Resolution of human eye?

engelking at engelking at
Sat Jan 18 16:03:16 EST 1997

> The receptor spacing on the retina is not the only thing that determines the
> resolution of the human eye.
> First, the receptor density is highly variable; it varies based on the
> position on the retina where it is measured (receptor spacing is shortest in
> fovea and increases as you move outward from the retina) and it varies by
> individual.  Second, the optics of the eye have an effect on the "resolution
> of the human eye".  It turns out, for example, that the resolution that you
> can calculate based on average foveal receptor spacing is somewhere around
> 60-65 cycles per degree, but the optics of the eye reduce the average
> *usable* resolution somewhat.  This is because the lens blurs the image, like
> low-pass filtering.  Third, usable resolution in a given situation is
> affected by amount of light available and the contrast of the pattern being
> viewed.
> That said, I believe that the usual number quoted for resolution under
> optimal conditions, for the minimum separation between the centers of
> adjacent dark and light bars, is about 0.5 minute of arc.

Why isn't it that scientists studying optics can develop a camera lens and
recording system with roughly the same resolution as the human eye? I
mean, can't we learn anything from its incredible power?

engelking at

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