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Weekly Video Tip: Understanding Types of Lenses for DSLR Video

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By Stephen Schweickart

If you’ve advanced your knowledge of video enough to shoot on something like a DSLR camera, check out these great tips on using various lenses.

If you’re really serious about maintaining complete control of what you’re shooting, then the three generic types of lenses that should be on your radar are fixed, zoom, and “close up” – or macro.

Fixed lenses, also known as prime lenses, come in a range of focal lengths from wide angle to telephoto. Their optics are simpler and let in much more light giving you more control over the depth of field.

Zoom lenses come in handy when you’re wanting to travel light, or if you’re heading out to shoot without a real plan. The only thing you’ll have complete control over is the distance in which you capture your subject.

“Close up,” or macro lenses, have reproduction ratios greater than 1:1. Macros let you get that extreme close up you’re after. Be careful with your depth of field when using these “larger than life” lenses because your range may literally come down to the millimeter.

Think you’d like to broaden your cinematic scope with these lens tips? Give us a thumbs-up, or follow us for more tips to bring your video-making skills up-to-date.

Stephen Schweickart is the co-founder of VScreen. For more information on this topic, visit VScreen’s blogsite at http://www.vscreen.com/blog/.

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