Canon’s Rebel series of DSLR cameras has been extremely popular for years, and the Rebel T5i is the second latest version to hit the market (the Rebel T6i was released last year). This camera is great for beginners with easy-to-use functionality and produces impressive stills and videos. Compared to the older Canon T4i, the biggest upgrade is to the new 18-55mm STM kit lens, which has continuous live autofocus for smooth and silent video (the old kit lens has a tendency to hunt). Below are our picks for the best lenses for the Canon Rebel T5i, from the kit lenses to wide-angle and telephoto zoom.

Kit Lenses | All-in-One Lenses | Wide-Angle Lenses | Mid-Range and Portrait Lenses | Telephoto Lenses | Comparison Table

Canon T5i Kit Lenses

Canon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM ($699 for the kit)

Canon 18-55mm STM len

Weight: 7.2 oz.
Max Aperture: f/3.5
Pros: Smooth and quiet video.
Cons: Some distortion at the wide end.

The 18-55mm STM lens offered with the Canon T5i is a significant upgrade from the 18-55mm kit lens offered with the T4i and T3i. Both have image stabilization, but the newer version has better optical performance and STM, or Stepping Motor technology. For those who frequently shoot video, the STM motor performs far better for video than USM motors on other Canon lenses. It’s smoother and quieter, making the T5i a great video camera for the price.
See the Canon 18-55mm Kit


 Canon 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM ($899 for the kit) 

Canon 18-135mm STM lens

Weight: 17 oz.
Max Aperture: f/3.5
Pros: Video quality and a longer range than the 18-55mm STM above. 
Cons: Some distortion at the ends.

The Canon 18-135mm STM is a terrific lens that captures sharp images, is extraordinarily quiet, and features continuous live autofocus for video. It also has a considerably longer zoom range than the Canon 18-55mm above covering you all the way to medium telephoto. Another factor when considering the 18-135mm STM is that the lens is a great value as part of the kit—it's current $549 on its own and therefore a savings of around $350 with the camera.
See the Canon 18-135mm Kit


All-In-One Lenses

Sigma 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 Macro OS ($349)

Sigma 18-250mm lens for Canon

Weight: 16.6 oz.
Max Aperture: f/3.5
Pros: A great value a long zoom range.
Cons: Softness and questionable construction.

For those on a budget, the Sigma 18-250mm Macro OS is an economical all-in-one lens to pair with the Canon T5i. It’s hundreds of dollars less than of the Canon 18-200mm below, a lens that we don’t love in the first place. What are the weaknesses of the Sigma 18-250mm? First, it doesn’t shoot particularly well in low light, especially at the long end (it does come with Sigma’s Optical Stabilization). Second, the composite material used in the lens barrel isn’t quite as durable as a harder plastic or metal. Third, the lens has more softness in the corners than most Canon Lenses. But given the price, it’s a very viable all-in-one option for those on a budget.
See the Sigma 18-250mm


Canon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS ($699)

Canon 18-200mm lens

Weight: 21 oz.
Max Aperture: f/3.5
Pros: Versatile and good optics.
Cons: Autofocus and some distortion at the ends.

The Canon 18-200mm IS is a versatile lens designed to go head-to-head with the popular Nikon 18-200mm. The optical performance of the Canon 18-200mm is solid overall, but one notable quirk is that the manual focus ring turns when autofocus is in use (better watch your hands). All things considered, although this lens was released only five years ago in 2009, we would like to see either an 18-300mm option like Nikon, or a second version of this lens without the focus issue.
See the Canon 18-200mm


Wide-Angle Lenses

Canon 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM ($299)
Canon 10-18mm lens

Weight: 8.5 oz.
Max aperture: f/4
Pros: Lightweight and sharp.
Cons: Plastic construction. 

Released in 2014, Canon hit it out of the park with the 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM, finally satisfying those who don’t want to spend big bucks on a wide-angle lens. The 10-18mm is sharp, light, exceptionally cheap for a wide-angle zoom, and has a quiet STM motor that is great for shooting video. With a useful focal length range of 16-28.8mm on a 35mm camera, this lens is a winner in our book. The maximum aperture of f/4-5.6 isn’t optimal when natural light is low, but the lens does have four stops of image stabilization to help. For wide-angle specialists, the Canon 10-22mm below still is a viable option, albeit a pricey one.
See the Canon 10-18mm STM​


Canon 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM ($599)

Canon 10-22mm lens

Weight: 13.6 oz.
Max Aperture: f/3.5
Pros: Better low light performance than the Canon 10-18mm above. 
Cons: Expensive.

From an image quality standpoint, the Canon 10-22mm USM is slightly superior to the 10-18mm lens above. The biggest differences are low light performance, where the 10-22mm is faster, and the extra reach at 22mm (equivalent to a 35mm normal field of view). However, it’s now a whole lot tougher to pick the 10-22mm given the large disparity in price. If you value the wider maximum aperture or extra zoom, go with the 10-22mm. But for most photographers including amateurs looking for a good wide-angle walk-around lens, the new 10-18mm is a better value and shoots better video with its STM motor.
See the Canon 10-22mm USM


Mid-Range and Portrait Lenses

Canon 40mm f/2.8 STM ($149)
Canon 40mm pancake lens

Weight: 4.6 oz.
Max Aperture: f/2.8
Pros: Video quality and compact design.
Cons: 40mm isn't the most commonly used focal length.

The majority of pancake lenses are for mirrorless cameras, but Canon has manufactured this 40mm f/2.8 STM pancake lens for DSLRs. With a low profile and ultra lightweight design, the Canon 40mm pancake lens produces exceptional images with almost no distortion. It also features an STM motor—if you plan on shooting video with your Canon T5i, the 40mm pancake lens is strongly recommended.
See the Canon 40mm STM


Canon 50mm f/1.8 ($115)
Canon 50mm f1.8 II lens

Weight: 4.6 oz.
Max Aperture: f/1.8
Pros: Lightweight and cheap.
Cons: Plastic mount.

The 50mm f/1.8 is one the best values of any Canon lens: it’s sharp, lightweight, and cheap. The body of the lens is constructed mostly of plastic (the glass is high quality) but the optical performance is impressive for the price and it’s a fun lens to have in your bag. For even better low light photos and bokeh, try the Canon 50mm f/1.4.
See the Canon 50mm


Canon 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM ($799)

Canon 15-85mm STM lens

Weight: 20.3 oz.
Max Aperture: f/3.5
What we like: Versatile and sharp.
What we don't: Pricey and a bit on the heavy side.

The Canon 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 is a premium APS-C lens. Instead of carrying around and switching out multiple primes, this lens covers an impressive spectrum of focal lengths from wide-angle to medium telephoto—it’s equivalent to 24-136mm on a 35mm camera. Compared to the 18-55mm STM kit lens above, you get extra wide-angle capability and this lens has a nifty manual focus override function. The 15-85mm is a pricey lens, but we like it for travel and portraiture.
See the Canon 15-85mm USM


Telephoto Zoom Lenses

Canon 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM ($299)

 Canon 55-250mm STM lens

Weight: 13.3 oz.
Max Aperture: f/4
Pros: Good autofocus for a telephoto zoom.
Cons: Low light performance.

Canon recently discontinued its older 55-250mm f/4.0-5.6 IS II in favor of this STM version. The changes are positive: the new lens is about the same price but has better optical performance including a stepping motor for smooth focusing. All in all, we think it’s the best telephoto zoom for APS-C cameras like the Rebel T5i and a great lens to have in your bag.
See the Canon 55-250mm STM


 Canon 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS ($649) 

Canon 70-300mm f4 lensWeight: 22.2 oz.
Max Aperture: f/4
Pros: Extra long zoom range.
Cons: Cost and low light performance. 

The Canon 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS has the longest zoom range of any APS-C-format lens. However, the aperture range is the same as the 55-250mm lens above and it’s considerably more expensive at over $600. If you really need the longer reach for wildlife photos or a similar purpose, this lens is worth the cost. But for most people, we recommend the 55-250mm lens above. 
See the Canon 70-300mm


Canon T5i Lens Comparison Table

Lens Price Type Aperture Weight IS Filter
Canon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM $249 Kit f/3.5-5.6 7.2 oz. Yes 58mm
Canon 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM $549 Kit f/3.5-5.6 17 oz. Yes 67mm
Sigma 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 Macro OS $349 All-in-one f/3.5-6.3 16.6 oz. Yes 62mm
Canon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS $699 All-in-one f/3.5-5.6 21 oz. Yes 72mm
Canon 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM $299 Wide angle f/4.5-5.6 8.5 oz. Yes 67mm
Canon 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM $599 Wide angle f/3.5-4.5 13.6 oz. No 77mm
Canon 40mm f/2.8 STM $149 Portrait f/2.8 4.6 oz. No 52mm
Canon 50mm f/1.8 II $115 Portrait f/1.8 4.6 oz. No 52mm
Canon 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM $799 Portrait f/3.5-5.6 20.3 oz. Yes 72mm
Canon 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM $299 Telephoto f/4-5.6 13.3 oz. Yes 58mm
Canon 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS $649 Telephoto f/4-5.6 22.2 oz. Yes 58mm
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