The breathtaking simplicity of manual focusing: don't let AF tech get in the way

Laowa MFT Argus 25mm f/0.95 APO
(Image credit: Laowa)

You don’t need us to tell you that modern AF systems are complicated. You’ve got AF-S vs AF-C, AE-L, AF-ON, face, eye (left eye or right eye) AF, animal eye AF, AF tracking, AF point/zone/auto-area-AF selection, contrast vs phase detect AF, touch AF, touch shutter AF, AF thumbsticks, AI subject-recognition AF and even direction-of-eye-gaze AF. And all this, just to focus on a thing.

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Rod Lawton

Rod is an independent photography journalist and editor, and a long-standing Digital Camera World contributor, having previously worked as DCW's Group Reviews editor. Before that he has been technique editor on N-Photo, Head of Testing for the photography division and Camera Channel editor on TechRadar, as well as contributing to many other publications. He has been writing about photography technique, photo editing and digital cameras since they first appeared, and before that began his career writing about film photography. He has used and reviewed practically every interchangeable lens camera launched in the past 20 years, from entry-level DSLRs to medium format cameras, together with lenses, tripods, gimbals, light meters, camera bags and more. Rod has his own camera gear blog at but also writes about photo-editing applications and techniques at