datacolor Spyder LensCal review: DIY autofocus calibration for your camera

The datacolor Spyder LensCal is a calibration tool to help you fine-tune the autofocus accuracy of your cameras and lenses.

datacolor Spyder LensCal
(Image: © Matthew Richards)

Digital Camera World Verdict

The datacolor Spyder LensCal sets out to solve a problem. I hate it when I’ve taken what should have been a great shot, only to discover that the camera has autofocused in the wrong place, and the critical area that I wanted to be sharp looks blurry. If that’s a consistent problem with a specific camera and lens combination, this calibration tool can get things back on track.


  • +

    Simple but effective

  • +

    Good build quality

  • +

    Reasonably priced


  • -

    Debatable advantage for mirrorless

  • -

    Only supported by some cameras

  • -

    Might not be a complete fix

Why you can trust Digital Camera World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out how we test.

I started out in photography back in the days when there was no such thing as autofocus. If I focused a lens at the wrong distance, it was my fault, pure and simple. Nowadays, most of us rely almost exclusively on autofocus. That’s all well and good if an autofocus system is consistently accurate but, sadly, that’s often not the case. For interchangeable lens cameras, you’re relying on the electronics and mechanics of both the camera and any attached lens to play nicely together and work in complete harmony. They might not. 

Autofocus inaccuracy is more of a problem with DSLRs, which have separate autofocus modules and image sensors, in physically different places. That gives more room for error, compared with mirrorless cameras in which autofocus is based on the actual image sensor itself. Even with mirrorless cameras, there can be room for improvement, especially when using DSLR-style lenses via a mount adapter. A bit of fine-tuning or ‘micro-adjustment’ can pay dividends.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Main construction materialPlastic
Attachment¼-inch tripod thread
Levelling aidBubble level
Instructions includedBasic only
Dimensions (folded)217x129x9mm

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Matthew Richards

Matthew Richards is a photographer and journalist who has spent years using and reviewing all manner of photo gear. He is Digital Camera World's principal lens reviewer – and has tested more primes and zooms than most people have had hot dinners! 

His expertise with equipment doesn’t end there, though. He is also an encyclopedia  when it comes to all manner of cameras, camera holsters and bags, flashguns, tripods and heads, printers, papers and inks, and just about anything imaging-related. 

In an earlier life he was a broadcast engineer at the BBC, as well as a former editor of PC Guide.