I can't get "depth of field" to work as expected in version 2.68. Here are the steps I'm taking (from a brand new file):

  1. I clone the default cube a few times, and place all the cubes in a row.
  2. I go to the camera's settings, and select a cube on which to focus in the "Depth of Field" section.
  3. I switch to compositing mode and check the "use nodes" box.
  4. I add a "Defocus" node in between the "Render Layers" node and the "Composite" node.
  5. I also connect the "Z" output from the "Render Layers" node to the "Z" input of the "Defocus" node.
  6. I render. When the image finally goes through the compositing process, I can see the cubes, and blurring occurs, but the camera is NOT focused on the cube I selected in the camera settings.

I've tried this both in the Blender internal renderer and in Cycles. What am I doing wrong?

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ As described here, you also need to enable "Use Z-Buffer". $\endgroup$ – Aldrik Jul 21 '13 at 20:05
  • $\begingroup$ Adrik, I think your suggestion was the one that worked. Can you submit it as an answer? Thanks! $\endgroup$ – jrc03c Jul 21 '13 at 20:56
  • $\begingroup$ Since the answer there works and the issues are pretty much the same. It is now basically a duplicate of that question. $\endgroup$ – iKlsR Jul 22 '13 at 12:59

I do not know why, but it seems that using an object as a focal point only works when using an Empty.

enter image description here


(Note that cycles will render with DoF without the need for composite nodes.)

enter image description here

Setting Blades to 3 or more makes it possible to render with a non-circular aperture (this setting refers to the number of "blades" in the camera's aperture)

enter image description here

Blender Internal:

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Note this answer is specifically relating to Blender Internal. However, the main concepts can be used in Cycles as well.

Setting up the defocus node can take a little bit of practice (and trial and error), but the main issue is the distance. I personally would recommend using fStop settings, because I think fStop makes more sense (you can use fStop if you check Use Z-Buffer).

Using the same setup as you mentioned in your question, change the fStop distance until it looks good (probably around 6).

fStop at 0.0: fstop 0

fStop at 4.0: fstop 4

fStop at 10.0: fstop at 10

You can also tweak the threshold of the blur and the maximum amount of blur allowed.


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