dept of field on video

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by roslee7, Oct 12, 2010.

  1. roslee7 macrumors regular

    Jun 20, 2006
    i am using my iphone4 or canon ixus 100 to make some vacation video. Can anyone tell me to blur the background or depth of field as in the higher scale camcorder? i am using imovie 9 or final cut express
  2. -DH macrumors 65816

    Nov 28, 2006
    Nashville Tennessee
    The smaller the image sensor, the deeper the depth-of-field. It would be impossible to emulate the depth-of-field of a film or pro camera with either of the cameras you mentioned. About the best you could do would be to move in as close to the subject as possible, while also being zoomed in as much as possible.

    Depth-of-field is controlled by many factors, the three most commonly controllable are:

    • Distance of focal plane to subject; the less distance, the greater the depth-of-field.

    • Focal length of the lens: the greater the focal length of the lens , the greater the depth-of-field.

    • Iris setting: the wider the aperture opening, the greater the depth-of-field.

  3. roslee7 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 20, 2006
    thanks so much. actually i knew a bit about that and lenses also play important part. i think higher DSLR camera like canon can do that. i know its impossible to do that in iphone 4 but just asking if final cut pro or imovie or other software can manually blur it or dept of field.
  4. handsome pete macrumors 68000

    Aug 15, 2008
    It's not so much the lens as it is the size of the sensor. The lens allows you to control the depth of field, but the amount of range you have available depends on the sensor. DSLRs use APS-C and full frame sized sensors whereas the consumer camcorder counterparts are often equipped with 1/3" chips or smaller. That's why they have become so popular for video.

    It is possible to simulate depth of field in post production. I doubt iMovie offers a way and I suspect Final Cut Express would be limited in its abilities as well. You'd be better off with a dedicated compositing program like After Effects, Motion, Combustion, etc. And even then, it could be quite a time consuming task.
  5. LethalWolfe macrumors G3


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles
    You can try to mimic depth of field in post by selectively blurring areas of the frame but it can be very difficult and time consuming for results that will many times just look like you blurred part of the image and not like shallow DoF.


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