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Back button focusing. What exactly is it, and what are my options with the GM5?

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by Generationfourth, Oct 10, 2015.

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  1. Generationfourth

    Generationfourth Mu-43 Regular

    172
    Sep 11, 2015
    It seems like there are two different explanations on the net for back button focusing:
    1. Simply assigning an AF lock/on button for your thumb and disabling the AF at half shutter push. Depending on the camera you either push or hold the button to lock the focus and shoot with out having to reestablish focus. With the GM5 you cannot disable the AF at half push of the shutter. This is fine by me. I like shooting a hybrid way of half pressing to establish focus, then pressing the AF lock (FN 2) to lock in that focus. This is a habit the GF1 taught me.
    2. A convenient way of holding the AF/AE button down while the subject is moving (camera is in AFS mode) and having the camera basically AFC on the subject while you snap away. I'm referencing this video where its seems like he is using method 1. when his daughter hits the ball. And when his daughter is running towards him he's holding down the button (damn look at how big that camera is :coco:) and the camera is keeping focus on her while he's shooting away.
    I'm interested in #2. Is it possible to a varying degree with the GM5?
     
  2. hazwing

    hazwing Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 25, 2012
    Australia
    You post intringued me so I had a play around with my GM5. I'm not much of a back button focus person myself, but here goes:

    To get back button focus - you can assign a Fn button to af/ae lock.
    For #1 - in the menu, change the af/ae lock function to "af lock" - press Fn button it will lock focus on that point. Press shutter button to take photo, shutter button does not 'refocus'. Will need to press Fn again to unlock that focus point. When unlocked the shutter button will return to normal with half press for AF lock.

    For #2 - change af/ae lock function to "AF-on". While holding down Fn button, camera will continue to refocus, press shutter button down whilst holding Fn to take photo. The issues I see with this, is the Fn buttons are not in very good locations for comfortable shooting with this method.
     
  3. Generationfourth

    Generationfourth Mu-43 Regular

    172
    Sep 11, 2015
    I spent a lot of time earlier playing with the GM5. #1 works perfectly fine and is my preferred method. #2 works and only works in AFC mode. Like you said you have to use the evf because your thumb will be in the way of the touchscreen. What I found to be equally as effective, but more comfortable, is just keeping the shutter button pressed halfway. seems to track the subject and lets you snap away without having to reset the focus.
     
  4. hazwing

    hazwing Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 25, 2012
    Australia
    I found #2 also works in AFS mode.