D7000 AF perfect - FINALLY

Started Oct 21, 2012 | Discussions thread
Jim Holtz
Contributing MemberPosts: 757
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Re: B team
In reply to Barry Fitzgerald, Oct 22, 2012

Barry Fitzgerald wrote:

Mako I don't want to get heavy here but "butt out" I think sums up my thinking. You spend 95% of your time trawling the forums like a Nikon sponsored poster mostly dismissing any issues that Nikon "clearly have" with this model and late production D90's too (I'm in contact with a number of folks who say they've seen the same thing)

There is no doubt in my mind that with 2 D7000's I bought recently that the BF problems are "very much alive" and not resolved. I'm also not convinced with Nikon service, and I'm not alone in having to send bodies to them multiple times to address problems.

I've taken a hard line approach with Nikon I've already paid for postage to their service..so they can pick up the tab on this one. I'm also not in the mood for spending weeks without a body yet again. So I have to say Nikon's QC is pretty awful..and I'm not entirely convinced with their support/servicing either.

So rather than wasting your time trying to question if I got defective bodies..spend it in a more productive way. D7k is the "most talked about AF issue" Nikon DSLR ever..the focus problems are not myth..they are factual and down to poor QC at Nikon's factory. This is entirely unsatisfactory so unless there is some serious bending over backwards from Nikon..it's very likely I'll just re-use my Minolta lens collection with a more up to date A mount body.

I'm not crazy about Sony..but I'm even less crazy about all the AF hassles I've had. I also know of a few folks who have gone through 4/5 D7000 bodies only to fine exactly the same thing back focus..lots of it on every body even with pro grade Nikkor lenses. D7k issues are far from over..2 years into production and still problems that should have been put to bed ages ago

Barry,

Seriously???? Here are the settings and proper test process that must be followed to have any kind of valid data. Save the "I know what I'm doing" BS because you obviously don't. I've resisted getting involved in any of your threads because because you exhibit every characteristic of a troll and I try not to feed trolls.

If you're having focus or sharpness issues with your D7000, try this before sending it to Nikon or exchanging it.
(from Jonikon)
After a good amount of testing different AF settings of my D7000, I have settled on some settings that give me the most versatile AF mode with the most accurate results. I find this method superior to the AF-ON mode.
Set AF mode to AF-C
a1 AF-C priority set to* Focus* (this is very important!).
a3 Set to OFF.
a6 Number of focus points = 39
f5 Assign AEL/AFL button to AF lock only.
I choose the number of AF points base on the requirements of my subject.
· 1 or 9 points for static objects.
· 9 points for slow or predictable direction moving subjects.
· 21 points for erratic moving subjects (like hummingbirds), that only fill a small portion of the scene.
With this AF set-up, keep your shutter button half pressed so the lens continuously adjusts focus until you actually fully depress the shutter. Focus and re-compose is accomplished by pushing and holding down the AFL button after subject focus is achieved.
I hope some will find these AF settings suggestions helpful to achieve more reliable AF results.
(From Chuck Westfall)
This is the test process to follow that isn't flawed like all of the angled testing that is commonly done:

  1. Mount the camera to a sturdy tripod.
  2. Position a reference target for the camera to focus on. The reference target should have sufficient contrast for the AF system to read, should be flat and parallel to the camera's focal plane, and should be centered with respect to the picture area.
  3. Lighting should be bright and even.
  4. Camera-to-subject distance should be no less than 50 times the focal length of the lens. For a 50mm lens, that would be at least 2.5 meters, or approximately 8.2 feet.
  5. Set the lens for AF and the camera for One-Shot AF, and manually select the center focusing point.
  6. Shoot at the maximum aperture of the lens via manual mode or aperture-priority AE, and adjust the exposure level if necessary to achieve an accurate exposure of the reference target. Use a low ISO setting to reduce noise.
  7. If the lens has an image stabilizer, shut it off.
  8. Use a remote switch and/or the camera's self-timer to release the shutter. Use mirror lock as well.
  9. Take three sets of images at microadjustment settings of -5, 0 and +5, i.e, three consecutive images at -5, three consecutive images at 0, and three consecutive images at +5.
  10. Examine the resulting images on your computer monitor at 100% pixel magnification.
  11. Take additional sets of test images at different microadjustment settings if necessary until the sharpest image is achieved.
  12. Register the corresponding microadjustment settings in the camera.

Here are a few additional precautions to observe:
• Do not attempt to autofocus on an angled chart, because doing so will degrade the consistency of the camera's focusing measurement. Keep in mind that the camera's AF sensor is comprised of multiple pairs of linear pixel arrays. If you attempt to autofocus on a single line in an angled focusing chart, only a few pixels from each active pixel array will "see" the target. Ideally, the contrast in the reference target should cover the entire area of the camera's center focusing point, and the reference target should be perfectly parallel to the camera's focal plane.
• For best results, manually set the focus on the lens to infinity for every exposure before allowing the camera to autofocus the reference target.
• Expect some minor variations in focusing accuracy within each set of three test images, even though they were all taken at the same microadjustment setting. This is completely normal, and is due to the tolerances of the camera's AF system.
• Expect smaller microadjustment settings to have a greater effect with telephoto lenses, and vice versa for wide-angle lenses.
• If you are attempting to set microadjustments for a zoom lens, it is important to realize that the camera's setting may only be accurate for the focal length setting you test. The instruction book suggests testing at the longest focal length of the lens, but you may find it more efficient to choose the focal length you use most often.
I hope this will help those experiencing soft images.

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