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Panasonic LUMIX G / GF / GH / GX Series
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 09:40 AM   #1
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GH2 question about focusing

Could any of you answer a couple questions for me about focusing. I have read the manual but it seems very hard to follow.

1#.Is there a way where I can use the manual focus option but still half press the button for the auto focus on the panasonic pancake 1.7 lens.

#2. When using a FD lens and in manual focus mode, can I have some type of focus assist during recording? It seems the focus assist(magnify) only works for me before pressing record. After record is pressed I am on my own and looks like I might need to buy a loop.

Thanks!
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 11:54 AM   #2
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

I believe, but hopefully am mistaken, that the answer is no to both of your questions.

I have tried both to no avail. I have also spent amazingly little time with the camera thought I've had it for awhile, so I have much to learn about it.
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 12:12 PM   #3
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

Thanks Jeff for the info, it was worth a shot. I read somewhere that people are using the EVF for lowlight/critical focus instead of using a loop or the flipout lcd. I got used to being able to control critical focus through my lcdvf on my 60d.

How are you or others handling this using the GH2? Also Jeff I want to know about your experience with you new zoom 2.8 for low light weddings!!

Thanks!
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 12:31 PM   #4
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

Steve, with the quality of the higher ISO images, the 2.8 Olympus 18-50 lens promises to be close to perfect, and I'm very excited about it. I am leaving behind the prime obsession I had initially, as they are just impractical for real life wedding stuff. Nice to have in the kit, but will I use them? I'm looking for a fast telephoto zoom, for camera #2, and then I can run a prime on my third camera.

The lens functions close to the same as a Lumix lens, cost $375. Hard to find though.
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 02:29 PM   #5
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

Jeff,do you miss it not having I.S.?

Norm
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 04:03 PM   #6
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Montoto View Post
Could any of you answer a couple questions for me about focusing. I have read the manual but it seems very hard to follow.

1#.Is there a way where I can use the manual focus option but still half press the button for the auto focus on the panasonic pancake 1.7 lens.

#2. When using a FD lens and in manual focus mode, can I have some type of focus assist during recording? It seems the focus assist(magnify) only works for me before pressing record. After record is pressed I am on my own and looks like I might need to buy a loop.

Thanks!
Steve,

The bad news is no to question #2.

For #1: set Custom Menu AF+MF to "ON", then pressing and holding the shutter button while turning the focus ring will allow manual focus. An easier alternative is: set custom menu AF/AE Lock to "ON", then a single AF/AE Lock button press will lock focus while turning the focus ring. Works with all my Lumix lenses.

Good luck.
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Old April 2nd, 2011, 08:57 PM   #7
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

You shouldn't need any focus assist with the FD's. They focus very smoothly and reliably manually. However be sure to focus via EVF, not LCD.
The AF features and controls on the GH2 are incredibly confusing. The manual is outsourced jibberish. The problem is there are AF settings throughout all the menus and these setting and options also change/gray out, disappear according to how you've set the mechanical wheels on the top of the camera. Then also, certain things in AF are for stills only. It's just a mess.
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 09:04 AM   #8
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

Dan, I turned on the AF+MF feature, didn't know what it did, and forgot about it. Then later in Manual focus mode I forgot I was in MF and pushed the shutter thing halfway and got focus. It confused the heck out of me when I realized I was in MF mode and that happened. That is a nice feature!

Norm, I always had IS off on my Sony's. It has a negative effect on images when shooting on a tripod, which is how I most always shot. However with these cameras part of the appeal is the ability to walk around unobtrusively and capture great shots. Unfortunately bumps are greatly magnified with the camera due to it's small size.

I learned yesterday I cannot hold a 50mm Canon lens steady enough in most instances, steady enough to get usable images. The 20mm pancake is much more manageable.
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 12:44 PM   #9
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

Brian is right. The manual is complete garbage. There are so many AF controls they all get very confusing about what I am turning on or off or how it even works!!

I tried the switch in manual focus mode and changed the AF+MF setting on but not getting the same results as Jeff. In manual focus mode I cant get it to auto focus. I was however able to get Dan's suggestion to work in AFS mode, then get it to temporary switch to manual mode. Very confusing.

I really like this camera, but the manual is really really poor. BTW what picture setting is everyone using? Anything like Phillip Blooms recommendation for video -saturation - contrast etc.

Thanks!
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 12:49 PM   #10
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

Brian is right. The manual is complete garbage. There are so many AF controls they all get very confusing about what I am turning on or off or how it even works!!

I tried the switch in manual focus mode and changed the AF+MF setting on but not getting the same results as Jeff. In manual focus mode I cant get it to auto focus. I was however able to get Dan's suggestion to work in AFS mode, then get it to temporary switch to manual mode. Very confusing.

I really like this camera, but the manual is really really poor. BTW what picture setting is everyone using? Anything like Phillip Blooms recommendation for video -saturation - contrast etc.

Thanks!
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 03:16 PM   #11
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

Another thing to remember about AF on the GH2, it performs differently in standby than in Rec. It actually works better in Rec, it doesn't hunt, you can lock the focus, then reset to another target provided you're still recording..
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 06:19 PM   #12
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

Brian, how do you lock focus?
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Old April 3rd, 2011, 07:18 PM   #13
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

Hold down the shutter half way until it locks, then roll.
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Old July 4th, 2011, 01:18 PM   #14
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

I agree, one needs a decoder ring to understand this manual.

I'm still learning this camera. I bought two about three weeks ago.

If someone is up for writing a "hold your hand" sticky on how to setup the various focus modes, I imagine it would be well appreciated by many.
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Old July 4th, 2011, 03:38 PM   #15
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Re: GH2 question about focusing

I have a two-fold message about the manual. First to Panasonic, I can't believe you would hoist that excuse for a manual onto your customers. You have presented everyone with a dichotomy; you have a great camera and a terrible manual. Why is this so? Is it that you don't have any respect for other languages or do you just not care. My suggestion to you is redo the manual and publish it for download on your website. The goodwill that you will generate from this is huge and will pay off many time more than the cost of producing a good manual rather than the shoddy disgrace that you have now.

The second message is to independent tutorial and 'how-to' book publishers. This camera has a huge market footprint. It would be a popular and profitable opportunity for you to publish your own work to fill in the void that Panasonic has with their pathetic excuse for a manual.
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