Have you gone to take a picture, focus your lens and find that your seeing a blurry image through the viewfinder, but your photos are still sharp? If this sounds familiar, then the above image is something that you may look familiar.
In fact, this is an image taken through my viewfinder while my lens was still in focus…
At first, I thought my Canon 70D DSLR was malfunctioning and I was close to taking it to get it serviced. But before doing that, I decided to do a bit of digging to see if I could find a solution.
Boy oh boy was I surprised by how simple the fix was!
DSLR Viewfinder Is Blurry, But Images Are Sharp? 3 Simple Fixes!
1. Adjust The Diopter On Your Camera
Up until recently, I had never paid attention to the little plus and minus adjustment next to my viewfinder. But after a bit of digging, I found out that this little scroll wheel is called a diopter which helped fix my blurry viewfinder issue!
In a nutshell, this diopter works like a pair of prescription glasses that goes in front of the lens. So by adjusting this diopter, it controls the optical power of the lens that can either make your viewfinder blurry or sharp. So depending on if someone else has used your camera, the diopter can be unique for each user.
While this adjustment wheel looks slightly different on each camera, they all essentially do the same thing. When adjusting the diopter, I would recommend focusing on some text or other detail where you can get the best sharpness possible.
If all goes well, this should be the one and only fix that you’ll need! If not, here are some more common fixes that have helped other photographers. You can also check out the video that I made below.
2. Replace The Focusing Screen
Upon digging for a fix for my blurry viewfinder, this fix seemed to come up a lot. Originally this was going to be my first option, so I’m glad I found out about the diopter!
A focusing screen is the middle man between your mirror/lens and the viewfinder. Generally it is made of either plastic or glass and is used to generate an in focus view of a subject.
In some cases, the focusing screen can become slightly out of place, blurry or dirty. You can try cleaning it, or placing the screen itself which you can see via the tutorial below. All in all, it should take about 10 minutes. However you will need some specifically designed tools to do so.
3. Clean Your Viewfinder
Last but not least, and maybe the most obvious fix is to clean your actual viewfinder. In some cases it may be dirty or a build up with moisture which can give a blurry look.
I would recommend using a microfibre cloth to clean the viewfinder or any other soft material. Also this is a good step if you think your mirror may have any grime or dirt on it.
Ok, I lied! I have one more step which may help. If all of the above step are not working for you, then it potentially could be your own eyes. One quick way to tell it to get someone else with good eyesight to look through your view finder. This should be a good indication to whether your viewfinder is blurry or not.
If you would like to get the sharpest images possible, I always recommend the use of a sturdy tripod! You can check out my recent article on the best budget tripods which is great for any beginner or advanced photographer.