Focus tuning a portrait lens.

Started Jan 15, 2014 | Discussions thread
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Stacey_K Veteran Member • Posts: 8,183
Focus tuning a portrait lens.

I've been doing some test shots with my D700 in my small studio with a 105mm f2 DC and so far love the results.

One thing I have noticed (and have read is normal for this lens) this combo seems to front focus a little. It's not so much that at f4 the eyes aren't still sharp but I can tell the focus point is slightly forward of the eyes.

I'm wondering if this is a bad thing? I'll probably never shoot portraits wide open on FX with this lens and at least to me, a foreground object out of focus just looks unnatural. Like lets say their body is turned slightly so one shoulder is ahead of the focus point (the eyes). If I fine tuned the lens forward, this shoulder would be OOF. To me, it looks more natural for the bokeh to fade backwards instead of being both in front and behind the subject focus plane. What would really look weird to me is if the tip of their nose was OOF.

Just wondering what other people who shoot people with this lens do. I'm tempted to leave it alone or at least not try to 100% correct the front focusing. I'd rather err on being slightly front focused than end up being back focused on a portrait.

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