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Lens Buying Guide

Check this handy guide to camera lenses that will give you the right focal length for your photography skills. Actually, there is nothing like the best lens to buy, it's about the kind of photography you do, that defines which lens you need to buy.

In this article, we will see - 

  • Compatibility

  • Lens

  • Which Lens is best for which      type of photography 

So let's begin… 

Like all other professional photographers, I will also emphasize on buying Lenses. Whatever budget you have put a maximum on Lens and Less on camera, Why? Because… The lens can last long & camera you may change based on the change in technology or from the upgrade point of view.

Compatibility - 

Before you decide which lens to purchase, first make sure the lens will physically fit your camera.

For a camera with a cropped sensor size (also known as APS-C), you can choose from a wide range of full-frame and APS-C lenses. Most entry-level DSLR and mirror less cameras are designed with a cropped sensor size. 

APS-C lenses are typically more affordable than full-frame lenses; they are also smaller and lighter in size. The Nikon DX and Canon EF-S series are two examples of APS-C lenses.

Got confused, let understand with an example - If you have Crop Sensor camera with Kit lens (EF-S), now you want to upgrade the Camera to Full frame, then your existing Kit Lens is not compatible with it, so you need to plan your budget from Camera & Lens as well.

Lens -  Focal Length - 

This defines the lens's angle of view, or how wide the image is. A shorter focal length gives you a wider image, while a longer focal length allows you to zoom in for a narrow, closely cropped shot. The longer the focal length, the closer you can zoom in on a distant subject. Many entry-level DSLRs come with an 18–55mm lens in the package, which is a good choice as a general-use lens. & For more zoom power, you'll need a telephoto lens, which typically falls within the 55–300mm range.


Some Important points to keep in Mind regarding sensor size and lens focal length - 50mm focal length, will produce different results on a cropped-sensor camera than on a full-frame camera. 

The angle of view (how wide the image is) will be narrower on a cropped-sensor camera, which means if you attach a 50mm full-frame lens to a cropped-sensor camera, the lens will act more like a 75mm or 80mm focal length, depending on the camera brand.

  • Canon APSc - 1.6x Crop Factor      

  • Nikon APSc- 1.5x Crop Factor

Here is the calculation 

  • Canon Camera- APSc - Lens      50mm * 1.6x crop factor = 80mm

  • Nikon Camera-APSc - Lens 50mm      * 1.5x crop factor = 75mm

Types of Lens - 

There is a wide variety of camera lenses, and therefore different focal lengths, are better suited to certain types of photography; 

  • Standard lens (focal length 35mm to 70mm): These versatile lenses are good for just about any type of photography, from portraits to landscapes. These all-in-one lenses render images roughly the way the human eye sees the world, and easily adjust to a shallow or deep depth of field, depending on aperture.

  • Ultra wide-angle (focal length 8mm to 24mm): These lenses are sometimes called fisheye lenses, which have a very wide viewing area. While they can take an image of up to 180 degrees around the lens, they distort the image quite significantly, making everything appear almost as if inside a sphere.

  • Standard wide-angle (focal length 24mm to 35mm): Smaller focal lengths and a wider angle can distort images. With a lens of this size, distortion is minimal      and the image appears more natural. Pretty much everything is in focus unless your subject is very close to the camera and there is less spatial distortion than a very wide lens.

  • A telephoto lens (focal lengths 70mm to 300mm or more): These lenses are ideal for picking out a distant subject, the way a telescope does. Good for compressing your subject and the background, which makes the background appear much closer to the subject. quite often have a shallow depth of field unless everything you’re shooting is far away.

How to Select Camera Lens?

  • Best beginner camera lens. The 50mm is the most popular starter lens, as it strikes a nice balance between field of view and depth of field, and doesn’t require any thought process to put on focal length to produce a crisp image. 

  • Best lens for travel photography. Travel photography is unique in that you’ll want to travel light, but have the option of capturing a lot of detail. A      standard zoom lens allows you to adjust your focal length, giving you enough flexibility to get each shot.

  • Best lens for sports photography. Telephoto zoom lenses offer longer focal lengths that are ideal for capturing action-packed scenes setting far away.

  • Best lens for landscape photography. Before heading out on an outdoor adventure,      consider grabbing two lenses: a wide-angle (or ultra-wide-angle), as well as a standard lens. With landscape photography, you want to have the flexibility to capture both scale and detail.

  • Best lens for portrait photography. Fixed lenses (also known as prime lenses)      with focal lengths between 35mm and 70mm make great portrait lenses. The lack of zoom options on a fixed lens ensures clarity of the image for portraits (so no fuzzy or blurry faces).

  • Best lens for macro photography. A telephoto lens of at least 200mm is best for macro photography. The focal length of this powerful lens can capture subtle details from afar.

  • Best lens for architecture photography. A standard wide-angle lens features a      decent field of view to capture most, if not all, of a building or cityscape.

  • Best lens for street photography. As with portrait photography, street photography benefits from the unique, clear look that standard fixed lenses produce. If you want to get creative, however, opt for a standard zoom lens and use focal lengths to play with your subject’s size in relation to the background.

  • Best lens for wildlife photography. Telephoto zoom lenses come in handy for potentially dangerous situations or scenarios in which you want to capture a scene without disturbing the subjects. Wildlife can be unpredictable, and a telephoto lens with a long focal length helps ensure you can keep enough distance between yourself and wildlife while still getting the shot.

So now you got all the information required to upgrade or buy a new lens.

Thank you.

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