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G9 + 100-400mm lens: Autofocus Locks on Background

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by Ajay1, May 23, 2019.

  1. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Legend Subscribing Member

    Jan 3, 2014
    Houston
    Since this problem doesn’t seem to happen with Olympus I don’t think it’s a cdaf problem.
     
  2. Mack

    Mack Mu-43 Top Veteran

    883
    Jan 14, 2018
    Does the G9 have an "Auto Focus Limit" setting where you can set an operating distance range in the menu and not have the shutter fire unless focus is achieved?

    I use it in two Olympus bodies. Example: One is set for Near=25' and Distance=45' to keep it from drifting off onto some distant background with birds. I believe Olympus has the default Distant/Far set at 9,999.9 feet which slows the focus down and causes me to go behind the bird at times.

    With the hummingbirds and their feeder, if I don't use the AF Limiter it will focus on the wall behind the feeder as they dart about. I setup so the wall will focus initially, and then keep backing it nearer in the AF Limit menu maybe a foot (You can limit it to tenths of a foot.) so it will not achieve a focus lock on the wall in operation, but the birds will be within the AF limit range.
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2019
    • Informative Informative x 1
  3. Ajay1

    Ajay1 Mu-43 Rookie

    22
    Feb 28, 2014
    SE MN
    Here's a couple of shots taken just last night of a juvenile Eastern Bluebird showing how large the subject appears. It would not unlock from the background. I had to move my focus to the ground to obtain close-focus, then recompose the shot. Luckily, I had a patient subject waiting to eat mealworms from a tray while his siblings ate first!
     

    Attached Files:

  4. Ajay1

    Ajay1 Mu-43 Rookie

    22
    Feb 28, 2014
    SE MN
    That's a good point but the G9 does not offer that feature and focus limiter on the 100-400mm lens is either Full or 5 meters to infinity. In either switch setting, the lens is allowed to go to infinity. If the lens had a third setting that allowed close focus to maybe 15 meters, that would solve this problem or allow users to manually over-ride the switch settings.
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2019
    • Like Like x 1
  5. Ajay1

    Ajay1 Mu-43 Rookie

    22
    Feb 28, 2014
    SE MN
    Olympus is not CD, it has phase detect...at least on the EM1 II and now the EM1X.
     
  6. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Legend Subscribing Member

    Jan 3, 2014
    Houston
    Which is used for CAF, still uses CDAF for SAF. I’ve also never had this problem on my EM1 or EM5 (both original versions)
     
  7. Mack

    Mack Mu-43 Top Veteran

    883
    Jan 14, 2018
    The AF Limiter I was referring to is in the body and not on the lens itself. In my Olympus camera menu, I can set any AF lens to a tenth of a foot in both the Near and Far distances. Some lenses have a limit on the lens itself, but in the body menu itself is where I usually set mine to fine tune it and not on the lens itself. That's why I asked if your G9 body has that capability in its menu as does the Oly. E-M1 Mark II and E-M1X. It might be in the G9 owner's manual someplace if it is capable of doing that.
     
  8. Ajay1

    Ajay1 Mu-43 Rookie

    22
    Feb 28, 2014
    SE MN
    Ok. Thanks. Then it must be Panasonic's software/firmware that for whatever reason seems to overlook this situation. It's interesting that the problem has ported over to their FF cameras.
     
  9. Ajay1

    Ajay1 Mu-43 Rookie

    22
    Feb 28, 2014
    SE MN
    There's no option for that. Good to know Oly has that. Maybe I might try an EM1 II, but will it work with the Panny 100-400mm?
     
  10. JamesD

    JamesD Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    122
    Mar 18, 2015
    Elk Grove, CA
    Jim Landers
    This is the very reason I no longer shoot a G9. Too many missed shots. Bummer, I loved that camera otherwise.
     
  11. Mack

    Mack Mu-43 Top Veteran

    883
    Jan 14, 2018
    Well, that's a bummer the G9 doesn't have it! :( 

    This is what it looks like in the E-M1X menu which is set for 25.0 to 50.0 feet which is one of my bird range settings. It keeps the Olympus 300mm f/4 focus from going off to who knows where. Fwiw, that lens has three settings on it: 1.4-4m, 1.4 to Infinity, and 4m to Infinity, but I use the camera's limiter range menu as the 4m is often a sticking point given my preferred shooting range.

    AF Limiter Menu.jpg
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
     
  12. Ajay1

    Ajay1 Mu-43 Rookie

    22
    Feb 28, 2014
    SE MN
    That is really nice to know on both accounts. I really like the ergonomics of the G9 but this has me thinking. Thanks.
     
  13. flamingfish

    flamingfish Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Nov 16, 2012
    Emily
    I've had this problem with the E-M5 II and the 100-400. I thought it was just user error (inexperience with the lens), but now I'm wondering. When it happened to me, I had to move the camera away from the subject, find something at the same distance that was nice and contrasty, and then carefully move back to the subject, assuming the subject was still there.
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
  14. jbruce

    jbruce Mu-43 Rookie Subscribing Member

    23
    Oct 15, 2017
    Northern Minnesota
    John
    Identical experience for me also, with the identical setup, and it is very frustrating--but I persevere. John
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. Daniel J. Cox

    Daniel J. Cox Mu-43 Rookie

    12
    Jan 29, 2013
    Bozeman, Montana
    Daniel J. Cox
    I've also seen this issue with all my Lumix cameras. But to be fair it also happened now and again with my Nikons. Do you have the most current firmware for both lens and camera? I saw a noticeable improvement after the most current firmware for the G9. Here's a video I created to show a relatively quick workaround
    .
     
  16. ac12

    ac12 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 24, 2018
    I have had a kinda similar loss of focus lock shooting a hurdler "head on," where it was relatively easy to hold the AF point on the hurdler, yet the AF would switch from the hurdler to the background and sometimes back to the hurdler. This was with a 75-300 on an EM1-mk1.

    My experience with Nikon has been, if the AF point is on something with low contrast, like a one-color jersey/shirt, it looses AF lock and goes into hunt mode.
     
  17. Ajay1

    Ajay1 Mu-43 Rookie

    22
    Feb 28, 2014
    SE MN
    Both G9 and the 100-400 are at Vers. 1.2. I believe this is the most current version. I have also seen a similar problem with Canon DSLR's but typically a second pump of the focus, it will snap in to focus. Thanks.
     
  18. D7k1

    D7k1 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Nov 18, 2013
    So after playing around today, for me the following is the best and quickest work-a-round. I have AF+MF assigned to the button next to the grip. As I hold the camera remembering manual focus is direction short movement turn the focus counter clock wise, far distance turn the lens clockwise, if it won't lock in AF I press the button and manually focus to where I am close and then hit back button again. Works a high percentage for me. Once you do it a few times it is easy to do.
     
  19. Fred S

    Fred S Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    768
    Feb 20, 2012
    Calgary
    Fred S
    Yup . Same with my EM 5 ii. And the 100 400.
    Very common when i shoot a bird on a fence post.
    I have to focus on the fence post and move to the bird.
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  20. grcolts

    grcolts Mu-43 Veteran

    355
    Feb 1, 2010
    Texas
    Gary
    My G9 does this too with the 100-300 ii G lens.
    A couple of things that help is to focus first on something in the foreground of the subject you are shooting. Then focus on your subject. Many times this trick will then focus correctly on the bird or whatever you are trying to shoot. Second, try using the joy stick to move the AF point to where you want it to focus. I have read that the focus problem is due to the contrast AF system of the camera. Check to make sure too you have the newest firmware update as it is supposed to have helped the situation. Good luck.
    GR
     
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