New camera, shutter not releasing

edited January 2016 Posted in » Nikon D3300 Forum
Hi Everyone,

I just bought a new Nikon D3300. For some reason, the shutter is not releasing. I'm brand new to photography, so I'm pretty sure I'm doing something wrong. Can someone help me? It has taken a few photos, but I can't seem to figure out why it will sometimes take a photo and sometime not. Thank you for any help you can offer.



  • edited January 2016
    @jfrodahl, this camera is set to "focus priority" when auto focus is enabled. What this means is that the shutter will not release unless the camera has achieved focus.

    It helps if you have the "beep" enabled, which will inform you when it has locked onto focus. If you are using an AF setting that begins at a specific single point (recommended over multi-point for accuracy) make sure that you know which point is being used. Center it with the [OK] button. In difficult light, try to find something with visible contrast or edges on which to focus.

    To make sure that the camera itself is working correctly, you can briefly switch the lens to "M" and try the shutter. For testing it is not really important whether you get good focus or not. If the camera is working, it should switch to "release priority" when on M, and the shutter will always release.

    If for some reason, this does not occur, post back and we'll continue troubleshooting.
  • Thank you so much. I did have it on the auto setting. Could poor lighting be a reason for the camera's difficulty achieving focus?
  • Yes, poor lighting is quite possibly the cause. Although the camera does pretty well, it cannot always work in dim light, especially with the kit lens which is not as bright as some.

    When you're in auto area mode, the camera uses all nine of its focus points, and decides which to rely on. Although it usually will find something, if it's dim, and nothing bright falls under one of those points, it will fail. In dim light, if you switch to a single point (use single servo if the object is standing still), you can alter your aim a little so that the single point falls on a focusable point. If you need then to recompose, you can do so while you hold the shutter button half way down. Focus will remain locked on what you chose, and the camera should fire.
  • Thank you so much. I find it so kind when one stranger helps another on these forums. I will try again tomorrow, using your advise. Have a wonderful evening.
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