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camera for eyesight issues?

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by Kosta, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. Kosta

    Kosta Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 29, 2010
    Hi wonderful members of mu-43.

    after having a few recent eye tests, i have found that I have reasonably strong astigmatism in my left eye, whilst my right eye is still quite good.
    I've been told I need glasses (with anti-glare coatings) for reading backlit subjects and using computers/tvs and driving at night (for oncoming headlights possibly affecting my left eye).

    that said, I now wish my e-pl1 did have a mirror, so I wouldn't need electronic viewfinders etc by which to focus my nokton 25. :( 

    my question is, does anyone out there have similar issues, and how do you get around it to keep up your photography? other than use analogue tools?

    I have to stare at screens enough throughout the day...and here i am on the computer once again!
  2. Brianetta

    Brianetta Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 5, 2010
    North East England
    Brian Ronald
    Both my eyes are astigmatic, and I can't bring my eyes into correct focus without my glasses, at any distance. This makes viewfinders much less effective; they have a dioptre adjuster, but can't correct for astigmatism. Contacts are out of the question, because if they turn, they exacerbate the problem.

    The solution? The screen on the back of the camera. Not that I'd use a viewfinder anyway. (-:

    Astigmatism affects poeple in different ways, though. The only problem I have with backlit subjects is when my eyes are uncorrected. Point lights are smeared into horizontal lines. When corrected, it's corrected properly and completely.
    • Like Like x 1
  3. grebeman

    grebeman Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2010
    South Brent, south Devon (UK)
    I also suffer from astigmatism, which on my last eye test was getting worse. I now have an additional problem in my left eye having just been diagnosed with vitreous detachment. At the moment that is just resulting in distracting floaters in the eye rather like a manic trapeze artist swinging across my line of sight. I am awaiting an appointment to closely examine my retina to see if any damage has occurred to it.

    I use varifocal lenses in my glasses which is probably not a good thing when trying to focus using the eye piece. Focus tends to vary as to where you position your eye in relation top the centre of the eye piece. Unlike Brianetta I have the impression that it's more difficult to focus using the LCD screen, although I've done some close up photography this morning where I was forced to use that technique.

    I am currently reassessing my use of longer focal length adapted lenses which I am now struggling to focus accurately and so I am considering biting the bullet and possibly selling those lenses off and concentrating on the use of native lenses for normal and longer focus work, retaining my adapted wide angle lenses for landscape photography for example where scale focusing can be used successfully.

    Even when younger I always found SLR focusing using a split prism or microprisms very difficult, which is why I really loved my old Leica M3 with it's rangefinder focusing, that was independent of eyesight problems such as astigmatism or poorly corrected general vision problems, it was so easy to judge the co-incidence of the focus rectangle, a true rangefinder focusing system would attract my attention in terms of a vision defect friendly camera.

    • Like Like x 1
  4. Kosta

    Kosta Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 29, 2010
    thanks Briannetta and Barrie for sharing.

    Barrie, that's one of the reasons I was looking toward the x100 - autofocus and rangefinder. poor mans fixed lens leica etc. save having to stare at an lcd/evf.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. grebeman

    grebeman Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2010
    South Brent, south Devon (UK)
    Yes, I've been keeping a close watch on the development of that camera as well for the same reasons, bidding my time at the moment and deciding which direction to take.

    • Like Like x 1
  6. BBW

    BBW Super Moderator Emeritus

    Kosta, I have astigmatisms in both eyes and some other issues as well. I forget what it is called but think of a carpet that just won't lay flat on the floor no matter how you try to smooth it out. Laser surgery will not help me. I wear what we call "progressive lenses" and have since about 1997. I now have a second pair of glasses for working on my photographs on my computer. I should get a larger monitor.

    1. Go to the best opthamologist around and then go to the best place that makes glasses and do not settle for them unless they work properly. Sometimes it can take quite a bit of tweaking to get the prescription right. Sometimes one needs prisms in one's glasses or just one lens...

    2. When I had my PEN with the EVF I found it spectacularly good.

    3. Make sure the LCD screen on whichever camera you want is a good one. I, too, am in the market for the X100 and hoping that the combination viewfinder plus the great sounding screen will be the ticket.

    I haven't seen the E-PL2's screen but I hear it is quite good. I have been told that the NEX5 has a fantastic screen plus that it has a "sunny mode" that allows one to see extremely well, especially in bright light. So it is possible that the NEX5 would work for you with your legacy lenses... I don't know, I have no personal experience, I've just heard tell.

    Ideally, those of us with our various eyesight challenges should really check out different cameras in real life before choosing them, though I know that's not always possible.

    I hope your new glasses will be a big help, Kosta! You may find that things will be better than you think.
    • Like Like x 1
  7. bilzmale

    bilzmale Mu-43 All-Pro

    I just have old eyes and a recent PVD like Barrie but in my right VF eye. I've just been tested and setup with 'computer' glasses so that keyboard and screen are in focus. I have to peep to type! So far it hasn't really affected my photos (I think).
    • Like Like x 2
  8. shoturtle


    Oct 15, 2010
    i have it in my right eye, so I shoot primarily with my left eye. I do wear glass and shoot mostly with the vf-2, and have no problem with it against the lens. Once you train your good eye to handle the info. It does not feel off anymore. But at first is really feels wrong.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    I have astigmatism in my right on, though slight.

    I think BBW is spot on, especially about the glasses part. I finally gave up on glasses because they made things worse than better(geometry issues).
    • Like Like x 1
  10. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010
    I LOVE manual focus lenses...I also have astigmatism in both eyes AND I have a stable central serous retinopathy in my right eye (meaning I see distortion of straight lines as well as a blurry patch in the upper left quadrant). After many trips to the ophthalmologist and optometrist I finally got a pair of glasses that work great. It also turns out that I am very visually sensitive (according to the doctors) so very small tweaks in my prescription apparently make a big difference to me and finding an eye doctor willing to tweak the prescription was key.

    I have a bunch of different cameras. Some like the OM1 and OM2 that have enormous viewfinders and a bunch of rangefinders (although no Leica). I have thought about the X100 as well as I have always found RF focusing to be easier than focusing an SLR (although the VF on the OM1 and OM2 is pretty great). Currently the EPL-1 with the VF2 gives me good results. I have found using the zoom feature in the viewfinder really makes the process of focusing a lot simpler. It took some getting used to but now it has become second nature.

    FWIW the rear LCD on the EPL-2 is a lot better than the EPL-1 but neither is better than the VF2.
    • Like Like x 1
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