Best lenses for bokeh in 2024: fast primes perfect for blurring backgrounds

Best lenses for bokeh
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The best lenses for bokeh will typically be prime lenses with wide maximum apertures. These lenses are perfect for portraits, weddings, still lifes or street photography, for example. They help you make your subjects stand out from their backgrounds, and give backgrounds a soft, creamy blur that's highly prized by photographers. 

Some of us get obsessed with the sharpness of lenses and how much infinitesimally fine detail they can resolve. But for soft and dreamy images, bokeh is more important. 

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Matthew Richards

Matthew Richards is a photographer and journalist who has spent years using and reviewing all manner of photo gear. He is Digital Camera World's principal lens reviewer – and has tested more primes and zooms than most people have had hot dinners! 

His expertise with equipment doesn’t end there, though. He is also an encyclopedia  when it comes to all manner of cameras, camera holsters and bags, flashguns, tripods and heads, printers, papers and inks, and just about anything imaging-related. 

In an earlier life he was a broadcast engineer at the BBC, as well as a former editor of PC Guide.