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  1. #41
    cliveh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DREW WILEY View Post
    We LF types control depth of field by things like swing and tilt. That's why we get far more in acute focus than people using conventional gear.
    In a receding perspective, everything from your feet to infinity can be placed in correct focus. So it's actually a far easier problem with big view
    cameras.
    Unless the subject is more than about 6 feet away.

    “The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”

    Francis Bacon

  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan King View Post
    I took a few samples to my camera club meeting, and the consensus was indeed my error with regard to depth of field and format size. Apparently my camera has schooled me in the laws of optics.

    P.S. I can't even imagine what large format photographers have to do to get a reasonable depth of field!!
    My cameras have schooled me once or twice.

    It's not always the lesson I first thought bit was though. One of the lessons I've learned along this line is that it's not really the format.

    Aperture and focal length are what controls DOF. Large format cameras just normally use longer lenses.

    Personally I've found that I like what lenses in the 150-180mm range do in 35mm, MF, and 4x5. I like the DOF there.
    Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

  3. #43

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    True. The format doesn't cause the problem but simply highlights the same issues inherent in photography. Where you may be forgiven in smaller formats you begin to see issues in larger ones. With a 90mm lens in 35mm I am careful to get enough depth of field, but with the wider angle of view with the same focal length in medium format I forget that it is just as much of an issue.

  4. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by DREW WILEY View Post
    We LF types control depth of field by things like swing and tilt. That's why we get far more in acute focus than people using conventional gear. In a receding perspective, everything from your feet to infinity can be placed in correct focus. So it's actually a far easier problem with big view cameras.
    Quote Originally Posted by cliveh View Post
    Unless the subject is more than about 6 feet away.
    Clive, I've used view cameras for more than three decades, frequently photographing landscapes with receding perspectives, and am totally unable to figure out what you mean. Please elaborate.

  5. #45
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    [f-number] and focal length are what controls DOF. Large format cameras just normally use longer lenses.
    This is technically correct, but a roundabout understanding. It happens to be correct because F-number and focal length together determine the aperture diameter, which is what really "determines" DOF in thin-lens optics (along with criteria for print sharpness and final magnification, but those things would be held constant when comparing different camera formats).

    Only aperture diameter (entrance pupil diameter) and magnification matter for DOF. It's really that simple. Perspective, focal length, cropping, format--none of these actually matters except insofar as it can have a practical impact on the aperture diameter and magnification, which are the only two things that DO matter.

    A 5mm aperture generally gives comfortable DOF for a head-and-shoulders portrait at a typical print magnification of 0.25--roughly an 8x10 print. Distance, format, camera and focal length don't matter. You can use any lens on any film and stand at any distance. Unfortunately lenses are not marked with aperture diameter, but 5mm corresponds to f5.6 on a 28mm lens, f/32 on a 150mm lens, and f/64 on a 300mm lens.
    f/22 and be there.

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by BetterSense View Post
    This is technically correct, but a roundabout understanding. It happens to be correct because F-number and focal length together determine the aperture diameter, which is what really "determines" DOF in thin-lens optics (along with criteria for print sharpness and final magnification, but those things would be held constant when comparing different camera formats).

    Only aperture diameter (entrance pupil diameter) and magnification matter for DOF. It's really that simple. Perspective, focal length, cropping, format--none of these actually matters except insofar as it can have a practical impact on the aperture diameter and magnification, which are the only two things that DO matter.

    A 5mm aperture generally gives comfortable DOF for a head-and-shoulders portrait at a typical print magnification of 0.25--roughly an 8x10 print. Distance, format, camera and focal length don't matter. You can use any lens on any film and stand at any distance. Unfortunately lenses are not marked with aperture diameter, but 5mm corresponds to f5.6 on a 28mm lens, f/32 on a 150mm lens, and f/64 on a 300mm lens.
    See Nathan, I'm still getting schooled.

  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by BetterSense View Post
    This is technically correct, but a roundabout understanding. It happens to be correct because F-number and focal length together determine the aperture diameter, which is what really "determines" DOF in thin-lens optics (along with criteria for print sharpness and final magnification, but those things would be held constant when comparing different camera formats).

    Only aperture diameter (entrance pupil diameter) and magnification matter for DOF. It's really that simple. Perspective, focal length, cropping, format--none of these actually matters except insofar as it can have a practical impact on the aperture diameter and magnification, which are the only two things that DO matter.

    A 5mm aperture generally gives comfortable DOF for a head-and-shoulders portrait at a typical print magnification of 0.25--roughly an 8x10 print. Distance, format, camera and focal length don't matter. You can use any lens on any film and stand at any distance. Unfortunately lenses are not marked with aperture diameter, but 5mm corresponds to f5.6 on a 28mm lens, f/32 on a 150mm lens, and f/64 on a 300mm lens.
    BetterSense is completely correct.

    However .....

    If you try to communicate this information to someone who normally doesn't even realize that film/sensors come in different sizes (the case with the vast majority of people who take photos) you are likely to get a very confused response. Most people don't think in terms of magnification.

    For most people, the explanations of how this stuff works silently assume that the film/sensor size is a constant, and then refer to shooting distance, focal length and f/stop instead.
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

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