How To Autofocus in the Dark? Photography Question Of The Week

Focusing your camera in the dark is darn near impossible, whether you use manual or autofocus. Here are some tips to get perfect focus even when there’s not a lot of light to work with.

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4 replies
  1. Dave Macias
    Dave Macias says:

    Hello Josh,
    I will be backpacking to Evolution Valley this year the first part of August and would like to know if you use ND Filters?
    Would you recommend a variable ND filter or a Solid ND filter, which one do you use?

    • Pro Photo Tips
      Pro Photo Tips says:

      Hi Dave,

      Awesome! I have yet to visit Evolution Valley myself but I’ve heard such amazing things about it. To answer your question, I do use ND filters, both solid and graduated filters. The grads are great to hold a bright sky in check with the foreground, while the solid ND filters are very useful for extending your shutter speed for long exposure effects. Personally I prefer the 4×4 drop in filters because they’re easier to work with. ProGrey and NiSi are great brands. I don’t love variable ND filters because they’re imprecise can cause unexpected effects if you dial them too far.

      Cheers, and have fun out there!


      • Mandar Ajgaonkar
        Mandar Ajgaonkar says:

        Hi Josh,

        Do I need to buy LEE filter holder for LEE ND filters? And NISI for NISI etc?
        Or I can buy LEE holder and put any filter on it?

        Is there any cheap but good filter holder? (LEE holder is around 80$).

        • Pro Photo Tips
          Pro Photo Tips says:

          Hi Mandar,

          Most filter holders will work with other filters. I regularly put NiSi and Progrey filters in my Lee holder, and vice versa. In my experience you get what you pay for so I wouldn’t recommend buying a cheap filter holder because it will probably break sooner or have features that are aggravating. All the best,



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