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50mm Lens: The ONE LENS Every Photographer NEEDS!

8/28/2023 Matt 1 Comments


If you could own only one lens, what would it be? This question has echoed through the years of photography discussions. The resounding answer? A 50mm lens. But what makes this unassuming focal length so universally appealing?

If you could only own one lens, what would it be? For many photographers, the answer is a 50mm lens. Here are just a few reasons why:

  1. It's the closest focal length to human vision. This means that when you look through a 50mm lens, what you see in the frame is very similar to what you see with your own eyes. This makes it easy to compose shots and get natural-looking results.
  2. It's versatile. A 50mm lens can be used for a variety of photography genres, including portraits, street photography, and landscape photography. It's also a great choice for low-light photography, thanks to its wide aperture.
  3. It's affordable. There are many high-quality 50mm lenses available for a variety of budgets. This makes it a great option for beginner photographers who are looking for a versatile and affordable lens.
For crop sensor cameras, a little math adjusts the equation. With a 1.6x crop factor, a 50mm lens becomes an 80mm equivalent. However, to achieve a 50mm equivalent field of view, a 35mm lens is required. This flexibility lets you tailor your gear to your camera without losing the 50mm magic.

So, whether you're a seasoned pro or just starting, consider the 50mm (or equivalent) lens your gateway to exceptional photography.

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About Nathan Elson:

I'm a commercial photographer based out of Calgary, AB. My YouTube channel will be a place for my behind the scenes, Q&A, and whatever else happens to make it into video form that seems like people might be interested in viewing. Let's Get Connected: | LIGHTROOM & CAPTURE ONE PRESET PACKS: | STUDIO LIGHTING WORKSHOP 

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Rehn said...

The only reason everybody loves a 50/1.8 is because it was a kit lens for almost all of the 35mm SLRs. Everybody HAD one, so everybody USED one so it built a reputation that way. I would argue a 35, 28, or 85mm deserves that spot more than the 50mm.