Anyone tried [Animal Detect] AF on the G9 yet?

Fuzzdog

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I'm watching this with interest, as probably 90% of my shooting is with dogs and cats. A G9 is tempting enough as it is due to the form factor (I do like a chunky camera!) so if the animal detect works well, it might just be enough to push me into a purchase, particularly if it works tolerably with the Oly 40-150 2.8.
 
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Covina, California
I'm watching this with interest, as probably 90% of my shooting is with dogs and cats. A G9 is tempting enough as it is due to the form factor (I do like a chunky camera!) so if the animal detect works well, it might just be enough to push me into a purchase, particularly if it works tolerably with the Oly 40-150 2.8.
Haven't tried the 40-150 pro on the g9 (after 2.0 FW) just yet but it is excellent with the 12-40 pro so I don't see why the 40-150 pro should be any different.
 

chicks

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Some samples from today's walk using the G9 and PL 100-400 (mostly at the long end) with Animal Detect. So long as lighting is good, and not too many branches, it does a pretty good job, IMHO.
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chicks

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The only halfway decent BIF I was able to manage today with Animal Detect.

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ralf-11

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@ralf-11 yeah the thing to remember is that that Message is NOT the STATUS, its telling you to press the D-Pad UP button to turn it OFF. They should really rename it to "Turn Animal AF Off".
Thanks - Panny made a serious ergonomic mistake on that one.

I get a box (or rectangle) even at fairly low light, no crosshairs - I now wonder where the focal point is, hopefully on the eye...
 

Darmok N Jalad

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Working pretty well. Even with some obstructions, the camera found the squirrel with good accuracy. These are with the P45-150.
P1001082.jpg
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Light was a bit dull, but when I got a clear shot I got a box around the subject, which didn't happen yesterday. Looking forward to trying it with better light, and experimenting with the near and far focus, which I haven't read up on yet.

Quite a big crop on the heron, which seemed to be trying to hide :) Box around the head.

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P1023681 clive heron by Rose McGillicuddy, on Flickr

Got a box around the mother duck:
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P1023683 clive duck family by Rose McGillicuddy, on Flickr
 

D7k1

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I found it very good for birds/animals that are not moving fast. For fast flyers I've fond that small box and near focus is the real deal. All in all these two additions (animal/bird rec and Far/Near focus) really add to the usability of the camera. Made a post in share birds.
 

gwydionjhr

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I have to try it yet, but I was watching a video that was talking about face detect, and it said once you've got the box around the face you have to move the joystick left/right enable the eye detect and tell the camera which eye you want the focus on. I wonder if that's the same for Animal AF.
 

jacrider

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I had a go witht this in my backyard. Found a squirrel...

G9 with PL 100-400mm @ 400mm

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ToxicTabasco

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I just did some preliminary test on the new features, and to get a grip on how to use them for photo and video.
And, hope to capture some wildlife with this new Animal AF on my next roadtrip.

For photo, the new Animal AFC keeps the critters in focus better than the AFC tracking alone. It seems to identify birds and cats without pressing the AF/AE button, and holds the focus while the critter changes distance. However there is still a tiny bit of hunting when the critter changes distance. Thus, it could be iffy with very high burst modes. But for single shot and slow burst, it works pretty good. I suspect the lens' AF ability will play a huge part on how well this works for pics, as well as the skill of the shooter.

Also, there is no focus peaking when using the AFC. But the focus peaking is available when you press the Back Button AF/AE in AFF mode, or use manual mode with AF single point. I've never really had problems getting shots with the DfD and manual AF. I have Animal AF set up on C1 for photo and video. This allows a quick switch from AFC with regular AF, to Animal AF when shooting BIF, or switching from close to far subjects.

For Video: The Animal AF works great for pets like dogs and cats or huge birds. It is much better than using AFC alone with video IME. Also, the focus transitions are smoother with Animal AF. It allows for decent video tracking AF in close areas like rooms. And can do well with various lighting conditions outdoors. With Video, the AF is a box that follows the critter, and keeps it in focus. Works great with the 35-100 II and 12-35 II in a variety of light conditions.

In the past, I used manual focus with AF "one area" to do video to get smoother transitions when critters changed distance. And often struggled with big focus changes while run and gun video shooting. This new Animal AF allows me to keep the critter in focus through the distance changes, which allows me to focus on the composition and camera movement.

Also, there is a feature option for video on the G9 that allows for AFC on all the time, or AFC only when shooting video. Having this with the Animal AF is a great upgrade for video. Nevertheless, This new 2.0 firmware is like a new camera for video. The upgrades are major, and, I'm looking forward to making the most of it.
 
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Messages
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I just did some preliminary test on the new features, and to get a grip on how to use them for photo and video.
And, hope to capture some wildlife with this new Animal AF on my next roadtrip.

For photo, the new Animal AFC keeps the critters in focus better than the AFC tracking alone. It seems to identify birds and cats without pressing the AF/AE button, and holds the focus while the critter changes distance. However there is still a tiny bit of hunting when the critter changes distance. Thus, it could be iffy with very high burst modes. But for single shot and slow burst, it works pretty good. I suspect the lens' AF ability will play a huge part on how well this works for pics, as well as the skill of the shooter.

Also, there is no focus peaking when using the AFC. But the focus peaking is available when you press the Back Button AF/AE in AFF mode, or use manual mode with AF single point. I've never really had problems getting shots with the DfD and manual AF. I have Animal AF set up on C1 for photo and video. This allows a quick switch from AFC with regular AF, to Animal AF when shooting BIF, or switching from close to far subjects.

For Video: The Animal AF works great for pets like dogs and cats or huge birds. It is much better than using AFC alone with video IME. Also, the focus transitions are smoother with Animal AF. It allows for decent video tracking AF in close areas like rooms. And can do well with various lighting conditions outdoors. With Video, the AF is a box that follows the critter, and keeps it in focus. Works great with the 35-100 II and 12-35 II in a variety of light conditions.

In the past, I used manual focus with AF "one area" to do video to get smoother transitions when critters changed distance. And often struggled with big focus changes while run and gun video shooting. This new Animal AF allows me to keep the critter in focus through the distance changes, which allows me to focus on the composition and camera movement.

Also, there is a feature option for video on the G9 that allows for AFC on all the time, or AFC only when shooting video. Having this with the Animal AF is a great upgrade for video. Nevertheless, This new 2.0 firmware is like a new camera for video. The upgrades are major, and, I'm looking forward to making the most of it.
Thanks for that info. I have had trouble getting focus when the birds move. More practice needed.
 

ToxicTabasco

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Thanks for that info. I have had trouble getting focus when the birds move. More practice needed.
Thanks. I just did a AF test at Salton Sea with the Lumix G9 using the Animal Detect AF, in mode 2 with some birds on the ground and in the air. The Animal AF worked great for cats moving at close distance. But if the birds are small and far away, they are more difficult to keep steady in the frame. From about 100mm and closer the Animal Detect AF seems to work best. Beyond 100mm (MFT), the lens and shooting technique will play a bigger part in getting shots.

Even the small critters showed up in small boxes, and sometimes there were 2 boxes around each owl. The long shots had no boxes but were in focus.

However, one strange thing happened at Salton Sea with the new firmware. I was getting some crazy Shutter Speeds while shooting in aperture priority.

Here're some pics of the test. Crazy shutter speeds hand held.
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Close up cropped in.
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Below a un-edited shot of a BIF with Animal Detect AF. No box showed up, but it was in focus.
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Anyway, all the best with the new firmware and the AF.
In this 4K video I push the new firmware's AF to the limits of failure. And it will show some success and failure.
 
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Treasure Coast FL
I tried out the Animal Detect this morning. I think it did a pretty good job picking out the birds when there were twigs and other stuff that seemed to confuse the camera previously.
These first two pics the camera put a box around the bird immediately. There were a lot of branches and leaves to work around and it still picked the bird right out. There were a couple times I had to recompose and try again, but most of the time it worked right away.
These aren't very good pics for a variety of reasons, but they did demonstrate (to me, anyway) that the AD function does work.
The third pic is when I used the "Near" AF shift. I was trying to focus on the little guy and, as it is known to do, the camera focused repeatedly on the background. I hit the assigned "Near" button and *bam* it locked focus and stayed there. That is a tremendous improvement over when the camera would just stubbornly focus on the background over and over and cause me to cuss.
I have only had a few hours to try out these new features but they seem to be a definite functional upgrade.

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Slade

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Nov 26, 2019
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MrRunciter - just to confirm, the near/far AF control can be assigned to a function button as opposed to having to go into the menus and change?
 

Slade

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Nov 26, 2019
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Can anyone explain how to do this please? Many thanks
I don't have a G9 but more than likely will be purchasing soon as they are presently a great price. I have been researching the improvements in autofocus with the hope of moving animals/bird in flight improvements.

Read the comments here, one user has posted very positive comments and discusses the near/far being able to add to the AE lock button but no other button, perhaps you can confirm this?
 
Joined
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Messages
106
Location
Treasure Coast FL
MrRunciter - just to confirm, the near/far AF control can be assigned to a function button as opposed to having to go into the menus and change?
Can anyone explain how to do this please? Many thanks
I don't have a G9 but more than likely will be purchasing soon as they are presently a great price. I have been researching the improvements in autofocus with the hope of moving animals/bird in flight improvements.

Read the comments here, one user has posted very positive comments and discusses the near/far being able to add to the AE lock button but no other button, perhaps you can confirm this?

I had to go get the camera out because I couldn't remember how I did it lol.

Anyway, Menu/Set > Custom (the wrench with the "C") Operation > Fn Button Set > Setting Rec Mode

This brings up the little outline of the camera with all the FN buttons highlighted.
I put mine on FN5.

So: Fn5 > Menu/Set > Page 2 of 19 "AF-ON: Near Shift"

The thing that I found confusing, and still do, is that when I hit the assigned Fn button, it focuses without any indication that Near Shift is engaged. All I have to go on is the fact that it refused to focus on the intended subject several times until I hit the button, at which point it changed immediately.

Also, if I remember correctly, this particular function can only be assigned to a physical button, not one of the Fn "buttons" on the touchscreen. I noticed that when you go to assign functions, there are 19 pages available on the physical buttons and 17 pages on the touchscreen buttons.
 

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