5 Cheap Tilt-Shift Lenses Anyone Can Afford
If you’re not a professional photographer (or somebody with deep pockets), you’ll quickly notice that there aren’t that many lenses on the market, and most of them aren’t cheap.
Luckily there are still some tilt shift lenses that are great and on a budget. Here are 5 affordable tilt-shift lenses or substitutes that allow you to achieve the same effect as with a professional tilt-shift lens.
Though this hasn’t the typical tilt-shift lens look and feel, it’s perfect for every amateur photographer who has some still some extra space to fill in his bag. It’s one of the cheapest lenses on the market, which is noticeable in the quality compared to more expensive tilt-shift lenses. Nonetheless, it does a pretty good job.
Though it’s easy to learn how it works (there are no buttons, you’ll have to manually look for the perfect spot), it does take some time to completely master it. But that’s part of the fun, right?
The Spark is a 50 mm lens with a fixed aperture of f5.6 and it does remarkably well in low light. It’s only when you start using lower shutter speeds that you’ll experience some difficulties with getting sharp images. The size, weight (85 grams) and durability of the lens make you able to take it with you almost everywhere you go.
Don’t expect to get 100% sharp photo’s all of the time. It takes time and patience to master it, but once you get the hang of it, you’ve got yourself a new way of getting creative!
Conclusion: If you want to learn tilt-shift photography, but don’t want to spend thousands of dollars on a lens, this is the one you should try out.
Also not a real tilt-shift lens, the Lensbaby Composer Pro is another 50 mm lens that comes with a maximum aperture of f2.5, making it perfectly suitable for low light conditions.
With an aperture of this size, you get a decent amount of dense “bokeh”, which is essential to you want to get that famous “miniature” effect of tilt-shift lenses. The lower aperture comes with a somewhat higher price, but it’s still far bellow the price range of other tilt shift lenses.
Just like the Lensbaby Spark, it’s an easy to use lens, with a low learning curve. The aperture itself is controlled by a ring on the front of the optic and a refined metal ball design allows you to smoothly adjust focus. Mastering and finding the sweet spot takes some practice, but more than worth it!
Conclusion: Want to have a cheap tilt-shift lens with a lot of “bokeh”? Look no further!
If you look for a more professional option, this tilt-shift lens from Arsat offers a great deal. Made with high-quality precision type mechanisms, it gives you all the tools you need to change and manipulate the landscape exactly the way you want it.
The lens can be shifted up to 11 mm from its original position, can be rotated 360 degrees and locks at 12 different angles. This makes it a perfect starters lens for architectural photography. It allows you to have complete control of the perspective of the picture and lets you adjust the perception the way you want it.
The Arsat 80mm f/2.8 enables you to have more control over the depth of field with your aperture while still having perfectly clear pictures that are in focus. It’s relatively easy to find the sweet spot (even with dynamic shots) once you master the correct handling, but the learning process may be a little longer compared to the “amateurish” Lensbaby tilt-shift lenses.
Conclusion: if you’re looking to try out a good quality tilt-shift lens and want to use it on a (semi) professional level without having to pay too much, this is the one you need to give a shot.
This tilt-shift lens offers a great way to get started with tilt-shift photography if you have a small budget. With a maximum aperture of f/2, it’s a great lens for low light conditions. Though it shoots in beautiful pictures, it takes a while to master.
It may feel a bit hard to combine the tilt and shift functions together with the aperture and focus ring. That’s why this is a lens that is more suitable for static shots, as it takes more tries to find the sweet spot.
Though it shoots in beautiful pictures, it takes a while to master. It may feel a bit hard to combine the tilt and shift functions together with the aperture and focus ring. This is a lens that is more suitable for static shots, as it takes more tries to find the sweet spot.
Just as the Arsat 80 mm f/2.8, this lens can be shifted up to 11 mm from its original position, can be rotated 360 degrees and locks at 12 different angles.
Conclusion: A perfect match between budget and quality, you get more than you asked for.
If you are serious about tilt-shift photography, consider the Rokinon TSL24M-S. With its build in stabilizing options, it’s not only perfect for tilt-shift photography but can also be used for macro photography, dynamic shots and more.
Though the maximum aperture is only f/3.5, it creates a remarkably pleasant bokeh. The focus ring feels natural and is a big plus should you ever consider to use the lens for filming. This is a qualitative lens to work with, which allows you to really play with and control the depth of field.
With a focal distance of 24 mm, it shoots wider than previous lenses, allowing you to create that “miniature effect” a lot quicker. One you get the handle of this lens, it’s very easy to start manipulating photos and start getting creative. The possibilities are endless!
Conclusion: If you’re looking for a lens that can be used for more than just the tilt shift effect, then this lens from Rokinon offers the full package!