As we all know, photo gear is pretty expensive. And if you suffer from the so-called Gear Acquisition Syndrome, you’ve probably spent tons of money on gear so far. But, there are some clever ways to buy the gear you want but at significantly lower prices. In this video, Miguel Quiles gives you five clever tricks that will help you save thousands of dollars both on new and used gear.
Photographer Mathieu Stern is passionate about finding and even making unusual lenses. This time, he hit a flea market and found a $6 treasure: Rollei 90mm f/2.4 MC. It’s a slide projector lens, but Mathieu adapted it to his Sony mirrorless camera and found out that it’s also great for portraits.
Photography is one of few industries where perception of skill feels quite so inextricably linked with equipment. For a lot of people, the start of their interest in photography is tied directly to the gear they buy: working out just enough about how aperture works to want to invest in a fast 50, getting enough of a handle of artificial light to crave a speed light or two, the eventual step into full-frame. But eventually there comes a point where the next step in your photography isn’t in your next lens, flash or camera body.
Lensbaby has just announced Sol 45, a budget-friendly tilt-shift lens. The Lensbaby Sol 45 is a 45mm f/3.5 lens, designed for both DSLR and mirrorless cameras. The company describes it as its “most playful and accessible lens yet,” so let’s see what you get with this $200 creative lens.
A 50mm lens is probably the first lens most of us bought after we got the camera. They are generally affordable, especially if you go for a f/1.8. But if you’re on a really tight budget, or just want to satisfy your gear acquisition syndrome without guilt: Kai Wong has a video for you.
In this video, he suggests five great 50mm lenses that cost well under $100. So if you’re looking for your first or for another 50mm lens, check out Kai’s suggestions.
Why only have round bokeh, when you can get it all sorts of shapes? You can achieve shaped bokeh by cutting a shape in black paper and placing it on the lens. Or if you’re too lazy or not really precise, you can even buy premade shapes. But what if I told you there’s a way to achieve square bokeh with nothing but a lens? Mathieu Stern presents you with a cheap lens that has a square aperture, so it creates super-interesting square bokeh.
If you enjoy experimenting with bokeh shapes, I’ve found a perfect tutorial for you. Mathieu Stern is known for his solutions which are so simple that they are ingenious. In under a minute, he’ll teach you how to create spectacular “bokeh explosion” with a simple modification of the lens.
The Helios 44-2 is one of my favourite old lenses. This, along with the Jupiter-9 are my two most used manual focus lenses for stills and video. The Helios 44 line started in 1958. Its initial design is a copy of the Carl Zeiss Biotar 58mm f/2, and was produced by KMZ for the M42 mount. Since that first version, it’s been through several iterations as technology has advanced.
In this video from Manny Ortiz, we see the Helios 44-2 58mm f/2 lens in action on a Sony A7RII. When you see the looks that can be achieved by this lens it’s easy to see why this quickly becomes a favourite of all who own one. The fact that they can be picked up for as low as $10 just makes it one that should be in everybody’s bag.