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Properties of Camera Lenses
Category: Lenses
Updated 1 month ago by renan


Lens Properties

A lens system in a camera is quite sophisticated.  Inspite of all those mechanical and electronic components though, it is primarily an assembly of various lenses that is aimed to focus and to control the amount of light that goes to the sensor of the camera at a particular focal length. There are three main properties that must be considered in every camera lens.

1. Focal Length - The most basic property of a lens is it's focal length. It is the distance from the optical center of a lens to a point where parallel rays of light converges after passing through the lens (focal point).  This property dictates how much of the view in front of the camera will fit in the sensor, or the angle of view, and is typically measured in millimeters (mm). It is classified to three basic groups:

     a. Normal - A focal length of approximately 50mm on a full frame camera, represents what a typical eye can see.

     b. Wide Angle - Focal lengths that are less than 50mm will let in a much more of the view into the camera's sensor. Focal lengths that are shorter than the shortest side of the sensor is considered Ultra-Wide Angle. For full-frame sensors, that would be anything less than 24mm.

     c. Telephoto - Any focal length that is longer than 50mm will let you capture a much closer view of the image.  For full-frame cameras any lens that has a focal length longer than 300mm is considered Super-Telephoto.



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