Nidelva river through Trondheim Norway

Nidelva river through Trondheim Norway
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A photographic lens is used to focus the light onto film or a digital sensor. Many cameras have interchangeable lens systems, allowing the photographer to choose the type of lens to use.

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10
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8answers
8k views

What is the fastest lens available for a DSLR?

I've seen references to f1.2 lenses. I was wondering, are there any faster lenses available for a DSLR mount?
8
votes
2answers
982 views

How can a telephoto lens take great landscape photos?

I've read in various answers on this site people mention that telephoto lens can be used quite nicely for taking landscape photos. How is this possible, as my (beginners') understanding of landscape ...
3
votes
3answers
770 views

Which would be more suitable lens in terms of utility, weight, price: 18-135 or 18-55 + 55-200?

Is it better to invest in one 18-135mm lens or have a standard 18-55mm lens and another 55-250mm lens for occasional need?
43
votes
10answers
169k views

What can be done using a 18-55mm lens?

I have a Canon EOS 1000D with 18-55mm kit lens (entry level, as many say). Whenever I go out for a shoot, I always end up feeling handicapped because of the limited zoom range. Most of my friends ...
15
votes
5answers
34k views

Are mirror lenses good for wildlife photography in daylight?

I've recently seen these Rokinon/Opteka mirror lens with whooping focal length (like 500mm, 600mm, 800mm, 1000mm) at a cheap price. And I have seen some of their same pictures in Flickr and vendor ...
15
votes
7answers
48k views

What is the difference between a telephoto lens and a zoom lens?

Looking at the product page for Nikon lenses, I notice a distinction between telephoto lens and zoom lens. What is the difference between the two? Why would I want one over the other? I wiki'd ...
13
votes
4answers
45k views

What is USM, and what are its pros and cons?

My Canon lenses have the designation USM on them, which I assume is for the same reason that they say "Ultrasonic". What does this mean, and why or why do I not want it?
31
votes
6answers
24k views

Is it worth to upgrade from Canon 50mm f/1.8 to Canon 50mm f/1.4 on 550d?

I'm a newbie in the world of DSLR photography, having played around with my Canon 550d for few months. After posting my first question here and getting some superb advices I decided to buy Canon 50mm ...
21
votes
13answers
25k views

How does the lens diameter influence photo quality?

I have tested two different 50mm lenses in my camera. One was a Nikkor 50mm ∅52mm. The other one was a Sigma 50mm ∅72mm. I took some pictures with both lenses using the same setup for aperture and ...
15
votes
4answers
27k views

What's the advantage of buying a fixed 50mm f/1.8 lens when my camera has an 18-55mm zoom lens?

I've got a Nikon D3100 with an 18-55mm zoom lens. I'm keen to experiment with some other lenses and a friend of mine recently reccommended I purchase a fixed 50mm f/1.8 lens as he said it's good for ...
13
votes
5answers
3k views

What size lens is recommended for flying bird photography?

My wife has a Canon 450D and a 70-300 lens for long distance shots. I am considering a present or two and good advice from jrista suggests possible upgrade of camera to a Canon 7D and of lens to a ...
12
votes
1answer
14k views

What does the magnification ratio number mean on a macro lens?

I'm looking for a macro lens. I have 28-105mm Nikkor which gives me "1:2 Magnification Ratio" (whatever that means). I found another lens, Tamron 90mm Macro, which has magnification ratio of 1:1. ...
27
votes
3answers
8k views

What is a zone plate?

I was looking into alternative methods of photography and I happened upon something called a 'zone plate.' Three questions: What is a zone plate? How does it work? What can I do with it?
23
votes
4answers
2k views

Is it physically possible to build a long zoom (17-300 mm for example) at an aperture value of around 1.4 or 1.2?

I'm curious if the physics allow a company to build such a lens of course with good IQ, minimal color aberration, maximum sharpness, and little to none lens vignetting or edge softness
23
votes
6answers
1k views

Should I be worried about getting dust inside my SLR?

I recently went to Silverstone to watch the F1 qualifying and took my DSLR camera with me. Throughout the day, I switched lenses a few times, but each time was very conscious that there was a lot of ...
16
votes
5answers
2k views

Why choose an 80-200mm over an 18-200mm lens?

Being a beginner, I can't see why I must choose an 80-200 over an 18-200. Are there scenarios where an 80-200 would be preferable over an 18-200? I will be buying a D7000 soon and am looking at ...
15
votes
5answers
6k views

What equipment is necessary/preferred for real estate photography?

What equipment is necessary for real estate photography, and what is preferred? I'm starting into real estate photography, and I'm trying to figure out what I need and what I will want to plan on ...
14
votes
5answers
981 views

What are the different focal lengths of macro lenses and their advantages?

I am interested in macro-photography. I see there are macro telephoto (zoom?) lenses (e.g. 200mm), or smaller macro lenses (e.g. 40mm) ... What are the different types of macro lenses and their ...
12
votes
5answers
5k views

What is a portrait lens?

I hear this term used pretty often. Does it refer to a specific focal length? Or very low F-number? What does a lens need to have in order to be considered "portrait lens"?
11
votes
4answers
563 views

Nikon lenses: to G or not to G?

I am set to buy a 2nd lens to my d7000 kit lens. I’m close to deciding between the 35 or 50 mm, I will likely go for the f1.4 version and wanted to determine if I would need or appreciate the G ...
13
votes
8answers
5k views

Will using a lens at max aperture (“wide open”) result in poor images?

I’m looking to add a second lens to my kit lens I got with my Nikon d7000. I have read several reviews on both the 35 and 50 mm lenses made by Nikon in particular that said using either lens at the ...
7
votes
2answers
3k views

What does “N stops” mean when describing an image stabilizer?

If you ever purchased any lens with IS then you have heard this term like "3 Stop Stabilization" or "4 Stop Stabilization". Now, I am familiar with this Stop for ISO and Aperture. But this I don't ...
3
votes
5answers
1k views

Which lenses should I take on a honeymoon trip to Alaska?

Newbie photographer here and really hoping for some expert advice! I go to Alaska on honeymoon in July and really need some advice on lenses. My camera is the Canon EOS 1100D (told you I was a ...
16
votes
2answers
4k views

Why are cine lenses so much more expensive?

For example, compare a cine lens like the Zeiss Compact Prime CP.2 50mm/T2.1 ($3,900) to a high-end DSLR lens like the Canon 50mm f/1.2L ($1418). Both are EF-mount, have the same focal length, and it ...
16
votes
4answers
34k views

How does a spherical lens differ from an aspherical lens?

Many lenses (like the Pentax DA 15mm f/4 Limited, or the Nikon AF-S 35mm f/1.4G) are described as having "aspherical lens elements". Does this mean that regular lenses are spherical lenses? What's the ...
15
votes
4answers
2k views

What is a parfocal lens and how beneficial is it to photography?

I heard someone say that after using a parfocal lens for the first time, they would never switch back. What is a parfocal lens, how is it different from any other lens, and what are the advantages and ...
10
votes
1answer
4k views

What are Barrel and Pincushion distortion and how are they corrected?

I have some questions regarding Barrel distortion and pincushion distortion. Since they are related I have put them in single post. I am aware that barrel distortion occurs more in wide-angle ...
9
votes
6answers
4k views

What does small depth of field mean?

Can anyone clarify for me the various terms used to describe depth of field? There are so many it's hard without a photo dictionary to relate in my head what's actually being said to me about the ...
4
votes
5answers
3k views

Does sensor size affect lens distortion?

There was recently a video posted about how different focal lengths affect portrait photography, specifically how distortion at smaller focal lengths have more distortion and are less flattering. So ...
4
votes
6answers
3k views

What are the advantages to using EF-S lenses on Canon APS-C cameras?

I know EF-S lenses are "optimized" for crop sensors but what are the exact advantages to using an EF-S lens? Does it give better color, sharpness, depth of field, etc...? In addition, do EF-S lenses ...
4
votes
1answer
5k views

Can I use the lens from Canon AE-1 on a Canon EOS DSLR, with an adaptor maybe?

I have a Canon AE-1 (film) and I bought a digital slr camera Canon EOS 60D. I have lenses from the AE-1 camera, but I don't know if there are some adaptors to use so they fit in the 60D camera... any ...
3
votes
6answers
17k views

Looking for a good, cheap entry-level telephoto lens for Nikon D5100

I currently own a Nikon D5100 with the 18-55mm kit and am looking for a good, cheap entry-level telephoto lens. I'm a beginner, and plan to do wildlife, nature and landscape photography with an ...
1
vote
4answers
20k views

Should I buy a Canon 55-250mm lens or 70-300mm for my Rebel T3i? [closed]

Should I buy a Canon 55-250mm lens or 70-300mm for my Rebel T3i? I have the basic 18-55mm lens that came with my camera but I need a next step up that's not too expensive. What are the most common ...
0
votes
3answers
2k views

Moving up to the next lens from 55-200

I do mainly amateur wildlife shots especially whale watching and some football photography just as a hobby. I currently have canon EOS 400d with 18-55, 55-200 and macro lenses. What lens would you ...
29
votes
11answers
2k views

Will a tilt-shift lens solve my 'leaning building' shots?

I shoot primarily with a Nikon D300, and that's not likely to change soon. The camera does everything I need it to do, but this. I also use a 17-55 lens, which I know that Thom castigates as being ...
35
votes
9answers
34k views

What can a fisheye lens be useful for?

I have a variety of lenses in my camera kit. One that I do not have, and has me curious, is a fisheye lens. I mostly understand what it does: it captures an image with distortion similar to what you ...
7
votes
1answer
3k views

How do I calculate the ground footprint of an aerial camera?

I have a very simple math problem, but I cannot seem to figure it out. I need to calculate what portion of the ground will be visible when viewed from a UAV mounted camera. I believe I have it solved ...
10
votes
6answers
5k views

What's a good Nikon lens (DX) for a serious hobbyist landscape photographer?

I shoot a bit of everything, though mostly landscape stuff. Mostly with a beanbag, or handheld. I currently have the following lenses: Nikkor 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G ED DX Sigma 70-300mm f/4-5.6 APO DG ...
24
votes
4answers
2k views

Do the Lightroom lens correction tools make good lenses less important?

Lightroom has Lens Correction tools such as Distortion, Vignetting, Chromatic Abberation, etc. depending on the brand and model of lens. Due to this feature, is it less relevant what the distortion ...
18
votes
9answers
24k views

What features differentiate Nikkor and Tamron/Sigma lenses?

I'm wondering if anyone has an opinion about Nikkor vs. Tamron and/or Sigma lenses. Is it worth the extra money to purchase Nikkor lenses? I haven't had the chance to compare these. Are the Nikkor ...
16
votes
3answers
8k views

What is the Nyquist Limit and what is its significance to photographers?

The Nyquist Limit is frequently mentioned in the context of lens and sensor resolution. What is it and what is its significance to photographers? Here is an example of it being used by DPReview.com ...
15
votes
5answers
3k views

What camera & lens combination(s) are ideal for animal and bird photography?

I am interested about shooting animals (including, but not limited to, birds and in general animals that can move fast). So far, I would say I know the basic concepts of camera but I have never ...
15
votes
9answers
3k views

Are all kit lenses poor? (And if so, why?)

Kerri Shotts says (emphasis mine): Also, if you already have great glass, there is little reason to get more (unless you need it for a certain reason). E.g., if you have a 70-200 f/4, don't rush ...
12
votes
7answers
4k views

Does an ultra-wide lens perform well in landscape photography?

I own a DSLR for less than a year, currently shooting with my Nikon D90 and 18-70mm DX lens. Since the beginning of it, I am deeply in love with shooting landscapes photography: seascapes, skyscapes, ...
10
votes
2answers
3k views

How can I/should I check the sharpness of my camera lens?

The sharpness of a lens is a major concern for most photographers. This might be because we are worried about a defect in the lens, a problem with our technique or a problem with the camera. Or we ...
20
votes
4answers
5k views

Is it true that there are no stabilized prime lenses (and if so, why)?

Fast prime lenses like the Canon 50mm f/1.4 lens work nicely in low-light situations. But I'm quite sure they would work even more nicely if they had optical image stabilizers. It seems to me that no ...
14
votes
3answers
4k views

Why is 1:1 desirable for a macro lens?

Why is 1:1 desirable for a macro lens? I know it means that you can print a picture of something and it will be the same size on paper as it is in real life, but why is this such a desirable feature ...
8
votes
3answers
300 views

What are the standard tests available to quantify lens parameters?

In some of the questions I have asked here, some of the terms frequently used to describe the difference in image quality between the cheaper lenses and the premium ones have been increased contrast, ...
7
votes
5answers
1k views

Why not have the diaphragm in camera body instead of the lens?

Why is the diaphragm to control the amount of light entering the camera typically in the lens and not the camera body itself?
7
votes
2answers
3k views

What are ED elements?

I find that some lenses are indicated with the letters "ED", referring to some special type of lens element. What are ED elements, and what advantages do they bring? Note that this question isn't ...