What do the aperture labels on lenses mean?

Started Oct 10, 2012 | Discussions thread
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deanfuller Regular Member • Posts: 105
What do the aperture labels on lenses mean?

For example, my 55-200 zoom says "4-5.6".  Now, I know that the lens is physically capable of a much broader range.  So, those numbers represent the max aperture only?

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