Do you want a pinhole for optical quality? Possibly. So what about exposure times or the angle of view?

All the calculations on this page will create the perfect pinhole for photography but remember the joy of pinhole photography is its haphazard nature. Deviations from the "perfect" setup can produce the most interesting effect.

Most cameras use a glass lens to gather and focus light to form an image. A tiny hole can do the same job as a glass lens but with very different effects. Use the PaperCamera.co.uk method to produce perfect pinholes for any pinhole camera project.  


3 Steps to Making Pinholes

 

Step 1

Use a piece of brass or aluminium to make your pinhole. Drinks cans are ideal donor material for pinholes. Place a needle on the centre point and press lightly. A small dimple will appear on the rear. 

Step 2

Slowly and carefully rub the dimple with the abra- sive paper until flat or the pinhole begins to appear. Repeat the process as necessary to obtain the desired pinhole size. 

Step 3

The size of the pinhole can be approximated using a ruler and a magnifying glass or by using a scanner. Per- fect pinhole are completely round. With practise pinholes of 0.2mm or less can be obtained. 

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What size should a pinhole be for photography

Lucky for you the PaperCamera.co.uk boffins brewed an extra strong pot of coffee and stayed up all night calculating the numbers you need to make that "perfect" pinhole.  

All the calculations on this page will create the perfect pinhole for photography but remember the joy of pinhole photography is its haphazard nature. Deviations from the "perfect" setup can produce the most interesting effect.   

A standard lens on a 35mm camera is 50mm. That gives an angle of view similar to the human eye. A 50mm lens on a medium format camera will be a wide angle and on a 4x5 camera it will be ultra wide.  The angle of view in a pinhole camera is related to the the size of the pinhole, its distance from the film and the size of the film. A 0.3mm pinhole will give a "standard" view on 35mm, will be wide on 120 and ultra wide on 4x5.