417 – An Unexpected Rain

Originally I wanted to write about a new and fantastic feature of the D300, the possibility to calibrate the autofocus for lenses that would otherwise front-focus or back-focus. I mounted the lens that would probably be most susceptible to focus errors, the Sigma 20/1.8, set up a test stage with books, and made a series of test shots. Well, I don’t particularly mind that the combination was spot-on for every distance, but for demonstration purposes it would have been interesting.

What’s the theory? The D300 can remember focus adjustments for 12 lenses, and these must have a built-in CPU. Maybe that is used for identification purposes only, I don’t know and Nikon didn’t tell. Most manual focus lenses don’t have a CPU, but obviously wouldn’t profit from AF adjustments anyway, most autofocus lenses have one, and certainly so anything built in the last 10 years.

Nikon does not recommend setting AF adjustments for lenses that don’t need it (Doh!), and they warn that by using these adjustments, a lens can stop focusing to infinity.

Mount the lens that you want to adjust. From the setup menu, under “AF fine tune”, you can select one of the 12 storage slots and then enter an adjustment value between -20 and +20, 0 being neutral. Positive values move the focus plane away from the camera, negative … you get it. Fine tuning must be enabled to be used, by default it is “OFF”.

You can “name” the storage slot with a two digit number (initially between 01 and 12), they recommend using the last two digits of the serial number. How silly is that? There are already several places in the menus where we can enter text, so using the same text editor gadget wouldn’t have been too hard, would it? Anyway. That’s how it is, and that’s the end of today’s D300 report. Let’s move on to the the images.

In the morning, when I went to work, I had some minutes without rain, and in that time I shot this image of some graffiti. You see, I go to great lengths to avoid having Ted running out of his favorite motive 🙂

The rest of the time it rained, so I was forced to use an umbrella and the all-weather cover of my Lowepro Slingshot 300 AW. It only stopped raining after I had arrived.

At work I immediately was the target of jokes, and they recommended me a job as rain dancer. Well, funnily enough, although I left work in the afternoon under a clear, blue sky, it again began to rain after only 10 minutes. I was less than amused.

Both images, the graffiti and the Image of the Day, were shot with the Nikon 50/1.8 at f1.8. What a wonderful lens that is.

The Song of the Day is “An Unexpected Rain” from Melissa Etheridge’s 2007 album “The Awakening”. Fantastic stuff, highly recommended. Hear a live performance on YouTube.

2 thoughts on “417 – An Unexpected Rain”

  1. Your style is exposed here for all to see. I haven’t read anything about your technique today, preferring to remove my gear head hat and rather to enjoy how you are making the machine that separates you from the image become seemingly invisible.

    When all is done, what we do is more about archers than arrows. This is superb capture which only a superb archer could bag.

    I like everything about it. Tell me more about how it makes you feel. And how you wanted me to feel… us to feel… as you created it through first click to final sweep of pixels.I’m growing more interested in why you did, than how. I can do most of the how… but not most of the why.


  2. I’ll be back to art today. This writing about my new camera was an idea to attract visitors. I own something, that many paople want to know about. I do so, along with maybe 100.000 others, but most people don’t write about it, so I guessed I have information attractive for a much broader public than the one that I usually attract. Well, I was right. Yesterday I had 100 unique visitors in one day. OK, it’s not the 30.000 that The Online Photographer attracts in a good day, but for me it was an absolute high.

    I shall come back to the D300 once or twice the next week, but that will be it. It’s a wonderful piece of engineering and certainly the most capable camera that I’ve ever had, but it’s still only a camera.

    This image? It’s a little bit like the archetypical cowboy riding into the sundown, the end of a story. We can’t say which story and if it’s a happy end, but from the way he holds his hand, I suppose it can’t have been that bad 🙂

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