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Add a back button focus control on Nexus housings

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#1 Dupsbear


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Posted 10 August 2011 - 08:35 AM

Why do you need a back button focus switch?

There are several reasons for achieving quick focus, but my main reason is so I can quickly refocus while shooting video with my D300s Nikon camera.

The D300s will focus while shooting video in the tripod mode, IF you use the back button focus. However, Nexus has not seen fit to install a back button focus on their current housings.
Therefore, if you are shooting video without back button focus access, you must stop recording>turn off live view>refocus with the shutter lever>turn live view back on>turn video back on. This process is a real hassle and takes away precious time while action is happening.

The video explains how to modify a Nexus brand D300s housing, so users can have back button focus and can refocus WHILE shooting video.

If you don't want to watch the video or need the process written down, read below. The script below is read in the video.

We are going to change the function of the auto exposure lock located at the end of the red arrow so that the button will now be used for back button focus.
First, we open the housing and take off the black fork, using an Allen wrench.
When the fork is removed, the control shaft will be visible.
In this case, I found an old Ikelite rubber end from a control shaft that worked great for my contact pad. I had to trim off about 1mm of the base of the pad so the pad would not continually make contact with the back focus button. Trim just a little at a time, so you have better control of the pad size.
ANY rubber pad will work or you can make one out of any soft material that won’t scratch your camera body.
Once you have the pad installed and cut to size, you must access your menu to change the function of the auto exposure button to back button focus.
On the D300s, the settings that need to be changed are in the custom settings menu.
Select Controls, then Assign the AE-L/AF-L button
Select AE-L/AF-L button press
Use the multi-button switch to scroll down to select AF-ON and press the OK button.
NOTE—Your menu may not be exactly like the one on the D300s, but the Nikon commands should be similar.
Now, you are ready to go and ready to change your focus distance while shooting video with your DSLR.

Happy focusing and shooting,