shallow depth of field for compact digitals closeups

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Bucky, Jul 12, 2005.

  1. Bucky

    Bucky Guest

    What are some practical tips to achieve the most shallow depth of field
    for compact digital closeups? Please add to or correct the list I came
    up with. Assume there are no manual adjustments available besides zoom
    and macro mode.

    - Use macro mode.
    - Get as close to the subject as possible.
    - If subject is not in center, use focus lock.
    - Zoom out so that lowest aperture is available.
    Bucky, Jul 12, 2005
    #1
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  2. Bucky

    Mark² Guest

    "Bucky" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > What are some practical tips to achieve the most shallow depth of field
    > for compact digital closeups? Please add to or correct the list I came
    > up with. Assume there are no manual adjustments available besides zoom
    > and macro mode.
    >
    > - Use macro mode.
    > - Get as close to the subject as possible.
    > - If subject is not in center, use focus lock.
    > - Zoom out so that lowest aperture is available.


    DOF will always be more difficult with smaller sensors.
    Closer-focusing will always lead to shallower DOF.
    Mark², Jul 12, 2005
    #2
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  3. Bucky

    Bob Williams Guest

    Bucky wrote:
    > What are some practical tips to achieve the most shallow depth of field
    > for compact digital closeups? Please add to or correct the list I came
    > up with. Assume there are no manual adjustments available besides zoom
    > and macro mode.
    >
    > - Use macro mode.
    > - Get as close to the subject as possible.
    > - If subject is not in center, use focus lock.
    > - Zoom out so that lowest aperture is available.
    >


    The only things that make any difference are:
    1) Distance to the subject. (Closer distance gives shallower DOF)
    2) Aperture. (Wider apertures give shallower DOF)
    Bob Williams
    Bob Williams, Jul 12, 2005
    #3
  4. Bucky

    Ron Hunter Guest

    Bucky wrote:
    > What are some practical tips to achieve the most shallow depth of field
    > for compact digital closeups? Please add to or correct the list I came
    > up with. Assume there are no manual adjustments available besides zoom
    > and macro mode.
    >
    > - Use macro mode.
    > - Get as close to the subject as possible.
    > - If subject is not in center, use focus lock.
    > - Zoom out so that lowest aperture is available.
    >

    Minimum depth of field is achieved with the widest aperture setting. A
    true macro lens usually has a pretty low F number, so it naturally has a
    shallow depth of field (often under 1/2 inch!). I believe you have a
    grasp of the matter. Now WHY do you want a shallow DOF? Sometimes you
    can overdo this and make a picture that isn't all that pleasant to look at.


    --
    Ron Hunter
    Ron Hunter, Jul 12, 2005
    #4
  5. Bucky

    Bucky Guest

    Bob Williams wrote:
    > The only things that make any difference are:
    > 1) Distance to the subject. (Closer distance gives shallower DOF)
    > 2) Aperture. (Wider apertures give shallower DOF)


    Right, but there are other factors that influence those 2 factors, so
    I'm looking for any additional practical advice relevant for compact
    digital cameras. Here are some specs from the Canon SD200/300:

    normal: 1.0 ft to infinity, f/2.8
    macro (W): 0.1 ft. to 1.6 ft, f/2.8
    macro (T): 1.0 ft. to 1.6 ft, f/4.9

    For example, to optimize distance to the subject, use macro mode.
    Instead of using zoom to get closer to the subject, zoom out and move
    the camera closer to the subject. As a novice photographer, I kept
    getting in-focus macro shots of a plate of food. Finally I realized
    that it was focusing in the middle of the plate, so that the depth of
    field was not so apparent.
    Bucky, Jul 12, 2005
    #5
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