Definition of bokeh, simply gibberish?

Started 5 months ago | Discussions thread
Matthew Miller
Senior MemberPosts: 1,250Gear list
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it really seems like you are willfully misunderstanding. But here's one last shot
In reply to guitarjeff, 5 months ago

guitarjeff wrote:

There are several aspects to bokeh that make it more or less desirable.

To you, or to many? If I like it, and you don't, does that mean there is MORE bokeh for me and less for you? Is it subjective?

Okay, I'm going to try one more thing. No, wait, two things because I have a different point below. But let's start with the first one:

Bokeh isn't a scale where more of it is good and less of it is bad, and there's a subjective element to how much there might be. It is a thing which exists, and which can be rated subjectively on a scale from good to bad, not more to less.

So here's the thing I'm trying. Let's talk about food. Food has flavor. Some food has more flavor, some is bland. That basically depends on how much spice is in the food. The amount of flavor is pretty much objective. However, the taste is a subjective: you might like it, I might not. But we can both say: wow, this has a strong flavor, or wow, this has a weak flavor, and agree.

It has NOTHING to do with how out of focus something is. Only the quality of the blur circles (that might not even be circular, but that is another story).

I never said it had anything to do with the amount of blur. The amount of blur is only one QUALITY of the blur, some may like more, some may like less, amount has nothing to do with it's actual existence. If bokeh is a THING, then it is definable with concrete parameters, if it is subjective, then it's not definable.

It is actually the case that there are some pretty well agreed-on concrete parameters which contribute to good bokeh. This isn't absolute — it's like saying that clarity is good in diamonds — but generally, people agree. Specifically, a slight degree of spherical aberration contributes to smooth transitions ("creamy bokeh") in out of focus areas (and that's typically seen as "good bokeh"), while lenses which overcompensate (forming  donut-shaped rings around specular highlights) have busier background blur ("nervous bokeh", generally "bad bokeh")

This is a real thing. You're not adding any value by trying to redefine taste as amount of flavor.

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