I've been working thru the menu on my D800E getting the camera ready for a photo trip into the mountains this weekend. I've never used Focus Point Wrap Around before but does anyone know if there are any advantages/disadvantages to using this option for landscapes or for any other type of subjects for that matter?
I find it's useful but it is truly a personal preference. Focus Wrap Around simply means that when you scroll the focus point to the edge of the viewfinder, you can keep scrolling the same direction and it will appear on the opposite side. This means it goes from far right to far left or from top to bottom. I find that useful and intentionally move the cursor with this feature rather than scrolling manually he opposite direction.
The disadvantage is that you can quickly move the cursor far from the intended position and it could cause you to miss shots rather than helping.
Based on the description I thought that's all it meant.. but from what I've seen...looks like a good option for me. Getting the focus point to the far left with one push of the button instead of having to scroll all the way across the screen would have helped several times on wildlife shoots... so wrap around is going to be active from now on.
Eric, could you elaborate that a bit further? When you're using AF-ON to focus, why would you use focus points other than the central one as main focus point? Most pro's use AF-ON because it is quick, and because it offers other advantages with AF-C, why/when would they take the time to switch to another focus point? Marc
There's usually a good reason if you think about it...
One situation where I've used AF-ON with one of the non-central AF points is airshows. I know I want to leave more space in the frame ahead of the aircraft, as that looks more aesthetically pleasing. So if the plane is doing a left-to-right pass, I will select an AF point to the left of centre and track it with that.
One of the things I shoot is "headshots" for use in the programmes for theatrical productions. These don't need to be "creative" portraits - it's like a production line with everyone in the same pose and with identical lighting. The shot is head-and-shoulders, with the head centred in the frameand the camera is in "portrait" orientation.
For these sessions, I select an AF point that's just up and right from the centre; I find this will be over the nearer eye when the head is centred, which is where I want critical focus to be.
This is a case where knowing what kind of AF sensors you have and the layout can be important. The Center AF sensor is the fastest - and I'll use it in tough situations. But the surrounding sensors - and the center horizontal row - are cross sensors and are also good. Darrel Young made a nice post of the sensor layout.
I find that if I can compose and frame with the AF sensor in the proper location, I don't have to recompose during critical action. For example, photographing small birds. It seems the the bird is always moving, and when it turns the right direction and there is a catchlight, I need to focus and fire the shutter. There is no time to recompose. I can pretty well anticipate the likely composition, put an AF point on the neck or near the eye, and be ready for the critical moment.
This has been even more important with the D800E than earlier cameras. There is such great resolution that I find I notice a slightly missed focus or depth of field.
Thanks Eric, I used that technique shooting running/playing horses or a flock of geese with my D300's cross sensors, but not yet with the D800E. Singing birds are a "bit" smaller, move a dimension extra, some move erratic, so I can imagine it is very challenging. Shooting vultures in the Pyrenees was another experience I found already pretty difficult, they were flying from above me into a canyon below me. Not really my kind of stuff (the shooting, the diving into the canyon would be terrifying). Nevertheless I enjoyed it. Tempting, maybe I have to give it a serious try. I admire those who have the skill and especially the patience. It's interesting to read about how bird and sports shooters use the same camera as landscape, art and architecture shooters. Quite a difference.