Imagery: Auto - Large Table of Contents

EXCERPT page containing first few paragraphs. 2023-03-29 19:28:17

Target for manual or autofocus

Check Your Camera

It is possible for the viewfinder of a DSLR to appear in focus when in fact the image taken will be slightly out-of-focus. That’s because there are dual optical systems involved, and nothing guarantees that they both have to have the same-length optical path. The same issue can occur with a rangefinder.

You should first verify that the diopter setting is correct for your eyes. Then shoot some tests as shown on the diopter page, as well as some field shots.

A camera that consistently mis-focuses should be sent in for adjustment, requesting that the viewfinder (or rangefinder) be adjusted.


The top crop is what my best effort focusing by eye produced (Zeiss 100mm f/2 Makro-Planar). The bottom crop used Live View. Nikon replaced the focusing assembly on my D3. However, the repaired camera remained stubbornly insistent on producing similar results.

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Diglloyd Making Sharp Images articulates years of best practices and how-to, painstakingly learned over a decade of camera and lens evaluation.

Save yourself those years of trial and error by jump-starting your photographic technical execution when making the image. The best lens or camera is handicapped if the photographer fails to master perfect shot discipline. High-resolution digital cameras are unforgiving of errors, at least if one wants the best possible results.

  • Eases into photographic challenges with an introductory section.
  • Covers aspects of digital sensor technology that relate to getting the best image quality.
  • Technique section discusses every aspect of making a sharp image handheld or on a tripod.
  • Depth of field and how to bypass depth of field limitations via focus stacking.
  • Optical aberrations: what they are, what they look like, and what to do about them.
  • MTF, field curvature, focus shift: insight into the limitations of lab tests and why imaging performance is far more complex than it appears.
  • Optical aberrations: what they are, what they look like, and what to do about them.
  • How to test a lens for a “bad sample”.

Intrigued? See Focusing Zeiss DSLR Lenses For Peak Performance, PART ONE: The Challenges, or (one topic of many) field curvature.

By eye, the top image is what I saw as in focus on the Nikon D3 (repeatedly)

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