Though autofocus is not possible with live video in any current true DSLR (the Panasonic GH1 promises this) it is possible to use pull-focus effects with a little planning. We now have a Nikon D5000 – it won the competition for best fine image detail when comparing results frame by frame with Canon’s nominally higher resolution rival. It was also a very good deal, £629 inc VAT with an 18-55mm VR kit lens and a SanDisk Ultra II 8GB SDHC card plus Crumpler Messenger Boy 2500 bag thrown in free (from Jacobs). You Tube sample –
The Alpha 900 – and indeed the Alpha 700 with new firmware v4 – offer a three-bracket sequence at a 2 stop interval to enable HDR blending, usually from static tripod-mounted views. At the Edinburgh Alpha 900 launch, I braced myself firmly against an open window, leaning out over the street, and tried an example hand held.