Capture One’s Live View Focus Meter (LVFM) tool provides visual confirmation of the optimal point of focus when manually focusing with the Phase One XF/645DF+ cameras and IQ3/2 series backs. The LVFM is also compatible with a number of Canon, Nikon, and Sony models that adopt contrast-detection AF. It has some additional capability with the Phase One iXG Camera System.
The tool has a horizontal white-colored main-meter with a secondary orange-colored fine-focus meter that is used to verify the optimum point of focus. By placing a focus-area in the viewer, Capture One measures the contrast and provides data to the main and secondary meters. A fine-focus meter is also embedded within the frame of each focus-area, allowing you to concentrate on the image in the Viewer rather than the tool itself. Up to three focus-areas can be set in the viewer, each one contributing data to a separate meter. The one you use to determine the point of focus is up to you, however, you can use the others to check focus at other points of interest in the Viewer.
Although the LVFM provides high precision, it is recommended to be used with static subjects only and that the camera is placed on stable support (e.g., a sturdy tripod, studio-stand or copy stand). A high-quality, ideally double-shielded interface cable (FireWire 800 or USB 3.0, as necessary) is essential for reliable operation. If in doubt, use the cable supplied with the camera, or refer to the camera manufacturer's user manual.
- Click on the Live View (movie camera) icon in the Camera tool to open the Live View window.
- Select the camera’s manual focus mode and focus approximately on the subject using the focus ring of the lens.
- Activate the Focus Meter tool by clicking on the Focus Meter icon in the Live View Focus Meter tool or in the toolbar.
- To position a focus-area, click on the point of interest or subject in the viewer of the Live View window. To check focus simultaneously at different points within the frame, up to three focus-areas can be set. Attempting to set a fourth will prompt a message to close or move one of the existing focus areas.
- Adjust the position of the focus area on the subject by either clicking inside the focus area frame and dragging it or by clicking and dragging the focus areas top-bar.
- For improved accuracy, focus areas may be resized to fit the subject by grabbing the black frame at the side, bottom or corner. To delete a focus area, click on the X icon in the top right corner.
- Each focus-area has a built-in fine-focus meter within its frame as well as a corresponding horizontal focus meter located in the LVFM tool. This tool can be removed from the toolbar, repositioned, and resized for your convenience.
- Slowly turn the lens' focus ring while observing the meter carefully. The main (white-colored) meter peaks at optimal focus (or close to it), leaving an orange-colored marker at the high point. Located in the main meter’s frame as well as the focus area's frame, a secondary orange-colored fine-focus meter is used to verify the measurement. Please avoid zooming in or out, resizing, and moving a focus-area or covering the lens at this stage as the meter will be reset.
- Continue to adjust the lens' focusing ring with care until the secondary fine-focus meters reach their maximum point. When the optimal focus is achieved, the outer orange fine-focus meters enclose both the frame of the focus-area and the white bar of the main meter, which then changes color to orange. Note that the main meter's bar will not change color under certain (i.e. low-contrast) conditions, however, the best-possible focus is achieved when both bars no longer continue to rise.
- If both bars fall, the point of maximum focus has passed. Please return to Step 8 and repeat the actions.