Viewfinder display apparatus

Abstract

A viewfinder display apparatus which can realize superimpose having good visibility without giving uncomfortable feeling to a photographer is disclosed. The viewfinder display apparatus includes an eyepiece lens unit, an a member on which illumination unit which irradiates illumination light, and a plurality of region display sections arranged in a viewfinder optical path respectively to correspond to the focus detection regions. Each of the region display sections includes an outer frame which partially transmits light from an object to display edges of the focus detection regions in the viewfinder field and reflecting region in which reflecting surface which reflects illumination light from the illumination unit to guide the reflected light to the eyepiece lens unit are formed.

Claims

1 . A viewfinder display apparatus which displays an optical image and which can display focus detection, region, comprising: an eyepiece lens unit; an illumination unit which irradiates illumination light; and a member on which a region display section arranged in a viewfinder optical path, wherein the region display section includes a square outer frame which seamlessly surrounds the focus detection region and a reflecting region which is surrounded by the outer frame and includes a reflecting surface reflecting illumination light from the illumination unit to guide the reflected light to the eyepiece lens unit. 2 . A viewfinder display apparatus according to claim 1 , wherein the outer frame comprises a plurality of prisms. 3 . A viewfinder display apparatus according to claim 1 , further comprising a mirror unit which is arranged above the member at positions being adjacent to the eyepiece lens unit and which guides light from an object to the eyepiece lens unit, and wherein the illumination unit is arranged above the eyepiece lens unit. 4 . A viewfinder display apparatus according to claim 1 , wherein the member is a focusing screen. 5 . A viewfinder display apparatus according to claim 1 , wherein the reflecting surface is subjected to a reflective deposition process. 6 . A viewfinder display apparatus according to claim 1 , wherein, the reflecting surface is smaller than region surrounded by the outer frame. 7 . A viewfinder display apparatus according to claim 1 , wherein the reflecting surface is formed to have circular shape, and the diameter of the reflecting surface is smaller than 0.2 mm. 8 . A viewfinder display apparatus according to claim 1 , wherein the reflecting surface is a set of microscopic reflecting surfaces. 9 . A camera comprising: the viewfinder display apparatus according to claim 1; and a mirror member which guides light from an object to the viewfinder display apparatus.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION [0001] 1. Field of the Invention [0002] The present invention relates to a viewfinder display apparatus having a superimpose display function which displays a focus detection region selected from a plurality of focus detection regions set in a viewfinder field. [0003] 2. Description of the Related Art [0004] A conventional camera having a superimpose display function which is proposed in Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. H01(1989)-277225 or Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. H05(1993)-333259 is known. In such a conventional camera, a flux of light emitted from an illumination unit arranged in front of a pentaprism is reflected by a quick return mirror constituted by a half mirror through a projection lens to illuminate a plurality of display units arranged on a focusing screen. [0005] In a observing apparatus proposed in Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. H04(1992)-278931, an illumination unit is arranged in a frontal region of a pentaprism to cause illumination light emitted from the illumination unit to transmit through the pentaprism, so that a display body on the focusing screen is irradiated. [0006] In addition, in an optical apparatus proposed in Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. H10(1998)-048733, a focusing point display section corresponding to a focusing point is set in an information display section in a viewfinder which displays a shutter speed and a aperture value. [0007] However, in the camera disclosed in Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. H01(1989)-277225 or Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. H05(1993)-333259, an optical path extending from an illumination unit to a focusing screen is so long that a flux of light from the illumination unit is repeatedly refracted and reflected by a projection lens, a main mirror, or the like many times. Furthermore, since the main mirror is constituted by a half mirror, optical waveguide efficiency is considerably poor. [0008] In addition, in the camera described above, an arrangement space for the projection lens or the like is required, and an adjusting operation for a flux of light emitted from the illumination unit must be performed. For this reason, the camera increases in size and cost to deteriorate the productivity. [0009] On the other hand, when a focal point detection frame is entirely illuminated with LED light, although bright-light shooting can be performed without any problem, a section gleaming with the LED light adversely affects the display in the viewfinder field in photographing in the dark. For this reason, a photographer who looks into the viewfinder may bothersomely see the display in the viewfinder. [0010] In the observing apparatus disclosed in Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. H04(1992)-278931, since light from the illumination unit illuminates a focusing screen through the pentaprism, the optical path becomes short, and optical waveguide efficiency is improved. However, since the illumination unit is arranged in the frontal region of the pentaprism, it is difficult to arrange a built-in flashlight-emitting unit in the frontal region of the pentaprism. [0011] The display body on the focusing screen is constituted by a mirror surface, and does not transmit object light. For this reason, when an observer looks into the viewfinder, a part of an object image corresponding to the display body is blacked out. For example, when the display body on the focusing screen is formed in the shape of two lines, a cross, or the like, the observer is hard to see the object image depending on the shape of the display body. [0012] In the optical apparatus disclosed in Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. H10(1998)-048733, since a focusing point display section corresponding to a focusing point is set in a conventional in-viewfinder information display section which displays a shutter speed and a aperture value outside a viewfinder field, a selected focusing point can be displayed without increasing cost. However, since the position of the focusing point display section is different from an actual focusing point displayed in the viewfinder field, the visibility of the focusing point is not up much. SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION [0013] It is an object of the present invention to provide a viewfinder display apparatus and a camera which can improve productivity by reducing cost and size and making adjustment of illumination light unnecessary and which can realize superimpose having good visibility without giving uncomfortable feeling to a photographer. [0014] In order to achieve the above object, a viewfinder display apparatus which displays an optical image and which can display a plurality of focus detection regions includes an eyepiece lens unit, an illumination unit which irradiates illumination light, and a member on which a plurality of region display sections arranged in a viewfinder optical path to respectively correspond to the focus detection regions. Each of the region display sections includes an outer frame which partially transmits light from an object to display edges of the focus detection regions in the viewfinder field and reflecting region in which reflecting surface which reflects illumination light from the illumination unit to guide the reflected light to the eyepiece lens unit are formed. [0015] he outer frame comprises a plurality of prisms. The viewfinder display apparatus includes a mirror unit which is arranged above the member at positions being adjacent to the eyepiece lens unit and which guides light from an object to the eyepiece lens unit. The illumination unit is arranged above the eyepiece lens unit. [0016] The member is a focusing screen. The reflecting surface is subjected to a reflective deposition process. The reflecting region is smaller than region surrounded by the outer frame. [0017] The reflecting surface is formed to have circular shape, and the diameter of the reflecting surface is smaller than 0.2 mm. The reflecting surfaces are a set of microscopic reflecting surfaces. [0018] The illumination unit comprises a plurality of light-emitting portions corresponding to each of the region display sections to illuminate the selected region display section. [0019] The reflecting region is arranged in the outer frame. [0020] A viewfinder display apparatus which displays an optical image and which can display a plurality of focus detection regions includes an eyepiece lens unit, an illumination unit which irradiates illumination light, and a member on which a plurality of region display sections arranged in a viewfinder optical path respectively to correspond to the focus detection regions. Each of the region display sections includes a reflecting region which is formed at portion of the region display section and which reflects illumination light from the illumination unit to guide the reflected light to the eyepiece lens unit. The reflecting region is formed to have convex shape and includes a plurality of microscopic prisms each of which has an inclined surface at the distal end of the reflecting region. [0021] A camera according to the present invention includes the viewfinder display apparatus according to the present invention, and a mirror member which guides light from an object to the viewfinder display apparatus. [0022] The characteristic features of the viewfinder display apparatus according to the present invention and the camera according to the present invention will be apparent from the following explanation of embodiments with reference to drawings. BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS [0023] FIG. 1 is a longitudinal cross-sectional view of a camera according to this embodiment. [0024] FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view which explains an illumination system for superimposition in the camera according to this embodiment. [0025] FIGS. 3 (A) and 3 (B) are perspective views in the camera according to a first embodiment and an enlarged view of a central focal point detection frame. [0026] FIGS. 4 (A) and 4 (B) are perspective views in the camera according to the first embodiment and an enlarged view of a left focal point detection frame. [0027] FIG. 5 is a view in a viewfinder field in the camera according to the first embodiment. [0028] FIG. 6 is an enlarged view of a reflecting region in this embodiment. [0029] FIG. 7 is a longitudinal cross-sectional enlarged view of a reflecting region of a central focal point detection frame in this embodiment. [0030] FIGS. 8 (A) and 8 (B) are perspective views in a second embodiment and an enlarged view of a central focal point detection frame. [0031] FIG. 9 is a longitudinal cross-sectional enlarged view of a reflecting region of a central focal point detection frame in this embodiment. [0032] FIG. 10 is a view in a viewfinder field in the camera according to the second embodiment. DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS First Embodiment [0033] A camera according to the first embodiment of the present invention will be described below with reference to the accompanying drawings and the like. [0034] FIG. 1 is a longitudinal cross-sectional view of a camera according to this embodiment. Object light L transmitting through a photographing optical system (image-forming optical system) (not shown) is reflected by a main mirror (half mirror) 2 and then guided to a viewfinder optical system when the main mirror 2 is at an observing position (mirror-down position) as shown in FIG. 1 . On the other hand, when the main mirror 2 is retreated from a photographing optical path, the object light L transmits through a focal plane shutter 7 and then forms an image on a film F. An image-pickup element such as CCD may be used instead of film. [0035] A focusing screen 3 is arranged on a planned image-forming surface of the photographing optical system, and has an upper surface which is constituted by a mat surface 3 a to project an object image. The lower side of the focusing screen 3 is constituted by a Fresnel surface 3 b which converges object light. Seven focus detection regions are formed on the focusing screen 3 as will be described below. [0036] A hollow penta mirror 4 and a third reflecting mirror 5 converts the object image projected on the focusing screen 3 into a correct image to guide the correct image to an eyepiece lens unit 6 . A photographer can observe the object image through the eyepiece lens unit 6 . [0037] A known photometric lens 8 and a photometric sensor 9 for measuring an object luminance are arranged above the eyepiece lens unit 6 . An in-viewfinder information display LCD 10 which is used to display photographing information outside a viewfinder field, an in-viewfinder information display LED 11 , and a triangular prism 12 which is used to guide transmitted light from the LCD 10 are arranged under the eyepiece lens unit 6 . [0038] An illumination mechanism for superimpose display is arranged between the hollow penta mirror 4 and the photometric lens 8 . The details of the illumination mechanism will be described below with reference to FIGS. 2 and 3 . A sub-mirror 13 is arranged on the back of the main mirror 2 . This sub-mirror 13 reflects a flux of light transmitting through the main mirror 2 toward a focal point detection unit 15 arranged on the lower side of a camera body 1 . The focal point detection unit 15 is constituted by a field lens 15 a arranged near an image-forming surface, a reflecting mirror 15 b, an aperture diaphragm 15 c, a secondary image-forming lens 15 d, and an AF sensor 15 f. [0039] The focal point detection unit 15 in this embodiment, a focal point adjusting state is detected by using a known phase shift detection method. As shown in FIG. 5 , a plurality of regions (seven) in an observed screen (in the viewfinder field) are set as focus detection regions. [0040] An accessory shoe 17 is arranged on the upper surface of the camera body 1 immediately above a lens optical axis. A camera accessory such as an external flashlight emitting device is attached to the accessory shoe 17 , so that the camera body 1 can mutual communicate with the flashlight emitting device. [0041] A light-emitting unit 20 of the flashlight emitting device built in the camera body 1 is constituted by an Xe tube 20 a which converts electric energy into optical energy, a reflecting umbrella 20 b and a panel 20 c which are used to efficiently converge light emitted from the Xe tube 20 a onto an object side, and a trigger coil 20 d which applies a voltage to the Xe tube 20 a so that the light emitting starts. [0042] The light-emitting unit 20 of the flashlight emitting device is accommodated in a frontal region of the hollow penta mirror 4 in an inactive state as shown in FIG. 1 . In an active state, the light-emitting unit 20 is clockwise pivoted about a hinge shaft (not shown) in FIG. 1 and popped up above the camera body 1 . [0043] FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view of an illumination mechanism for superimpose display according to this embodiment. An LED 30 for superimpose illumination is constituted by seven chip-type LEDs (a LED-C_ 30 a , a LED-L 1 _ 30 b , a LED-L 2 _ 30 c , a LED-R 1 _ 30 d , a LED-R 2 _ 30 e , a LED-T_ 30 f , and a LED-B_ 30 g ) which are arranged to correspond to seven focus detection regions formed on the focusing screen 3 , respectively. [0044] A diffusion plate 31 diffuses illumination light from the LED 30 for superimpose illumination to widen an illumination range, and functions to make it difficult to see the shadow or the like of a wire bonding formed in manufacturing of the LED 30 when an object is illuminated. An aperture diaphragm 32 represses ghost from being generated by unnecessary illumination light from the LED 30 for superimpose illumination. [0045] A prism 33 for superimpose is subjected to a reflective deposition process on a reflecting surface 33 a . The reflecting surface 33 a reflects illumination light from the LED 30 to guide the illumination light from an opening portion 4 a of the hollow penta mirror 4 into the hollow penta mirror 4 . The illumination lights from the LEDs 30 a to 30 g are irradiated on the focus detection regions formed on the focusing screen 3 . [0046] The illumination light from the LED 30 is irradiated from the rear surface side of the camera body 1 onto the hollow penta mirror 4 as shown in FIG. 1 , and the illumination light transmits through the hollow penta mirror 4 and is guided onto the focusing screen 3 . With this configuration, since the optical path of the illumination light from the LED 30 is shortened, optical waveguide efficiency is improved. [0047] FIG. 3 (A) is a perspective view showing a manner of actually illuminating the focal point detection frames of the focusing screen 3 with illumination light from the LED 30 for superimpose illumination. In FIG. 3 (A), the hollow penta mirror 4 and the third reflecting mirror 5 are shown as cross sections obtained by cutting these mirrors at their centers, respectively. FIG. 3 (B) shows a central focal point detection frame (outer frame) 3 a formed at the center of the focusing screen 3 as an enlarged view. [0048] In FIG. 3 (A), the LED-C_ 30 a illuminates the neighborhood of the central focal point detection frame 3 a . Similarly, the LED-L 1 _ 30 b illuminates the neighborhood of the left middle focal point detection frame 3 b , the LED-L 2 _ 30 c illuminates the neighborhood of the left focal point detection frame 3 c , the LED-R 1 _ 30 d illuminates the neighborhood of the right middle focal point detection frame 3 d , the LED-R 2 _ 30 e illuminates the neighborhood of the right focal point detection frame 3 e , the LED-T_ 30 f illuminates the neighborhood of the upper focal point detection frame 3 f , and the LED-B_ 30 g illuminates the neighborhood of the lower focal point detection frame 3 g. [0049] In this case, the illumination lights from the LEDs 30 a to 30 g comprehensively irradiate the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g , respectively, or irradiate the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g to cover all the focal point detection frames, respectively, so as to compensate for the displacement caused by manufacture tolerance. [0050] The illumination lights from the LEDs 30 a to 30 g are reflected by reflecting regions 3 h , 3 i , 3 j , 3 k , 3 l, 3 m, and 3 n arranged at the centers of the focal point detection frames 3 a , 3 b , 3 c , 3 d , 3 e , 3 f , and 3 g , respectively. The reflected lights are observed through the hollow penta mirror 4 , the third reflecting mirror 5 , and the eyepiece lens unit 6 . [0051] Fundamentally, the LED 30 satisfactorily illuminates the small-area reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n formed in the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g . As described above, since the optical path of the illumination light from the LED 30 becomes short, the illumination system (the LED 30 or the like) can be reduced in size. In addition, since the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n are arranged at the centers of the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g , respectively, the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n can be reliably illuminated even though the illumination light from the LED 30 somewhat shifts from the target. For this reason, the illumination light from the LED 30 need not be adjusted. [0052] As is apparent from the enlarged view shown in FIG. 3 (B), the reflecting region 3 h formed at the center of the central focal point detection frame 3 a reflects the illumination light from the LED 30 a for superimpose illumination such that the illumination light is guided to the eyes of a photographer through the hollow penta mirror 4 and the third reflecting mirror 5 . The reflecting region 3 h is constituted by a set of a plurality of microscopic reflecting surfaces 3 h S having the same shapes. The microscopic reflecting surfaces 3 h S are formed at predetermined angles with the surface of the focusing screen 3 . [0053] When one reflecting region is constituted by one surface, the reflecting region must be formed at the predetermined angle as described above. In this case, since a level difference between both ends of the reflecting region is considerably large, the reflective deposition process becomes ununiform to cause uneven brightness. [0054] For this reason, as described in this embodiment, one reflecting region is constituted as a set of microscopic reflecting surfaces having equal reflection angles, so that the influence of the level difference described above is reduced. In this case, tilt angles of the microscopic reflecting surfaces formed at the centers of the focal point detection frames with respect to the focusing screen 3 are optimally set such that a photographer can preferably see lights reflected by the microscopic reflecting surfaces. [0055] The prism edge lines of the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g are formed in almost parallel to the illumination light from the LED 30 so that the reflected light components which are generated by the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g are not directed towards the eyepiece lens unit (eyes of a photographer). In this manner, when object light has low luminance (when an observing environment is dark), all the focal point detection frames do not reflect light to the eyepiece lens unit, and only the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n arranged at the centers of the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g reflect light to the eyepiece lens unit. For this reason, unlike the conventional technique, a photographer does not feel unpleasant in the viewfinder by increasing the number of reflected light components. [0056] Like FIG. 3 (A), FIG. 4 (A) shows a manner of illuminating the focal point detection frames of the focusing screen 3 by the LED 30 for superimpose illumination. FIG. 4 (B) shows the left focal point detection frame 3 c located on the left (because the image is horizontally reversed by the hollow penta mirror 4 ) in view of a photographer who looks into the viewfinder as an enlarged view. The same reference numerals as in FIG. 3 denote the same parts in FIG. 4 . [0057] As is apparent from the enlarged view shown in FIG. 4 (B), the reflecting region 3 j formed at the center of the left focal point detection frame 3 c reflects the illumination light from the LED 30 c for superimpose illumination such that the illumination light is guided to the eyes of a photographer through the hollow penta mirror 4 and the third reflecting mirror 5 . The reflecting region 3 j is constituted by a set of a plurality of microscopic reflecting surfaces having the same shapes like the reflecting region 3 h . The microscopic reflecting surfaces are formed at predetermined angles with the surface of the focusing screen 3 . [0058] However, the reflecting region 3 j of the left focal point detection frame 3 c is different from the reflecting region 3 h of the central focal point detection frame 3 a in that the reflecting region 3 j is inclined at an angle 9 with the longitudinal direction of the left focal point detection frame 3 c . The illumination light from the LED 30 c for superimpose illumination is substantially perpendicular to the longitudinal direction of the microscopic reflecting surfaces. [0059] When the microscopic reflecting surfaces in the reflecting regions of the focal point detection frames which are formed on the left and right of the viewfinder optical axis (central focal point detection frame 3 a ) are to be arranged in horizontal and vertical alignments like the reflecting region 3 h of the central focal point detection frame 3 a , the microscopic reflecting surfaces must be inclined along with the two axes to guide the illumination light from the LED 30 to the eyes of a photographer. When the microscopic reflecting surfaces are inclined along the two axes in this manner, the shapes of the reflecting surfaces in the reflecting region are different from each other, and the reflecting regions changes in size depending on the positions of the focal point detection frames to cause uneven brightness. [0060] In order to this drawback, in this embodiment, the reflecting regions of the focal point detection frames formed on the left and right of the viewfinder optical axis (central focal point detection frame 3 a ) are inclined at an angle θ with the longitudinal direction of the focal point detection frames. In this manner, when the angle of only the one axis is optimally changed, the illumination light from the LED 30 can be correctly guided to the eyes of the photographer, and the reflecting regions of the focal point detection frames can be repressed from varying in size. [0061] FIG. 5 is a viewfinder screen in the camera according to this embodiment. Seven focal point detection frames 3 a , 3 b , 3 c , 3 d , 3 e , 3 f , and 3 g corresponding to focus detection regions of a focal point detection unit 15 are displayed in viewfinder screen. [0062] Since a photographer consequentially see the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g on the focusing screen 3 through the hollow penta mirror 4 and the third reflecting mirror 5 , the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g observed on the viewfinder screen are arranged at positions obtained by horizontally reversing the positions of the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g in FIG. 3 . [0063] The illumination light from the LED 30 for superimpose illumination is projected to the reflecting regions 3 h , 3 i , 3 j , 3 k , 3 l, 3 m, and 3 n in the focal point detection frames such that a flux of light from the LED 30 cover these regions and does not illuminate the reflecting regions of the focal point detection frames arranged around one focal point detection frame. [0064] The prism edge lines of the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g are formed in almost parallel to the optical axis of the illumination light from the LED 30 such that the prisms constituting the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g are repressed from unnecessarily reflecting excessive light of the illumination light from the LED 30 for superimpose illumination. [0065] Since the prisms of the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g partially transmit an object light L, the object light L transmitting through the prisms is observed by a photographer as light which is in a half transmission state and which is darker than the object light L transmitting through the mat sections around the focal point detection frames on the focusing screen 3 . In this manner, the photographer can discriminates the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g from each other in the viewfinder screen. [0066] On the other hand, the surfaces of the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n arranged at the centers of the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g are subjected to a reflective deposition process using a metal such as aluminum or chromium. For this reason, the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n rarely transmit the object light L. Therefore, the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n are recognized as small black dots in the viewfinder screen. [0067] In this manner, when a photographer looks into the viewfinder to observes a normal object image without a superimpose display, the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n are only recognized as black dots as described above. For this reason, unlike a conventional technique, the photographer is not hard to see the object image. [0068] The reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n must be easily recognized by a photographer who looks into the viewfinder when illumination light from the LED 30 is reflected by the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n. When the photographer observes the object image in a normal state, the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n must be arranged not to interrupt the observation. Therefore, the sizes of the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n must satisfy the above conditions. More specifically, the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n preferably have sizes of less than 00.2 mm each. [0069] In FIG. 5 , an in-viewfinder information display section 35 which displays necessary information such as a shutter speed, a aperture value, and display showing that an electric charge of the flashlight-emitting unit has been competed related to photographing is arranged under the viewfinder screen. [0070] FIG. 6 is a view selectively showing only the seven reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n at the centers of the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g. [0071] In the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n, microscopic reflective surfaces each having a size: 40 μm (horizontal)×25 μm (vertical) are arranged in a staggered pattern to enclose circles each having a size of less than φ0.2 mm. In the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n, circular regions 3 o, 3 p, 3 q, 3 r, 3 s, 3 t, and 3 u (indicated by hatched areas in FIG. 6 ) which can be accommodated in the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n, respectively, are subjected to a reflective deposition process using a metal. [0072] When illumination light from the LED 30 is irradiated on the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n, the illumination light is reflected by the circular regions 3 o to 3 u subjected to the reflective deposition process. [0073] In this case, the regions subjected to the reflective deposition process have circular shapes for the following reason. That is, as described in FIG. 4 , in the focal point detection frames located on the left and right of the finder optical axis (central focal point detection frame 3 a ), since the reflecting regions are inclined at the predetermined angle θ with the longitudinal direction of the focal point detection frames, the circular shapes are employed to minimize the variation in reflecting surface shapes of the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n. [0074] Although the circular regions 3 o to 3 u are subjected to the deposition process, the deposition metal wraps around the mask. For this reason, in order to minimize disturbance of the shapes of the deposition regions, the deposition regions preferably have circular shapes. [0075] On the other hand, since the areas of the circular regions 3 o to 3 u are slightly smaller than those of the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n, respectively, the displacements of the deposition regions can be permitted when the deposition process is performed to the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n. [0076] FIG. 7 is a longitudinal cross-sectional enlarged view of the reflecting region 3 h . The reflecting region 3 h is formed as a set of the microscopic reflecting surfaces 3 h S having the same shapes as described above. An inclined surface 3 h R which is inclined with respect to the surface of the focusing screen 3 functions as an actual reflecting surface, and the tilt angle of the inclined surface 3 h R is such an angle that a flux of light emitted from the LED 30 for superimpose illumination is guided to the eyes of a photographer (the eyepiece lens unit 6 in FIG. 1 ). [0077] In this embodiment, the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n are arranged at the centers of the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g , respectively. However, the reflecting regions 3 h to 3 n may be positioned within the focal point detection frames 3 a to 3 g , respectively. Second Embodiment [0078] A viewfinder display apparatus according to the second embodiment of the present invention will be described below. [0079] FIG. 8 (A) shows a manner of actually illuminating the focal point detection frames on the focusing screen 40 with illumination light from an LED 39 for superimpose illumination in the viewfinder display apparatus according to this embodiment. In FIG. 8 (A), a hollow penta mirror 4 and a third reflecting mirror 5 are shown as cross sections obtained by cutting these mirrors at their centers, respectively. FIG. 8 (B) shows a central focal point detection frame 40 a formed at the center of the focusing screen 40 as an enlarged view. [0080] n FIG. 8 (A), the LED-C_ 39 a illuminates the neighborhood of the central focal point detection frame 40 a . Similarly, the LED-L 1 _ 39 b illuminates the neighborhood of the left middle focal point detection frame 40 b , the LED-L 2 _ 39 c illuminates the neighborhood of the left focal point detection frame 40 c , the LED-R 1 _ 39 d illuminates the neighborhood of the right middle focal point detection frame 40 d , the LED-R 2 _ 39 e illuminates the neighborhood of the right focal point detection frame 40 e , the LED-T_ 39 f illuminates the neighborhood of the upper focal point detection frame 40 f , and the LED-B_ 39 g illuminates the neighborhood of the lower focal point detection frame 40 g. [0081] In this case, the illumination lights from the LEDs 39 a to 39 g comprehensively irradiate the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g , respectively, or irradiate the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g to cover all the focal point detection frames, respectively, so as to compensate for the displacement caused by manufacture tolerance. [0082] One of the frame lines of each of the focal point detection frames 40 a , 40 b , 40 c , 40 d , 40 e , 40 f , and 40 g is cut. In the cut regions of the focal point detection frames 40 a , 40 b , 40 c , 40 d , 40 e , 40 f , and 40 g , reflecting regions 40 h , 40 i , 40 j , 40 k , 40 l, 40 m, and 40 n are arranged, respectively. [0083] Illumination lights from the LEDs 39 a to 39 g are reflected by reflecting regions 40 h , 40 i , 40 j , 40 k , 40 l, 40 m, and 40 n, respectively. The reflected lights are observed through the hollow penta mirror 4 , the third reflecting mirror 5 , and an eyepiece lens unit 6 . [0084] The LED 39 satisfactorily illuminates the small-area reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n formed in the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g . As in the first embodiment, since the optical path of the illumination light from the LED 39 becomes short, the illumination system (the LED 39 or the like) can be reduced in size. In addition, since the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n are arranged at the centers of the cut regions of the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g , respectively, the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n can be reliably illuminated even though the illumination light from the LED 39 somewhat shifts from the target. For this reason, the illumination light from the LED 39 need not be adjusted. [0085] As is apparent from the enlarged view shown in FIG. 8 (B), the reflecting region 40 h is formed on the extension line of the cut frame line of the central focal point detection frame 40 a . The reflecting region 40 h reflects the illumination light from the LED 39 a for superimpose illumination to guide the illumination light to the eyes of a photographer (the eyepiece lens unit 6 as shown in FIG. 1 ) through the hollow penta mirror 4 and the third reflecting mirror 5 . [0086] The reflecting region 40 h is constituted by a set of a plurality of microscopic reflecting surfaces 40 h S having the same shapes ( FIG. 9 ). The microscopic reflecting surfaces 40 h S are formed at a predetermined angle with the surface of the focusing screen 40 . [0087] When the reflecting region is constituted wholly by one surface, the reflecting region must be formed at the predetermined angle as described above. In this case, since a level difference between both ends of the reflecting region is considerably large, the reflective deposition process becomes ununiform to cause uneven brightness (will be described later). [0088] For this reason, as described in this embodiment, one reflecting region is constituted as a set of microscopic reflecting surfaces having equal reflection angles, so that the influence of the level difference described above is reduced. In this case, tilt angles of the microscopic reflecting surfaces formed on one sides of the focal point detection frames with respect to the focusing screen 40 are optimally set such that a photographer can preferably see lights reflected by the microscopic reflecting surfaces. [0089] The prism edge lines of the focal point detection frames are formed in almost parallel to the illumination light from the LED 39 so that the reflected light components which are generated by the focal point detection frames are not directed towards the eyepiece lens unit. In this manner, when object light has low luminance (when an observing environment is dark), all the focal point detection frames do not reflect light to the eyepiece lens unit, and only the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n arranged at the centers of the cut regions of the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g reflect light to the eyepiece lens unit. For this reason, unlike the conventional technique, a photographer does not feel unpleasant in the viewfinder by increasing the number of reflected light components. [0090] FIG. 10 is a viewfinder screen in the camera according to this embodiment. Seven focal point detection frames 40 a , 40 b , 40 c , 40 d , 40 e , 40 f , and 40 g corresponding to focus detection regions of a focal point detection unit 15 are displayed in the finder screen. [0091] Since a photographer consequentially see the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g on the focusing screen 40 through the hollow penta mirror 4 and the third reflecting mirror 5 , the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g observed on the viewfinder screen are arranged at positions obtained by horizontally reversing the positions of the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g in FIG. 8 . [0092] The illumination light from the LED 39 for superimpose illumination is projected to the reflecting regions 40 h , 40 i , 40 j , 40 k , 40 l, 40 m, and 40 n in the focal point detection frames to cover these regions such that a flux of light from the LED 39 does not illuminate the reflecting regions of the focal point detection frames arranged around one focal point detection frame. [0093] The prism edge lines of the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g are formed in almost parallel to the optical axis of the illumination light from the LED 39 such that the prisms constituting the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g are repressed from unnecessarily reflecting excessive light of the illumination light from the LED 39 for superimpose illumination to the eyepiece lens unit. [0094] Since the prisms of the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g partially transmit an object light L, the object light L transmitting through the prisms is observed by a photographer as light which is in a half transmission state and which is darker than the object light L transmitting through the mat sections around the focal point detection frames on the focusing screen 40 . In this manner, the photographer can discriminates the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g from each other on the viewfinder screen. [0095] On the other hand, the surfaces of the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n arranged on one sides of the frame edges of the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g are subjected to a reflective deposition process using a metal such as aluminum or chromium. For this reason, the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n rarely transmit the object light L. Therefore, the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n are recognized as small black dots in the viewfinder screen. [0096] In this manner, when a photographer looks into the viewfinder and observers a normal object image without a superimpose display, the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n are only recognized as black dots as described above. For this reason, unlike a conventional technique, the photographer is not hard to see the object image. [0097] The reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n must be easily recognized by a photographer who looks into the viewfinder when illumination light from the LED 39 is reflected by the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n. When the photographer observes the object image in a normal state, the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n must be arranged not to interrupt the observation. Therefore, the sizes of the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n must satisfy the above conditions. More specifically, the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n preferably have sizes of less than 00.2 mm each. More desirably, the sizes are 00.1 mm or more each. [0098] In FIG. 10 , an in-viewfinder information display section 35 which displays necessary information such as a shutter speed, a aperture value, and a display showing that an electric charge of the flashlight-emitting unit has been completed related to photographing is arranged under the viewfinder screen. [0099] In this embodiment, some of the frame lines of the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g are cut, and the reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n are arranged in the cut regions, respectively. The photographer who looks into the viewfinder can observe the focal point detection frames 40 a to 40 g and reflecting regions 40 h to 40 n as one frame. For this reason, the photographer can observe an object image without uncomfortable feeling in normal viewfinder observation. [0100] The present invention is not limited to the above embodiments. In the embodiments, the reflecting regions are directly formed on the focusing screen. However, a reflecting plate having a reflecting surface region is independently arranged near the focusing screen to reflect light from an LED for superimpose to the eyes of a photographer, so that the reflection of the reflecting plate may be used. [0101] According to the present invention, illumination light is reflected by dot-like reflecting regions formed in focusing point detection regions (in regions surrounded by frame line regions) to guide reflected light to the eyes of a photographer, so that visibility in the viewfinder field is improved. [0102] More specifically, when superimpose display of a selected focus detection region is performed, only dot-like reflecting regions are caused to flicker at a high luminescence to make it possible to cause a photographer to recognize a selected focus detection region. When an object image is observed in a normal state without superimpose display, only dot-like reflecting regions are blacked out to make it possible that a photographer is repressed from being hard to see the object image.

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    Publication numberPublication dateAssigneeTitle
    US-6920284-B2July 19, 2005Canon Kabushiki KaishaViewfinder display apparatus

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