Focus shift, which automatically varies focus over a series of shots, is used to take photos that will later be combined using focus stacking to create a single image with increased depth of field. Before using focus shift, choose a focus mode of AF-S or AF-C and a release mode other than Self-timer (E).

Selecting Focus shift shooting displays the options below.

  • Start: Start shooting. The camera will change the focus distance by the selected amount with each shot.
  • No. of shots: Choose the number of shots (maximum 300).
  • Focus step width: Choose the amount the focus distance changes with each shot.
  • Interval until next shot: The time between shots, in seconds. Select 00 to take photos at up to about 5.5 fps.
  • First-frame exposure lock: If On is selected, the camera will lock exposure for all images at the setting for the first frame.
  • Peaking stack image: If Create is selected, the camera will employ focus peaking to create a black-and-white preview stack that can be used to check focus after shooting.
  • Silent photography: Select On to silence the shutter during shooting.
  • Starting storage folder: Highlight options and press 2 to select or deselect. Choose New folder to create a new folder for each new sequence, Reset file numbering to reset file numbering to 0001 when a new folder is created.

Focus Shift Photography

Before Shooting

Before beginning focus shift photography, take a test shot at current settings and view the results. To ensure that shooting is not interrupted, be sure the camera battery is fully charged. If in doubt, charge the battery before use or use an AC adapter and power connector (available separately).

  1. Select Focus shift shooting.

    Highlight Focus shift shooting in the photo shooting menu and press 2.

    Focus shift options will be displayed.

  2. Adjust focus shift settings.

    Adjust the following settings:

    • No. of shots: Choose the number of shots.

      Highlight No. of shots and press 2.

      Choose the number of shots and press J.

    • Focus step width: Choose the amount the focus distance changes with each shot.

      Highlight Focus step width and press 2.

      Press 4 to reduce the focus step width, 2 to increase. Press J to proceed.

      Because depth of field is reduced at short focus distances, we recommend choosing smaller focus steps and increasing the number of shots when photographing subjects close to the camera.

    • Interval until next shot: Choose the interval between shots.

      Highlight Interval until next shot and press 2.

      Choose the interval (in seconds) and press J.

      To ensure the correct exposure when using a flash, choose an interval long enough for the flash to charge.

    • First-frame exposure lock: Enable or disable exposure lock.

      Highlight First-frame exposure lock and press 2.

      Highlight an option and press J.

    • Peaking stack image: Enable or disable Peaking stack image.

      Highlight Peaking stack image and press 2.

      Highlight an option and press J.

    • Silent photography: Enable or disable silent photography.

      Highlight Silent photography and press 2.

      Highlight an option and press J.

    • Starting storage folder: Choose starting folder options.

      Highlight Starting storage folder and press 2.

      Highlight options and press 2 to select or deselect. Press J to proceed.

  3. Start shooting.

    Highlight Start and press J. Shooting starts after about 3 s. The display turns off and the camera takes photographs at the selected interval, starting at the focus distance selected at the start of shooting and progressing out toward infinity by the selected focus step distance with each shot. Shooting ends when the selected number of shots has been taken or focus reaches infinity. To end shooting before all shots have been taken, press the shutter-release button halfway or press the J button between shots.


To prevent the loss of definition that can occur at smaller apertures, choose an aperture with an f-number lower than f/11–f/8.

During Shooting

During focus shift photography, the release mode indicator in the control panel will turn off and the memory card access lamp will flash. Regardless of the option selected for Custom Setting c3 (Power off delay) > Standby timer, the standby timer will not expire during shooting. Note that changing camera settings while focus shift photography is in progress may cause shooting to end. Shooting will end if focus is adjusted during shooting.

Peaking Stack Image

During playback, a p icon appears on photographs shot with Create selected for Peaking stack image, indicating that a focus stack preview can be displayed by pressing the i button and selecting Display peaking stack image. The areas displayed in white will be in focus when the pictures are stacked. Focus stack previews can only be viewed on the camera used to create them.

Focus Shift Photography

If you are using a flash, choose an interval longer than the time needed for the flash to charge. If the interval is too short, the flash may fire at less than the power needed for full exposure. Focus shift cannot be combined with some camera features, including movie recording, time-lapse movies, bracketing, the self-timer, long time-exposures (bulb or time photography), HDR (high dynamic range), multiple exposure, and interval timer photography. Note that because the shutter speed and time needed to record images may vary from one shot to the next, the time between the end of one interval and the beginning of the next may vary. If shooting cannot proceed at current settings (for example, if shutter speed is set to Bulb or Time), a warning will be displayed.

Silent Photography

Selecting On for Silent photography disables some camera features, including:

  • ISO sensitivities of Hi 0.3 through Hi 2
  • Flash photography
  • Exposure delay mode
  • Flicker reduction