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ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Thu 01-Sep-11 03:15 AM
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"Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"


Atlanta, US
          

Last week I took a D300 and D7000 to a workshop on black bear photography. While I expected the D7000 to outperform the D300, I found it lacking in several areas and was looking for feedback from others.

ISO
High ISO performance of the D7000 was as good or better than the D300. My take is it is about a stop better in terms of noise at high ISO levels. Overall the D7000 was a winner in this area because shooting black bears in cloudy or shady conditions required ISO levels ranging from 640 to 3200.

AF-On
Black bears are fast moving subjects. Their heads are constantly in motion making it hard to achieve focus. With AF-On I was able to pre-focus on an expected head position and adjust if needed. The D300 performed very well. The D7000 does not appear to have any AF-On type setting - and I lost some images due to inability to focus or focus hunting at the time of key action. Particularly problematic was photographing a black bear shaking off water. The D7000 performed about the same as the D300 without AF-On - okay but not truly satisfactory. My D300 was my go to camera for the trip because of this factor.

AF Speed
The D7000 seemed pretty good, but no better than the D300 with regard to AF speed. I used the 70-200 and 200-400 lenses interchangeably on both cameras. The D7000 was good with AF speed but overall the D300 seemed better.

Focus points
The D7000 has 39 focus points compared to the D300's 51 focus points. The D7000 lacks about 3 AF sensors in each corner aalong the top and bottom. Given the lack of AF-On, I found myself using the shutter to focus. The lack of sensors in the corners gave me more centered compositions. I would have really liked at least one more sensor in each corner. This is a bit of a challenge with environmental wildlife images and less of a problem for regular wildlife portraits.

Mode selector wheel
On four occasions over the past 10 days I lost images due to inadvertent changes from Aperture Priority to Shutter or Manual Mode. This was a relatively big problem and while I am aware to watch for the issue, it does impact the level of trust - especially in situations where you cannot chimp.

Sharpness
This one has come up before, but I had no problem with sharpness on my D7000. I did increase the sharpness setting for in camera images. Overall the D7000 is just fine as far as sharpness if I achieve AF.

Auto ISO / Manual Mode
The D7000 was just fine working in Manual Mode and leaving auto ISO to adjust exposure. There was no change compared to my D300.

Controls and layout
I found the controls to be a little harder to use on the D7000. The ISO adjustment required the use of a button on the back rather than on the top of the camera. It was harder to find by touch compared to D300 and other models. The Multi Selector knob was also a bit hard to find on the smaller body, but that was not a major issue.

This was the first time I had used the D7000 or my D300 cameras in such demanding conditions. The D7000 performs fine most of the time but I finished the trip less satisfied overall with its performance. I wonder if others have similar observations - or alternative setups for wildlife.


Eric Bowles
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mrginhop Silver Member Nikonian since 29th Mar 2009Thu 01-Sep-11 03:34 AM
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#1. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 0


Newfields, US
          

Eric-

Every observation you made is spot on with my own experience as well. I too have shot in intense wildlife situations with the D300 & D7000. I have found myself reverting to the D300 as the go to camera for many of the same reasons you point out plus the limited buffer on the D7000 since I do a lot of BIFs. As you note the D7000 has it over the D300 on the high ISO/low noise issue. Bottomline: I wish I had the D7000 sensor in my D300 body!

Mike

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GCDawn Registered since 18th Dec 2010Thu 01-Sep-11 06:50 AM
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#2. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 0


Gold Coast, AU
          

I set my AE-L/AF-L button to AF-ON, works a treat with my little hands. Custom menu f5 or press INFO button twice and it's on the bottom row.
Dawn.

  

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billD80 Silver Member Nikonian since 22nd Jan 2007Thu 01-Sep-11 12:46 PM
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#5. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 2


US
          

>I set my AE-L/AF-L button to AF-ON, works a treat with my
>little hands. Custom menu f5 or press INFO button twice and
>it's on the bottom row.
>Dawn.

Yes, I was wondering if this was tried.

Also, did you use 3D AutoFocus? I've never shot moving bears, but this worked like a charm with dancers...

www.billkeane.zenfolio.com

  

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ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Thu 01-Sep-11 12:47 PM
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#6. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 2


Atlanta, US
          

Thanks, Dawn - I actually tried this some but obviously need to test it and use it more.

Have you seen a difference between this button and the AF-On with other cameras?

Eric Bowles
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billD80 Silver Member Nikonian since 22nd Jan 2007Thu 01-Sep-11 05:00 PM
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#10. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 6


US
          

>Have you seen a difference between this button and the AF-On
>with other cameras?
>

OK, I should say I don't use the D7000 AE-L/AF-L button for focus, but let me just jump in and say, IMO, the feel and position seem fundamentally identical to the D200 I used to have. This may not apply to the D300/s, but I'd be surprised if it's far off.

www.billkeane.zenfolio.com

  

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ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Thu 01-Sep-11 08:03 PM
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#14. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 10


Atlanta, US
          

Thanks, Bill

The D7000 is significantly smaller than my D200 and D300. That's a plus when you need to travel light, if you have small hands, or if you need a lighter weight body.

The D200 and D300 have the AF-On button to the left of the rear control dial and directly above the multi selector. The smaller form of the D7000 eliminates the AF-On button and puts that function on the AE-L/AF-L button slightly to the left. The multi-selector button is a little lower than on the D200/D300.

With the grip in a vertical position, the controls are very near the position of the D200/D300. I actually prefer the feel of the D7000 with the grip - but that defeats the purpose of the smaller size.

The positipon of the controls does not make much difference and I am sure you would adapt to it with a single camera. With both a D7000 and a D300 / D700 type body, the controls are not quite as intuitive as to location.

Eric Bowles
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GCDawn Registered since 18th Dec 2010Thu 01-Sep-11 07:52 PM
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#13. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 6


Gold Coast, AU
          


>Have you seen a difference between this button and the AF-On
>with other cameras?
>
Eric, my experience with other cameras with AF is limited to the D60, where the buttons worked in exactly the same way. I only started regularly using AF-ON with the D7000 and now would never go back to using the shutter release for AF. Like you, I use it to pre-focus on a point where the action is going to be. Also seems to work well for subjects moving towards me (not black bears), I just select a single focus point and hold AF-ON while following the subject and firing on continuous release.
Dawn.


  

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SaurianFire Registered since 11th Feb 2011Thu 01-Sep-11 12:20 PM
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#3. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 0


US
          

>AF-On
>Black bears are fast moving subjects. Their heads are
>constantly in motion making it hard to achieve focus. With
>AF-On I was able to pre-focus on an expected head position and
>adjust if needed. The D300 performed very well. The D7000
>does not appear to have any AF-On type setting - and I lost
>some images due to inability to focus or focus hunting at the
>time of key action. Particularly problematic was
>photographing a black bear shaking off water. The D7000
>performed about the same as the D300 without AF-On - okay but
>not truly satisfactory. My D300 was my go to camera for the
>trip because of this factor.

Eric, I want to thank you for your insights but this comment about AF-On has left me confused. It is my understanding that using the AF-ON button was the same as pressing the shutter button half way yet you seem to imply that it has better focus capabilities.

>"With
>AF-On I was able to pre-focus on an expected head position and
>adjust if needed."

and

>"and I lost
>some images due to inability to focus or focus hunting at the
>time of key action."

I can understand having confidence using AF-On as the photo is not taken until the shutter has been pressed, which yields less chance of accidental shutter release but focus adjustment and less focus hunting when using AF-On???


>AF Speed
>The D7000 seemed pretty good, but no better than the D300 with
>regard to AF speed. I used the 70-200 and 200-400 lenses
>interchangeably on both cameras. The D7000 was good with AF
>speed but overall the D300 seemed better.

This comment surprised me as I thought lenses with AF motors focused at the same speed without regard to camera body used.

Respectfully,
Frank

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ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Thu 01-Sep-11 01:12 PM
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#7. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 3


Atlanta, US
          

Frank

<It is my understanding that using the AF-ON button was the same as pressing the shutter button half way yet you seem to imply that it has better focus capabilities.>

I find the AF-On approach to be more reliable than shutter release in that you can more easily pre-focus and wait for the critical action. With the shutter release approach, you focus at the point of critical action. That takes a brief amount of time, but if the ideal focus is not achieved or if you need to recompose, the added time can be a problem. In this specific situation, I was pre-focusing on a portion of the bear or surrounding area where I anticipated the plane of the eye would be when it raised it's head and I had a catchlight. With AF-On it was easier to pre-focus and easier to re-focus during critical action.

As Dawn and Bill suggested, the AF-L button can be configured to handle focus. But using the shutter release for focus I did have some problem with re-focusing. With 11 points, the sensors were in the wrong location for critical action. With 39 points, I had to scroll across a number of sensors to the desired sensor. This is one situation where the AF-On or AF-L focus was extremely important. For most other wildlife photography, the shutter release button worked fine for me, but in this case the tight compositions and significant subject motion made the ability to separate AF with shutter release a critical feature.

I think the reality is I underestimated the difference between the D300 and D7000. The AF systems and related controls are different enough that the D7000 will take some practice to get top results. It's beyond just the setup - it is also the position of controls, AF sensors, and how they are used. That probably makes sense as I have 80,000 shutter releases with my D300 and just 2-3000 with the D7000.


Eric Bowles
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SaurianFire Registered since 11th Feb 2011Thu 01-Sep-11 02:32 PM
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#8. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 7


US
          

Eric

Thank you for your reply.

>With the shutter release approach, you focus
>at the point of critical action.

This is the point that I don't understand. I have to practice focusing with my D7000 with both the shutter release and the AE-L/AF-L set to AF-On.

Respectfully,
Frank

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ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Thu 01-Sep-11 02:50 PM
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#9. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 8


Atlanta, US
          

In practice, I found that you had to pre-focus using AF-On for the D300 or AF-L for the D7000. That way you are ready to take advantage of critical action, can create teh composition desired, and avoided the occasional focus hunting during critical action.

If I concurrently focused and shot using shutter release, I found a higher percentage of missed focus. It also limited composition to having a sensor on the eye. Furthermore, if the subject moved and you needed to take another shot, you had to focus and recompose again. Having to move to another AF sensor added to the delay and challenge with composition.

Using the release button for focus made it difficult to quickly recompose, decreased the percentage of captures with focus achieved, and limited the ability to compose during critical times.

With AF-On or AF-L, I anticipated the head position for the best composition, focused on that plane, and then prepared to quickly recompose with a second or third frame if needed.




Eric Bowles
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Ellis Feibush Silver Member Nikonian since 08th Sep 2009Sun 04-Sep-11 02:34 AM
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#36. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 7


Summit, US
          

Eric

The D7000 is like any new camera, ie you really have to work with it a while. The D300 is a super camera also. I shoot both the D300 and the D7000. The D300 is a very fine piece of photographic equipment. And so is the D7000. It's a matter of getting used to it. The D7000 does require a different learning curve which you simply have to get used to. I will also add this that the image quality on the D7000 is absolutely fantastic (when the camera is set up right). (Just my two cents worth)

efeibush

  

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gpoole Platinum Member Fellow Ribbon awarded for his excellent and frequent contributions and sharing his in-depth knowledge and experience with the community in the Nikonians spirit. Nikonian since 14th Feb 2004Thu 01-Sep-11 12:35 PM
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#4. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 0


Farmington Hills, US
          

I don't have a D7000, but I shoot a D90 and a D300 side by side. A couple of your observations about the D7000 also apply to the D90.

>
...
>AF-On
>Black bears are fast moving subjects. Their heads are
>constantly in motion making it hard to achieve focus. With
>AF-On I was able to pre-focus on an expected head position and
>adjust if needed. The D300 performed very well. The D7000
>does not appear to have any AF-On type setting - and I lost
>some images due to inability to focus or focus hunting at the
>time of key action.

The D90 allows programming the AE-L/AF-L button to the AF-ON. On the D90 it's "f4: Assign the AE-L/AF-L button". There should be the same ability on the D7000, it could be a different f# though. On the D90 AF-ON works just well as on the D300.

...
>
>Mode selector wheel
>On four occasions over the past 10 days I lost images due to
>inadvertent changes from Aperture Priority to Shutter or
>Manual Mode. This was a relatively big problem and while I am
>aware to watch for the issue, it does impact the level of
>trust - especially in situations where you cannot chimp.

Interesting, I have the same problem with my D90.

>...

Gary in SE Michigan, USA. Co-organizer of the Southern Michigan Chapter
Nikonians membership - My most important photographic investment, after the camera.
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km6xz Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, including Portraits and Urban Photography Nikonian since 22nd Jan 2009Thu 01-Sep-11 06:35 PM
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#11. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 0


St Petersburg, RU
          

It would be interesting to see what your opinion is after you get used to the layout and features. The AF-ON function certainly does work well, on the body or grip and is always used except when I use a tripod.

ISO can be adjusted a number of ways and a button does not have to be used, it is an option for those want to use it instead of the easy-ISO with the wheel alone.
The mode switch rotating is probably due to not being used to hand placement when picking it up. I don't ever remember hitting the mode selector inadvertently.
The AF system is different and behaves differently as well, one thing to get used to.
One thing that took a little getting used to was the AF mode button but once it is muscle memory it is probably faster than other methods of changing several parameters as once. The mode, FP number and mode can all be adjusted simultaneously without moving your eye from the VF. The button and wheel combination will probably be used on other models now because it adds options for more modes and more control, or modification of firmware to take advantage of new options. Fixed physical switches are not flexible in that regard.
For great handling get the optional grip if you do not have one. It makes a great combination.
Stan
St Petersburg Russia

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winclk Registered since 15th Jan 2007Fri 02-Sep-11 12:35 AM
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#15. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 11


philadelphia, US
          

Stan---what setting do i change to be able to set the iso without using a button and using the wheel alone?



Robin

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elec164 Silver Member Nikonian since 15th Jan 2009Fri 02-Sep-11 12:58 AM
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#16. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 15


US
          

I'm not Stan, but page 216 of the manual explains how changing Custom Setting D3 to 'Show ISO/Easy ISO' from its default of 'Show frame count'. This will allow you to change the ISO by rotating the sub-command dial when in P and S mode; and rotating the command dial when in A mode.

Pete

Pete

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Mike55Y Silver Member Nikonian since 02nd Jun 2006Fri 02-Sep-11 02:54 AM
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#17. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 16


Hillsborough, US
          

Unfortunately this disables the easy exposure compensation, which I find much more useful.

  

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Mike55Y Silver Member Nikonian since 02nd Jun 2006Thu 01-Sep-11 07:25 PM
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#12. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 0


Hillsborough, US
          

>I purchased a D7000 a couple of months ago intending it as a backup to my D300. Since then I have only used the D7000 and love it.
>
>ISO
> D7000 is better.
>
>AF-On
>
I use the available button for AF-On and it works exactly the same. I have had no problem adjusting to the location
>
>AF Speed
>
I cannot perceive any difference in AF speed. Acquiring focus is dominated by the particular lens and by one's technique. Any small difference in the camera is negligible.
>
>Focus points
>
For the fastest AF, the general recommendation is to use 9 focus points, or at most 21, so no difference.
>

>Mode selector wheel

The detent on the mode selector wheel is just right. Apparently they have improved this on the current production. I think it is definitely better than the D300 in this regard.
>
>
>Sharpness
>
>I agree that I see no difference.
>
>
>Controls and layout
>
I have no problems with the controls. I can find the ISO button by feel after a little experience. I also set the controls so that a press holds and I don't need to continue to hold the button to make the adjustments.
>
Overall I love the D7000, and I believe the only advantage the D300 has is the higher frame rate and the wider bracketing. These do not effect my personal style of shooting. I also very much like the smaller size and lighter weight.
>
>

  

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km6xz Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, including Portraits and Urban Photography Nikonian since 22nd Jan 2009Fri 02-Sep-11 07:28 AM
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#18. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 12


St Petersburg, RU
          


>
>>Mode selector wheel
>
>The detent on the mode selector wheel is just right.
>Apparently they have improved this on the current production.
>I think it is definitely better than the D300 in this regard.

Maybe they did change the mode switch as you suggest because I could not figure out why people were complaining about it not having a detent. Mine, purchased 2 months ago feels secure and not once has it ended up in the wrong mode by accident.

I use AF-on and prefer it that way but many of my shots are in portrait mode where the grip had the button in exactly the right spot.

The buffer size advantage is only when comparing apples and oranges. The often mentioned speed of the D300 is conditional on using lower bit depth, 12 instead of 14. In full bit depth which most people would prefer for anything other than highest speed action,the D7000 is 2.5 faster in frame rate than the D300. Comparing in JPG, the D7000 buffer is never filled where as it is possible to fill it on the D300. Both are a little weak in buffer size for 14 bit but the actual size in the D7000 is larger.

Stan
St Petersburg Russia

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Fri 02-Sep-11 11:29 AM
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#19. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 18


Atlanta, US
          

On the mode wheel, I have had it change in the field five or six times in the last three weeks using a brand new D7000. With two D70's, a D200, and two D300's over nearly 100,000 images I never had the selector wheel change inadvertently. While I can learn to watch this more closely, controls randomly changing is a significant negative. I prefer the stiff feel and the button allowing a change on the D300.

I find the frame rate for 14 bit RAW files is a nice benefit of the D7000. The slow frame rate of 14 bit images on the D300 has always bothered me a bit and certainly has an adverse impact on wildlife photography.

Nest time I am on a similar outing I'll use the grip. The position of the AF control is a little better with the grip.

Eric Bowles
Nikonians Team
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Len Shepherd Gold Member Nikonian since 09th Mar 2003Fri 02-Sep-11 12:53 PM
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#20. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 19


Yorkshire, GB
          

>On the mode wheel, I have had it change in the field five or six times in the last three weeks using a brand new D7000.
On the D7000 there is a lock for the lower dial for release settings like single shot, mirror up etc - making it difficult to accidentally change these settings.
There is no lock for the upper mode wheel and not the best of detent settings between aperture priority, manual, U1 etc. I too find this upper wheel is relatively easily accidentally changed.

Photography is a bit like archery. A technically better camera, lens or arrow may not hit the target as often as it could if the photographer or archer does not practice enough.

Len Shepherd

  

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kuzzy Silver Member Nikonian since 12th Dec 2005Fri 02-Sep-11 03:10 PM
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#21. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 20
Fri 02-Sep-11 03:25 PM by kuzzy

Milford, US
          

I have never had this problem with my D7000. It must either be a manufacturing tolerance issue or just generally the way we hold/handle the camera. I have had my D7k since last november.

Eric, I am a little confused about your AF-On vs. Shutter release button and pre-focus. I do this all the time (prefocus to an area) using the shutter release when shooting sports and cannot understand what you are referring to as an advantage. Do you (pre)focus and recompose using AF-S? That is the only way your comments seem to make sense to me, am I missing something? Is it just personal preference to us the AF-On approach. I have tried it and just do not see or understand why it is preferred or what distinct advantage it provides in most shooting situations. I also shoot almost exclusively in AF-C with my D7k unless I am using a tripod, maybe this has something to do with it.

Marc
There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.-Ansel Adams

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Len Shepherd Gold Member Nikonian since 09th Mar 2003Fri 02-Sep-11 04:12 PM
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#22. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 21


Yorkshire, GB
          

> I am a little confused about your AF-On vs. Shutter
>release button
Both do the same function, except AF-on does not start VR running, whereas shutter button first pressure does.
Which to use and when is personal choice.
Eric's issue seems to be in AF-A if the D7000 detects subject movement it uses shutter priority release, but if the subject stops moving the camera reverts to focus priority with no exposure if AF confirmation is not on - unless menu a2 has been changed.
Eric's problem seems to be when the bears stopped moving to shake off water the camera reverted to focus priority, the AF could not detect the water drops, and the camera "effectively locked up" for shutter release until shaking the water was over.
I can understand Eric wanted to capture the water, and was not happy when the shutter would not release.

Photography is a bit like archery. A technically better camera, lens or arrow may not hit the target as often as it could if the photographer or archer does not practice enough.

Len Shepherd

  

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ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Fri 02-Sep-11 05:11 PM
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#24. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 22


Atlanta, US
          

Len is exactly right. What I found is there are some situations where the AF-On button is a much better way to activate AF. Wildlife photography where you have head movement is one of those cases. The AF-On decreases the opportunity for misfocus at the moment of shutter release. It also makes it easier to focus and compose.

I photograph a lot of wildlife, but this is the first situation that "required" the use of the AF-On function. The only real alternative was manual focus.


Eric Bowles
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kuzzy Silver Member Nikonian since 12th Dec 2005Fri 02-Sep-11 06:00 PM
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#26. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 24
Fri 02-Sep-11 06:09 PM by kuzzy

Milford, US
          

Eric, still do not understand the "required" part but that's OK. I do not expect you to explain it sufficiently (not that you couldn't but if I do not get it by now you would probably have to write a book for me to get it and that is not necessary, I will figure it out eventually) or for us to debate it here in order for me to understand the "requirement".

Just to help with my understanding though I have one last question, would using AF-C mode, locking in on the bears head/eye with a focus point and then pulling the trigger when the bear gets into the desired position not do what you want or do you just like your results better using the other method? I understand about the 11/39 points and maybe not having one exactly where you need it for compositional purposes and as such you may want to focus and recompose but that is a somewhat separate issue. Thanks

Edit- I just read you further comments on the bears in the other post on focus and have a much better understanding of what happened to you.

Marc
There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.-Ansel Adams

http://500px.com/WhatISaw
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ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Fri 02-Sep-11 06:47 PM
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#27. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 26


Atlanta, US
          

Marc

I was actually surprised by the difference between using the shutter release to activate AF and using the AF-On approach.

To clarify, with the shutter release I had to prepare for critical movement, and then at the time of that movement get the AF sensor on the eye and compose the image. The problems I encountered were: the AF sensor had some hesitation on some percentage of images, the center AF point is fast and reliable, but it led to bulls-eye compositions, and moving from one AF sensor to another was challenging in a short period of time.

By using AF-On, I was able to pre-focus and compose. While not perfect, this meant I could worry about the shutter release, and composition adjustments at critical action. And refocus was relatively easy.

My keeper rate more than doubled with AF-On, and my compositions required less cropping.

Eric Bowles
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kuzzy Silver Member Nikonian since 12th Dec 2005Fri 02-Sep-11 06:50 PM
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#28. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 27


Milford, US
          

Thanks Eric. Maybe I will revisit the AF-On approach.

Marc
There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.-Ansel Adams

http://500px.com/WhatISaw
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Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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jules Basic MemberMon 03-Oct-11 04:22 PM
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#47. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 27


GB
          

>Marc
>
>I was actually surprised by the difference between using the
>shutter release to activate AF and using the AF-On approach.
>
>To clarify, with the shutter release I had to prepare for
>critical movement, and then at the time of that movement get
>the AF sensor on the eye and compose the image. The problems
>I encountered were: the AF sensor had some hesitation on some
>percentage of images, the center AF point is fast and
>reliable, but it led to bulls-eye compositions, and moving
>from one AF sensor to another was challenging in a short
>period of time.
>
>By using AF-On, I was able to pre-focus and compose. While
>not perfect, this meant I could worry about the shutter
>release, and composition adjustments at critical action. And
>refocus was relatively easy.
>
>My keeper rate more than doubled with AF-On, and my
>compositions required less cropping.
>
>Eric Bowles
>Nikonians Team
>My Gallery
>Workshops
>
>Nikonians membership — my most important photographic
>investment, after the camera

Eric are you a right eye shooter or a southpaw like me? I'm only asking as I've tried to get used the the AF/ON Switcharound and can't, I've switched back to normal but I like the independant control of AF/AE/VR That is possible with that combination, I just keep poking myself in the eye looking for the AF button
Cheers jules...
tri-elmar-fudd
www.exaggeratedperspectives.co.uk

  

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ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Mon 03-Oct-11 08:47 PM
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#48. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 47


Atlanta, US
          

Jules

I'm a right eyed shooter. I have experimented with my left eye in order to use my shoulder for support, but ran into the same issue of my nose getting in the way.

I'm getting used to the back button focus, but the conventional configuration is a little easier. I actually switched it twice - and am using the back button approach now.

The grip does seem to have a little better configuration.


Eric Bowles
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jules Basic MemberTue 04-Oct-11 07:55 PM
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#50. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 48


GB
          

>Jules
>
>I'm a right eyed shooter. I have experimented with my left
>eye in order to use my shoulder for support, but ran into the
>same issue of my nose getting in the way.
>
>I'm getting used to the back button focus, but the
>conventional configuration is a little easier. I actually
>switched it twice - and am using the back button approach
>now.
>
>The grip does seem to have a little better configuration.
>
>
>Eric Bowles
>Nikonians Team
>My Gallery
>Workshops
>
>Nikonians membership — my most important photographic
>investment, after the camera
Thanks Eric!


Cheers jules...
tri-elmar-fudd
www.exaggeratedperspectives.co.uk

  

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pdekman Gold Member Winner in The Nikonians 10th Anniversary Photo Contest Awarded as a regular contributor who offers in-depth knowledge to members who are interested in building efficient work flows. Nikonian since 17th Nov 2005Mon 03-Oct-11 11:51 PM
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#49. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 47


Swisher, US
          

I'm left eye dominant and use AF-On exclusively. I learned years ago on my D200 so the D7000 was a bit of a change as the button is further inward. As with anything, muscle memory takes over and now it's automatic. No way could I go back to shutter-initiated focusing.

Paul
My Nikonians Gallery

  

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jules Basic MemberTue 04-Oct-11 07:57 PM
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#51. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 49


GB
          

>I'm left eye dominant and use AF-On exclusively. I learned
>years ago on my D200 so the D7000 was a bit of a change as the
>button is further inward. As with anything, muscle memory
>takes over and now it's automatic. No way could I go back to
>shutter-initiated focusing.
>

So you got there in the end, encouraging! I'l give it another go at some point, Having had just about all the So called "Pro" series above the 7000 I didn't realise just how much smaller "A little bit" can be...

Cheers jules...
tri-elmar-fudd
www.exaggeratedperspectives.co.uk

  

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Len Shepherd Gold Member Nikonian since 09th Mar 2003Fri 02-Sep-11 08:13 PM
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#29. "RE: One of the good things about Nikonians"
In response to Reply # 24


Yorkshire, GB
          

>What I found is there are some situations where the AF-On button is a much better way to activate AF.
One of the good things about Nikonians is the number of advanced workers who provide feedback having shot something unusual.
Not many have seen wild bears shaking water from their fur, or got close enough to bears to photograph them from a tripod.
Reading what worked for them and particularly why is always useful next time I encounter something similar.

Photography is a bit like archery. A technically better camera, lens or arrow may not hit the target as often as it could if the photographer or archer does not practice enough.

Len Shepherd

  

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kuzzy Silver Member Nikonian since 12th Dec 2005Fri 02-Sep-11 05:42 PM
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#25. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 22


Milford, US
          

Thanks Len, Since I have never used AF-A, and do not plan to at this time, I never looked at how it worked. In fact I usually forget it even exists. I rarely use VR as well, my lens with VR is almost always in the off mode, so that is not an issue for me so I guess it just isn't a need of mine therefore I do not understand its benefits fully. I do now understand Eric's problem now and why the shutter might not release.

Marc
There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.-Ansel Adams

http://500px.com/WhatISaw
http://kuzzy.smugmug.com

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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SaurianFire Registered since 11th Feb 2011Sat 03-Sep-11 08:23 AM
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#30. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 22


US
          

>> I am a little confused about your AF-On vs. Shutter
>>release button
>Both do the same function, except AF-on does not start VR
>running, whereas shutter button first pressure does.
>Which to use and when is personal choice.
>Eric's issue seems to be in AF-A if the D7000 detects subject
>movement it uses shutter priority release, but if the subject
>stops moving the camera reverts to focus priority with no
>exposure if AF confirmation is not on - unless menu a2 has
>been changed.
>Eric's problem seems to be when the bears stopped moving to
>shake off water the camera reverted to focus priority, the AF
>could not detect the water drops, and the camera
>"effectively locked up" for shutter release until
>shaking the water was over.
>I can understand Eric wanted to capture the water, and was not
>happy when the shutter would not release.
>

OK, Thanks Len. This makes perfect sense to me though I didn't see where Eric said AF-A was set. So AF-A mode is the problem and
the AE-L/AF-L button set for focus on the D7k does work the same as the shutter release button except for turning on VR. I understand too its easier to focus and re-compose using the AE-L/AF-L button instead of the shutter button.

According to Thom Hogan's D7000 guide when AF-A is set the camera stays in focus priority even when tracking motion. Apparently he has encountered the same type of situation as Eric.

As for activating lens VR I haven't found in the Nikon D7000 users guide that only the shutter button activates VR like the D300S users guide does on page 75. Not arguing just mentioning this but I will try it out with my new 70-300VR.

Respectfully,
Frank

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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Ellis Feibush Silver Member Nikonian since 08th Sep 2009Sun 04-Sep-11 02:53 AM
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#37. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 30


Summit, US
          

Use of the shutter button is the only way to activate the VR feature which is inherant on many of the newer Nikon lenses. After you hit the AF-on button you must touch the shutter button to activate VR. I learned this the hard way and received this advice from both Nikon techs and Nikonian Academy instructor Mike Hagan.

efeibush

  

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Vlad_IT Silver Member Nikonian since 21st Sep 2011Fri 23-Sep-11 09:53 PM
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#42. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 30
Sat 24-Sep-11 12:51 AM by Vlad_IT

US
          

>
>As for activating lens VR I haven't found in the Nikon D7000
>users guide that only the shutter button activates VR like the
>D300S users guide does on page 75. Not arguing just mentioning
>this but I will try it out with my new 70-300VR.
>
>

the same thing with D7000. It's on page 26 of User Manual

  

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SaurianFire Registered since 11th Feb 2011Sat 24-Sep-11 01:08 PM
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#43. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 42


US
          

Here is what the D300S manual clearly states on page 75:

"The AF-ON Button

For purposes of focusing the camera, pressing the AF-ON button has the same effect as pressing the shutter-release button halfway; note, however, that vibration reduction can only be engaged by pressing the shutter-release button halfway."

On page of 232 of the D7000 manual where the option to use the AE-L/AF-L button as AF-ON doesn't mention this limitation and neither does page 26.

Not activating VR with AF-ON button plainly seems counter-intuitive after reading about VR "reducing the effects of camera shake on the image in the viewfinder and simplifying the process of framing the subject and focusing in both autofocus and manual focus modes."

Respectfully,
Frank

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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briantilley Moderator Deep knowledge of bodies and lens; high level photography skills Nikonian since 26th Jan 2003Sat 24-Sep-11 02:22 PM
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#44. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 43


Paignton, GB
          

It's true that the D7000 manual doesn't have the same explicit statement as the D300s manual - this is probably because the D300s has a dedicated AF-ON button and it's in that part of the manual where the warning is given.

But... page 235 in the D7000 manual does contain a note about VR Lenses, which says "VR can not be initiated by pressing the AE-L/AF-L button". Admittedly this is "hidden" in the MB-D11 controls section, but it would be reasonable to assume it also applies to the camera's own button. And page 26 does seem pretty clear to me - "Vibration reduction is activated when the shutter-release button is pressed halfway..." - no mention of the AE-L/AF-L button.

Brian
Welsh Nikonian

  

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SaurianFire Registered since 11th Feb 2011Sun 25-Sep-11 03:04 AM
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#45. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 44
Sun 25-Sep-11 03:07 AM by SaurianFire

US
          

Foolish me I only referenced the pages listed for AE-L/AF-L button not the Assign MB-D11 AE-L/AF-L button. But knowing the manual is a bit sloppy helps too. Thanks

Respectfully,
Frank

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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dm1dave Administrator Awarded for high level knowledge and skills in various areas, most notably in Wildlife and Landscape Writer Ribbon awarded for his excellent article contributions to the Nikonians community Nikonian since 12th Sep 2006Sun 25-Sep-11 03:40 AM
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#46. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 45


Lowden, US
          

The manuals are not exactly intuitive.

This is why there are so many aftermarket how-to books for all of these cameras.

Dave Summers
Lowden, Iowa
Nikonians Photo Contest Director

Nikonians membership -
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sfbillm Silver Member Nikonian since 15th Jun 2004Fri 16-Sep-11 11:37 PM
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#40. "RE: So does AF-ON mean no VR?"
In response to Reply # 22


Santa Fe, US
          

>Both do the same function, except AF-on does not start VR
>running, whereas shutter button first pressure does.


Is there any way to activate VR when using AF-ON? Or are they mutually exclusive?

Since I like to shoot at the longer end of my zooms, and since I often travel with non-photographers (so no time to excavate and set up a tripod), I find VR very useful.

SantaFeBill

  

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dm1dave Administrator Awarded for high level knowledge and skills in various areas, most notably in Wildlife and Landscape Writer Ribbon awarded for his excellent article contributions to the Nikonians community Nikonian since 12th Sep 2006Sat 17-Sep-11 12:52 AM
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#41. "RE: So does AF-ON mean no VR?"
In response to Reply # 40


Lowden, US
          

Hi Bill,

VR is always activated by half pressing the shutter button. So VR can always be used no matter how you set up your focus.

When you use the AF-ON (AE-L/AF-L button on D7000) focus and VR activation are separated with the back button starting focus and the shutter button starting VR.

Dave Summers
Lowden, Iowa
Nikonians Photo Contest Director

Nikonians membership -
"My most important photographic investment, after the camera"

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Jeeves Silver Member Charter MemberSat 03-Sep-11 03:03 PM
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#31. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 19


Bangalore, IN
          

I have a serious problem with the mode selector switch....I have to be constantly aware of it as I normally shoot Aperture priority and I find it changes inadvertently to S or M. S may not be such a problem sometimes but M could and has given me wrong exposures.

I have even contemplated taping the darn thing!

  

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SaurianFire Registered since 11th Feb 2011Sat 03-Sep-11 04:10 PM
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#32. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 31


US
          

>I have a serious problem with the mode selector switch....


Since your switch is so loose have you contacted Nikon to find out if they can help with advice on how to tighten it up or repair/replace the defective mode dial??? It may be a very simple fix like a flat spring to keep tension on the dial.

The excessive looseness of the mode dial may happen to all of us after a fair amount of use. ???

Respectfully,
Frank

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Jeeves Silver Member Charter MemberSat 03-Sep-11 08:12 PM
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#33. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 32


Bangalore, IN
          

Hello Frank,

Maybe you are right, but even on this forum a lot has been said about this problem.

I think it is an inherent fault.

Jeeves

  

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SaurianFire Registered since 11th Feb 2011Sat 03-Sep-11 10:56 PM
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#35. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 33


US
          

>>I think it is an inherent fault.


Hey Jeeves

Not eneryone has this problem to the extent you do. If it was my camera I would e-mail Nikon support. That's the only way they will become aware of the problem and it is a problem. It would only take a few minutes like reading an extra thread

Nikon didn't put a lock on the mode dial but I'm sure they didn't intend for it to be moved so easily. That would irritate anyone.

Respectfully,
Frank

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Jeeves Silver Member Charter MemberSun 04-Sep-11 05:20 AM
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#38. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 35


Bangalore, IN
          

Frank thanks,

You suggestion appreciated. Will inform Nikon.

Best

Jeevan

  

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Robman3 Registered since 12th Apr 2010Sat 03-Sep-11 09:31 PM
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#34. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 31
Sat 03-Sep-11 11:35 PM by Robman3

West of Santa Monica, US
          

I've checked mine and it's not easy to displace, second one sold here by the dealer last October.

When I've encountered unexpected settings, invariably these have been pilot error.

Early on, I thought there was a post where one user bought a diameter of shrink tube, (heat shrink) and used a hair dryer (caution not to melt) to reduce it onto the knurled surface, the bottom edge contacts the top of the locked wheel, providing enough contact friction so as not to disallow use, but still be an effective drag on motion.

I just took another look, the knurl is tapered, it's likely the friction is actually on the white position marker, which has a small gap. to that taper.

HTH's

Rob

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yelcab Registered since 30th Nov 2006Fri 02-Sep-11 04:46 PM
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#23. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 18


San carlos, US
          

>
>>
>>>>
>Comparing in JPG, the D7000 buffer is never filled where
>as it is possible to fill it on the D300. Both are a little
>weak in buffer size for 14 bit but the actual size in the
>D7000 is larger.
>
>

I and a friend who has the D7K manage to fill the buffer with JPEG everytime we use it. It must be the cheapy sd cards we use but the statement above needs qualifications.

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km6xz Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, including Portraits and Urban Photography Nikonian since 22nd Jan 2009Sun 04-Sep-11 10:26 AM
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#39. "RE: Challenges with D7000 for wildlife"
In response to Reply # 23


St Petersburg, RU
          

The speed of transfer to SD cards is not related to buffer size. JPGs should allow continuous shooting before exceeding the buffer throughput capacity. If you have slow cards that do not need the minimum requirements for the camera, that is not a buffer or Nikon design problem.
Why does the statement need qualifications?
Stan
St Petersburg Russia

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