lenses

Are grey market lenses OK to buy?

Sony A6000

Episode 1532

Paul from Columbus, OH

Paul's daughter dropped her Sony A6000 camera lens into the sand and the repair facility wants $141. She can get a new one for that, which is "bulk international lens." Leo says that chances are it's a grey market item, which comes with no warranty. If that was a camera, Leo would say no. But with a Lens, it's less of an issue. One thing she'll have to be careful of is that more than half the stuff sold on Amazon isn't sold by Amazon, it's just fulfilled by Amazon. So she does run a risk if Amazon doesn't ship it. If it's a reputable company with decent ratings, it should be OK.

Chris Marquardt on Photography

Chris Marquardt

Episode 1518

Chris wants to talk about macro lenses today. Designed to get really up close shots with very shallow depth of field, a Macro lens is a great way to get up close and personal. There are 50-100mm macro lenses, which are designed to get up close without being close. It's called the "flight distance." There's a macro lens on Kickstarter which is also a wide angle lens as well. It's called the Laowa 24mm F/14 probe lens, which lets you get super close without getting the camera in the way. But at $1400, it's a very specialized lens.

Chris Marquardt on Photography

Chris Marquardt

Episode 1494

This week, Chris wants to talk about Tilt-Shift photography. Tilt-Shift is where a photographer makes things look smaller, like a toy, with sharp center and out of focus edges, like shooting a macro shot. You can do it by using a specially designed lens that will shift off the focal plane. LensBaby is best known for their Tilt-Shift lenses, but Chris says it isn't strictly Tilt-Shift. They start at around $700 for a cheap one. So think buying used, or even renting it.

What camera should I get my granddaughter within a $500 price range?

http://www.nikonusa.com/en/nikon-products/product/dslr-cameras/d3400.html

Episode 1421

Chris from Rancho Cucamonga, CA

Chris has a granddaughter that wants to take professional pictures, but Chris doesn't want to spend much more than $500. For $600, Leo recommends the Sony Alpha a6000Mirrorless Digital Camera with 16-50mm Power Zoom Lens, which is an affordable body that leaves room for more lenses if the photography hobby gets serious. Leo also recommends the Nikon D3400 DSLR Camera 2 Lens Bundle, which comes with a broad range of lenses and a memory card.

What lens should I buy my daughter for her camera?

Canon EF 50mm F1.8

Episode 1391

Becky from Panama City, CA

Becky's daughter wants to be a professional photographer and wants to know what to get her that is affordable. She currently uses a Canon Rebel XT with interchangeable lenses. Leo says that getting her a prime lens like an EF 50mm F1.8 is great because it's fast and sees roughly what the eye sees. It will also train her to shoot and compose images professionally. It's great for portraits and street photography. It's also very good in low light.

Why can't my camera read my SD cards?

Pentax istD

Episode 1367

Evelyn from Kenai Peninsula, AL

Evelyn fears she's broken her camera because her SD cards can't be read. Leo suspects that she pulled out the card while it was writing and it damaged the reader in the camera. She may be able to reset the camera, which she can find information for in the manual. That could bring it back to default settings, which could solve the problem. She could also download the firmware for the camera and reflash it.

Chris Marquardt

Chris Marquardt

Episode 1210

Chris says that you don't need a Macro or Wide Angle lens. There are plenty of ways to turn your current lenses into both.

1) Get an extension ring. It goes between the camera/lens increasing the distance. It reduces the minimum focal distance without affecting quality all that much. And you can get one with contacts to keep automatic functions.

2) You can also get a filter that acts as a magnifying flass. It needs to be "achromatic" to correct for color and distortion. But that's a good option as well.

Chris Marquardt

Chris Marquardt

Episode 1172

Chris is back and he's excited about a new lens he picked up. It's the Canon 24mm pancake lens. It's tiny! It has a fixed focal length, no zoom, and smaller glass elements. But the lens quality is fantastic. It's fast at F2.8. It uses a new focusing technology called a "stepping motor." This goes at variable speeds to focus depending on what you're doing. Another thing is that the focus is "fly by wire," so you don't have a haptic focus connection. It costs about $179.