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FORUMS General Gear Talk Changing Camera Brands
Thread started 17 Aug 2017 (Thursday) 15:56
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Sick of 5D mkIII auto focus issues

 
welshwizard1971
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Aug 17, 2017 15:56 |  #1

So having convinced myself to stay with Canon, I went out with the family today to a public garden, took loads of photo's, and looking at them now about 80% of them are out of focus.

I've MF'd all my lenses, bought software to do it, pre made focus targets, bought the best glass out there, yet my keeper ratio is just garbage. At one point today I was pointing the camera at my lad who was running towards me, BBF activated, central 5 AF points selected and square on his chest, he stopped about 8 feet from me, and the auto focus did nothing for about 5 seconds, I was just sitting there thinking WTF looking at the out of focus image doing nothing, until he turned around then it kicked in, to take another out of focus shot. I shouldn't be in the position of spending £8K on gear to have rubbish shots so many times, It's downright embarrassing if the missus is looking over my shoulder when I'm going through the shots on the PC at home. The ones that are in focus are great, but when they're so rare, what's the point......

So back to looking at mirrorless to get away from the out of focus shots, yes they're slower to focus, but I'd rather wait for focus to hit and get one good shot than 10 out of focus shots from my DSLR....


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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saea501
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Aug 17, 2017 16:05 |  #2

welshwizard1971 wrote in post #18430240 (external link)
So having convinced myself to stay with Canon, I went out with the family today to a public garden, took loads of photo's, and looking at them now about 80% of them are out of focus.

I've MF'd all my lenses, bought software to do it, pre made focus targets, bought the best glass out there, yet my keeper ratio is just garbage. At one point today I was pointing the camera at my lad who was running towards me, BBF activated, central 5 AF points selected and square on his chest, he stopped about 8 feet from me, and the auto focus did nothing for about 5 seconds, I was just sitting there thinking WTF looking at the out of focus image doing nothing, until he turned around then it kicked in, to take another out of focus shot. I shouldn't be in the position of spending £8K on gear to have rubbish shots so many times, It's downright embarrassing if the missus is looking over my shoulder when I'm going through the shots on the PC at home. The ones that are in focus are great, but when they're so rare, what's the point......

So back to looking at mirrorless to get away from the out of focus shots, yes they're slower to focus, but I'd rather wait for focus to hit and get one good shot than 10 out of focus shots from my DSLR....

Unless I missed it, you don't mention that you had it on AI Servo. If he was running toward you and not in servo its not going to keep focus, which I know you know.

If this is as bad as you say.....something's wrong. Obviously that hardware should return a high keeper rate. But then with 5 focus points activated it's possible that it grabbed something else to focus on.


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welshwizard1971
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Aug 17, 2017 16:09 |  #3

Sorry yes, 'AI servo', always is with the kids. I never use 'AI focus', it's either 'One Shot' for static stuff or 'AI servo'. It was so obviously bad I took ten minutes out to go through all the AF settings, but nope, nothing amiss....

I'll post some examples tomorrow....


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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arthurbikemad
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Post has been edited 3 months ago by arthurbikemad.
Aug 17, 2017 16:10 |  #4

Maybe look at your case scenarios, move the shutter priority to focus. My old 5D3 was an awesome camera, personally I would never change from such a camera to a mirrorless, unless it's an A9 ;) anyway I now shoot with a Mk4, it's not a massive leap up from the Mk3, the Mk3 is a supurb action camera, I used to get fast action shots with my Mk3 daily, never heard anyone slate the AF so poorly, perhaps it's a duff.




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mystik610
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Aug 17, 2017 22:55 |  #5

This is precisely the reason I'll never shoot on a DSLR again....the critical focus accuracy just isn't there and it has nothing to do with settings. Separating the image sensor and the AF sensor is always going to have some deviation.

I stopped using DSLR's even when my best option at the time was MF on the original a7R, because even that was more consistently accurate with focus peaking.


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gjl711
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Aug 17, 2017 23:18 |  #6

mystik610 wrote in post #18430541 (external link)
This is precisely the reason I'll never shoot on a DSLR again....the critical focus accuracy just isn't there and it has nothing to do with settings. Separating the image sensor and the AF sensor is always going to have some deviation. ....

With MFA, this is no longer true. With today's cameras you can adjust the lens to be in perfect focus.

OP, if your getting a 80% miss rate, I would evaluate your technique before looking at the hardware. THe 5DIII AF is pretty decent and 80% sounds over the top.


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mystik610
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Post has been last edited 3 months ago by mystik610. 5 edits done in total.
Aug 18, 2017 00:27 |  #7

gjl711 wrote in post #18430552 (external link)
With MFA, this is no longer true. With today's cameras you can adjust the lens to be in perfect focus.

OP, if your getting a 80% miss rate, I would evaluate your technique before looking at the hardware. THe 5DIII AF is pretty decent and 80% sounds over the top.

My last DSLR was the 5DIII, and even with MFA it was very much an issue. It depends on what your tolerance to critical focus errors are....as a portrait shooter who often uses fast apertures on long lenses, it was a big deal for me.

The problem with MFA is that it assigns a single value to a deviation the varies depending on a number of different factors...subject distance, color temperature of ambient light, the part of the frame (because the deviation isn't necessarily the uniform across the frame). The Sigma dock goes a step further by allowing you to assign different MFA values for different focus distances, but it still doesn't fully correct the underlying issues that exist when you stick a mirror in between the image sensor and the AF sensor. Like the OP, I used to obsessively MFA lenses using FoCal and or the dottune method, and the MFA value varies depending on the shooting environment. It's a frustrating and time consuming process that never fully corrects the issue, and I don't have to go through that any more. I also don't have to take multiple exposures of the same shot so I can pick the most in focus one later.

Also, eye AF basically ensures that you nail the eye every shot.


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arthurbikemad
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Post has been last edited 3 months ago by arthurbikemad. 2 edits done in total.
Aug 18, 2017 01:59 |  #8

Well I'm a little shocked, I have about twenty decent lenses from Canon, 35/1.4ii, 85/1.2ii, 100/2.8, 135/2, 200/2, 500/4ii and some L zooms, 24-70/2.8ii and more, ALL of them are pin sharp! When used with decent light I.e studio strobes, in my case ELB400s and speedlights I am often gobsmacked at how sharp the 5D4 is as well as my old 5D3, hell even my 1DX2 looks sharp with the 35!! Mind you eye lash to eyelid is the depth of field wide open on the 85 so missed focus is BAD! Given the number of shooters using 5D3 for portrait work mostly I'd guess for weddings etc you don't see many threads like this. Perhaps the OP should take a close look at the focus system and send it for evaluation to a dealer or Canon, do you have issues with static subjects? Perhaps compare both focus in live view 'v' viewfinder. I do use Focal but tbh with three bodies the correction is only ever plus two or so, real world that's hard to see. ALL that said I totally get what mystik610 is saying and some photographers can see the slightest missed focus at pixel level, you should post some examples + EXIF so people can express an opinion on what the issue may be! I am sure someone can help guide you. That or cut your losses and buy into a new system ASAP. I'd have a Sony here now but I have too many cameras already, however I strongly believe that Canon DSLR and any other brand of DSLR can deliver great results most of the time.




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welshwizard1971
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Post has been edited 3 months ago by welshwizard1971.
Aug 18, 2017 04:51 |  #9

arthurbikemad wrote in post #18430258 (external link)
Maybe look at your case scenarios, move the shutter priority to focus. My old 5D3 was an awesome camera, personally I would never change from such a camera to a mirrorless, unless it's an A9 ;) anyway I now shoot with a Mk4, it's not a massive leap up from the Mk3, the Mk3 is a supurb action camera, I used to get fast action shots with my Mk3 daily, never heard anyone slate the AF so poorly, perhaps it's a duff.

Shutter Priority was in 'focus', one of the things I checked on my 'time out'.


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 3 months ago by welshwizard1971. 2 edits done in total.
Aug 18, 2017 05:06 |  #10

Aghhhh rats, I went through the batch this morning, processed the ones I liked, saved them, then in auto pilot deleted the duff ones, forgetting I wanted to put some examples on here, so that doesn't help, sorry.

Having calmed down and reviewed them, it was probably 40% failure rate, still way too high, with all the failures moving targets in AI Servo, but being generous to the camera it was slightly shaded, but not dark, and the shutter was set as slow as I could get away with at 1/200 to compensate for being dark but maintaining a half decent DOF to keep them all in focus, maybe that was too slow for the kids moving around, but then they weren't sprinting, and the surroundings aren't in focus either. Also, when it did work, they were in focus at 1/200, with slight motion blur to a leading leg or hand, certainly not to the body or face, so 1/200 should have been fine. However, I did manage to get this one, 1/200 f5 ISO1000 70mm. It was in auto ISO to try and keep the ISO as low as possible with the main parameters of SS and DOF being manually set.

This was the last of a sequence of him running towards me, about 7 shots, this was the sharpest and I liked his expression so I kept this one, not exactly one to be proud of, this is SOOC. As you can see, all soft, nothing in focus front to back, motion blur to his leading foot, but even his planted foot is OOF.

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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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Charlie
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Aug 18, 2017 09:31 |  #11

welshwizard1971 wrote in post #18430684 (external link)
Aghhhh rats, I went through the batch this morning, processed the ones I liked, saved them, then in auto pilot deleted the duff ones, forgetting I wanted to put some examples on here, so that doesn't help, sorry.

Having calmed down and reviewed them, it was probably 40% failure rate, still way too high, with all the failures moving targets in AI Servo, but being generous to the camera it was slightly shaded, but not dark, and the shutter was set as slow as I could get away with at 1/200 to compensate for being dark but maintaining a half decent DOF to keep them all in focus, maybe that was too slow for the kids moving around, but then they weren't sprinting, and the surroundings aren't in focus either. Also, when it did work, they were in focus at 1/200, with slight motion blur to a leading leg or hand, certainly not to the body or face, so 1/200 should have been fine. However, I did manage to get this one, 1/200 f5 ISO1000 70mm. It was in auto ISO to try and keep the ISO as low as possible with the main parameters of SS and DOF being manually set.

This was the last of a sequence of him running towards me, about 7 shots, this was the sharpest and I liked his expression so I kept this one, not exactly one to be proud of, this is SOOC. As you can see, all soft, nothing in focus front to back, motion blur to his leading foot, but even his planted foot is OOF.

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HTTP response: NOT FOUND | MIME changed to 'image/png'

double your shutter speeds for the sake of testing, and if you consistently get soft images at that rate, then you can be certain it was focus issues.

since you mentioned 70mm, you shouldnt have much issues with the lenses you have in that range, both very good focusing lenses. I'de expect at least 90% hit rate....


Sony A7rii x2 - FE 12-24/4 - FE 24-240 - FE 28/2 - FE 35/2.8 - CV 35/1.7 - FE 50/1.8 - FE 85/1.8 - EF 135/1.8 Art - F 600/5.6 - CZ 35-70, 100-300 - Astro Rok 14/2.8, 24/1.4 - Tamron 28-75 f2.8, 70-200 f2.8 VC

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welshwizard1971
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Aug 18, 2017 13:16 |  #12

Took about 60 pics of them baking this afternoon, so not moving at 1/125 but still using AI Focus, every single one pin sharp. My AI focus can't seem to handle things that are moving? Unless I'm expecting too much, would you guys expect to get them all in focus if a 2yr old was waddling his way towards you in half decent light?


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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arthurbikemad
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Aug 18, 2017 13:28 |  #13

Well my 5D3 seems ok at MotoGP, BSB, WSB, Fast jets, F1 and so on ;) unlike a few mirrorless I have tried ;)

No joking aside, I'd say you have an issue.

Cheers.




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welshwizard1971
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Aug 18, 2017 13:46 |  #14

What I was sort of hoping to hear :)


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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Charlie
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Aug 18, 2017 13:50 |  #15

welshwizard1971 wrote in post #18431023 (external link)
Took about 60 pics of them baking this afternoon, so not moving at 1/125 but still using AI Focus, every single one pin sharp. My AI focus can't seem to handle things that are moving? Unless I'm expecting too much, would you guys expect to get them all in focus if a 2yr old was waddling his way towards you in half decent light?

Who the heck uses AI focus? Does it even work?

Stick with AI servo, and if you're shooting kids, micro movements will get you, raise the shutter speeds until you iron out your focus issues. Shooting F2.8 with top lenses, you shouldnt have much issues with focus.


Sony A7rii x2 - FE 12-24/4 - FE 24-240 - FE 28/2 - FE 35/2.8 - CV 35/1.7 - FE 50/1.8 - FE 85/1.8 - EF 135/1.8 Art - F 600/5.6 - CZ 35-70, 100-300 - Astro Rok 14/2.8, 24/1.4 - Tamron 28-75 f2.8, 70-200 f2.8 VC

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Sick of 5D mkIII auto focus issues
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