Do novice photographers choose a prime or zoom lens?

Do novice photographers choose a prime or zoom lens? Many people are still confused. Which lens should a new photographer buy first? If the first one buys a zoom lens, does the second one have to buy a prime lens? Today we will systematically explain to you what the prime lens is, what the zoom lens is, should be how to buy it.

1. What is a prime lens?

A prime lens is a lens that has only one fixed focal length, one focal segment, or field of view. Prime lenses have no zoom function. The design of the prime lens is simple, fast focusing speed and stable imaging quality.

The most common prime lenses in our daily photography range are 24mm, 35mm, 50mm, 85mm, and so on. Of course, a lot of wealthy high-end camera players will choose the long focal length of the prime lens, such as 200mm, 400mm, 600mm, 800mm, and so on.


Advantages (relative to zoom lenses): Larger aperture, larger aperture configurations can be made; The closest focus distance is generally closer; Generally smaller and lighter in size and weight than zoom lenses covering this focal segment; Sharpness and quality will be better.

Disadvantages (relative to zoom lenses): it is not convenient to use, and the shooting distance can only be changed by the photographer’s movement. If the scene is not fixed, it is impossible to shoot the picture you need.

2. What is a zoom lens?

A zoom lens is a camera lens that can change the focal length in a certain range, to get different widths and narrow field angles, different size images,s and different scopes of scenery. Zoom lenses can change the shooting range by changing the focal length without changing the shooting distance, so it is very conducive to picture composition. Because a zoom lens can serve as several prime lenses, traveling not only reduces the number of photographic equipment but also saves the time to change lenses.

There are many kinds of common zoom lenses in our daily life, such as 11-24mm, 14-24mm, 16-35mm, and so on. Standard focal segments such as 24-70mm, 24-85mm, 24-105mm, and so on. Long focal sections such as 70-200mm, 70-300mm, 100-400mm, and so on.


Advantages (relative to the prime lens): Easy to use, changing composition with just a zoom.

Disadvantages (relative to the prime lens): generally small aperture; It will be more expensive; Large volume; Unlike the focal segment, prime lens imaging quality is high.

3. Do novice photographers choose prime or zoom lenses?

Should a novice photographer buy a prime lens or a zoom lens? Before, there was a rumor on the Internet that choosing a prime lens was the way to learn photography. This concept is wrong. If you want better introductory photography, you should choose a zoom lens.

Prime lenses don’t always get you started with photography. The prime lens has a larger aperture and better image quality than the zoom lens covering the same focal segment, such as 35mm F1.4, 85mm F1.2, and so on. A lot of users look at these two things, so they are particularly keen on prime lenses. However, for beginners, the prime focus lens may not improve the level of photography, because the prime focus lens has only one focus segment, which can not allow beginners to try more focus segment options.

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Zoom lenses are recommended for novices. For beginners, zoom lenses are a better way to learn photography. Beginners don’t have deep concepts and ideas about the basics of daily framing and composition, so they have better creativity. After the prime lens is fixed in the focal segment, beginners’ play is limited. The zoom lens can make it more convenient for beginners to use. Even if they stand still, they can also try the composition differences brought by different focal segments through the zoom lens, so that they can quickly get familiar with different shooting methods of different focal segments.

For beginners, the first thing to do is to take the picture you want, rather than talking about the aperture and quality of these parts. Of course, there is a case that your budget is very abundant, and you want to try the convenience of the zoom lens, but also want to try the large aperture effect of the fixed focus lens, so you can buy multiple lenses to replace the use of one-time, and can also improve photography skills.

4. Do I have to buy a prime lens for the second lens?

The answer to this question is still no, the second lens can still choose zoom lens. In fact, for new photographers, the first lens is often a set of machine lens, such as 18-135mm, 18-55mm, 18-105mm, 24-105mm, 24-120mm, and so on focal segments. The general characteristic of the camera lens is that the focal segment is from wide-angle to medium and long focus, but the aperture is generally small, and the aperture of some lenses is not constant, so the image quality and virtualization ability are generally primary.


The second lens can consider the big ternary standard zoom lens. After exposure to photography for some time, many people will think that the set lens is no longer enough, so they begin to buy a second lens. The second lens can retain the relative focal segment and upgrade the aperture size.

If you buy a set of machine lenses, you find yourself particularly partial to a focal segment, then the second lens to choose a prime lens is also ok, but after the purchase of photographic training, there is only such a focal segment to choose from. Other focal segments are harder to train.

5. Apexel’s lens recommendation  

(1) Apexel HD 20-40X Zoom Lens, Telephoto Mobile Phone Zoom Lens with Tripods

Apexel HD 20-40X Zoom Lens
  • Truly Zoom Lens: The 20-40X telephoto zoom lens has dual adjustments to get clear photos from miles away. Rotating the focus ring gets sharper pictures; Rotating the Zoom ring to zoom 40x in real-time when you shoot from 20 meters away. Really a good companion for tourism, the favorite of animal observers. 
  • 4K HD Telephoto Zoom Lens: Compact design and made of multi-layer green coating on both sides of the lens with smaller size, Ocular and object glass keep in the same line, lower distortion, more reality than ever. Unlike plastic lenses, Apexel 20-40X telescope zoom lens has an elegant aluminum alloy housing which allows you to easily rotate the objective ring and fix the focus, and more it has a longer lifespan. 
  • Best Zoom Lens: Apexel smartphone telephoto lens break through the limited shooting distance, get a clear shot of subjects usually too far away to capture. This zoom lens can be used both as a telescope/telephoto lens, Best Choice for watching matches (football matches, basketball matches, etc.), concerts, bird watching, watching wild animals and scenery, etc. 
  • Compatible with Single/Multi-camera Phones: This zoom lens comes with a metal clip editor 98% mobile phone, compatible with iPhone 11 Pro XS MAX XS XR X 8 Plus 8 7 Plus 7 6 Plus 6 5S 5C 5 4S, Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus S8 Plus S8 S7 Edge S7 S6 Edge+ S6 Edge S6 LG iPad HTC One Plus HUAWEI P40 and other Android phones in the market. 
  • Best Gift: Comes with a stable phone tripod/EVA bag and remote,perfect for taking selfies or group shots(including the photographer) from a distance of up to 10mshutter, easy to carry around. Just choose APEXEL HD Zoom Lens and explore a further/clearer and more exciting world with your family/friends in daily life now. 

(2) Apexel Universal 18X Clip-On Telephoto Telescope Camera Mobile Phone Zoom lens

Apexel Universal 18X Clip-On Telephoto Telescope Camera Mobile Phone Zoom lens
  • PREMIUM QUALITY: Made of high-class glass, the HD lens with adjustable focal length will reduce glass flare & ghosting caused by reflections and capture sharp clear and professional level photos/videos. 
  • 18X TELESCOPE LEN: It is great for manual focusing. The focus ring enables adjustment by hand freely. You can change the focus of the image to make better effects and zoom in on distant subjects and get that high resolution picture even from afar. 
  • ENJOY IT:Perfect for long distance shooting such as wildlife, sports events, concerts, buildings, nature, landscapes etc. It also can be used without the phone and can work as monocular. 
  • PORTABLE & EASY TO USE: This lens is lightweight and compact, so it is a perfect travel size you can bring with you anytime, anywhere. It will fit conveniently in your bag or purse, making this a perfect companion for your travels and outdoor adventures. 
  • UNIVERSAL LENS CLIP: No Distortion and the unique clamp design compatible with most smart phones and mobile devices including iPhone 7/7 plus/6s/6s Plus/6, SamsungGalaxy, iPad, Tablet, and other Android smartphones. 

If you want to know more about Apexel lenses, you can visit the Apexel website for more information.


What is a zoom lens used for?

A zoom lens is an SLR or DSLR lens that offers a different focal length for the photographer to select from. A zoom lens can be manually adjusted by a user to create focused images throughout a wide range of distances from one’s photographic subject, from very close-up to very far away.

What is considered a zoom lens?

A zoom lens is a mechanical assembly of lens elements for which the focal length (and thus angle of view) can be varied, as opposed to a fixed focal length (FFL) lens (see prime lens). A true zoom lens also called a parfocal lens, is one that maintains focus when its focal length changes.

Is a prime lens better than a zoom?

Generally speaking, prime lenses are sharper than zoom lenses of comparable focal lengths. This is because zoom lenses have extra glass inside that has to move to shift the focal length, causing some diffraction. Still, these days there are many excellent and very sharp zoom lenses on the market.

What are the disadvantages of a zoom lens?

Zoom lenses do have some disadvantages compared to prime lenses that you should take into consideration. A zoom lens is usually not as sharp as prime lenses. Another is that the zoom lens is slower. Because the maximum aperture of a zoom lens is narrower, it lets less light pass into the camera.

Can a prime lens zoom?

A prime lens is a fixed focal length lens that does not allow you to zoom in or out. In short, the determined focal length of the lens is the distance between the point of convergence in your lens to the sensor or film in your camera. Prime lenses allow a handful of benefits compared to their zoom counterparts.

Which is better telephoto or zoom lens?

A telephoto lens is optimized for long reach (good magnification at long distances). A zoom lens is one with variable focal length, usually ranging from wide to long.

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