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Questions about specific terms used within photography

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

8
votes
3answers
830 views

How can a 24-70mm and a 10-22mm both be “wide angle” lenses?

I've been looking at a 10-22mm lens for my Canon T2i. I've also come across some other "wide angle" lenses, like the Sigma 24-70mm F2.8. I don't understand how a wide angle lens can have such high ...
8
votes
2answers
764 views

Is there a DSLR fixed lens camera?

A DSLR by definition does not tell us if the camera has a mount for interchangeable lenses. The lens of a DSLR could be a fixed lens, right? Is there, or was there ever, such a camera? If not, why ...
8
votes
2answers
14k views

What does the expression “V+F” (or “V&F”) mean on a photography web site?

I was reading comments on my photos posted at 500px.com (for example, at http://500px.com/photo/21988337 and http://500px.com/photo/21997241). Read a few comments that say V+F or V&F, what are ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

What does it mean to shoot in flat colors?

I read somewhere that you should shoot in "flat colors" to make it easy to work in post-production. What does "flat" mean?
8
votes
1answer
284 views

What is lighting ratio?

What is lighting ratio and how is it calculated?
8
votes
2answers
1k views

What does “workflow” mean?

I keep seeing the term "workflow" in relation to post-processing being used here and on other sites. What does it actually mean though? To me it sounds like it means you do A, then B, then C every ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

When is HDR preferred to Active D-Lighting?

Could someone please explain the difference between the two? Are there cases where the one technique is more preferable over the other or a general rule of thumb?
7
votes
4answers
928 views

What does IQ mean?

I see a lot of questions which mention IQ. The only meaning I know outside photography is "intelligence quotient" but obviously IQ has some other meaning here. IQ is used for example in "Lens with ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

What do the AF-A, AF-C, and AF-S autofocus settings mean?

My camera has these settings for autofocus, and I don't know what they mean. I suspect "A" is "Auto", and "C" is "continuous", but I have no idea what "S" 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
2answers
226 views

What is the Term for “Positional Photography”?

I’m wondering if there is a term for the kind of photos where the subject and the background together form an optical illusion that they are connected. The classic example is a photo of a person ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

What is “solid angle” and how does it relate to photography?

So, I was hanging out in the chat room, and hear mention of something called "Solid Angle". What is this, and how can it be important?
7
votes
3answers
779 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
2answers
4k views

What does “Non-Mfg Zoom Lens” mean?

When I was surfing keh I found "Non-Mfg Zoom Lenses" and "Non-Mfg Fixed Focal Length Lenses"? What is the meaning of "Non-Mfg"?
7
votes
4answers
4k views

What are the differences between a bridge camera and a D/SLR?

What are the differences between a bridge camera and a D/SLR?
7
votes
2answers
221 views

What does it mean to excite aliases?

I recently came across the phrase 'excited aliases.' The phrase seems to be related to lens sharpness in some way. While a web search turns up the phrase a few times, I am unable to locate a decent ...
7
votes
3answers
9k views

What is the definition of portrait photography?

Can we talk about a portrait photograph if, let's say, a grandmother and her 3-year-old grandchild are in the picture? Or, must it be only one person in the photograph?
7
votes
1answer
301 views

What is Colour Rendering Index (CRI)?

From this answer on white balancing a LED light I understood there's a thing called Colour Rendering Index (CRI). I understand it has something to do with how well lights reproduce the sun's colour ...
7
votes
1answer
6k views

What does “Tone” mean?

I hear "Tone", "Tonal scale/range" in the context of photography. What does it actually mean?
7
votes
2answers
288 views

At what point does “out of focus” become Bokeh?

As with the distinction between a big boat and a small ship, at what point can an out of focus background be considered "Bokeh"? Is it the point where the subject in the background (or foreground ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

What does “lifted blacks” mean?

What does "lifted blacks" mean? How does it affect your image? How do I do it in Lightroom?
6
votes
6answers
1k views

What type of software is Adobe Photoshop Lightroom?

I have heard or thought of many terms for what Lightroom is such as image management, digital asset management, photo editing software, and the list goes on and on. Does this package or type of ...
6
votes
7answers
728 views

How many pixels in a megapixel?

I am trying to find out the definition of a megapixel? Some references on the web place it at 1 million pixels, and other places say it is equal to 2^20 = 1,048,576 pixels.
6
votes
4answers
3k views

Are 2 megapixels enough for HD resolution pictures?

HD pictures has 1920x1080 = 2073600 pixels = 2025 kilopixel = 1.98 megapixel. Does this mean that we can take HD pictures with a 2 MP camera? If not, why not?
6
votes
4answers
6k views

What does “long exposure” mean?

Very often, when people are talking about photography, they use the expression "long exposure". Here's a quote from a recent answer: A tripod and long exposure were required for this shot. Where ...
6
votes
3answers
664 views

Why is the Nikon 35mm f/2D AF considered a Wide-Angle lens?

What makes the Nikon 35mm f/2D AF Wide-Angle Lens lens be considered wide-angle as compared to the Nikon 35mm f/1.8G AF-S DX Lens which isn't advertised as wide-angle?
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 ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

How does a fly-by-wire focusing lens work?

I have learnt that fly-by-wire focusing is an electrical manual focusing system. But how does this focusing method work? How do you manually focus with fly-by-wire? What is the scope of this ...
6
votes
3answers
629 views

What do the measurements for colour depth mean?

Colour depth is often referred to as being X bits. What does this mean and how does it effect a photograph? What scale is used, i.e. is it linear, exponential, logarithmic, etc.?
6
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the difference between a lambda print (RA-4) and a color inkjet print?

I can't seem to find any good information about the differences between the lambda printing process (on RA-4 paper, also known as a C-prints or chromogenic color prints) and inkjet printing (also ...
6
votes
2answers
4k views

What is CLA service?

I've seen the term used in used lens listings, e.g "recently CLA'd". I have a few questions, but I think they're related enough to only warrant one post: What does CLA stand for, and what is it? ...
6
votes
2answers
378 views

Do they make a single-leg stabilizer, similar to a tripod but with only one leg?

I'm looking for something that I can attach to my Nikon D5000 that will allow me to hold the camera steady, similar to a tripod, but MUCH lighter and easier to setup. I'm thinking it could also dub ...
6
votes
3answers
368 views

What does “DMC” mean?

I have seen "DMC" in many names of digital cameras. Is this an abbreviation? What does it mean? Some examples: Lumix DMC-TZ40 DMC-FZ200 DMC FT25
6
votes
2answers
494 views

What is bracketing?

I have seen this term a lot and I was wondering what, in basic terms, what bracketing/autobracketing is. Also, why would one want to 'bracket'? P.S. - there are other questions asking what DoF and ...
6
votes
1answer
304 views

What is Coating?

I see the word "Coating" in different questions (related to lenses and filters). What is Coating, Multi-Coating, and Nano-Coating? Update: For Coating Definition see Matt's answer For ...
6
votes
1answer
397 views

What does “distortion <XX%” mean in lens specs?

I'm going to buy a lens and I would like to understand what "distortion <XX%" means. It's a vari-focal 10-60mm lens, and mentions distortion <12-1%. According to my understanding, at 10mm focal ...
5
votes
3answers
740 views

What are the different categories of photography?

After reading some questions, I am getting lost with stage photography, curtain photography? etc.. I only know portrait, landscape, street, sports etc..is there a standard lingo somewhere?
5
votes
2answers
347 views

How is the term Gaussian blur used?

Is the term Gaussian blur used strictly in post-production, or can it also be used as a term for an out-of-focus area in your image when you-re taking the picture? I'm pretty sure that bokeh is used ...
5
votes
1answer
716 views

What is the meaning of “Blue Hour” and its differences from “Golden Hour?”

What does "Blue Hour" exactly mean? What time in the day can I capture this "Blue Hour" and how long is it? Also, what are its differences from the "Golden Hour"?
5
votes
1answer
266 views

Why would a photographer do focus stacking?

Recently, I come across the term called Focus Stacking where you combine different pictures with different focus points. My question is, why do the focus stacking? Are there any benefits from the ...
5
votes
2answers
319 views

What is an independent flash called?

By "independent flash" I mean a flash which is not attached with the camera by default. What is the technical name for it?
5
votes
5answers
470 views

What is it called when multiple photos are adjusted for further blending?

I have taken a series of noisy photos without a tripod. I want one less noisy version, so I need average them down to one photo. But details of the individual images do not exactly match, so that ...
5
votes
1answer
479 views

How to figure out whether the colours in a photo are warm or cool, and how does that matter?

On 1x some people have said that this picture has warm colours. I wish to understand what qualifies to be a warm colour, cool colour, and how does that matter? Warm means bright? and Cool means ...
5
votes
2answers
355 views

What is term for the opposite of “Dragging the Shutter”?

My first helpful experiments with flash started after taking a seminar with Scott Kelby on the subject. I don't recall him mentioning dragging the shutter (but he may have). But, I do recall him ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the EV scale?

I have seen an "EV" (exposure value) scale that's sometimes used to express a camera's exposure settings, or scene brightness. How exactly does this scale work?
5
votes
1answer
622 views

Choosing a Gitzo Tripod head - deciphering series, model #, etc

I recently purchased a Gitzo Mountaineer tripod, the GT0541. It is a Series 0 (not really sure what that means), 4 section with ground-lock capability. The G-Lock capability has been really nice for ...
4
votes
5answers
2k views

What's the difference between exposure and shutter speed?

Is there a difference between exposure and shutter speed, or are the terms interchangeable? I read that "If you use a quick shutter speed, you can just raise the exposure to compensate." Is this ...
4
votes
1answer
529 views

What is an auto-focus motor?

I recently bought a Canon 550D, and I read it has an auto-focus motor, which not all cameras possess. I'd like to know what it is, and what I can do to keep it running smoothly; AFAIK the manual ...
4
votes
3answers
8k views

What does “the telephoto end” and “the wide angle end” of a zoom lens mean?

In the Canon Rebel T3i Manual, page 59, it's mentioned that "If you have a zoom lens, use the telephoto end to fill the frame with the subject from the waist up." Same note on page 61 and another one ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the difference between a point-and-shoot and a mirrorless?

Both point-and-shoot camera and mirrorless cameras seems to be mostly similar in the way they work. So, What are the differences between a point and shoot and a mirrorless camera? Is a mirrorless ...