Viewfinder "Magnification" Options

JK1231JK1231 Posts: 24Member
edited January 2013 in Nikon DSLR cameras
I've been having increasingly worsening vision problems for the past few years and was recently diagnosed with a vision disorder that makes my eyes slow the change to differing light levels. This has left me with a couple issues that are making it increasingly harder to frame and shoot my cameras (D7000 & D600).

The first is that I can't see live view in daylight -- it all looks completely washed out. Plus, I find it nearly impossible to fine focus manually using live view. I know that there are some hoods for use with the LCD -- but I wear glasses and have never had much luck with any hood I have to use with glasses.

What I'd really like is some means of using the viewfinder. With it, I can take off my glasses, and by adjusting the diopter, I can get a reasonably in-focus view. However, the image is so small, I have a hard time with fine focus of the small image. I know there are a couple of magnifiers that fit on the viewfinder (and I have the DK21M), but they tend to crop the image significantly and/or only provide a center focus magnification.

So, what I think I'm looking for is something that magnifies the entire viewfinder, that you can hold up to your eye, and has a good diopter adjustment.

A couple of other points: I want something that I can use w/o a tri/mono pod, and I'd like something that I can use in the same manner as the viewfinder, as I like the additional stability I get from the camera resting against my faces (vs holding it at arm's length to see the live view screen).

Any suggestion here? I'm also not looking to spend hundreds of dollars and would prefer something that works on both a D7000 and D600.

Thanks in advance!



  • Those who say it can't be done, should not interrupt those doing it!
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,481Moderator
    Hi JK1231, welcome to the forum.

    I am sorry to read of your vision problems, that must be a PITA for you. I do wonder though why you are not happy with using all of your focus points or the centre focus point and recompose with your auto focus system? It isn't clear from your post why you really need to manually focus?
    Always learning.
  • JK1231JK1231 Posts: 24Member
    Hi spraynpray,

    I was in the old forum... just now getting around to migrating to the new one.

    Why the need to manual focus? Because I keep seeming to find situations where the autofocus simply doesn't. For example, I was trying to shoot a picture of a not-to-distant building and landscape shrouded in light fog and the camera refused to focus. Others recent ones include: a statue that was backlight, a flower closeup, and a scene reflecting off water. It simply seems like every time I try shooting, I have at least one or two cases where autofocus simply fails, or focuses slightly in front of or behind what I want in focus.

    Thus, manual focus.

    I hope this clarifies my need.

  • MikeGunterMikeGunter Posts: 543Member
    Hi JK1231,

    Getting old is a bitch ain't it?

    I have a magnifier that I use on the Live Viewfinder that, like you said, only shows so much of the finder, but I also magnify the Viewfinder's view using the + on the Button control to the left, and move the portion shown, using the multi selector switch (around the OK button) to see the part I need to focus.

    Furthermore, I can recommend the Giottos Schott glass as a replacement for the viewfinder's cover. It really helps to see what you're getting.


    You can also let the 'green' dot in the penta prism guide you, too. It lights up when your AF-A (or other mode) has hit it's focus. My point is that if you are using a single mode (such as a AF-A) in the penta-prism), and a single focus point (what I generally do, when the auto focus is correct a beep will sound (if so set) and a green light will show in the penta prism viewfinder (assuming you can see it).

    Stay young and my very best,


  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,398Moderator
    edited January 2013
    I use the Hoodman. It is adjustable for focusing on the screen and will allow live view to be seen in daylight.

    One can devise various methods to hold it on...rubber bands or other...
    Post edited by Msmoto on
    Msmoto, mod
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,481Moderator
    OK, thanks for the explanation JK, it does help. There are some buy solutions for you above, and you could also set your camera to release on focus only and move the centre focus point to the best part of the subject - use the AE lock facility while you recompose? But I am sure you know how to drive your camera...

    Good luck!
    Always learning.
  • MikeGunterMikeGunter Posts: 543Member
    Hi Msmoto,

    Of course, sometimes I'm like the Scarecrow, and forget things like brains...

    The cheap viewfinder is a Hoodman knockoff like Opteka like this:

    image which has a rubber bandy thing to attach to the camera, I usually have the camera on a tripod and hold it to the finder.

    My best to all,

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