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08/03/2005 10:05:49 AM · #1
I often wonder how many people rely on the auto focus on their cams and how many don't ?

08/03/2005 10:06:39 AM · #2
AF all the way!
08/03/2005 10:08:29 AM · #3
It depends on the subject. For a landscape I will generally rely on AF though in certain lighting conditions I will switch to MF. For macro/closeup work I start with AF but usually have to switch to MF to get the exact focus point I want with the shallow DOF.
08/03/2005 10:09:30 AM · #4
AF untill the lens starts hunting.
08/03/2005 10:09:34 AM · #5
I probably use AF maybe 90% of the time and MF only occasionally.

Why use MF if one can focus on the right object more quickly with AF?

So I only use MF if my AF is struggling - for example, trying to focus on a cheetah lying in tall grass, the grass moving in the wind.

I do use the focus lock a LOT though - focus on the object and then recompose before taking the shot.

Why do you ask Peecee?
08/03/2005 10:10:23 AM · #6
I've heard a few people say "the human eye can focus much better than any machine invented by man". That is so funny.

I always use AF unless I'm shotting close to 1:1 macro or 2:1 with a reversed lens. My 20D can focus on a white wall in total darkness if I have the ST-E2 on top or my 550EX. Use the tehchnology.


08/03/2005 10:11:54 AM · #7
i used to only use AF but i find myself using MF alot more. it now is almost always on MF espically in low light or macro as my camera says its focused on my subject but is still very blurry. I just have to remember to put my reading glasses on to make sure its really in focus tho :o)
08/03/2005 10:12:51 AM · #8
MF people are retarded. ;-)
08/03/2005 10:12:58 AM · #9
Originally posted by BlackDot:

AF untill the lens starts hunting.

For the record, the lens doesn't do the hunting, the camera does.
08/03/2005 10:14:46 AM · #10

baaaaahahahahhahahahah

Originally posted by terje:

MF people are retarded. ;-)

08/03/2005 10:18:09 AM · #11
Definitely AF, especially with a moving subject. I pretty much only use MF to "lock in" focus when shooting repeatedly at a stationary object from a tripod or when doing extreme macro stuff.

I also use MF when I have no choice, such as when using a 1.4x converter on my 100-400. I really miss AF when I use this combo.
08/03/2005 10:21:03 AM · #12
Originally posted by Kavey:

I probably use AF maybe 90% of the time and MF only occasionally.

Why use MF if one can focus on the right object more quickly with AF?

So I only use MF if my AF is struggling - for example, trying to focus on a cheetah lying in tall grass, the grass moving in the wind.

I do use the focus lock a LOT though - focus on the object and then recompose before taking the shot.

Why do you ask Peecee?

Just been bugging me of late,I've had one or two questionable results using AF, Years ago I was "s**t hot" with the old split screen slr focus and very rarely got a bad focus, maybe I need to do a few tests to check I am still seeing the image correctly to start with.
I have heard that my 28-105 is a little soft on occasions, maybe that is what I am seeing.
08/03/2005 10:33:19 AM · #13
I truly wish there were bigger viewers for manual focusing. In low-light conditions the AF just doesn't always cut it. Also, certain filters tend to throw AF off.

Question, is there a way to use a 580EX Flash to focus but not have it "emit" a flash?
08/03/2005 10:36:18 AM · #14
Originally posted by theSaj:

I truly wish there were bigger viewers for manual focusing. In low-light conditions the AF just doesn't always cut it. Also, certain filters tend to throw AF off.

Question, is there a way to use a 580EX Flash to focus but not have it "emit" a flash?


Yes - there is a custom function on the 20D that says whether the flash fires or not. Set it to does not fire, then it bursts for the AF help, but doesn't fire when taking the shot.

Use AF all the time, unless, like others have said, the camera is have trouble locking onto the right object.
08/03/2005 11:22:26 AM · #15
In normal shooting I do use AF predominantly. I do, however, use MF in the following situations, and these pop up quite regularly:
- Macro shooting
- Close-in portraits of a stationary person with a fast lens (1)
- Hyperfocal focusing for landscape
- Astrophotography (different strategy from landscape!)
- Zone focusing for action (e.g. focus on 2nd base and wait for the play)
- When the lens is MF-only, LOL!

(1) Often I get better results in these situations by setting focus approximately, and rocking back and forth to change the focus plane. The subject is often off-center as well, and it takes way too much time to set an off-center focus point, compared to using the focus & rock technique, which gives much more flexibility. For example, I can quickly reorient the camera, change the composition or view point, or shoot a burst with "bracketed focus" very easily with this technique. Try that with AF.
The downfall of MF with a 10D (or really any 1.6-crop cam) is that the viewfinder and screen type is not set up for MF, so it's more of a struggle than it is with a full-frame cam. I don't like split-image focusing, but instead prefer a simple "ground glass" type screen surface. With practice, you can see exactly where the focus plane lies; the trick is to concentrate on the entire image in the viewfinder, rather than centering on the point you want in focus. This helps with composition as well, less tendency to cut things off, LOL.
I'd enjoy hearing MF techniques from others; IMO MF has more areas of application than we commonly realize, and we rely too much on AF performance.

08/03/2005 11:37:44 AM · #16
I used to use AF almost exclusively, but I have found myself lately using MF 50% of the time.

Whenever I am dealing with a stationary object, I use manual focus. I find that the photo is consistently sharper when I select the point of primary focus.

For some sports photography, especially swimming, I like manual focus because the continuous fire is much faster. Also, you don't have misfocusing issues due to waves and ropes.

Similarily, I am now trying to use primes whenever possible too.
08/03/2005 12:01:31 PM · #17
My MF technique may not be that great - but I tend to slide back and forth in and out of focus several times until I get a feel for where the focus is 'just right' - it's hard to tell by just looking through the small viewfinder, so sometimes I have to go by this method (depending on the subject) :\

Any other ideas?
08/03/2005 12:39:44 PM · #18
Where I find AF breaks:

Narrow depth of field shots

Close, small subject against a distant background

Multiple elements in a scene at different ranges, not all of which are part of the subject (can switch to single-point AF to get around a lot of this)

Macro

Fast moving, distant subject

Low light

In a lot of these situations I'll give the AF one or two shots to get close, click it off, and then focus by hand. If I'm doing a lot of rapid shooting and using a lens with manual override (you can still use the manual focus ring with AF on), sometimes I'll use that, but I often turn it off completely to keep the AI from disagreeing with me if I move or have to recompose.
08/03/2005 12:55:07 PM · #19
Lately I have been using MF when I see something fleeting, I yank the camera out, snap on the power, and blaze away. On review I find that the canera was set to MF and the lens was focusing at six inches. When you shoot MF make sure you switch back to AF before you put it away.
08/03/2005 01:14:58 PM · #20
I shoot MF maybe 75% of the time. It's one of the main reasons I switched to dSLR. I'll use AF on moving objects and for walkaround shooting, but on the tripod it's ALWAYS set to MF. And I use the tripod most of the time...

Robt.
08/03/2005 01:22:33 PM · #21
AF or bust. I used and prefered MF for a long time until the focus in my eyes got soft.
08/03/2005 01:26:29 PM · #22
I'm a MF guy.. probably 80 - 90% of the time I'm using MF. Why? I just like it more. I'm usually just as fast, or faster, than AF, and learned SLRs on a purely manual Pentax SuperProgram film body, so I have years of experience. I prefer the control that MF gives me.

Having said that, AF has its uses too, and I'm not afraid to use it when I need to.

One last thing.. there's absolutely no need for taunting and name-calling, even in jest.. towards people that use one method or another. It's purely personal choice, and both methods have pros and cons.
08/03/2005 01:26:38 PM · #23
Unless you have a microprism/split image focusing screen on your camera, MF is hit and miss at best in most situations. AF can focus more reliably than any human eye on today's Cameras.
08/03/2005 01:28:59 PM · #24
Originally posted by Artyste:

I'm usually just as fast, or faster, than AF


Are you for real?
08/03/2005 01:30:56 PM · #25
Originally posted by terje:

Originally posted by Artyste:

I'm usually just as fast, or faster, than AF


Are you for real?


He's just a pigment of your imagination. (typo intended) =)
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