Focusing and zooming the tens

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Like any modern camera, digital or film, yours offers autofocusing capabilities, which you can explore in detail in Chapters 2 and 6. But with some subjects, autofocusing can be slow or impossible, which is why your camera also offers manual focusing. The process is quick and easy: You just turn the focusing ring on the lens until your subject comes into focus. To try it out, take these steps:

1. Locate the AF/MF switch on the side of the lens.

Figure 1-3 shows you the switch as it appears on the Rebel XTi/400D kit lens. The switch should be in a similar location on other Canon lenses; if you use a lens from another manufacturer, check the lens instruction manual.

2. Set the switch to the MF position, as shown in the figure.

Don't try to move the focusing ring with the switch set to the AF (autofocus) position; with some lenses, doing so can damage the lens.

3. While looking through the viewfinder, twist the focusing ring to adjust focus.

The focusing ring is at the far end of the lens barrel, as indicated in Figure 1-3.

If you have trouble focusing, you may be too close to your subject; every lens has a minimum focusing distance. (See Chapter 6 for more tips on focus issues.) You may also need to adjust the viewfinder to accommodate your eyesight; see the next section for details.

If you bought a zoom lens, a movable zoom barrel lies behind the focusing ring, as shown in Figure 1-3. To zoom in or out, just move that zoom barrel forward and backward.

The numbers on the zoom barrel, by the way, represent focal lengths. I explain focal lengths in Chapter 6. In the meantime, just note that when the lens is mounted on the camera, the number that's aligned with the white focal-length indicator, labeled in Figure 1-3, represents the current focal length. In Figure 1-3, for example, the focal length is 55mm.

Zoom barrel Focal length indicator

Focusing ring

AF/MF switch

Zoom barrel Focal length indicator

Focusing ring

AF/MF switch

Figure 1-3: Set the focusing switch to MF before turning the manual focus ring.

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