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Lesson 5 from: Canon SL-1 Fast Start

John Greengo

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Lesson Info

5. Lenses

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Lesson Info


Let's talk about canon lenses cannon has two different lineups of lenses you can use both on this camera you can use the e f lenses which have the red dot on them or you can use the f s lenses, which you will see clearly labeled as e f s and they have a white square on them so let me explain visually how these two lenses air different the e f lenses stands for elektronik focus was designed for the full frame thirty five millimeter sensors and what happens when light goes through these lenses is it produces a very large image circle for the rectangle of the sensor. Now the e f s lends the esses smaller or short back focus produces a smaller image circle for these smaller image sensor that is in this camera itself. So it is, he might say, matched perfectly for this camera. Now let's just say you take the lens from this camera and f s and you move it over onto a full frame camera. Here is the problem is you get something called vignette or a darkening of the corners it's not producing a p...

roper size image and this is generally unacceptable to photographers and with canon lenses you can't even mt the f s lenses on the full frame cameras so you won't really have a chance to make this mistake because they don't even work on that camera now, if you were to buy an e f lens which is perfectly possible with this camera, it produces a very large image circle and you will be using just simply the information that is in the middle of that lens and that is perfectly fine you're just not really getting the benefit of everything else and you may look for nfs lenses because you want you think that they're perfectly matched for your camera, but the fact of the matter is is that there's a number of lenses typically telephoto lenses they onley make an e f and it's the only option. So if you want a four hundred millimeter lens for this camera, the on ly options are e f and there's nothing wrong with it. You're actually just getting a little bit more telephoto capability than the full frame use yourself. Feel free to use either of those options on this camera. Now cannon has a lot of different letters and numbers nomenclature describing what the lenses so first off let me just go through a short little list here e f stands for elektronik focus the luxury lenses is there top of the line and siri's and they will all have red stripes around the front so they stand out like a sore thumb. Many of the lenses r I s lenses, which means they have a stabilizer built into the lands which compensates for your hand movement and could be very handy under low light conditions. A lot of their auto focus lenses are now in the second generation phase, which means it's the second version of that lands and it's just needs toe be differentiated from the original version so that we know which one we're buying. The u s m motor is on many of the lenses it's, an ultrasonic motor that, in real simple terms is very fast and very quiet. A few of the lenses now have s t e m lenses, and these have stepper motors, which tend to be a little bit more smooth, focusing for video for fast still photography you can use either one. The ultrasonic motor is much more common that's kind of the standard motor and designation that you'll see on most all their lenses. And then the s stands for short back focus. And just be aware that these lenses will not work on a camera like the cannon six d or the five d mark three or any of the full frame cameras, so be it. Just be aware that they won't even mount on there. There's no damage that you can do because they just won't physically fit on there. Now one of the more popular kit lenses, the lens that comes in the kid with the camera would be the eighteen to fifty five or in the case I'm showing here the eighteen to one thirty five and on the lands you'll see a little mountain index so that you know how to mounted up onto the camera properly, there will be a switch for turning the stabilization on and off if you are handheld, I would leave it on all the time if you're going to be working on a tripod, you want to turn it off, it's because there's a little bit of a feedback problem that happens when the cameras on a tripod it's not moving in the lens is trying to see movement, and it sees the movement of itself moving around and so turn it off on a tripod and for the rest of hand held photography, I would generally leave it on it's not completely necessary if you're shooting really fast shutter speeds, but it doesn't drain the battery that much and it doesn't really harm anything, and I think it actually makes it easier to compose in the camera so I I would leave it turned on there will be a switch for focusing between auto focus and manual focus this is on your lands it's not controlled on your camera and so if your camera is not auto, focusing this is the first thing to check is where is the auto focus, which is? Is it in the mode or in the imf mode? We have our zoom ring for zoom lenses so you can change your angle of you. If you do have your camera in the manual focus mode, you would be focusing on the lands with the focusing ring. This varies in different locations on different lenses on the eighteen to one thirty five it's, a nice little rubberized ring out near the front of the plans filter threads on this eighteen to one thirty five r sixty seven in diameter, so if you want a uv protection filter or polarizer, you want to sixty seven millimeter polarizer. Different lenses have different size filters and that's, one of the considerations it's not the most important, but it's a consideration in choosing your lens lineup because it's very convenient to have two or three lenses that all share the same size filters, but a lot of times they're just plain old different sizes down around the outside around that lends, you'll see there's kind of some notches, and this is so that you can mount hood, a bayonet style good that you could just twist on with a quarter turn for the eighteen to thirty five there's, a very specific lens hood it's, the w seventy three b but that hood is on ly good for this one lands every lands has a matched unique lens hood and ideally I like shooting with lens hoods because I get better contrast unless flare in the images but sometimes you get a turn it around you gotta put it on the camera sometimes they're supplied with lenses and in many cases for canon cameras or canon lenses they're not supplied and it's an additional twenty bucks in this case or they might run fifty dollars if it's a bigger land and so it's a good device to have on their also access a nice little kind of bumper in front of the glass elements of the lens itself for the more basic kit the eighteen to fifty five the new standard kit lands is an s t e m lens which is good for video of course, if you buy the more expensive kit you can get the eighteen to one thirty five the eighteen to one thirty five is enough zoom range that most people for general purpose needs may not need another lens at all if you have just the eighteen to fifty five it's a nice starter lands but my guess is that you're going to want to get another mohr telephoto lens the first go to lands if that basic zoom is good for you is the fifty five to two fifty lands and so this is just kind of the matched telephoto version of the kit lands if you have the eighteen to one thirty five it wouldn't be a terrible choice either. There's a bit more overlap if you want something that's a little bit higher end and a little bit more range the seventy two, three hundred is made of better construction it's got better glass and it zooms out a little bit further to three hundred millimeters. No well, I could go all day on lenses I'm going to try to keep it fairly short and just give you a couple more lenses that I think are good byes with this camera. The one that I have on the camera right now is the little pancake lands and this is just a small, simple little ends it's a forty millimeter two point eight land so it's two point eight and aperture, which means it's pretty good under low light conditions. It's obviously nice and small so if you want just a super small package it gives you a very short telephoto that would be good for it. Some people call it an awkward focal length and I don't believe there is anything is an awkward focal length I think it's just a different angle of view it's a short telephoto lens and it would be good for portrait ce and general people photography it does put you in just a little bit more distance away than kind of a standard leads so I think it's a nice of the lens and that's actually why I bought that little lens and it works with full frame as well as the crop train cameras definitely the best buy that you're going to find is the fifty millimeter one point eight lance you're going to find this for sale for just over one hundred bucks with a one point eight aperture this is going to be the fastest lends you can buy anywhere near this price range this makes for a really nice portrait lens and so if you want to shoot pictures of your kids or family members and you have the standard kit lens the standard kit lands when you zoom it out to fifty or fifty five which is where you would want to have it for doing portrait photography the maximum aperture is five point six and so this one not only his f four which is a stop faster or to eight that's two stops or two that's three stops so it's about three and a half stops faster so it's letting into for eight male it's rounder up there and call it ten times as much light and so for a little over a hundred bucks you can allow ten times as much light as the kit lance this is going to be great for working under low light conditions like a dark living room or out on the ball field late at night it's also going to be good for shooting shallow depth of field and so the thing to know about this lens is that it's all very good but it is a really cheap lands and it it is cheap it's plasticky it feels almost like a toy if you use it real real roughly it's not like the last you more than maybe a year or two, but if you take care of it it should last you many, many years and it's a great way to kind of play around with shallow depth of field and a fast lands and then finally, if you're interested in macro photography, all lenses have a minimum distance that they can focus too, and the macro lens is focused much, much closer and they're also optically designed to be very, very sharp when you focus up really close and so that would be the the main macro lens I would look at there are many other choices there's many other lenses we don't have time for it, but those were some of my favorite lenses for this camera, so maybe we have a few questions you know we do all right good question that coming up here now from janice takes pics asking if if I think I might move to a more professional camera sunday seems like I should on ly by e f lenses is there any downsized to using an ef lens on an eight f s body with the smaller sensor for using the full frame lenses on this camera optically there's no problems with it there's nothing wrong with it however the problem comes financially ok so here's the problem is that the camera comes with an eighteen to fifty five and that is an f s lands and that lens on its own cells for let's say two hundred bucks pretty close to the price if you said well I want to get an e f lens that does the same thing firstly they don't make one that does that the closest one that they do sells for about six hundred dollars and so it's going to cost you way too much money when you're looking at white angle lenses and so what I would do if I was planning on upgrading if I thought this is an intermediary step for me I'm going to be getting better is I would invest most of my money in e f lenses but there are some choices I would just keep us f s and the standard kit lends well when you sell your camera and upgrade you plan to sell that standard kit lands with it there is millions of these cameras out there and you can resell those f s lenses on ebay or craigslist lots of people use canons and so it's very easy to dump those lenses when you don't need him and so don't worry too much that you won't be able to use that lens on the upgrade because some options air just not really financially viable especially in the wide angle and normal settings great point all right next question up is from austin family photos who asked I take pictures of kids soccer games and always have a problem with how fast my camera focuses does the sa one focus quickly and does that change with different lenses focusing does change with different lenses and the camera is cannons entry level camera it's not their top of the line sports camera and there are different levels of focusing as you go up and so if you take this camera out with a reasonably good lands and you shoot sports which is hit or miss at the very best you take cannons top of line camera and top of the line lenses there's still a lot of technique involved in a lot of other variables that happen and so even the professional photographers are not getting one hundred percent in focus pictures and so was you start cutting back and simplifying the system's you're going to get a lower and lower percentage I would think with a reasonably good lands if you're going to shoot say something like football or soccer where people are running around on a field if you could hit fifty percent focusing your doing very good and so I would recommend looking at some of the lenses that lead in mohr like typically, the more light the lens lets in the faster it's going to focus, and so if you can get a lens that's f four that's going to be better than five point six and that extra stop a light is going to cost you a lot of money, so a lot of people are renting lenses for special events so that it will focus faster, you know, you put up five thousand dollars lens on this camera is going to do a pretty amazing job, and you can rent that for, you know, maybe fifty bucks for a day. Not everyone wants to spend five thousand dollars and lands, but fifty bucks that might be doable for a big head that's cool. I also like the fact that you just, like, shared with us, the kind of the ratio of like you, you're not going to get one hundred percent, right? Even the pro sports photographers aren't getting one hundred percent in focus, and because I know when I was first starting out like you look at the back, your camera, like nothing is in focus, nothing's perfect, and, you know, so just keep shooting and and get home and focus eventually, right? And hopefully you'll get the most important moments, but it's. The sports is as a very challenging situation. And the camera just doesn't have the auto focusing horse power and the number of focusing points. There's cameras higher up in the lineup that have more focusing points that have more cross systems that are better at focusing. And so it's. A basic camera you're going to get some basic pictures is if you can shoot pictures. When they're not moving around at top speed, you'll get a higher percentage.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Canon SL1 Outline.pdf

Ratings and Reviews


It's a great class for people that have a long attention span, tons of time and understand greek. I wish I'd bought a plain point and shoot camera as I apparently don't understand camera speak. I'm a get right down to it kind of person. It is a great class, it's just not for me because I don't understand any of it.

Drew Kovach

John is a great teacher and I learned so much more by taking the course as opposed to reading parts and pieces of the owner's manual. Thanks for teaching me about my camera.

Julia Ensign

Learned so much from this class and the photography beginners kit, now on to fundamentals! Can't wait!

Student Work