The Most Rented Photo and Video Products of 2021
Each year, we try to share as much information as possible with our community here at Lensrentals.com. Being one of the largest rental houses in the world, we think that our end-of-the-year data can show a pretty broad scope of where the industry is heading and what we can expect into next year and beyond. Last week, we shared our data for the most rented new products for 2021, and it showed a focus on the videography world – with the number one rental being the Canon EOS C70 Cinema Camera (RF), and plenty of video cameras to follow on the list. But let’s use this opportunity to look further into our data, and go over the most popular rentals of 2021.
|1||Canon EOS R5||11||Canon 35mm f/1.4L II|
|2||Canon 5D Mark IV||12||Canon EOS C300 Mark II Dual Pixel (EF)|
|3||Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L II||13||Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K (EF)|
|4||Canon EOS R6||14||Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II|
|5||Sony Alpha a7S III||15||Canon RF 24-70mm f/2.8L IS|
|6||Sony FE 70-200mm f/2.8 GM OSS||16||Canon EOS R|
|7||Sony Alpha a7 III||17||Canon EOS C70 Cinema Camera (RF)|
|8||Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS III||18||Canon EOS C200 EF Cinema Camera|
|9||Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM||19||Sony Alpha a7R IV|
|10||Canon RF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS|
A list of usual suspects, if you’ve followed these posts from previous years, but to get a full comparison, let’s look at the list from 2020.
|1||Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L II||11||Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L III|
|2||Canon 5D Mark IV||12||Canon 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro|
|3||Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II||13||Sony NP-FZ100 Battery|
|4||Sony Alpha a7 III||14||DJI Ronin-S 3-Axis Gimbal|
|5||Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS III||15||Canon 6D Mark II|
|6||Canon 35mm f/1.4L II||16||Nikon D750|
|7||Canon EOS R||17||Canon LP-E6N Battery|
|8||Canon 50mm f/1.2L||18||Canon EF-EOS R Mount Adapter|
|9||Sony 70-200mm f/2.8 GM OSS||19||Canon 85mm f/1.2L II|
|10||Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM||20||Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM Art for Canon|
When comparing the top list from this year and last, the stark and obvious talking point is the Canon R5 jumping to the top of the list in just a single year. Released in the back half of 2020, the Canon R5 was on backorder for much of 2020, but now that it’s more readily available, it’s being used in droves. While this marks a lot of good news for the EOS R platform, the second most popular rental for 2021 was the Canon 5D Mark IV – a DSLR on the EF platform. Other mentions are the decline of other brands – the entire list for 2021 is Canon and Sony – with an EF mounted Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K also clearing the list. Does this mark more bad news for Nikon in particular, a brand that has been falling further from these lists each year? Well to get a better read on that data, let’s look at some more breakdowns – with market shares for each brand, and how they’ve done this year compared to last.
|Camera Manufacturer||Market Share 2021||Market Share 2020|
Despite Canon taking over the majority of the top rented products for 2021, they actually lost a small margin of camera body market share, while still holding a large lead over the next competitor – Sony. Even still, it’s pretty shocking to see that ~60% of the camera bodies we rent are either Canon or Sony. If we want to dive even further into the data sets, we can now look through the market share list, but for lenses – since we are named Lensrentals, after all.
|Lens Manufacturer||Market Share 2021||Market Share 2020|
Looking at the lens market shares comparing this year from last, you can really see how much of our rentals are Canon systems – which makes sense since the EF mount is still basically an industry standard for video productions – with brands like RED and ARRI making cameras with EF mounting camera systems.
Fujifilm’s market share also starts to look a lot better, when combining their Fuji lenses with the Fujinon brand. The difference between the two brand names comes down to build quality – with the Fujinon brand offering metal construction.
Going down the lens market share list, there aren’t too many surprises. A lot of the third-party manufacturers started to have their numbers slip a bit, which makes sense as brand leaders like Canon, Sony, and Nikon continue to release lenses for their platforms. With brands like Sigma and Tamron developing RF and Z mount lenses soon, we can expect their numbers to grow in the continuing years. But on the note of lens mounts, let’s look at the market shares for each individual lens mount platform —
|Mount||2021 Rentals||2020 Rentals||Change|
As usual, these numbers don’t tell the full story, especially when you look at the changes in market share over 2021 and 2020. 2020 was a weird year for everyone, especially for a company that focuses on rentals for photo and video productions. Each of these brands has increased 100% in rentals from 2020 to 2021, which is obviously good news for all the brands in question. But if we just look at the percentages, the Canon RF mount systems had pretty large growth, as did Sony E mount systems. That’s no big surprise, with the Canon R5 becoming more available, and Sony’s release of the A1 and other systems. Other points of note are that the Nikon Z series just isn’t gaining the momentum that Canon is with their mirrorless platform, and that the Fuji GFX systems actually lost a little bit on the rental percentages, despite the Fuji GFX 100s coming out this year (and being among our top new products for 2021). But nevertheless, there is always more data to look through, so let’s look at lens rented by lens mount.
|Mount||2021 Rentals||2020 Rentals||Change|
Lenses rented based on mount shows a little more of the story. Still leading the pack is the Canon EF platform, despite Canon pushing nearly all their focus on the RF mount. That said, you can start to see the transition from DSLR to mirrorless platforms, with the RF mount showing a 5% growth, overpowering the 3.37% decline in the EF lens market share for 2021. Other points of note are with Nikon, showing a -1.33% change in their F platform, while their Z series only showed a small growth. Does this mean people are leaving Nikon for other brands? The numbers perhaps show just that. Additionally, the L mount platform – designed to be a universal mount for a variety of cameras and lenses – lost some momentum this year, with a small decline in market share.
And to complete the subset of data this year, let’s look at lighting brands, and where they sit within the market share in their groups.
|Light Brand||Market Share 2021||Market Share 2020|
|Paul C Buff||3.04%||3.57%|
Some things of note, before we dig through this data. How our system is set up, we include a lot of grip gear into our lighting data, so brands like Kupo are on the list for both their lightstands, as well as the combo kits we have for the Litepanels products. This also puts some anomalies in place for Manfrotto, who offer both lightstands, as well as LED panels. Even still, the crowned champion of this category is Aputure, who have nearly doubled their market share this year in the lighting department with their array of LED panels and high-powered LED monolights. Each other brand showed either a marginal growth or decline in their market share (though again, we had way more rentals in 2021 than we did in 2020, as we are able to move past the global pandemic). Personally, looking at these numbers, it does bring some concern for brands like Kino Flo, who was once a market leader with their 4Bank systems but have since been replaced with more efficient LED lights like those from brands like Quasar Science.
So as a recap from our previous post, let’s end this piece with the data shown a week and a half ago, showing where the new products for 2021 are placed. Did any of the information above surprise you? Is there any additional info you’d like to see for future years? Feel free to chime in with your thoughts in the comments below.
Articles written by the entire editorial and technical staff at LensRentals.com. These articles are for when there is more than one author for the entire post, and are written as a community effort.