I have a Sony DSC-H3. I'd like to buy some new lenses for it for experimentation purposes. Specifically, I'd like to get a telephoto lens. The only issue is, I can't figure out which one to get. The official Sony one has been discontinued, and I'm seeing conflicting reviews for a few possible candidates on Amazon and Ebay.

Does anyone have a suggestion for a telephoto lens?



The Sony DSC-H3 is a superzoom camera with a permanently-attached lens. You can't really get new lenses for it in the same sense one might with an interchangeable-lens camera. There are some things sold as telephoto lenses for such cameras, but really they are "teleside converters" — secondary lenses which attach in front of the permanent lens. I don't have any specific purchase advice, but will note that such a lens is likely to add aberrations and reduce sharpness, particularly if it's cheap. You might get okay results, but you might actually do just as well by just cropping and enlarging.

If you're seriously interested in getting some new lenses for it for experimentation purposes, I highly suggest you start considering an interchangeable lens system — either a DSLR or one of the new mirrorless camera systems like Sony's NEX. This will have more sticker shock, but if you really want to experiment with photography, you're going to want something like that eventually anyway. Might as well start sooner rather than putting money in a different direction.

  • Makes sense. Strange though; I wonder why Sony sells the lenses for the DSC series when they should know that? Aug 1 '11 at 2:25
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    @SimpleCoder: That's easy. They want to take your money whichever way they can.
    – mattdm
    Aug 1 '11 at 2:32
  • Haha too true. Would you suggest that I avoid other secondary lenses (macro and wide-angle) as well? Aug 1 '11 at 2:36
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    @SimpleCoder - Its about expectations - they may be fun to try out, but putting additional cheap glass in front of the real lens, will pretty much always degrade. Macro, wide-angle, telephoto, you name it, its in the same boat. If you're expecting something 'neat', it may be ok . If you're expecting something really usable as quality picture...'eh', probably not.
    – rfusca
    Aug 1 '11 at 2:46
  • @rfusca: That's a little disappointing. But I appreciate it; I'm not sure that 'neat' photos are going to be worth the money. So, thank you for saving me the time and money :) Aug 1 '11 at 13:10

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