Super telephoto lens: features & types

A telephoto lens that is indispensable for shooting airplanes and railroads, and shooting athletic meet. On the other hand, when it comes to super-telephoto lenses, there are many larger and heavier lenses, and it may be difficult to differentiate them from telephoto lenses. Therefore, this time,we will introduce how to select a super-telephoto lens of 300 mm or more, which is used by many photographers regardless of professional or amateur, and recommended lenses.

What kind of lens is a telephoto lens?
A telephoto lens is a lens with a narrower angle of view than a standard lens, and refers to a lens with a focal length of 70 mm or more in full-frame conversion. There are mainly 100mm, 300mm, 600mm, etc., and it is possible to classify by "focal length" and "presence / absence of zoom". Now, let's introduce four features of the telephoto lens.

Features of telephoto lens
Some lenses cannot be zoomed
The telephoto lens can zoom can not be "a telephoto zoom lens" zoom "telephoto single focal length lens" There is. The telephoto zoom lens can shoot in a wide range of focal lengths such as 200mm-400mm. The zoom function is necessary for shooting moving subjects such as trains, airplanes, motor shows, and wild birds with a wide range of motion. Although zooming is not possible with a telephoto single focus lens, it is the best lens for shooting the setting sun, the moon, etc., and for shooting buildings from a distance.

A compression effect is created
The compression effect is also one of the features of the telephoto lens. The compression effect is a photograph that looks like the subject has lost its sense of depth. You can take a picture in which the distance between the two subjects can be seen closer by eliminating the perspective of the subject in the distance and the subject in the foreground. For example, when a foot race of an athletic meet is photographed from the goal position with a telephoto lens, even if the distance between the child running at the front and the child running behind is actually different, if the telephoto lens is used, the distance between the two people is close. It is possible to take pictures that are full of emotion.

Bokeh can be enjoyed easily
The background blur is determined by the depth of field. A telephoto lens with a long focal length has a shallow depth of field, so you can easily enjoy bokeh. With a standard lens, it is necessary to adjust the bokeh with the open F value, but with a telephoto lens, the depth of field is shallow, so you can easily create a bokeh with just one lens and make the subject stand out. For those who want to enjoy the bokeh more, it is recommended to use a single focus lens that emphasizes the image because you can enjoy the bokeh even more.

Cutting effect
One of the characteristics of telephoto lenses is that they have a narrow angle of view. It is possible to emphasize the subject by cropping a narrow area. It can be said that the merit is that the image quality is maintained beautifully even if a part of the work taken with a wide angle of view is trimmed. The disadvantage is that with a single focus lens, you cannot adjust the angle of view by zooming, so you have to move a lot to adjust the position.

Types of telephoto lenses
Super telephoto zoom lens
A super-telephoto lens is a lens with a focal length of 300 mm or more. Compared to a telephoto lens, the characteristics are extremely strong. In general, super-telephoto lenses are used to shoot vehicles such as airplanes and trains, motor shows, and wild birds in the distance. The focal length can be adjusted by zooming, which makes it ideal for shooting moving subjects.

Telephoto single focus lens
A fixed focal length lens is a lens with a fixed focal length. The focal length is fixed, so you cannot zoom. However, there is a big difference in the number of lenses that can be made between a single focus lens and a zoom lens. Since the number of lenses in a single focus is small and the amount of light loss is small, the overall "light quality" such as image clearness, contrast, color development, and brightness is high, and the image is beautiful. Check more on

How to choose a super telephoto lens
From here, I will explain the points when choosing a super-telephoto lens with a focal length of 300 mm or more among telephoto lenses.

Be aware of what you want to shoot
Since the super-telephoto lens has a focal length of 300 mm or more, it is suitable for shooting when there is a subject at a considerable distance such as a wild bird, a railroad, or an airplane. It is not always necessary to use a super-telephoto lens when shooting in a range where the subject can be fixed and the distance can be adjusted, such as portraits and studio shots. This is a good choice when you want to focus on what you want to shoot, such as when you want to take a close-up of a part of the scenery.

Many telephoto lenses have a large body and are heavy, so women and those who are not confident in their physical strength are not suitable for long-time shooting. Before purchasing, we recommend that you actually bring it with you at a store or take a test shot using the rental service. When using a tripod mount, if you attach a tripod quick shoe to the camera body, the weight of the lens will put a burden on the connection between the camera and the lens, so attach the quick shoe to the tripod mount first. Let's attach it to a tripod.

Presence or absence of image stabilization function
Since the super-telephoto lens is long and heavy, even a 1mm shift in the hand will lead to a large blur. If you are planning to take handheld shots, the image stabilization function will be essential. If the camera has a built-in image stabilization mechanism in the body of a single-lens reflex camera or mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera, the image stabilization mechanism is not required for the lens, but the in-body image stabilization is effective by attaching a dedicated lens. Please note that some cameras will become. If there is no image stabilization inside the camera body, be sure to choose one that has a built-in image stabilization mechanism in the lens.