September 30, 2023


How Art Works

Photographer Builds Hybrid Viewfinder with Digital Overlay for Smartphones

3 min read

Because the developments made with mirrorless digicam methods and their digital viewfinders, cameras with optical viewfinders have grow to be considerably uncommon, with hybrid viewfinders being even tougher to seek out. This is the reason Getschmann determined to dive into his physics and engineering background to build one from scratch for his smartphone digicam.

On this twenty-seven minute video initially noticed by Hackaday, creator and YouTuber Christopher Getschmann exhibits us his path to constructing a really hybrid viewfinder for mirrorless cameras and smartphones, impressed by the Hybrid system discovered within the Fujifilm X100. All through the video, Getschmann goes into nice element on the physics and science behind your entire course of, and why he felt the necessity to go “old-school” and construct out this challenge.

Getschmann says within the video, “I wished to know the right way to make one myself for a challenge and that data was surprisingly arduous to seek out. Right here I share what I realized and clarify (via a historic perspective) how one can get to the flowery fashionable hybrid viewfinder.” He then poses the query, “Why use a viewfinder in any respect if in case you have a show with a stay sensor readout?” And his reply goes deeper than simply nostalgia.

The design utilized by Getschmann leverages an attention-grabbing mixture of lenses and “beamsplitters” positioned in a 3D-printed enclosure that’s all merely press-fitted to keep away from utilizing something overly fancy or the requirement of glues and adhesives. Getschmann says he tries to keep away from these glues as even the tiniest quantity of superglue will create sufficient vapor to completely blur any glass floor within the neighborhood.

As soon as assembled, your entire factor slides over one facet of the smartphone and combines an optical view of the scene that matches the digicam’s discipline of view with a small digital overlay from the telephone’s display screen which incorporates some pointers and a gyroscope/tilt indicator that Getschmann programmed himself. Within the video, he says that including further data will be simply completed and could be value programming, however he had wished to sort out the opposite optical points first.

There’s a lot of science and a few nice guides included on this intensive video for these excited about studying extra about viewfinders and the science behind the glass optics concerned in these methods, however for individuals who wish to simply get to the precise DIY construct portion of the video, you’ll be able to bounce forward to the 23-minute mark to see the ultimate construct.

Regardless of making a enjoyable and practical completed product, Getschmann says there are nonetheless just a few kinks to get ironed out within the design with the biggest being some vital distortion and chromatic aberration on the digital overlay which he says is usually because of the lack of further lenses in between to cancel out these errors. Maybe in some future replace it would present house for these lenses to assist repair this. Even with the slight flaws, the deep dive into the viewfinder optics is kind of attention-grabbing and well worth the watch.

See extra of Geschmann’s movies on his YouTube channel right here.

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