A long lens will produce the best quality—but can cost thousands. On a budget? Try these workarounds.
1. Crop it. Though resolution will suffer, you can shoot wide and crop in for a post-production zoom job. 2. Rent a lens. Specialty camera stores and online vendors lend out their fleets for $20 to $40 per day. 3. Check your camera. A crop sensor multiplies the focal length, usually by a factor of 1.3 to 1.6. If your camera has one, you can get away with a smaller lens. Downside: grainier photos. 4. Add a lens extender. Stick one of these ($100 to $ 500) under your lens instead of buying a whole new one. You’ll lose some quality but save space, weight, and money.