Nikon entry-level cameras and focus priority

All CZK Nikon can use focus mode 'AF-C' or 'C' (Auto Focus Continuous) - 'Continuous Tracking Auto Focus'. When the shutter button is pressed halfway, the camera continuously monitors the focus. This principle is very simple: you hold down the focus button and the camera constantly monitors the focus.

This selects the focus mode on many Nikon amateur cameras

This selects the focus mode on many Nikon amateur cameras

Each focus mode (AF-A, AF-C, AF-S, AF-F) have their own priority by default. The priority indicates that the most important thing for the photographer is the instantaneous reaction of the camera to the full press of the shutter button, or precise focusing. Not all cameras have a menu where you can set priority.

By default, almost all Nikon cameras in 'AF-C' focus mode use Shutter priority. In this mode, the camera should instantly respond to the shutter button regardless of focusing accuracy.

But among the entry-level budget cameras, there are cameras that are in AF-C behave “disobediently” and will not release the shutter at any convenient time for the photographer. Such cameras even in the AF-C use “focus priority”.

The exact list of such cameras:

Nikon D40, D40x, D50, D60, D3000, D3100, D3200, D3300, D3400, D3500, D5000

For example, in the instructions to Nikon D3100 indicated:

AF-C   - Continuous tracking AF: For shooting moving subjects. When the shutter-release button is pressed halfway, the camera focuses continuously. The shutter is released only if the camera can focus.

In the mode AF-C, or when in AF-A Continuous AF tracking selected camera gives autofocus higher priority (has a wider focus range) than in AF-S mode, and the shutter can fire before the focus indicator appears.

The instructions are a little incomprehensible. In fact, it turns out that there is a certain “foolproof“, Which is designed to always get sharp shots (in this case, sharp shots = shots with the correct focus). The disadvantage of this limitation is that in real life the camera has already focused but is “not sure about it yet,” and the shutter button is locked. The photographer presses the shutter button and the shutter does not respond. It's almost always better to shoot something, even with a slight focus error, than not to shoot at all.

From my practice, I have long distinguished for myself that the lack of an immediate command to release the shutter with the button fully pressed in AF-S / AF-C mode is the main disadvantage of amateur Nikon cameras. At one time, I suffered for a long time with this restriction in the chamber Nikon D40. And it’s very good that in entry-level cameras, such as Nikon D5100, D5200, D5300, D5500 took this flaw into account.

It’s very easy to get around this limitation... To do this, simply switch the lens to manual focus mode 'M'. Always uses shutter priority in manual focus mode. Also, the limitation can be circumvented using lenses with focus modes M / A or A / M. In these modes, the shutter release is triggered when you start to rotate the focus ring manually to adjust focus.

Earlier in this article, a different method was specified, but it turned out to be inoperative :(.

And a little addition. The following cameras in their menu do not have focus priority settings, but in AF-C mode they always work in shutter priority priority mode, and in AF-S mode in focus priority mode:

Nikon D1, D1h, D1x, D70, D70s, D80, D90, D100

The rest of the Nikon cameras allow you to choose the type of priority for focusing in your menu. This is done in the menu (as shown in the figure below).

Setting Focus Priorities

Setting Focus Priorities

For more details on focusing modes on Nikon cameras, see 'Focus setting'.

Comments here on the site do not require any registration. In the comments, you can ask a question on the topic, or leave your feedback, or describe your experience. For the selection of photographic equipment, I recommend E-Catalog. Many little things for the photo can be found on AliExpress.

The material was prepared by Arkady Shapoval. My Youtube channeland Radozhiva's group on Facebook и VK.

Add a comment:

 

 

Comments: 59, on the topic: Nikon entry-level cameras and focus priority

  • Dmitry K

    and focus traps with non-chip glass are not in the younger (((

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Not a single Nikon camera has it

      • Gene jb

        Well, here's another plus of Kenon. and I once wanted to start with d80, but I started with 400d, and after a bunch of different hand-held glasses, I do not regret it.

        • Arkady Shapoval

          Does kenon have a trap with manual optics?

          • Gene jb

            there is. EMF

            • Michael

              EMF This is the chip. Canon does not have traps with manual lenses.

              • Michael

                ... with Pentax you can see beguiled

          • Alexey

            In the native firmware on the kenons, there really are no focus traps. But! There is a wonderful add-on "magic lantern" (ML), so it allows you to use a focus trap with chip lenses on kenons, besides the focus trap, it also has a lot of useful buns! _)))

        • Miroslav

          On the plus side, Kenon is ahead of the rest, and by the end the picture (under the same shooting conditions With Nikon) is complete nonsense. Sharpness is worse, color reproduction is full G., green (sometimes blue).

          • BB

            Um, I'm a Nikonist, but I don't agree with you. Color rendition is adjusted, as you know, but with sharpness, for example, 40d and 60d have no problems. Ergonomics is a matter of habit. This is me about DSLRs, of course, among other things, I also have no special complaints about Canon compacts, even the SX130 is now available - an excellent device for its tasks.
            If everything was so bad at Canon, who would use it?

            • Miroslav

              Sorry, I did not write that with the same camera settings. Optics at Kenon are inherently soft, which means less harsh. At Kenon, not everything is bad. But I don’t like the Kenon end result (without Photoshop).

              • BB

                And to me Nikonovsky’s result without processing is also not very))
                In the shadows, the D5100 is specifically synit. If the BB is shifted to yellow, then when leaving the shadow the BB leaves for yellowness.
                The same 40d / 60d by default really add a yellow-green tint. But with sharpness, everything is fine, of course, with an eye on optics.

              • hedgehog

                not soft optics but the presence of a Filter in front of the matrix. Remove the filter on the same glass, the sharpness will be ringing, only who needs it? Looking for pimples and facial hair or looking for mandavok among the web of a beard? The boot has real, natural sharpness, and there has never been a problem with the lack of it. Only in photo laboratories excessive Nikon's sharpness comes out with grain and black dots at the edges, verified. The darkroom is not amateurish, professional level. after all the settings, the result is terrifying.

              • Alexey

                Kenon optics are neither soft nor hard. it’s just that Kenon has a lot of budget lenses of a very old design with a low resolution.
                use Tokinu or Sigma Art (for example) or Kenon lenses from the latest developments and you will have a “ringing” picture
                IMHO, the canon is unsuccessful: cheap televisions 70-300, all 50mm, TBU.
                super successful: 16-35 / 4, 24-70 / 2.8 Mk2, 85 1.8, 100/2, 135/2
                etc.

            • Miroslav

              I'm fine on D300, I especially like the picture on Apple. The grass is like in life, human skin (I specially brought my hand to the monitor for comparison - one to one). Like Nikon's motto - as I see, I shoot.

    • Oleg

      But even on D3100 with chip-based ones it works “with a bang”

      • Arkady Shapoval

        With chipped almost all cameras work well.

    • Alexey

      Many cameras no longer have a trap, but rather a new policy issue.

  • Anatoly

    And who can explain why the shutter speed slower than 1/60 is not set in LiveView mode?
    Is this because LV is for video?

    • Arkady Shapoval

      For photography, exposure in the live-view can be any, 1/60 is most likely associated with the video mode.

      • Anatoly

        However, in M ​​mode in Live View, the shutter speed is not physically set to be slower than 1/60.
        (Not set - if in M.
        In the other modes (PAS), all the rules - any are put there)

        • BB

          Maybe something with the settings conjured? What kind of apparatus?

          Everything is installed on Nikons D5100 and D7100. Actually, that's why it is a manual mode ...

          If you switch LV to video mode on the D7100, then yes, it won't. But this is also logical - the shutter speed should be no longer than the duration of one frame - 1/25, 1/30, 1/50 or 1/60 - according to the selected frame rate.

          • anonym

            What nonsense on the D7100 !! Put any excerpt !!!!

            • anonym

              Sorry gentlemen !!! I didn’t get it, (the message above) you can shorter shutter speed any, and longer than (frames / sec) pepper is not clear !!!

              • Anatoly

                ABOUT !!
                That is, is it really not set?
                So I talked about this.

              • Gene jb

                moreover, with magic lantern you can put on video at least 10 seconds with fps override

            • BB

              Otozh, do not get excited without seeing the root))

          • Gene jb

            I don’t know, you can set any shutter speed to 60d. even in the video.

            • BB

              Try to set the shutter speed, for example 1/10, at a frequency of 30 frames per second.
              What will happen?

              Really interesting. Stroboscope? Or will the device set the maximum possible speed of 1/30?

          • Anatoly

            Nikon D7100
            In M mode, when LiveView is on - no matter how you twist - it is not set longer than 1/60 (in other modes - PAS - really any is set)

          • Anatoly

            Thank you very much - figured it out.
            Indeed, the video mode was turned on (I usually don't use LV - that's why I don't even know when I turned it on at all - and whether I turned it on at all)

            Thank you.
            Everything is fine now.

    • irbis

      Bullshit, I put on Nikon 3200 any shutter speed, from 1/4000 to the bolt

  • Oleg

    And a little addition. The following cameras in their menu do not have focus priority settings, but in AF-C mode they always work in shutter priority priority mode, and in AF-S mode in focus priority mode:

    Nikon D1, D1h, D1x, D70, D70s, D80, D90, D100

    D300 - forgot to mention?

    • Arkady Shapoval

      I didn’t forget, nikon d300, unlike the specified cameras, in the menu has the ability to set the priority type. For such cameras, it is said further in the text.

  • anonym

    I understand correctly that prof. camera can take a picture before the lens focuses, but not on an entry-level camera?

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Yes, but on an entry-level camera this can be achieved.

      • anonym

        Well, with manual mode, everything is clear, but with 'AF-ON' I can’t do anything. The shutter only works if the subject is in focus. The focus trap should work this way, and AF-C mode has no effect. D3100

        • Arkady Shapoval

          Interesting and strange. But with af-on and af-s, there shouldn't be a trap.

          • deom

            Checked again. With different focus modes, with different AF area modes. Snapshot after pressing the shutter button only after focusing with the AF-L button or in MF mode. Can someone else check?

            • Serge

              Checked. Focus priority C does not work AF-ON with AF-C only after focusing. D-3100. Also in all focus modes, only after focusing

  • Serge

    wrong .. shutter priority does not work ..., but focus priority always works)))

  • Madame Broshkina

    It is strange that you say that the younger Nikons do not have the priority of descent. I’ve just started working on the AF-ON button (assigned it to the AF-L | AE-L button), so if you focus on this button, the shutter always works, without any focus. I thought this was a flaw, but it turns out that it should be on decent cameras. (I only have Nikon D3200). But with normal focusing by half-pressing, the shutter works only with focus.

    • irbis

      I completely agree, I also have 3200, everything works.

  • anonym

    "Madame Broshkina
    11.11.2015/15/10 at XNUMX:XNUMX Reply
    It's strange that you say that the younger Nikons lack trigger priority. I just now started mastering the AF-ON button (I assigned it to the AF-L | AE-L button), and if you focus with this button, the shutter always works, without any focus. I thought it was a drawback, but it turns out that it should be so on decent cameras. (I only have Nikon D3200). But with normal focusing by half-pressing, the shutter is released only in focus. ”

    Getting around this limitation is very simple. To do this, just program the AE-L / AF-L button to 'AF-ON'. When the AE-L / AF-L button is pressed, autofocus is activated, and the shutter-release button can no longer be used for focusing. If you turn on the AF-C mode at the same time, the camera will already work in the release priority mode and will obediently take a picture at any time when the shutter button is pressed all the way down.

  • Madame Broshkina

    Thank Anonymous So I accidentally did the right thing. I really set the AF-C mode and use it with the back button in all cases, even when the subject is static. Very comfortably.

  • Peter Sh.

    Can I turn on / off the external flash somehow? Those. so that the flash is not taken into account when metering the exposure.

  • Peter Sh.

    I wrote in the wrong place ...

  • Madame Broshkina

    Help someone who knows exactly how. If the plot you can use only spot metering and focusing on the back button, it turns out that after focusing and rebuilding the frame, the focus point (after all, is spot metering measured in it?) Does not remain on the subject. Accordingly, exposure by pressing the shutter button will be measured by void. How to be This is very important when, for example, an actor is well lit by a spotlight on the stage, and the backdrop is almost black, that is, a very large difference in illumination, only spot measurement is needed here. Please help me figure it out. How do you, those who focus on the back button, act in such situations?

    • BB

      either use the 'desired' focus point immediately without overframing, or use exposure lock or manual mode. And you can also choose the exposure compensation ...

  • Madame Broshkina

    Thank you, BB, for the advice. I would have to block the exposure, but not see such happiness for those who do not have a separate AF-ON button. Because the button is busy with this business, which could block the exposure (AF-L \ AE-L). There are either peripheral points (somehow, I don’t really trust them), or a manual. There is no time to tinker with exposure compensation in such situations. Thanks, I will try.

  • Madame Broshkina

    Hurrah! I found in the settings how to lock the exposure!
    Nikon would not be Nikon if he did not provide such a pleasant trifle for owners of budget cameras. In the “Buttons” section of the “Settings” menu, there is a completely autonomous function “AE lock with the release button”. It can be set to "on" or "off" no matter which way to focus. When focusing in the traditional way, it, of course, does not make much sense. But when focusing with the back button, it makes a fundamental sense! Professional photographers with two-button cameras are unlikely to need this. But with the owners of the younger Nikons, who, like me, are solving this problem, I am happy to share my discovery!
    Have a nice shot! Nikon rules!

  • Vlad

    Nicon S9900 has a problem, when you press the shutter button halfway, focusing occurs, the next time you press the shutter button, the shutter does not work. After several re-releases of the shutter button, the shutter is released. Moreover, this process may not take a very long time, and then the shutter stops working again i.e. no shooting. Where can I delve into the settings or is it a defect of the f / apparatus.

  • Vadim

    Does anyone have a "focus priority" AF-C mode on the nikon d3300? As soon as he didn't try to turn it on, he doesn't want to ...

    • Arkady Shapoval

      It works there by default.

  • Novel

    Nikon D3200. With an 18-55 lens, it doesn’t allow you to shoot without focus, even in M ​​mode. That is, when I myself seem to decide sharply or not. The focus sensor did not work - the shutter does not work. But with an 18-105 lens, it clicks perfectly without pointing. By the way, life hacking with the af-l button is working. That is, at the default settings, we press the shutter button all the way, and with the thumb we press the AE-L AF-L button and the shutter fires!

  • splin11

    First of all, I want to thank you for your work ... thanks to which you can learn a lot about photography and the operation of the camera ... I think ... that your site is in demand and informative in this sense ... Thank you)
    I have a question ... it may seem naive to you) ... How to set the focus to infinity on the Nikon-5100 camera?

    • Arkady Shapoval

      It is necessary to rotate the focus ring on the lens until you achieve focus at infinity, it is best to do in manual focus mode

  • Someone

    Small inaccuracy. Nikon D5100 has NO AF priority in AF-S mode. Which is pretty annoying. In AF-C mode, the camera constantly fidgets with autofocus even after confirming focus, in AF-S it immediately stops, which makes it possible to carry out additional correction manually by moving the camera ... if not for the release lock.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      This is precisely what confirms that AF-S is focusing priority. Shutter release disabled without precise aiming

Add a comment

Copyright © Radojuva.com. Blog author - Photographer in Kiev Arkady Shapoval. 2009-2020

English-version of this article https://radojuva.com/en/2015/11/af-c-af-s-nikon-bug/