Conceptually, a camera lens isn't a complicated piece of kit. Still, the quality of images photographer Mathieu Stern managed to take with his 3D-printed lens, featuring a single front element and mounted on his Sony Alpha 7ii, is still surprising. Only the blur and distortion in the corners gives the game away.
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So, you thought Canon had some ridiculously large lenses. The truth is, it ain't got nothing on the former Soviet Union, which came up with this fearsome beast — a 158kg, 1.3m lens for its spy satellites. Oh yeah, it's also for sale.
Video: When you're trying to convince photographers that an $15,000 camera lens is a worthy investment, sometimes you need more than a list of specs. So Canon created a short stop-motion video of its EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM lens disassembling itself and revealing all of its wonderfully complicated internal components.
If you've ever held a high-quality camera lens, the first thing you notice is the weight. Thanks to layers and layers of thick glass hunks inside, they end up being very heavy. However, thanks to research being done at Harvard on something called metalenses, one day those giant glass-filled lenses might be obsolete.
Technology is strange. As some things get smaller, like smartphones, others grow in size... like smartphones. OK, bad example there. How about camera lenses? Sure, advances in optics have allowed us to cram three (and a billion) lenses into one, but when it comes to taking photos, sometimes you just can't compromise. And Canon's rumoured 28-560mm EF doesn't sound like it will compromise, at all.
Lens accessories for smartphones are by no means a new idea, but they're often clunky, awkward to use, and far from something you'd want to try and squeeze into your pocket. These Blips lenses are a different story: They attach to your smartphone like a piece of tape, and are slim enough to carry alongside your credit cards.
Properly lighting a tiny subject when doing macro photography is tricky since your camera ends up so close to it. A ring light surrounding the lens is one solution to the problem, and it looks like Canon might soon be releasing a macro lens featuring an LED ring light built right in.
Canon has its red-ringed L lenses for professional (read: cashed-up) photographers, and Nikon has its own gold-ringed competitors. Sony's the newest entrant into the ring (ha, get it) with its G Master professional lenses; the first three pieces of likely-very-expensive glass for its full-frame E-mount cameras fill two of the three most-demanded focal length ranges for serious snappers.
They say the best camera is the one you have with you, but sometimes the fixed lens on your smartphone can limit your creativity. So Zeiss, makers of some of the finest camera glass out there, is finally making high-quality external lenses for the iPhone 6s including a telephoto, a wide-angle and a zoomable macro option.
Feeling constrained by your camera's kit lens? Want to get up close to the action, to capture a time-lapse video, to capture a beautiful Brenizer method photograph? There are a few things you can do in your camera's settings, and a few different lenses you can try out, that can supercharge your photography and expand your skills.
In tandem with a novel way to waste money, Snapchat now offers a new way to scare the shit out of your friends. It's called "Lenses" and I never want to use it again.
I'm in the midst of reviewing the new Sony A7r II camera. One of the most pleasant surprises so far? Just how fast autofocus can be with Canon lenses and a Metabones adaptor. Watch this video, and see what an amazing improvement this is from anything that came before.
Sigma hasn't made headlines recently, but the company's new 24-35mm F2 lens will certainly get your attention. Why? According to the company, it's the first full-frame lens to offer "constant aperture of F2 throughout the zoom range".
Ever see those giant rectangular cameras on TV sets and wonder why they're so damn big? It's because they house giant-arse lenses that can zoom from here to the moon while maintaining large, bright apertures. One internet mastermind decided to pair his $US60,000 Fujinon XA55 lens with a Panasonic GH4, and it's great.
The easiest and arguably cheapest way to improve the zoom on your camera is to move yourself closer to the object you wish to embiggen. Alternatively, you could shell out for Canon's SX60, which features a 21-1365mm lens that offers 65x optical zoom. Yes, sixty-five times. How good is that exactly? Well, these videos should demonstrate the camera's abilities pretty well.
If you've come to rely on your smartphone as your primary camera, you've probably found yourself frustrated at its lack of zoom or even macro capabilities. Clip-on lenses can vastly improve its capabilities, and taking a cue from those sliding puzzle games that have you re-arranging tiles to form an image, the Puzlook iPhone case has five swappable lenses on the back that slide into position to improve your shots.