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Definition: lens

The glass or plastic elements that focus light onto analog film or a digital sensor in a still or video camera. Lens quality is just as important in digital cameras as it was in Daguerreotype imaging of the mid-1800s (see image). See digital camera and kit lens.

Lenses Were Always Important
The lens has always been one of the most important components of a camera, and this lens and camera were crafted in the late 1800s.