There are nearly 200 adapters that let you mount lenses on interchangeable-lens cameras they weren't designed for.
You've invested heavily in a particular brand of DSLR or MILC, and you see a lens you'd love to use, but alas, it is made by a competing camera maker, and is only available in that company's camera mount which is not compatible with your camera. Is that the end of the story? No!
There are nearly 200 adapters that let you mount Canon lenses on Nikon cameras, Pentax lenses on Olympus cameras, and so on. While there are nearly two dozen companies that make such adapters and are featured in the Adorama Lens to Camera Adapters department, Novoflex offers the largest variety of choices, with 59 adapters as of this writing.
Minolta 50mm f/1.7 Rokkor lens (available at the Adorama Used department) on a brand new Olympus OM-D: Impossible? Not if you are willing to give up some features and invest in the appropriate Novoflex adapter.
The big gotcha with almost all lens-camera adapters is that they are simple, mechanical affairs with no sensors, and therefore do not allow the lens and camera to communicate electronically. That means focus and aperture settings must be done manually. Exposure choices are limited to manual or aperture-priority metering. Aperture is usually controlled via a mechanical aperture ring that is built into the adapter if the lens lacks an aperture control ring. However, all of the adapters allow you to focus to infinity.
If you're a newbie, this may not be the best choice for you. However, if you understand manual exposure, this opens up all kinds of options.
For instance, lets say you have a bunch of old Minolta AF lenses, which you can't sell on eBaby because the aren't worth much. And, let's say you recently bought a Nikon 1. Well, you're in luck! The Novoflex Minolta AF to Nikon 1 adapter lets you shoot away.
More commonly, you can breathe new life into your old lenses for discontinued cameras. If you've been keeping your old Pentax screw-mount, Canon FD, Contax/Yashica or Minolta MD/MC film-era lenses hidden away in a closet, you may be able to buy an adapter that will allow you to use them with your current DSLR or MILC.
How about a Nikon 28mm f/1.8 G lens on a Sony NEX-7? Yup, there's an adapter for that—and many other intriguing combinations!
But these adapters are not limited to old lenses. You can buy adapters that let you use 35mm- or APS-format DSLR lenses on smaller-sensor MILCs such as the Pentax Q, Nikon 1 or Micro Four Thirds cameras. That expands the versatility of both your camera and lens systems. Just keep in mind that your smaller sensor camera will turn your short tele zoom into a long tele zoom and your wide-angle lenses into normal or even slight telephoto lenses.
Related MILC reviews on the Adorama Learning Center:
Here's the complete (as of now) list of Novoflex adapters, listed by lens mount to camera body. Adorama prices range from $124.99 to $349.95, depending on lens and camera configuration.
How about slapping a Pentax 300mm lens on a Nikon 1 V2. Keeping in mind the V2's smaller sensor size this could actually allow you to shoot detailed images of the moon!
(Nikon adapters: Check individual specifications to see if adapter will work with G or non-G lenses)
As you can see, there are many ways to adapt and give your old lenses new life on the latest DSLRs and especially smaller-sensor MILCs. Do you see a combo that works for you here?