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Lens Extenders #124

Lens Extenders #124

Lens Extenders #124

Photo Tips Podcast: Lens Extenders #124

The difference between an extension tube and an extender is that one gets you physically closer to an object so that it allows you to shoot small objects like flowers, while an extender brings far away objects closer. Both sit between the camera and the lens. I discussed the extension tube in detail in episode 42, so you can check that out for more information. The purpose of the extender is to multiply your effective focal length.

For instance, if you have a 2x extender on your 200mm lens, you now have a 400mm lens. It does this by introducing glass between your lens and your camera. Extenders are great because they're small and compact and you get more focal length for a fraction of the cost, both financially and weight-wise. However, remember the rule in photography. You can't get something for nothing. There are some serious disadvantages to using an extender versus buying an actual lens. First of all, you can lose between one and two stops of light and the second is the extender often makes your images a little bit soft as well. So if you paid a lot of money for that zoom lens, just know that it's not going to be quite as sharp with that extender on there. The question that is often asked is whether or not it's worth it. It really depends. It depends on your needs and your tolerance for the disadvantages I just mentioned.

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