Why use telephoto lenses?

A good telephoto lens can help you take photography to the next level. Learn why use telephoto lenses.  

1. What is a telephoto lens?

To test the camera

Telephoto lenses are very popular with both amateur and professional photographers. They are useful in a variety of situations and can help you take photography to the next level.

Telephoto lenses have a long range, allowing you to take pictures of distant objects or zoom in on objects in the frame. Typically, lenses with a focal length of 60 mm or more are considered “telephoto” lenses.

Many people confuse telephoto lenses with zoom lenses, but they are actually different things. Telephoto lenses can be zoom lenses, but not necessarily zoom lenses. Telephoto lenses come in a variety of focal lengths, ranging from “medium telephoto” (typically 70-200mm) to “ultra-telephoto” (longer than 300mm), which can be zoom or prime. It doesn’t matter if the lens is zooming, what matters is how long the focal length is. To see the difference for yourself, you can purchase a telephoto lens from the Apexel website. Apexel’s telephoto lenses are more affordable than other stores.

2. Why use telephoto lenses?

(1) Telephoto makes the subject look closer to the camera.


This is the most obvious reason to use telephoto lenses, and the reason most beginners consider buying a telephoto lens. Telephoto lenses allow you to photograph objects farther away. This comes in handy when you’re photographing something you can’t or don’t want to get close to.

The greater distance between you and your subject can help someone feel more comfortable in front of the camera. Taking pictures of a football game on the sidelines? Telephoto lenses will get you closer to the action. Want to take pictures of dangerous wildlife from your car safely? Telephoto lenses let you do that.

Telephoto also helps improve the visual relationship between the subject and its environment by creating a compressed look similar to how our brain views objects in relation to the background. Mountains that look almost right at the top of the cityscape are visually better in telephoto than in wide-angle. In short, telephoto lenses open up your photographic possibilities by making distant subjects look closer to the camera.

(2) Telephoto helps emphasize the blurry background.


If you’ve ever seen a photo with a clear subject but a blurry background and wondered how this effect was achieved, the answer is usually to use a telephoto lens. This use is especially common in portrait photography. The way to achieve this look is to shoot with a long lens and the maximum aperture available. For example, a 70-200mm telephoto lens shot at 200m using F/2.8 will isolate your subject from the beautiful creamy background.

In general, the longer the lens and the larger the aperture, the more of this effect you get. It actually has less to do with the lens itself and more to do with the distance of the subject. A longer lens allows you to shoot the subject from farther away, thereby perceptually shrinking the subject in the foreground while the background remains the same size.

(3) Telephoto is good at making flattering portraits.


One of the benefits of telephoto lenses for portrait work is that these lenses often have the effect of creating very flattering portraits. The distance between the camera and the subject affects how far objects appear in the picture and how they look at each other.

When you shoot at a longer focal length, the subject in the foreground will appear smaller relative to what is happening in the background. The effect can also make the features appear more in proportion. Add to that beautiful bokeh shot with a long lens and you have a great tool for portrait photography.

3. What are the common long focal lengths?

When deciding which focal length is best for you, much depends on how you plan to use it. Below we’ll discuss some common telephoto lens lengths (because they work well with full-frame cameras) and how and when to use them.

(1) 70-200mm

70-200mm lenses are very popular for their versatility and the stunning images they produce. 70mm is short enough to allow you to shoot things not too far away from your subject, while 200mm gives you enough distance to shoot things that are far away and allows you to shoot things that move quickly between relatively close and relatively far away, such as children and animals, with ease.

Using a wide aperture in this focal length range, such as F/2.8, will give you a nice blurred background and good isolation from your subject. If you prefer to shoot with a longer lens, the aesthetic and versatility of 70-200mm are unbeatable. This is the ideal telephoto focal range for portrait and wedding work.

(2) 85mm

apexel lens

These prime lenses are very popular among portrait photographers because they can produce exquisite blurred backgrounds and compression illusions that make your subjects more attractive while still allowing you to work relatively close to them. The advantage of an 85mm prime lens over a 70-200mm zoom lens is that it usually allows you to shoot at a wider aperture, which is better in low-light situations. Prime lenses also tend to be sharper and lighter than zoom lenses.

(3) 100-400mm

These lenses are slightly longer on the short end, but allow you to shoot more from farther away. These lenses are great for sport, wildlife, and any time you can’t or don’t want to get close. The downside of these lenses is that they are large and heavy, and their maximum aperture is usually not as wide as some shorter lenses. As a result, some people choose to use these lenses only in well-lit environments.

These lenses are perfect for subjects that are far away but easy to move around. For example, if you take a picture of a moose at 400 mm and it starts coming towards you, you will be able to zoom out a lot while still taking a picture of a moose. This zoom lens in the focal length range gives you great flexibility.

(4) 135mm

The 135mm is another very popular telephoto prime lens for portrait and wedding photographers. This lens gives you greater coverage, better compression illusion, and more spectacular bokeh than 85mm. These lenses are great for making subjects look closer together in photos. This is a good choice if you want to photograph a portrait that clearly shows the size of anything in the background.

(5) 600mm (and above)

These lenses are ideal for professional sports and wildlife photographers who like to shoot very distant subjects with very large apertures. The images these lenses can capture and the effects they create are amazing! The drawback of these lenses is that their very long fixed focal length means that their use is quite limited. They also tend to be very heavy and expensive.

4. What are the skills of using a telephoto lens?

(1) Stable


Camera shake has always been a problem in photography, but can be more noticeable when shooting with a telephoto lens. Reducing camera shake will help ensure that your photos are clearly in focus. Many telephoto lenses have built-in stabilization, which is useful when shooting with a long lens.

If your lens does not have built-in stabilization, consider using a tripod when shooting at a longer focal length. Tripods are cumbersome to carry and sometimes annoying to use, but at long focal lengths, they can be the difference between a goalie and a shot thrown in the trash. It is important to note that while stability is very important when photographing stationary objects, it becomes less important when photographing moving objects.

(2) The aperture


Aperture is a measure of the width of the lens’s inner ring that can be opened to let in light. It is represented as a fraction, which means that the smaller the bottom number, the wider your lens will open and the light will enter. A wide aperture is useful for several reasons. When the light is low, especially when shooting moving objects or not using any type of stabilization, shooting with a wider aperture will give you a faster shutter and hopefully accurate shots. A large aperture allows you to create photos with a shallow depth of field and take them more easily in darker conditions.

(3) The shallow depth of the field


In addition to making subjects look closer to the camera, one of the best advantages of telephoto lenses is their ability to produce images with a shallow depth of field. The longer your lens, the larger the aperture, the more blur you get. Shoot with a telephoto lens at F/2.8 with the right degree of separation between subject and background, allowing you to blur the background into oblivion!

5. Telephoto lenses are recommended

(1) 18x Telephoto Camera Lens With Clip for Mobile Phone

18x Telephoto Camera Lens With Clip for Mobile Phone


The telescope has 18 times zoom, which can adjust the focal length well.

The telescope can be used as a monocular.

Fit most kinds of mobile phones, including flip phones and bar phones.

The phone has a back camera, can be connected to the telescope through the clip.

Mobile phones’ quality of imaging can be improved evidently.

Applicable to watch the game, concerts, tourism, observe animal lovers, news reporter long-distance shooting, etc.

Private detective taking pictures forensics, geological exploration, forestry management, railway port scheduling and etc.


1) Please use it care, because lens is adjusted accurately, if it drops or hit, the field of vision maybe not match and the picture will deflect.

2) Please don’t drop into the water. If it drops into water, please repair it quickly.

3) Please don’t look at the sun absolutely, your eyes may be ache and blind sometimes.


Type: Phone Telescope (flexible)

Material: Optical lens, ABS

Actual Magnification: 18X

(2) Mobile Super 60X Telephoto Lens

Mobile Super


This is a newly designed high-quality optical 60X telescope zoom lens with an extendable tripod(Max 1.2m), meets your different needs of photography.

CONSIDERATE DESIGN WITH STURDY TRIPOD: This cell phone telephoto lens also comes with a balanced tripod and the tripod can be a selfie stick and extendable(Max 1.2m).

FMC is fully multi-coated, manufactured with advanced Optical Glass for HD images, shoot clear images without a dark circles around the corner.

Fit for 98% of mobile phone like iPhone/Samsung/iPad/HTC/ZTE/Xiaomi/Moto/Blackberry/Nokia….etc(also for iphone 12 Series)

The lens kit is perfect for everyone, from your friends to your parents. It fits in your pocket and is easy to install, carry and store, taking photos for parties, music festivals, camping, hiking, traveling, bird watching, moon, etc., and keeping all your delightful memories.


Magnification: 60X

Material: multi-coating optics+Aluminum Alloy+ABS plastic

FOV: 3.3°

Length: 260mm

Construction: 8 Elements 4 Groups

Interface: M17xP0.75

Weight: 590g

If you want to know more about telephoto lenses, you can visit the Apexel website or send us an email at sales@apexeloptic.com. Please feel free to contact us.  


Is the telephoto lens wide Angle?

The main difference between telephoto and wide-angle lenses: wide-angle lenses increase your horizontal field of view, while telephoto lenses let you focus on distant objects. Telephoto lenses are the selective focus, which means choosing which objects look sharp or blurry.

Do telephoto lenses have a shallow depth of field?

A telephoto lens has a much greater depth of field than a wide lens. This means that an 85mm lens will have a shallower depth of field than a 50mm lens. Simply separating your body from the other elements in your frame will add considerable distance to the background blur.

Are telephoto and zoom the same?

Some amateur photographers use “telephoto lens” as a synonym for “zoom lens”. In fact, the two shots are not exactly the same. A telephoto lens has a long focal length, traditionally that means a focal length of 60mm or more, but it doesn’t necessarily need to slide across a focal length range.

When should I use a telephoto lens?

Telephoto lenses bring you closer to your subject, making them ideal for shooting wildlife. With a telephoto lens, you can take pictures that look like you’re only a few steps away from your subject when you’re actually quite a distance away.

What is a good F stop for a telephoto lens?

To make the telephoto small enough, the telephoto terminal aperture is usually F/5.6 or F/6.3 for 400mm to 500mm lengths. A narrow aperture means a longer exposure time, leading to more vibration and movement in the exposure.

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