You have a great camera, but you need to pair it with a great lens. These guides and apps simplify how to select the best lens for your camera.
When you buy a DSLR or mirrorless camera, it usually comes with a kit lens. But you can’t limit yourself to this alone. You should have at least one of the five common photo lenses for cameras, and maybe more if you have specialized interests in photography.
But buying the right lens can be a difficult process. Several experts review cameras and offer quizzes and quizzes to select one for you, but it’s a more limited list when it comes to goals. Still, there are these guides you can check out.
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1. What the lens (Web): Like photos, get lens recommendation
Most online lens buying guides are based on the fact that the user already knows a bit of what they want. But for hobbyists and beginners who lack technical knowledge, What The Lens takes a different approach by recommending lenses based on the images you like.
In the first step, you should ideally select a brand of camera and the category of photos that you are most likely to take with the new lens. What The Lens will then upload a number of photos. Go through the list and click on the ones you like, that is, these should be the types of photos you want to take with your new lens.
After liking 20 photos, the app will recommend a new lens that goes with your camera, along with links to buy it from Amazon or Adorama. You can also try the test with different categories of photos or select more photos in the same test to get a different lens recommendation.
2. Lensvana (Web): Detailed goal comparison tables
When you want to compare multiple lenses for your DSLR camera, you can line up their specifications in a neat spreadsheet. Lensvana has already done this for you, with a little extra data.
The catalog of 585 lenses includes all major brands, including Sigma and Tamron, and presents their details in a table. Data includes mount type, focus, focal length, aperture, filter thread size, minimum focus distance, length and weight, average Amazon custom rating, and price . It also indicates whether the lens has weather protection or image stabilization.
You can quickly filter the list by category, by lens mount type, zoom or primary lens, or by searching for the terms you are looking for. You won’t be getting reviews or other similar data at this point, so treat Lensvana as the first stop to make sure you get all the features you are looking for.
3. Objective vs objective (Web): Compare photos with two lenses
It’s hard to imagine exactly what photos would look like after purchasing a lens, which is often the most difficult factor when deciding between the two. Lens vs. Lens tries to give you a preview of what any photos will look like, even after you apply the settings.
First, add the two lenses you want to compare. The website already has a database of the most popular lenses, so you will likely find them. Immediately you will see photos taken with this lens by other photographers.
Lens vs Lens also allows you to fine-tune results based on focal length and aperture, which you can change for new photos. Set them to what you are likely to use on your own DSLR camera.
Click on an image to view a larger version and your mouse cursor acts as a magnifying tool. This allows you to compare the results of two lenses in as much detail as possible before trying them out with your own camera.
4. DOF Simulator (Web): View the look of the camera and lens
Like Lens vs. Lens, photographer Michael Bemowski made a virtual simulator to get a better idea of what a camera and lens will create together. The DOF simulator is an educational tool for depth of field (DOF) and bokeh effects, depending on various settings.
The app lets you choose a camera and lens before you start changing settings. You can have multiple models and backgrounds, the distance between the model and the camera, change the orientation between portrait and landscape, choose the focal length and aperture, and the framing.
Download: DOF Simulator for Windows | macOS | Linux (free)
Download: DOF Simulator for Android (free)
5. Mirrorless Lens Guides (Web): Best Guides to Buying a Mirrorless Camera Lens
Unless you are a professional photographer, it no longer makes sense to buy a DSLR camera. For enthusiasts, travelers and almost everyone, the mirrorless cameras are better than DSLRs . But it’s still a bit difficult to find the perfect lens for a mirrorless camera. We scoured the internet for options and found some good guides.
As part of its camera buying guides, Engadget wrote a great article that explains what to look for in mirrorless camera lenses. There are several mounts for each brand, especially between full frame cameras and APS-C cameras. It then recommends the best prime and zoom lenses for each major brand.
If you want to jump straight to the best goals, check out the summary of Photo District News . It’s a bit outdated, but you’ll get a clear recommendation for the 16 best mirrorless lenses, including third-party lens makers like Tokina and Venus Optics.
And as always, if you’re still confused, turn to the internet’s favorite camera and lens reviewer, Ken rockwell.
READ ALSO: How to Take Amazing Photos in Manual Mode
Lenses for types of photography
All of these apps and guides show that there is no “best” overall goal. You should purchase lenses based on the type of photos you are going to take most often.