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What is the best BIF settings on the D700?

glxman

South Australia, AU
6750 posts

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glxman Moderator Awarded for his high level skills, specially in Wildlife & Landscape Photography Nikonian since 04th Oct 2008
Wed 25-Nov-09 03:29 AM

I'm new to auto focus and digital,

I'm gradually getting up to pace with a lot of settings but still unsure about BIF focus settings,

If budget stays healthy around Xmas, I may get a longer lens,

What settings do you recommend?

Regards,
Gary

I used to have a photographic memory but never got it developed

TiggerGTO

Apex, US
2258 posts

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#1. "RE: What is the best BIF settings on the D700?" | In response to Reply # 0

TiggerGTO Gold Member Nikonian since 22nd Feb 2006
Wed 25-Nov-09 11:57 AM

By BIF, I assume you mean Birds In Flight. You will definitely want to use AF-C since your subject will be moving. If you are trying to pick a single bird out of a flock or there is a busy background, I would try either the 9 or 21 point dynamic area. If you are shooting a single bird against the sky, like a circling hawk, you might try 51 point dynamic area since it will always pick the bird as the subject against the solid background. You could try auto-area AF for both these cases, but if the scene is busy, it doesn't always pick what you want as the subject to focus on.

One setting I like to use with AF-C is to set a5 - AF Activation to AF-On only. This decouples the shutter button from focus activation. Using this mode, you can have the best of both AF-C and AF-S-like operation. To focus, lock and recompose you use the AF-On button to focus, release it, recompose and shoot. To get AF-C operation, you simply press and hold the AF-On button. Some people have tried it and couldn't get used to it. Most people who have tried it really seem to like it once they get used to it. Search for AF-On to find old threads about this.

Danny
A Nikonian in North Carolina

glxman

South Australia, AU
6750 posts

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#2. "RE: What is the best BIF settings on the D700?" | In response to Reply # 0

glxman Moderator Awarded for his high level skills, specially in Wildlife & Landscape Photography Nikonian since 04th Oct 2008
Wed 25-Nov-09 08:13 PM

Much appreciated Danny,

Just what I was looking for, good explanation,

Being new to auto focus and the many options in custom settings, it is taking me a long time to work it out,

Regards,
Gary

I used to have a photographic memory but never got it developed

briantilley

Paignton, UK
30235 posts

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#3. "RE: What is the best BIF settings on the D700?" | In response to Reply # 0

briantilley Gold Member Deep knowledge of bodies and lens; high level photography skills Donor Ribbon awarded for his support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Nikonian since 26th Jan 2003
Wed 25-Nov-09 08:25 PM

Here is a discussion on that topic from a few months ago

Brian
Welsh Nikonian

glxman

South Australia, AU
6750 posts

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#4. "RE: What is the best BIF settings on the D700?" | In response to Reply # 0

glxman Moderator Awarded for his high level skills, specially in Wildlife & Landscape Photography Nikonian since 04th Oct 2008
Thu 26-Nov-09 05:26 AM

Tks Brian,

I tried a few search strings but with no success, I should have went for full words rather than abbreviations,

Looks like everybody is pretty much using the same settings, except for the occasional AF C setting

The feedback here has given me a handle on what the settings mean, just wish they had a glossary in the manual for us old guys from the photographic dinosaur age,

Regards,
Gary

I used to have a photographic memory but never got it developed

G