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Hyper focal distance



How many IIIC,IIIF, IIIG users rely to a great extent on the hyper focal distance of a lens? I find I do more and more due to age and glasses.[This means to set shutter to film speed, on bright day, select f16, put infinity mark on right f16 on lens and look to f16 on left for range of focus.] John E.L.Robertson


I'm very much a believer in hyperfocal focusing. A Leica is meant for it. I learned a long time ago with a Rollei 35 that learning how to estimate the focusing distance while checking to make sure that your guess falls in the hyperfocal zone is the only way to fly. It's amazing how fast one's mind will adapt if given the chance. One can also easily learn how to estimate exposure as well if you will just try it for a few rolls of film. Once you've become your own meter, you can spend more valuable time looking for the moment in which to capture.


As an SLR user prior to Leica, hyper focusing is a must if you want to call the least attention to carrying such a bulky camera. Hyper focussing can also be altered to F11, infinity to F8. It maximises DOF for added sharpness. Try it on one roll and you'll see the difference.


Hyperfocusing is definitely faster and easier for street shooting. However, it doesn't help much with portraiture and that's where the superior rangefinder of the LTM cameras really comes to the fore. With its 1.5x magnification, an LTM rangefinder is easier to use than on an M camera, assuming that the optics are still in good condition. If the RF patch lacks contrast, it can be improved with a yellow filter over one or the other of the circular RF windows, preferably the one nearest the rewind knob.