Back Focus

What is Back Focus in Video Production?

Back focus refers to the process of adjusting the distance between the back end of a camera lens and the image sensor. This adjustment is crucial because it ensures that the camera maintains its focus across varying zoom ranges. In essence, back focus ensures your shots remain crisp and sharp regardless of the zoom level.

Importance of Back Focus

Understanding and applying back focus correctly has several benefits in video production:

  • Maintaining Focus: Proper back focus adjustment ensures your shots remain in focus, regardless of zoom range. This is especially important in professional video production where clarity and sharpness are vital.
  • Preventing Soft Images: Improper back focus could result in soft images, especially when you zoom in. This could significantly compromise the quality of your videos.
  • Ensuring Consistent Quality: With the correct back focus, you can achieve consistent quality throughout your video, irrespective of the zoom level or subject distance from the lens.

How to Adjust Back Focus

Adjusting back focus may vary slightly from camera to camera, but the fundamental steps include:

  • Place an object with distinct lines or edges at a distance from the camera. This object will serve as your focus target.
  • Zoom in on your focus target as much as possible and manually adjust the lens to achieve a sharp, in-focus image.
  • Without adjusting the focus, zoom out to the widest angle. If your focus target remains sharp, your back focus is correct. If it’s out of focus, adjust the back focus ring, not the focus ring, until the image is sharp again.
  • Repeat this process until your focus target remains sharp across all zoom levels.


In conclusion, back focus is a critical aspect of video production that helps maintain the sharpness and clarity of your shots. Whether you are a professional filmmaker, a YouTuber, or simply an enthusiast, understanding and correctly adjusting your camera’s back focus can significantly enhance the quality of your videos.

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