Hyperfocal Distance?

Started 2 months ago | Discussions thread
dsjtecserv Veteran Member • Posts: 3,897
Re: Hyperfocal Distance?

CameraCarl wrote:

Gerry Winterbourne wrote:

CameraCarl wrote:

Crotonmark wrote:

CameraCarl wrote:

I think one of the simplest practical explanations of how to set hyperfocal distance in the field is provided by Dave Morrow in the video below. His discussion of his technique comes in around the 4:00 minute mark. If you watch from the beginning, you may not find the first minute or so useful because this video is part of a series and it refers to an earlier video about using back button auto focus for landscape photography. But be patient, it is worth the wait. (As are all his videos for his unique approach to photography and life.)


its an interesting video. I wish he explained why 6' gave him the Hyperfocus he wanted for that beautiful snow scene

He did. The closest object you could see in the frame that he wanted to be sharp was 3 feet away. You double this to get the 6 foot hyperfocal distance.

But that's not hyperfocal distance, so if that is the explanation given it's wrong.

The hyperfocal distance for any combination of sensor, focal length and f-stop is calculated from those parameters. It has nothing to do with what one wants to be in focus.

Once the hyperfocal distance is calculated then, if one focuses at it the near end of DOF is at half that distance (and the far end is at infinity). If by chance the critical object happens to be at the hyperfocal distance then, yes, it works. Or, more often, it is within the DOF which is fine.

If in another composition the closest object he wanted to be sharp were, say, 5 feet away, then he would have focused on an object 10 feet away.

Why? Unless the calculated hyperfocal distance was 10 feet (in which case focusing at 6 feet would be wrong) this is meaningless.

If there is one thing one wants critically sharp and distant things can be blurred the solution is to focus on that thing no matter how near or far; if one wants everything sharp to infinity then hyperfocal distance as calculated is the solution. What you say is neither of those.

I'd recommend that you view the video. If you have any questions, I would recommend you direct them to the author.

But in the meantime, the OP and anyone else reading this thread should understand that the instructions given in the video (at least as described above) are wrong, and won't solve the problem. As Gerry noted, the near-side depth of field is only half the focus distance when the place of focus is at the hyperfocal point, which is determined separately by the focal length and aperture, and doesn't change for any given focal length and aperture.  One cannot "dial up" the hyperfocal distance just by focusing at twice the distance of an object you want sharp!


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