OMD Owners: How do YOU focus?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by Heavy Doody, Mar 22, 2013.

  1. Heavy Doody

    Heavy Doody Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 17, 2012
    Just curious to know how you focus when you're shooting. Tap to focus then shutter release and viewfinder to shoot? Tap to shoot? All in the viewfinder?

    Also, if you do it all through the viewfinder, how do you tell the camera what object to focus on?

    I'm coming from a Canon DSLR, where I looked through the viewfinder, and used the dials to select the focus point. Wondering what the equivalent action will be when my OMD gets here.

  2. Yohan Pamudji

    Yohan Pamudji Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 21, 2012
    Mississippi, USA
    I use the 4 directional buttons on the back to move the AF point when looking through the VF since that's the only way you can do it in the VF. When using the rear screen it just depends on the situation. Often I'll use touch focus (not touch shutter) because you can make the AF point smaller for that mode and it's of course faster to move the focus area. I've found that the default AF point size is too big and prone to latching on to brighter or more contrasty items in the background. But sometimes when in non-challenging AF scenarios I'll leave it in the default AF point mode and use the arrow keys. Force of habit I guess, or maybe just don't want to deal with switching back and forth from AF point modes--there are quirks with the smaller AF point mode, the most annoying of which is that you can't change any other shooting settings while in that mode.
  3. Lawrence A.

    Lawrence A. Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 14, 2012
    New Mexico
    Single auto focus point in the center, then recompose. I do most of my exposures manually, so there is no metering penalty. It just seems simpler to me than fiddling with focus points while I'm trying to shoot. I have the touch screen turned off; I find it annoying.
    • Like Like x 2
  4. speedandstyle

    speedandstyle Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I don't have an E-M5 yet but I use the same method as Lawrence. I hate trying to move the focus point around. I set it to center focus, lock the focus and then recompose. I find it quick and easy.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. LowTEC

    LowTEC Mu-43 Regular

    Compose, touch screen focus point, and shutter.
    That is much faster, more accurate, more flexible than my old: single point focus-compose-shutter DSLR technique
  6. mblevins

    mblevins Mu-43 Rookie

    Mar 4, 2013
    Center in the viewfinder, have F2 set to autofocus, then recompose and adjust exposure - very happy with that method.
  7. hazwing

    hazwing Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 25, 2012
  8. Rockinggoose

    Rockinggoose Mu-43 Regular

    Exactly my method too, simplicity is the key to good composition for me.

  9. akhyar

    akhyar Mu-43 Rookie

    Jul 16, 2012
    I'm old skool, so center focus thrugh the viewfinder, then recompose.
    If I pass the camera to my wife, she wil use the LCD screen to tap to focus.
  10. Agent00soul

    Agent00soul Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 22, 2010
    I tap the screen to focus and release the shutter a lot. It's the only mode where you have the small focus point and the highlight/shadow blinkies at the same time.
  11. Ramsey

    Ramsey Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 9, 2013
    Zagreb, Croatia
  12. PeterB666

    PeterB666 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 14, 2010
    Tura Beach, Australia
    Unless I am using live view, I centre focus and recompose.

    Live view is great for tripod use and macro work especially with the screen angled so you can shoot at odd angles. I will use the touch screen to change my focus point if required.

    I do a lot of extreme-low light manual focus and with a very fast lens like the Voigtlander 25mm f/0.95 I can even see stuff. Brilliant. I have customised my buttons to switch manual focus on and off and love to use the zoomed mode to focus. Of course, having to stop down to take the image slows things but is very easy.
  13. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    Depends. Sometimes its touch to focus and shoot (works really well in a lot of circumstances, such as shooting from the hip or overhead). If I more or less know where I'll be focussing and I'm using the viewfinder I do one of the following:

    1. Preset the smallest AF box using the touchscreen and shoot with the viewfinder.
    2. With eye to the viewfinder, hit fn2 and use the twin dials to select the appropriate AF box (custom setting).

    Otherwise small center point and focus/recompose
  14. Heavy Doody

    Heavy Doody Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 17, 2012
    Good dialog so far. Thanks, everyone.

    I'm actually surprised at how many people focus then recompose. Do you ever find blur/errors when shooting really shallow DoF due to slight incidental shifts forward or backwards? Or a subject that may move between the time you focus and the time you shoot?
  15. newbert

    newbert Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 22, 2012
    Glens Falls, NY
    When shooting handheld, this is what I do too (because I prefer using the EVF).

    When on a tripod (or otherwise shooting in "stealth" mode), I use the LCD screen and just tap where I want the point of focus to be.
  16. NRV

    NRV Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 3, 2013
    New York
    All of this
  17. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    If I'm shooting long glass wide open I try to limit focus-recompose, but its not a huge deal with MFT's relatively deep depth of field.
  18. silversx80

    silversx80 Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 27, 2012
    North Carolina
    I focus and recompose when I have time in the capture. I have my mode set up so I can quickly go to full 35-point, and back, as necessary. I use eye-centered face-detect for people.

    I've been using touch to focus and release the shutter more and more. I find that it's more convenient to focus-recompose. I tend to get more keepers and don't have to worry about my focus plane being off of my subject.
  19. gugarci

    gugarci Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 8, 2012
    Lyndhurst, NJ
    • Like Like x 2
  20. duthied

    duthied New to Mu-43

    Mar 20, 2013
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    I mostly use my Olympus E-PL2 for street stuff and don't want to wait for auto-focus every time, so I'll set the back-button (AEL button) for auto-focus and set the shutter button for exposure+shutter.

    Then when I'm ready for a stroll, I'll back-button focus on something a few feet away, set my aperture accordingly (f11 if it's a nice sunny day)

    ...but for other occasions, I'll use the usual shutter button focus, center focus and recompose.
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