Nikon's smaller focus points causing me grief..?

Started Nov 7, 2011 | Discussions thread
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John Kemp
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Nikon's smaller focus points causing me grief..?
Nov 7, 2011

Hi there.

Ever since moving from Canon 1 series (as a pro for 20 years) I am finding difficulty with auto-focussing my Nikon D3s.

When I'm shooting portraits the camera hunts around trying to find focus, when using single point spot. It takes too much time and sometimes never finds it.

I think the trouble lies when the focus point lies on the skin area of the face, rather than say eyes or lips. There seems to not be enough detail in plain skin to focus on.

My Canons used to have fewer points and therefore - I believe they were larger in area and invariably covered an eye or mouth, whereas the Nikons are so tiny they cannot span a big enough area to find enough contrast to focus on.

My feeling is that Canon managed to find areas of minute detail in, say, a cheek whereas my Nikon won't.

When one's shooting family portraits in the studio or weddings where the pace is fast then it's not always possible to align the focus spot on an eye.

Nikon's smaller points may be better for more distant objects and sports but maybe not for closer up subjects with larger areas of poor contrast/ detail...?

Any help achieving more reliable focus for portraits? Anyone Else crossed over from Canon and found it harder to get a quick focus?I also find it worse in indoor light compared to my Canon 1ds mk2 and 3.

Advice/ suggestions welcome.
John
--
Canon> Nikon convert.

D3x, D3s, 24-70 f2.8, 70-200 f2.8II, 105 f2.8 macro, 1.4 conv, SB900x3 16-35 f2.8

Canon EOS-1Ds Nikon D3S Nikon D3X
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