Which lens should I buy for my camera?
It’s such a simple question, but choosing the right lens or lenses is actually one of the most important photographic decisions you can make. Nothing affects the quality of a photo more than the lens. It’s no longer just about the megapixels—it’s the glass that makes all the difference!
Many first-time buyers of DSLRs don’t venture past the basic lens included in the box. While some are reluctant to spend more money, others are confused by all the buzzwords or are overwhelmed by all the choices out there. It’s really a shame, because interchangeable lenses give you amazing scope for quality photography.
Take in vast sweeping scenes with a wide angle lens. Capture faraway birds with a telephoto lens. Examine the tiniest detail of a flower with a macro lens. Record the perfect portrait with a prime lens. Anything is possible when you choose the right lens for the job!
This book isn’t a simple catalogue of available lenses. New products are coming out all the time, and comparing specific lenses can be difficult. Instead, author N.K. Guy gives you all the information you need to make smart buying decisions. Optical technology is demystified, arcane terminology is decoded, and practical tips are provided.
The Lens will help you build the perfect lens collection to suit your needs—now and in the future.
8 x 10in
wepsphoto (verified owner) February 6, 2019
NK Guy’s The Lens is, without question, one of the best books about technical photography that I have ever had the pleasure to read.
The title says it all- this book is about camera lenses. Guy begins with chapters on optics, the physics of light and how the camera lens works to best deliver an image to film or sensor. He next takes lenses apart, describing the mechanisms by which they work and the varied designs, past and present, that manufacturers have employed to enhance and differentiate their products. Lens and accessory choices are considered next, with an unbiased and honest approach to help the photographer most wisely invest in what is required for the desired results. Guy’s book concludes with advanced topics that are exquisitely pragmatic- touching on topics that help to differentiate quality of lenses (coatings, aberration, bokeh, etc.) specialty lenses (tilt and shift, mirror, etc.) and the very important decision of whether to purchase used lenses and, if you choose to, how to evaluate them (for sharpness, fungal growth, and scratches).
Guy’s greatest strength as an author is his ability to ascertain what a photographer really needs to know about lenses and, without ever down-talking, building a strong foundation of knowledge from the most basic to a truly thorough understanding about lenses, how they work, how they differ, and how to evaluate your own photographic needs. Guy does not hesitate to discuss brand names and objectively consider various manufacturers’ methods (I never realized that Canon telephotos were white so as to stay cooler due to temperature-sensitive coatings).
The appendices include the treasure of breaking down the various lens mount systems and manufacturer terms- it’s something of a translation dictionary that allows the deciphering of each company’s unique abbreviations and trade terms to be understood for what they really mean. This is a must-read for anyone looking to figure out the plethora of codes used in lens labeling.
In summary, this is a must read for the serious photographer. My only hope is that the book, published in 2012, will be updated every few years to reflect the current technologies and manufacturer specs, making it both a handbook and buying guide relevant into the future.
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