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How to de-activate focus lock feature on Nikon lenses

eric m , Sep 20, 2006; 02:25 a.m.

Hello all,

I have a Nikon 70-200 VR lens and an older Nikon ED 80-200 2.8 AF-S Silent Wave Motor lens. My problem is I cannot de-activate the focus lock feature on the (older) 80-200 AF-S lens. I bought the lens used so I don't have a manual to it and I can't download from Nikon site either. I sometimes have this problem with my VR lens also. I have the manual for the VR lens but it is very vague on this topic. Can anybody tell me how to activate AND de-activate this feature. It focuses for the first 10-15 shots and then does not focus anymore. It's driving me nuts. Any help greatly appreciated.



Lilly W , Sep 20, 2006; 03:46 a.m.

Confusing. Autofocus Lock (AF-L) is a function of the camera, not the lens, unless one of the Focus Lock buttons on the lens is depressed (round, rubber buttons between Focus and Zoom rings on 80-200 AFS; in front of focus ring on 70-200 VR) and, once released, also releases the lock.

<It focuses for the first 10-15 shots and then does not focus anymore.> We'll need a bit more info to sort this one...subject at same distance, which body (bodies), settings, anything else you care to add? Give us your whole scenario re: the situation and what it is you want to do. Hate to answer a question w/ more questions.

Shun Cheung , Sep 20, 2006; 07:37 a.m.

Eric, you need to clarify your question.

The 80-200mm/f2.8 AF-S does have 3 AF lock buttons on its barrel. After it focuses, if you press on one of those AF lock buttons and the focus will lock at that distance until you release the button. If those buttons are sticky, you might have some unintentional effects. However, that does not sound like the problem we are discussing here.

Also on the barrel closer to the mount, the 80-200 AF-S has two switches, one for M (manual focus) and M/A (MF and AF) selection and the other switch limits the focusing range to from 2.5 to infinity or to the entire range.

eric m , Sep 20, 2006; 02:09 p.m.

Hi Everyone,

Thanks for your help, guys. I had the problem using the lens with a Nikon D1x,a D1h and a D70. I used various settings, shutter priority, aperture, etc... on both cameras. Also different exposure settings. I also used a 28-70 2.8 Sigma with all three cameras and had no problem. The shutter releases but the auto focus will not work. If the camera is off for a while it works fine (actually it is more like 30 shots but then after that its very erratic). But I never touched the focus lock buttons. If I point at something that is NOT in focus it will not fire unless I press on the focus lock buttons. It still won't focus but it will release the shutter. If you guys could help it would be great but I'm beginning to suspect that something is wrong with the lens. I didn't pay anything for the lens, its a company lens so I can return it but it takes a while to get a replacement, so its not that much of a loss (although I did pay for the VR lens). I was hoping it was a matter of adjusting some setting on the camera/lens. Hope thats enough info. Again, any help is appreciated.


Lilly W , Sep 21, 2006; 12:31 p.m.

It appears to be a problem with the lens. That it behaves erratically is strange. You could try cleaning the electrical contacts but my guess is that it needs a thorough once-over from a qualified tech.

Aaron Linsdau , Sep 21, 2006; 01:21 p.m.

You have to have the lens and the camera is auto mode. If not, it won't auto focus. However, it appears you are having lens problems. Try the old contact cleaning technique first.

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