F/4 vs. F/2.8: What’s the Difference and Why Does?

F/4 vs. F/2.8

Framing and focusing your camera shots always decide the overall quality of your photographs, especially if you are into landscape or nature photography. While f-stops are a term generally used to explain aperture, ISO, and shutter speed in photography, it is also crucial to understand the sensor size and elements inside a lens in order to understand what makes a fast aperture lens desirable. In this guide, We will explain in detail F/4 vs. F/2.8: What’s the Difference and Why Does?

What is an F-Stop?

F-stop, or f-number, is the ratio of a lens’s focal length to its diameter. It is used to determine the diameter of the lens opening, which determines how much light passes through it. The higher the number, the smaller the hole and the less light can pass through it.

In photography, f-stops are used to control how much light gets into your camera. The larger the aperture (opening), the more light can enter your camera. This makes it easier for you as a photographer to take pictures in low light situations or even at night with a flash if you want more depth of field than what would be possible with a small aperture.

What’s the difference between F/2.8 and F/4?

Here is a quick comparison of the main differences between F/2.8 and F/4:

Low-light performance

The aperture is the size of the opening in a lens that lets light in. The bigger the aperture, the more light can enter. The aperture controls the depth of field (how much of your image is in focus) and also affects exposure (how bright or dark your photo will be).

The aperture scale is F/1 through F/32 for full-frame cameras (35mm film) and 1.4 through 32 for APS-C sensors. For example, an F2.8 lens has a larger aperture than an F4 lens so it lets in more light and makes it easier to focus on your subject in low-light situations.

The lower number means a bigger aperture — so F2.8 is larger than F4 — which means more light enters through the lens at any given time allowing you to shoot with less noise in low-light settings

Depth of field

You can control the depth of field in your image by choosing a smaller aperture (larger f-number). The smaller the f-number, the greater the depth of field.

The difference between F/2.8 and F/4 is that with F/2.8, you can achieve a narrow depth of field. That means only a small portion of your subject will be in focus. This can be useful if you want to highlight one part of your subject over another part, or if you want to have a sense of mystery about what exactly is going on in an image.

With F/4, you have a wider depth of field (more area in focus). This makes it easier to capture everything you see without having to worry about whether someone’s eyes are in focus or not!


The cost of a lens is directly related to its aperture. Lenses with larger apertures tend to be more expensive than lenses with smaller apertures.


The F/2.8 also has a longer focal length, which means you can get closer to your subject without getting so much distortion from the wide angle of view that you get with shorter focal length lenses like the 18-55mm kit lens. In general, this makes it easier to get more flattering shots of people, particularly because you don’t have to stand so far away from them when using this lens compared to other options like the 18-55mm kit lens or even the 16-85mm zoom.

If you typically shoot portraits or photos where people feature prominently in your frame then this may be an important feature for you since being able to get close enough without having to use a telephoto zoom allows for more intimacy in your images and can help create more flattering portraits of your subjects.


The main difference between F/2.8 and F/4 lenses is the speed of the lens. Speed refers to the maximum aperture of a lens – how large it can open up to let light through. The larger the maximum aperture, the faster your lens will be in low-light situations.


Larger apertures are generally considered better for sharpness because they allow more light to hit your sensor and get recorded as detail—but only if you have a fast enough shutter speed to avoid blurring it all away. The reason why large apertures are so important for sharpness is because they allow more light into the camera than small ones do. This means that you don’t need to use such long shutter speeds when taking photos with a large aperture, which means less chance of blur from camera shake or subject movement during the exposure time.


The difference between F/2.8 and F/4 is most clearly seen in noise levels. By increasing the aperture by one stop, you are letting in twice as much light, which means that your camera has to use twice as much ISO to compensate for the same exposure level (but you can use slower shutter speeds). If you look at images taken at night or in low light, you will find that images taken at f/2.8 are generally noisier than those taken at f/4 because of this increased ISO setting.


How many f-stops are 2.8 and 4?

2.8 is 2 stops wider than 4 (2.8/4). 2.8 has a larger opening, so it lets in more light than 4. It is a brighter lens. F-stops are expressed as a ratio of the focal length to the diameter of the aperture: “f/2” means “the focal length divided by two”, or the diameter of the aperture divided by 2; “f/4” means “the focal length divided by four”, or the diameter of the aperture divided by 4; etc.

Is 2.8 fast enough for low light?

The main issue with a 2.8 lens is that it’s not fast enough to let in enough light to shoot in low-light situations. A lens with an aperture of f/1.4 would be much better than a lens with an aperture of f/2.8 for low-light photography.

Is a higher f lens better?

The higher the f-number, the smaller the aperture, and the more light that can come in. So a higher f-number is definitely better if you’re shooting in low light or at night.

But a lower f-number is better for getting more depth of field and having things in focus. If you want to shoot landscapes where everything from the front to the back of your photo is in focus, then you want a lower f-number.

What f-stop to use for headshots?

The f-stop you use can be a bit of a personal choice. You can go with something in the middle (f/8 or f/11) or even the widest aperture possible (f/1.4). The reason you may want to go with an aperture that is wide open (smaller number) is because it will result in a shallow depth of field, which draws attention to your subject and makes them stand out from their background. However, if you are shooting outdoors and want more bokeh (or blur) around your subject then you can open up your aperture as well.

Is f4 aperture good?

F4 is a good aperture opening because it is small enough to make the background out of focus and yet large enough to allow adequate light in for the photo.

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