DOF Preview on Digital

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Russell, Sep 1, 2004.

  1. Russell

    Russell Guest

    I see that there have been some heated debates about this recently. I
    am from a film background and am considering getting a digital camera
    sometime. This will probably not be a DSLR, but something along the
    lines on a Minolta Dimage Z3.

    I had always assumed that DOF preview on digital cameras was redundant
    since you get a screen showing you the picture you are about to take.

    Is there more to it than this? Do some digital cameras have some other
    way of allowing you to preview your DOF more accurately?

    Thanks in advance,
    Russell.
    Russell, Sep 1, 2004
    #1
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  2. On Wed, 01 Sep 2004 15:58:14 +0200, Russell <> wrote:

    >I see that there have been some heated debates about this recently. I
    >am from a film background and am considering getting a digital camera
    >sometime. This will probably not be a DSLR, but something along the
    >lines on a Minolta Dimage Z3.
    >
    >I had always assumed that DOF preview on digital cameras was redundant
    >since you get a screen showing you the picture you are about to take.
    >
    >Is there more to it than this? Do some digital cameras have some other
    >way of allowing you to preview your DOF more accurately?
    >
    >Thanks in advance,
    >Russell.


    The view seen when not pressing the preview button is, at least on my
    300D, with the lense wide open... pressing the preview button closes
    the apature if its set to anything other than wide open.

    The LCD live view of my old g2 used to (or seemed to) open/close the
    apature according to how much light was getting through so the
    relative brigness of the viewfinder was always the same and where the
    light was to bright or dark would boost or reduce the gain on the
    signal somewhere between the ccd and the lcd.

    I've noticed that sometimes the preview doesnt work, but with out
    testing further the only thing I can think of is if the
    exposure/apature is such that the preview is likely to be black (long
    exposure) then it decides you're not going to see anything anyways...
    that said, I hardly use the preview myself so it may be a problem with
    one of my lenses but i've not had a need to check the whys and
    wherefores.


    --
    Jonathan Wilson.
    www.somethingerotic.com
    Jonathan Wilson, Sep 1, 2004
    #2
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  3. Russell

    Chris Brown Guest

    In article <>,
    Russell <> wrote:
    >
    >I had always assumed that DOF preview on digital cameras was redundant
    >since you get a screen showing you the picture you are about to take.


    No you don't. You get a screen showing you a noisy, low resolution image
    exposed at about 1/60 of a second with the lens wide open, using probably
    the wrong white balance.
    Chris Brown, Sep 1, 2004
    #3
  4. Russell

    Bruce Murphy Guest

    Chris Brown <_uce_please.com> writes:

    > In article <>,
    > Russell <> wrote:
    > >
    > >I had always assumed that DOF preview on digital cameras was redundant
    > >since you get a screen showing you the picture you are about to take.

    >
    > No you don't. You get a screen showing you a noisy, low resolution image
    > exposed at about 1/60 of a second with the lens wide open, using probably
    > the wrong white balance.


    Well, I don't think the white balance has much impact there :)

    B>
    Bruce Murphy, Sep 1, 2004
    #4
  5. Russell

    Matt Ion Guest

    Russell wrote:

    > I see that there have been some heated debates about this recently. I
    > am from a film background and am considering getting a digital camera
    > sometime. This will probably not be a DSLR, but something along the
    > lines on a Minolta Dimage Z3.
    >
    > I had always assumed that DOF preview on digital cameras was redundant
    > since you get a screen showing you the picture you are about to take.
    >
    > Is there more to it than this? Do some digital cameras have some other
    > way of allowing you to preview your DOF more accurately?


    First you have to understand a little something of how DOF works. Among
    other things, it's a function of aperture: the wider the aperture, the
    less the DOF; the smaller the aperture, the deeper the DOF.

    Almost all cameras with adjustable apertures, SLR or otherwise, will
    allow you to compose your shot with the aperture wide-open, to allow in
    the maximum light. Then when you trigger the shutter, they close the
    aperture to its pre-defined setting (if that setting is smaller than
    "wide-open".)

    Whether you're looking through a viewfinder or looking at an LCD screen,
    then, you're going to see the brightest picture available, but with the
    minimum DOF.

    What DOF preview does, is to close down the aperture to the defined
    setting, allowing you to "preview" the shot, albeit a somewhat darker
    image. It works the same, again, whether you're looking at a viewfinder
    image reflected off a pelicle mirror, or an LCD screen.
    Matt Ion, Sep 1, 2004
    #5
  6. Russell

    Steven Wandy Guest

    > No you don't. You get a screen showing you a noisy, low resolution image
    > exposed at about 1/60 of a second with the lens wide open, using probably
    > the wrong white balance.


    And on which camera did you experience this? I have had 8 digital cameras -
    starting from a Sony Mavica using floppies up to a current Oly E-1 and I
    never experienced what you describe. Whether it was with a camera with an
    LCD live view (ie the Oly 2100 and C700) or a screen to view the picture
    after exposure.
    Steven Wandy, Sep 2, 2004
    #6
  7. Russell

    Chris Brown Guest

    In article <BwwZc.29565$>,
    Steven Wandy <> wrote:
    >> No you don't. You get a screen showing you a noisy, low resolution image
    >> exposed at about 1/60 of a second with the lens wide open, using probably
    >> the wrong white balance.

    >
    >And on which camera did you experience this?


    Any digital camera with an LCD preview that I've ever used or owned,
    starting with the Nikon Coolpix 950, progressing through lots of different
    Canon models (various varieties of IXUSes and a few different Powershots),
    and various Sony things that I've played with briefly. It seems to be
    universal.
    Chris Brown, Sep 2, 2004
    #7
  8. Russell

    jpc Guest

    On Thu, 02 Sep 2004 11:28:58 GMT, Chris Brown
    <_uce_please.com> wrote:

    >In article <BwwZc.29565$>,
    >Steven Wandy <> wrote:
    >>> No you don't. You get a screen showing you a noisy, low resolution image
    >>> exposed at about 1/60 of a second with the lens wide open, using probably
    >>> the wrong white balance.

    >>
    >>And on which camera did you experience this?

    >
    >Any digital camera with an LCD preview that I've ever used or owned,
    >starting with the Nikon Coolpix 950, progressing through lots of different
    >Canon models (various varieties of IXUSes and a few different Powershots),
    >and various Sony things that I've played with briefly. It seems to be
    >universal.


    We went thru this in another thread a week or so ago. It depends on
    the camera. With my Oly 3020 when you half press the exposure button
    the iris closes, the scene darkens, and you can see the DOF in the
    LCD. With other camera the shutter stays open.

    jpc
    jpc, Sep 2, 2004
    #8
  9. Russell

    Chris Brown Guest

    In article <>, jpc <> wrote:
    >
    >We went thru this in another thread a week or so ago. It depends on
    >the camera. With my Oly 3020 when you half press the exposure button
    >the iris closes, the scene darkens, and you can see the DOF in the
    >LCD.


    ....or rather you could if the LCD wasn't such a low resolution that it shows
    things as being in focus that aren't in the final JPEG.
    Chris Brown, Sep 2, 2004
    #9
  10. Russell

    jpc Guest

    On Thu, 02 Sep 2004 15:29:03 GMT, Chris Brown
    <_uce_please.com> wrote:

    >In article <>, jpc <> wrote:
    >>
    >>We went thru this in another thread a week or so ago. It depends on
    >>the camera. With my Oly 3020 when you half press the exposure button
    >>the iris closes, the scene darkens, and you can see the DOF in the
    >>LCD.

    >
    >...or rather you could if the LCD wasn't such a low resolution that it shows
    >things as being in focus that aren't in the final JPEG.



    You missed my point. You said something was univeral; I pointed out
    different cameras do it different ways. I never said a DOF preview
    screen was all that useful to experienced photographer--either in the
    view finder of a 35 mm camera or the LCD of a digital camera.

    But as I pointed out in the previous thread, the feature, on my camera
    and others like it, is a simple and graphic way to explain DOF to
    budding photographers who are confused by the concept.

    jpc
    jpc, Sep 2, 2004
    #10
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