I don't do interior shots, but I do see a lot of them these days because I am house hunting. If you look at high end houses on Redfin.com, you can see typical examples done by professional photographers. Just eyeballing it, they seem to mostly be 16-24mm. Is that a correct impression or do they typically use a wider lens than this? As an example, here a typical shot:

enter image description here

I would guess this was taken by a 16mm full frame equivalent lens. Is that right? Is there a mechanical way to figure out what the focal length of the lens is from examining the image?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Most of your question is about the typical practices of real estate photographers. Your last sentence is not and should probably be a separate question. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Mar 30, 2018 at 16:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ yeah, that's two separate questions. There is some answers already to the second Q: photo.stackexchange.com/questions/21616/… Yo ualso can reverse-engineer this Q as "what is useful for real estate photography?" i.e. photo.stackexchange.com/questions/8204/… \$\endgroup\$ Mar 30, 2018 at 16:51
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    \$\begingroup\$ Is that a purple paisley built-in bench seat? I don't know why I'm so incredibly intrigued by that. \$\endgroup\$
    – OnBreak.
    Mar 30, 2018 at 17:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ You can see the tiles on the floor. From left to right edge I would assume an angle of ~85-90°. That would require a lens of ~18-20mm focal length @35mm sensor. \$\endgroup\$
    – Gerhardh
    Mar 31, 2018 at 13:29

1 Answer 1


The equipment and methodology can vary greatly from one real estate shooter to the next.

Some use the Canon 11-24 on FF, many use the Nikon 14-24 also on FF. The Canon 14mm/2.8 is another one. The 10, 11, or 12-whatever lenses and even the Sigma 8-16mm lenses on APS-C are also popular. These are all rectilinear lenses.

Then there are the photographers that do pan and stitch either with a conventional lens or with the shift movements of a Tilt/Shift or Perspective control lens. Since a lot of that is also exposure bracketed for HDR/exposure fusion, your sample image could be a composite of as many a 4x3 grid with anywhere from 3 to 5 to 7 bracketed shots at each position. Such time consuming work is usually only done for very high end properties.

On the other end of the scale, since many real estate clients don't require very high resolution, compact cameras, which make large depth of field easier, are also popular. These can be something like Micro Four-Thirds interchangeable lens cameras or even a fixed lens compact with a very wide angle of view.

There are a few specialized cameras designed particularly to be used for real estate interiors. The Matterport system uses a series of scans with a specialized 2D/3D camera to build a very detailed 3D model of a space from which virtual tours and 2D views can be generated.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I think you weirdly missed out from your list the biggest group O_o At least 90% of real estate agents use their cellphone. \$\endgroup\$
    – motoDrizzt
    Mar 31, 2018 at 21:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ @motoDrizzt Look at the MLS listings for higher end properties like the example in the question. Not many straight cellphone images in that space. The question does specify high end listings. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Mar 31, 2018 at 21:17

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