Shadowy Daisy

Shadowy Daisy
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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.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

45
votes
10answers
175k 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 ...
33
votes
2answers
3k views

Why no zoom lenses below f/2.8?

I can understand that a zoom below f/2.8 would be difficult and costly, but it seems like something pros would kill for. Surely it can't be more expensive (if its possible) than some of the $10k+ ...
15
votes
7answers
50k 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
47k 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?
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
21
votes
13answers
26k 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
28k 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
15k 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
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 these:...
14
votes
5answers
1k 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
564 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 (...
3
votes
5answers
1k views

Will there be any difference in photos taken using full frame and crop lenses on a crop camera?

I see a lot of questions comparing full frame (e.g EF for Canon, FX for Nikon) and crop lenses (e.g. EF-S for Canon, DX for Nikon) but I can't find the answer to what would be the differences between ...
17
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 ...
14
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 ...
10
votes
6answers
3k views

How to select lenses for sports photography?

I would like to get into sports photography, and would probably want a better telephoto lens so I can get better close up shots. What other factors should I keep in mind as I make my choice? Does IS (...
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
4answers
35k 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
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 ...
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 ...
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 ...
30
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
35k 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 ...
22
votes
12answers
36k views

How do I get a stuck screw filter off of my lens?

There is a UV-filter screwed on my Canon 16-35mm. For some reason, I'm not able to get it off the lens. Does anyone has a simple but safe trick?
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
6k 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 ...
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
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 ...
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 ...
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?
36
votes
9answers
11k views

What are the dangers of removing a lens while the camera is on?

The manual warns that you should turn the camera off to remove the lens, but it doesn't say why. I suspect this may have to do with dust, but I could imagine there are lots of other reasons. I'm ...
12
votes
3answers
9k views

Which is better: Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM or Canon EF 70-200mm f/4.0 L USM (without IS)?

Simple question: Which lens is better? The L Series (non-IS) Canon EF 70-200mm f/4.0 L USM or the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM? I am an enthusiast and usually shoot landscape, my kids playing ...
12
votes
2answers
3k views

When I use FX lenses on a DX camera, does the focal length or minimum aperture change?

If I put a Nikkor 35mm f/2 FX lens on a DX camera, is it still 35mm f/2, or has the effective focal length or minimum aperture changed, because it is being used on a smaller format than what it was ...
7
votes
3answers
17k views

How can I fix a broken lens/autofocus?

My 35mm f2 canon lens's autofocus has stopped working. In manual focus mode the focus wheel is locked, and in autofocus mode the focus wheel spins freely but does not change the focus at all. In ...
6
votes
4answers
939 views

Is depth of field and bokeh influenced by distance to the subject?

I know that the aperture size has a direct effect on the depth of field. However, what about distance to the subject? Let's say I took two pictures, one at 24mm and one at 70mm, using the same lens ...
4
votes
9answers
990 views

Canon Starter Level Lenses [duplicate]

I would like to get into photography, and I'm thinking about buying a starter D-SLR camera (450D, 500D). Which Canon lenses do think fit to my purposes as considering I'm a beginner and my budget is ...
3
votes
3answers
297 views

What to look for in a wide angle lens?

My girlfriend owns a D5100 and I own a D7000 for which we both share lenses (or try to when appropriate). I own the 18-55 kit lens, a Nikkor 50mm 1.8g (I may consider buying the inexpensive 50mm 1.8d ...
2
votes
4answers
7k views

What is the relationship between focal length and shutter speed?

I am very new to photography and am trying to grasp the basics of it these days. Can someone please help me understand the relationship between focal length of a lens and shutter speed of camera?
1
vote
2answers
249 views

What does different focal length offer me?

I have a beginner photographer and I have spent a lot of time learning the basics (exposures, lenses, focal lengths, crop factor etc). It's all good except I'm not so sure when I need to buy lenses of ...