Show nikon focus point

As the title says, it would be great to be able to visualise nikon focus point, as Nikon NX Studio allows to do.
This is some handy checking feature.

The big problem with showing any focus point metadata is that it is stored in the MakerNotes section and is manufacturer dependant. NX Studio provides it but only because they know where to look for it.

For DxO to provide it, they would have to be continually looking for and updating a database of every camera manufacturer’s metadata fo every new model that was released.

Just to be clear about that: Aperture could always show the focus points if they were saved into the RAW! But of course, a 4 year dead app might have some other tricks in it’s sleeve … And there were less cameras around back in it’s day.

this request comes up every now and then…

However, even if PL would (correctly) extract the data regarding the focus point from the RAW files, that would not necessarily mean that this was really the point of focus. Just think about “focus and recompose” (which I, personally, use quite often), or a target that has moved further after the moment when the focus was picked.

So, in the real world, displaying the focus point is rather useless in many cases. (While I agree that it would sometimes be interesting to see, though…)

I did search for “focus point” before posting and nothing came up. Don’t know what key word would give successful result …

I know that and use focus and recompose too. Even NX Studio gives “wrong” result when doing this. It couldn’t happen an other way. Just have to know it when using this feature.
But anyway this would be andy very often.

Wouldn’t it be possible to DxO team to ask to nikon to provide easy to use datas ?
They test so much cameras and lenses, they could insert this in this process if they had easy to use datas.
I know other domains (3d gpu rendering for instance) where developers successfully get datas from manufacturers to easily update their software.

But maybe a dream here …

I searched for autofocus and found this one, which is still open and can be voted for:

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Good for you. Don’t know what happened for me.
Is “focus point” working for you ? It is in the title you found.

Good question - I hadn’t tried it myself. It turns out that if I search for focus point, with or without quotes, I get a bunch of good results. If I filter only “PhotoLab - Which feature do you need?” results, I still get good results, with the one I linked to at the top. I guess searching is hit or miss depending on the steps you take. What I do is click on the magnifying glass icon at the top of the page, enter a search term, then click on Advanced to select only the relevant “Which feature do you need” category. I find this to be reliable.

Ok. Maybe I have to better see how research works. It’s not the first time I can’t find subjects I already read (not this one, didn’t have read about it before).

Do you think it is likely that Nikon would be willing to give proprietary information to DxO for no cost? Do you believe DxO would be willing to go to the trouble of providing this data for only Nikon cameras? They would then be under pressure from users to provide it for every camera model from every manufacturer supported by PhotoLab.


It doesn’t hurt to ask. :grin: And this seems to be a popular feature request.

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JFTR, additional to “Displaying Focus Points” above:

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I don’t think (maybe I’m wrong) being able to read AF point position in raw file is a strategic information.
I think (maybe I’m wrong) Nikon could understand that being able to use their raw as efficiently as possible, showing here they have a plus, could benefit them.
So I think it could be possible, if diplomatically explained, they accept.

And what I’ve seen from other kind of softwares, collaboration generally profit to those who do.

Nikon offers a SDK free. Nikon Imaging | SDK Download


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Well, back in the day Aperture did show the focus points of a couple of Nikons. In RAW at least. But not all Nikons. As a digital beginner at that time, I found it very helpful when using 3D tracking to see where (in theory) the camera was focusing on. It was also interesting to see, how big or small the AF points appeared: In D5100, it was only 9, but smaller than the D7000/7100 or D800/D810 with their 39 /50 something AF points which where so big that I sometime shad to ask myself “and where in this big rectangle is the focus measured now?” Even a Canon G11 did show AF points (or better: large rectangle fields) and also a cheap Lumix µ 4/3, but not Pentax. And all Fujis. All two of them :grin:

Lateron in D750, D7100, P7800, P900: not always AF (and on some bodies not at all) points visible. If someone knows someone at Apple, ask them if Nikon didn’t provide them anymore or if the cameras didn’t write them into the RAWs anymore (ok, P900 doesn’t write RAWs) .

Sometimes the pattern was shown, but no rectangle was red = manual focus? So it’s also a check “AF did work/was not engaged”.

I think it could be helpful for beginners or for owners of new cameras to get some confidence quicker.

If one is really interested in the focus points one can use ViewNx or CaptureNx-D, the free raw converter of Nikon.
It has no practical value, only educational value.


That says something about your view of education. :roll_eyes: :rofl:

Seriously, at home looking at the AF points might be a bit too late to re-shoot and for somebody setting his camera to f/11, AF and recompose, it sort of works without knowing too much. I keep forgetting, I’m in a forum where “patchworkarround” software (for all the stuff PL can’t do) is the standard and not the exception :thinking: Sorry, starting Aperture to check for the AF-points display maybe made me a bit home-sick. For what exactly do we need all this progress and updates? Just kidding’…

Well, it is available as part of ExifTool, as is the focus point info for a number of cameras. This page includes the Nikon info (there are loads further down including points available and points used for dynamic AF modes)

Absolutely Mark. And this is the problem. Not forgetting that camera manufacturers are prone to issuing firmware updates that can change things.

These have now been replaced by NX Studio

You have hit the nail on the head. Most of the time, looking at AF points is simply an exercise in mental torture, thousands of miles from where you took the shot and realising you got it wrong. Who cares where the focus point was? Suffice to say it was in the wrong place, which is easily seen because the intended subject is blurred. Also, as someone else said, if you focus then reframe with BBF, the focus point will been the wrong place.

Moral of the story - get it right in the camera - note to self :crazy_face:

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Or it can help when not being sure if AF is working well.
When you shoot with razor sharp dof, you can often have doubts.
This is the point.
When you come back from fast moving subjects shoots and see you have very fewer keepers than usual, this is a way to see if you did wrong or maybe your camera did wrong.
When you should for fine tuning AF, the same (dslr) : you generally shoot 5 time the same correction, have to do it for a range of corrections, and for different distances; this is very precise and takes time; and when back to your screen having to compare them you sometime have some interrogations. And sometime you have to do several time the test for being sure.
Being able to have clear responses when looking at the result is sometime better than doing test again to be sure.
And opening nikon software is a bad solution. They are sooo slooow.
My experience of course, but I know for sure it’s not only mine.

Anyway I would prefer DxO work on big working color space or extended masking and layer system than on this kind of detail.

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