11 common lens errors and how you can avoid them

    | Photography Tips | 05/06/2013 00:01am

    The step up from a compact camera to one that allows you to changes lenses can be quite daunting, but it’s also a move towards taking better images. Our head of testing, Angela Nicholson, has compiled a list of the most common lens errors photographers make and some advice about how to avoid them.

    11 common lens errors and how you can avoid them

    Common Lens Error No. 1: Blurred image

    If you mount a long focal length or telephoto lens on your camera and compose an image you’ll notice that it’s harder to keep the main subject at the same point in the frame than it is with a standard lens.

    This is because the longer lens effectively crops in around the subject and even very small movements of the camera become significant and can result in blurred images.

    If your camera or lens has the option, turning on the stabilisation system will help, but as a general rule the longer the focal length of the lens that you use, the faster the shutter speed needs to be to avoid camera-shake from spoiling your shots.

    Use the effective focal length of your lens as a rough guide to work out the safe hand-holdable shutter speed.

    Fixing Bad Pictures: Why are my photos blurry and out of focus?

    If your camera has an APS-C format sensor you need to multiply the actual focal length of the lens by 1.5x (or 1.6x for Canon SLRs) to find the effective focal length.

    Micro Four Thirds cameras from Olympus and Panasonic have a focal length multiplication factor of 2x.

    Once you’ve done the maths, set a shutter speed that is 1 second divided by the effective focal length.

    This means that if you mount a 50mm lens on a Nikon D5200, for example, you need to use a shutter speed of at least 1/75sec.

    Common Lens Error No. 1: Blurred image
    Common Lens Error No. 2: Too much depth of field
    Common Lens Error No. 3: Depth of field too shallow
    Common Lens Error No. 4: Distorted portraits
    Common Lens Error No. 5: Converging verticals
    Common Lens Error No. 6: Can’t focus close enough
    Common Lens Error No. 7: Exposure changes when zooming
    Common Lens Error No. 8: Flare
    Common Lens Error No. 9: Camera unbalanced with telephoto lens
    Common Lens Error No. 10: Vignetting
    Common Lens Error No. 11: Soft images


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    Posted on Wednesday, June 5th, 2013 at 12:01 am under Photography Tips.

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