If you obsess over even the tiniest speck of grease or dust on your camera lens, then you should probably avoid this video, which shows a poor Canon 50mm ƒ1.8 standard prime being tortured. And I do mean it when I say “tortured”: Evil photographer Richard Choi really gets elemental on that front element. The surprise? The lens (almost) doesn’t feel a thing.
I keep a UV filter over my lens, and I keep a lens cap over that. But now I wonder why I bother. We thought that the iPhone 5’s sapphire glass lens was tough and scratch proof, but the big chunk of glass at the front of many SLR lenses seems to be equally abuse-proof, as Richard proves with all manner of sharp and blunt objects, as he whacks them into the poor little lens.
The video even lets a lot of the action take place off-camera to build tension. Well, either that or Richard just couldn’t be bothered to but out the boring in-between parts where he rummages in his toolkit for the next torture implement.
A couple of things to note. First, Richard performed this test on an already-dead lens. And second, don’t try this at home. Kidding! You should totally try this at home, and post the video on YouTube. Just don’t come running to me if it all goes wrong (warning: It will all go wrong).
Between this and my stylish leather camera case, I’m now a lot less paranoid about breaking my camera. I’m worried about my hammer though…