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Easy way to test rangefinder accuracy?

Suspect that your rangefinder is giving you incorrect distance readings? In Nov 2000, Sal DiMarco Jnr noted these handy tips on a mailing list:

[…] The late Bob Schwalberg once suggested a quick way to do a rangefinder test: for infinity… focus on a cloud. It is far enough away to be infinity. For closer distances, put a lipstick mark on a mirror ([or] black tape) set your camera to one meter and focus by moving the camera in and out. Once you have focused on one meter, move to the side a bit and refocus on the camera body. The scale should say two meters - if it doesn't then it's off. Finally, as he pointed out, even if your rangefinder is off a little, you lose focus at ƒ2.0 but at ƒ8.0 everything will be fine.

A note about possible broken links

This FAQ has over 900 external links. Over time it is inevitable some of them will break. If you are bothered by this, see this detailed topic elsewhere in the FAQ.

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