• Prime lenses – Why we love them so much

    Prime lenses – Why we love them so much

    So, what is a prime lens and what makes it so great?

    A prime lens is the opposite of a zoom lens. It has a fixed-focal-length, while a zoom lens has a variable focal length. It sounds like the prime lens is more difficult to shoot with since you can’t zoom in and out all the time. It actually makes you think a lot of the photos you’re taking because you have to move around so much. If you want a close up you go close. If you want a wider angle you walk further away. There are a lot of advantages in those lovely little lenses and comparing to the kit lenses that come with the camera they simply rock. Here are some examples:

    Better image quality

    I was just playing around with my camera and photographing smoke coming out of an incense stick but the image ended up being quite nice and sharp.


    These lenses are surprisingly cheep.

    Wide maximum apertures

    For me this is the most exciting aspect of 50mm primes (indeed, any prime lens). If you have a kit lens the long end (around 55mm) has an aperture of f5.6 or
    thereabouts. A prime 50mm lens has an aperture of f1.8 or wider. That’s over three stops. It makes a difference when shooting in low light as you can open up the lens rather than increasing ISO. It also helps you take photos with shallow depth-of-field.

    Once you have a prime lense you have to learn how to use it. Here are some things I use my 50mm for:

    Walk-around lens


    This was taken in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

    The autumn in Argentina can be pretty colorful.


    Close-up photography

    Good luck with your prime lens! And remember to have fun shooting with it!

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