DPP Home Gear Lenses Time For An Upgrade

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Time For An Upgrade

With so many recent advancements in optics technology, is now the time to revamp your collection of lenses?

This Article Features Photo Zoom

lens upgrade
Superwide And Cost-Efficient
Tokina’s AT-X PRO DX II AF 12-24mm ƒ/4 is an inexpensive, yet high-performance superwide zoom designed specifically for APS-C-format D-SLRs. It f
eatures an improved multicoating to minimize
reflections from D-SLR sensor assemblies.
Technology moves ever onward, especially in the realm of digital imaging. Cameras get better and better, computers get more powerful and, happily, prices for things like memory keep coming down. Even with 35mm-format D-SLRs, the value for your dollar keeps improving. You now can choose among three full-frame models for well under $3,000, including one with 24 megapixels (Sony DSLR-A900), one with 21 megapixels and HD video capability (Canon EOS 5D Mark II) and one with astounding high-ISO performance (Nikon D700).

Along with image quality, autofocusing performance and operating speeds also increase with each new generation. If you want to remain competitive, you probably need to upgrade your digital SLR fairly regularly, and with ever-increasing pixel counts and high-bit RAW capability, your memory cards, as well.

lens upgrade
Top Optics For 4/3rds System
All Four Thirds System lenses were “designed for digital.” Olympus’ Zuiko Digital ED 14-35mm ƒ/2.0 SWD is a Super High Grade pro lens featuring an ƒ/2.0 aperture at all focal lengths, an SWD focusing motor, dust- and splashproofing, and optics incorporating two ED elements, an aspherical ED element and an aspherical element to control aberrations and distortion.
 lens upgradeTilt-Shift (Perspective Control)
Canon’s new TS-E 17mm ƒ/4L is a pro-series tilt-shift lens that features +/-6.5 degrees of tilt and 12mm of shift, plus a new TS rotation mechanism that lets you apply the tilt and shift at any angle. The lens was designed with digital imaging in mind, with improved coatings, four UD elements and an aspherical element. 

The question of when to upgrade your lenses is a different call. While you might have a collection of top pro lenses that have served you well for years, lens technology has been moving forward, too. But unlike camera and memory prices, lens prices have been going up. Are the newer “designed-for-digital” lenses better for D-SLR use? Will it show in your photographs?

Digital SLRs have some different lens requirements than 35mm-film SLRs for a number of reasons (to be considered shortly). Of course, some requirements are the same for both media, including high resolution, minimal aberrations and distortion, and good contrast and color reproduction. But a lens that performs wonderfully on a 35mm-film SLR might not do so well on a newer high-res D-SLR.


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