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D200 focus areas - viewfinder


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Yzerguy Registered since 06th Jan 2007
Tue 09-Jan-07 05:01 AM

Hi all,

I'm not quite 2 weeks past buying my D200 - as I've discovered in these forums I'm one of many who started with the D80 then resold it for the D200. I'm closer to beginner than pro, but that's a long story. When I made the switch I was aware that the D200 would require more thinking/input on my part above and beyond a creative eye for light and opportunities, I look forward to learning via experimenting and research.

I've been trying to research one arguably unimportant detail which is how I found Nikonians, but I'm wondering about potential differences between the D80 and D200 AF, at least where the viewfinder is concerned.

With a little time spent with the D80, I expected a few things to be very similar to the D200, namely AF as both share the same Multi-Cam 1000 AF module. I hadn't noticed this when trying out the D200 in the store, but the D200 only ever highlights (in red) 1 of the 11 focus areas in the viewfinder when it locks on to indicate which area is being used (ie: is in the focus area). This is slightly different than the D80, which would indicate anywhere from 1-8 (in my experience) of the focus areas in the viewfinder (blinks red) indicating which focus areas that were in the range of proper focus.

I have read the D200 tutorial on the Multi-Cam 1000 AF, so I'm going to continue to learn/experiment with that and my manual as a guide and move forward. I'm also aware that the D80 must be at least a little different as it has AF-A mode (not found on the D200) in addition to AF-S and AF-C. Also, when shooting on the D80 and manually selecting the AF area with the 4-way thumb selector on the back, I can't honestly remember if only that AF area remained highlighted in the viewfinder after it locked focus. I used mostly P mode, although for the first week I left it in full auto as well. With the D200 I've shot in AF-S and AF-C both with focus priority on and mostly in program mode.

That all said, I've read elsewhere on the web (vaguely) that the D200 will only indicate (or highlight in red) one AF area in the viewfinder (and again on playback if you have that function set to display AF areas) despite the fact it may be using more than one.

I've searched with as many combinations of keywords as I can think of (D200 and D80 forums) and wasn't able to find any mention of the differences between the Multi-Cam 1000 AF between the two cameras regarding how they display the focus areas in the viewfinder. Just wondering if this has been brought up at some other time, and if not, why the difference between the two?

Cheers, Sean

Slowly easing my way into this... need a money tree and a time machine