Hi! the lens won't stop trying to focus. it's working fine, when you press down the button halfway, it focuses and when press down more, it takes the shot. but when it's idle, it continuously tries to focus and has this ticking sound. is this just a simple setting problem i can change?
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You did not say which camera body you are using, but you probably have three different auto-focus modes on you camera. You might be using the wrong one.
The modes are as follows:
AF-A Mode: Camera automatically selects single-servo autofocus when AF-A subject is stationary, continuous-servo autofocus when subject is moving. Shutter can only be released if camera is able to focus.
AF-S Mode: For stationary subjects. Focus locks when shutter-release button AF-S is pressed halfway. Shutter can only be released when in-focus indicator is displayed.
AF-C Mode: For moving subjects. Camera focuses continuously while AF-C shutter-release button is pressed halfway. Photographs can be taken even when in-focus indicator is not displayed.
First off, try gently turning the focus ring on your lens while it is on auto focus mode (DO NOT force it). Sometimes a minor bump on the lens can cause the focus ring to come off the tracks. Try that and see if the lens start auto focusing again. I find that this solves the issues a lot of the time. If that doesn't give you any results then you'll need to take your lens to an authorized Canon service center for repairs. Hope this helps!
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This issue can occur in the following circumstances:
The subject is too close to the camera lens
Incorrect camera settings
Incorrect camera operation
Follow the steps below to help prevent taking pictures that appear blurry, out-of-focus or distorted.
If the camera has both an auto focus and manual focus mode, make sure it is set to auto focus.
Make sure there is enough lighting to allow the camera to focus on the subject.
Make sure the camera settings are set appropriately.
When taking close-up or macro-type shots, ensure the subject is not closer than the minimum focus distance of the lens. Also, if the camera has a zoom option, set it to the W (wide-angle) position.
If you have a fast-moving subject and the camera has a Program AE mode with a higher shutter speed (such as Sports action), make sure it is enabled. Also, if the camera has an ISO control, set it to a higher setting.
If your camera has a SteadyShot/anti-blur function, ensure it is enabled.
Aim the camera at the subject.
Press the shutter button halfway down.
Pressing the shutter button halfway down allows the camera to focus automatically. A flashing green indicator will be visible in the LCD or viewfinder. When the indicator stops flashing, focusing is finished and the camera is ready to take the picture.
Some camera models have a Monitoring AF setting that can be selected which allows the camera to focus without the need to hold the button halfway down. Consult the instruction manual of the camera for information whether or not this is applicable for your model.
Try checking your settings for the type of shot you are taking and for the type of focus...... type of shot is the dial on the top, and then: 1) menu, metering and also check your autofocus mode 2)menu, autofocus; try the single autofocus, it might be set to continual
Also, you could try updating the firmware in your camera. You do this through the Nikon website.
There are four focus modes: S-AF (Single auto focus), C-AF (Continuous auto focus), MF (Manual Focus), and S-AF/MF (Simultaneous mode).
(SINGLE Auto Focus): Focusing is performed once when the shutter button is pressed halfway.
C-AF (CONTINUOUS Auto Focus): The camera repeats focusing while the shutter button is pressed halfway.
(MANUAL FOCUS): The function allows you to manually focus on any subject while looking through the viewfinder.
SIMULTANEOUS USE of S-AF mode and MF mode: You can fine-adjust focus manually by turning the focus ring after AF is performed in the S-AF mode.
If the camera is having a difficult time auto-focusing, you can try the FOCUS LOCK feature. This feature allows you to focus on another subject roughly the same distance from you and then move the camera back to the intended subject and take the picture without losing focus. First, turn the camera on and locate the Autofocus Target Mark in the center of the LCD. The AF Target Mark resembles an open and close bracket [ ]. Position this AF Target Mark on a subject roughly the same distance away as the subject the camera is having trouble focusing on. Press the shutter button halfway enabling the lens to focus. While holding the shutter button halfway down, aim the camera at the original subject and press the shutter button all the way down.
If the camera is having a difficult time auto-focusing you can try the FOCUS LOCK feature. This feature allows you to focus on another subject roughly the same distance from you and then move the camera back to the intended subject and take the picture without losing focus. First, turn the camera on and locate the Autofocus Target Mark in the center of the LCD. The AF Target Mark resembles an open and close bracket [ ]. Position this AF Target Mark on a subject roughly the same distance away as the subject the camera is having trouble focusing on. Press the shutter button halfway enabling the lens to focus. While holding the shutter button halfway down, aim the camera at the original subject and press the shutter button all the way down.