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11-06-2012, 12:16 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by JinDesu Quote
Sharpness is generally overrated for portraiture
Amen. When I started serious photography in the 1970's there was a general search for old lenses the same as I see now in other topic areas of this forum. Only what was desired was the old soft lenses for portrait work. Those re-sold lens often went for a premium price. The typical 50mm lens of the day (the same lenses that folks are often clamoring for today) was often considered too sharp for portraiture and I read countless articles and photography book chapters that talked about ways to artificially soften images.

It seems photographers are never happy with what they have!

11-08-2012, 09:05 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by melissa.1031 Quote
Hi Marc,
I saw your post before I sent my last reply. Can you expalin what the "crop factor" is?
Jim gave a technical explanation, and Google would surely supply with your hundreds upon hundreds more pages of information. But let me try to give a non-technical explanation that will hopefully be more immediately helpful.

A given lens can behave very differently from one camera to another, depending on the sensor size. A 40mm lens, for example, produces a slightly wide angle image on a traditional film camera, but a narrower view - like a telephoto lens - on an a traditional DSLR like yours. A 50mm lens produces a "normal" image - neither wide nor telephoto - on a film camera, but a definitely telephoto image on your camera.

"Crop factor" is a term used to describe how much the images changes between cameras. Specifically, the crop factor of 1.5 means a 50mm lens on your camera produces an image similar to what you'd get from a 75mm lens on a film camera.

So the question of what focal length lens you want depends on what camera you want to use it on. And as I said, 50mm is a decent portrait focal length on your camera, but not so good as a general purpose indoor lens because it is too long. Conversely, 50mm is a good general purpose indoor lens on film, but not so good as a portrait lens because it is too short.
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