artifacts – is it normal to get significant lens flare with a 50mm f/1.8 prime lens?

What you are seeing in the photo is a specific type of lens flare known as ghosting. It is an inverted and reversed reflection of the brightest highlights of the scene. If you were to draw an x and y axis intersecting in the center of the photo, then the bright light on top of the building just left of the vertical axis is reflected the same distance below the horizontal center line and the same distance to the right (in the ball court). The greenish tint in the reflection is caused by the color of the bright light. The light itself looks white because all three color channels are fully saturated at the exposure level used to take the picture. The color of lens coatings designed to minimize reflections is also influencing the color of the reflection. The other bright lights in the scene are also being reflected the same way. Lights in the upper right will show up in the lower left and so on. The five-sided shape of the bokeh around the reflections are due to the number of aperture blades in your lens.

enter image description here

The brightest parts of the scene are most likely bouncing off the IR filter on the front of your sensor and then reflecting back off the back of elements in the lens. If you can also see the reflections through the viewfinder, then the first reflection is occurring in the lens. The EF 50mm f/1.8 II was designed in the film era. Film is less reflective than modern sensor assemblies and so reflections from the camera were less of a concern. Newer lenses have mult-coated optics on both the front and rear surfaces of most or all elements to help combat this.

My Rebel XTi with the EF 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 II kit lens tended to do this in similar conditions as well.

Parade pic

Some things you can do to reduce such ghosting include:

  • Remove any filters screwed onto the front of your lens. The flat rear surface of the filter is perfect for creating reflections of light bouncing off elements in the lens, or even from the sensor stack itself.
  • Use a lens with better anti-reflective coatings or a camera with a less reflective sensor/filter stack.
  • Try to compose shots so that the brightest points in your scene have bright visual elements at the corresponding point in the cross quadrant to make the reflection less obvious.
  • Make a mask for the front of your lens that blocks half the field of view. Then combine two exposures, one with the mask on the left, the other with the mask on the right (or you might do the same thing with a strong graduated Neutral Density filter). The reflections would still show on the “dark side”, but you would mask them out in post processing when combining the two images.

lens – Misfunction of Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 on manual focus?

In order to fire the shutter when any of the pre-STM variants of the EF 50mm f/1.8 is out of focus, the switch on the lens must be set to M (manual) rather than AF (auto focus). Attempting to manually focus those lenses with AF engaged can damage the focusing motor and mechanism. If the motor is still trying to engage when the lens is set to M it needs to be serviced.

There are two variants of the Canon 18-135 lens. The older EF 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS behaves the same as the 50mm f/1.8 series with regard to focus. You should not attempt to manually focus the lens when the switch is set to AF. For the newer EF 18-135mm f/2.5-5.6 IS STM, Full Time Manual focusing (manual focusing when the switch is set to AF) is available, but only after AF completes in One Shot mode with the shutter release remaining half-pressed. I was under the impression this only worked with the newer T4i and newer bodies, but based on your experience described in your question the T3i is compatible with this feature as well.

This is a very late edit, but a recent experience I had might suggest a possibility for anyone else with this problem:

If the lens has been opened up (to be internally cleaned, for instance) it’s extremely easy to misalign the external AF/MF switch with the actual switch underneath it on the lens’ PC board when putting it back together. If this occurs, the outer switch can break the plastic tab off the actual switch and then moving the external AF/MF switch does nothing. Whichever position the actual switch is in (it can be moved with a narrow probe when the lens is disassembled) is what the lens is set to regardless of the position of the external switch.

I’ve experienced this with the EF 85mm f/1.8, but a number of Canon’s other lower priced non-L primes are also made in the same way. My solution is to leave the internal switch set to ‘AF’. Since I usually have back-button AF set up and half-pressing the shutter button only activates metering without activating AF, I need to only release the ‘AF-ON’ button to be able to manually focus the EF 85mm f/1.8 with ring-type USM.

Unfortunately, the EF 50mm f/1.8 does not have ring-type USM and the manual focus ring should not be moved when the switch is set to ‘AF’. I don’t know if the external/internal switches are connected the same way with the EF 50mm f/1.8, but the EF 50mm f/1.4 is constructed the same way the EF 85mm f/1.8 is (as well as the EF 100mm f/2, among others).

Are there any F/1.8 wide angle primes under 20mm for Nikon F?

Nikon has a 20mm F/1.8 and there is a Sigma 14mm F/1.8 lens. I wonder if there are any fullframe Nikon F mount lenses with an aperture of F/1.8 and a focal length in between 15-19mm.

Is a 50mm f/1.8 or 50mm f/1.4 a good lens for portraits in low light?

I personally have the 1.8 and my friend the 1.4. Obviously the 1.4 is much better build quality and fairly better optically, but the 1.8 is a bargain and still a good lens as long as you don’t plan on throwing it around. Also more easily replaced if it breaks. Both give pleasing pictures and both will be better in low light than your current lens…
but..

..in your example you give these lenses would not improve the picture in the way you want. The christmas tree would still be the source of light and the people would still be underexposed in front of it. The lenses would both make the ability for faster shutter speeds or lower ISO’s, but the lighting ratio in your picture would still be the same.

To get the picture you are after you would still need some illumination on your subjects to expose them better with the tree. As it is dark a reflector wouldn’t be much use, so it’s more likely you will need to use some flash, but don’t put it on auto. Use your camera (I’d prefer in manual) to expose for the tree, and then use the flash as fill light, probably dialling in some flash exposure compensation of -1 or -2 stops so that the light is mostly only lighting their faces and not affecting the already lit background so much.

It’ll likely take some tinkering to get the right ratio of lighting that you want, but using a faster lens is only going to mean more bokeh (which will be nice for the tree potentially) and the ability to shoot faster, it won’t magically bring your subjects out of the low light whilst leaving the background as it was.

Better for portrait photography: Canon EF 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM vs CANON EF50mm F1.8 STM?

I have a Canon EF 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens came with my Canon EOS 6D Mark II.
CANON EF50mm F1.8 STM would be better for portrait pictures than Canon EF 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM ?
I am new to photography and looking for better recommendation(budget) portrait lens.
Thank you.

aperture – What is the bokeh difference between 1/2.3″ f/0.95 cell phone and 1″ f/1.8 compact camera?

The diameter of the “blur disk” in the focus plane is the same as that of the “entrance pupil”, the visible (rather than actual) aperture opening (f/a where f is the actual focal length and a the aperture number). How big is the visible aperture opening on a smartphone in relation to facial features? This should give you a clue about the “creamy bokeh” of your phone camera being an artificial thing. It does depth estimation, potentially by using a second camera, and then computationally (rather than optically) blurs the results.

Significant amounts of bokeh (if we are not talking insect photography) usually require a comparatively large “f” and smartphones don’t have a lot of place for that. And while periscoping arrangements are now coming up, you still need that large visible entrance pupil: raising f does not buy you a lot when you have to raise a as well.

So if you have smaller sensor cameras show good bokeh at non-minuscule objects, it usually is because they are working in the tele range. 1″ cameras give good background separation for birds, APS-C works for separating portraits or cats, but for a bridal pair you want a full-frame.

So it is rather likely that your expectations of bokeh that a phone camera tricks into being by mostly computational means will not be well-matched by actually pretty good cameras doing the same feat only optically.

So I would strongly recommend to look at example images of the kind of subject you are thinking about and probably rent some cameras over weekends to get a good feel for what you would be satisfied with.

The good news for optically achieved results, of course, is that they hold up well to scrutiny when zooming in. There are also some subtle differences because the optical version “looks around” objects.

Here is one example for background bokeh (smallish subjects, so an APS-C camera can work to some degree):Fork before whisk

You can see specular highlight circles on the whisk even when the center of the circle around which the highlight is placed clearly is obscured by the fork.

Focusing on the whisk gives foreground blur, another thing you cannot do computationally from a single image: you can see the complete whisk through the fork’s tines’ upper parts.
whisk behind fork

Now of course the question is how much of the value of bokeh lies in its aesthetic qualities and how much in its authentic qualities. This may very well make a difference in whether achieving your goals in a straightforward optical manner (that is less flexible in just how much you can mess with the results at least regarding the initial impression) will be worth the effort for you.

lens – Sigma 20mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art vs. Voigtlander 21mm f/1.8 Ultron – which one is better for travel?

If you’re interested in a travel lens, I’d definitely take the Sigma F1.4 because it’s an autofocus lens, which is a lot more convenient when taking pictures on the go. In addition it’s 2/3 of a stop faster than the Voigtlander. It is indeed quite heavy at 950g, but assuming that would be your one lens it shouldn’t be too noticeable.

If you provide us with the type of camera you’re using we could provide some alternative suggestions for lenses you can take.

aperture – 1/2.3″ f/0.95 or 1″ f/1.8

You appear to be seeking to maximize the amount of background blur. My personal experience with sensors smaller than APS-C has been disappointing. The difference among most compact camera sensor sizes usually has a greater effect on camera marketing than photographic results. However, there are compact(ish) cameras with APS-C and full-frame sensors that you could consider.

Factors that affect background blur are:

  • Distance to subject (closer)
  • Distance to background (farther)
  • Focal length (longer)
  • Aperture (larger opening; smaller F-number).

Sensor size in and of itself is not a factor. However, it influences focal length choice and working distances. Smaller sensors force the photographer to use shorter focal lengths at longer subject distances, which reduce background blur.

To compare the FOV and background blur of lens for different sensor sizes, convert values to “full-frame equivalents” by multiplying both the focal length and aperture by the crop factor. (This is equivalent to multiplying by crop-factor/crop-factor = 1.) For example, a 35/1.4 lens used on an APS-C camera will look like it was taken with a 52.5/2.1 lens on a full frame camera (35*1.5 / 1.4*1.5).

(Note: Exposure settings are still calculated with the non-adjusted aperture.)

The crop factor of your phone is about 5.64. That means photos taken at F0.95 will look like they were taken at F5.36 on a full-frame camera.

The crop factor of the Sony RX100 is 2.7. A photo taken at F1.8 will look like it was taken at F4.86 on a full-frame camera. So, assuming “equivalent” focal lengths, the Sony camera would have slightly more background blur.

D3500 withAF Nikkor 50 mm F/1.8 D incompatible lens

can soneone please give me an idiots guide to how to load this lens and get ot working on my D3500.

Ive set the apature to 22 and locked it but when I try to take a picture its just black.

I cant change the apature or shutter or anything and I just get F– in the appature section and “incompatible lens flashing up

Does HOYA PRO ND500 cause vignette on Sony FE 20mm f/1.8 G?

I’m going to buy HOYA PRO ND500 for making videos, but I’m new to wide angle lens and not sure if this filter will cause vignette on Sony FE 20mm f/1.8 G using on Sony a7 III. Thanks for any feedback.