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Canon VIXIA Series AVCHD and HDV Camcorders
For VIXIA / LEGRIA Series (HF G, HF S, HF and HV) consumer camcorders.


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Old February 2nd, 2007, 11:20 AM   #1
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HV20 Focusing questions

Okay - somehow I totally missed hearing about this camera. 24p HD for $1000 bucks and manual audio. Of course, what I noticed is no manual focus ring.

However looking the picture of the HV20, there appears to be a embedded dial and slightly behind it - the Instant AF button. I'm wondering if you can set the camera to manual focus mode and using, the embedded dial to focus and hit Instant AF as needed i.e. zoom tight, hit instant AF, zoom out and cam will hold focus point.

If the above or similar method works OK, I actually think no focus ring is not a big thing as I'm not a huge fan of servo focus rings anyway on Canon's other models. A true manual focus ring is fabulous but if this solution works okay, this might be the "Bolex" for indie filmmakers. If you can get 24p on tape for $1000 and have decent control over audio. focus and exposure, the world will get very interesting.
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Old February 2nd, 2007, 12:27 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
there appears to be a embedded dial and slightly behind it - the Instant AF button.
To be a little more accurate, that's an Auto / Manual focus button. Instant AF is either always on or always off, and is toggled within the camera setup menu (choose between Instant AF or Normal AF). And I agree with you, that this focus dial is most likely no less useful than the auto-servo focus ring found on earlier Optura versions.
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Old February 2nd, 2007, 12:29 PM   #3
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Thanks for the clarification. So there's no way to run the camera in manual focus and get a quick use of Instant AF?
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Old February 2nd, 2007, 12:35 PM   #4
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Sure, exactly as you described... press the Auto / Manual focus button in order to toggle between auto and manual focus; which AF mode it's in (either Normal or Instant) depends on the camera setup menu choice. For example if you're using a wide-angle adapter, then it's going to block the I.AF sensor; and therefore you'll want to choose Normal AF.
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Old February 2nd, 2007, 01:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Hurd
Sure, exactly as you described... press the Auto / Manual focus button in order to toggle between auto and manual focus; which AF mode it's in (either Normal or Instant) depends on the camera setup menu choice. For example if you're using a wide-angle adapter, then it's going to block the I.AF sensor; and therefore you'll want to choose Normal AF.
Okay. Sorry to be dense/picky here, but if you are manual focus and switch to Auto, when you switch back to manual will it perfectly hold the last focus point when you were in Auto or does switching out of Auto reset focus to a default distance? Basically, I'm trying to figure out if the standard way many pros focus with MF lenses works with the HV20: zoom in, focus (manual or Auto/IF), lock focus by switching to manual focus, zoom out and focus point is held.
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Old February 2nd, 2007, 01:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephen van Vuuren
Thanks for the clarification. So there's no way to run the camera in manual focus and get a quick use of Instant AF?

On the HV10....

Hit the focus button to let the instant AF grab on to what you are looking at.

Then hit the button once more to return to MF with your object of interest still in focus.
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Old February 2nd, 2007, 01:48 PM   #7
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Okay, that sounds promising. I will have to see if I can find a local retailer with a HV10 I can try this out.
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Old February 2nd, 2007, 03:19 PM   #8
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This is exactly how I like to focus on my Sony camcorder. It's always set to manual focus but I'm constantly using this nice slider/toggle switch which allows the auto focus to grab focus for me while never leaving manual mode. It works great.

Also, I wonder if always have the instant auto focus on effects battery life and if so how dramatically.
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Old February 2nd, 2007, 03:29 PM   #9
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I don't know about everybody else but the instant AF works so well on the HV10 that I sometimes don't even bother setting it to manual as I don't seem to get any better results. The manual focus toggle has been extremely hard to control (for me) on the HV10 so I have to think that dial on the HV20 can only be an improvement!
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