On my new d700 focusing beep is barely audible even if d1 option is set to high. I compared sound to my three year old d50 and found that d50 sounded like a holler contest champion compared to my d700. Today I was making some trial shots at ocean beach, surf (very weak) was muffling the beeps and only the green point in viewfinder helped to make sure that camera caught focus. Of course, people hearing vary and my sole reference point is d50 beeper so my request is the following: Owners of d50 and/or d70(s) please compare beep sound to d700 and share your volume estimates.
The beep made by the D700 set on High volume is softer than the D70s.
Once you've focused, why worry about whether or not you can hear the beep? It's not like both the focus dot plus the beep are required to confirm actual focus. On the other hand, you didn't state whether or not you have a short range vision problem which prevents you from clearly seeing the focus dot (which makes the beep quite handy of course). If this last bit is part of the problem, I can understand why you're concerned about low volume. I wonder if Nikon service has an in-house volume tweak to aid photographers with short range vision/viewfinder issues?
For what it's worth (and recognizing that your technique is legitimately different from the techniques used by others), I use the focus dot only as an aid for manual work. When using autofocus, I prefer to use the visual clarity of the focus lock achieved under the active focus indicator seen in the viewfinder - especially useful when auto-tracking. I've never used the beep because an audible confirmation of a visual function has always seemed unreliable to me.
I tried the beep during a shooting session several years ago. What I found was that extra (fractions of a second worth of) time was needed to achieve focus, beep, then react and shoot. Fractionally less time was needed to achieve visual focus in the viewfinder and fully press the shutter. I found myself missing some shots altogether because I was waiting to react to the beep. I guess it all depends on what you're shooting.
Anyway, my opinion is that the current, obviously lower volume level isn't a bug so much as a feature that's been pushed into the back seat possibly because very few advanced DLSR shooters bother with it. I'm guessing.
I wish a few more people would chime in here with their indications of whether or not they use the beep. Inquiring minds would like to know.
>I can perfectly see the focus dot but visual focus control >means distraction from scene control, big inconvenience for >me. >
even though i'm a newbie to the D700, i find the comment from Sam above to be exactly what i found to be the case - that is, the green dot is way at the bottom left and it is very distracting for me to look down there, away from the subject that i'm attempting to capture at the exact right moment. maybe if the focus point (which turns red) itself can change its own color to green when focus is locked, that would work since it's right there in the center of the viewfinder, plus it blinks red anyhow, so blinking green isn't any more or less distracting than blinking green.
additionally, back to the original poster's point of the beep being too soft - funny, i found it to be way too soft as well, even though i'm new to the D700.
After years of shooting shotguns, walking behind loud lawnmowers, and standing too close to fiddle players in bands, I have to ask, "What beep?" Haven't heard any beep on my D50, D200 or D700. Moral: Wear hearing protectors while you're young if you want an audible focus indicator when you're a geezer.
". . . contrary to what we've always been led to believe, the universe is not basically euclidean." - Benoit Mandelbrot
btw, does anyone know what the focusing point(s) turning red means?
initially, i had mistakenly thought that by blinking red, it means that that focusing point has locked in the proper focus. i'm pretty sure i'm incorrect since the green dot at the bottom left is what indicates "focus lock".
>btw, does anyone know what the focusing point(s) turning red >means?
So you're shooting on a tripod in Live View/contrast-detect focus mode? If so, the answer is in your manual (pg. 97 in the U.S., UK and Canadian English prints): "If the camera is able to focus using contrast-detect autofocus, the focus point will be displayed in green; if the camera is unable to focus, the focus point will blink red."
In non-Live View use (phase-detect focus mode), your manual (pg. 288 in the U.S., UK and Canadian English prints) points to the three AF Point Illumination settings (A6 in the Custom Settings): "Auto" (the default setting) highlights the selected focus point in red in order to help establish contrast with the background; "On" will turn on whatever focus point is selected regardless of background; "Off" is obvious - no focus point illumination of any kind.
>The beep in my D700 is totally inaudible. Want to trade? I >plan to send the camera in for repair in it's 10th month in >case some else is found. So, if you have beep, feel lucky. >(unless Lucky objects)