Friday, June 6, 2008

G9: Can’t Focus

Sometimes the G9 can’t focus. When the G9 has acquired focus, it beeps twice (very quickly) and the AF frame on the LCD turns green. If the G9 is confused about the focus, it only beeps once and the AF frame turns yellow. That (yellow frame) was the case for this uncropped image. For this composition – as attractive as it is – the small AF frame did not include any details and the G9 could not focus. I pressed the shutter button anyway and got an out-of-focus picture.

Switching to manual focus immediately after the shot, I found that the G9 decided to focus at infinity instead of the true distance of about nine feet. Had I selected the nine large frame AiAF focus method, the G9 would have focused correctly because some of the frames would have included the plaques (tested and proven).

As noted previously, I almost always use the small Flexizone frame for focusing. I even leave the frame centered; that is, I focus, recompose and shoot. But sometimes, especially when in a hurry, this is not the best method and it definitely is not the best method without recomposing.

The G9 focuses by means of contrast detection and tends to select the closest object. When using the small AF frame to focus, make certain that the focus frame includes an edge, some sort of pattern, different colors, different lighting, etc. In fact, when using the large frame or the multiple AiAF frames, keep in mind that the focus point will be selected on the basis of proximity and contrast.

And watch for that frame to turn green!


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