ILCE-1

Focus Setting Guide

Focusing on an animal’s or bird’s eyes

The procedure for shooting by focusing on the eyes of an animal or bird is introduced below.
There are two shooting methods. Use either method in accordance with the shooting conditions. (The eyes of an animal or bird can be detected only when shooting still images.)

1. When shooting images by pressing the shutter button halfway down (or pressing the AF-ON (AF On) button)

Main usages

  • When you want the camera to focus on a subject as intended even if you are shooting an image whose composition is rather complex, for example, focusing on the eye of a specific animal or bird.
  • When you want to focus on a subject with higher priority on the eye but want to continue focusing using [Focus Area] in case detecting an eye is difficult.

2. When shooting images by assigning [Eye AF] to a custom key

Main usages

  • When you want to rely on the camera function to focus temporarily on an eye within the whole range of the monitor, regardless of the setting for [Focus Area].

1. When shooting images by pressing the shutter button halfway down (or pressing the AF-ON (AF On) button)

Procedure for setting the camera

  1. MENU→ (Focus) → [Face/Eye AF] → [Face/Eye Prior. in AF] → [On]
  2. MENU→ (Focus) → [Face/Eye AF] → [Face/Eye Subject] → [Animal] or [Bird]
  3. Turn the focus mode dial and select AF-S (Single-shot AF), AF-C (Continuous AF), or DMF (Direct Manual Focus).
  4. MENU→ (Focus) → [Focus Area] → [Focus Area] → desired setting.

    If you want to detect an animal’s eye from the widest range, set [Focus Area] to [Wide] since the camera focuses on the eye positioned within the focus area.
    If you want to limit the range for detecting an eye, set [Focus Area] to [Spot] or [Zone].

Procedure for shooting still images

  1. Point the camera so that the animal’s eye to be focused on are within the focus area.

    When [Focus Area] is set to [Zone]

  2. Press the shutter button halfway down to focus on the animal’s eye.*
    A green eye detection frame is displayed over the eye once an animal’s eye is detected and focusing is performed.

    * You can also use the custom key function to focus on an eye by pressing the custom key to which you have assigned [AF On].

  3. Press the shutter button fully down.

Hint

  • When the face of an animal or bird is small or there are many animals or birds on the screen, set [Focus Area] to [Spot] to make it easier to detect and focus on a specific eye.

Note

The camera may not be able to detect an eye depending on the subject or shooting environment. For details, refer to the section “About Eye Detection.”

The link between Tracking and [Face/Eye AF]

If you set [Face/Eye AF] to focus on eyes beforehand, a focusing frame will automatically appear around any detected eye while tracking a subject.

The procedure for setting the focusing on the eye in the condition where [Face/Eye Subject] is set to [Animal] is provided below.

  1. Tracking distant subjects
  2. If an animal eye is detected when the subject comes closer, a focusing frame will automatically appear around the detected eye.

Switching the eye to detect (only during still image shooting)

* When [Face/Eye Subject] is set to [Bird], you cannot switch the eye to be detected.

To set the eye (left or right) to be detected in advance, select MENU → (Focus) → [Face/Eye AF] → [Right/Left Eye Select]. You can also switch the eye to be detected in the following operation.

Switching with a custom key assigned to [Switch Right/Left Eye]

* [Switch Right/Left Eye] operations are possible when you are not pressing the shutter button halfway down.

When [Right/Left Eye Select] is set to [Right Eye] or [Left Eye], you can switch the eye to be detected every time you press the custom key to which you have assigned the [Switch Right/Left Eye] function.

When [Right/Left Eye Select] is set to [Auto], you can temporarily switch the eye to be detected by pressing the custom key to which you have assigned the [Switch Right/Left Eye] function.

Note

When [Right/Left Eye Select] is set to [Auto], the temporary left/right selection is cancelled if you perform the following operations, and the camera returns to automatic eye detection mode.

  • Pressing the center of the control wheel
  • Pressing the center of the multi-selector
  • Stopping pressing the shutter button halfway down.
  • Stopping the pressing of the custom key to which [AF On] or [Eye AF] is assigned
  • Pressing the MENU button

Switching by touch

You can switch the eye to be detected by setting [Touch Func. in Shooting] to [Touch Tracking] in advance and touching around the eye on the monitor.

Touch the periphery of an eye that you want detected on the monitor.

The eye to be detected switches.

Switching by touch is possible when you are not pressing the shutter button halfway.

To cancel touch operations, press the center of the control wheel or touch the icon in the upper right of the monitor.

2. When shooting images by assigning [Eye AF] to a custom key

Procedure for setting the camera

  1. After selecting MENU→ (Setup) → [Operation Customize]→ [Custom Key Setting], select a button to which you want to assign the function, and then set [Eye AF].
  2. MENU→ (Focus) → [Face/Eye AF] → [Face/Eye Subject] → [Animal] or [Bird]
  3. Turn the focus mode dial and select AF-S (Single-shot AF), AF-C (Continuous AF), or DMF (Direct Manual Focus).

Shooting still images

  1. Press the Custom Key to which the [Eye AF] function is assigned.
    A green eye detection frame is displayed over the eye once an animal’s eye is detected and focusing is performed.
  2. Press the shutter button while holding down the Custom Key.

Note

The camera may not be able to detect an eye depending on the subject or shooting environment. For details, refer to the section “About Eye Detection.”

About Eye Detection

Even when the subjects have cat-, dog-, or bird-like faces, the camera may not be able to detect an eye depending on the shooting environment such as the type of animal or bird, the direction of its face, and the conditions of the scene (e.g. two or more animals or birds moving around).

Examples of easy-to-detect subjects’ eye

When [Face/Eye Subject] is set to [Animal]

Cat-like face

Dog-like face

Size and direction of a subject where its entire face such as an eye or nose is seen properly
(Example:Face shown in front view)

Size and direction of a subject where its entire face such as an eye or nose is seen properly
(Example: Face shown sideways)

When [Face/Eye Subject] is set to [Bird]

Face like that of small birds

Face like that of eagles or hawks

Entire face of the subject is seen properly and it is not too small

Direction of face where the shape of an eye and beak is seen properly

Examples of difficult-to-detect subjects’ eye

When [Face/Eye Subject] is set to [Animal]

The subject animal has a spotted or striped face and body

When shooting in dark places or animals with dark hair

Animals that do not have cat- or dog-like faces

When two or more animals are moving around

When [Face/Eye Subject] is set to [Bird]

Cases where an eye or body outline of bird is not sharp
(Example: Patterns of body feathers make it difficult to identify eyes)

Cases where an eye or body outline of bird is not sharp
(Example: Dark environment, black body feathers)

Cases where an eye or body outline of bird is not sharp
(Example: Colors or patterns of body feathers that are similar to the background)

Birds with a face not like those of small birds or eagles/hawks
(Example: Eye shown in front)

Birds with a face not like those of small birds or eagles/hawks
(Example: Birds with long neck and big beak)

Birds with a face not like those of small birds or eagles/hawks
(Example: Birds with complicated ornamental feathers or comb on the head)

Scene where many birds have flocked together

Hint

  • If the face of an animal or bird is out of focus, the camera may not be able to detect the eye. In that case, adjust the focus on the face once. After that, the camera can detect the eye more easily.

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