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The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle applied to photography: I can see you moving, but never standing still
October 11, 2011 10:05 AM   Subscribe

I do video. I obsessively read lens reviews on photography sites that tend to criticize certain lenses for being soft. Does the lower resolution of the video output (1920x1080) lessen the issues of softer focus that is so troubling on higher resolution stills (e.g., sixteen megapixels and above)

I realize this does not apply to issues such as chromatic aberration and vignetting. I'm just trying to see if I'm writing lenses off that would be great for video because they suffer under still photographers' criteria. Thanks.
posted by history is a weapon to Media & Arts (1 answer total)
 
Well, there's a lot of different things that make a good lens or a bad lens.

In answer to your question, Yes. The lower resolution output of video lessens the issues of focus that is soft.

That said, there are a lot of other considerations besides sharpness that do affect video. I be most concerned with the issue of lens flare and contrast.

I recently purchased a canon 35mm f2 lens because I couldn't quite justify the expense of the f1.4L series lens. As far as sharpness goes for video, under ideal lighting conditions, either lens would be a fine choice.

But the cheap 35mm f2 lens has TERRIBLE lens flare problems. Shoot someone standing in front of a bright window and the whole image gets washed out.

So, yeah, I wouldn't worry about sharpness, but you're still going to be better off with the more expensive lenses that are sharper anyway because they have superior performance in non-ideal lighting conditions.
posted by j03 at 11:38 AM on October 11, 2011


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