Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digicam Help > General Discussion

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Aug 19, 2009, 8:32 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
donp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Naperville, IL.
Posts: 185
Default Most available lens?

I was wondering which brand of camera has the most choices of lens? I have a Sony and there are hundreds of lenses for it. Minolta, Sony, Sigma, Tamron and probably some I can't think of. I know that Sigma for instance makes lenses for a bunch of cameras, but because Sony bought out Minolta, they started out with a huge bunch of choices. Any thoughts?
donp is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Aug 19, 2009, 10:15 AM   #2
Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529
Default

It depends on how you want to classify. Pentax, for instance, is backward compatible for any lens made for the system. But those older lenses are manual focus and some manual aperture.

Canon on the other hand is NOT backward compatible but has a larger selection of currently in-production lenses available.

Oly probably has the largest selection of designed-specifically-for-digital lenses since none of the old film lenses will work on 4/3 system.
JohnG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 19, 2009, 11:33 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
TCav's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Washington, DC, Metro Area, Maryland
Posts: 13,543
Default

New:

The manufacturer with the largest selection of new lenses is Canon, followed closely by Nikon (and Fuji). In addition to the OEM lenses, both Canon and Nikon users have a choice of all new Sigma, Tamron and Tokina lenses as well. But to be clear, Nikon's entry level dSLRs don't have an internal autofocus motor, so many of the lenses that will autofocus on the more upscale models won't on those.

Sony and Pentax (and Samsung) follow and are about equal, though Sony has more telephoto zoom lenses while Pentax has more fast primes. Also, Tokina doesn't currently offer lenses for either Sony or Pentax (though Tokina makes some of Pentax' OEM lenses, just as Tamron makes some of Sony's), and only about half of Sigma's and Tamron's current line-up are available for Sony and Pentax.

Nikon's entry level dSLRs follow, and then there's Olympus. While Olympus does have a reasonable selection of OEM lenses, there are few third party lenses available.

Used:

Canon and Nikon excel here as well, but since they rely on optical image stabilization in the lens, and those stabilized lenses are relatively new, their selection of used stablized lenses is slim.

Sony (and Minolta) and Pentax can both use earlier lenses designed for their film SLRs, and since they use sensor shift image stabilization int he camera body, they can use all those earlier lenses and they will be stabilized.

Again, since Nikon's entry level dSLRs don't have an internal autofocus motor, and few used lenses have built-in motors, the selection of used lenses for these dSLRs is lean.

Since Olympus started over with a new lens mount when they went digital, none of the earlier Olympus lenses will work on the newer camera bodies, so the selection of used lenses for Olympus dSLRs is sparce.

You thought that was a simple question, didn't you?
__________________
  • The lens is the thing.
  • 'Full Frame' is the new 'Medium Format'.
  • "One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." - Tex Johnston, Boeing 707 test pilot.
TCav is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 20, 2009, 8:02 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
donp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Naperville, IL.
Posts: 185
Default

Thanks to both of you. Yes, I did think it would be a easy answer. I asked it because so many times you see advice saying "don't buy a Sony because there aren't a lot of lenses available for it". Usually by Nikon or Canon owners.
donp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 20, 2009, 8:14 AM   #5
Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529
Default

One other point to the discussion is: inventory levels. Right now it's bad for a lot of manufacturers with the recession, stock levels are low across the board. But typically, a given store will stock lenses for the systems they move most. For example, about 2 years ago Pentax had a decent list of lenses that were currently manufactured but you couldn't find them anywhere. I don't believe that's the case anymore. So that plays a part in things to. It doesn't matter if Manufacturer A makes a lens but no store stocks it.
JohnG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 20, 2009, 12:31 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
TCav's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Washington, DC, Metro Area, Maryland
Posts: 13,543
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by donp View Post
... so many times you see advice saying "don't buy a Sony because there aren't a lot of lenses available for it".
What they aren't saying is that, new or used, Sony and Pentax have more stabilized lenses than Canon and Nikon.
__________________
  • The lens is the thing.
  • 'Full Frame' is the new 'Medium Format'.
  • "One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." - Tex Johnston, Boeing 707 test pilot.
TCav is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 20, 2009, 8:13 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
VTphotog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Extreme Northeastern Vermont, USA
Posts: 4,214
Default

How many lenses do you need? I would venture to guess that one could come up with a lens for just about any camera to fit whatever your perceived need.

brian
VTphotog is online now   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 20, 2009, 8:58 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 324
Default

Ignore 3rd party lenses, used lenses and lenses crippled or limited in their ability to function with every camera in the product line.

Who wins the battle? Canon. Most current in production lenses that are not limited in their ability to function from camera body to camera body.

Does more lenses make a better camera line? Yes, no, maybe. Having more choices is good, if you really need the additional choices. Remember, if the camera line already makes the single lens you need then all the extra lenses in the product line are there strictly for entertainment purposes.


Why do I eliminate 3rd party lenses? Typically the lenses are readily available across most mounts and seldom do 3rd party companys offers a high quality lens design that the camera body manufacturer does not offer. I would consider 3rd party lenses a bonus (sometimes equal in quality, sometimes lower in price, wonderful benefit if you can purchase one, but never the reason to buy a Brand X camera). Remember, most people are not going to specifically choose a 3rd party lens and then try to find a camera body to fit the lens.


Used lenses? Risk versus reward, aging component issues (seals, internal mounts etc), potential limited ability to repair the lens, ability/ease of locating the product. I would love to find a cherry '65 Mustang with 9 original miles, but I don't buy 4 extra OEM tires at a garage sale to fit the '65 Mustang because one day I might be able to find my fantasy car. The same thought process should apply to used lenses. Find the perfect used lens that fits your camera? Great. Buying a new Nikon because you hope to one day find a lens discontinued in 1985? Not a wise move. Buying a used Canon lens because you might buy a Canon camera? Not real bright. Do used lenses exist? Yes. Should the ability to find a used lens be a decision making process in buying a camera? Not likely.

Crippled lenses are like used lenses. Who buys a new Pentax from 2009 because the lens made in 1969 is backwards compatible and will manually focus on today's camera? One person, the guy who already owns the 1969 model lens. Everybody else should not buy a new Pentex in hopes of finding the 1969 model lens.
StevieDgpt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 21, 2009, 6:50 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
TCav's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Washington, DC, Metro Area, Maryland
Posts: 13,543
Default

StevieDgpt,

That's a bit extreme. I've had my KM5D for over two and a half years, and gone through more than a few lenses, new and used. Of the five lenses I've got now, only one of them was purchased new (a Tamron 17-50/2.8, a third party lens.) True, I didn't buy the camera body specifically to use any of the lenses I've got now, but the lens I thought I wanted to buy the camera for was a disappointment and was put on the auction block.

Lenses are the anvils of photography. If there's something wrong with a lens, it's relatively easy to discover, and if a lens is good it will probably remain good for some time to come. There's no valid reason to summarily dismiss the idea of a used lens.
__________________
  • The lens is the thing.
  • 'Full Frame' is the new 'Medium Format'.
  • "One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." - Tex Johnston, Boeing 707 test pilot.
TCav is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 21, 2009, 7:31 AM   #10
Senior Member
 
rjseeney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Taylor Mill, Kentucky
Posts: 2,398
Default

Quote:
Ignore 3rd party lenses, used lenses and lenses crippled or limited in their ability to function with every camera in the product line.
I couldn't disagree more. There are just as many poor lenses made by the camera companies as by third parties. Personally, I've found Sigma and Tamron lenses to represent great value with similiar performance when compared to the Nikon version (I don't shoot other brands, but I'm sure the same holds true). My fast lenses (f2.8) are all third party lenses and I got all three of them (Sigma 18-50, Sigma 50-150 and Tamron 28-75) for what I would have paid for 1 Nikon Pro-level lens. Sure the build quality isn't as good, but optically they are all excellent, and for my purposes made the most sense for the work I do with my camera.

Also, I've bought most of my lenses used and never experienced any issues. The only lens I've ever had to have repaired, was a Nikkor that I purchased new (of course the 5 year warranty was nice in this instance). Used lenses represent a great value, much like a used car....you can get more lens for less money, as long as you buy from a reputable source.
rjseeney is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 8:57 AM.