A beginner’s guide to buying DSLR camera lenses
Photography, the art and science of creating images, has evolved with every passing year. Earlier photographers relied on the single-lens reflex or SLR, however with the advent of digital technology, professionals and amateurs have embraced DSLRs as a definite improvement upon simple point-and-shoot cameras.
The next question that pops up in the mind of an aspiring photographer is what type of lens would help him heighten the impact of his images. Well look no further, for we have compiled a list of lenses that would do wonders for your creation.
DSLR enables its user to change lenses based on different situations. Each lens listed below covers an angle of view based on which it is put under different categories. Please note that different types of lenses have different applications.
Many DSLRs come with kit lenses i.e. these lenses are offered as a package with the DSLRs. These are basic zoom lenses designed for everyday shooting. However, before upgrading from this entry level lens, one should understand a few basics and acquiring the right lens necessitates spending wisely and thinking about your interests.
Standard lens refers to lens in the 50mm focal length range (the distance from the lens to the sensor). Even lenses in the range of 40mm-60mm are now considered standard lens as they give us the human eye perspective. This lens is characterized by fixed focal length and wide aperture, making it perfect for low light photography. Its ability to achieve the bokeh effect makes it one of the best portrait lens.
Prime lens has a fixed focal length. Thus, if you wish to change the focal length of the composition i.e. get nearer or further away from the subject you will have to physically move closer or further away. Fixed focal length results in higher image quality and are used for nature, people, landscape and architecture photography.
The focal length of a Standard Zoom lens typically is 18mm-55mm, which is the best option for novices. Other examples of standard zoom lens include 24mm-105mm, 18mm-135mm, 18mm-105mm, 18mm-300mm etc. These lenses are often used for nature photography, landscape photography, portraits and even fashion photography.
The focal length of Wide Angle Zoom lens can be changed. Wide Angle lenses give us a wide perspective or “maximum view”, making them perfect for landscape and nature photography. Usually lenses with focal length under 35mm are considered wide-angle lenses, and the commonly used focal lengths are 10mm-20mm, 12-24mm, or 11-16mm. Wide angle lenses are available as prime lenses as well as telephoto zoom lenses. Keep in mind that very wide lenses will often distort your image a bit, especially at the edges of your photographs.
Fish Eye lens covers 180° of angle of view and is a special purpose lens. Fisheye lens has focal length of 8 mm or 15 mm. This lens has a convex curvature and thus the image taken is in an oval shape. This lens gives a wide-angle perspective distorted into a circular photograph. Fisheye lenses can be used for taking pictures of the huge crowd at a stadium or to take a warped portrait.
Telephoto (Prime) lens has focal length above 50mm. These are fixed focal length lens and give a narrower perspective. This lens also magnifies distant objects. Examples of this lens include 135mm, 200mm, 300mm, 400mm, 500mm, etc. It is suitable for wildlife, sports, street and portrait photography. Despite the high costs, this lens has several benefits like fast autofocus, exceptional image stabilization and details, good quality glass and big apertures at higher focal lengths.
Telephoto Zoom lens, as the name suggests, acts like a telescope. The range of focal length of this lens ends above 200mm. Usual examples are 70mm-200mm, 50mm – 500mm, 150mm – 500mm, 100mm – 400mm, 80mm – 400mm, 55mm – 250mm, etc. This lens is preferred by portrait, street, photography, wildlife and sports photographers.
Macro lens is designed for close focusing and for taking sharp and life size images of smaller objects like flower petals, snowflakes, water droplets, insects etc. It is like a microscope. It often has different focal lengths and the most preferred ones are 100mm and 180mm.This lens enables photographers to magnify smaller subjects and it renders sharp images even at high magnifications.
Any of these will be a fantastic addition to your camera kit. Happy clicking!