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help with lenses please
Hey.

I am new to DSLR photography, I have a nikon D80 with a nikon 18-135mm lens..

I have no idea about lenses and get constantly confused about which lenses do what and which ones are better then the others..

Can anyone help me and advise which lenses do what and what to look for when buying a lens, as I would have thought, the longer the zoom, the better for telephoto lenses, and the shorted to zoom for wide angle lenses. I see many lenses foe sale for many different prices and wonder how they differe, esp as the most expensive ones have shorter ranges etc..

I aim to get a macro lens, a wide angle lense and a longer telephoto lens, if anyone can reccomend any..

Any help is much appreciated..

Cheers..

Comments (8)

Go through informative article below:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photographic_lens.

In nutshall, less the optical defects (chromatic aberrations, barral/pincushion distortion, fuzzy corners, vignetting) and wider the max. aperture for the similar zoom range, more the price. Price also depends on construction material, fron element (rotating or non-rotating), type of motor drive, weather-proofness, zoom range (niche segment or common) etc..

Mickeyb1983 wrote:.

Hey.

I am new to DSLR photography, I have a nikon D80 with a nikon18-135mm lens..

I have no idea about lenses and get constantly confused about whichlenses do what and which ones are better then the others..

Can anyone help me and advise which lenses do what and what to lookfor when buying a lens, as I would have thought, the longer the zoom,the better for telephoto lenses, and the shorted to zoom for wideangle lenses. I see many lenses foe sale for many different pricesand wonder how they differe, esp as the most expensive ones haveshorter ranges etc..

I aim to get a macro lens, a wide angle lense and a longer telephotolens, if anyone can reccomend any..

Any help is much appreciated..

Cheers.

Best Wishes, Ajayhttp://picasaweb.google.com/ajay0612Thanks for visiting and leaving comments ..

Comment #1

Mickeyb1983 wrote:.

I see many lenses foe sale for many different pricesand wonder how they differe, esp as the most expensive ones haveshorter ranges etc..

That's a good observation. The reason is that the design compromises needed to give a lens a large zoom range tend to be detrimental to the image quality. If a manufacturer is designing a lens for the consumer market, the appeal of a big zoom range might be more important than top-notch image quality. But when designing a lens for the professional market, image quality is more important than zoom range - so the design compromises are shifted away from zoom range...

Comment #2

Steve Balcombe wrote:.

That's a good observation. The reason is that the design compromisesneeded to give a lens a large zoom range tend to be detrimental tothe image quality. If a manufacturer is designing a lens for theconsumer market, the appeal of a big zoom range might be moreimportant than top-notch image quality. But when designing a lens forthe professional market, image quality is more important than zoomrange - so the design compromises are shifted away from zoom range..

Very succinctly put!.

In particular good low light lenses with a maximum aperture like f/1.4 are always prime (i.e non-zoom) lenses and good low light zoom lenses which have a maximum aperture typically of f/2.8 throughout their zoom range are never more (or at least much more) than a 3x zoom..

You will find some reviews of lenses on this site but a better selection here:.

Http://www.photozone.de/Reviews/overviewhttp://www.slrgear.com/reviews/showcat.php/cat/2.

And exclusively Nikon lenses at Thom Hogan's site:.

Http://www.bythom.com/nikon.htm.

Chris Elliott.

*Nikon* D Eighty + Fifty - Other equipment in Profile.

Http://PlacidoD.Zenfolio.com/..

Comment #3

Just some picks that I'd consider..

Wide: 10-20 Sigma. This is a great lens. There is also a new 11-16 Tokina f2.8 that is getting good reviews. It's very reasonably priced about $100 more than the Sigma and $300 less than the Nikon. Tokina traditionally has a great build but too much CA distortion me..

Macro: Either the Nikon 60 AF-D f2.8 Micro or Tamron 90 f2.8 Macro. If you want to combine macro with medium telephoto, the Sigma 150 f2.8 is great. You have to learn how to get the most out of it because of the extra thin DOF..

I'm not sure what you're going to use a long telephoto for. A good choice might be the 70-300 vr Nikkor. For less money and less range the 55-200 VR Nikkor is a great choice..

If you wish to go over 300mm, it starts to get expensive in a hurry. Some reasonable choices are the new Sigma 150-500 OS and the Tamron 200-500mm. Both are slightly under $1000. I don't know anything about the Sigma, but the Tamron is the sharpest lens at 500 and under $1000 you can buy..

One of the best long telephoto zooms is the infamous Nikon 200-400 vr f4 zoom. This might be iarguably the best wildlife lens on the market, but costs over $5000 and is hard to find. The demand exceeds the supply..

Just some thoughts...

Comment #4

Mickeyb1983 wrote:.

Hey.

I am new to DSLR photography, I have a nikon D80 with a nikon18-135mm lens..

I have no idea about lenses and get constantly confused about whichlenses do what and which ones are better then the others..

Can anyone help me and advise which lenses do what and what to lookfor when buying a lens, as I would have thought, the longer the zoom,the better for telephoto lenses, and the shorted to zoom for wideangle lenses. I see many lenses foe sale for many different pricesand wonder how they differe, esp as the most expensive ones haveshorter ranges etc..

I aim to get a macro lens, a wide angle lense and a longer telephotolens, if anyone can reccomend any..

Any help is much appreciated..

Cheers.

There are some very informative posts above answering your question. But I have a question for you..

If, as you say you 'have no idea about lenses and get constantly confused about which lenses do what and which ones are better then the others', why do you want some more? At the moment you appear to be in the position of a novice in a hardware shop who thinks 'I don't know what these tools are and what they do but I'll buy a few anyway on the off chance that one of them will do something I want.'.

You have a good camera with a very versatile general-purpose lens which will do everything that a beginner could need. You would be better to wait until you have learnt how to use your new kit, what you can do with it and what you can't, and what sorts of things you like to photograph - and then you can make a much more informed choice for your next purchase..

Best wishesMike..

Comment #5

Here is something that used to hold true prior to digital camera bodies..

It still does but just not as much and it has to do with money. I have found that with photo equip you really do get what you pay for..

But...it used to be that the optics were everything and the body reguardless of the brand or price mainly just held the film in the camera and the lens took all the credit for a clear sharp image. (except for Leica which held the film tighter and flatter against the film plane than others.).

Now bodies have a good deal to do with this as well but it still holds true about optic quality....just buy the best that you can afford because there is a difference and usually $ is the indicator..

Have fun is another huge factor.'The moment you think your great is the moment you quit learning.'http://www.gawalters.comhttp://garyw1.smugmug.com/..

Comment #6

Garyw1 wrote:.

Just buy the best that you canafford because there is a difference and usually $ is the indicator..

Although that is largely true, there is no point in buying a really good but unsuitable or unnecessary lens..

The best advice has already been offered - the OP should use what he has for a while, until he has learned the basics and got a feel for what he can do, and can't do, with his present lens. If he's a quick learner it'll only take a few weeks...

Comment #7

Lenses are like cars..

There are far too many models available..

Features and benefits ovrlap greatly..

It's possible to really get specialized..

It's easy to pay for too much for no real benefit except impressing other people..

There's high performance available you'll never use..

There are some bargains..

The Leica M-3 is the 300SL of cameras, and the M4-P is the XK-E..

Whereas most people can get along well with just one or maybe two cars, you can actually benefit for a couple more lenses than that..

Focal length is a measurement of how long the lens is, but it's "optical" length., because of the way glass bends light..

Focal length controls the field of view how much does the lens "see.".

The size of the film being used, or the sensor in the camera, affects how much the lens sees. Bigger the sensor, the more the lens sees for any specific focal length. (This gets confusing, and is the reason for the so-called crop factors like 1.5 and 1.6 and 2).

For example, a 50mm lens on a 1.6 camera (Digital Rebel with a small sensor) sees less than a 50mm lens on a Canon 1D (1.3, slightly bigger sensor) and in turn a Nikon D3 or a 35mm film camera sees more than the 1.6 (this 1.3 size sensor / film is the base against which the 1.3, 1.6, etc are determined). And if you have medium format film camera taking bigger film, the 50mm lens sees even more..

How much the lens "sees" determines it's classification as wide angle, normal, telephoto, and it's subjects. And, as we note above, the focal length plus the format / size determines what it sees..

And, just like cars, there are lots of subsets..

Because there are so many sensor sizes, the industry has evolved into providing comparisions based on one size lots of people understand; the 35mm film size..

So, our 50mm lens is a normal or standard lens when on a 35mm film camera; it's the Honda Accord of lenses, with lots of models on either side, and very good for a great many purposes..

On a smaller sensor camera (Digital Rebel) it sees less, and is a short telephoto..

On a bigger sensor (really expensive) or 645 size film, it's a moderate wide angle..

In the Nikon D80 world (and all other NIkon D-SLR cameras except the new D3) the classes are, roiughly:.

10 - 15 mm: ultra wide angle15 - 24 mm; wide angle28 - 35 mm; normal or standard40 - 60 mm; short telephoto70 - 85/90, maybe 100/105 mm; moderate telephoto135 - 300 mm; long telephotoanything longer than 300 is an ultra telephoto.

And like cars, people can argue whether that four-door Mercedes is really a coupe just because Mercedes says it is..

F stops and aperture refer to the hole the light passes through. AGain, as with engines, the bigger the better, to a point. Just like AMG at Mercedes and M-series at BMW, really wide apertures impress people but mostly don't get you to your destination any quicker, because of laws of pick one physics or traffic cops..

Mostly you'll drive along just at, slightly below in town and slightly above on the highway, the speed limit. Or take pictures at f5.6-8-11.

Rarely you'll want to accelerate around the dump truck that's f2 or faster or your foot pressed to the floor..

Hope this helps. There's lots more to learn and the key, relaly, is not to worry too much about what you don't know to start with; just see what shots you can't take that you want, and then learn what you need to accomplish this..

BAK..

Comment #8

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This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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