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The Best Lenses for Night Photography: A Case for Rokinon Primes

Gear Talk

David Kingham is a landscape photographer who focuses (pun intended?) on the night sky. He set out to find the best astrophotography and night photography lenses for their price point. Discover why Rokinon lenses may transform how you shoot.


The Best Lenses for Night Photography

by David Kingham

Prime vs Zoom

What do you want in a lens for night photography? The most important factor is how much light a lens will let in so that we can shoot at lower ISOs– this means apertures of f/2.8 or greater (f/1.4 being preferred). Most zoom lenses only go to f/2.8 and, while they are perfectly okay for night photography, they are not the ultimate lenses to use.

Enter the prime lens! A prime lens is a fixed-focal-length lens that is designed to have much larger apertures. If you have looked into the major manufacturers’ primes (Nikon, Canon, Zeiss) you may be thinking I’m crazy right now because they are expensive (unless, of course, you rent them)! I went on a search for lenses with the ultimate quality-to-price ratio.

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The Poor Man’s Tilt-Shift: Freelensing Your Way to a Specialty Lens

Gear Talk Tips & Tricks

While we’ll never condone the wanton destruction of a lens (especially one of ours), sometimes a little home reverse engineering can do wonders–or at least make for a fun weekend project. This is exactly what photographer Jay Cassario did over at Lightshop. He took a $120 lens and converted into a tilt-shift, saving himself about $1,000. Of course, he could have just rented a tilt-shift lens from us but that is not the point! Read all about Jay’s  (more…)

Cool Stuff – Week of April 23, 2013

Cool Stuff

Welcome to Cool Stuff, a weekly feature where we post our favorite links from the past week, including our favorite articles and how-tos, videos, images and more.

  • This one falls into the “Ooops, how’d I miss that?” category. Canon is presenting a series on time-lapse photography with none other than Vincent Laforet. Part 2 is now out, and is embedded here for your viewing pleasure. (more…)

BorrowLenses.com Fun at the 2013 NAB Show: Day Three

BL News Gear Talk

BorrowLenses.com is at the 2013 NAB Show in Las Vegas! If you are here, too, please come visit us in booth #C9550! We have great cameras for folks to try out and other surprise goodies, including a chance to win a free rental from us! Not at NAB? That’s ok – take a virtual tour with us below. Here are some of the shots we were able to take during quick breaks. See more here and here.

BorrowLenses.com Fun at the 2013 NAB Show: Day Two

BL News Gear Talk

BorrowLenses.com is at the 2013 NAB Show in Las Vegas! If you are here, too, please come visit us in booth #C9550! We have great cameras for folks to try out and other surprise goodies, including a chance to win a free rental from us!

Not at NAB? That’s ok – take a virtual tour with us below. We’ll be posting pictures and videos all week so be sure to check our blog for more fun footage!

New Zacuto Stabilization Shoulder-Mount Rigs Available to Rent at BorrowLenses.com

Gear Talk

Zacuto makes high-quality, USA-manufactured videography and photography accessories and stabilization rigs for pro-level cameras and DSLRs alike. Shoot like a pro for a fraction of the price! Get familiar with our new kits.

Capture Motion in Car Photography with these Shot List Tips

Tips & Tricks

Interested in car photography? Jim Frenak, lead photographer at FPI Studios, recently shot the new 2014 Chevy Impala for Chevy’s West Coast PR blog. Read about how FPI Studios got the shot by pre-planning with a shot list and employing a couple of popular techniques for capturing a sense of motion.

Kodak’s First Canon-based DSLR: A 1.3 Megapixel Slice of Photographic History

Gear Talk

Learn more about the EOS-DCS 3, Kodak’s very first Canon-based digital SLR–a 1.3 megapixel, no-LCD, nearly 4-pound behemoth that cost around $16,000!

Cool Stuff, Week of February 1, 2013

Cool Stuff

Welcome to Cool Stuff, a weekly feature where we post our favorite links from the past week, including our favorite articles and how-tos, videos, images and more.

  • We love it when one of our own gets a nod from someone we admire. Our very own Alex Huff was mentioned in this week’s episode of Photography Tips and Tricks, by none other than R.C. Concepcion. Have a look at the end of the video below.
  • The Sony RX1 has become a favorite around these parts; check out this Russian-made turret universal optical viewfinder that seems to work perfectly with it.
  • Any time Philip Bloom does a gear review, we tend to drop everything and listen. Here, he breaks down the Canon 1DC for you. As usual, it’s a thorough, full-featured review.
  • This one’s for the retouchers among you. The guys at PhotoShelter have established a reputation not just for being a great photo hosting service, but also for bringing you some fantastic original content via their blog. In this webinar, they talk to veteran retoucher Amy Dresser about her process and technique – and it’s worth watching every second.
  • And finally, from the “If he opens his mouth to talk, you should be quiet and listen department,” the Phillipines’ 24/7 cable news network, ANC, sat down with Joe McNally for a really good interview.

 And now, for the BorrowLenses.com Roundup!

That’s it for this week’s Cool Stuff. As always, questions and feedback are welcome in the comments below.

Metabones Canon EF to Sony NEX Speed Booster Adds Full Frame Versatility in the Crop Sensor Video World

BL News

Learn more about how this adapter can widen your lenses and give you an extra f-stop for a full frame effect on cropped sensors.

Our Take and Test Footage on the Canon 1D C DSLR with 4K Video

Gear Talk

Canon has added yet another camera to their cinema line, the 1D C. This addition gives professional and novice filmmakers alike a formidable number of shooting choices, not to mention access to a wide variety of cine-lenses. Get our take on it!

The Canon MP-E 65mm Macro Puts the Microscopic Within Reach

Gear Talk

The Canon MP-E 65mm Macro Lens is more than a lens–it is like a portable microscope with the ability to fill an entire 35mm frame with the texture of something as small as a grain of rice. Learn more about one of BorrowLenses.com’s most unique lenses!

Cool Stuff – Week of January 6, 2013

Cool Stuff

Welcome to Cool Stuff, a weekly feature where we post our favorite links from the past week, including our favorite articles and how-tos, videos, images and more.

That’s it for this week’s Cool Stuff. As always, questions and feedback are welcome in the comments below.

Quick Tip: Optimize Canon 5D Mark III Write Speeds – Avoid Using SD Cards

Gear Talk Tips & Tricks

Photographer Jeff Cable discovered something interesting about the 5D Mark III when he was doing some high-speed shooting–it’s slow, but only under certain circumstances. Click here to read more about when and when you should not use the SD slot in the 5D Mark III.