Lensrentals reveals the most rented products of 2023
Image courtesy: Canon

Online equipment rental house Lensrentals has revealed its list of the most rented products for 2023. The company also compared this year’s rentals with last year’s. This revealed some interesting changes in the demands of the rental market. One point to note is that the chart is based on revenue, so this means that the top rentals are always skewed. For example, it would take a $40K camera far fewer rentals to climb the ranks than a $600 camera.

Who is Lensrentals?

Lensrentals is the largest online rental provider for photography, videography and lighting equipment in the US. The company has its headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee and also has a satellite office in Nashville. Lensrentals was founded in 2006 and now supplies equipment to customers in all 50 states.

Canon EOS R5

There have been big changes in the popularity of some cameras rented from Lensrentals this year. However, the number one rented camera is the same for 2023 as it was for 2022. The Canon EOS R5 has retained the top slot as the most popular piece of photography and video gear this year. However, Canon’s EOS R6, which was the second most popular rental item last year has fallen to eleventh in 2023.

Big gains for Sony

The Sony Alpha a7S III has always been a popular mirrorless camera for video use. It’s down to fourth in the list from third last year but still clearly a favorite with renters. Sony’s FX6 full frame Cinema Line camera has also jumped up to fifth spot from fourteenth most popular in 2022. Interestingly, the a7S III’s Cinema Line sibling, the FX3, has dropped from ninth last year to seventeenth in 2023.

Lenses

Alongside the camera bodies, both Canon and Sony have lenses that feature high in the charts. The second and third most popular items are Canon RF lenses: the RF 28-79mm f/2 L and the RF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS L. Canon also has another three lenses in the top 10, two EF mount and one more RF mount models. In addition, Sony’s FE 70-200mm f/2.8 G Master OSS II has grown in popularity, up to tenth, from eighteenth in 2022. However, the first generation model of this lens has dropped from sixth last year to twelfth in 2023.

Market share by brand

In terms of Lensrental’s rental market share by brand, it’s another one-two for Canon and Sony. 33.39% of rentals were Canon and 32.67% were Sony. Then it’s a big drop off to Blackmagic Design in third place down on only 5.22% of the rental market. When you look at the figures for rentals by lens mount, Sony’s E-mount is the clear winner, up to 28.44% from 25.90% in 2023. Canon’s RF mount is catching up with the company’s EF mount, however. EF rentals have dropped from 30.69% to 26.31% while RF rentals have jumped from 18.92% to 21.33%.

What we think

Lensrentals provides cameras, lenses and other equipment for photographers as well as videographers. However, it’s notable that the cameras that have topped the charts over the past few years are popular video models. It’s also clear to see that Sony and Canon have the rental market sewn up. There are no other camera or lens brands in the top twenty, whereas last year the RED Komodo 6K snuck in to hold nineteenth place. In addition, while it’s still going strong, the end of the EF mount is coming as RF grows ever more popular. It will be interesting to see what 2024’s figures show.

Featured image courtesy: Canon

Pete Tomkies is a freelance cinematographer and camera operator from Manchester, UK. He also produces and directs short films as Duck66 Films. Pete's latest short Once Bitten... won 15 awards and was selected for 105 film festivals around the world.