I tried forEVER to get a decent shot of some birds today. All I've got is a point and shoot (right now, saving up for my first DSLR). So I've got a fixed lens but it does allow me to zoom as it has a 12x optical zoom and on the lens itself it tells me 36mm-432mm. I guess I don't really understand lens length meanings. I figure with a 36mm-432 mm it means it can go from close to far. This first one I was maybe 30 feet from. This second one I was even closer, around 15 feet away and I still couldn't really get up close and personal with the photo. This was about as far as I could zoom in without it become really, really blurry.