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04-20-2011, 02:43 PM   #1
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Nikon D3 - How do I turn off that bright light during auto-focus?

It's driving my models crazy, I can't seem to turn it off? When I auto focus that bright comes on and blinds everyone... Not even sure what it's there for.


Last edited by Noob; 04-20-2011 at 02:51 PM.
04-20-2011, 02:55 PM   #2
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It's an autofocus assist beam. Helps the camera achieve focus in low light.

There's undoubtedly some option in the menu to disable it. Just dig around a bit.
04-20-2011, 03:05 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by deadwolfbones Quote
It's an autofocus assist beam. Helps the camera achieve focus in low light.

There's undoubtedly some option in the menu to disable it. Just dig around a bit.
Do people usually leave it on or off for portraits, fashion etc..? Or was the model's complaint unjustified?
04-20-2011, 05:10 PM   #4
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I've turned mine off on my D300s, it came on totally unnecessarily when it wasn't really that dark. It's in the menu somewhere.

04-20-2011, 05:21 PM   #5
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It's option A9 in my D300 under the autofocus menu as "Built-in AF-assist illuminator."
04-20-2011, 06:35 PM   #6
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I can confirm in the D700 that it's also option "a9" in the autofocus section of the custom setting menu. I presume it's the same in the D3 as well.

Personally, I have it set for quick access in "My Menu" as I like to turn it on or off, depending on where I'm shooting. If you're photographing models inside a studio, there should be enough ambient light (or light from the modelling lamps) for your camera to focus unassisted. But when I shoot in a dark venue, then it can be quite helpful.
04-21-2011, 06:43 AM   #7
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But is auto focus so much better if you leave it on?
04-21-2011, 06:56 AM   #8
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Depends on the lighting conditions... but D3's AF is snappy enough to lock on in just about the total darkness... You can also switch to AF-C, AF-assist is disabled in that mode...

04-22-2011, 06:00 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Noob Quote
But is auto focus so much better if you leave it on?
If you're shooting models, you shouldn't really need autofocus, let alone an AF assist lamp. I also assume you have lighting, which if you have the modeling lamps on, you don't need the AF assist light.

Other than the conditions it sounds like you're shooting in, yes, it makes AF more accurate. That's why Pentax has it on their cameras also.
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