide lens, so keep reading if you’re unsure which one to get!

Key Takeaways

Is The Canon 5D Mark IV Professional?

Yes, as part of Canon’s lineup of high-end full-frame cameras, the 5D Mark IV is considered a professional camera.

The camera’s specs allow it to handle a wide variety of tasks, but because of its high detail level, landscape, and nature photography in specific stand out as strong points.

Going by specs, the Canon EOS R5 is the superior model to the 5D Mark IV. It’s important to note that the R5 is a mirrorless camera, however, and also shares the cons of the mirrorless format.

The 5D Mark IV has acceptable specs for videography. There are other cameras with better performance, but the 5D Mark IV’s 30fps in 4K mode still places it above the minimum standard.

What Makes The Best Canon Lens

You should consider these things when shopping for a lens for your Canon camera.

  • Range: You’ll need a lens with the right focal range for your photography style. If you need versatility, consider a lens with adjustable zoom. If you’re willing to sacrifice this, you can get a cheaper price with a fixed-length lens.
  • Maximum Aperture: If you plan on shooting in poor lighting, having a wide maximum aperture is a major help. It can also help with freezing the action when shooting moving subjects.
  • Autofocus: You also need a lens with good autofocus performance to get the most out of your camera’s autofocus system. This is one area where more modern lenses may have an advantage over older, cheaper ones.
  • Image Stabilization: Depending on your type of photography, you may want a lens that includes stabilization. The best lenses include multiple modes for stabilization that you can change depending on what kind of shot you’re going for.

The 4 Best Canon 5D Mark IV Lenses

In my opinion, these are the top lenses for the Canon 5D Mark IV. Each one of them is a leader in a distinct role, so no matter what kind of photos you’re going for, you’ll probably find one here that works for you.

1. Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM (Best Overall)

  • Range: 24-70mm
  • Max Aperture: f/2.8
  • Image Stabilization: No

The Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM is an essential general-use lens for Canon’s full-frame cameras. Whether you’re shooting concerts, sports, or weddings and other events, this lens will cover the most common ranges.

Not only does the lens have a versatile zoom range, but it also produces sharp results even at the further out parts of this range.

Like with most of Canon’s other high-end lenses, you can expect high-quality autofocus performance and a quiet motor as well.

Furthermore, if you plan on outdoor photography, this lens’s strong glare resistance is another major positive. It mainly adds value for sports or event photographers, who often have to deal with whatever lighting conditions a venue throws at them.

As for downsides, the lens is expensive for one that doesn’t reinvent the wheel compared to its predecessor. Also, some users might miss having image stabilization, which this lens doesn’t feature.

My Verdict: Thanks to its versatile range and sharp performance, the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM is arguably the best general-use lens for the Canon 5D.

2. Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS III USM (Best For Action Photography)

  • Range: 70-200mm
  • Max Aperture: f/2.8
  • Image Stabilization: Yes

For action and sports photography, the Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS III USM is likely the best all-around lens you can get. Like Canon’s 24-70mm lens, one of the main advantages is its versatile range. It covers most ‘intermediate’ shots you might need.

Similar to its predecessors, the build quality here is high. Sure, the lens isn’t the lightest to carry around, but it’s not so heavy that you need to use a monopod to shoot with it, and it can safely take some bumps.

It’s also weather-sealed, which is helpful for the sports photographer demographic the lens is popular with. Sports schedules are decided long in advance, after all, and sometimes you won’t have a choice but to bring out your gear in the rain or snow.

Unlike the 24-70mm lens, this one does have image stabilization. It has two modes, and while that’s not as advanced as some lenses out there, it’s still nice to have a dedicated mode for moving subjects.

An expected negative with this lens is the vignetting. It does suffer from this towards the further parts of the zoom range, but it’s not bad enough to be a dealbreaker for most users.

My Verdict: The Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS III USM is the best all-around lens for action or sports photographers with a full-frame Canon camera.

3. Sigma 35mm F1.4 Art DG HSM (Best Semi-Wide Lens)

  • Range: 35mm
  • Max Aperture: f/1.4
  • Image Stabilization: No

The first thing that stands out about the Sigma 35mm F1.4 Art DG HSM is the max aperture. The lens can go as wide as f/1.4, which does wonders for shooting in low-light settings. For that, the lens immediately stands out for event photographers who have to shoot in dark indoor venues.

The lens produces sharp images, too, and doesn’t suffer much when shooting at the widest aperture.

It has a sturdy build quality, and the manual focus ring is ergonomic without being easy to bump around by accident. 

Also, it handles distortion and chromatic aberration reasonably well. Some of that is still there, as there sometimes is with lenses with a very wide max aperture, but it’s definitely manageable.

However, this lens has a notable disadvantage, and that’s the autofocus. The performance is hit or miss when it comes to finding the subject, and that can really get in the way if you’re in a high-pressure niche like sports.

My Verdict: The Sigma 35mm F1.4 Art DG HSM is a high-quality semi-wide lens suited towards low-light and indoor photography in specific.

4. Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L III USM (Best Wide Lens)

  • Range: 16-35mm
  • Max Aperture: f/2.8
  • Image Stabilization: No

Like with the other zoom lenses on this list, one of the main strengths of the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L III USM is its versatility. This one can effectively serve the role of multiple prime lenses, letting you capture anything from very wide 16mm shots to more cinematic 35mm ones.

The image quality is a step up from the II model, which suffered from quality drops towards the further parts of the focal range. That doesn’t happen as much with the III, making it a successor that’s actually worth the upgrade.

The lens is also good at reducing flare from the sun, which is fitting since nature photography looks like one of the most fitting uses for it.

Also, the f/2.8 maximum aperture is the primary advantage this lens offers over one of its main competitors, a similar Canon model that came out a few years prior. That one has the same focal range but with a max aperture of f/4.

There is some of the usual zoom lens distortion and vignetting here, and the lens lacks image stabilization. While stabilization isn’t really a key feature, it would be nice to have for a lens that’s definitely on the pricey side.

My Verdict: The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L III USM is the best wide lens for full-frame Canon users, including event and nature photographers.

Final Thoughts

As you can see here, there are a lot of Canon 5D Mark IV lenses to choose from, and all of them have their own strengths and weaknesses. Hopefully, this guide has made it easier to sort through the crowd and find the one that works best for you.

What do you think about the Canon 5D Mark IV? Are there other lenses that you think should be here? Let us know in the comments!

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