The Newbie’s Information to the Cut up Diopter Lens

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Meg Shields

June 10, 2020A video essay for everybody curious concerning the break up diopter however too afraid to ask.
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Most moviegoers have encountered the break up diopter earlier than. Whether or not or not they level at their screens like Rick Dalton and compulsively blurt out “that’s a break up diopter!” each time they see one might be much less probably. Be warned, that is the trade-off: when you be taught concerning the break up diopter, seeing one within the wild will really feel like Christmas. However not everybody will perceive your pleasure. If that seems like a superb deal to you (and it ought to), buckle up.
Cut up diopter photographs are achieved with a particular lens: a bit of convex glass that successfully renders half of the lens nearsighted whereas the opposite half stays farsighted. This single movie component creates the phantasm of deep focus by preserving two topics at completely different distances in body concurrently. The trick to sussing out whether or not a shot makes use of deep focus or a break up diopter lens is to look within the house between the 2 topics. If the depth of subject is steady, you’re taking a look at a shot with deep focus. In case you see a fuzzy line between the 2 sharp topics, you’ve bought a break up diopter and you’ll open the champagne.
However this stuff are higher seen than described. Fortunately, the video essay beneath from Fandor effectively lays out the historical past and technical mechanics behind the break up diopter.
You may watch “SFX Secrets and techniques: The Cut up Diopter Lens” right here:

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Who made this?
This video essay comes courtesy of Fandor. The San Francisco-based indie-film streaming service/weblog/video essay heavy hitter closed store in 2019 after, you already know, shedding their workers and restructuring their property to a 3rd get together. In case you pop over to Fandor’s web site you’ll be able to see they nonetheless, uh, exist. However their social accounts and YouTube account haven’t been energetic for over a 12 months. Fortunately their video essays are nonetheless free to browse.
Extra Movies Like This

Right here’s PBS Digital Studios’ Shanks FX with a more-hands on demonstration of how a break up diopter lens works
One other from Fandor: “The Artwork of the Focus Pull“
All fifteen of the break up diopter photographs in Blow Out
Right here’s Filmmaker IQ with the science behind deep focus and hyperfocus distance
Woah, woah, woah, wait a minute…what’s hyperfocal distance?
The Nerdwriter has a enjoyable video on the actual pretend cinematography of Toy Story 4, an animated movie that has a “break up diopter” in it
Received 45 minutes to burn? Right here’s Brian De Palma’s Movie Society Speak on the Lincoln Middle

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