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Old Nov 22, 2003, 6:22 PM   #1
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Default Canon A70 - shutter lag

I'll try to be somewhat brief here - I'm about 90% sure that I've decided on the A70 as it seems like a good fit (as far as I can tell, anyway)

But here's my quesiton - can anybody tell me about shutter lag and the A70? This is one of my biggest concerns with digicams in general. Maybe I've just used a couple with very poor timing in this matter, as it seems like it takes forever from the time I press the shutter button until the picture is taken. Anyway, I have read the specs at dpreview.com, but they're pretty meaningless to me, as it just seems like its all over my head. Since this is my first digicam, will I just have to get used to shutter lag? I also am a little confused by the manual focus process, which looks like it might make the lag better.

I greatly appreciate any feedback anyone can give me! I'm a newbie, so please be gentle.
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Old Nov 22, 2003, 6:59 PM   #2
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With the default settings on Auto, there is quite a shutter lag... but not a whole lot more than many other cameras. There are a few things you can do to minimize this.

One is to turn off the AIAF, which selects one of 5 'zones' to use as the primary focus. With this turned off the center zone only is used. IMO, this appears to work better, sometimes the camera selects something other than what I wish to focus on. It seems to get a focus lock a bit quicker with AIAF turned off also... others have commented on this as well.

You can also 'prefocus'. Say you're taking a shot of your child's basketball game, and want to catch an action shot. Turn off the AIAF so that you can use the center focus, center the focus box on your kid, half press the shutter and hold it. When the critical moment comes you can press the shutter all the way down and there will be no shutter lag at all.

Also, as you said you can use the manual focus. This isn't quick tho, like it is with a manual focus ring on an SLR. If your subject will be at a constant distance, or better yet at 'infinity', then this will work wll for you.

If i'm not mistaken, you can combine these techniques.. you can half-press the shutter and hold it for a second, then hit the manual focus button twice (once gives you macro). Then you can release the shutter and the focus will stay locked where you left it, util you depress the shutter, or adjust/release the manual focus.

I believe most digital cameras have a shutter lag. The A70 doesn't seem to me to be any worse than any others. Your best bet is to try it (and several others) in a shop before you buy.

Good luck,
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Old Nov 22, 2003, 7:01 PM   #3
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Forgot to mention... the first thing you have to do is switch from auto to program (P). Otherwise you'll go crazy trying to figure out how to disable AIAF... I don't think you can in auto.

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