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Frequent Contributor
Posts: 77
Registered: ‎03-11-2014

Only "Evaluative" exposure uses the focus point.

[ Edited ]

I shot a Little League baseball game (8-year-olds).  I had shifted the focus points group to the left so I could have focus on the batter, yet plenty of space in front of him for capturing the incoming ball.  (and I use a quick tap on the DOF button to shift back to the center group after the hit).


A lot of the shots were overexposed Smiley Sad so I re-read the manual again and found out why.  Unless you're on "Evaluative" metering, the exposure areas are based upon the center of the frame, NOT where the focus is - AND - exposure is derived at the instant the shutter is tripped.  Since the center of the frame was aimed at the dugout (where it was darker), the batter was overexposed.


So I learned another lesson!  Yippee!  (I wasn't using "Evaluative" because it was dusk, under the lights)

From what I read, I assigned the "*" button to AE. That allows me to position the center of the viewfinder over the subject then press & hold the “*” while I re-frame to position the left-shifted focus points group over the subject and half-press the shutter. Once I tap the DOF button to reposition the focus point(s) to center, I release the “*” and allow the shutter activity to establish the exposure. It works just fine in my living room – next games (4 of them) are on Saturday.


(Before you start in on me, I'm @ f/2.8 with my 70-200, and about 12-15 ft from the batter.  My DOF is somewhat less than 6", so I can't lock focus/exposure and re-frame - the kids bob & weave too much.) 


"Photography is a money-sucking black hole, and I'm approaching the event horizon"
Honored Contributor
Posts: 5,289
Registered: ‎06-25-2014

Re: Only "Evaluative" exposure uses the focus point.

Well, it's not as though that behavior was any sort of secret. The primary alternative to "Evaluative" metering is called "Center-Weighted" for a reason.


Actually, I might even suspect that you were inadvertently using "Spot" metering before you switched. Even Center-Weighted metering should have noticed that the dark dugout was atypical of the scene.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
Posts: 12,237
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Only "Evaluative" exposure uses the focus point.

One thing I think most new people believe is changing a focus point or metering mode will enable the camera to get multiple things in focus or multiple exposures in a single frame.  Not matter how you focus or meter just one exact spot is perfect.

I suggest you select the main most important thing and concentrate on it. However you set the camera to accomplish that.  Let the rest fall where it may.


I almost never take my camera off of single center focus point (and I have 45, 39 cross-point ).  I do switch the metering modes a bit but center weighted is probably my most used.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
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