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Thread started 17 Aug 2017 (Thursday) 15:56
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Sick of 5D mkIII auto focus issues

 
welshwizard1971
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Post has been last edited 2 months ago by welshwizard1971. 3 edits done in total.
Aug 19, 2017 12:13 |  #31

gjl711 wrote in post #18431681 (external link)
You haven't posted one that shows the problem. The picture you did post looked fine and the subject should be easy even for for the oldest Rebel. Sound like you've eliminated all the easy stuff. Could be that one of the AF parameters is not conducive to this shot. Might want to review your settings.This doc (external link) give a lot of good info on the different cases and how to set them up.

I have, but it's disappeared as Flickr is wigging out at the moment, hopefully it'll work soon.

Thanks for the link, always good to read that stuff again, always something you forget, but basically the settings are fine, may try another AF mode though ( done, trying 6 )

Ahhh, forgot I could assign the DOF button to be a programmable focus point, now done, that'll help occasionally :)


5DIII, 40D, 16-35L 35 ART 50 ART 100L macro, 24-70 L Mk2, 135L 200L 70-200L f4 IS
Hype chimping - The act of looking at your screen after every shot, then wildly behaving like it's the best picture in the world, to try and impress other photographers around you.

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welshwizard1971
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Aug 19, 2017 12:13 as a reply to post 18431687 |  #32

Cheers for this, good to know.


5DIII, 40D, 16-35L 35 ART 50 ART 100L macro, 24-70 L Mk2, 135L 200L 70-200L f4 IS
Hype chimping - The act of looking at your screen after every shot, then wildly behaving like it's the best picture in the world, to try and impress other photographers around you.

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Steinn
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Post has been edited 2 months ago by Steinn.
Aug 22, 2017 06:01 |  #33

I use AI servo 99% of the time on my 5DIII shooting birds in flight. It can be troublesome to pick the focus but when it's there it's really good! I use a 300/2.8L IS +1.4x most of the time.
The attached photo from thread starter shows both feet are behind and in front of focus area (face) and if not using f:16 it will always be OOF ??
My wife Tone Malm uses a 7DII and a 100-400L IS and getting far better results than me most of the time on small rapid objects!
Stein, Norway

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SereneSpeed
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Post has been last edited 1 month ago by SereneSpeed. 2 edits done in total.
Aug 22, 2017 10:36 |  #34

Your example photo shows WAY too slow a shutter speed. Look at the little guy's foot! I photograph my kids playing at 1/640th if I want sharp images. Sorry, but his foot is not "planted". He's running! :-)

That's not out of focus. There is a surprising amount of sharpness on his leading shoulder (considering the shutter speed). That is motion blur.

One thing to consider, at 70mm, f5 isn't a huge DoF for a moving child. Depending on your lens, you could have dropped to f4, or f2.8 and the increase in shutter speed would have yielded you sharper results. I'd bet your keeper rate would have been higher, even with a shallower DoF. And don't be afraid of ISO. That camera (I've had two) is pretty darn clean up to 3200. You just have to be more precise with your exposures.

With a narrower DoF (and suitable shutter speed) your focus accuracy will also be much easier to understand. The hair at the back of the head will be in focus when the eyes aren't, or the leading arm with be in focus not the face, or...

All that being said. It's a camera. You were in low, flat light (not a lot of contrast). Your camera needed to work HARD to track the kid! You need to help it any way you can. Brace your camera, move it smoothly, keep the AF point on one spot of your subject - a spot with as much contrast as is possible.

okay, all the technical (operator) stuff aside. As good as the 5D3 was I found that objects moving toward the camera were the hardest thing for the camera to track at close distances (like yours). I know people who can do it quite well with their 5D3's, but they have altered the case settings. I did not alter mine. For the type of shooting I did, I found Canons base settings to cover me well in most scenarios. But if you want to take photos with your kid running toward you, you will need to adjust the case settings to optimize.

Finally, the 5D3 was a seriously great camera for AF, but there are tricks and nuances that need to be worked with and around. For instance, that 5 point AF cross never worked for me. It seemed to lock on one of the outer points too easily. I always skipped it. I used either a single point or the 9 point square. The 9 point square (for me) tended to work best with subjects moving toward the camera as it seemed to prioritize whatever point was closest to the camera. Just make sure you keep the points on the face and not arms.

Have fun!

EDIT: I forgot. AI Servo all the way! :-)


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illmatik53
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Sep 02, 2017 22:25 |  #35

SereneSpeed wrote in post #18434069 (external link)
Your example photo shows WAY too slow a shutter speed. Look at the little guy's foot! I photograph my kids playing at 1/640th if I want sharp images. Sorry, but his foot is not "planted". He's running! :-)

That's not out of focus. There is a surprising amount of sharpness on his leading shoulder (considering the shutter speed). That is motion blur.

One thing to consider, at 70mm, f5 isn't a huge DoF for a moving child. Depending on your lens, you could have dropped to f4, or f2.8 and the increase in shutter speed would have yielded you sharper results. I'd bet your keeper rate would have been higher, even with a shallower DoF. And don't be afraid of ISO. That camera (I've had two) is pretty darn clean up to 3200. You just have to be more precise with your exposures.

With a narrower DoF (and suitable shutter speed) your focus accuracy will also be much easier to understand. The hair at the back of the head will be in focus when the eyes aren't, or the leading arm with be in focus not the face, or...

All that being said. It's a camera. You were in low, flat light (not a lot of contrast). Your camera needed to work HARD to track the kid! You need to help it any way you can. Brace your camera, move it smoothly, keep the AF point on one spot of your subject - a spot with as much contrast as is possible.

okay, all the technical (operator) stuff aside. As good as the 5D3 was I found that objects moving toward the camera were the hardest thing for the camera to track at close distances (like yours). I know people who can do it quite well with their 5D3's, but they have altered the case settings. I did not alter mine. For the type of shooting I did, I found Canons base settings to cover me well in most scenarios. But if you want to take photos with your kid running toward you, you will need to adjust the case settings to optimize.

Finally, the 5D3 was a seriously great camera for AF, but there are tricks and nuances that need to be worked with and around. For instance, that 5 point AF cross never worked for me. It seemed to lock on one of the outer points too easily. I always skipped it. I used either a single point or the 9 point square. The 9 point square (for me) tended to work best with subjects moving toward the camera as it seemed to prioritize whatever point was closest to the camera. Just make sure you keep the points on the face and not arms.

Have fun!

EDIT: I forgot. AI Servo all the way! :-)

I agree here. I have a 5D3 and I use a single focus point, which allows me to keep my focus on my target. If you choose the face and keep it there during the AI servo shot, you ought to notice that the face stays in focus almost the entire time. When you do multiples, as mentioned before, the focus tends to jump around. The camera can't predict exactly what you are expecting to have in focus. Limiting the AI's options by narrowing down the number of focus points to choose from, I believe, will yield much greater results.


EOS 5D MK3;16-35mm f/2.8 L; 24-70mm f/2.8 L; 85mm f/1.2 L; 70-200mm f/2.8 L; 580EX II;

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welshwizard1971
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Post has been last edited 1 month ago by welshwizard1971. 3 edits done in total.
Sep 03, 2017 03:27 |  #36

SereneSpeed wrote in post #18434069 (external link)
Your example photo shows WAY too slow a shutter speed. Look at the little guy's foot! I photograph my kids playing at 1/640th if I want sharp images. Sorry, but his foot is not "planted". He's running! :-) The foot I was referring to is on the ground, it has to be planted and not moving.

That's not out of focus. There is a surprising amount of sharpness on his leading shoulder (considering the shutter speed). That is motion blur. I was focusing on his face, but it's not out of focus as his shoulder is in focus?

One thing to consider, at 70mm, f5 isn't a huge DoF for a moving child. It's nigh on two feet, that's plenty to get his face in focus Depending on your lens, you could have dropped to f4, or f2.8 and the increase in shutter speed would have yielded you sharper results And an even smaller DOF?? . I'd bet your keeper rate would have been higher, even with a shallower DoF. And don't be afraid of ISO. That camera (I've had two) is pretty darn clean up to 3200. You just have to be more precise with your exposures.

With a narrower DoF (and suitable shutter speed) your focus accuracy will also be much easier to understand. The hair at the back of the head will be in focus when the eyes aren't, or the leading arm with be in focus not the face, or... Focus accuracy isn't an issue, great lens MFA'd etc, not focusing at all is the problem.

All that being said. It's a camera. You were in low, flat light (not a lot of contrast). Your camera needed to work HARD to track the kid! You need to help it any way you can. Brace your camera I was kneeeling down left supporting arm on my knee , move it smoothly I wasn't moving at all , keep the AF point on one spot of your subject I did, his face - a spot with as much contrast as is possible I was focusing on his face, I can't put B&W squares on his face :)

okay, all the technical (operator) stuff aside. As good as the 5D3 was I found that objects moving toward the camera were the hardest thing for the camera to track at close distances (like yours). I know people who can do it quite well with their 5D3's, but they have altered the case settings. I did not alter mine. For the type of shooting I did, I found Canons base settings to cover me well in most scenarios. But if you want to take photos with your kid running toward you, you will need to adjust the case settings to optimize.

Finally, the 5D3 was a seriously great camera for AF, but there are tricks and nuances that need to be worked with and around. For instance, that 5 point AF cross never worked for me. It seemed to lock on one of the outer points too easily. I always skipped it. I used either a single point or the 9 point square. You had trouble with the 5 point AF as it picked the outer points too often, so you chose the 9 point square, which has MORE outer focus points? The 9 point square (for me) tended to work best with subjects moving toward the camera as it seemed to prioritize whatever point was closest to the camera. Just make sure you keep the points on the face and not arms.

I've followed your advice and tried the 9 point square, and altered the AF settings, it was slightly better for tracking faces, but still a huge number of misses at very slow speeds

Have fun!

EDIT: I forgot. AI Servo all the way! :-)

Hiya, thanks for time but I'm a bit confused by what you've said, see my comments.


5DIII, 40D, 16-35L 35 ART 50 ART 100L macro, 24-70 L Mk2, 135L 200L 70-200L f4 IS
Hype chimping - The act of looking at your screen after every shot, then wildly behaving like it's the best picture in the world, to try and impress other photographers around you.

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welshwizard1971
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Post has been last edited 1 month ago by welshwizard1971. 3 edits done in total.
Sep 03, 2017 03:41 |  #37

Well, after following all the advice, changing the settings, using better light, using both the square and single point focus, experimenting with shutter speeds, here's the result, another kids running towards me shot SOOC as shown below. Not the best shot or settings as I was playing around with what worked and what didn't, but it humorously illustrates my dilemma. So, nice DOF, kid entirely in focus ( same kid, and at 1/250 ) , lovely, except I was focusing on the guy on the left :) And as can see below that, I have no issues with the focus on side to side movement or fast action, this was a sequence of 6 I think, all spot on.

Maybe I'll just have to accept I'm expecting too much from the camera with things coming towards me, but with little kids, they're not exactly going 100 MPH, so seriously disappointed it's an issue at all...

IMAGE: https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4363/36995257325_16222d1836_b.jpg
[IMAGE'S LINK: https://flic.kr/p/Yn9n​7e] (external link)

IMAGE: https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4342/36547931310_858ef7b458_b.jpg
[IMAGE'S LINK: https://flic.kr/p/XFBG​EJ] (external link)

5DIII, 40D, 16-35L 35 ART 50 ART 100L macro, 24-70 L Mk2, 135L 200L 70-200L f4 IS
Hype chimping - The act of looking at your screen after every shot, then wildly behaving like it's the best picture in the world, to try and impress other photographers around you.

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john ­ crossley
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Sep 03, 2017 05:03 |  #38

welshwizard1971 wrote in post #18443334 (external link)
Well, after following all the advice, changing the settings, using better light, using both the square and single point focus, experimenting with shutter speeds, here's the result, another kids running towards me shot SOOC as shown below. Not the best shot or settings as I was playing around with what worked and what didn't, but it humorously illustrates my dilemma. So, nice DOF, kid entirely in focus ( same kid, and at 1/250 ) , lovely, except I was focusing on the guy on the left :) And as can see below that, I have no issues with the focus on side to side movement or fast action, this was a sequence of 6 I think, all spot on.

Maybe I'll just have to accept I'm expecting too much from the camera with things coming towards me, but with little kids, they're not exactly going 100 MPH, so seriously disappointed it's an issue at all...

QUOTED IMAGE
[IMAGE'S LINK: https://flic.kr/p/Yn9n​7e] (external link)

Actually focused on the little guy on the RIGHT.


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welshwizard1971
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Sep 03, 2017 05:04 |  #39

That's the point, I was focusing on the guy on the left, that's how out of focus it was on that occasion....


5DIII, 40D, 16-35L 35 ART 50 ART 100L macro, 24-70 L Mk2, 135L 200L 70-200L f4 IS
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john ­ crossley
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Sep 03, 2017 05:07 |  #40

welshwizard1971 wrote in post #18443350 (external link)
That's the point, I was focusing on the guy on the left, that's how out of focus it was on that occasion....

If you look at the image in DPP the focus point is clearly on the little guy on the right who is clearly in focus.


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Sep 03, 2017 06:16 |  #41

dan.k78 wrote in post #18431687 (external link)
If it helps at all, my mark III was doing similar things, so I sent it in. Turns out my AF assembly was out of position (their wording). They repaired it and now my images are nice and sharp. Might be something to consider.

I agree with this. My 6D had focusing issues as well. I sent it to Canon, got it back less than a week and it was much better. I then sold it LOL!


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welshwizard1971
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Sep 03, 2017 06:46 |  #42

john crossley wrote in post #18443351 (external link)
If you look at the image in DPP the focus point is clearly on the little guy on the right who is clearly in focus.

???? That's it I'm sending it in :)


5DIII, 40D, 16-35L 35 ART 50 ART 100L macro, 24-70 L Mk2, 135L 200L 70-200L f4 IS
Hype chimping - The act of looking at your screen after every shot, then wildly behaving like it's the best picture in the world, to try and impress other photographers around you.

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Left ­ Handed ­ Brisket
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Sep 03, 2017 07:12 |  #43

john crossley wrote in post #18443349 (external link)
Actually focused on the little guy on the RIGHT.

welshwizard1971 wrote in post #18443350 (external link)
That's the point, I was focusing on the guy on the left, that's how out of focus it was on that occasion....

No way this is camera error. Literally zero chance considering John C points out that the focus point is on the subject in focus.

Further, regarding 1/250 being fine in this photo and thus "proving" that 1/200 should have been fine in the page one example ... you have to consider that the subject is 50x as large in the page one example. That makes any motion blur 50x more noticeable.

1/200 is not fast enough for running kids in natural light when they occupy most of the frame. There really is no arguing this point. Someone earlier said 1/640, I tend to agree with that number.

I'm not sure what to tell you about focusing other than I get better results with my 6D. Part of it might be user error, part of it might be the camera.


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welshwizard1971
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Sep 03, 2017 07:37 |  #44

Perhaps you're right, I was playing around with off centre spot focus points going from portrait to horizontal,locking and unlocking the transition, maybe I was playing around too much lost track of where I was, but even now thinking back I'd bet good money money I was focusing on the lad on the left. However, playing around did prove useful for something else, setting the DOF preview to automate the centre AF point seems to have been an experiment well worth playing with, that's proving interesting.

However, your point about them being closer and magnifying motion blur isn't something that's occurred to me, and I can totally see your logic there, blindingly obvious now you've said it. Just looking back through my pics, the success rate does seem to drop as they get closer, time for more experiments, need to get this sorted if poss....


5DIII, 40D, 16-35L 35 ART 50 ART 100L macro, 24-70 L Mk2, 135L 200L 70-200L f4 IS
Hype chimping - The act of looking at your screen after every shot, then wildly behaving like it's the best picture in the world, to try and impress other photographers around you.

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illmatik53
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Sep 03, 2017 07:54 as a reply to welshwizard1971's post |  #45

It sounds like you've consistently been using the same lens each time, correct? Have you also tried with different lenses? What if you used a simple test of rolling a tennis ball towards you on a table and see how well it tracks that first. Then maybe roll two or three at different times and try to focus just on one tennis ball. Use some variables and consider them controls. Perhaps one of the lenses you're using is one that has electronic focus, such as the 85 1.2L II. The focus on that lens alone can be iffy at times, let alone motion coming towards you. I've manually focused faster than it can auto focus many a time, both when I had my 5D Classic and my 5D MKIII. Or perhaps one of your lenses has IS and you can test with/without IS since I assume you're shooting hand-held. *shrug. Just some simple ways to test before sending off your camera for a couple weeks.

If it happens on all lenses, it could be the body.
If it only happens on one lens it could be the lens, lens AF (if it has the electronically assisted feature).
If it happens on some of your lenses but not all, it could likely be the age of the lenses and their versions. Perhaps it's time to get some of the lenses serviced.

I've had my 5DMKIII since launch, then again I bought it overseas in Japan, but I haven't faced the same issues as you. I've photographed children many times, especially when I photographed school events and it had no issues from my 16-35 all the way to my 70-200. Then again, I didn't expect every motion shot coming towards me to be in focus. I shot with the expectation that some were going to be out of focus. The point brought up earlier about side to side motion is quite true since the DOF isn't changing as drastically as when an object is moving towards you. Perhaps shooting knowing the camera's quirks will help you shoot better instead of trying to force the gear to do what you see in your mind, may be a better approach. In that case, you'd be focusing more on setting up the shot instead of focusing on the camera not doing what you want it to do. Perhaps it's time to experiment with other brands too?

Just some thoughts. If you've already decided to send it in, hope all works out well for you. I've been shooting since the 10D, and while Canon does have it's issues (what camera doesn't?), I think maybe I've just tempered my expectations, which led to me being more content. *shrug

Good luck with the camera and AI servo/AF!


EOS 5D MK3;16-35mm f/2.8 L; 24-70mm f/2.8 L; 85mm f/1.2 L; 70-200mm f/2.8 L; 580EX II;

flickr - http://www.flickr.com/​photos/marylandmatt/ (external link)

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Sick of 5D mkIII auto focus issues
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