User Tag List

Thanks useful information Thanks useful information:  10
Results 1 to 14 of 14

Thread: Newbie AF Question

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    29 Jan 2016
    Location
    Kempsey
    Posts
    371
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Newbie AF Question

    Still learning about my D7200.
    What does it mean when the focus point in the viewfinder goes red when trying to focus? I have read the manual and I can't find what it means. Maybe I have missed it.
    Thankyou

  2. #2
    Ausphotography Regular J.davis's Avatar
    Join Date
    17 Dec 2008
    Location
    Willowbank
    Posts
    1,152
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Red is the active focus point.
    Regards
    John
    Nikon D750, Sigma 105mm OS Macro, Tokina 16-28 F2.8, Sigma 24-105 Art, Sigma 150-600C,
    Benro Tripod and Monopod with Arca plates

  3. #3
    Member
    Threadstarter

    Join Date
    29 Jan 2016
    Location
    Kempsey
    Posts
    371
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Awesome, thankyou for the reply John. So when I focus sometimes and it doesn't go red, there is no active focus point?

  4. #4
    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
    Join Date
    04 Jun 2006
    Location
    the worst house, in the best street
    Posts
    8,185
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    A bit of clarification here.

    The focus point itself doesn't go red.

    The red focus point is red only because the entire vf grid system turns red.
    This means metering is now on.
    Notice how the entire vf grid lines(if you have grid lines active) will turn red. Some folks don't use grid lines, and I highly recommend that they do or should do so)

    The active status of a focus point is dependent on many camera settings.

    That is: you may use AF-C mode and whilst you continuously press the shutter release(or the rear focus button) .. the focus point may turn red for only a brief moment, but in AF-C mode with the camera focusing doesn't show you that the focus point is still red .. even tho the focus point is still active.

    So the focus point is still active, but NOT red.

    So if you don't have grid lines activated in the camera, and all you see is the focus point, then it 'appears' that the focus point is turning red.
    If you have grid lines active then you'll notice how the entire series of black lines in the vf (ie. grid and focus point) will turn red together.
    This simply means that the camera metering system is now active.

    to prove how misleading this idea that the focus point is active when it goes red try this.
    Set the camera to manual focus and half press the shutter. The focus point will still turn red briefly. So how can the focus point 'be active' if you've set the camera to manual focus mode .. which disables AF!!

    For further clarification of what this all means: if you use spot metering, the actual spot meter is also the focus point. So the focus point has a dual purpose. Not all camera brands use this system(where the spot meter is a user setting) Some brands on some models have a permanently fixed spot point and always set it to the centre area.
    So what the momentary red indicator on the focus point actual shows you is that the spot meter is now active.

    Quote Originally Posted by R1Joel View Post
    .... So when I focus sometimes and it doesn't go red, there is no active focus point?
    I can't see how you can do this. That is AF and not see a brief red moment in the vf.
    Every time you try to AF, you activate/reactivate the camera's meter. And remember that the red highlight is only momentary, and is only an indicator that the metering has been set(or reset).

    I don't have access to a camera with an AF-A mode, so can't give you any advice on how this mode works.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Update: I just checked out of curiosity.

    You can set the AF point illumination to ON/OFF/Auto modes.

    I noted that on the D7200 you have a few options for manual focus mode too.(on my cameras I don't have that option)

    So in the above quote where you said that " .... and it doesn't go red, there is no active focus point?"

    I suspect that CSM (spanner in the menu list) item a5 the camera is set to Auto for focus point illumination.

    What this does: if you're in a dark environment then it's harder to see the black(or dark) focus point against a dark background. But if you then point to a brighter scene, the black focus square against a brighter background is easily distinguishable .. hence no need for it to light up red. The red LED I guess uses battery power and this is a way to conserve battery power.

    If you set the CSM menu a5 to OFF or ON, then it does literally that .. and doesn't confuse you in any way.

    But just to note that the red indicator still doesn't verify which focus point is active(or not).
    It's merely a visual aide for when the conditions require it ... so that you can easily see the focus square.

    ps. it's good to see that Nikon give you all those options to tweak to your liking.
    I didn't even know that you could separate the focus square illumination from the rest of the grid until this thread.
    But I like information, and the more the merrier. So I leave it to ON.
    The only user setting I'd like to see available as well would be a time out option to set how long it stays red for. Sometimes having it on longer can help in some conditions.
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
    {Sigma}; ->10-20/4-5.6 : 50/1.4 : 12-24/4.5-5.6II : 150-600mm|S
    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC


  5. #5
    Member
    Threadstarter

    Join Date
    29 Jan 2016
    Location
    Kempsey
    Posts
    371
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Arthur, thankyou very much for taking the time to answer so thoroughly. I fully understand now what it means. I can begin to take photos even though they are red. At first I thought that it meant that it couldn't focus (don't laugh). .

    Thankyou again.

  6. #6
    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
    Join Date
    04 Jun 2006
    Location
    the worst house, in the best street
    Posts
    8,185
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by R1Joel View Post
    .... At first I thought that it meant that it couldn't focus (don't laugh). .

    Thankyou again.
    never laugh at what people are trying to learn about.

    Laugh at the idiot that should know, after nearly 10 years of messing with Nikon camera menus .. and doesn't know!

    Seriously didn't know that AF highlighting can be separated from the rest of the vf highlighting .. nor the Auto setting mode.
    I suppose it's one of those settings I've never needed as I just preferred it to be on(as it is).

    So it seems that you haven't messed with CSM a5 .. the AF point highlighting options then? .. and if not, is it on Auto, as I assum it may be.
    I'm just trying to figure out what the default setting is.

    ps. the setting that helps with focus confirmation is a beep tone. Unless you have a desperate reason not to use it, I think it's better to have it on.
    So that when the camera does get focus, a quiet beep lets you know.
    I think it only works in AF-S(single shot AF mode) and doesn't beep in AF-C(continuous) mode.

  7. #7
    Ausphotography Regular J.davis's Avatar
    Join Date
    17 Dec 2008
    Location
    Willowbank
    Posts
    1,152
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Good to see you are perfect AK, and I don't think calling people 'idiots' does their self esteem much good.

    "Laugh at the idiot that should know, after nearly 10 years of messing with Nikon camera menus .. and doesn't know! "

  8. #8
    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
    Join Date
    04 Jun 2006
    Location
    the worst house, in the best street
    Posts
    8,185
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Just in case you missed it John .. the idiot with 10 years of messing about with Nikon cameras that I refer too is of course myself!

  9. #9
    Member
    Threadstarter

    Join Date
    29 Jan 2016
    Location
    Kempsey
    Posts
    371
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    never laugh at what people are trying to learn about.

    Laugh at the idiot that should know, after nearly 10 years of messing with Nikon camera menus .. and doesn't know!

    Seriously didn't know that AF highlighting can be separated from the rest of the vf highlighting .. nor the Auto setting mode.
    I suppose it's one of those settings I've never needed as I just preferred it to be on(as it is).

    So it seems that you haven't messed with CSM a5 .. the AF point highlighting options then? .. and if not, is it on Auto, as I assum it may be.
    I'm just trying to figure out what the default setting is.

    ps. the setting that helps with focus confirmation is a beep tone. Unless you have a desperate reason not to use it, I think it's better to have it on.
    So that when the camera does get focus, a quiet beep lets you know.
    I think it only works in AF-S(single shot AF mode) and doesn't beep in AF-C(continuous) mode.
    Yep it's on auto by default. I worked out how to put the beep on last night. Definitely a big help. Now I know about the AF system I should be ready to go more confidently now.

  10. #10
    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
    Join Date
    04 Jun 2006
    Location
    the worst house, in the best street
    Posts
    8,185
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Yeah .. it's strange.
    In the manual(I have the PDF version) .. just about for every other menu item where it lists the available options, it has a small note for the default option(can be important to know).
    But for some reason for this menu item it doesn't have the small default option notation!

    Just so you know why this can be important: Lets say after a long time of using the camera in a certain way, you have it set up to your liking. Sometimes cameras fail, and to get it going may only require something as simple as a 'two green button reset' .. basically a reset of the camera. You can also do this via a menu options too.
    This restores all available options to default, so knowing those defaults can help to set the camera up again.

    ps. one last tip.
    Do a search for 'back button focusing' or AF-On focusing.
    For both better control and better understanding of focusing, this back button focusing is a handy feature to come to terms with. It's not for everyone, but many folks that do switch to using it swear by it's usefulness.

  11. #11
    Ausphotography Regular J.davis's Avatar
    Join Date
    17 Dec 2008
    Location
    Willowbank
    Posts
    1,152
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I read different to you AK, thought it was me. I'm not in a good space at the moment.Sorry.

  12. #12
    Member
    Threadstarter

    Join Date
    29 Jan 2016
    Location
    Kempsey
    Posts
    371
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    Yeah .. it's strange.
    In the manual(I have the PDF version) .. just about for every other menu item where it lists the available options, it has a small note for the default option(can be important to know).
    But for some reason for this menu item it doesn't have the small default option notation!

    Just so you know why this can be important: Lets say after a long time of using the camera in a certain way, you have it set up to your liking. Sometimes cameras fail, and to get it going may only require something as simple as a 'two green button reset' .. basically a reset of the camera. You can also do this via a menu options too.
    This restores all available options to default, so knowing those defaults can help to set the camera up again.

    ps. one last tip.
    Do a search for 'back button focusing' or AF-On focusing.
    For both better control and better understanding of focusing, this back button focusing is a handy feature to come to terms with. It's not for everyone, but many folks that do switch to using it swear by it's usefulness.
    Thanks for the tips Arthur. I have seen a video of someone online who was recommending using back button focus. I will read more into it.

  13. #13
    Ausphotography Regular J.davis's Avatar
    Join Date
    17 Dec 2008
    Location
    Willowbank
    Posts
    1,152
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    This bloke converted me to BBF on Nikon.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzqQskGoURE

  14. #14
    Member
    Join Date
    03 Dec 2013
    Location
    Leopold
    Posts
    1,011
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by J.davis View Post
    This bloke converted me to BBF on Nikon.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzqQskGoURE
    Thank you for this link.
    Main Body D800E plus a bunch of other Nikon stuff
    "The eye sees what it wants to see and the camera sees the rest" Nick

    sapiens populus eo per camelus


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •