Adjusting the Viewfinder Focus

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Perched on the top-right edge of the viewfinder is a tiny black knob, labeled in Figure 1-4. Officially known as a dioptric adjustment control, this knob enables you to adjust the magnification of the viewfinder to mesh with your eyesight.

Display Off sensor

Viewfinder adjustment knob Autofocus point

Display Off sensor

Viewfinder adjustment knob Autofocus point

Canon Rebel T1i Example Viewfinder
Figure 1-4: Use the little knob to set the viewfinder focus for your eyesight.

Adjusting the viewfinder to your eyesight is critical: If you don't, scenes that appear out-of-focus through the viewfinder may actually be sharply focused through the lens, and vice versa.

Follow these steps to adjust your viewfinder:

1. Remove the lens cap from the front of the lens.

2. Look through the viewfinder and concentrate on the focusing screen shown on the right side of Figure 1-4.

The focusing screen is the collective name assigned to the group of nine autofocus points that appears in the viewfinder — the little squares with the dots inside. I labeled one of the little guys in Figure 1-4. (The circle that surrounds the center autofocus point is related to exposure metering, a subject you can explore in Chapter 5.)

3. Rotate the viewfinder adjustment knob until the autofocus points appear to be in focus.

Don't worry about focusing the actual picture now; just pay attention to the sharpness of the autofocus points.

If your eyesight is such that you can't get the autofocus points to appear sharp by using the dioptric adjustment control, you can buy an additional eyepiece adapter. This accessory, which you pop onto the eyepiece, enables further adjustment of the viewfinder display. Prices range from about $15-$30 depending on the magnification you need. Look for an adapter called an E-series dioptric adjustment lens.

One other note about the viewfinder: See that little black window underneath the viewfinder — the one labeled Display Off sensor in Figure 1-4? When you put your eye up to the viewfinder, the sensor tells the camera to turn off the monitor display, saving you the trouble of doing the job yourself. If the monitor doesn't turn off automatically, the upcoming section "Setup Menu 1" tells you how to fix things; see the information related to the LCD Auto Off feature.

Keep in mind, too, that with the T1i/500D, you can opt to use the monitor instead of the viewfinder to frame and preview your shots. This feature is called Live View shooting. Because many of the functions connected with Live View shooting are similar to those you use during picture playback, I cover both uses of your monitor together in Chapter 4. Chapters 5 and 6 spell out some additional details of setting exposure and focus in Live View mode.

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  • Dillon
    How to fix focus on viewfinder canon t1i?
    9 years ago
  • valtteri
    How to adjust viewfinder focus on canon 5d?
    3 years ago
  • michael perez
    How can i change the viewfinder to the lcd on canon camera 500d?
    4 months ago

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