Raspberry Pi HQ Camera + 16 MM 10 MP Lens: Depth of Field

Part of the motivation for getting a Raspberry Pi HQ camera sensor was being able to use lenses with adjustable focus and aperture, like the Official 10 MP “telephoto” lens:

RPi HQ Camera - aperture demo setup
RPi HQ Camera – aperture demo setup

Yes, it can focus absurdly close to the lens, particularly when you mess around with the back focus adjustment.

With the aperture fully open at f/1.4:

RPi HQ Camera - aperture demo - f 1.4
RPi HQ Camera – aperture demo – f 1.4

Stopped down to f/16:

RPi HQ Camera - aperture demo - f 16
RPi HQ Camera – aperture demo – f 16

The field of view is about 60 mm (left-to-right) at 150 mm. Obviously, arranging the camera with its optical axis more-or-less perpendicular to the page will improve everything about the image.

For normal subjects at normal ranges with normal lighting, the depth of field works pretty much the way you’d expect:

At f/1.4, focused on the potted plants a dozen feet away:

Raspberry Pi HQ Camera - outdoor near focus
Raspberry Pi HQ Camera – outdoor near focus

Also at f/1.4, focused on the background at infinity:

Raspberry Pi HQ Camera - outdoor far focus
Raspberry Pi HQ Camera – outdoor far focus

In comparison, the laptop camera renders everything equally badly (at a lower resolution, so it’s not a fair comparison):

Laptop camera - outdoors
Laptop camera – outdoors

Stipulated: these are screen captures of “movies” from raspivid over the network to VLC. The HQ sensor is capable of much better images.

None of this is surprising, but it’s a relief from the usual phone sensor camera with fixed focus (at “infinity” if you’re lucky) and a wide-open aperture.

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