The Stiles–Crawford effect is often invoked by vision scientists when predictions of the effects of aberrations and defocus on spatial visual performance are not borne out experimentally. Modeling the Stiles–Crawford effect as an apodization, we investigated the expected influence that it would have on spatial visual performance in the presence of 1-diopter primary spherical aberration at the edge of a 6-mm-diameter centered pupil. The changes in refraction produced by a high Stiles–Crawford effect, according to various criteria, were small at approximately 0.10 diopter. The Stiles–Crawford effect has only a small capability to compensate for defocus and spherical aberration. These results indicate that the Stiles–Crawford effect has little influence on spatial visual performance in the case of centered pupils. We suggest that the faith that has often been placed in the Stiles–Crawford effect to account for discrepancies between experimental results and expected results is not justified, at least for well-centered pupils and Stiles–Crawford effects.
© 1998 Optical Society of America
(110.3000) Imaging systems : Image quality assessment
(110.4100) Imaging systems : Modulation transfer function
(220.1000) Optical design and fabrication : Aberration compensation
(220.1230) Optical design and fabrication : Apodization
David A. Atchison, Anthony Joblin, and George Smith, "Influence of Stiles–Crawford effect apodization on spatial visual performance," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 15, 2545-2551 (1998)