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Lens breathing?


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#1 Mike Currell

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 05:41 AM

Hi hope this is the right place to ask a newbie question but what is meant by the term "breathing"
As in ....this lens tends to breath a bit....
Thanks in anticipation of an answer
Mike
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#2 Stephen Williams

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 05:46 AM

Hi hope this is the right place to ask a newbie question but what is meant by the term "breathing"
As in ....this lens tends to breath a bit....
Thanks in anticipation of an answer
Mike



The image size gets bigger or smaller when you adjust the focus.
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#3 Serge Teulon

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 06:51 AM

Just to add to Stephen's response. It gives an impression that zooming has taken place.

It's also a sign of a cheap lens.
But as with everything, if used in the right way it becomes a creative tool.
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#4 David Auner aac

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 07:17 AM

It's also a sign of a cheap lens.


And many older, not so cheap zooms!

Also breathing usually more prominent in still lenses as this doesn't really matter for photography (well sometimes it does, but not as much as in cinematography).

Regards, Dave
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#5 Mike Currell

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Posted 21 October 2009 - 05:26 AM

Thanks a lot guys. Understood
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#6 Dean Werner

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 07:13 PM

In my experience the term lens breathing is when the camera tries to focus on its own. In the manual mode it would try to pull its own focus and the focus moves like a breath for a bit. This is on the XL-1 though and I was told was because the camera needs to be cleaned.
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#7 Rob Vogt

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Posted 18 November 2009 - 09:50 PM

I never heard that use for the term Dean. I also experienced a lot of breathing today on a very old 12mm Zeiss prime.
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#8 Mark Bonnington

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Posted 19 November 2009 - 02:37 AM

In my experience the term lens breathing is when the camera tries to focus on its own. In the manual mode it would try to pull its own focus and the focus moves like a breath for a bit. This is on the XL-1 though and I was told was because the camera needs to be cleaned.

That's not breathing, more like short-circuited electronics. Or, it could be called self-instantiated auto-focus hunting with quantized focal drift positioning.

Edited by Mark Bonnington, 19 November 2009 - 02:38 AM.

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#9 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 19 November 2009 - 06:07 AM

And many older, not so cheap zooms!

Also breathing usually more prominent in still lenses as this doesn't really matter for photography (well sometimes it does, but not as much as in cinematography).

Regards, Dave


It's extremely common on most of modern SD & HD video lenses. It's usually the wide angle zooms that tend not to have breathing as a built in feature. Although perhaps there it's reduced to not usually noticeable level. i.e. you have to look for it.
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