The first major investment a new photographer makes is their camera. The second, often, is a new lens.
With a bevy of lenses to choose from, it’s essential to know what makes each unique and what available models offer the most advantages.
One of the most popular options for their new lens is those of the wide angle variety.
To better understand their ubiquity in the camera bags of photographers across the world, let’s dive deeper into what a wide angle is and how to use them effectively.
A wide angle lens features a wide field of view and short focal length.
Using a wide angle lens results in a photo that captures much more of the environment surrounding the subject of the image. To many, a photo taken with this lens gives the viewer the impression that they’re viewing the actual
scene themselves as opposed to simply looking at a photograph.
An extreme example of a wide-angle lens is the fisheye lens. If you’ve ever seen a photo that appears to bubble outward in the center and distort the image, you’ve seen the result of using a fisheye lens.
There are zoom versions of wide angle lenses as well as prime, or non-zoom lenses. Those that prefer the prime version generally cite their price, ease-of-travel, and superior image quality. With a zoom lens, you’re getting a
lens that matches versatility with a higher cost and often more weight.
A wide angle lens allows a photographer to get very close to their subject while still capturing a significant portion of the larger scene.
So, the wide angle lens is common with those who photograph larger than life images, like architecture, cityscapes, and natural wonders. Photojournalists also utilise this lens quite often to help demonstrate the size of the
scene they’re witnessing.
You don’t have to be a professional, though, to find a use for this lens.
It can offer dramatic snapshots while you’re on vacation, at a live event, or people-watching in the city. Skywatchers can also utilise their wide angle lens for photos of the cosmos.
For those that don’t know, the millimeter (mm) measurement on a camera lens represents its focal length.
The focal length of the lens is the optical distance between the point where light rays meet to form an image and the digital sensor or film.
As this number decreases, the size of the scene the camera captures grows larger.
A wide angle lens has a focal length of no more than 35mm. Anything less than 20mm is considered an ultra wide angle lens.
Most wide angle lenses with a zoom can have a focal length range of 16mm to 35mm. A rectilinear or fisheye lens generally won’t top 17mm.
Wide angle lenses offer a variety of benefits that other lenses can’t meet.It’s an excellent tool for shooting stills of large scenes, such as gatherings, natural phenomena, and landscapes or cityscapes.
Those types of photos are difficult to replicate with the standard 50mm lens.
To match what you would capture with an image taken with a 16mm lens, you’d have to take around a dozen images then stitch them together through a photo editing program. If you only took a half dozen images, you’d maybe have
success recreating what you would capture with a 28mm lens.
Using a wide angle lens also forces you to think about photography and composition differently. When first using this type of lens, many people try to include too much in their image.
With practice, though, it becomes easier to compose snapshots that highlight your subject as well as the scene around it.
If you’re ready to add a wide angle lens to your camera bag, it’s important to know which wide angle models are superior. Here are three lenses we recommend taking a look at if you are in the market for a wide angle lens:
The Tokina ATX-I 11-20mm lens has several brilliant features that help produce high-quality photographs.
Its 11-20mm focal length means it’s considered an ultra wide angle lens and capable of capturing a large image. It provides excellent performance in low light conditions and better control over the depth of field when compared
to other lenses in its price range.
This makes it an ideal choice for those who shoot video or photograph stills. This lens is also built to be durable. It’s composed of metal parts within the lens to add stability and increase its lifespan. Its water repellent
coating adds to its solid construction as well as makes it easier to clean.
Overall, this is a well-balanced lens for its price. The other lenses listed here are around three to five times more expensive.
The Zeiss Milvus 18mm f/2.8 ZE carries with it an impressive array of benefits for photographers of all skill levels.
Like most it is sealed from dust and splashes of water and features a comfortable grip, providing a pleasing haptic experience when adjusting focus. This lens is manual focus only, so keep that in mind before purchasing as it
obviously makes it less versatile than the other options. However, the lack of autofocus means that Zeiss was able to refine all the optics and other internals to create the best possible image quality and user experinece. This
results in startlingly high-quality photographs.
Sitting in the middle of the price range set by the two lenses before, the Sigma 14-24mm f/2.8 DG DN Art is optimised for full-frame mirrorless
cameras. Making it both smaller and lighter than the previous options, without sacrificing image quality.
However, just like the Zeiss Milvus model, the Sigma lens is designed to create beautiful images in a diverse array of locations. It’s constructed to be both dust and splash-proof and includes a water and oil-repellent coating
on the front of the lens.
If you are ready to purchase high-quality wide angle lenses that are both affordable and functional, look no further than C.R. Kennedy.
C.R. Kennedy is one of Australia’s leading distributors of cameras and photographic equipment. We offer a wide range of DSLR, mirrorless, full-frame and action cameras.
If you need more information check out more articles on the C.R. Kennedy blog.
GUIDES FOR CAMERAS
GUIDES FOR CAMERA LENSES
GUIDES FOR PRO VIDEO
GUIDES FOR LIGHTING & STUDIO
GUIDES FOR PRINTING & FILM
GUIDES FOR AUDIO VISUAL
GUIDES FOR CAMERA ACCESSORIES
Get Free Shipping on all orders! No minimum spend! Items are dispatched from our Melbourne Warehouse within 24 Hours*
Shop with peace of mind knowing all items sold @ C.R.Kennedy & Co are backed by genuine manufacturers warranty.
Place a Click and Collect order online and pickup from your nearest warehouse.
C.R. Kennedy is Australia’s leading importer and distributor of photographic equipment. Our head office and main warehouse is located in Melbourne with branch offices and warehouses in Adelaide, Brisbane, Cairns, Perth and Sydney.
© 2023 C.R. KENNEDY.
All rights reserved.
UP TO 80% OFF ALL STOCKOnce it's gone, it's gone.Grab yourself a bargain!
STOCK DUE The product is not currently in stock however our best estimate of the date we are due to receive more stock is indicated by the date shown. This does not guarantee all orders placed will be able to be fulfilled from the stock we are receiving on this date but is the best date we are able to provide as an estimate.All displayed dates are subject to change without notice.Also note once we receive stock it may take a number of days for this stock to be sent to our customers
ON ORDER The product is on order with a supplier but not currently in stock and we do not have a clear enough date from our supplier as to when the stock is due to arrive.In this situation we cannot therefore provide an estimated availability date to you
NO STOCK The product is not currently in stock and we do not have this on order with a supplier. Our product page will display an estimated lead time if you were to place a no stock item on backorder
If you have questions about the availability of items on our web site or if you have placed an order for products not in stock and would like further information or wish to cancel your order please Contact Us and include the product code and/or order number so we can assist you further