All about aperture

Aperture refers to the hole in the lens that light travels through, from the outside through to the camera sensor. You can adjust aperture through closing and opening this hole.

An Aperture value can be refered to as f-stop. It’s prominent because of the f before the number. f/1.4 is a larger aperture than f/16 that’s because its measured as a fraction.You will see aperture on your camera screen either like f/2.5 or just f 2.5. Just look for the f it means aperture!

The largest and smallest aperture you can set depends on the lens, more expensive lens most likely means you can do from f1.6 through to f/22 whilst a cheaper or kit lens float from something like f/3.5 to f/20.

Aside from changing exposure with more or less light coming into the sensor aperture is the depth of field a shot obtains. Larger aperture means a shallow depth of field which is more focus on the foreground and blurring of the background (bokeh). Whilst having a small f-stop makes the whole scene be in focus.

There is no right or wrong aperture, it is simply what suits your style/shot/scenery

Lets look at two harsh factors at each end of the aperture scale:

Large aperture

Larger means more open and a lower f-stop. f/1.4, f/2, f/2.4 are at the end of letting in a lot of light! This will also provide a lot of background blur, so it is good for focusing on an object (like product photography).

Small aperture

Smaller is an almost shut aperture, making the image obtain less natural light and focusing on the overall scenery. f/16 to f/20 are at the small end for aperture, having small aperture is good for landscape photography.

A middle point for aperture is as you would expect, an all rounded image this is fine for most of the time but to get special shots and to put focus on your subject you will need to go the large f-stop way.

aperturesizedepth of field
f/1.6Very LargeThin (focus)
f/11SmallLarge (Wide)