Transient W.A.S.P. wrote in post #18018428
Is this an auto vs manual focus issue? To be honest, when I was looking through the viewfinder everything seemed to be in focus. Looking at the image review on the screen everything looked good. I only saw it was blurred once I uploaded the images to my computer. Also, is the metering a problem?
AF potentially through you off a bit here, but it isn't the AF specifically. Focus happens on a plane; there is only one point in space where the camera actually focuses, and then you have (conceptually) a box that expands in front of and behind that point in which things will be 'acceptably' in focus. This is your depth of field; the area in which your frame is acceptably in focus. In this image, you've used a larger aperture which gives a much more narrow depth of field AND it appears that focus landed around the front of the bridge (I assume this is where AF came into the issue). This means you're only, basically, getting the benefit of the back half of that conceptual box of in-focus space.
Looking through the viewfinder and using the review screen does not show enough detail of the scene to determine what is in focus and what isn't. They're simply too small. If you use Live View on the rear screen and zoom in to 10x, THEN you can gauge where your focus is a bit better.
Do some reading on hyperfocal distances and how you can make use of that concept. Just do your reading with a grain of salt; modern cameras/lenses have too short of a focus travel ("throw) and the distance scales are...estimates, at best. But, it can be used to better estimate where you need your focus to fall, within the frame, at a given focal length and aperture, in order to get the desired amount of your frame to be in focus.
Metering doesn't look too bad there for this type of a scene...it's dark at night Your White Balance might be something you want to tweak a bit when you're shooting scenes lit with those sodium vapor lights, which make everything orange. But that's an easy post processing tweak.