Nikon D4 AF-ON custom setting anomaly - exposure regardless of focus

Started Jun 18, 2012 | Discussions thread
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JoshuaMB Regular Member • Posts: 381
Nikon D4 AF-ON custom setting anomaly - exposure regardless of focus

Hello, been a long time since I've posted on here, but I come hoping this huge community can help me figure out an anomaly I have encountered that Nikon deems normal and is in fact a modification requested by photographers...

I have always set all of my cameras to AF-ON as the only button that initiates auto focus. This allows me to focus and lock focus (in AF-S mode) and recompose and shoot, and keep focus locked during multiple exposures (one after the other, not on the same "frame"). It is my preferred setting.

With the D4 set that way, the AF-ON button initiates auto focus like normal, but will expose images irrespective of focus achieved or locked. ie. You can just hit the shutter button whether the image is focused or not, and it will expose, whether in AF-S or AF-C mode, in fact even with the lens cap on. Basically it acts like AF-C where exposure is the priority, not focus.

I thought it was a flaw in my D4, and inquired about it, and the answer back was that this is normal and in fact a modification requested by shooters. It seems contrary to me, or something that should have within it a further custom function where you could decided whether you want focus to be the priority or exposure. I turned AF-ON custom function off, so now both the trigger button and the AF-ON button initiate auto focus but exposure only happens when focus is locked. I use a D3 and D4 side by side. The D3 is set so that only AF-ON initiates auto focus, so needless to say, the lack of continuity between the two is not desirable.

Can anyone concur that their D4 operates the same way? Does anyone else feel this change isn't desirable, and that in fact it would be nice to have an option to choose whether focus lock or exposure is the preference when choosing the AF-ON button as the only auto focus initiator?

Nikon D3 Nikon D4
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