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  1. #1
    PhotoPete's Avatar
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    Seeking Information on Lens Design

    Does anyone have any books or websites to recommend on the topic of lens design? Primitive Photography has a few suggestions based on classic lens design, but I am looking from something more comprehensive. Sidney Ray's Applied Photographic Optics is great, but it's very dense and due back to the library before I will have time to absorb all of it. Ideally, I'm looking for something with conscise information about calculating focal length, covering power, deplth of focus, etc. This trial-and-error approach is really getting tiresome.

  2. #2
    Loose Gravel's Avatar
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    I don't really understand where you are going with this question. Why do you need to calculate focal length? For most, what is marked on the lens is sufficient.

    Covering power: seems to me people look it up on the web, in lens brochures, or try the lens. Some, maybe, can remember all the lens types and coverage.

    Depth of focus is marked on smaller format lenses. There are DOF calculators and there are the same on the web that are Excel based. Here is the Rodenstock model:

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=155145&is=REG

    The formulas are in most photo texts.

    There are some freeware ray tracing programs on the web. Mostly used by and designed for the telescope folks.
    Watch for Loose Gravel

  3. #3
    PhotoPete's Avatar
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    I'm sorry- I was not clear enough in my original post. I am attempting to assemble my own lenses from various individual elements. I am not so ambitious as to grind anyting myself- these are (mostly) coated objectives from other lenses.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PhotoPete
    I'm sorry- I was not clear enough in my original post. I am attempting to assemble my own lenses from various individual elements. I am not so ambitious as to grind anyting myself- these are (mostly) coated objectives from other lenses.
    Edmund Industrial Optics' catalog contains recipes that I think are what you need.

  5. #5
    Donald Qualls's Avatar
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    One of the simplest designs is the double achromatic, essentially the same as a Ramsden (I think Ramsden is right; it's either that or Huygenian) eyepiece for a telescope. It's just two achromats of the same specification, facing opposite directions (usually with the convex or more convex face out), spaced according to formula, with the aperture stop midway between the lenses. You can likely buy suitable cemented achromats from Edmund, or you may be able to get them from resources that sell to amateur telescope makers who like to make their own eyepieces. Small telescope objectives should also work well.

    One advantage of symmetric designs like this is that they have no distortion and a flat plane of focus, as a simple consequence of the optics (providing they're spaced correctly). A disadvantage is that they perform best at close to 1:1, and tend to have a small amount of uncorrected spherical aberration and some coma at common photographic magnification factors; this can be largely overcome by using a small aperture, or used to advantage by calling the resulting optic a "portrait lens".
    Photography has always fascinated me -- as a child, simply for the magic of capturing an image onto glossy paper with a little box, but as an adult because of the unique juxtaposition of science and art -- the physics of optics, the mechanics of the camera, the chemistry of film and developer, alongside the art in seeing, composing, exposing, processing and printing.

  6. #6
    Ole
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    There are several books by Rudolf Kingslake which contain what you need.

    And there's a PC program called OSLO which is worth getting - the manual alone is more than worth the price of an evaluation copy.
    -- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
    Norway

  7. #7
    PhotoPete's Avatar
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    Thanks, all!



 

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