There are three types of lenses which are used accordingly by the photographers.
Normal Lens: A normal lens has a view angle similar to the human eye, it gives pictures a natural feel. It has an angle of view of 50-55 degree. Normal lenses are general purpose lens which can be used to photograph everything from portraits to a landscape. They have a wide aperture and thus can be used in indoor and low light photography.
Wide-angle Lens: A wide-angle lens covers a wider area than a normal lens. It has a focal length less than normal lens i.e. 16mm, 20mm, 35mm. A wide-angle lens can be used in landscape photography.
Telephoto Lens: A telephoto lens magnifies the distant object as they have the focal length longer than a normal lens. Telephoto lenses have a focal range starting from 70mm. A telephoto lens which has focal length longer or about 300mm are called a super telephoto lens. Telephoto lenses are used in wildlife or sports photography.
All single focal length lenses are called Prime Lens whereas lenses with multiple focal lengths are called Zoom Lens
Focal length/diameter of lens = f-stop
Maximum the f-stop of a lens the more light it will gather and will be a fast lens as the light transmitting is more.
18-55 mm –> mini zoom lens
70-200 mm –> medium zoom lens
200-500 mm –> long tele zoom lens
X-factor: It is the maximum focal length of a zoom lens divided by the minimum focal length of a zoom lens. It determines how much zoom can a lens have. Minimum x-factor gives better quality pictures, increase in x-factor will degrade the quality.
Prime lenses have the top quality of pictures.
A table showing different lenses and their types and where they can be used:
Lenses focal length
Types of Lens
21 mm or less
Extreme wide angle
21 mm to 35 mm
35 mm to 70 mm
70 mm to 135 mm
135 mm to 300 mm or above
Sports or wildlife
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