My Camera Bag: 50mm lens

in Photography Lovers2 months ago

The 50mm prime lens. Common and widespread, 50mm prime lenses are ubiquitious is nearly every photographer's camera bag. Not one to always shy too far away from convention, I happen to have two 50mm lenses in my kit.

(A picture of a 50mm lens, shot with a 50mm lens)

There have been a number of film sizes throughout the history of photography; 35mm and 60mm were the most popular in their respective times. For the most part, however, "35mm" became the standard and most widely used. During the heydey of 35mm film photography, it was the 50mm lens that was deemed to most precisely "fill" the entire 35mm negative. Ipso facto, the 50mm lens became synonymous with "human eye field of view"

(Two Boys Playing, shot through a 50mm lens)

Prime lenses have positives and negatives; prime lenses are typically less expensive than non-prime lenses because they have fewer moving parts. The 50mm prime, in particular, is common enough to be affordable for about anyone with an SLR or dSLR. The major disadvantage, however, is that it isn't variable, and if you want to get closer to your subject, you need to physically get closer.

Where one sees a disadvantage, however, another sees a benefit: prime lenses force the photographer to think more creatively and to more carefully frame the shot.

Now here comes the rub. All of my dSLR cameras have been "consumer grade" Sony's with APS-C sensors. These sensors are actually the size of about a 25mm negative, not a 35mm negative. What this means is that the focal length of a lens is actually longer on an APS-C sensor than it's 35mm, or "full frame," equivalent: a 50mm lens on a film camera is roughly equivalent to a 75mm lens on any of my cameras.

Why, you might ask? Because of technical details. Please just accept it. It's true. Google it. Google agrees with me.

To get a 50mm lens equivalent on an APS-C camera, one must use a lens that is about 35mm in focal length. These two pictures were shot at a 35mm focal length, making them out to be roughly 50mm after conversion.

So why do I continue to have, and use, 50mm prime lenses, if they don't actually come out to 50mm? Because I have them (I have two), because they're good lenses, they're lightweight, and they take really good pictures. They're really good for portraits, both indoors and out.

My Camera Bag:


(c) All images and photographs, unless otherwise specified, are created and owned by me.
(c) Victor Wiebe


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The world of photography is definitely fascinating. I do some amateur shots that make me very happy every afternoon but reading this great class that you share today, I confirm that I still have a lot to learn. However, it makes me happy to photograph my Sunsets from my terrace. I give you a picture and a coffee from here. Thank you for sharing your knowledge, dear Victor. A big hug from here. Your photos are beautiful! @wwwiebe 🤗😙💖

Thank you @marybellrg! I really enjoy photography, and rather wish I had time for more of it. Just too many things to do!

50mm on a crop sensor is a bit of a mix bag. it could work as a portrait lens, probably best for portraits in tight spaces.

on the plus plus side, they are usually cheap and do a good job for the price.

That's exactly it; they're inexpensive and perform adequately regardless of the type of sensor. They definitely make great portrait lenses, in or outdoors.

I admit that I didn't care for the 50mm when I first bought it. I was still in love with the 18-55 kit lens. It has taken some of my best pictures. Garden shots, in particular.

However, I did discover that the 50mm, being a prime lens is a worthy opponent and I now work around my issues of it not being my favorite because it works awesomely!

Thanks for reminding me to keep playing with the different lense, even if it is not your favorite. :))

I've got more lenses to come! I'm surprised at how many I have for how few pictures I take!

Years ago I bought the nifty 50 (f1.8 version) for my Canon EOS 60D, although sharp, I hardly ever used it, I sold it, but I now own the 40mm f/2.8 pancake lens, I love this lens, as it also makes for a great macro lens with extention tubes or lens reversal, definitely worth checking it out. I use this on my Sony A7iii now (with the sigma MC11 adaptor).

I'll need to check that one out! I've got a manual 28mm that I like to use with macro tubes, but my macro photography is awful. That's something I really do need to practice more on.

Always learning more, my husband has had both film and digital cameras with assortment of lenses. Perhaps one day to find a camera clinic have them properly repaired and try my hand at them around the garden.

Not having time on my hands looking after young boys I only took to photography ten years ago when they were grown up, opted for a pocket camera with zoom capabilities for ease of use.

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The best camera is the one you have that suits your needs. I'll admit I often just opt for using my phone, too, and it generally works pretty well.

One does get used to working with certain camera equipment, last thing I think of is phone camera only use it when really do not have mine in my pocket.

i use the 50mm rokkor my self or my helios -44 58mm both van make nice macro shots with the use of an extention ring .

My other prime lenses are manual lenses, and they work really nicely on the macro tubes I have. I'm going to get to post them all eventually!

maybe i should post some too again just can't motivate myself to do it ;)