Most non-pro cameras come with one or two kit lenses. They are standard range zooms most of the times and some actually deliver good image quality. Prime lenses on the other hand, have been around a lot longer than kit zooms. Many beginning photographers believe it's harder to work with a prime lens, and that's why they stay away from them.
Here are 5 reasons why we believe you should have at least one prime lens in your camera bag.
Bokeh, or background blur is directly related to how wide the aperture is. To be more specific, an f 2.8 lens will produce more bokeh than an f4 or f5.6 aperture. With that said, the design of prime lenses enables them to have wider apertures and thus produce that good looking, creamy bokeh that everyone loves.
The fact that prime lenses have wider aperture also makes them perfect for low light conditions. Professional zoom lenses have a constant aperture of f2.8. Some professional prime lenses are as bright as an f1, which makes them brighter than the human eye.
Because they have to incorporate more than one focal length, zoom lenses tend to be bigger and heavier. While prime lenses may also have considerable weight to them, especially professional portrait lenses, they are still smaller than pro zooms. You might not think of this as a big advantage at first glance, but trust me, when you have to lug gear around all day, you will want to make everything as light as possible.
4. Image quality
The difference in image quality between prime lenses and professional zooms has been greatly reduced in the past two decades. Pro zooms are better than ever, yet still a good prime lens will offer the best image quality, almost without exception. Its things like sharpness, contrast and color rendition that make the difference.
5. New skills
The first time you will use a prime lens, you will feel very limited and slowed down. Because you only have one focal length, you have to do the zooming with your legs. Nowadays when everything is designed to make our lives easier, such an effort might seem like an outrage. Well, it's this kind of effort that will get you thinking more about composition and will turn you into a better photographer.
If you're considering buying a prime lens, you should have a go at it with something affordable, just so you can verify that everything written here is true. The most affordable and common primes are 50mm f1.8 lenses. They usually have an unbeatable price to quality ration and they are great options for learning photographers.
After you get the hang of it, you can look at macro lenses, long telezooms or pro portrait primes.