"If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." Thu 09-Feb-12 02:28 AM by output555
So I bought one of the very first D7000s last year. I'd already owned a D40, D60, D90, D300 and D700 (still have it) and had high expectations for the newest Nikon DSLR. Unfortunately, the D7000 gave me heartburn from the very first set of photos. Rather than being 16MP sharp, I got far too many slightly out-of-focus images much too often.
I checked the forums and many experts said the problem was with the user, not the camera. Although I've been shooting for 40 years, I was willing to humble myself and admit, maybe I just didn't understand the new focusing system of the D7000 (although it really isn't much different than any other camera's system).
I struggled with the D7000 for months, finding way too many blurry images that simply couldn't be due to my incompetence. It wasn't the lenses' fault either because they were excellent on every other Nikon. And, please don't tell me those extra 4MP of resolution revealed their flaws. Nonsense.
Eventually I just stopped using the D7000. It was too frustrating not knowing if I was going to get a crisp image or something slightly blurry and, therefore, totally useless. The D7000 sat in my camera bag collecting dust. I felt like I'd wasted $1300.
Then I decided, to hell with the so-called experts, I'm going to let Nikon tell me I'm nuts. I sent the body to the Melviile, NY service center explaining the problem. In less than two weeks the camera came back...and, wait for it...the problem was gone. Every image produced subsequently was razor sharp and in crispy clear focus. Same user, same lenses, nothing had changed except the camera's internal adjustments. A simple repair and all was good.
So, if you're experiencing focusing issues and everyone on Nikonians or at your local camera shop is telling you it's all in your head (re: lack of brains or mental disorder), tell them they're the delusional ones. Most likely the problem is in the D7000 and should be (and CAN be) fixed ASAP.
As a final note, even though the now-repaired D7000 was 100% satisfactory, I decided the love was gone (hard to overcome a lack of trust, you know) and sold it. Still needing a back-up for my D700, I bought a D5100 on sale at Christmas and fell instantly in love. It's not as sophisticated as the D7000, but out-of-the box it gave me nothing but amazing images--and complete trust.
#3. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 0
>So, if you're experiencing focusing issues and everyone on >Nikonians or at your local camera shop is telling you it's all >in your head (re: lack of brains or mental disorder), tell >them they're the delusional ones. Most likely the problem is >in the D7000 and should be (and CAN be) fixed ASAP.
I'm afraid that is no more accurate than saying that the D7000 NEVER has a sharpness problem. It's great that your camera is now operating correctly, but to deduce that most cases of unsharpness are also due to a camera fault is not helpful.
#5. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 0
> I checked the forums and many experts said the problem was with the user, not the camera.
Look carefully. Many of those posts said that given the input and the test, it was not possible to tell whether it was the camera or the user. And outside of the D7000, it virtually always is the user. Even on the D7000, I still think that most of the examples shown demonstrate USER error. That's not to say that the camera can't be at fault, but it is a lot harder to tell than most users are showing.
_____ Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member
My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!
#6. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 0
While I respect the opinions of both Brian’s and don’t categorically disagree with what they said, I cannot agree 100% either.
I can both empathize and identify with output555. Although I wouldn’t share his decision to get rid of a camera that was properly repaired and working correctly just because of the experience before it was repaired.
While I didn’t have the focus issues that others have had (some of which were the bodies fault), I did have the right side debris collection issue which the nay-sayers insisted couldn’t be lubricant/oil and had to be dust and most likely the result of improper lens changing technique.
My advice, if you truly feel there is something wrong with your camera, stop looking for confirmation from online forums and send you camera in for Nikon to check. There’s no guarantee that Nikon will get it right, but at least you will have it documented that the issue occurred during the warranty period if a related catastrophic failure should occur when it’s out of warranty.
#8. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 0
It is regretful that you had your negative experience. Most of the forum posts found that there indeed was a user error while there certainly were some bodies that were malfunctioning.
I would believe that the forums are people helping people with the understanding that the only true method of determining what is wrong is to let the technical experts thoroughly check the camera. Especially if advice from the forum family does not help the issue. Although there is a tremendous wealth of information within the forums, your 40 years experience plus seeing the results of your shots should have led you to contact Nikon earlier. Had you done so perhaps you would not have fallen out with a really good camera.
I have had my D7000 for over a year and fortunately have had no issues; except for user error. It's great that you have been able to find a camera that you can fully trust. That makes photography really click.
Nobody should seek his own good, but the good of others. <><
#9. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 6
> >My advice, if you truly feel there is something wrong with >your camera, stop looking for confirmation from online forums >and send you camera in for Nikon to check. There’s no >guarantee that Nikon will get it right, but at least you will >have it documented that the issue occurred during the warranty >period if a related catastrophic failure should occur when >it’s out of warranty. > >Pete >
#10. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 6 Fri 10-Feb-12 01:33 PM by briantilley
In my view, the suggestion to undertake robust testing and then take the problem up with Nikon (or the retailer, depending on the timeframe) if necessary is exactly the right one! Sadly, there will always be some faulty examples of any type of camera
Other types of response may result when the original post says one of two things: either something along the lines of "it can't possibly be me" or "there is a design fault with the D7000".
In my experience, those who post about a problem while keeping an open mind about the cause almost always receive the first type of response at Nikonians
#11. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 3 Fri 10-Feb-12 01:40 PM by output555
>>So, if you're experiencing focusing issues and everyone >on >>Nikonians or at your local camera shop is telling you it's >all >>in your head (re: lack of brains or mental disorder), >tell >>them they're the delusional ones. Most likely the problem >is >>in the D7000 and should be (and CAN be) fixed ASAP. > >I'm afraid that is no more accurate than saying that the D7000 >NEVER has a sharpness problem. It's great that your camera is >now operating correctly, but to deduce that most cases of >unsharpness are also due to a camera fault is not helpful.
Brian, I would say the opposite to you in response. It's my opinion based on the widespread number of complaints about focus issues with the D7000 that there was a very real production problem (be it software or hardware) with a significant number of the models. When so-called experts deny something is wrong (as you continue to appear to be doing here) they do a disservice to owners and undermine their own credibility. I never said every D7000 was flawed--or intended my post to be interpreted that way--but mine definitely was and in all likelihood so are many others with similar focus issues. My post was intended to give guidance to those, like me, who were mislead by bad advice.
#13. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 11 Fri 10-Feb-12 03:46 PM by briantilley
Any difference of opinion between us is a matter of scale.
We both seem to agree that some examples of the D7000 have been improved by a visit to Nikon service. It's your deduction that "there was a very real production problem" is where we part company. My impression is that the volume of complaints was pretty typical for new models - whether Nikon or another brand - and I've been watching the aftermath of Nikon DSLR launches here since the D70 We saw some D7000 issues that - like yours - did turn out to be camera faults, but more that were rectified by a change in technique or expectation.
Overplaying the seriousness or frequency of a fault is just as problematical as denying that any cameras are defective or not asdmitting the possibility of user error. These aren't good ways to attract calm and constructive responses, though as always we still try our best to help
#14. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 8
I'm one of those who have been having problems with my D7k. In the start it got unnoticed by me due to eye infection (couldn't use the camera for few months). Because of that when I went to Italy the camera problems almost ruined my photographs, fortunatly I used Nikon 18-105 VR so DOF cover the issue mostly.
Past 1 1/2 months my camera has gone to Nikon for repair/service twice and the first time it was autofocus adjusted but the 2nd time the technician told me to use AF-Lock more, which I thought quite unappriate response because I send examples of my issue with my camera in the 2nd time.
I've put up samples on my website at http://falcon-creations.com/d7000-focus/ were you can download NEF files if you like to explore my problems. I'm also waiting recommendation from Nikon if I should replace my camera or not.
I would like if you could check those files and give me your advice and comments. The most obvious examples of my problem is in the tripod folder and specially last 4 files.
#15. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 0 Sat 24-Mar-12 03:00 PM by JPJ
Sorry your camera was broken, I am happy it was fixed. I still don't understand why you got rid of it after it was fixed, but your happy and that is all that counts when it comes to camera ownership.
I join the chorus of people who have said that there are no more defective d7000's then any other camera on the market (I have always said there clearly are some). I further join them in stating that the overwhelming number of complaints I have seen about the d7000 or any other camera for that matter focus relates to user error/technique issues/improper use of AF/unreasonable expectation of AF.
I would also echo the point made earlier in this thread about the tone of the OP. If you have a focus issue and it turns out to be the camera by all means this is valuable information to share. Some key information may include: what the problem was, what you did to test it, what Nikon's response was, cost, response time, etc. This is helpful information. Blasting people who upon being told about a focus issue don't automatically jump to the conclusion that a camera is defective or needs repair (which I will suggest is a diagnosis reached by excluding other, more likely factors first) is not helpful.
The reason so many people here make inquiries, suggest technique changes, suggest better testing methods, is many, many people have had success fixing "focus problems" with this advice. Feel free to search the archived messages for yourself.
#16. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 14
>I would like if you could check those files and give me your >advice and comments. The most obvious examples of my problem >is in the tripod folder and specially last 4 files.
Well Stefan, I commend you for your tenacity.
You provided a bit to many samples, but I guess to many is better than none!!
Unfortunately, while the samples you provide mimic a real world shot, they really don’t prove much. When trying to diagnose and calibrate an AF system you need to provide a clear, concise, unambiguous and properly aligned target.
All of your examples have targets that can provide multiple depths in the image field for the AF system to lock onto. Others appear to be low light, low contrast which can bring any AF system to its knees even if its working properly.
It’s also important to remember that the AF sensor extends quite a bit beyond the focus marker. When I mapped mine I found the center cross point was three times the width and height (one square on both sides, top and bottom of the center marker). Also AF systems work within a tolerable range. If critical focus were important, then manual focus would be a better option.
Also when comparing D80 images to D7000 images, there is significant difference in the amount of enlargement at 100%view between the two. So images where the AF was marginal on the D80 might very well look reasonably sharp on screen, where as the same marginal error on the D7000 will be quite apparent at 100% view.
#17. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 16
Thank you for your comment Pete. I should have mentioned that my camera shows these errors also outdoors although at little improved success rate. I live in Iceland were we have low light 4-5 months a year so if D7k focus system can't handle that then D7k is a failure. However, I know other people here which are happy with their D7k so it seems to me that I have been struck by bad luck. At least as it is I can't really on my camera so I will probably need to get an replacement which I will sell for some cash towards my preordered D800. I won't dump my copy of D7k on another user.
#18. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 17
Well sorry to hear that your D7000 is troublesome.
I must admit that originally I thought I did not have any AF issues as others have, but did have the right side debris collection which Nikon took care of for me. But I have to admit that while I thought my AF worked fine before, it seems to be even better now after the repair and recalibration.
#20. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 19
I was one of those who wandered the forums claiming my camera had a back focus issue, and could only work properly with my primes rolled out to minus 15 or minus 20 on the AF Fine Tune. Taking the chance to do some minor repair work, I sent it to the shop, and when it came back all my lenses are doing their best between plus 5 and zero on the Fine Tune, good enough for me to leave AF Fine Tune off, for now. So, the problem was acknowledged and dealt with by the technician.
http://egozarolho.blogspot.com 1. Good content, good aesthetics and good tecnique. On that order. 2. Light is more important than glass and pixels. 3. In the digital photography process, software is as important as gear.
#21. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 20
Maybe there is hope for me then? I read these post back in January when my d7000 was only a month old and I was convinced that I had to work harder at getting all my shots sharp. Some are great but some are not and it has been frustrating since my old d90 and even older d70 worked effortlessly. It is when I compaired same case shots with "live view' versus "through the viewfinder" that I realized that the "live view" got it right on track with subject in focus and background out, whereas the viewfinder taking the same scenerio has the subject soft with the background sharp. I am convinced something is not right. I tried fine tuning for the heck of it and at -14 the focus cleared up quite a bit but maybe not quite as sharp as live view . I would prefer for it to be right without this fine tuning so I may have to send it in for calibration. Now here is another thing I tried. 40 years ago when I shot film and used to have to focus manually, I would zoom tight , focus on my subjects eye, lock the focus, pull back my zoom to compose and release the shutter to take the photo. Since digital I got lazy and just point, focus and shoot. When I used this method tonight ( without the fine tuning) I found that the focus on the subject was sharp when I viewed it later magnified( because in essence I was focusing in a zoomed position but taking the photo pulled back) . When I shot the same subject and focused from a distance , the subject was not as sharp when viewed later magnified. HOWEVER, when I used fine tuning of -14 the subject was sharp whether or not I focused from afar or from a zoom and back off to take the photo. I hope I making sense. I also hope I can get this fixed so I can just point, focus and shoot because it is quite difficult trying to shoot moving targets and locking the focus while zooming in and out at the same time. Maybe I am missing something? I am not sure yet myself. I may do a 2 button reset tomorrow and see if that changes anything. Maybe I am too fussy? These somewhat out of focus photos probably wouldn't even be noticable in a 4X6 print but I would like to get what I paid for in the megapixal category for viewing and, or for cropping.
#22. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 21
Not all lenses have the same focus point zoomed that they have pulled back. My guess is that it is coincidence that the focus fine tuning resolves your issue.
You should be able to get sharp images with the D7000. As suggested in the post, send it to Nikon for repair. I'm getting very sharp images with 2 different copies of the D7000 purchased 9 months apart.
#23. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 22
Eric- Oh I am sure it is a lucky strike when I fine tuned it. I tried + first and really worse back focusing , then tried increments at -6, -10 etc. and finally -14 and they all improved the distant focusing but it probably isn't the optimum setting since this was just trial and error method. I am waiting for Nikon to repond with the files I sent for them to view and if they say to send it in; I will do it . I appreciate that some of you people who have their cameras recalibrated have shared that they have had improvement and I am hoping for the same resolution . Thanks
#24. "RE: If you've been told D7000 focus issues are a myth..." In response to Reply # 0
The verdict is in! Sent my d7000 to nikon and had them repair under warranty and IT WAS NOT USER! The camera was out of adjustment and since December I have struggling with back focus issues, working on my technique since so many posters said that is was due to user technique. NOT! Tried the camera out yesterday and today and wow! Back to where I used to shoot with my D90- tac sharp where the focus point is and DOF right on where it should be. Anyone doubting their D7000 af focus should send it in for evaluation. I'm glad I did read some posts where this was a remedy. The D7000 is a great camera but I do believe that back focus can be a problem for MANY of them. I have come to this assumption because too many people have had this problem and this is the first time in over 40 years that I have ever had to have a NIKON camera repaired and guess which model? D7000 By the way I did not send my lens with it- only body and it was returned from NY in 10 days. I am a happy camper now.