A kit lens is a "starter" lens which can be sold with an interchangeable-lens camera such as a single-lens reflex camera. It is generally an inexpensive lens priced at the lowest end of the manufacturer's range so as to not add much to a camera kit's price. The kit consists of the camera body, the lens, and various accessories usually necessary to get started in SLR photography. A kit lens can be sold by itself outside of a kit, particularly the ones that are moderately expensive; for instance a kit lens included in a prosumer SLR kit is often marketed as an upgrade lens for a consumer SLR. In addition, retailers often have promotions of standalone low-end SLR bodies without the lens, or a package that bundles the SLR body with one or two more expensive lenses.
Originally kit lenses were of normal focal length; more recently kit lenses tend to be inexpensive zoom lenses that range from medium wide angle to mid telephoto for added versatility. Prime lenses are generally faster (smaller f-number) than comparably priced zoom lenses, so the change to zoom lenses means that recent kit lenses are usually also slower (higher f-number). However, in most cases the inclusion of an inexpensive zoom lens is to maintain a low entry price and maximize usability for the beginner photographer. More expensive camera bodies are often paired with a likewise more expensive, thus possibly faster, lens.
Originally high end SLRs were always sold body-only without a lens as most buyers were experienced users who already had lenses. Today however this is not always the case and even high end SLRs can be purchased with a lens, albeit an appropriately higher-quality lens. In these cases the typically uncomplimentary term "kit lens' is somewhat of a misnomer. Sometimes the lens is added by the retailer at a reduced price over separate body+lens pricing.
Analog single-lens reflex cameras
- Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 for all manual focus Olympus OMs
- Zuiko 50mm f/2.0 PF for Olympus OM-101
Digital single-lens reflex cameras
- Canon EF-S 18–55mm lens: common on consumer-level cameras series (known as Rebel in North America and Kiss in Japan), such as 400D
- Canon EF-S 18–55mm IS lens: Replaced the original 18–55mm on all consumer-level cameras starting from the 450D. It was replaced by an updated version starting with the 600D and 1100D.
- Canon EF-S 18–55mm IS STM lens: Replaced the first 18–55mm IS on all consumer-level cameras starting with the 700D and 100D. A revised version became the standard consumer-level kit lens with the introduction of the 77D and 800D.
- Canon EF-S 17–85mm lens: Canon EOS 20D, Canon EOS 30D, 40D, 50D, optional on 400D
- Canon EF 24–105mm lens: 5D, 5D Mark II, 5D Mark III, Canon 6D
- Canon EF 28–135mm lens: 50D, optional on 7D
- Canon EF 28–105mm lens: Alternative lens
- Canon EF 28–80mm lens: Kit lens for film-body Canon Elan series. The original version of this lens (with metal mount and full-time manual focus) is considered a vastly superior lens to later versions, however both were included as kit lenses.
- Canon EF-S 15–85mm lens: Canon EOS 60D, 7D
- Canon EF-S 18–135mm lens: 550D, 60D, 70D, 7D; optional on 600D
- Canon EF-S 18–135 IS USM lens: Optional on 7D Mark II, 80D, 77D, and 800D.
- Canon EF-S 18–200mm lens: 50D, optional on 60D
Canon have also marketed twin lens kits, typically with the non IS version of the Canon EF-S 18-55mm lenses and
- Canon EF 55-200mm lens: A now discontinued lens supplied with earlier cameras such as the 350D.
- Canon EF 75-300mm lens: Supplied with later cameras such as the 500D.
SLRs and DSLRs
- AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G SWM IF-ED VR (as of August 2008, Nikon D90)
- AF-S DX Nikkor 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G SWM IF-ED (as of September 2006, Nikon D80)
- Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR (with Nikon D5300, D5500)
- Nikkor 18-55mm DX f/3.5-5.6G, various versions:
- AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G (as of April 2005, Nikon D50)
- AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G II (as of November 2006, Nikon D40 and D40x)
- AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR (as of November 2007, low end entry level DSLRs)
- AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR II (as of January, 2014, low end entry-level DSLRs)
- AF-P DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR (as of January, 2014, low end entry-level DSLRs)
- Nikon Nikkor AF-S 55-200mm f/4-5.6 ED VR (with Nikon D5000, D3100)
- Nikon AF-S Nikkor 16-80mm f/2.8-4E ED VR (with Nikon D500)
- Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED AF-S VR (with Nikon D600)
- Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24-120mm f/4G ED VR (with Nikon D750, D780)
- Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G VR (with Nikon D610)
- Nikon AF-S 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF DX Zoom-Nikkor (Nikon D70)
- AF Nikkor 28-80mm f/3.3-5.6G (late 90s film SLRs and early 2000s, such as the Nikon F75 and Nikon N80)
- Nikon 50mm F1.8 Series E (older 70s and 80s film cameras, such as the Nikon EM)
- Nikon 50mm F1.8G SE (with Nikon Df body)
- Nikon 35-70mm f/3.3-4.5 AF (early AF cameras such as the N4004)
Nikon offers three kit lenses with its 1 series cameras. One lens is included in all Nikon 1 kits:
- Nikon 1 Nikkor 10–30mm f/3.5-5.6 VR
Nikon also sells so-called "twin kits" or "double kits" with the Nikon 1. These combine a second lens with the 10–30mm:
- Nikon 1 Nikkor 10mm f/2.8 — Part of the "Wide Angle Kit"; a pancake lens.
- Nikon 1 Nikkor 30–110mm f/3.8-5.6 VR — Part of the "Zoom Kit".
Micro Four Thirds MILCs
Panasonic offers three kit lenses with its Micro Four Thirds cameras.
- Lumix® G X VARIO PZ 14-42mm / f/3.5-5.6 ASPH. / POWER O.I.S.
- Lumix® G VARIO HD 14-140mm / f/4.0-5.8 ASPH. / MEGA O.I.S.
- Lumix® G 14mm / f/2.5 ASPH
- SMC DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL: bundled with Pentax K10D, K100D, K110D, and K100D Super.
- SMC DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL II: updated version, bundled with K20D and K200D.
- SMC DA L 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL: plastic mount version, bundled with K-x and K-r.
- SMC DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL WR: weather-resistant version, bundled with K-7, K-5.
- SMC DA L 18-50mm F4-5.6 DC WR RE; plastic mount version of HD Pentax-DA 18-50mm F4-5.6 DC WR RE, bundled with K-S2
- SMC DA 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 ED AL DC WR: weather-resistant version, bundled with K-5 and K-30 and K-r.
- SMC DA 40mm f/2.8 XS: pancake, bundled with K-01.
- SMC DA L 50-200mm f/4.0-5.6 ED: plastic mount version, bundled with K-r and K-x.
- SMC DA 50-200mm f/4.0-5.6 ED WR: weather-resistant version, bundled with K-5 and K-30.
- Sony DT 18-70mm f/3.5-5.6: bundled with Sony α 100, Sony α 200.Sony α 300, Sony α 350.
- Sony DT 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 SAM, bundled with Sony A230, A330, A380, A33, A35, A55, A65.
- Sony DT 16-105 f/3.5-5.6: A700
- Sony DT 16–50 f/2.8: A77
- Zuiko Digital 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 (a.k.a. short kit).
- Zuiko Digital 40-150mm f/4.0-5.6 (a.k.a. long kit).
Olympus bundles camera with short kit lens alone or with both kit lenses, the latter bundle is known as doublekit.
Mirrorless system cameras
- Does not make kit lenses by the definition as being substandard, entry level and inferior to their range. They do bundle lenses with bodies at a discount.
- "Nikon launches AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-105MM F/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens".
- "Nikon AF-S DX 18-135 mm lens".
- Nikon 18-55mm
- Nikon 18-55mm II
- Nikkor updates 18-55 kit lens with VR: Digital Photography Review
- "Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR II".
- "Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G DX VR AF-P Review".
- "Nikon D70 and D70s Review by Thom Hogan". Archived from the original on 2010-01-02. Retrieved 2009-12-06.