AlphaMirrorless 022: Focus on Focus

On this episode of the AlphaMirrroless podcast Juan and Andy walk you through the myriad of settings and options for the auto focus system on the Alpha Mirrorless cameras. As many of you know there are many many options and settings for the auto focus system on the Alpha cameras and it can be a bit daunting to make sense of it all. We spend this entire episode walking throigh the options available and when you should be using them.

As always, if after listening to this episode you have any questions about the AutoFocus system, send them our way. We will do our best to answer them on a future episode of the podcast.

We don’t always have all the answers, but if we don’t we will research it and try to give you the best answer we can. So what have you got to lose, go ahead and send in your questions to us by going to this form.

Links mentioned on the episode

Wishes of the Week

  • Juan: I know I will sound like a broken record, but I wish the menus were a little better organized, the AF items are scattered across the menu system making it difficult to make simple adjustments
  • Andy: Program button on lens to give +/- X amount of EV compensation. I have the button programmed now to go to the ev comp screen, but it would be cool to have “bam!” +1 just by pushing that button. Think, birds against the sky…

Picks of the Week

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About The Author

Host, AlphaMirrorless

Juan is a wildlife photographer who currently lives in Maine. Juan lives and breathes photography and travels around the country making images, teaching and leading photo workshops. Juan's favorite destination is Yellowstone in winter.

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  • Torstein Ihle

    I´m a fan your podcast. I recently converted from Nikon to Sony, a A7RII and rhe 6300. Love them both. I do portraits and and landscapes, then the large 43 mb sensor in the A7RII is superb. But mostly I work with reportage and events, then I prefer to shoot in half size, 24 mb.

    I would prefer to to bee shooting in a compressed RAW-fille mode in that size. Thats not possible. I dont think I´m alone wishing this and I think its just a software issue. Can we start a campaign for half size raw-files in the Sony A7RII?

    • I agree, this is one area that I think Canon has a leg up. It would be nice to have a selection of RAW file sizes. In my case I shoot quite a bit of TimeLapses and always shoot raw, but I don’t need the full 42MPix for time lapses, I would love the ability to select 24 or even 12 MPix.

      -J

  • Steven Waldstein

    Good review of the capabilities although you didn’t talk at all about the variable sizes available for flexible spot (small, medium, and large). When using native lenses I find I can use small or medium with good results. When I use the Metabones IV adapter I find I need to go no smaller than medium or even large to give me 9 to 12 phase detect points. If I set it to small its a lot less reliable to focus quickly with the adapter.

    Also I didn’t think you needed to turn on Face detect to use Eye-AF, at least I don’t on my A7RII. Also I find that Eye-AF is only usefull in AF-C mode. Would be nice if you could make the camera automatically switch to AF-C from AF-S when Eye-AF is engaged. Right now for me its a two step process. Switch from back button focus to Eye-AF and then switch from AF-S to AF-C.

    Also I did find that programming the lens buttons like on the 70-200mm f/4 to Eye-AF is a great feature. Just push the button on the lens and Eye-AF is available. Better than switching my BBF to Eye-AF on the body.

  • Andy/Juan, thanks for this episode as well as all the other ones you guys have been working hard on!

    I’m a hobbyist photographer and recently made the switch from my D700 to the a6300 and love it. Although I had to give up on the full frame to go more compact and lighter, in the 3.5 weeks I’ve had the a6300 I’ve actually taken it out on almost every walk that we’ve been on with my 2y old toddler. I was feeling guilty before that most of the photos of her had been on the iPhone so now I’m super happy that I have a fantastic camera that still allows me to have interchangeable lenses, but light enough that I don’t think twice about taking it with me. I have to admit that I’d been considering the change for a while, but wasn’t until your review of the a6300 in episode 5 that got me looking deeper into it and I pulled the trigger on it… so, thanks!

    Just a comment specifically on something you talked about in this episode. You had mentioned assigning the C1/C2 keys to allow for one of them to select the AF type and the other for focus areas. I’ve found that on the a6300 (and I assume other Sony mirroless ones) that I can just press the Fn button, used the D-pad to quickly scroll to the AF type or focus area, and then use the clockwise or counterclockwise scroll to pick the new setting I want.

    Also, you had mentioned that you would link the non-Sony-manual document/website in the show notes and I don’t seem to see it in there.

    Thanks and keep up the awesome work!

  • ShowHarmony

    Here to second Juan’s wish for more consistent and coherent menus.