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PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2011 8:34 pm 
I'm on a crash course on everything photography atm and a lot of the stuff I've been learning has come from here. Thought I'd share todays lesson's results as some might find it handy.

Todays lesson has been hyperfocal distance :D

Wikipedia says ‘In optics and photography, hyperfocal distance is a distance beyond which all objects can be brought into an “acceptable” focus

The problem I might have had is my lens (Canon 18mm to 135mm kit lens) doesn’t have a focal length scale on the focus ring. Fortunately I’ve installed Magic Lantern on my SD cards. One of the small side benifits of this is the focal distance displayed down in the bottom right of the screen when using Live View. Very handy

The next problem is knowing what the hyperfocal distance is for any given situation. After rooting around on the internet a bit I came across a few tables and calculations. This was great for helping me understand the concept but no good for assisting me when I’m actually setting up a shot as they were all to big to carry in my ‘light as possible’ camera kit. To solve this I’ve created a little credit card sized table that I’ve laminated and now lives tucked away with my camera for when I need it.

Here's an image of the card


To download the spreadsheet to customize the card to your camera and other needs its probably easiest to go to my blog post as the links to the Circle of Confusion values are there too

I hope folks find this useful


 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2011 9:09 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 25, 2008 12:48 pm
Posts: 8087
Location: UK
Two suggestions: firstly the level of precision in the values is really excessive. You're not going to set focus to 4.03m picking one example. Depending on the lens marking, at best you might be turning it between 3 and 5 meters and hope for the best. And that leads me to the second point, be aware that zoom lenses may not be parfocal. That is, they may not have the same focus distance as the focal length is changed. The distance indicator may only be accurate for one focal length.

Canon DSLRs: 7D2, 7D1, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 70-300L, 100-400L, 100L, MP-E 65, EF-S 10-18, 15-85
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 50/1.4A, 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS
Compacts: Sony HX9V, Fuji X100.

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2011 9:34 pm 
The precision point is a good one Popo. The reason for the values as they are is I've copied the formula from elsewhere. I'm very much in the 'know nothing' category here so not going to mess with other peoples recommendations/work.

As mentioned in the post my lens doesnt have a focal length scale. I'm going to use the figure shown in the Live View screen by the Magic Lantern software. I'm guessing this is pulled from information in the camera somewhere as it looks like it shows up in the EXIF data too. I'm also assuming that this will be pretty accurate when pulled from a Canon lens etc.

Be interested to know if these are correct assumptions 8)

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2011 5:11 am 
In response to Popo's feedback I've adjusted the card reducing the number of decimal places from 2 across the board to 1 below 4m and none from 4 and above.

Here's the image. I'll update the spreadsheet from the link on the blog later


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