Author Topic: Back button focus on mirrorless?  (Read 2436 times)

paul hofseth

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Supplement to Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #30 on: October 26, 2020, 14:11:23 »
It may perhaps be in order to reply to myself:

I have now struggled with various menu options and almost come to peace with the Z7.

Enclosed is an example of what I regard as proof of a step towards perfection in Nikon optics, where a close crop is more or less indistiguishable from a snap taken with a reasonably good much longer lens. The jpgs are absolutely untreated as they came out of the camera apart from cropping and resizing  in order to fit within the forum image guidelines.

The strongly cropped orginal wider view was taken with Nikons  24-70 f4 at its longest setting while the less cropped one was taken with my Angenieux "DEM-APO" 180 f2,3 which at f5,6 usually gives quite sharp results./img][/img]
--------------------------
The only thing which did not work here is actually managing to get the images included.

p.


Edit: I attached the files as received from Paul, in the order "70" and "180" respectively

Birna Rørslett

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #31 on: October 26, 2020, 14:26:43 »
Use "Attachments" seen under the input text box.

The IMG tag will only work for remotely hosted images.

Edit: I got the "missing" files per e-mail and attached them to the original post.

paul hofseth

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #32 on: November 23, 2020, 10:29:11 »
I am continuing to fill this thread, but this time ad the original topic.

Focus-point-stability is totally unreliable: back buttons cannot be made inoperative-

When fishing the camera out of a deep and roomy pocket and when focussing heavy mnanual optics, various buttons are easily pressed
 so the focus point is inadvertently placed at gteh edge of the frame. The tiny joystick button will eventually return the focus point to the center, but that is one operation too much when trying to snap a picture rather than fiddling with finding the right spot at the rear of a recalcitrant camera .

Since  software provides no relief I thought of supoerglue on the joystick as a permanent solution. However, it turns out that the wheel used to chose menu items also moves the focus point, so superglue is not a permanent solution and would remove the ability to replace the point quickly. However superglue for the "i" button to prevent filling up the viewfinder with extraneous noise remains an option.

 The Nikon Z is not as bad as the Olympuses in moving the focus  and spot-metering point since the postion of the hands in supporting and focussing heavy optics less easily presses the wrong buttons, but the Z is still not the answer to easy  use of  manual focussing optics, even with an open mind to perform  the necessary surgery.

p.

Ian Watson

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #33 on: November 23, 2020, 15:15:39 »
Forgive me if you have addressed this earlier but why not press the joystick to recentre the focus point as you raise the camera? After a while it would become as automatic as turning on the camera.

As for the "i" button, can it be reprogrammed to do the same thing? If so then accidentally pressing it would not bother you.

paul hofseth

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #34 on: November 23, 2020, 20:56:59 »
sir,

a good alternative to superglue, but it is rather like a car that will start driving with its powersteering-wheels turned hard laft because you happened to touch the steering wheel, but  behaving normally when you press the windscreen wiper button. Undoubtedly a good habit to get into each time one wishes to turn the ignition hkey, but something the software and cabling should take care of.

p.

Birna Rørslett

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #35 on: November 23, 2020, 21:15:56 »
Paul, few people (withe exception of Nikon engineers, perhaps?) would argue the current operation of the Z-camera User Iinterface is perfect. However, idiosyncratic solutions are all over becoming part of our ecosystem these days, so one has to make do and learn to adapt (?).

Unfortunately, I cannot see that the "info" button can be reprogrammed. A pity.  (checked on Z5/6, but probably Z7 behaves similar).

Matthew Currie

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #36 on: November 23, 2020, 21:54:26 »
I'm entirely ignorant of the operation of mirrorless Nikons, but did they disable the feature found on DSLR's in which you press the "OK" button to recenter the focus point?  When I was using a D3200 with no lock, I often accidentally moved the focus point with handling, or with my nose, and got used to just automatically recentering it from time to time without even bothering to look.  It seems pretty intuitive and, like using the back button itself, a habit that easily becomes automatic.

David H. Hartman

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #37 on: November 24, 2020, 23:54:01 »
I find Back Button Focus regardless of the camera type allows manual focus logic with auto focus speed and accuracy. I say logic but in a short time this logic becomes a reflex. With a manual focus camera and lens I focus, grip the lens such that I lock the focus ring and lens barrel together and shoot or I follow focus and shoot. With BBF I obtain focus and either release the AF-ON button to lock the focus or hold the AF-ON button for continuous focus. I don't see how it matters if the camera is mirrorless or an SLR. With BBF focus focus happens as a reflex just as manual focus happened with a manual focus SLR and lens.

If I'm missing something please let me know.

Dave

A major frustration with my Nikon F4s was the lack of an AF-ON button. I believe at the time Canon offered such a feature on their better models.
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paul hofseth

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #38 on: November 25, 2020, 08:54:11 »
Yes,thanks for well intended suggestions.  Buttons and autofocus does work, but I use manual focus lenses which do not require any button pushing beyond 100% enlargement on the front F1, but  the focus point has to stay centered without routine delays, so I repeaat my metaphor;

A car servosteering that veers unpredictably and strongly to the left unless you immediately touch the windscreenwiper switch is unnecessarily  bothersome.

Even though software bugs and shortcomings are are common, such.engineer laziness as omitting a switchoff of this "feature"  should be uprooted.

Luckily, my Angenieux , Zeiss and Leitz lenses have quite flat fields, so the focus point fault does not matter for landscapes at infinity, but yesterdays snaps of a tree could not benefit from that when the focus point was in the wrong place.

Trees do not walk away, so  a bit of fumbling is inconsequential. Photograping stationary  motives (even using the old trick of pre-focussing on a particular spot  that something  fast moving  will pass) is perfectly compatible with buttonjuggling..

p.

MILLIREHM

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #39 on: November 25, 2020, 23:14:11 »

A major frustration with my Nikon F4s was the lack of an AF-ON button. I believe at the time Canon offered such a feature on their better models.
The F4 was a great camera but with a very rudimentary and not very sophisticated AF system - and yes something like AF-ON was badly missing. There was also no Menu where you could disable pressing down shutter release so implementing AF-ON would have required some other solution to switch
Wolfgang Rehm

Erik Lund

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #40 on: November 26, 2020, 11:16:02 »
I use Back button focus on mirror less very little,,,

However; The two front F1 and F2 function buttons have the worst 'tactile feedback' of any Nikon SLR/DSLR camera I have ever used.
They are mushy and wiggly - There is not clear reliable feedback at all unless i place my finger perfectly in the right position when activating them  :o :o :o

On the other hand - I never activate any of the buttons of the Nikon Z7 by mistake with my fingers/hands - All buttons seems to be very well thought out, just not identical to the D850 so that is quite annoying, I also miss the illuminated top and rear buttons a lot!

The only real issue with accidental touching buttons is on the F5, my hands are so large that the palm of my hand activates the shutter button for the vertical shutter/AF button,,, cost me a lot of film rolls before I learned to be more aware of the handling.
Erik Lund

Birna Rørslett

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #41 on: November 26, 2020, 11:43:02 »
Finger (and hand) size must come into play as far as the handling of the Z cameras are concerned. Unlike Erik, I have no trouble with the F1/F2 buttons, but do unintentionally move the focus point around a lot. I programmed all candidate buttons with a "reset to centre" functionality, so the annoyance is largely circumvented, but of course is still lurking in the background as it were. I really wish the focus point could be easily locked.

Bent Hjarbo

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #42 on: November 26, 2020, 12:58:53 »
I only have trouble with the front buttons when using gloves, but that is unfortunate nearly 4 months per year ;)

David H. Hartman

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Re: Back button focus on mirrorless?
« Reply #43 on: November 26, 2020, 23:26:02 »
However; The two front F1 and F2 function buttons have the worst 'tactile feedback' of any Nikon SLR/DSLR camera I have ever used.
They are mushy and wiggly - There is not clear reliable feedback at all unless i place my finger perfectly in the right position when activating them  :o :o :o

Tactile feel is so important. I want a nice crisp micro switch wherever possible. When I used wired remote release cables with my Nikons I modified the MC-12A cord to have a clean, almost zero backlash feel. That release used a crisp micro switch. It was great in the era. The Nikon MC-12B by contrast used a mushy sliding switch.Now I use a Phottix Strato II remote flash trigger as a radio shutter release. It has the clean micro switch I need as a test, open flash button.


I would hope Nikon designers and engineers would understand the need for a clean, crisp feel for all buttons on a camera. I guess not.

The only real issue with accidental touching buttons is on the F5, my hands are so large that the palm of my hand activates the shutter button for the vertical shutter/AF button,,, cost me a lot of film rolls before I learned to be more aware of the handling. The MC-12B was mushy by contrast. I think the MC-12B used a sliding switch. >:(

I remember having a Nikon MC-12A remote release cord accidentally set in the lock position. When I pressed the release on the MC-12A my F5 dutifully exposed all 36 frames of color slide film. Damn it happened so fast! I used Dymo label tape to disable the locking feature on the MC-12A so this never happened again. If memory serves me I used the MC-12A on my F4 and D2H with an MC-25 adapter.

Dave
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