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Old Apr 23, 2004, 10:10 AM   #1
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Default Can you force an FZ1's focal length to infinity?

Well, maybe infinity is not what I'm after. I'm looking for a way to capture no/low light shots where the EVF/LCD is rendered useless. In these conditions I can usually obtain a decent composure eyeballing the camera like I'm looking down the barrel of a gun and snapping the picture. Composition usually isn't the problem though, it's obtaining a decent focus. I'd love to figure out a way to focus lock the camera when there is no/low light so I can have an acceptably short hyperfocal length (maybe a couple of feet) and enough DOF to cover the usable flash range. Any hints on no/low light shooting with your FZ's? The reason I want to figure this out is that I want to try to use my FZ1 on my next backpacking trip instead of my Casio Exilim (fixed focus). But, shots at night in camp when there is zero light is going to be tough with the FZ without a focus assist lamp. I experimented a bit last night but I could never achieve repeatable results. Trying to use an auxilliary light to acheive focus was a PITA. Got any hints?
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Old Apr 23, 2004, 5:45 PM   #2
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You can preset the focus to any distance by using the focus button to lock focus rather than the shutter button. Enable the focus button in the menu. As for a light source to use for focus lock, use a flashlight. Of course, if there's no light you will not get a very good shot anyway.
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Old Apr 24, 2004, 1:14 AM   #3
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I don't have anything to add to Fred's suggestions, but I too am puzzled why Panasonic didn't put an infinity focus position on the FZ1 & FZ10. There have been occassions where I really could have used it without looking all over to find something bright enough for the camera to focus-lock on.
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Old Apr 24, 2004, 2:54 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Normcar
Quote:
There have been occassions where I really could have used it without looking all over to find something bright enough for the camera to focus-lock on.
Can you offer an example?
Yes, the other night I was in my backyard at night. It was cloudy and there was a new moon. I wanted to take a picture of my neighbors barn which has one light over the door, but the camera would not focus lock and I didn't have anything else to focus on that was far enough away to set the lens at infinity. Another example would be that I have taken pictures of car tail lights on the highway, (using my Vivitar), with the shutter set a 4 seconds that required an infinity setting. I enjoy taking night photos. I have some pictures taken with my Olympus that were taken at night that look like they were taken in daylight after setting the shutter to 8 seconds.
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Old Apr 24, 2004, 9:13 AM   #5
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Puff Puff Give Give!

It's hard to post photos when you can't take em cause the camera will not focus lock correctly. I ususally just trash the ones that won't focus lock right so I don't have em to post. Imagine for a minute you are backpacking in the back country. There is of course ZERO light. Your eyes will adjust enough to let you see by the starlight but that's not nearly enough for the camera to get any sort of decent focus lock. In this case if I could get a focus lock on infinity I could just use the flash and get a decent shot of camp life at night. I run into a lot of opportunities where a focus lock to infinity would be great, but the camera just doesn't always cooperate if you do not have good source of light to get the focus lock on.
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Old Apr 24, 2004, 12:47 PM   #6
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JinE, that's where manual focus and the focus ring on the FZ10 comes in, it's great and works wonderfully...don't ignore it. Lock doesn't exist in manual so it's immediately erased as a problem.
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Old Apr 24, 2004, 11:21 PM   #7
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Now if only my FZ1 had the FZ10's manual focus ring.
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Old May 9, 2004, 11:50 PM   #8
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I would like to know at what distance infinty begins at a particular camera setting. (ie: focal length and f/stop) I could set up flags around the yard or find a picket fence and use a tape measure but I don't want to reinvent the wheel if someone already has this info..

Then, in low light situations I could find something at that approximate distance, shine a bright light on it and focus-lock on it.My camera would then be focused at infinity. Any ideas?

Al
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Old May 18, 2004, 12:59 AM   #9
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Well, when I get my fz10, I'm gonna get a miners hat. Then I'm gonna make up different diffusers, so that sometimes, like when using flash, I can just leave the light on, and the flash will cancel the flashlight out.

Then, if I get really involved, I'll try to wire a remote flash sync switch to the hat that will shut the flashlight off, the moment the flash pre-flashes.

Kind of like an automatic set up.

And since it will be night time, and dark out, I won't even have to worry about looking silly.

What do you think? Will it work?

mm2

p.s. a mechanicshead mountedflashlight might be even better!
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Old May 20, 2004, 8:06 PM   #10
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I found the answer to my question under the following link. There is a formula for finding the DOF at different focal lenghts. It's easy to do and may come in handy.

Al

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...mp;forum_id=23




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