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Old Mar 28, 2011, 11:03 AM   #1
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Default Is 28mm considered wide angle?

I was having this discussion with a colleague and she kept mentioning 28mm and wide angle in the same phrase. I always thought that wide angle was everything below 28mm?
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Old Mar 28, 2011, 11:09 AM   #2
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This is from Wikipedia. Hope it helps.

Quote:
For a full-frame 35 mm camera with a 36 mm by 24 mm format, the diagonal measures 43.3 mm and by custom, the normal lens adopted by most manufacturers is 50 mm. Also by custom, a lens of focal length 35 mm or less is considered wide-angle.[citation needed]
By definition, wide-angle lenses differ from ultra wide angle lenses in that the latter have a focal length shorter than the short side of the film or sensor, which means that in 35mm, a wide-angle lens has a focal length between 35 and 24 mm, while an ultra wide-angle lens has a focal length shorter than 24 mm.
Common wide-angle and ultra wide-angle lenses for a full-frame 35 mm camera are 35, 28, 24, 21, 20, 18 and 14 mm. Many of the lenses in this range will produce a more or less rectilinear image at the film plane, though some degree of barrel distortion is not uncommon here.
Ultra wide-angle lenses that do not produce a rectilinear image (i.e., exhibit barrel distortion) are called fisheye lenses. Common focal lengths for these in a 35 mm camera are 6 to 8 mm (which produce a circular image). Lenses with focal lengths of 8 to 16 mm may be either rectilinear or fisheye designs.
Wide-angle lenses come in both fixed-focal-length and zoom varieties. For 35 mm cameras, lenses producing rectilinear images can be found at focal lengths as short as 8 mm, including zoom lenses with ranges of 2:1 that begin at 12 mm.
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Old Mar 28, 2011, 11:27 AM   #3
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And keep in mind, that while 28mm is a wide angle on a full frame or 35mm camera, on a 4/3rds camera you double the focal length, so the 4/3 28mm has the same field of view as a 56mm (or normal lens). You hit wide angle at 14mm and less on a 4/3rds.
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Old Mar 28, 2011, 12:05 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven R View Post
And keep in mind, that while 28mm is a wide angle on a full frame or 35mm camera, on a 4/3rds camera you double the focal length, so the 4/3 28mm has the same field of view as a 56mm (or normal lens). You hit wide angle at 14mm and less on a 4/3rds.
I should have specified after sensor multipliers applied... so, is 14mm on 4/3 considered wide angle?
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Old Mar 28, 2011, 12:13 PM   #5
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Hi Dan,

Both Gary and Steven have provided you with accurate information relative to what the effective focal length for a lens typically used on a film camera will be when mounted to an olympus digital camera.

Here is a link to an article on the subject of using film camera lenses on digital camera bodies. It goes a long way towards not only answering your question but factors that most people don't discuss when considering buying a 'legacy lens'
http://www.wrotniak.net/photo/quest/q08.html

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Old Mar 28, 2011, 12:48 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TekiusFanatikus View Post
I should have specified after sensor multipliers applied... so, is 14mm on 4/3 considered wide angle?
Personally, on a 4/3 I would consider that a wide angle, and a FL less than 12mm to be an UWA. But despite what the Wiki article said, I don't know of anyone that feels that there is a strict FL definition of WA and UWA. Although, I don't know how Steven feels about it - you never know with him...

Ted

Last edited by tkurkowski; Mar 28, 2011 at 12:51 PM.
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Old Mar 28, 2011, 1:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TekiusFanatikus View Post
I was having this discussion with a colleague and she kept mentioning 28mm and wide angle in the same phrase. I always thought that wide angle was everything below 28mm?
The 28mm effective focal length has always been a sort of delineation point where lenses started being called wide angle. 35-40mm was semi-wide, and 20mm or so where ultra-wides started. For my own use, the 12mm (24mm effective focal length) starting point of the 12-60mm Zuiko is where I prefer my "normal" lens to start. It goes just wide enough that it works for most of my extra wide angle shots and makes the point at which I grab for the 9-18mm Zuiko much more obvious.

Nikon and Canon realized this as well a few years ago when their 28-70mm "normal" pro zooms were upgraded to start at 24mm as well.

Last edited by Greg Chappell; Mar 28, 2011 at 1:39 PM.
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