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I have a Canon 80D and have a question about the aperture setting on the camera vs. the lens.

I know about aperture, and my understanding is it's similar to how your eye works in letting in more or less light. I also see certain (expensive) lenses offer customizable aperture settings.

So if the camera body offers an aperture setting as well as the lens, then how do those 2 work together?

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    \$\begingroup\$ What specific lens(es) are you using with your 80D that have aperture rings on the lens? \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Sep 8, 2021 at 19:58

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The aperture is physically on the lens, basically vanes that open and close to make more or less light hit the sensor. There is no aperture on the camera itself. On most cameras these days, the aperture in the lens is controlled by electronics in the camera body. So what likely appears as 'aperture' on the camera is really just the controls to change the aperture on the lens itself.

Some specialist lenses or even some very old pre-DSLR lenses had manual aperture. There is no automation due to the age of the system or in the case of cinema lenses, they prefer external manual settings, including focus for very different reasons. In any case, these lenses often do not respond to the electronics in the camera and must be set manually. However, the aperture is essentially the same, but set by a 'ring' on the lens.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ It is not either or. There are lenses that provide both on lens and in camera aperture control. Pentax A for example. There is an A setting on the aperture dial that allows control by the camera. Similar controls are offered on some cameras with built in lenses and light meters that provide shutter priority. The Olympus 35 RC for example has an A setting on the aperture dial that allows for automatic exposure. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 7, 2021 at 19:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ Wecould also add to this that with auto aperture, all measurements (exposure and focus) are done with the lens wide open, and that the aperture is set to the required value just before the picture is actually taken. \$\endgroup\$
    – xenoid
    Sep 7, 2021 at 20:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ @xenoid You are talking about two different concepts here. What you describe is an automatic diaphragm, which is usually fully open and does not close to the set value until the shutter is released, but before the actual exposure is made and then opens again. What Bob is talking about is two different ways of setting the working aperture, either by setting it on the lens or by setting it or having it automatically controlled by light metering in the camera. These two functions are two different things. \$\endgroup\$
    – jarnbjo
    Sep 8, 2021 at 14:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ This question is specifically about using a Canon 80D with various lenses, presumably in the Canon EF mount, since no use of an adapter is mentioned in the question. Further, since the registration distances of the Canon EF mount and Pentax K mount are 44mm and 45.46mm, respectively, it's highly doubtful even any adapted lenses would be Pentax "A" lenses since less than 1.5mm is not much room to make an adapter. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Sep 8, 2021 at 20:06

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