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Advice sought: laser as focus aid in night photography.

DtEW

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Hi everyone. I am seeking advice as a non-laser-enthusiast, and I hope my inquiry isn't too banal. I figured laser enthusiasts would be the right people to turn to for expertise on this matter.

I am a photographer that often shoots in near and sometimes total darkness (urbex, not astrophotography). I am seeking a laser to use as a focusing aid. The primary desired qualities are:

1) Discreet - it would be best if the beam and the "splash illumination" would be minimal. Suffice it to say I am not trying to attract attention.

2) A reasonable range - even though most landscapes are shot at infinity focus, I feel that there is something to be gained by, say, being able to achieve focus lock on an object 100ft away. (100ft is more-or-less the magic number, as anything significantly farther at f/8 is better served w/infinity).

Might-be-nice-but-not-a-dealbreaker:

3) A hotshoe mount.

Based on what I know, I'm guessing this is close to what I need... but please feel free to correct me:

I think I need a red laser, and I think I would benefit from something that can project a relatively narrow grid (not particularly narrow between the lines, but narrow in the angle-of-projection). Something that creates sharp, high-contrast edges for the camera to focus on. The grid is probably because a dot might be invisible or extremely hard to find at a distance.

I don't know if there is such a thing as a variable-output laser, but it would seem that longer distances would require higher output, while nearer distance might benefit from a bit of attenuation.

Does anybody have any comments about my thoughts, and/or suggestions for what I should buy?

Much thanks. :)
 

swamidog

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sure. this would be quite easy to do.

you could even start with something as simple as a cheap laser pointer with a cross "+" forming optic.

something like this could be adapted to hot shoe mount and battery operation pretty nicely.

650nm 30mW Red laser module 3IN1 Dot/Line/Crosshair - $66.00 : Laser Pointer,Green laser,Blue laser, Red laser,Buy Laser Pointers,Cheap laser pointer

Hi everyone. I am seeking advice as a non-laser-enthusiast, and I hope my inquiry isn't too banal. I figured laser enthusiasts would be the right people to turn to for expertise on this matter.

I am a photographer that often shoots in near and sometimes total darkness (urbex, not astrophotography). I am seeking a laser to use as a focusing aid. The primary desired qualities are:

1) Discreet - it would be best if the beam and the "splash illumination" would be minimal. Suffice it to say I am not trying to attract attention.

2) A reasonable range - even though most landscapes are shot at infinity focus, I feel that there is something to be gained by, say, being able to achieve focus lock on an object 100ft away. (100ft is more-or-less the magic number, as anything significantly farther at f/8 is better served w/infinity).

Might-be-nice-but-not-a-dealbreaker:

3) A hotshoe mount.

Based on what I know, I'm guessing this is close to what I need... but please feel free to correct me:

I think I need a red laser, and I think I would benefit from something that can project a relatively narrow grid (not particularly narrow between the lines, but narrow in the angle-of-projection). Something that creates sharp, high-contrast edges for the camera to focus on. The grid is probably because a dot might be invisible or extremely hard to find at a distance.

I don't know if there is such a thing as a variable-output laser, but it would seem that longer distances would require higher output, while nearer distance might benefit from a bit of attenuation.

Does anybody have any comments about my thoughts, and/or suggestions for what I should buy?

Much thanks. :)
 




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