Focus points?

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by TiaS, Feb 22, 2010.

  1. TiaS

    TiaS TPF Noob!

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    I use a Canon Rebel XS. I use autofocus setting on the lens most of the time. I find that I get best results with manually choosing my focus points from the camera. This particular camera has 7 focus points and so I choose the one best suited for my shot. I find that using the autofocus on the camera too does not consisently give me the results I want (e.g. choosing wrong subject to focus on). I find it a nuisance to have to re-adjust my focus point for every shot. I take a photo and than want to focus on something that is in a different spot in the frame and have to change my focus point.

    Is there a way that I can choose all focus points (without using the A-dep mode which usually uses most but is an automatic setting in the creative mode)?

    I hope my question makes sense...
     
  2. gsgary

    gsgary Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    If the subject is not moving just use focus recompose, i use only the center focus point, so half press shutter to focus on what you want keeping the shutter half pressed recompose the shot
     
  3. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I do the center and recompose as well.

    I only have the center turned on, I point it at what I want to be in focus (subject, eyes, tree,...) and then half push the shutter. I then recompose my shot and press the shutter the rest of the way.

    When I did the the AF points, I would compose the shot and keep half pushing the shutter until got a red point near the area I want to shoot at, then press all the way down.
     
  4. stormbind

    stormbind TPF Noob!

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    +1 to focus at center and then recompose.
     
  5. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I tend to shoot moving subjects so my AF mode is mostly in AI Servo for constant AF when the AF mode is enabled. Using that and the middle point I can track moving subjects and expect the camera to keep up (mostly) with the motions.

    However like this I can't then go and use focus and recompose methods as the AF would start to lock onto whatever the middle point is aimed at if I move it away from the main subject. So what I do us use back button auto focus (I only have a 400D so the model below your camera body so its a feature you have access too). For this it moves the AF activation from a half depression of the shutter button and onto a button on the back of the camera body. On the higher end camera bodies there is a dedicated AF button for this - on the lower rebel series cameras it replaces the little * symbol button.

    Now I can use this button to activate the AF - track a moving subject and if it holds still and I want to recompose I just release that button and recompose - my finger on the shutter won't affect the focus position at all so it should be in focus - this I find faster and more accurate than trying to fiddle around finding the AF on/off button on the lens.

    It should also note that focus and recompose often carries the risk that in recomposing the shot you will move the plane of focus and thus the original subject might not be in focus in the shot - to counter this you can use manual focus to readjust the main focus if you have a lens with USM focusing (Since you have all the time manual focus controls) - this feature works fantasticly well with the backbutton AF above when shooting through wires;reeds;longgrass etc... when AF might be erroring an thus manual is needed in the heat of the moment.
     
  6. gsgary

    gsgary Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    When im shooting moving object i don't just use the center focus point, it all depends what i want the shot to look like
     
  7. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    True but you have once of those fancy DSLRs with many cross point (and other things I'm sure) af points - in the rebel series camera bodies only the middle point is the cross type - the rest of the outer points are somewhat less responcive.

    So I do tend to stick to the middle for relianace - though you are right the outer points are good for keeping creative options open.
     
  8. ArtphotoasiA

    ArtphotoasiA No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Same here!!

    canon 450D 7 points I use the one in the center then i recompose
     
  9. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    That should be the default setting.

    On my Canon cameras, I can scroll through the focus points or choose the 'all of them' option. The problem with that, as you've seen, is that the camera might focus on something you don't want it to. And you can't just use all the points because different points may be on things that are different distances away and the lens can only be focused at one distance at a time.

    I also use the focus & recompose technique. Also, I have set my camera so that AF is not activated by the shutter release button, but by the * button on the back. That way, I can use my thumb to focus, then release it and recompose. That way, I can push or hold down the shutter release button without worrying that the focus will change.
     
  10. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    This works great for your standard lens shooting a wide crowd at wide angles, but it becomes almost impossible for certain shots. Without knowing details of the subject it may not be an option. Just try this on a 1:1 macro shot, or when using an 85mm f/1.2.

    At best the option would be to focus at nearest focal point then recompose.
     

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