A Short Course Book
Using Your Digital Camera
A Guide To Great Photographs

Lens Accessories

A wide-angle lens converter attached to the camera using a lens adapter.
Many lenses have threads into which you can screw filters and other accessories. Here are just some of the accessories you can attach.
  • Only a few digital cameras have interchangeable lenses. Most have a built-in zoom lens that cannot be removed. To change its focal length, you use lens converters that screw in or slide onto the zoom lens.
  • Lens hoods protect the front element from bumps and keep stray light from striking the front of the lens and causing flare or ghost images.
  • Caps protect the front and rear of the lens when it's not in use. A body cap protects the camera when no lens is attached.
  • Protect filters keep the front element of your lens from getting scratched or dirty.
  • Circular polarizing filters remove reflections from glass, water, and other reflective surfaces, darken blue skies, and improve color saturation. If you use a linear polarizing filter, you can't use autofocus.
  • Skylight filters reduce the blue casts you often get when photographing subjects in the shade on sunny days.
  • UV filters absorb ultraviolet light and cut the haze when photographing landscapes or from airplanes.
  • Neutral density filters cut the light entering the camera so you can use slower shutter speeds or wider apertures in bright light.
  • Soft focus filters soften the focus to make portraits more flattering and to make hazy, romantic landscapes.
  • Close-up lenses magnify the subject without affecting aperture settings.
  • Color conversion filters let you fine-tune the way you capture colors.

A polarizing filter (left) darkens the sky and removes reflections from foliage so it has more color. A shot without a filter is shown at the right.
As a rule, use only one filter at a time or you may get vignetting.

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