Super Fast Focus with a Big Depth of Field- Accurate Focus is for Pansies

2013-05-22 6

Who needs the rangefinder?

Use the hyperfocal distance of your lens.

Many of you own or at least have used a rangefinder camera at some point.
But what is a rangefinder?

Wikipedia defines a rangefinder as: “a camera fitted with a rangefinder: a range-finding focusing mechanism allowing the photographer to measure the subject distance and take photographs that are in sharp focus. Most varieties of rangefinder show two images of the same subject, one of which moves when a calibrated wheel is turned; when the two images coincide and fuse into one, the distance can be read off the wheel.”

We all know how difficult it can be to focus on a rangefinder sometimes, (especially when the subject is moving) but there is an answer.

On the lens, you might see something like this:

See the little hash marks with the aperture numbers on the bottom ring? That’s the Depth-of-Field scale. It shows how much of the scene will be in focus. If you set an aperture on the lens, (say, f/8) then that means the distance between the two corresponding hash marks on the bottom ring representing that aperture will be in focus.

To illustrate:

Remember: A larger aperture (like f/2.8) will result in a shallower depth of field, (less stuff in focus. BOKEHHHHH) and a smaller aperture (like f/22) will result in greater depth of field. (broader range of things in focus)

Try using a fast film so you can use a smaller aperture for street photography or sports.

Use a slow film if your subjects will be relatively static so you can get dat BOKEHHHHH

P.S. Yes, the first image was lifted from All hail Ken, the master of /p/. Your camera does not matter. ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

written by robotmonkey1996 on 2013-05-22 #gear #tutorials #camera #tutorial #tipster #select-type-of-tipster #select-what-this-tipster-is-about #camera-zone-focusing-fast-street-photography-leica-rangefinder-hyperfocal


  1. rrohe
    rrohe ·

    This is exactly how I shoot! f/16 for me, thanks.

  2. weihsuan
    weihsuan ·

    I think its call scale focusing.. and it doesnt work that well for 50mm lens. perhaps something wider

  3. bikeygeek
    bikeygeek ·

    I would say if you've got time always focus, I've taken thousands of street shots and the ones taken this way are nearly always disapointing. It is paticularly bad with a 50mm lens as shown, you get away with this somewhat with 35mm and wider lenses, like on most Lomo products. Placing the focus point in a shot as a point of interest is one of the main things you should be thinking about when composing a shot. If you shoot street in a big city with tall buildings most places you shoot will be in shadow most of the time, even on a sunny day in areas between buildings I find myself having to go down to f4 sometimes so this kind of prefocussing just doesn't work.

  4. xbalboax
    xbalboax ·

    Still getting the hang of it heres some more info about it.…

  5. xbalboax
    xbalboax ·

    Still getting the hang of it heres some more info about it.…

  6. robotmonkey1996
    robotmonkey1996 ·

    @bikeygeek My normal setup is a Canon 7 RF with the fabulous Industar-61 LD. It's worked out okay for me, but I suppose a wider focal length would yield a greater depth of field.

    @xbalboax Screw Eric Kim. If I wanted random and poorly composed portraits taken with a flash a foot from someone's face I'd go get a passport picture taken.

    @weihsuan Yes, you are very correct. This technique is called scale focusing.

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