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Depth of Field

Discussion in 'General Technical Discussion' started by Owenh, Jun 4, 2007.

  1. Owenh


    Nov 24, 2006
    Hueytown, Al.
    I have Nikon D80 Camera, I don't understand the DOF button at all and how
    it works!!??? Can somebody please explain this to me? Seems very confusing to me. Thank You.
  2. Logan

    Logan Guest

    it stops the lens down to the desired aperture so that you can more accrately determine DOF (if im correct, if not someone correct me) in digital it is kinda useless, as you can always look at a result and then delete...
  3. I’ll take a stab at this, and if I get it wrong or do a poor job…someone jump in.

    When you look through your viewfinder you are seeing through the lens with the aperture wide open. This results in the narrowest depth of field possible, or it could be said, with the most bokeh (of out of focus background, which is generally considered pleasing). You may have a f/2.8 lens (which has a shallow DOF), but want to shoot it at f/8 to get a deeper DOF for a shot. The DOF preview button stops the lens down to f/8 without taking a shot, so you can see what the depth of field will look like. You viewfinder will also get darker as not as much light is getting in.
  4. Logan, you are on fire my friend! I really need to learn to type faster! My two fingers have been working on that response for twelve minutes! Do they still teach you that in school, or are you just supposed to know having grow up with comptuers and texting.

    Oh geez, there went my 1000th post:eek: 

    Sorry, back on track...I hope this helps with the question. I use the DOF preview every so often, but I chimp a lot and the more I shoot the better judge I have become at DOF before the shot.
  5. Hey Owen -

    Logan is right about it.

    When you look through the viewfinder of any SLR (digital or not), you are seeing the scene as it would be captured with the lens wide open (with its shallowest depth of field).

    The DOF preview button simply stops down the lens to the aperture that you have chosen for the upcoming photo (without firing off the shot) - and the resulting view can help you decide whether all the things you want (or don't want) are in focus or not.

    The image gets darker when you engage the button, so you might need to look at it for a while to be able to judge whether or not that aperture setting captures what you wanted.

    Or, as Logan says, you could simply take the shot, examine it on the LCD (or your monitor) and then decide about whether to change your aperture to have more or less in focus.

  6. Owenh


    Nov 24, 2006
    Hueytown, Al.
    I just got my Field Guide for the camera and I have been reading the book
    and got to that section , and did not understand anything !!! I did not know
    what the other button on the camera was either. Function Button , still do not know what that does. Still learning the camera and feel kinda of stupid,too. Just be patient with me guys, learning slowly but surely.
  7. Don't feel bad, I have three of them and I don't know what the function button does!!!

    OK, I know...kind of, I just don't use it.

    Hey, the journey is part of the fun. If you are a gearhead you are in for a ball.
  8. Huff09


    Feb 25, 2007
    Carmichael, CA
    User Friendly D80 User Guide


    Try Ken Rockwell's site if you are still learning the camera. He has an easy to read/understand user guide for the D80 which I found very useful when I first bought my D80.

    The link below should take you directly to a PDF file you can either download or print. The nice thing about his user guide is he puts everything in pretty easy to understand terms so it's much simpler to read and comprehend what your camera can do.

    He has a section on each and every button on the camera and I think you will find the function button is one of the nicer features. . . I wish the camera had two or three of them.

    Anyway, hope this helps.

  9. laawaaris

    laawaaris Guest

    nikon goes around each year to different places to explain features of cameras like the D200 and D80 ... i went to one and he talked about the function button a lot

    usually the big camera stores in the area are the ones that promote the classes by nikon

    you can check with your camera store to find out

    the basic camera class is good, but its not worth a LONG drive to go and attend if you find they will be within a day's drive from you
  10. Ghunger


    Apr 2, 2007
    Seattle, WA
    You can set the function button to do a number of things through the menu (custom setup menu, menu item #16). I have mine set to turn on spot metering when I hold it down. That way I can keep the camer in matrix or center-weighted and switch to spot on the fly. There are quite a few other things it can do too.
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