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Dan Diaconu M

Member Since 17 Jul 2008
Offline Last Active Mar 14 2011 02:42 AM
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Topics I've Started

What is a "normal"

21 June 2009 - 12:16 PM

I have supported for years the following definition of the "normal" lens:
http://en.wikipedia....iki/Normal_lens

without even thinking about it or trying to check it out. It all seemed so....well... logical and in place and used to it (as is) for soooooo many years.....................
Yet, today I bothered to look trough the viewfinder and discover something doesn't add up.
If "normal" means
1"as seen by the naked eye" but at the same time
2"equal to the diagonal of the format",
well.... Huston, we have a problem!
The two do not seem to go together.
One of the two must go (imo). OMG!!!!!!!!! a landslide.

In practical terms: left eye open, right eye in the viewfinder of an SD10, I panned the camera left/right and found 70 (from a 55-200) as the focal length where the two images were seamlessly blending with each other.
In other words, I captured an image "as seen by the naked eye" with the zoom set at 70.
"As seen by the naked eye" means the same perspective and the same size ratio between the elements (buildings in this case) in the frame.
Although, the frame is much smaller (13.8X20.7 mm) than "normal" SLR (24X36mm), that section photographed looks "normal" (imo) reproduction of what I can SEE. (

I captured another image at 25mm (18-50) and compared the two. The latter looks like a wide angle to me. Two prints on the table: which one is "normal"?

Well than, where does "equal to diagonal of the format" fits in the definition than?

If I may call your attention the "double standard" definition in wiki where "normal" is twice the diagonal for motion picture lenses (accounting for viewing distance they say)
Scaling down the projection distance and screen size to a comparable "picture on the table", shouldn't the rule be the same?

I urge you to set aside any dogma and check it out and see for yourself.
What is "normal" for you? Or.... how do you define "normal" ?


Cheers,
Dan Diaconu

PS. I did the same test as above with a SLR (Nikon) 24X36mm and discovered that 55mm produced an image identical with naked eye.
Not 50, not 45 and not the theoretical 43.26.

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