Cameras and @#~%$£ Glasses

I hate glasses.

I’ve worn them since I was fourteen and I still hate them.

I have worn contact lenses at some points in my life and used together with cameras they made looking through the viewfinder a pleasure. Then I got older and started to wear varifocals. My close-up sight is OK but my distance sight is not so good.

I have now found that it’s not only spectacles being some distance from the viewfinder that can cause issues ( light getting in the side especially with rangefinder-style cameras), but it seems that the varifocals themselves can cause problems.

I’ll explain.

I am wearing a relatively new pair of glasses – purchased earlier this year. I can see brilliantly with them in near, mid-distance and far-distance. They are varifocals. But, and here’s the thing,  I have never been able to set the dioptre in any of my cameras so everything in the viewfinder was pin-sharp. The same was also true to my previous pair of glasses – also varifocals, but I managed OK thanks to autofocus. But, it was annoying.

When I got my X-T3, I was hoping that this would change and that I would be able to set the dioptre correction to a perfect setting. But I still couldn’t. Just like my other cameras, I could get close to it by mashing my glasses against the viewfinder but it wasn’t quite right. Then I thought I would try the previous pair of glasses two incarnations back. They were a spare pair I kept in the car. They were still the same prescription as my most recent so, to be honest I was expecting the same thing to happen.

Not a bit of it.

With these glasses on, everything in the viewfinder was pin-sharp. So why the difference in the result within the viewfinder? I’m no optician but I actually think that it’s down to the shape of the lenses in the glasses and to the position that the different focal fields have been placed on the lenses to ensure that I can see properly. The pair of glasses that work brilliantly have slightly smaller lenses and so the viewing fields are probably more compressed.

Perhaps that is the difference.


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