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If you’re newer to filmmaking, chances are you have no idea where to start when it comes to camera lens rental. You’ve probably had endless questions such as what focal length do I need? What brand lens is best for me? Will a Nikon lens rental or a Canon lens rental be best for me?

If you’ve wondered about any of these prior-stated questions, we’re here to help. Eleven04, as one of Chicago’s best places to rent lenses, knows a thing or two that will definitely be beneficial to your lens rental search.

Here is our guide to renting camera lenses in Chicago:

Focal Length

Before you even dive into what brand is best for your indie shoot, you need to establish your needs. Depending on what you’re shooting, you’ll need a lens with a specified focal length - focal length meaning the amount of zoom the lens will be. In simple terms, the higher the focal length, which is the number attached to the lens name, the more zoomed in the camera will be.

Here’s a quick rundown of lens focal lengths you’ll encounter on you Chicago lens rental search:

  • 105-300mm Lens

    A lens of this focal length is also called a Telephoto lens. These zoom lenses offer a lot of reach and are great for shooting wildlife, sport, or any situation that requires good compression and shallow depth of field to your image

  • 70-105mm Lens

    This lens is the next step down from the Telephoto lens and is called a Short Telephoto lens. Similar to the longer Telephoto, these lenses offer similar benefits but often with a significant reduction of size and wider field of view..

  • 35-70mm Lens

    These focal lenses are special because it is the closest to what our eyes see. It offers natural and everyday look to your image. It is great for shooting in a street setting and shots of everyday dialogue between people.

  • 24-35mm Lens

    Now, this is where we start to get into wider angle lenses. This lens called the Wide Angle lens shoots quite wide. It’s great for capturing a realistic feel while preserving context, allowing you to feel as if the viewers are in on the action. These lenses are often used by journalists, vloggers, or skateboarders.

  • 14-24mm

    This is just about as wide as it gets. The Ultra-Wide angle lens is great for capturing events or architecture. It’s often the ideal option to provide the context of the location before other sequences.

Lens Brands

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Every major camera brand offers a wide selection of brands. At Eleven04, we rent out a variety of lenses from different brands such as:

  • Canon

  • Schnieder

  • Fujinon

  • Zeiss

Each brand holds it’s own strengths and weaknesses. When deciding on a brand for your film project, you’ll need to do a bit of research. Answer these questions when deciding on a brand:

  • What’s my price range?

  • Does this brand’s style fits the vision I have for my films?

  • Does the lens mount works with the camera I want to use?

These are just a few of the many questions you’ll run into when selecting a lens for your next film project. Just be sure to ask around and do a bit of research to find your best fit.

Best Place to Rent Lenses in Chicago

Chicago is a filmmaker’s heaven and within that means that there are endless options for lens rental in Chicago. Sifting through them can be time-consuming but luckily, you’ve wandered upon the best lens rental in Chicago already!

Eleven04 offers a wide selection of over 30 lens rental options. Ranging from kit lenses to ultra-wide high-quality cinema lenses, you’re sure to find your solution with Eleven04. Browse our selection today to end your Chicago lens rental search!