EISA Awards: The Best Lenses of 2020 According to EISA

Canon, Tamron, and Sigma are among the EISA award winners for 2020.

If you want to buy some new lenses but you aren’t sure which ones are worth a closer look, you might be interested to see what the guys and gals over at EISA have to say about all things lenses. The annual EISA awards have just been announced, and they have given their recommendations on lenses in various categories, and we have to say that, for the most part, we agree with the awards they have dished out. Tamron, Canon, Sigma, and Sony have all been killing it lately, and it hasn’t gone unnoticed. After the break, we have listed which lenses received EISA awards, so hop past the break and see if any of them excite you.

EISA, or the Expert Imaging and Sound Association, give out their stamp of approval every year to lenses and cameras (we covered the camera winners in a separate article). EISA is made up of 55 specialized interest magazines from 29 countries, and they are well respected. Below you will find the lenses that have received EISA awards for the current year. Note that the Canon 600mm and 800mm f11 lenses both received the EISA Awards for most innovative lenses, but we haven’t had the chance to get our hands on them yet (and neither have many others). Before you head out to buy some new lenses, check EISA’s recommendations against our real-world reviews.

Canon RF 24-70mm F2.8 L IS USM – EISA Best Standard Zoom Lens

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Fast-focusing abilities
  • Sharp image quality
  • Very lightweight
  • Built incredibly well
  • Well balanced and smaller than the Sony G Master
  • Image stabilization
  • Fairly priced

Cons

Buy now: $2,199

Canon RF 70-200mm F2.8 L IS USM – EISA Lens of the Year

EISA Awards

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • It’s small
  • See above
  • Beautiful bokeh
  • Pretty close focusing
  • Nice, sharp images
  • Fast-focusing and tracking
  • Weather sealing

Cons

  • The tripod collar is too large for its own good. Rotating it will only guarantee that it gets in the way of using the lens
  • The control ring should probably be closer to the front of the lens

Buy now: $2,599

Nikon 120-300 F2.8 FL EDSR VR – Best Professional Telephoto Zoom Lens

Here’s what Digital Camera World had to say about the Nikon 120-300 f2.8:

“The Nikon 120-300mm f/2.8E is, in use, a virtually flawless performer. Throughout the zoom and aperture ranges, there are effectively no weak spots, whether you’re shooting fast-moving sports wide open at 300mm or a still-life scene stopped down at 120mm.”

James Artaius – Digital Camera World

Buy now: $9,496.95

Nikon Z 85mm F1.8 EISA Best Portrait Lens

EISA Awards

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Sharp image quality
  • Weather sealing
  • Smallish size
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • It’s held back by Nikon’s autofocusing abilities (or lack thereof), but they’ve gotten better

Buy now: $796.95

Sigma 14-24mm F2.8 DG DN Art – Best Wide Angle Zoom Lens

EISA Awards

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Weather sealed
  • Fast to focus
  • Sharp image quality: some of the best we’ve seen in a wide-angle zoom actually
  • Solid build quality

Cons

  • Sigma proves to us that they still have yet to figure out how to make a small zoom lens for mirrorless cameras
  • L mount’s autofocus is very slow
  • It’s big

Buy now L Mount: $1,397.60

Buy now Sony E: $1,390.33

Sony 20mm F1.8 G – Best Wide Angle Lens

EISA Awards

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Nice and light (0.82lbs)
  • The small footprint makes it easy to carry around for long periods
  • Super fast, silent focusing
  • Weather sealing
  • Very sharp optics
  • Colors rendered are pleasing, and the bokeh isn’t too shabby either
  • The aperture ring can be de-clicked so that it can be used for video
  • The large, smooth manual focus ring

Cons

  • A slight amount of purple fringing is evident in some images

Buy now: $898

Sony 200-600mm F5.6-6.3 G OSS – Best Super Telephoto Zoom Lens

EISA Awards

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Well constructed
  • Relative compact & lightweight for a super-telephoto
  • Sturdily built
  • Excellent autofocus performance
  • Superb image quality

Cons

  • Maximum aperture is variable
  • Maximum aperture could also be brighter
  • Low light performance could be improved

Buy now: $1,998

Tamron 28-200mm F2.8-5.6 Di III RXD – EISA Best Travel Zoom Lens

EISA Awards

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Small
  • Lightweight
  • A handy range of focal lengths
  • A useful set of apertures too!
  • There’s a lock at the wider end, though it’d be better if it locked at specific focal lengths too

Cons

  • Believe it or not, this lens could use image stabilization

Buy now: $729

Tamron 70-180mm F2.8 – Best Telephoto Zoom Lens

EISA Awards

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Affordably priced
  • Small footprint
  • Lightweight
  • Robust weather sealing
  • Good image quality overall

Cons

  • Lacks image stabilization
  • Inconsistent autofocus performance
  • Limited manual controls
  • Noticeable vignetting and distortion, particularly toward the long end

Buy now: $1,199