Focusing the View Camera: A Scientific Way to Focus the View Camera and Estimate Depth of Field. by Harold M. Merklinger. Merklinger’s method is less widely used, but is much easier to apply in the field. . Harold Merklinger describes his method for optimizing depth of field here. Harold Merklinger on Depth of Field. If you arrived at this page by a direct link, it will be helpful for background information if you read my article, More on Depth.

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The relatively thick green band under each graph shows the DOF area. Again, it can be harod seen that both sharpness and resolution do depend on the focal length when magnification is kept constant. What would we have seen, if we had kept a constant magnification for both the toucan and the plate on the curtain?

They believe the formulas give them the exact description of the zone of acceptable sharpness. As we can see from this graph, if any important objects are closer to the camera than two hyperfocal distances 2hwe should focus our lens at the hyperfocal distance. Depending upon the answer the photographer either increases or decreases the amount of lens tilt.

How the near point varies with the chosen disk of confusion in Merklinger’s method.

And poor resolution means poor sharpness. Both rules must be obeyed. Is the information at this web site still relevant?

The nearest point of acceptable focus according to the conventional depth-of-field formula is shown for comparison. First we have to draw a horizontal line that determines the acceptable circle of confusion c 0i.

However if we make a sufficient enlargement, it will not be difficult to notice that the DOF barold is asymmetrical. The smaller this value, the sharper the image.


haold If so, how many new details will we see, if we focus the lens at infinity? Scheimpflug’s methods have been used extensively in the field of photogrammetry making maps from photographs ever since he originated them. The lens is focused at the distance djust where the object is located. The article is published on this web site.

A good friend of msrklinger, Mr. The lens plane is a flat surface drawn through the center of the lens and remaining perpendicular to the lens axis a line straight through the lens.

Digital cameras bring a new set of potential pitfall to the imaging process. Check out this link for prices and ordering information. For a diagram of the Scheimpflug Principle, select this link 4. The cityscape I selected is shown in Fig. To make things clear, I also prepared another version of those pictures Fig. This is an interesting concept that I know I have often used with analyzing it when I was worried the hyperfocal method would not render sufficient distance detail, often as a secondary safety shot.

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The amount and direction of lens tilt determines where the Hinge Line is. Focusing at infinity vs. The Hinge Rule and the Scheimpflug Rule together determine how the view camera focuses. Some other Zoomify views will nevertheless work with Flash Player 8 – but seemingly not this one. Beyond the distance of exact focus fuzziness grows. We can discover this by plotting the resolution relative to the resolution achieved at the same distance if the kerklinger were hyperfocally focused at the same f-stop using the appropriate circle of confusion parameter for 35mm and APS-C of 0.

Where L is the camera height, F is the lens focal length and W is the format size in the down direction. It must be admitted that the larger the distance from the camera, the more details are captured merklingdr a circle of confusion of a constant diameter. It now contains a comparison with a dye sublimation print.


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An object one-tenth of the way back from D, towards our camera that is, at a distance of hagold. Let us call this area the green zone.

There is only one way to resolve this dispute. In his opinion, it is better to describe DOF in terms yarold the resolution in the haeold field rather than concentrating on the characteristics of the final image. It is based on a number of reasonable assumptions, however it still works perfectly most of the time.

Now let harkld return to the results of my experiments. But let us be patient. Enlarged fragment of Fig. Most films are able to record detail about an order of magnitude finer. This observation did not square with his mer,linger either. The advantages of focusing at infinity did not prove to be obvious.

On each of these supporting pages, the first available link will usually take you back to where you left this main page, or at least back to the following Table of Contents. The power of the view camera is not so much in the method of previewing the image although some will argue that point but in the ability to focus precisely at multiple distances simultaneously.

Essentially, considering the traditional landscape situation, Merklinger notes that distant objects, being at smaller magnification than close objects, contain more detail and thus need more resolution.

Technical Books on Photography by Harold M. Merklinger

However, as a Russian saying goes, simplicity can be worse than larceny. The hyperfocal distance with this configuration is It mdrklinger give us the largest DOF in our picture. One makes an arbitrary focusing movement and observes whether the focus got better or worse. The idea looks vague, doesn’t it?