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What is hyperfocal distance in photography?

distance in photography

The distance from the camera to the subject, if you focus on that point, you will have the greatest depth of field. It means that from the subject you focus on, it will be behind the focus subject to infinity, and of course, some amount will be in front of the focus subject, which depends on the settings and conditions. In this definition, in fact, the closer we can focus, the closer the elements to the camera will be in focus, and the greater the depth of field. Of course, with the condition that it is in focus from that point to infinity, otherwise we can focus on any nearby object independently. Hyperfocal distance is more useful for landscape photography and nature photography. The hyperfocal distance changes by zooming and changing the aperture, so it is better not to use it in Tv mode in Canon or S in Nikon. In simple cameras that do not have aperture and zoom settings, the hyperfocal distance cannot be changed.

When to use hyperfocal distance?

The hyperfocal distance is only important when you have several objects near and far from the lens and need them all to be sharp enough. Since you’re actually focusing between the two subjects, neither will be perfectly sharp, but both will be reasonably sharp. Also, if some elements are too close to your camera lens, hyperfocal distance will not help you at all.

Hyperfocal distance and camera lens

The hyperfocal distance depends on the opening and closing of the diaphragm and changes if it is opened or closed. If the aperture is too wide, focus on a distant point so that subjects at infinity are also in focus. And if the aperture is closed, the subjects that are far will remain clear, so the closer the aperture is, the closer the superfocal distance is to the lens.

Factors affecting hyperfocal technique

Factors that affect the depth of field determine the hyperfocal distance. These factors include:

  • Aperture: The hyperfocal distance depends on the opening and closing of the aperture. If the aperture is too wide, you have to focus on the far point so that the subjects that are at infinity are also under focus.
  • Focal distance: To have a greater viewing angle, we must have a closer focal length. A short focal length makes the hyperfocal distance closer.
  • Sensor size: One of the important factors in determining the hyperfocal distance is the size of the digital sensor. The larger the digital camera sensor, the closer the hyperfocal distance.

Find the hyperfocal distance

There are techniques to find the hyperfocal distance that can help any landscape photographer, and some of them are very simple. In summary, these techniques are:

  1. Using the chart: To use the chart, select the focal length of a lens and record its focal length. Then choose the aperture value and get the appropriate hyperfocal distance with the chosen focal distance and aperture.
  2. Using the focus scale
  3. Distance equality method
  4. Blur focus method
  5. Using the formula: The formula for calculating the hyperfocal distance is:


Here (H) hyperfocal distance and (f) focal distance; (N) is the aperture number and (c) is the appropriate value (coc).


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