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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

5 tips on evaluating your lens before buying

Tip 1 (Check that the lens works on the body): This may seem a very obvious tip, but I have seen a couple of people get very impressed over a lens; they went ahead to buy it after doing a cursory check with their camera specs. Later they found that there was a mismatch because of which they were not able to use the lens to its full potential. Before drooling over that lens and whipping out the money, be sure to check whether it works with your camera.

Tip 2 (When buying ultra zoom lenses, check for color blurring): For telescopic lens, there is a problem known as color blurring that happens as the lens is beig used at its maximum focal length. This problem can be corrected inside the lens itself through the various lens elements, but you should check to make sure that the lens you are buying has this reduced to the maximum possible.

Tip 3 (Evaluate the need for silent): Some lens make sounds when they are being used, such as the sounds of the focusing motor being clearly audible. This is a huge impediment when you are a photo-journalist, or shooting wildlife. Be sure to check out the sound levels of your lens, rather than be stuck with an advance warning signal that scares off animals.

Tip 4 (Check for lens ruggedness): For people who travel a lot, or who take shots in conditions that are not controlled, it is important that your lens have a proper tripod mount, be packed well in a case that reduces shock, and the lens itself is rugged and water prood (depends on the usage).

Tip 5 (Try out a lens before buying): You are getting a great deal on a lens bargain (either from a friend or a sale on the internet), but you have not used the lens yourself, not even held it and tried to use it. Avoid such situations; you need to have tried out the lens before buying it so that you know that the lens options, feel on the hand, and hefting is all comfortable to you. Being able to take quick snap shots depends on how comfortable you are with your camera and lens.

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