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Lens light diameter and background blur


There are three factors that decide how much background blur (bokeh) you can get. This is often appreciated for portrait photography.
  1. The visible diameter of the light coming through the lens (Typical for low F-numbers.)
  2. The more tele it is, the easier it is to make the background really blurry.
  3. Keeping the subject very close, and the background very far away helps blurring the background. Keeping the subject very far away, and the foreground very close helps blurring the foreground.
lenses rear view

Buying guide

Simply open up the aperture all the way, and look at the backside of the lens. Here you can roughly see how much bokeh you should be able to achieve. Left is good, right is poor.

A few examples


Nikkor 55mm F1.2

example


Nikkor 55mm F1.2

example


Sigma 30mm F1.4

example


Website by Joachim Michaelis