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New Focus Problem on D3

DVDMike

Metro Atlanta, US
2225 posts

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DVDMike Registered since 25th Mar 2003
Tue 22-Jan-08 12:19 PM


Last week, I shot about 1500 shots at basketball games with the 85 f1.8. Focus was pretty good and definitely plenty fast for action sports.

Now yesterday, I bring my D3/85 f/1.8 to the bowling alley with some friends and have an entirely different experience. I was using in S focus mode, not "C" like basketball. And the focus mode was set to "focus" (not release). Lighting was good enough to shoot at ISO 1250. But if there was the slightest movement in the subject, the D3 would not fire when in AF mode. It would take 1 to 3 seconds to lock focus, if ever. My D100's focus much faster than this. And this experience is much different than I had with the D3 just last week with the same lens. So what is different this time?

I changed the focus mode to "C" and still experienced the same issue. I went from 14 bit to 12 bit NEFs and this did not help. I made sure that the Active D lighting was off.

I also shot some with manual focus mode and could fire as fast I could pull the trigger. Setting the focus mode to "release" allowed me to shoot at will but without proper focus. Shooting static subjects AF worked well, but still not nearly as fast as what I had experienced before.

Shooting just for fun and practice, I did not have another lens with me at the bowling alley or I would have tried one to see if it was lens specific. The only thing that I can think of that might have caused this problem is that the battery that I was using had fired over 2000 shots. But it still read as 50% full. With the D2x and D2h, I never noticed battery drain decreasing AF performance. As long as there was a charge, I got consistent performance with the D2. Could it be the battery with the D3? Could I have inadvertently changed some menu setting? Any ideas?

http://www.BigDigital.us

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