Hasselblad 500EL

Medium format MF film SLR camera


Production details:
Order No.:AKMOC
System: Hasselblad V (1957)
Maximum format:Medium format 6x6
Film type:120 roll film
Mount and Flange focal distance:Hasselblad V [74.9mm]
Type:In-lens leaf shutter
Exposure metering:None
Exposure modes:Manual
Physical characteristics:
Weight:<No data>
Dimensions:<No data>

Manufacturer description #1

"The System." Now It has electric drive. So you can create where you used to just crank.

People are always saying, "'the system' is more versatile than anything called 'camera'." Well, if you thought that before, you won't believe "the system" now. You see, now there's the Hasselblad 500EL, the first electric motor-driven 2 1/4 x 2 1/4 single lens reflex. And it'll let you do what you've probably never been able to do before. The new 500EL cocks the shutter and advances the film automatically. So you can clickclickclick off a whole series of shots without ever looking up. Or moving a muscle. Without ever losing sight of your subject. Right now you might say "Fine, I want the 500EL. But what am I supposed to do with all the Hasselblad lenses and backs I have?" The answer is simple: use the 500EL as an addition to "the system." It will take any lenses, magazines, or viewfinders, and most accessories the 500C will take. What else can the 500EL do? Well, first of all, you don't have to even be near it when you're clicking off pictures. (There's nothing worse than being tied to your camera when you'd like to be working with your subject.) So by using the 500EL with a special release cord, you can clickclickclick at distances of up to 200 yards. Or by adding the new remote-control Hasselblad radio transmittr, you can clickclickclick from even miles away. And then there's time lapse. By adding a Hasselblad timer to the 500EL you can shoot automatically at intervals anywhere from one second to sixty hours. (With that kind of time-lapse, we dare say there's little you can't do)

Now you know about the 500EL. But it's only part of the story. The rest has to do with interchangeability. The thing that makes "the system" the system.

In the area of lenses, "the system" doesn't have one or two. The number is seven. 50, 80, 120, 120s, 150, 250 and 500mm. Each is Zeiss. Each has a Synchro-Compur shutter. Each is completely interchangeable. And film backs. You get a choice of four. Three for roll film, each in a different format. One for cut film. Each interchangeable. So you can go from color to black and white, indoor to outdoor film mid-roll. Viewfinders, too. "The system" gives you five. (That's four more than most "cameras.") Eye-level prisms, magnifying hoods, the works. All interchangeable. Plus, a truck-full of accessories.

Now, with the addition of the 500EL, we can say, more than ever, "This is a system. Not to be confused with a camera."

Manufacturer description #2

Hasselblad 500 EL - the first electric motor-driven 2 1/4 x 2 1/4 SLR - is a camera far above the ordinary. A reliable electric motor gives the photographer greater freedom to concentrate on picture composition by relieving him of the work of advancing the film and cocking the shutter. He can work faster and more effectively. After exposure, the Hasselblad 500 EL automatically advances the film to the next frame, cocks the shutter and is immediately ready for the next shot.

By means of long release cords, timer or radio control, the Hasselblad 500 EL can be operated remotely. Using the timer, exposures can be made at intervals ranging between two seconds and 60 hours. The camera works day and night without requiring any attention other than loading with film. A radio transmitter can be used to release the camera at even greater distances. In addition to its own special features, the Hasselblad 500 EL exploits all the versatility and interchangeability of the entire Hasselblad system.

Offering fresh and wider photographic scope, the Hasselblad 500 EL sets new standards in modern camera design.

The Hasselblad 500 C, 500 EL and Super Wide C comprise the nucleus of a comprehensive camera system. Characterized by interchangeability and versatility, the Hasselblad system is the master of any photographic subject. Numerous accessories are carefully conceived and skillfully designed to integrate with the camera. High-resolution Carl Zeiss lenses with focal lengths ranging between 38 and 500 mm allow a choice of any desired picture area. Different negative sizes and types of film can be switched in seconds, using the interchangeable film magazines. Extra viewfinders augment the standard focusing hood. Filters provide dramatic picture effects. Close-up accessories permit the photographer to explore unimagined areas of photography.

Examples are endless; Hasselblad has absolutely everything. Hasselblad is therefore the natural choice for demanding professional and enthusiastic amateur alike. Both choose Hasselblad for versatility and virtually unlimited application.


The Hasselblad 500 EL is an electric motor-driven 2 1/4 x 2 1/4 SLR camera. The motor is integral with the camera and is powered by one or two rechargeable batteries, each of which lasts for 1,000 exposures on a single charge. With the Hasselblad 500 EL it is possible to choose between five different ways of making an exposure by means of a selector knob. The lens - an 80 mm Zeiss Planar f. 2.8 - features a fully synchronized between-lens shutter, manual and automatic diaphragm, automatic depth-of-field indicators and exposure value scale. The film magazine for 12 2 1/4 x 2 1/4 pictures is intended for standard 120 roll film. A pop-up magnifier incorporated in the focusing hood facilitates accurate focusing on the groundglass which, due to its Fresnell lens, shows a brilliant, sharp-edged image. Lens, magazine and focusing hood are readily exchangeable. Supplied as standard with the Hasselblad 500 EL is recharge unit I for 110/220 volt a.cc operation. This unit is designed for charging one or two batteries in the camera.

Manufacturer description #3

The Hasselblad 500EL is basically a Hasselblad 500C, but it has an electric motor drive built into its base. This motor undertakes the mechanical tasks of advancing the film and cocking the shutter, giving the photographer greater freedom to concentrate on the actual photographic work, focusing and exposing. The motor is powered by one or two rechargeable batteries, each giving 1,000 exposures per charge.

The camera uses the same lenses and shutter, finder and magazine unit as the Model 500C. As it is best used with the magazine giving 70 pictures, it is usually supplied as the 500EL/70.

Manufacturer description #4

In December 1968,a third Hasselblad joined the space program - the electrically-driven 500EL. The event was the flight of Apollo 8. Two 500ELs went along - one with an 80mm lens, the other with a Zeiss Sonnar 250mm lens - plus 7 interchangeable 70mm magazines.

This was the first time that men journeyed from earth to orbit another world. The photographs from this voyage were essential in planning the forthcoming lunar landing.

The Hasselblad 500EL allowed more photographs to be taken with less effort, because no film winding was necessary. After each exposure the 500EL automatically readies itself for the next shot by advancing the film and cocking the shutter.

This Hasselblad is the only electrically-driven 2 1/4" camera on earth. Because of its automatic features, it can be successfully operated from a distance, freeing the photographer from the camera and allowing him to work more with his subject. That's part of the reason why the Hasselblad 500EL/M has won the esteem of advertising and publicity photographers, as well as sports, wildlife, industrial and scientific photographers.

Manufacturer description #5

This is the Hasselblad that took the pictures of the moon.

It looks very much like an earth Hasselblad. To be specific, it looks very much like the electrically driven Hasselblad 500 EL.

The EL looks a bit fancier, of course, because the space Hasselblad was stripped down according to NASA specifications and equipped with larger controls so that an astronaut could operate it while wearing heavy gloves. And you'll also find a hinge here and there on the space Hasselblad that you won't find on the earth EL, because anything that's unattached in a weightless space capsule floats away. But both Hasselblads are brothers under the skin. Which only goes to prove that some things true on earth are just as true 60 miles above the moon.

This came as no great surprise to NASA. By the time Hasselblad was selected for the Apollo 8 mission, it had already brought back hundreds of perfect photographs from earlier space missions, beginning in 1962. And even before that, Hasselblad had proven itself a hundred thousand times over again on earth. Yet despite Hasselblad's complex technical precision, a man who was not a photographer - an astronaut - could use it skillfully.

NASA was not the first to discover this. Scientists, engineers, industrialists, and pilots as well as a multitude of serious amateurs had already adopted Hasselblad for their own specific earthly needs...

Its single lens reflex viewing system, its enlarged format size (2 1/4 square), its eight optically perfect Carl Zeiss automatic lenses (40, 50, 80, 120, 135, 150, 250, and 500mm), and its five different instantly interchangeable film magazines allowing from 12 to 70 exposures on a single magazine load, provided unprecedented versatility and photographic freedom, with the security of total reliability even under the most extreme conditions.

In the case of the electrically driven EL, the film even advances automatically. This was crucial in the Apollo 8 flight. One of the two space Hasselblads, equipped with an 80mm lens, a transistorized timer which tripped the camera, and aimed directly at the surface of the moon, automatically photographed a picture every 20 seconds for three of the 10 revolutions around the moon. Similar automatic set-ups have been employed on earth with equally successful results.

But one may not need an electrically driven Hasselblad. In that case, there are two other Hasselblads, the standard 500C and the Super Wide C with a 38mm, 90° angle of view Zeiss Biogon f/4.5 lens.

Both have been "spaced tested" in the earlier Mercury and Gemini flights, and in July of 1966 one of the NASA Astronauts accidentally sent a Super Wide C into orbit around the earth.

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Chromatic aberration

There are two kinds of chromatic aberration: longitudinal and lateral. Longitudinal chromatic aberration is a variation in location of the image plane with changes in wave lengths. It produces the image point surrounded by different colors which result in a blurred image in black-and-white pictures. Lateral chromatic aberration is a variation in image size or magnification with wave length. This aberration does not appear at axial image points but toward the surrounding area, proportional to the distance from the center of the image field. Stopping down the lens has only a limited effect on these aberrations.

Spherical aberration

Spherical aberration is caused because the lens is round and the film or image sensor is flat. Light entering the edge of the lens is more severely refracted than light entering the center of the lens. This results in a blurred image, and also causes flare (non-image forming internal reflections). Stopping down the lens minimizes spherical aberration and flare, but introduces diffraction.


Astigmatism in a lens causes a point in the subject to be reproduced as a line in the image. The effect becomes worse towards the corner of the image. Stopping down the lens has very little effect.


Coma in a lens causes a circular shape in the subject to be reproduced as an oval shape in the image. Stopping down the lens has almost no effect.

Curvature of field

Curvature of field is the inability of a lens to produce a flat image of a flat subject. The image is formed instead on a curved surface. If the center of the image is in focus, the edges are out of focus and vice versa. Stopping down the lens has a limited effect.


Distortion is the inability of a lens to capture lines as straight across the entire image area. Barrel distortion causes straight lines at the edges of the frame to bow toward the center of the image, producing a barrel shape. Pincushion distortion causes straight lines at the edges of the frame to curve in toward the lens axis. Distortion, whether barrel or pincushion type, is caused by differences in magnification; stopping down the lens has no effect at all.

The term "distortion" is also sometimes used instead of the term "aberration". In this case, other types of optical aberrations may also be meant, not necessarily geometric distortion.


Classically, light is thought of as always traveling in straight lines, but in reality, light waves tend to bend around nearby barriers, spreading out in the process. This phenomenon is known as diffraction and occurs when a light wave passes by a corner or through an opening. Diffraction plays a paramount role in limiting the resolving power of any lens.


Doublet is a lens design comprised of two elements grouped together. Sometimes the two elements are cemented together, and other times they are separated by an air gap. Examples of this type of lens include achromatic close-up lenses.

Dynamic range

Dynamic range is the maximum range of tones, from darkest shadows to brightest highlights, that can be produced by a device or perceived in an image. Also called tonal range.

Resolving power

Resolving power is the ability of a lens, photographic emulsion or imaging sensor to distinguish fine detail. Resolving power is expressed in terms of lines per millimeter that are distinctly recorded in the final image.


Vignetting is the darkening of the corners of an image relative to the center of the image. There are three types of vignetting: optical, mechanical, and natural vignetting.

Optical vignetting is caused by the physical dimensions of a multi-element lens. Rear elements are shaded by elements in front of them, which reduces the effective lens opening for off-axis incident light. The result is a gradual decrease of the light intensity towards the image periphery. Optical vignetting is sensitive to the aperture and can be completely cured by stopping down the lens. Two or three stops are usually sufficient.

Mechanical vignetting occurs when light beams are partially blocked by external objects such as thick or stacked filters, secondary lenses, and improper lens hoods.

Natural vignetting (also known as natural illumination falloff) is not due to the blocking of light rays. The falloff is approximated by the "cosine fourth" law of illumination falloff. Wide-angle rangefinder designs are particularly prone to natural vignetting. Stopping down the lens cannot cure it.


Bright shapes or lack of contrast caused when light is scattered by the surface of the lens or reflected off the interior surfaces of the lens barrel. This is most often seen when the lens is pointed toward the sun or another bright light source. Flare can be minimized by using anti-reflection coatings, light baffles, or a lens hood.


Glowing patches of light that appear in a photograph due to lens flare.

Retrofocus design

Design with negative lens group(s) positioned in front of the diaphragm and positive lens group(s) positioned at the rear of the diaphragm. This provides a short focal length with a long back focus or lens-to-film distance, allowing for movement of the reflex mirror in SLR cameras. Sometimes called an inverted telephoto lens.


A photographic lens completely corrected for the three main optical aberrations: spherical aberration, coma, and astigmatism.

By the mid-20th century, the vast majority of lenses were close to being anastigmatic, so most manufacturers stopped including this characteristic in lens names and/or descriptions and focused on advertising other features (anti-reflection coating, for example).

Rectilinear design

Design that does not introduce significant distortion, especially ultra-wide angle lenses that preserve straight lines and do not curve them (unlike a fisheye lens, for instance).

Focus shift

A change in the position of the plane of optimal focus, generally due to a change in focal length when using a zoom lens, and in some lenses, with a change in aperture.


The amount of light that passes through a lens without being either absorbed by the glass or being reflected by glass/air surfaces.

Modulation Transfer Function (MTF)

When optical designers attempt to compare the performance of optical systems, a commonly used measure is the modulation transfer function (MTF).

The components of MTF are:

The MTF of a lens is a measurement of its ability to transfer contrast at a particular resolution from the object to the image. In other words, MTF is a way to incorporate resolution and contrast into a single specification.

Knowing the MTF curves of each photographic lens and camera sensor within a system allows a designer to make the appropriate selection when optimizing for a particular resolution.

Veiling glare

Lens flare that causes loss of contrast over part or all of the image.

Anti-reflection coating

When light enters or exits an uncoated lens approximately 5% of the light is reflected back at each lens-air boundary due to the difference in refractive index. This reflected light causes flare and ghosting, which results in deterioration of image quality. To counter this, a vapor-deposited coating that reduces light reflection is applied to the lens surface. Early coatings consisted of a single thin film with the correct refractive index differences to cancel out reflections. Multi-layer coatings, introduced in the early 1970s, are made up of several such films.

Benefits of anti-reflection coating:

Circular fisheye

Produces a 180° angle of view in all directions (horizontal, vertical and diagonal).

The image circle of the lens is inscribed in the image frame.

Diagonal (full-frame) fisheye

Covers the entire image frame. For this reason diagonal fisheye lenses are often called full-frame fisheyes.

Extension ring

Extension rings can be used singly or in combination to vary the reproduction ratio of lenses. They are mounted between the camera body and the lens. As a rule, the effect becomes stronger the shorter the focal length of the lens in use, and the longer the focal length of the extension ring.

View camera

A large-format camera with a ground-glass viewfinder at the image plane for viewing and focusing. The photographer must stick his head under a cloth hood in order to see the image projected on the ground glass. Because of their 4x5-inch (or larger) negatives, these cameras can produce extremely high-quality results. View cameras also usually support movements.

135 cartridge-loaded film

43.27 24 36
  • Introduced: 1934
  • Frame size: 36 × 24mm
  • Aspect ratio: 3:2
  • Diagonal: 43.27mm
  • Area: 864mm2
  • Double perforated
  • 8 perforations per frame

120 roll film

71.22 44 56
  • Introduced: 1901
  • Frame size: 56 × 44mm
  • Aspect ratio: 11:14
  • Diagonal: 71.22mm
  • Area: 2464mm2
  • Unperforated

120 roll film

79.2 56 56
  • Introduced: 1901
  • Frame size: 56 × 56mm
  • Aspect ratio: 1:1
  • Diagonal: 79.2mm
  • Area: 3136mm2
  • Unperforated

120 roll film

89.64 56 70
  • Introduced: 1901
  • Frame size: 70 × 56mm
  • Aspect ratio: 5:4
  • Diagonal: 89.64mm
  • Area: 3920mm2
  • Unperforated

220 roll film

71.22 44 56
  • Introduced: 1965
  • Frame size: 56 × 44mm
  • Aspect ratio: 11:14
  • Diagonal: 71.22mm
  • Area: 2464mm2
  • Unperforated
  • Double the length of 120 roll film

220 roll film

79.2 56 56
  • Introduced: 1965
  • Frame size: 56 × 56mm
  • Aspect ratio: 1:1
  • Diagonal: 79.2mm
  • Area: 3136mm2
  • Unperforated
  • Double the length of 120 roll film

220 roll film

89.64 56 70
  • Introduced: 1965
  • Frame size: 70 × 56mm
  • Aspect ratio: 5:4
  • Diagonal: 89.64mm
  • Area: 3920mm2
  • Unperforated
  • Double the length of 120 roll film

Shutter speed ring with "F" setting

The "F" setting disengages the leaf shutter and is set when using only the focal plane shutter in the camera body.

Catch for disengaging cross-coupling

The shutter and diaphragm settings are cross-coupled so that the diaphragm opens to a corresponding degree when faster shutter speeds are selected. The cross-coupling can be disengaged at the press of a catch.

Cross-coupling button

With the cross-coupling button depressed speed/aperture combinations can be altered without changing the Exposure Value setting.

M & X sync

The shutter is fully synchronized for M- and X-settings so that you can work with flash at all shutter speeds.

In M-sync, the shutter closes the flash-firing circuit slightly before it is fully open to catch the flash at maximum intensity. The M-setting is used for Class M flash bulbs.

In X-sync, the flash takes place when the shutter is fully opened. The X-setting is used for electronic flash.

X sync

The shutter is fully synchronized for X-setting so that you can work with flash at all shutter speeds.

In X-sync, the flash takes place when the shutter is fully opened. The X-setting is used for electronic flash.

Unable to follow the link

You are already on the page dedicated to this lens.

Cannot perform comparison

Cannot compare the lens to itself.

Image stabilizer

A technology used for reducing or even eliminating the effects of camera shake. Gyro sensors inside the lens detect camera shake and pass the data to a microcomputer. Then an image stabilization group of elements controlled by the microcomputer moves inside the lens and compensates camera shake in order to keep the image static on the imaging sensor or film.

The technology allows to increase the shutter speed by several stops and shoot handheld in such lighting conditions and at such focal lengths where without image stabilizer you have to use tripod, decrease the shutter speed and/or increase the ISO setting which can lead to blurry and noisy images.

Original name

Lens name as indicated on the lens barrel (usually on the front ring). With lenses from film era, may vary slightly from batch to batch.


Format refers to the shape and size of film or image sensor.

35mm is the common name of the 36x24mm film format or image sensor format. It has an aspect ratio of 3:2, and a diagonal measurement of approximately 43mm. The name originates with the total width of the 135 film which was the primary medium of the format prior to the invention of the full frame digital SLR. Historically the 35mm format was sometimes called small format to distinguish it from the medium and large formats.

APS-C is an image sensor format approximately equivalent in size to the film negatives of 25.1x16.7mm with an aspect ratio of 3:2.

Medium format is a film format or image sensor format larger than 36x24mm (35mm) but smaller than 4x5in (large format).

Angle of view

Angle of view describes the angular extent of a given scene that is imaged by a camera. It is used interchangeably with the more general term field of view.

As the focal length changes, the angle of view also changes. The shorter the focal length (eg 18mm), the wider the angle of view. Conversely, the longer the focal length (eg 55mm), the smaller the angle of view.

A camera's angle of view depends not only on the lens, but also on the sensor. Imaging sensors are sometimes smaller than 35mm film frame, and this causes the lens to have a narrower angle of view than with 35mm film, by a certain factor for each sensor (called the crop factor).

This website does not use the angles of view provided by lens manufacturers, but calculates them automatically by the following formula: 114.6 * arctan (21.622 / CF * FL),


CF – crop-factor of a sensor,
FL – focal length of a lens.


A lens mount is an interface — mechanical and often also electrical — between a camera body and a lens.

A lens mount may be a screw-threaded type, a bayonet-type, or a breech-lock type. Modern camera lens mounts are of the bayonet type, because the bayonet mechanism precisely aligns mechanical and electrical features between lens and body, unlike screw-threaded mounts.

Lens mounts of competing manufacturers (Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony etc.) are always incompatible. In addition to the mechanical and electrical interface variations, the flange focal distance can also be different.

The flange focal distance (FFD) is the distance from the mechanical rear end surface of the lens mount to the focal plane.

Lens construction

Lens construction – a specific arrangement of elements and groups that make up the optical design, including type and size of elements, type of used materials etc.

Element - an individual piece of glass which makes up one component of a photographic lens. Photographic lenses are nearly always built up of multiple such elements.

Group – a cemented together pieces of glass which form a single unit or an individual piece of glass. The advantage is that there is no glass-air surfaces between cemented together pieces of glass, which reduces reflections.

Focal length

The focal length is the factor that determines the size of the image reproduced on the focal plane, picture angle which covers the area of the subject to be photographed, depth of field, etc.


The largest opening or stop at which a lens can be used is referred to as the speed of the lens. The larger the maximum aperture is, the faster the lens is considered to be. Lenses that offer a large maximum aperture are commonly referred to as fast lenses, and lenses with smaller maximum aperture are regarded as slow.

In low-light situations, having a wider maximum aperture means that you can shoot at a faster shutter speed or work at a lower ISO, or both.

Closest focusing distance

The minimum distance from the focal plane (film or sensor) to the subject where the lens is still able to focus.

Closest working distance

The distance from the front edge of the lens to the subject at the maximum magnification.

Magnification ratio

Determines how large the subject will appear in the final image. Magnification is expressed as a ratio. For example, a magnification ratio of 1:1 means that the image of the subject formed on the film or sensor will be the same size as the subject in real life. For this reason, a 1:1 ratio is often called "life-size".

Manual focus override in autofocus mode

Allows to perform final focusing manually after the camera has locked the focus automatically. Note that you don't have to switch camera and/or lens to manual focus mode.

Manual focus override in autofocus mode

Allows to perform final focusing manually after the camera has locked the focus automatically. Note that you don't have to switch camera and/or lens to manual focus mode.

Electronic manual focus override is performed in the following way: half-press the shutter button, wait until the camera has finished the autofocusing and then focus manually without releasing the shutter button using the focusing ring.

Manual diaphragm

The diaphragm must be stopped down manually by rotating the detent aperture ring.

Preset diaphragm

The lens has two rings, one is for pre-setting, while the other is for normal diaphragm adjustment. The first ring must be set at the desired aperture, the second ring then should be fully opened for focusing, and turned back for stop down to the pre-set value.

Semi-automatic diaphragm

The lens features spring mechanism in the diaphragm, triggered by the shutter release, which stops down the diaphragm to the pre-set value. The spring needs to be reset manually after each exposure to re-open diaphragm to its maximum value.

Automatic diaphragm

The camera automatically closes the diaphragm down during the shutter operation. On completion of the exposure, the diaphragm re-opens to its maximum value.

Fixed diaphragm

The aperture setting is fixed at F/ on this lens, and cannot be adjusted.

Number of blades

As a general rule, the more blades that are used to create the aperture opening in the lens, the rounder the out-of-focus highlights will be.

Some lenses are designed with curved diaphragm blades, so the roundness of the aperture comes not from the number of blades, but from their shape. However, the fewer blades the diaphragm has, the more difficult it is to form a circle, regardless of rounded edges.

At maximum aperture, the opening will be circular regardless of the number of blades.


Excluding case or pouch, caps and other detachable accessories (lens hood, close-up adapter, tripod adapter etc.).

Maximum diameter x Length

Excluding case or pouch, caps and other detachable accessories (lens hood, close-up adapter, tripod adapter etc.).

For lenses with collapsible design, the length is indicated for the working (retracted) state.

Weather sealing

A rubber material which is inserted in between each externally exposed part (manual focus and zoom rings, buttons, switch panels etc.) to ensure it is properly sealed against dust and moisture.

Lenses that accept front mounted filters typically do not have gaskets behind the filter mount. It is recommended to use a filter for complete weather resistance when desired.

Fluorine coating

Helps keep lenses clean by reducing the possibility of dust and dirt adhering to the lens and by facilitating cleaning should the need arise. Applied to the outer surface of the front and/or rear lens elements over multi-coatings.


Lens filters are accessories that can protect lenses from dirt and damage, enhance colors, minimize glare and reflections, and add creative effects to images.

Lens hood

A lens hood or lens shade is a device used on the end of a lens to block the sun or other light source in order to prevent glare and lens flare. Flare occurs when stray light strikes the front element of a lens and then bounces around within the lens. This stray light often comes from very bright light sources, such as the sun, bright studio lights, or a bright white background.

The geometry of the lens hood can vary from a plain cylindrical or conical section to a more complex shape, sometimes called a petal, tulip, or flower hood. This allows the lens hood to block stray light with the higher portions of the lens hood, while allowing more light into the corners of the image through the lowered portions of the hood.

Lens hoods are more prominent in long focus lenses because they have a smaller viewing angle than that of wide-angle lenses. For wide angle lenses, the length of the hood cannot be as long as those for telephoto lenses, as a longer hood would enter the wider field of view of the lens.

Lens hoods are often designed to fit onto the matching lens facing either forward, for normal use, or backwards, so that the hood may be stored with the lens without occupying much additional space. In addition, lens hoods can offer some degree of physical protection for the lens due to the hood extending farther than the lens itself.


Teleconverters increase the effective focal length of lenses. They also usually maintain the closest focusing distance of lenses, thus increasing the magnification significantly. A lens combined with a teleconverter is normally smaller, lighter and cheaper than a "direct" telephoto lens of the same focal length and speed.

Teleconverters are a convenient way of enhancing telephoto capability, but it comes at a cost − reduced maximum aperture. Also, since teleconverters magnify every detail in the image, they logically also magnify residual aberrations of the lens.

Lens caps

Scratched lens surfaces can spoil the definition and contrast of even the finest lenses. Lens covers are the best and most inexpensive protection available against dust, moisture and abrasion. Safeguard lens elements - both front and rear - whenever the lens is not in use.