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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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2
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2answers
811 views

What is a Carl Zeiss lens in a camera?

I have a Sony CyberShot camera and I don't know why they use a lens in the camera. What is a Carl Zeiss lens?
14
votes
7answers
815 views

Upgrade strategy for Canon EOS DSLRs

In February 2010 I bought my first DSLR: EOS Rebel XSi EF-S 18-55IS Kit I also bought a zoom telephoto lens: Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM The XSi is a simple camera which I thought would be good ...
12
votes
10answers
2k views

What lenses to bring while traveling? One good wide-telephoto or several smaller ones?

I have a Canon 7D and often take my camera on the road while traveling. In the past I've taken my Sigma 17-70 f/2.8-4 and my Canon 70-300 f/4-5.6, which means that I must switch out lenses quite a ...
7
votes
8answers
3k views

Software to auto correct lens distortion based on photo

A photo contains digital information about the make of the camera the focal length,etc. Does any software use this information and auto correct the lens distortion in the photo. I know that Photoshop ...
21
votes
4answers
1k 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 ...
15
votes
5answers
945 views

How do I find the aperture that produces the highest-quality images for a given lens?

I'm not talking about large aperture (f/1.8, f/2.8...), rather, about small apertures (f/18, f/20, f/23...). I read somewhere (actually I think it was on this site, but I don't exactly remember which ...
14
votes
5answers
13k 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 ...
13
votes
2answers
3k views

How iPhone 5S can have such a big aperture? f/2.2?

I thought that in order to have a big aperture such as f/2.2 a big amount of light should be able to enter to the sensor and in order to do it, a big lens was needed. How is it possible that in the ...
13
votes
3answers
2k 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 ...
18
votes
7answers
4k views

What is a great portrait lens for Nikon (under $1000)?

I am currently shooting with a Nikon D90 and use the kit 18-105 lens and a 50mm f/1.8. Mostly I shoot as a hobby but lately I've been asked to do some family and engagement shoots. The 50mm is ...
17
votes
4answers
2k views

What fixed lens to use on a cropped sensor DSLR for mountain landscape photography?

This spring, I want to do a few trips to mountains to take some shots of mountain landscapes, including in sunrise/sunset environments. I already have a Nikon 18-200mm VR (3.5-5.6). I imagine that it ...
13
votes
1answer
258 views

In which order is it recommended to set a tilt-shift lens?

After an entire week of having a Canon TS-E 17mm F/4 at my disposal, I am still not sure which control to start setting first. This particular lens has a total of 5 degrees of freedom: ±6.5° tilt ...
13
votes
6answers
2k views

What should I do to switch my gear from Sony to Canon?

So I currently have a Sony A700 which i bought a year ago, and wanting to get some quality glass. I was looking at the Carl Zeiss 24-70/f2.8 lens, but then got talking to a friend who's a canon user. ...
12
votes
2answers
250 views

Is it a bad idea to activate lens-corrections in camera, when also use lens-correction in Lightroom?

My EOS has the option to correct known lens-aberration which is activated at the moment. I use Lightroom (5.2) for post-processing, which can also correct lens-aberration. Is it a problem to ...
12
votes
3answers
19k views

Should I purchase a Tamron 70-300 USD VC or Canon 70-300 USM IS?

Good day all. I was almost decided on Canon 70-300 USM IS (non L) but recently came to know about the Tamron version (SP AF 70-300 F/4-5.6 Di VC USD) of this one. Neither of these makes you a better ...
10
votes
4answers
7k 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 ...
10
votes
2answers
896 views

How can I determine if my Sigma 10-20mm lens copy is appropriately sharp and focusing right?

I just purchased a Sigma 10-20mm lens (Canon mount) and based on the reviews I was aware that many people receive copies of the lens that are soft or don't focus properly. I purchased from B&H, so ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

Is a 50mm f/1.8 or 50mm f/1.4 a good lens for portraits in low light?

I only have one lens right now. It's the Canon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS kit lens. I think this lens is great when the lighting conditions are right but in low light I usually have to resort to flash. ...
8
votes
5answers
4k views

What CCTV lenses can I use with Micro 4/3 and adapter?

I keep hearing things about using CCTV C Mounts hacked into a Micro 4/3 camera using an adapter. Does anybody have any experience with this? Can any ebay lens work, or is the C-mount not universal? ...
7
votes
7answers
3k views

What are hidden-gem “bang for the buck” lenses for Nikon?

I'm about to buy a D700 Nikon (no, NOT D800). I have no Nikon equipment at all. I'll initially be retaining my "main" Sony based system while I get the D700 'up to speed'. In time I expect to have to ...
7
votes
4answers
41k views

How do I decide between the Canon 55-250mm or 70-300mm + 50mm?

I just bought a Canon Rebel T2i (EOS550D/Kissx4) with 18-55mm kit-lens and I have an additional $300 USD to spend on a lens. I had decided to buy a Canon EF-S 75-300mm f/4-5.6 (without IS) and a Canon ...
6
votes
1answer
986 views

How difficult is it to correct mustache-style distortion?

I am considering the Samyang 14mm Ultra Wide-Angle f/2.8 IF ED UMC but I am somewhat concerned about the 5.3% of mustache-style distortion this lens produces. I like most of what I read about this ...
6
votes
3answers
201 views

Why is the amount of light a lens lets in called the 'lens speed'?

It seems very counter intuitive that the amount of light let in by a lens is referred to as the lens speed. This term confused me for a while because I couldn't logically see how a speed would be ...
4
votes
4answers
347 views

Lens Cleaner Recommendations

What is, in your opinion, the best lens cleaner? Which do you think is the most effective/best value for your money/most easy to use, etc. Please include advantages/disadvantages as well as price and ...
4
votes
3answers
7k views

What mm lens for distance shots?

If I am looking to take landscape and wildlife shots and some of those shots being from a decent distance what mm lens would I need? I am not sure what else I should be adding here, I am just looking ...
1
vote
6answers
431 views

What are some artistic techniques that can be performed with lenses?

I have recently been attempting to perform various different techniques for taking pictures, like using a tilt-shift lens, freelensing, HDR photography, and a couple others. The styles that I want to ...
25
votes
6answers
4k views

Can I damage the focus system by turning the focus ring when the lens isn't mounted?

I have a couple lenses that don't have an internal focusing system, and whenever I want to put them back in my bag, I turn the focus ring to make the lens shorter. I noticed that when the lens is set ...
19
votes
3answers
1k 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
17
votes
5answers
2k views

When would one need manual focus override?

In lens reviews, ability to override auto-focus manually is often referred to as a good (and important) feature. I have rarely, if ever used that feature, so I feel I might be missing out on an ...
17
votes
10answers
4k views

Why don't more people use fisheye lenses as a cheap wide angle lens?

From my understanding, a fisheye lens usually has a coverage of 180 degrees or close to it. Given the extreme coverage and the availability of software that can turn fisheye images back to a ...
17
votes
5answers
1k views

How does a circular lens produce rectangular shots?

Is it something like the sensor captures a circular image and then what we get is the cropped version? Something like this: Or did I get it completely wrong?
16
votes
2answers
776 views

Do rounded edges on aperture blades improve image sharpness, and how?

In the description for the XF lenses for its new X-Pro system, Fujifilm crows: The [XF lenses] all offer precise control over depth-of-field and deliver excellent out-of-focus bokeh thanks to the ...
14
votes
3answers
3k views

Does a bigger aperture create better photos?

I have observed that the wider the aperture, the more expensive the lenses are. However, I would like to know whether it really makes a difference in your photos or not?
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Does a camera's crop factor apply to the magnification of macro shots?

If I have a lenses (or in my case extension tubes) that would allow the lens to magnify 1:1, does a 1.5x crop factor body make it really 1.5:1 ?
11
votes
3answers
774 views

Lightroom Upgrade vs Lens Metadata

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 supports new lenses compared to earlier versions. I was hoping that it would change some of my lenses from 'Unknown Lens' to a specific model, but it did not. Synchronizing ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Is EF-S 17-55 f2.8 IS USM really a 'L series' grade lens?

Some reviews say yes. But since it costs as much as an EF equivalent, why not name it as 'L'? Is there any better lenses in this range (EF or EF-S)?
10
votes
3answers
12k views

Will lenses from a Rebel work on higher-model Canon cameras?

I am thinking about purchasing a Canon 60D and selling my Rebel XT and wondered if I would need to purchase new lenses? I only have two but as you all know, once you invest it is hard to not take ...
9
votes
4answers
356 views

How do you reconcile generally positive user comments with negative comments in a review?

My question was prompted by this DPReview review of the Nikon DX 18~200mm, wherein on page 3 the author reveals some significant sharpness and distortion issues, leading to final assessments of ...
9
votes
2answers
703 views

Does the size of the front glass mean anything?

Considering the Nikon lenses: Prime lenses: AF Nikkor 14mm f/2.8D ED has a huge front glass (●₃), AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G has a tiny little front glass, deep inside the body (∙₁), AF-S VR Nikkor ...
9
votes
2answers
4k views

How can a Frazier lens achieve that massive DOF?

I've read in PetaPixel about this "Frazier lens" that can achieve a massive DOF. In this video is shown the capabilities of this lens and I must say I'm very impressed. How can this lens achieve such ...
9
votes
3answers
405 views

Are fast lenses only fast when shot wide open?

Given two lenses with different max apertures but the same size image circle (say, full frame on a Nikon FX DLSR camera) and taking shots at the exact shutter speed and focal length under the same ...
8
votes
3answers
926 views

What's the term for wide angle lenses with no distortion?

Is there one word to describe the difference between wide angle lenses that have a circular distortion and wide angle lenses that produce images where perspective lines remain straight?
8
votes
1answer
192 views

Can the sharpness of the lens be evaluated with no relation to the DSLR?

When I read lens reviews, they all say that one lens is sharp, another is very sharp, another one is not sharp at all, etc. For me, it doesn't make sense to just say that a lens is sharp or not, with ...
8
votes
2answers
910 views

Is it normal for there to be tiny dust particles in a new lens?

I'm the owner of a new Canon 550D with a Canon 18-135mm IS lens. While looking into the lens, I noticed what I think are two tiny dust particles (I would say smaller than 1mm) behind the first glass ...
8
votes
7answers
7k views

How do I get the best results for sports with a 70-200mm f/2.8?

Can anyone help? I am using a nikon d7000 for sports photography. My husband kindly bought me a sigma 70-200mm telephoto lens 2.8 as I shoot a lot of low light indoor sports. I have only just started ...
8
votes
3answers
744 views

Cameras using mirrors instead of lenses?

In astronomy, telescopes are most commonly built with mirrors, but there are refractors using lenses. All cameras I know of for Earthly purposes — portraits, landscapes, etc. — use only lenses, not ...
7
votes
2answers
557 views

Do lenses with the same f-stop but different focal length gather the same amount of light? [duplicate]

I'm taking images of a light source in a scientific labratory, and I thought I had a good grasp on all these things, but now i'm second guessing myself after some results. The most important thing is ...
7
votes
2answers
586 views

What's the difference between a wide angle lens and a landscape lens?

Question pretty much says it all. Seems like when I look around people are asking "what's the best wide angle lens for landscape?", but on sites like LensHero they categorize wide angle and landscape ...
7
votes
5answers
9k views

Can you recommend a macro lens for a micro 4/3 camera?

I've recently purchased a micro 4/3 camera (Panasonic GF1), and I'm aware that with an appropriate adapter, I can use a large variety of third-party lenses. I'm interested in experimenting with macro ...
7
votes
2answers
671 views

Using SLR Lenses on DSLR Cameras

I'm just starting out with DLSR photography - I recently purchased a Sony A230 with the kit lens (18mm - 55mm). I know that the lens mount is compatible with Minolta lenses. These lenses were ...