bo·​keh | \ ˈbō-kā How to pronounce bokeh (audio) , -kə \

Definition of bokeh

: the blurred quality or effect seen in the out-of-focus portion of a photograph taken with a narrow depth of field Good bokeh is smooth and pleasing, whereas bad bokeh produces a jagged and discordant effect. … The quality of bokeh is largely dependent on the construction of the lens. For this reason, lenses that provide high-quality bokeh are prized.— Harold Davis

Examples of bokeh in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The Snapdragon 855 first introduced bokeh to video captured with the smartphone camera. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Qualcomm's Snapdragon 865: Four of its best new features," 5 Dec. 2019 Better portrait mode A few years ago, phone makers like Apple, Samsung and Huawei introduced cameras that produced portrait mode, also known as the bokeh effect, which sharpened a subject in the foreground and blurred the background. Brian X. Chen, New York Times, "The Reason Your Photos Are About to Get a Lot Better," 15 Oct. 2019 Altogether, the sensors create an improved portrait mode with advanced bokeh and depth control. Courtney Linder, Popular Mechanics, "Should You Upgrade to the iPhone 11 Pro?," 10 Sep. 2019 That means your bokeh shots have realistic blur without the usual computational issues. Michael Simon, PCWorld, "Nokia 9 PureView hands-on: All of the cameras and none of the gimmicks," 24 Feb. 2019 Speaking of the camera, iOS 12.1 will allow iPhone XS/XR owners to adjust the depth of field / bokeh in the live preview of a portrait shot — not just after taking it. Chris Welch, The Verge, "iOS 12.1 coming October 30th with group FaceTime, dual-SIM support, and ‘beautygate’ fix," 29 Oct. 2018 The slide-up area houses a 24MP front camera plus a second 2MP sensor to capture depth information for things like bokeh effects. Ron Amadeo, Ars Technica, "Xiaomi’s Mi Mix 3 is an all-screen magnetic slider phone with 10GB of RAM," 25 Oct. 2018 This approach also enables new features like Smart HDR, artificial bokeh, and an improved Portrait Lighting feature. Samuel Axon, Ars Technica, "iPhone XS and XS Max review: Big screens, big performance, big lenses, big prices," 1 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bokeh.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of bokeh

1997, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for bokeh

borrowed from Japanese boke "blur, haziness"

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The first known use of bokeh was in 1997

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Cite this Entry

“Bokeh.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Jul. 2020.

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