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Sony A7s3 doesn't display distance of focus point in video mode!

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    Originally posted by rudo_fr View Post
    Doug, they are several situations, for exemple, when you shutdown camera, focus can change. This information can help you to understand where is your focus when your screen is not as good as viewfinder and your are outdoor, in fact you can see where is your focus and approximatly confirm that is right. I think it is a mininum to know where is the focus on screen because sometime you can't read this information on lense because it is too high.
    Have you actually tried using the numbers that way on any Sony camera?

    I think you are overestimating the accuracy and repeatability of the focus distance readout. For example, if you happen to note that the focus is at 17' before you power down, and then you simply refocus the lens so that the display says 17' feet again after you power back up, I wouldn't count on the subject being in focus. It might be, but it just as easily won't be. The calibration of the lens isn't that accurate, and also you have no way of knowing whether the focus was really 17.2', 17.9' or whatever. A one-foot increment is not precise enough for tack sharp focus.

    Why not just focus the right way with peaking and be done with it? I absolutely guarantee you that I could re-focus with peaking faster than you could dial in a certain number -- and I wouldn't even have to remember to memorize that focus number before I shut down in the first place. I would never trust anything but peaking on my cameras.

    BTW, I've been working on a wildlife project this fall with my FX6 and Sony 200-600mm where I DID want to have the focus distance displayed so I could get a general idea of how far the animals were from the camera. And I can tell you that there were many times that I'd focus on A . . . focus on B . . . and go back to A but the number shown would be very different the second time. You can't trust those numbers. I was also shooting some test footage with several different Sony lenses from the same camera position and the same subject to show the differences in composition between different focal lengths, and there was no consistency of the focus distance between lenses. One lens would say 20' and the next one might say 24' and hte next one something else.

    You are wishing you had a feature that I'll bet you wouldn't use if Sony gave it to you in a firmware update. But I agree, it is strange not to have it in both photo and video modes.
    Last edited by Doug Jensen; 11-08-2021, 03:29 PM.
    Doug Jensen, Sony camcorder instructor


      Thank you Doug for your feedback, which does not surprise me. this is why I was talking about an approximate distance, it is certain that it is not worth a picking it is just to have a rough idea where the focus is. For example I put in autofocus (face detection) and switch to manual focus that gives me the distance of the focus on this lens. On last A7s3 face detection is verygood and i can trust it.
      It is still crazy that we cannot have the return on screen of the calculated focus distance. This information is only on my batis lens.....not the screen.
      Have you actually tried using the numbers that way on any Sony camera? yes I tried 1,2,3 but it's only the photo modes that work (PASM). This problem dated since my first alpha R2.
      Sony has made good progress, but there are details like this that seem small but are huge when you can't display them. Obviously when we don't need this info we deactivate it and we don't think about it anymore. This is not my case on my FS7.
      Last edited by rudo_fr; 11-08-2021, 06:00 PM.