Best lenses for astrophotography in 2023

Getting your hands on one of the best lenses for astrophotography will allow you to capture some incredible shots of the night sky, taking you far beyond the realm of anything you can achieve with a smartphone camera or basic digital camera. These lenses are specifically designed with wide maximum apertures to enable the image sensor on your camera to absorb more light while still maintaining a clear and sharp image.

The best lenses for astrophotography often come with increased size and weight, so it's important to think about what fits well with your particular setup. While they can be a substantial investment, we'll also highlight some more budget-friendly options. It's worth taking a moment to read the reviews from our experts who have thoroughly tested each lens on this list to ensure we're presenting you with the very best choices.

Newcomers to astrophotography can find lots of useful tips and advice on our astrophotography for beginners page. We also have a guide to the best cameras for astrophotography that will pair perfectly with some of the lenses here, and you may also want to invest in a reliable tripod or travel tripod to mount all of your kit on.

The quick list

Below we've summarized the most important information about our top picks among lenses for astrophotography, including their main characteristics and who they might be best for. If you want to know more about a product before you make a purchase, click 'Read more below' and you'll find more in-depth specs and performance reviews.

Best lenses for astrophotography we recommend in 2023

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The best lens for astrophotography overall

Best overall lens, the new wide-angled 14mm f/1.4 lens from Sigma looks to offer unparalleled low-light performance.


Type: 14mm prime lens for full-frame and APS-C sensor cameras
Compatibility: Canon EF, Nikon F-mount, Sony E-mount, L-mount
Focal range: 14mm fixed focal length
Aperture range: f/1.4 - f/16
Autofocus: Yes. HLA motor
Thread size: 82mm
Weight: 1.6 lbs (725 grams)

Reasons to buy

Well-built, reliable and durable lens
A marvel at creating sharp low light images
Great autofocus, color rendition and overall image reproduction

Reasons to avoid

Heavy and bulky
Needs a tripod to maximize its potential
Only for those with the budget
Buy it if

✅ You want the best: Optically, we think this might be the best lens for astrophotography out there.

✅ Maximum aperture is a deal-breaker: A maximum of f/1.4 is ideal for astro.

✅ Build quality is important: We feel like this lens is built to last.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You need something lightweight: This lens is quite heavy and best used with a tripod.

❌ Zoom is important: The fixed 14mm focal length can be restrictive for some.

The bottom line

🔎 The Sigma 14mm f/1.4 DG DN Art lens is staggeringly good for astrophotography. Better yet, its speedy autofocusing and ability to declick the aperture ring for video makes it useful for hybrid shooting as well. ★★★★★

Design: The lens is a remarkable achievement in lens design and optical performance. It’s also well designed, sturdy, well constructed and feels ergonomically pleasing to use. If you’re committed to a style of photography that uses a tripod, we wholeheartedly recommend it, but the relatively heavy weight of this lens would lead us to suggest that it’d be worth looking at in person and actually holding one before you decide to purchase.

Performance: The excellent low-light performance and sharp image quality make this lens an absolute joy for astrophotographers. It's versatile enough for various other photography genres, like architecture, portraiture or live events. We even found that the impressive f/1.4 aperture allows handheld shooting in some low-light conditions. Color rendition within the lens is excellent, as is distortion control.

Functionality: When we reviewed the Sigma 14mm f/1.8 DG HSM Art Lens, we were impressed at the wide range of features included on the lens, again making it suitable for a number more types of photographers than you’d first imagine. There is a good approach to aperture control, and there is a manual ring with detents at every third of a stop, or there's an auto mode and even a switch to declick the control for videographers.

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Sigma 14mm f/1.8 DG HSM Art
DesignSturdy but bulky.
PerformanceIncredible sharpness and no noticeable distortion.
FunctionalityFast aperture for night sky shooting.

Best Sony lens

Best for Sony cameras: The 12-24mm has outstanding optical clarity but a price to match


Type: Zoom lens for Sony cameras
Compatibility: Sony E-mount (full frame supported – FE)
Focal range: 12mm-24mm
Aperture range: f/2.8 - f/22
Autofocus: Yes. XD (extreme dynamic) Linear Motor AF
Thread size: No filter thread
Weight: 1.87 Ibs (847g)

Reasons to buy

Superb image quality
Extremely wide viewing angle
Supports rear gel filters 

Reasons to avoid

Front filters not supported
Eye-wateringly expensive 
Buy it if

✅ You want exceptional image quality: this lens has incredible optical clarity.

✅ You want a large viewing angle: the shortest focal length gives an angle of 122 degrees.

Don't buy it if:

❌ You're on a budget: this lens is one of the most expensive on this list.

❌ You use front filters: they are not supported on this lens due to the domed glass.

The bottom line

🔎 The Sony FE 12-24mm f/2.8 GM is great if you don't want to commit to one photography niche. It is versatile enough to have the option to use the wider 12mm for nighttime shots, while also being able to zoom in for daytime landscapes. ★★★★

Design: The Sony FE 12-24mm f/2.8 GM comes from Sony's elite 'G-Master' line of lenses, making it one of the best-quality lenses in this guide, but also the most expensive. Despite its compact size and lightweight design, this lens delivers exceptional performance with an f/2.8 aperture and an impressively wide field of view, all while weighing only 1.87 lbs.

This lens is a very attractive option for anyone looking for an ultra-wide-angle lens without the added weight, all while preserving excellent build quality. However, due to its large aperture and extremely wide field of view, it's worth noting that the front glass element is quite large and bulbous, which means you can't use traditional lens filters on it.

The glass is shielded by a petal-shaped integrated hood, although using a front filter isn't an option without spending money on an adapted filter system. The good news is that there's a slot on the back of the lens for gel filters. 

Performance: The image quality from this lens is nothing less than spectacular. When we reviewed the Sony FE 12-24 f/2.8 GM lens stars appeared extremely sharp in the center of the image and still very sharp in the corners throughout the full focal length range, even at the widest aperture of f/2.8. Even for wide-angle landscape photography, this lens produced stunning images and we loved shooting with it.

Functionality: The shortest focal length of 12mm gives a whopping viewing angle of 122 degrees — this is perfect for capturing huge portions of the Milky Way and night sky landscape, which can only be achieved by taking panoramas with many other lenses.

If you want top-notch quality in your astrophotography and have the budget for it, this Sony lens is a winner. While the price is undoubtedly high, its versatility makes it a potential all-in-one wide-field astro lens. If your budget is tighter but you still want an ultra-wide-angle lens for astro, the next one on this list might be a better fit for you.

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Sony FE 12-24 f/2.8 G Master
DesignVery sturdy and well-built, light for its size.
PerformanceIncredibly sharp.
FunctionalityFixed f/2.8 aperture.