Snapsort provides the approximate number of lenses available for each brand of SLR. This includes lenses made by third parties, for example Sigma makes lenses that are compatible with Nikon DSLRs. This can be an important factor when buying a DSLR. People often own SLRs for many years, and as they improve their photography skills and knowledge they may find themselves limited by the kit lens, and start buying additional lenses. Snapsort does not include lenses that you can use with an adaptor in its counts, so often you can make use of more lenses than stated if you buy an extra adaptor.

Specialized Lenses

Here are a few types of specialized lenses you can buy for DSLRs.

Wide-angle

Wide-angle lenses, e.g. 24mm or lower, add an interesting perspective and let you capture huge scenes and/or great shots in tight spaces.

Wide-angle Perspective
A wide-angle photograph taken with a Nikon 700 This photograph demonstrates the effect of a very wide-angle lens (14mm), while capturing a huge amount of the scene it also distorts, more so at the edges, taken with a Nikon D700 DSLR. Photography by realSMILEY via Flickr. f/5.6, 1/50s, ISO 200, 14mm.

Telephoto

Telephoto lenses, e.g. 85mm or longer, let you get close-up shots of subjects far away from you, and are create flattering portraits of people.

Telephoto Closeup
A close-up image of a tiger taken with a Canon 5D Mark II Using a telephoto lens can get your close to the action without putting yourself at risk, this shot was taken (in a zoo!) at 500mm with a Canon 5D Mark II DSLR. Photography by Todd Ryburn via Flickr. f/4, 1/400s, ISO 1600, 500mm.

Wide aperture

Wide-aperture lenses, e.g. f/2.8 or wider, capture a lot of light letting you get natural light shots you couldn't otherwise get, and have a narrow depth of field to blur the background (bokeh).

Shallow Depth of Field (Bokeh)
A shallow depth of field photograph taken with a Nikon 40 Here you can see only some of the leaves are in focus due to the narrow depth of field achieved with a f/1.2 lens using a Nikon D40 DSLR. Photography by jorritf via Flickr. f/1.2, 1/640s, ISO 200, 50mm.

Macro

Macro lenses enable you to focus very very close to a subject, great for photographing details such as leaves on flowers or small insects

Macro Details
A wide-angle photograph taken with a Canon EOS 350D Here we small details made large using a macro lens which can focus very close to the ants, taken with a Canon EOS 350D DSLR. Photography by linh.ngan via Flickr. f/4, 1/800s, ISO 100, 40mm.

Discussion

Showing 12 comments

Avatar for Shlomo Levi Shlomo Levi (10:17 PM, November 17, 2014)
when i click on "lens

availability" i supouse to see all lenses for those model . list at least, and no childish explanation
 
Avatar for TEO TEO (11:14 AM, July 27, 2014)
I would like to know if by buying the Samsung NX2000 mirrorless camera I can use the lenses from my old camera Canon A-1 35mm.
I have 4 of them and I would like to use the also with a mirrorless camera.
 
cltien (7:52 PM, October 04, 2013)
Indeed, I think D800 or other Nikon FX DSLRs should have the same score as other DX DSLRs in this scoring item.
 
Bronek, (0:35 PM, September 27, 2013)
I wander if there compatibility in lenses between sony slr 58 and sony slr 77?
can somrbody advise me on it, thanx
 
Ronald (9:48 AM, June 18, 2013)
You need IS with a 50mm? Do you suffer from Parkinsons?
 
Tom (8:25 PM, April 19, 2013)
Will the newer lenses with the built in focus motors work with the 7100 which already has a focus motor?
 
Avatar for sdialect sdialect (8:45 PM, December 24, 2012)
I must echo this same sentiment in regards to lens count, I was aware of the IS vs non IS lens concept but, must also add often there is a lens with all the same specs on the glass but just a new motor technology. Quiet simply this metric is very misleading, look at 5 different 75-300mm in the Canon line up all at f/4-5.6 major difference is motor technology and IS... "big whup". Now consider most of the lens ranges can be almost cut in half when comparing a non-stabilized body to one with built-in and the playing field will take a seriously different tilt. So if you want to provide some sort of summary, this metric needs an immediate revamp, in it's current state it's bogus.
 
David Worthington (2:23 AM, June 18, 2012)
I was noticing your lens compatibility rating on the new Nikon D800 and noticed you didn't include DX lenses. Because on prior FX cameras using these lenses would drop the effective resolution I can understand that, however on this camera the sensor is such that the DX lenses will shoot as well as on any DX model and it also has a 1.2 crop factor mode which means now there is an FX camera that will shoot DX lenses better than any DX camera currently made. I'd say that counts as "compatible," especially since some of those lenses will be better than some of the FX lenses listed as compatible.
 
Avatar for Snapsort Snapsort (1:04 AM, June 09, 2011)
Thanks for the feedback Peter, and for taking the time to checkout LensHero.  I agree with your point about popularity, we're going to fix/improve that, just have a few things on our plate right now, including working on a site for phones: http://geekaphone.com
 
Peter (7:16 PM, June 04, 2011)
With regards to number of lenses, a simple adjustment would be to change to a square root scale. This would make things more-or-less fair for computing score. For what normal people would buy, Canon and Nikon are pretty much equivalent, and at best very marginally better than Alpha (they exist, but I have never run into anyone who owned a lens that didn't have an Alpha equivalent). Something like Four thirds is definitely behind, but it's hard to argue that it's ten times worse, since it also has most of the commonly used lenses available (coincidentally, it has around 45 lenses, not 19 -- you missed all of the compatible four-thirds lenses). 

I had not seen lenshero. That's a nice site. Thanks. Not quite as mature as Snapsort (I ran into a few errors in the first couple minutes of use), but still very useful. You may be interested in Dyxum as well -- it's a very similar site, but specific to Sony a-mount; it's more comprehensive, but not as well organized. It might give you some ideas. 

On an unrelated note, the site also seems to over-weigh camera popularity, and not capture either ergonomics or ultimate image quality at all (better image processing algorithms are probably the primary reason Canon cameras are as good as they are relative to the competition). 
 
Avatar for Snapsort Snapsort (2:08 AM, June 03, 2011)
Hi Peter, I can't really argue with your points!  Snapsort is just trying to provide some sort of summary to users about the lens availability, I do agree that we're erring on too simple right now, but at least it can be used to let users know that systems like the Sony NEX and Panasonic Micro Four Thirds have lens lenses available.


Have you seen our sister site http://lenshero.com?  We might integrate the two sites further, giving Snapsort more specific information on types and prices of lenses available for each system!
 
Peter (9:47 PM, May 31, 2011)
I don't like the way you calculate lens score. Number of lenses is a very poor metric. First of all, some camera bodies have built-in IS. This has two effects:

1) All lenses are stabilised. This substantially reduces the need for overlap in lenses. Canon makes a number of lenses in IS and non-IS versions. This makes no sense in a Sony or Pentax. This is not an advantage for Canon or Nikon, but your metric makes it into one.
2) I can get lenses for Sony and Pentax where I cannot have similar functionality for Canon or Nikon at any price. I do most of my shooting in low light, so I use fast prime lenses (mostly, an older Maxxum 50mm f/1.7). This gives me a high ISO sensor, fast lens, and image stabilization in one, cheap package. Neither Canon nor Nikon made any fast (f/1.8 or better) IS lenses until you get into telephoto. On Sony or Pentax, I can do f/1.4 or f/1.2 IS at any lens length. I cannot overemphasize how much of a win this is for the type of work I do.

Second of all, what matters is lens selection, which doesn't really come down to number of lenses. Sigma makes 4 superzoom lenses. Tamron makes 3. All of the major manufacturers make at least one. It makes little difference whether there are 10 superzooms for a mount, or just 1, so long as there is at least one good, reasonably priced model. Something major missing (such as Pentax's lack of a cheap 50mm) hurts. This should be weighed in some way. In the same way, not much of your reader base cares about the availability of Sigma's 200-500mm f/2.8 monster for $26k, and if they do, they'll buy a camera body to go with it. The key question is about having a good spread of available consumer-priced lenses, not just raw numbers.

Third of all, used lens availability and price matters a lot. Canon and Nikon have good availability, but high prices. Old Minolta lenses for Sony are very nice and extremely affordable, and easily found on eBay, but less easily found in stores or Craigslist. I have not looked at the others, but I would guess many of the declining brands will have great availability.