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How to get AFL on OM-D?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by Panut, May 22, 2012.

  1. Panut

    Panut Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 25, 2011
    Hi all,

    I have a brand new OM-D at hand, and the first Olympus ever I have.
    Having read the manual, googled the net, and tried different ways with the camera, I just can't figure out how to lock auto focus.
    There is the function AEL/AFL, but all I can make it do is AEL. How can I lock the focus instead?

    It seems to me that all the ael/afl modes I find on the camera have the effect that focus is "locked" when I half-press the shutter - but what kind of "lock" is that, as the camera will focus and lock again as soon as I press the shutter to take another shot!
    What I want is that pressing an fn button locks af, and I can shoot several photos with the same focusing, and release the af again by pressing the fn button again. Or something similar in effect.

    What am I missing here?

    Thanks in advance,
  2. Muntjack

    Muntjack Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 26, 2010
    I'm not near my camera at present but if it's like the E-P2 you have to select the 'Memo' option in the menus for AEL/AFL to remain locked until the button is pressed again.

  3. csnoel

    csnoel Mu-43 Rookie

    Apr 21, 2012

    I was asking the same thing last night? I can't seem to find anything.
  4. Brownian

    Brownian Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 28, 2012
    If you have the 12-50 kit lens, there is another Fn button on the barrel labeled L-Fn. The default function mapped to this is AF hold. It only works while the button is being held down.

    However, if you go into the button function menu and assign the MF (manual focus) function to this button - or any other button - You will get what you want. Autofocus on your subject, press the mapped button - say L-Fn - that will toggle MF mode on. Take your shots then press it again to cancel the MF mode and re-enable AF.
  5. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    This is called "Back Button Focus", and this is how you set it up on any Olympus digital system camera:

    Go to Menu => Sprocket => Button/Dial => AEL/AFL. There you can set Single AF, C-AF, and MF modes. Mode 3 is the one that assigns any of those AF types to the back-button. If you set MF to Mode 3, then that will still give you MF capabilities with the focus ring, but will add S-AF capabilities to the back-button. If you set C-AF to Mode 3, that will give you continuous AF as long as you hold down the back-button. You can also set S-AF to Mode 3, but in my opinion this is redundant if you have MF set to to Mode 3. You get S-AF + MF by using MF Mode 3 anyways. I just leave S-AF to the default Mode 1 just in case I ever for whatever crazy reason want to switch to shutter-focus. But I never do. ;) 

    Next, after you have your AF modes set, all you need to do is assign your AFL button, which will be your back focus button. On the PEN cameras this is in Menu => Sprocket => Button/Dial => Button Function, but this is the one part that can vary between models. For instance, on my old E-System cameras there was only one AFL button but it could be swapped to the Fn button so you had two choices instead (if I remember, I think the E-P1 was the same). With the newer PEN cameras your possibilities are much more expandable, and the OM-D has the most customizable buttons yet, allowing you to use the Fn1, Fn2, or Record buttons which are right by your right fingers for easy access. I would also suggest setting one of these to ISO. ;) 

    Of course, you then need to go through your regular control panel to set your camera to use one of the AF types that you have set to Mode 3, or use Menu => Sprocket => AF/MF => AF Mode to do that.
    • Like Like x 3
  6. Panut

    Panut Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 25, 2011
    Thanks Ned! Of course.
    I did know of back button focus (never used it before though), but it didn't occur to me that with that you can use it also to the same effect as AFL.

    (and yes, setting a button for ISO was the first thing I did :) 
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