Elements and Groups in lens: What does that mean?

asked on February 7, 2018
Example:-
Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8 has 14 elements and 11 groups
Canon 70-200mm f/4L IS has 20 elements and 15 groups

Amit Kumar Srivastava

answered on February 7, 2018

In any lens, elements are the specific lens pieces used and how are they arranged to obtain a particular feature, the arrangement is the group. Lenses pieces are usually arranged in groups. In lens, say if it is a zoom lens, it will have more number of elements and groups, where as for a prime lens, it will have less number of groups and elements. 

Usually it is termed as the more number of groups and elements, the better the quality but it is not always true. Lens quality also depends on the type of glass, design mechanism, manufacturing process of the lens. So for a particular focal length, a prime lens would be better than the zoom lens.

Prime lenses usually perform better than zoom lenses.

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