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Friday, March 11, 2011

How to make your lens SHARPER

Sharpness. Yes, all everyone cares about is sharpness. And its one of the gimmicks camera manufacturers usually use against us innocent consumers. 'Softness' is a term that basically means that it isn't sharp. Usually, lenses will have this softness at different focal lengths. Depending on the lens, different lenses will have different amount of softness. Even huge, large, heavy pro lenses still do have softness like the Nikkor 24-70mm f2.8.

But, if you do know how to use a lens, a cheap RM300+ lens might be sharper than that pro lens you're dreaming about. It all depends on whether you know how to use your lens or not. If you're given the 24-70mm f2.8 and if you don't know how to use it, softness still might appear.

Okay, cut to the chase. How do you sharpen your lens??
Simple. It should work for all lenses. Cheap, old, expensive, you get the point. Anyway, its quite simple. Simply, stop your lens down to two stops. Depending on what aperture your lens has, it's usually in the f7.1/f8 zone unless you're buying fast zooms or primes with apertures at f1.4 - f2.8. Check your manual for further reference.

Should you buy a sharp lens?
Well, its hard to decide. I don't do lab tests. And my tests are usually not-so-scientific tests. But what I can say is, it does help. But should you buy an expensive lens over a cheap lens that has almost the same optics? Not necessarily. You're most probably paying for the better build quality, bokeh, less distortion, etc.

1 comment:

  1. The better the lens the better the image sharpness regardless of mega pixel resolution. Most lenses have a sweetspot roughly f/8 to f/11. The discussion I was hoping to find is; if there is a way to physically make your lenses sharper with out sacrificing shallow depth. Like a lens baby is known to alter the focus of existing lenses making the 'sweet-spot' much sharper, however, the rest of the composition remains out of focus (tilt-shifting). I'm sure there will be a product out there that you could attach to the front part of the lens to adjust the sharpening. ;/



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