What kind of lens do I need, and what do all the numbers mean on the lens?

Time for a video presentation to show you how to choose a lens, and what can I learn from all those numbers on the lens.

Here is a review of those charts that was presented in the video:

I want to review those charts I made during this video so you had them for future reference:

This chart shows that with the normal lens being 28mm, by doubling the mm, you get into the telephoto range. Everything higher than a normal lens is a telephoto lens. Anything lower than a normal lens (28mm) is a wide angle lens.

Looking at the above chart you see that maybe you have something we call a zoom lens, or variable lens. That means that the lens you have covers a range of lenses all in one. So, my lens I got with my camera is an 18mm to 56 mm lens. So, it has wide angle, normal, and telephoto, all in one lens. Nice right.

This chart shows that the lens has different aperture numbers. Read the chart above so you can understand the other numbers on the lens.

Now, let’s take a look at a few lenses and discuss what they do:

The above lens has zoom range from 10 to 20mm. Wow, that has an incredible range in the wide angle, and it is certainly coveted by those who use wide angle a lot. And you can see the price point of this one too. F3.5 which means it doesn’t really let in a lot of light, but, I would guess that most people who use this lens, that is not important. But, at F22 or F32, this lens would be so super sharp for some great scenery photos.

This above lens is a nice lens who are looking for a nice lens that covers mostly the wide angle, and a bit into the telephoto. F4, makes me think that this is designed with extra special optics to warrant this price.

This lens from Nikon, is almost the same as the lens that I have, only it has the aperture range of 2.8. This 2.8 lens is 2.8 through the whole range from 17-55mm. That is why this is so expensive. It is a heavy lens, with a very large front element lens, using a 72mm lens cap.

Is there one lens that has everything in it that I need? Well, here it is: 18-400mm lens with an aperture from F3.5 at 18mm to F6.3 at 400mm. If you were to buy these lenses separately, they would probably have that F stop in it already. So, this lens is nice for all occasions.

And here is a lens that is very similar to the one I own. 70-300. Nice addition to what I already have. Not an ideal lens for low light shooting, as it has a maximum aperture at F4. Keep in mind that there are manufactures who make a 70-200 lens with a maximum aperture of F2.8, and priced at $1200.00!

So, knowing what you have learned from all of the above, can you guess which lens you want for this type of photo? Yes, a very big lens, so you wouldn’t have to be close to the subject.

And for scenery photos, like this, you want to capture as much of the area as possible, so a wide angle lens is the best.

And for portraits, so you don’t get distortion from the lens, a small telephoto lens is the ideal lens. Say from 55 up to 90mm is an ideal portrait lens.

I hope this helps. If you have questions, I now have an email hot line, just for asking questions and I can cover that in some future blog, or answer it directly for you. Go to: question.123photogo@gmail.com


Shooting with a smaller telephoto lens, such as a 80mm will give you the perfect portrait.

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