TPF Noob!
Jun 13, 2010
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Can others edit my Photos
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Fun with wonderful cookie letters! :)


I don't have a diopter. (That I know of.)

You should have it adjusts focus on the veiwfinder to your eye, its a small wheel by the veiwfinder

*EDIT* I did some research and was wrong on some points. Fixed now. *END EDIT*

The wheel is the diopter adjustment wheel and allows you to adjust the viewfinder's window so you can see it clearly with glasses. Turn the wheel, you'll see

Gary thinks yours might be out of adjustment and be causing you to miss your focus. I think it's more likely that you are manually focusing on a camera designed to be auto focused. The Rebel XS, just like my Rebel 300D does not have a focus screen designed for manual focus.

Older film SLRs had what's known as a "split focus screen" that made manual focusing easy. It split the image in two to four sections (depending on the camera). When the image was in focus, the different sections would line up. When out of focus, even slightly, they would not line up, making it very easy to focus manually.

Our cameras have a focus screen that's not split. No matter how unfocused we are our image is one solid image in the viewfinder. So we have only the sharpness of the image to tell us we're in focus. Unfortunately, we're looking at something the size of a postage stamp, maybe even smaller, so it's incredibly difficult to get the focus spot on. That's why I use auto focus for almost all of my shots. I only use manual focus when the lighting causes auto focus to just hunt back and forth.

You can get replacement focus screens for your camera so you can get the split focus screen advantage, but it involves taking some of your camera apart. I don't know if a camera store could be paid to do it for you. It would most likely void your warranty, if you have one.

Sorry for the book,
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