Cameras are used for many things. Some people use them to take pictures, some use them for video, and others use them for security. What does MM mean on camera lens? It’s a focal length that is defined in millimeters and it’s usually written like F/2.8 on the side of the lens. This number tells you how wide and deep into space the camera can see from one point to another. For example, a lower denominator means that a camera can see more of an object farther away, while a higher number will make objects close up appear bigger in the frame. (Find The Best Zoom Lens For Sony A7iii)
What does MM mean on camera lens? Find out below!
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What Does MM Mean On Camera Lens?
MM is an abbreviation for millimeter, which is a common way of measuring the length of a lens. A millimeter is equal to 1/1000th of a meter or one thousandth of a centimeter.
The focal length of a lens is determined by how long it is. A lens with a long focal length will have a narrow field of view, while a lens with a short focal length will have a wide field of view.
A lens with a longer focal length can take in more light than one with a shorter focal length. This means if you are shooting at night or somewhere dark, you should use the lens with the longer focal length to allow more light to reach the sensor.
MM Is Directly Related To Focal Length
Whoever invented camera lenses, was a genius. Now, whoever standardized the ‘name’ of a lens made it kinda difficult for the beginner to understand.
No worries, we’ve got you on this one.
You see, mm is the way we standardize a lens. The mm of a lens is its focal length. Whether it be a zoom lens or a prime lens, the mm of that lens is its focal length.
if I wanted a wider shot – What Camera Lens Would I Use?
Well, the focal length for a wider shot is pretty simple really.
- The lower the mm, the wider the shot will be.
- The opposite can be said for higher numbers.
- The higher the mm, the tighter/narrower/zoomed-in look you will have.
What is Focal Length
The focal length of a lens is the distance between the lens and the image sensor when an object is in focus, usually stated in millimeters (e.g., 28 mm, 50 mm or 100 mm). Zoom lenses have both minimum and maximum focal lengths indicated: for example 18-55mm.
Focal length is a basic description of how a camera lens works. It’s not an actual measurement of the lens, but instead a calculation from where light rays converge to create sharp images to the sensor or film at plane focal point. Focal lengths are determined when focused at infinity, which is also called focus points (FP).
Why is focal length important?
Focal length is important because it can affect the way a camera sees things. The focal length of a lens will tell you how wide and deep into space the camera can see from one point to another. This is written like F/2.8 on the side of the lens. For example, a lower denominator means that camera can see more of an object farther away, while a higher number will make objects close up appear bigger in the frame.
The best focal length is the one that has the ability to isolate your subject and keep distractions out. In general, long focal lengths are used for this reason – like 85mm or 135mm. This creates dramatic backgrounds which help capture textures and distant features of a person’s face or object you’re photographing.
Different Betweem: Zoom vs Prime Lens
The main difference between a prime lens and a zoom lens is of focal length. While prime lenses have a fixed focal length, zoom lenses, on the other hand, have a wider and variable focal length.
Zoom Lens Benefits
The advantage of a zoom lens is their versatility. They are ideal for photographing different types of subjects, such as landscapes and portraits, and you just want one lens for both situations. Using a zoom lens also reduces the number to times you need to change lenses, which saves time and limits the possibility of getting dust in your camera’s mirror box or on its sensor.
Prime Lens Benefits
The main advantages of prime lenses or fixed focal length lenses are their size and weight as well as their maximum aperture or f/stop. Prime lenses tend to be more compact and lightweight than zoom lenses.
Prime lenses are known for having a larger maximum aperture and this is an advantage when shooting in low light. This can be helpful if you want to take pictures without shake or blur as the exposure lengthens. Using prime lens with large apertures also means that you can get a shallow depth of field which is useful for portraiture where there might typically be either soft, blurred backgrounds (also called bokeh).
Focal Length Recommendations
This article should have at least a little bit of discussion about which focal length is best depending on what type of photo you’re taking.
Because a certain look will always come down to your lens focal length.
Now, bear in mind that these focal lengths are for a full frame camera. Your focal length may be different if you’re shooting on a smaller sensor (like a crop sensor).
24mm Is A Great Semi-Wide Focal Length
This sits right on the edge of a ‘normal lens’ and a wide-angle lens.
This is a great environmental focal length and should be used as such.
You should refrain from taking up-close photos of people’s faces because of distortion.
Great all-around environmental/travel focal length.
50mm Is Considered The Most Versatile Of All Focal Lengths
50mm may be one of the most common, widely used focal lengths on the planet.
You wanna know why? Because it works so well at so many things.
We take portraits, street photography, automotive shots – even landscapes.
Not only does the 50mm prime lens produce excellent images, it is also very cheap. ($130 for a Canon) The fact that all major manufacturers sell their own makes this purchase even better. I can tell you one thing: you would never go wrong with owning a 50mm lens!
85mm Is The Go-To For Portraits
The 85mm focal length is great for a lot of things because of the amount of compression.
As your focal length increases, compression starts to eliminate distortion. 85mm is the focal length that eliminates nearly all lens distortion on the human face.
Plus it’s the focal length that allows you to move around a little bit and get the environment along with them if you wanted.
135mm is the King of portrait focal lengths.
I have been shooting portraits with an 85mm lens for years like everybody else. It was not until around a year and a half ago that I purchased the 135mm f/1.8 and then never looked back on my choice of lenses since it eliminates all distortion in your pictures, which is something every photographer wants to avoid!
The maximum aperture is not nearly as low when you use a zoom lens, so it can be said that you are losing out on this attribute and the cost will also double. A 200mm prime lens (f/2) is another option which shoots great photos – but at $6000 dollars, it’s significantly more expensive than the 135mm f/2.8 version – which costs roughly $1400 to purchase.
Hey there, thanks for reading all of this! I know it was a long article, but we hope you found the answer to What does MM mean on camera lens? question. You’re amazing and it’s awesome that you want to learn about photography.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does 200mm lens mean?
A 200mm lens is a telephoto lens, used for objects at a distance. This type of optic will compress the image so that it looks like objects are closer together. It may also be good for bird or sports photography.
Which lens is better 50mm or 35mm?
You would see that the 50mm has a shallower depth of field and better bokeh. On the other hand, the 35mm will fit more into frame so it is more suitable for landscape and indoor photos.