Why I'm Shooting Full Manual Now

Left image -- $1300 Nikon 24-120 ED VRII; Right image -- $50 used 105mm manual focus lens manufactured September 1977.

I could drone about my D750's super-advanced 91,000 pixel matrix metering system and a litany of other things that have improved since I started shooting digital 20 years ago. Here's a very simple example why I've been increasingly eschewing most auto-'everything' modes.

The photo on the left was shot with my $1300 Nikon 24-120mm, a lens that features extra low dispersion glass, nano crystal coating, vibration reduction, etc.

The photo on the right was shot with my 38 year-old 105mm manual focus lens. It's a hunk of glass surrounded by a hunk of metal. It can be had for under $100 used.

The photo on the left was shot with the auto 91k metering system that auto-focuses down to -3ev. The photo on the right was manually focused with my completely shot, blind-as-a-bat 45 year-old eyes.

In fairness to the 24-120, this is a 100% crop of a very small section of the photo. Front/back focus and focus shift issues can be micro-adjusted. Modern lenses are worth the money and I would have a hard time living without them. But when time and speed aren't an issue and deliberate skills can be brought to the fore? Manual. Every time.