Understanding the modulation transfer function

Posted By on Dec 7, 2016 |

Before you start choosing the MTF testing services www.image-science.com that you wanted to hire, it is very important that you feed yourself a lot of information about the modulation transfer function and how it characterizes the performance of the imaging system.

What is modulation transfer function?

The quality of an image when it comes to the vision system is the measurement of how you can extract the information easily from the resulting image that you have. The image quality is now quantified through the resolution because it is the measurement of the details of the object that can be detected using the system. To put it simply, the lenses with high quality has the ability in transferring more contrast even at high frequencies compared to lenses with poor qualities.

Therefore, the capability of the imaging system in transferring the contrast of the object at a certain frequency level is often quantified using the modulation transfer function. For instance, if the object has 1005 of contrast, then the modulation transfer function will serve as the plot of the contrast of the image versus the frequency of the object. Now, the idea where in the resolution cannot be specified without the presence of the contrast level does not make any sense at all. Both of them should be utilized and incorporated into the specification of the modulation transfer function.

What are the advantages of the modulation transfer function?

If you can determine the quality of an image regarding modulation transfer function, it can present several advantages if you’d compared it using other known methods. For instance, we all know that the modulation transfer function is some objective measurement. If you’d compare it to the traditional methods, the complete opposite of it, you can say that it will rely more on the visual testing. The operator will now judge the quality of the lens based on their observation from different targets. Because humans will eventually have some difficulty when it comes to gauging the contrast visually, the visual tests that are used are the means of identifying the highest frequency the operator will be able to see.

Therefore, all the results will just depend on the operator himself as well as the fatigue level of the operator. This method will not also be able to indicate contrast levels even at lower frequencies that is considered the main problem when it comes to the application because the contrast in lower frequencies is much more important compared to the limiting resolution. This is relatively true in any imaging applications that will sample a signal.

It is also helpful when it comes to the integration of the system because there are several components that are in the imaging system that is all linked with the modulation transfer function. This is relatively true, especially for the lens and camera. In short, the modulation transfer function is the fruition of the component MTFs only.