Depth of Field

I recently picked up a few rolls of colour film that I had put through the Rolleiflex (pretty much the only film camera I’m interested in using these days).

I’m always shocked at how shallow the depth of field is at wide apertures with the Rolleiflex — a function of the long focal length of its “normal” 75mm lens. At a shooting distance of 1 m and an aperture of f/5.6, the range of acceptable focus is only about 11 cm. By comparison, the range with a “normal” lens on a 35mm SLR is about 14 cm, for a DSLR it’s around 20 cm, and for a P&S digital camera it’s over 30 cm. Those extra centimetres make a big difference.

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