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Drone Photography: Blur and Focus

Autel drones have high-definition 4K camera drones and leading 6K camera drones, which are loved by many drone photographers. Here, we will introduce two concepts about drone photography: blur and focus.

The lens of a drone is usually fixed, and the lens focal length, aperture size, and sensor size are not replaceable. Most photographers shoot with their original settings and do not change to manual photography mode. When the drone is too fast, my images become unclear. Is it blurry or out of focus?

Drone lens blur and out-of-focus are two concepts that are often confused together, but the terms blur and out-of-focus cannot be equated. The factors causing them are different, and the processing methods are also different.

Difference Between Blur and Focus

Blur issues and techniques are based on camera shutter speed.

Focus issues and tricks come from the lens of your camera.

Ambiguous type

Motion blur (also known as subject blur) - The streaks of the main subject in a photo are blurred, while the rest of the image appears sharp (and vice versa).

Intentional motion blur can enhance the dynamic nature of a photo, and when a drone operator wants to demonstrate rapid movement of a subject, slowing down the shutter speed can allow the subject to show movement while other elements in the image remain sharp.

Camera blur (also known as camera shake) – If you suffer from camera shake, you’ll almost certainly find that your entire image is blurry from edge to edge.

Camera blur is usually blur caused by camera movement rather than poor focus. Purchasing a camera drone with a three-axis gimbal will effectively reduce the shaking problem caused by the movement of the drone camera.

Camera blur

Zoom Blur – This blur occurs when the drone is flown forward or backward and using a longer (slower) shutter speed.

Zoom blur can be effectively used as an artistic technique. When the camera is set to a slower shutter speed, the drone must fly toward or away from the intended subject.

Good Focus – We often say a photo is “sharp” when its subject is in focus, regardless of other elements in the foreground or background.

Good Focus

Out of Focus – The intended subject of the photo is not “sharp.” The camera lens focuses on the wrong area of the frame.

Autel drones allow you to choose between tapping the screen, automatic continuous focus (AFC), and manual focus. And Autel EVO Nano+/EVO Lite drones use PDAF+CDAF focusing, which can quickly achieve autofocus.

Additionally, other factors that affect image clarity include: lens resolution, sensor resolution, lens cleanliness, microscratches on the lens, filter quality and cleanliness, lens or sensor moisture condensation. Atmospheric haze and lens flare issues are sometimes confused with focus issues.

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