# God! DOF Scale in my Lens DOES NOT Agreen with the Hyperfocal Formula!

Discussion in '35mm Cameras' started by narke, Jan 14, 2005.

1. ### narkeGuest

I have a Zeiss Planar 1.4/50. When I focus on the infinity, the DOF
scale indicates the hyperfocal distance for F16 is about 3.3m. But
work from the formula, it follows that

h = f^2/(N*c) = 50^2/(16*0.025)

the above should be 6.25m.

It's a big difference with what on the sale. What's wrong? What about

-
narke

narke, Jan 14, 2005

2. ### Al DenelsbeckGuest

Hyperfocal distance is the point where the *farthest* reach of DOF is
infinity. In other words, HF falls somewhere (roughly one-third) of the
distance between the closest "acceptable focus" point, and infinity.

So, don't focus at infinity. Instead, focus where the outside of the
DOF scale touches infinity. Your focus (center) pointer at that time should
indicate HF distance, and of course the other side of the DOF scale
indicates a much closer distance.

There are other factors that may rear their ugly heads, as well. Not
all 50mm lenses are true 50mm focal lengths, and "acceptable focus" can be
a bit arbitrary.

All that said, the Zuiko 1.4 sitting on my desk seems to fall just
shy of 5 meters.

- Al.

Al Denelsbeck, Jan 14, 2005

3. ### King SardonGuest

This is pretty serious - your lens is defective and will have to be
returned.

Or possibly the manufacturer used an optimistic CoC of 0.047mm instead

My 50mm lens? Most 35mm format lenses use a CoC of about 0.25-0.35mm,
and 2 1/4" tend to use 0.05-0.06mm.

Feel free to use whatever CoC you want... it will not affect the
performance of the lens.

King Sardon

King Sardon, Jan 14, 2005
4. ### narkeGuest

This is pretty serious - your lens is defective and will have to be
But ... how this happened, it sounds imposible! the lens can shoot, it
just works, I did not find any problem until a seriously check the
sclale!

narke, Jan 14, 2005
5. ### Chris LoffredoGuest

As someone else posted, it is all about what circle of confusion the
manufacturer uses to calculate and the depth of field scales.
The results depend on how much you enlarge the image and your quality
requirements. The depth of field scales are suggestions/hints: Objects
near the ends of the scale will not be perfectly in focus; but the
degree to which that is visible depends again on how much the image is
enlarged.

In practice I tend to use the scales conservatively. That means that I
stay well within the suggested zone of "sharpness", for example by using
the f/5.6 scales when shooting at f/8.0.

FYI: The scales on my Zeiss Planar 50mm f/1.4 (old Rolleiflex mount)
show a minimum hyperfocal distance of slightly over 3 meters at f/8.0:
Sound familiar?
My Soviet 50mms are slightly over 4 meters and old Pentax SMC Takumar
50mm f/1.4 gives just under 5 meters.
That doesn't mean that the Zeiss is better (or worse) than the Pentax,
just that they used different circles of confusion to place the scales.
It does mean that I'll "trust" the Pentax scales more and use the Zeiss
scales more conservatively.

Chris

Chris Loffredo, Jan 14, 2005
6. ### Chris LoffredoGuest

As someone else posted, it is all about which circle of confusion the
manufacturer uses to calculate the depth of field scales.
The results depend on how much you enlarge the image and your quality
requirements. The depth of field scales are suggestions/hints: Objects
near the ends of the scale will not be perfectly in focus; but the
degree to which that is visible depends again on how much the image is
enlarged.

In practice I tend to use the scales conservatively. That means that I
stay well within the suggested zone of "sharpness", for example by using
the f/5.6 scales when shooting at f/8.0.

FYI: The scales on my Zeiss Planar 50mm f/1.4 (old Rolleiflex mount)
show a minimum hyperfocal distance of slightly over 3 meters at f/8.0:
Sound familiar?
My Soviet 50mms are slightly over 4 meters and my old Pentax SMC Takumar
50mm f/1.4 gives just under 5 meters.
That doesn't mean that the Zeiss is better (or worse) than the Pentax,
just that they used different circles of confusion to place the scales.
It does mean that I'll "trust" the Pentax scales more and use the Zeiss
scales more conservatively.

Chris

Chris Loffredo, Jan 14, 2005
7. ### Joseph MeehanGuest

Gee, maybe you could just take a picture or two and figure out what
works for you? Should anyone really care what someone else has decided
works for them?

Joseph Meehan, Jan 14, 2005
8. ### meGuest

This might help. Online HF calculator:
Film best,
me

me, Jan 14, 2005
9. ### Alan Browne-Guest

Run it again with a CoC of 0.033 and you'll be closer at about 4.7 m.
CoC 0.045 at about 3.5 meteres..
etc.

You choose the CoC based on the print size.
The larger the print size, the smaller the CoC required to have good
detail in the "field".

The lens markings really know nothing about the DOF of the image at
taking time or printing time. Surprising, eh? They're just a
guideline, usually for an 8x10 print.

It would appear that Zeiss believe the CoC for the lens should be 0.045
which is not very ambitious of them. Actually sounds more like a medium
format CoC / DOF markings. (6x6 is about 0.06 CoC).

Get fcalc as a handy tool. www.tangentsoft.com and also see

http://www.nikonlinks.com/unklbil/dof.htm for recipes and so on.

Cheers,
Alan.

Alan Browne-, Jan 14, 2005
10. ### Alan Browne-Guest

0.047 would be pessimistic. Hell, it's almost as bad as a MF lens.

Alan Browne-, Jan 14, 2005
11. ### Alan Browne-Guest

You're flirting with a "troll" label.

Alan Browne-, Jan 14, 2005
12. ### Alan Browne-Guest

Good point. Most people don't really know how to choose a DOF/hyper-f
based on the lens markings. (And on my lenses that have the markings,
they are so tight on the barell as to be useless for the purpose). With
the CZ's I rented in the fall, it was a beaut.

Cheers,
Alan.

Alan Browne-, Jan 14, 2005
13. ### robGuest

In message <> - "narke"
:>
:>I have a Zeiss Planar 1.4/50. When I focus on the infinity, the DOF
:>scale indicates the hyperfocal distance for F16 is about 3.3m. But
:>work from the formula, it follows that
:>
:>h = f^2/(N*c) = 50^2/(16*0.025)
:>
:>the above should be 6.25m.
:>
:>It's a big difference with what on the sale. What's wrong? What about
:>
:>
:>-
:>narke
:>

Hi

The .025 value is normally used for 35mm film. I'm not familiar with Zeiss
equipment, is it Medium Format?
The CoC value is related to the amount of magnification required to produce at
certain size print. For example, to produce an 8"x10" print, a 35mm neg
requires more magnification than film used in a MF camera. Therefore the 35mm
film needs a smaller CoC value.
Just as an FYI, CoC for more DSLR's is .010.

Hope this helps
Rob
www.rcp.ca

rob, Jan 14, 2005
14. ### BandicootGuest

[SNIP]
This discussion prompted me to re-read the instructions that come with a
Rodenstock DoF calculator, as I half remembered them saying something about
a standard for the CoC. Sure enough, they begin by saying that the
calculator is based on the "internationally standard" CoC for 35mm of
0.03mm, and uses proportionally larger Cs of C for larger formats. It
doesn't say whose standard that is, and I doubt that it is an ISO one since
clearly the main manufacturers of 35mm lenses use so many different values
where I would expect that if there was a standard some at least would use it
and boast that they did (if only to distinguish themselves from Sigma, who
wouldn't use it...)

It is true that I've noticed just from looking at lens markings that Pentax
is rather conservative about DoF, using a small CoC that places them at one
end of the scale, while Zeiss seems more optimistic - which in this context
is not a good thing - out at the other. No problem once you are used to
it, and know what the markings mean, of course, but a pain for anyone who
has lenses from multiple sources all using different assumed CoC figures.

Peter

Bandicoot, Jan 15, 2005
15. ### narkeGuest

just as an FYI, CoC for more DSLR's is .010.

just interesting that, why DSLR's use a such small CoC value? Does it
mean the focus capacility of a digital camera bad than a film one?

narke, Jan 15, 2005
16. ### narkeGuest

Glad to hear that. I beleived it after I visited a camera store today
and checked another CZ' lens, a 1.7/50mm, the Hyferfocal of it is even
small than mine -- a little short than 3 meter. Amazing! Even the same
manufacture use differenct CoC values for their similar products.
Istay well within the suggested zone of "sharpness", for example by
using the f/5.6 scales when shooting at f/8.0.

It's a good ideal. But now, I decide to print a big sheet for DoFs of
every posible situations (a few distances I often used for every
f-stop) and just forget the scale.

narke, Jan 15, 2005
17. ### narkeGuest

It would appear that Zeiss believe the CoC for the lens should be
0.045 which is not very ambitious of them.

Did you mean that contax made a sharper lens than others and so they
decide to use a bigger CoC?

narke, Jan 15, 2005
18. ### narkeGuest

So, don't focus at infinity. Instead, focus where the outside of the
Oh ... I dont understant your method, could please you explain it
again? What means " forcus where the outside of the DOF scale touches
infinity"?

narke, Jan 15, 2005
19. ### robGuest

In message <> - "narke"
:>
:>> just as an FYI, CoC for more DSLR's is .010.
:>
:>just interesting that, why DSLR's use a such small CoC value? Does it
:>mean the focus capacility of a digital camera bad than a film one?
:>

It's to do with the physical size of the sensor. DSLR's with a full frame
sensor (like Canon 1Ds) have a CoC of .025 to .030.

Rob
www.rcp.ca

rob, Jan 15, 2005
20. ### meGuest

Align the infinity symbol with your chosen aperture (based on your exposure)
on the DOF scale.

Or said another way:

For HF the infinity symbol should be aligned (i.e. across from) with the
f-stop value on the DOF scale you have chosen for your exposure. After you
have done this the closest distance of acceptable focus will then be aligned
with the same value f-stop on the opposite end of the DOF scale.

Below is a diagram of a distance scale and DOF scale for a 50mm lens set for
Hyper Focal:

6ft........12ft.......inf.
|
f22........O........f22

As per the diagram above the aperture is f22, 6ft is the minimum focusing
distance and infinity is the maximum focusing distance.
Sign,
me

me, Jan 15, 2005