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Focus to infinity - say what ?!...

Updated: Aug 24, 2023

Unlocking the World Beyond: Understanding and Mastering 'Infinity Focus' in Photography

Have you ever gazed at a breathtaking landscape photograph, where every detail seems sharp and clear, from the foreground to the distant horizon? Chances are, that photographer skillfully harnessed the power of 'infinity focus.' But what exactly is infinity focus, and how can you achieve it to capture stunning images of your own? In this blog post, we'll demystify the concept of setting your lens to infinity and guide you through the steps to achieve this in your photography.

What is Infinity Focus?

Infinity focus refers to setting your camera's lens in such a way that distant objects appear sharp and in focus. It's particularly useful when capturing landscapes, astrophotography, and other scenarios where the subject is far away from the camera. Achieving infinity focus ensures that distant elements aren't blurred or out of focus, resulting in a captivating image that draws viewers into the scene.

How to Set Your Lens to Infinity Focus: Step by Step

Achieving infinity focus might seem complex, but with a little practice, you'll master it in no time. Here's a step-by-step guide to help you get started:

Step 1: Switch to Manual Focus Mode

First, set your camera to manual focus mode. This will allow you to take full control over the focus distance.

Step 2: Find the Infinity Symbol (∞)

Look for the infinity symbol (∞) on your lens. It's often marked on the focus distance scale. Some lenses have a hard stop at the infinity point, while others might allow you to rotate the focus ring indefinitely. Locate this symbol as a reference point.

Step 3: Use Live View for Precision

Engage your camera's live view mode and zoom in on a distant object. This will enable you to fine-tune the focus manually and ensure utmost precision.

Step 4: Adjust the Focus Ring

Gently turn the focus ring on your lens while observing the live view display. Slowly rotate it in the direction of the infinity symbol (∞). Keep an eye on the distant object you've zoomed in on. As you turn the focus ring, the distant object should gradually come into focus. Stop when the object appears sharp and clear in the live view.

Step 5: Fine-Tune and Test

After setting the focus to infinity, take a test shot. Review the image on your camera's display or transfer it to a larger screen for a closer look. If the distant elements are indeed sharp and well-defined, congratulations – you've successfully achieved infinity focus! If not, make slight adjustments to the focus ring until you achieve the desired outcome.

Tips for Perfecting Infinity Focus:

  1. Aperture Matters: Using a smaller aperture (higher f-number) can increase the depth of field, enhancing the overall sharpness of your image.

  2. Use Tripod: Especially for landscape or night photography, a tripod can provide stability, reducing the chances of camera shake.

  3. Practice Makes Perfect: Experiment with infinity focus settings in different scenarios to become more comfortable and skilled at achieving it quickly.

  4. Manual vs. Autofocus Lenses: Keep in mind that not all lenses have a hard stop at infinity. Some autofocus lenses might require you to switch to manual focus mode to set infinity focus accurately.

Unlocking the power of infinity focus can take your photography to new heights, allowing you to capture stunning vistas, starry night skies, and distant wonders with exceptional clarity. Remember, like any skill, practice is key. So, get out there, explore different settings, and master the art of infinity focus to create images that truly mesmerize.


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