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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #1
PMan0
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Default FTM Focus - When do you use it?

I own and love my Canon 70-200 F4 L but just started realizing that I don't use its FTM focus feature. When does this feature typically come in handy?

Where do you find yourself most often using it?

Am I missing out by not using it?
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #2
tfd888
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

It's a very handy thing to have. For people that AF using the * button, they can just MF at anytime without having to flip the MF switch and instantly start AF if need be.
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #3
crn3371
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

I really don't think you're missing out on much. With the dim viewfinders and lousy focus screens on most dslr's manual focusing is kind of a pain. The only lens I manually focus with is my macro.
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #4
PMan0
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tfd888 View Post
It's a very handy thing to have. For people that AF using the * button, they can just MF at anytime without having to flip the MF switch and instantly start AF if need be.
Okay, so I do use the * buttom to AF - would I AF first with this button and then 'tweak' using the focus ring? Then lock exposure with half shutter press (recompose if necessary) and shoot?

Paul
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #5
BlueTsunami
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

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Originally Posted by PMan0 View Post
Okay, so I do use the * buttom to AF - would I AF first with this button and then 'tweak' using the focus ring? Then lock exposure with half shutter press (recompose if necessary) and shoot?

Paul
Exposure locking and Auto Focusing can be interchanged (as far as what goes first) but its usually the Manual Focusing that's done after Auto Focusing (one case being Focus and Recomposing, and adjusting the focus for the slight change in focus).

One may want to exposure lock first (like the sky... so half press the shutter first), Auto Focus on the subject (using whatever focus points), if the composition calls for the subject to be outside the AF points thats when you recompose and touch up via Manual Focus.
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #6
phreeky
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

On my lenses without full-time MF I've NEVER missed it. That's not to say that others don't find it useful, but I really do think people overstate its importance.

In fact I also think that of AF speed. Cheap consumer telephoto zooms have very little trouble tracking a jet zipping past in my experience. Ironically I think the slower focusing lenses are the ones that need full-time MF more as you can then easily twist the focus to near-enough and then AF quickly from there.
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #7
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

I only MF with my MF lenses or when shooting macro or near macro. The importance of MF override on USM lenses is highly overstated, imho.
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #8
tfd888
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PMan0 View Post
Okay, so I do use the * buttom to AF - would I AF first with this button and then 'tweak' using the focus ring? Then lock exposure with half shutter press (recompose if necessary) and shoot?

Paul
That or not even AF at all and MF the whole shot without ever touching the * button.

What I'm getting at is that it's very easy to switch back and forth between AF and MF if need be using this method or to correct the focus after AF'ing if need be without having to fumble for the switch in tough lighting conditions or take your eye away from the viewfinder.
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #9
PMan
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tfd888 View Post
That or not even AF at all and MF the whole shot without ever touching the * button.

What I'm getting at is that it's very easy to switch back and forth between AF and MF if need be using this method or to correct the focus after AF'ing if need be without having to fumble for the switch in tough lighting conditions or take your eye away from the viewfinder.
This makes absolute sense - I've never tried it. Next time I get outside with my camera (a bit cold and snowing right now) I'll certainly test drive the FTM focus.

Paul
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #10
KCMO Al
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

Air shows with my 100-400. I can zoom in to 100 to pick up the plane as it begins it's cross, then zoom out and compose and focus with the push/pull focus ring. Very handy and works very well. Also as stated, macro. I set the magnification I want, then use the focus rail to isolate what I want in focus. (I also use M exposure for both of these situations as well.)
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #11
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

only when I have an extension tube on my 85 do I MF.
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Old 2nd of February 2010 (Tue)   #12
Sean
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

I have been using FTM on my 300 F4L IS with spectacular results. I have a feeling my AF Micro Adjustments are off, and just haven't re-brickwalled that combination to my satisfaction. Manual focus has been stellar however. Can't get enough of it.
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Old 3rd of February 2010 (Wed)   #13
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Default Re: FTM Focus - When do you use it?

It's very useful for tracking or getting initial focus on birds hidden in foliage before hitting the AF button.
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