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D80 AutoFocus

Discussion in 'Nikon Chat' started by SXH, Sep 6, 2017.

  1. SXH

    SXH Well-Known Member

    This may be a silly question, but...

    I came into a D80 recently. It has an AF-S kit lens.

    Both have a focus motor built in. And both have an On/Off switch for the auto-focus.

    Question is, should one of them be set to Off (body) while the other is On (lens)?

    I've been using it with both set to On, which seems to work, and was wondering if this could cause any problems.
  2. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    sounds like a read the manual question but I'd think the AF mechanisms are completely different and mutually exclusive so it probably matters not as you have found.
  3. SXH

    SXH Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I did read the manual. Couldn't find anything in the D80 manual, or the lens leaflet. And did a certain amount of Googling. Found nothing.

    That's why I asked here.
  4. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    This: http://www.nikonusa.com/en/learn-an...-nikkor-lens-type-is-right-for-your-dslr.html. if I read it right, says the D80 is compatible with older AF nikkor lenses which are mechanically driven. I presume the body AF on/off controls the body motor for this but I couldn't find any link that says or shows this AF on/off button. I only found reference to an AF/manual selector which is maybe what you meant. The link says only some AF lenses with built in motors have actual AF on/off selectors so I expect AF/Manual in the body is the primary control for AF and the camera figures out what type of lens is connected. It follows that, if the lens has an AF on/off control that should be left to ON. Very confusing.
  5. SXH

    SXH Well-Known Member

    Confusing is le mot juste, as we say down the ol' Frog and Nightgown.

    I've had another look through the manual, which says:
    1. The body is fully compatible with AF-S lenses (though it is ambiguous about VR).
    2. If the lens has an A/M switch, set it to A. But then, in another section, it says set both to M for Manual, so I assume both switches have to be at the same setting. Though I am going by my interpretation of a couple of small drawings for part of that info!

    Basically, I seem to have an answer to my question. But if I had ever wrote documentation that badly, my boss would have made me re-write it. I can see why there are so many third-party guides to Nikon cameras!

    Thanks for your help.
  6. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    The screw drive coupling in the camera body is spring loaded and engages with it's counterpart on a lens which does not have a focus motor. Since those that do and manual focus lenses have no such screw coupling but a flat mount that depresses the coupling in the body, I assume that must have some means of communicating to the camera that the motor should be disabled. I have never set the body mounted switch on the camera other than to use manual focus with AF or AF-D type lenses.
  7. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    Just leave both at AF and get on with it. The D2 and D3 have the same arrangement.
    SXH likes this.
  8. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    The body will be compatible with VR - my old D50 which predates it is quite happy with VR

    As far as using manual focus with AF-s lenses goes I just use the on-lens switch to access manual focus and leave the body switch as is. With non-AF-s lenses that use the screw drive from the body manual focus is set on the body switch. I do have a vague recollection that I once used my 50mm AF-D lens in manual mode on my D50 with the body switch at manual and then had trouble with my AF-s 18-70 refusing to AF until I remembered to turn the body switch back to auto so possibly the body switch fully disables the AF system but I may be wrong.
  9. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    I think the switch actually retracts the screw drive coupling in the body to allow the focus ring to travel freely and also disables the motor in lenses with built-in motors.

    The VR is even compatible with a few of the later film camera bodies, including the F80 and F100.
  10. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    Certainly does on the D3

    I think it works on the F5
  11. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    As a late film body it is likely, I don't own one so I can't check.
  12. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    No batteries in either of mine so I didn't check either.
  13. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    Out of interest I checked this over the weekend and my memory is not as vague as I thought. :) When mounted on either my old D50 or the slightly more modern D7000 the AF-S drive is indeed disabled if the cameras AF/MF switch is set to manual even though the lens' AF is set to on - it looks like the camera AF switch completely deactivates the AF system though the rangefinder function still works.
  14. AndyTake2

    AndyTake2 Well-Known Member

    Just leave the camera settings to auto, but control whether you want auto focus or not ON the lens.

    Remember, it doesn't matter what you set the camera to, if the lens doesn't support it, it is t going to happen.
    The switch on the lens physically disables the motor, so even if your camera wanted to control it, it couldn't.

    The lens would send the relevant info to the camera, so there wouldn't be an issue.
    I used a D700 for years (it also has a screw coupling, like all the pro range) but have only ever owned AfS lenses. I never once even looked for the auto focus/manual focus in the camera firmware
    SXH likes this.
  15. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member


    As far as I know only very recent cameras that are compatible with the new AF-P lenses have the option to set the AF/MF option via the menu system. Older stuff like mine is strictly mechanical switches only...
  16. SXH

    SXH Well-Known Member

    But if the AF is turned off on the camera, won't it stop sending focus info to the lens? I mean, the focusing is done in the camera by checking the image phase/contrast/whatever from the sensor, isn't it? So the camera needs to tell the lens when to stop focusing, and if its AF is turned off...
  17. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    Correct, as I said if the AF switch on the camera is set to Manual then the lens does not focus regardless of whether it's set to AF or not. From my test over the weekend it's clear the camera's own AF control, whether mechanical or electronic I imagine, disables the AF system completely.

    With AF-S lenses the simple solution is turn AF off at the lens and ignore the camera's control...
  18. SXH

    SXH Well-Known Member

    Ah, got you. Thanks.

    Will try it out again later.
  19. IvorETower

    IvorETower Little Buttercup

    I traded my D80 in a few years ago but the requirement was that the body and lens should both be set to AF "on" for auto-focus to work correctly.... that's what I set on my newer Nikon bodies (used D300s, D7000) and lenses

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