Having read the technicalities of a lens in “Langfords Basic Photography” which describes the lens as a looking down a tube. I was not surprised to see to find it had very little affect on the points in my photos but cleared clutter and focuses the eye on the subject. The following three shots were taken using Apperture setting. From the same viewpoint in the same conditions of light. The subject is the sign at the end of the road.
I will include details of the Exif file which iS the file of metadata the camera captures each time the shutter is activated.
The display of the road sign will only change if the aspect changes, ie if the viewpoint moves.
What does change is the size or amount of detail captured by each pixel as you go through the zoom range. This means the cropped images get bigger as you zoom in because you are cropping less to get the same area. This explains why the last crop is the largest of the three.
The tube analogy explains this very well. The zoom moves down the tube and enables more detail to be shown.
Of course you could achieve this by moving the sensor or camera closure to the subject.
Langford, M. (1986). Basic photography. London: Focal Press.
Wikipedia, zoom lens diagram. Wikipedia Online. 2010.