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Pentax 645D
Pentax 645D

Diffraction Effects at f/11 to f/16

This page assesses what happens to image quality from f/8 to f/16, the contrast-robbing effects of diffraction being the concern.

For in-depth coverage of diffraction and depth of field and more, see Making Sharp Images.

Contrast and diffraction

When I tested the Leica S2, I discovered that the lenses were so outstanding that diffraction effects were already visible at f/8, with a clear loss of micro contrast at f/11, and a very dull f/16.

Similar contrast loss should be expected from the Pentax 645D, but the degradation from diffraction depends on how good the optics are to begin with, and might also depend to a small extent on sensor technology.

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diglloyd Advanced Photography includes hundreds of pages of exclusive coverage and high resolution, Retina-grade example pictures detailing Canon and Nikon DSLR bodies and their lenses, with in-depth analysis of sharpness and contrast, color, bokeh, vignetting, distortion, MTF, and flare. Also included is a wealth of in-context technique and workflow insight. Since 2006, diglloyd Advanced Photography is the authoritative review and on-line reference for discerning Canon and Nikon shooters. Subscriptions cost $ per year.

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Pentax 645D + 55mm f/2.8 @ f/11, 2 sec, ISO 100
Pentax 645D + 55mm f/2.8 @ f/11, 2 sec, ISO 100

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