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Old 19th of December 2009 (Sat)   #1
snyderman
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Default 7D setup for basketball?

Anybody? Shot last night with settings I thought would work. It didn't and the results showed.

I tried setting up the focus points to center, (AI Servo) plus four surrounding at the 'micro' level if that means anything. Many shots I clearly had the center point right on the jersey numbers and the camera chose a focus point to the right (usually) causing misfocus.

If anyone is already shooting basketball with a 7D, can you please share your AI Servo focal point(s) setup with me? I'd really appreciate it.

Thanks in advance.

dave
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Old 19th of December 2009 (Sat)   #2
JeffreyG
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Default Re: 7D setup for basketball?

In moving traffic with the 1D I generally do not use the expansion points.

I only use expansion points to track subjects that are moving erratically but which do not have a lot of alternate and incorrect other subjects nearby.
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Old 19th of December 2009 (Sat)   #3
10megapixel
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Default Re: 7D setup for basketball?

I agree with the post above. I don't own a 7d but on my 1d2 I always use center point AF with the expansion points disabled for basketball and this seems to work best.
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Old 19th of December 2009 (Sat)   #4
snyderman
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Default Re: 7D setup for basketball?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffreyG View Post
In moving traffic with the 1D I generally do not use the expansion points.

I only use expansion points to track subjects that are moving erratically but which do not have a lot of alternate and incorrect other subjects nearby.
Makes sense. Like shooting birds in flight? Set to centerpoint and leave it at that?

thank you.

dave
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Old 19th of December 2009 (Sat)   #5
Mike R
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Default Re: 7D setup for basketball?

For basketball with the 7D I use center point with expansion, AI Servo. I also have the camera set up to change the focus point when I rotate the camera. It changes it almost instantly. I shoot mostly verticle and want the focus pt on the face.
I shoot in a cave and cannot use flash so I shoot at f/2.2, 1/400-1/500, ISO 2000

When I first used the 7D with my 85 f/1.8,(volleyball) it was doing what you say yours is doing, focusing to the right and back. All my other lenses were perfect. I tried to mico adjust the 85 without success. I called Canon (NJ) and sent the camera in. My 85 is perfect now.
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Old 19th of December 2009 (Sat)   #6
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Default Re: 7D setup for basketball?

Dave, can you show a sample pic or two so we can see what you are talking about? I have shot lots of basketball with Pentax DSLR's before this, that are not even in the same AF league as the 7D, and didn't have too many problems. I would expect the 7D to excel at this application.

Pentax k20D 1/250 f/3.5


Pentax k10d 1/250 f/1.4 very poorly lit gym:


Again, realize that these two cameras are not even on the same planet as the 7D with regards to AF speed and accuracy. They both are notoriously slow to focus in lower-light conditions, and the lenses used were body-driven screw drive.
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Old 19th of December 2009 (Sat)   #7
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Default Re: 7D setup for basketball?

I've had similar problems with both 7D and 5DMII... I suspect the problem is AF mode, single point, manually selected, with expansion points (which is what the mode with the surrounding micro points showing is called)... in all the cases it's the mode I was using.

Weird thing with 7D in particular was that reviewing the images later in DPP it showed the center point being used, and dead on the subject, but still the image was grossly misfocused a lot of the time. I had better luck with my 50D (which don't have expansion points, so I was only using the center point... and about the only time focus would be grossly off was when the user - moi - let the AF point drift off the subject during movement).

With 7D only, I also shot a test series "in real life" using all AF point mode... Even though DPP shows one or more points lit up right on the subjects... sometimes focus would be dead on, other times it was off a little, sometimes a lot, and still other times it missed by a mile. Focus would be on points that weren't even lit.

With 50D I rarely had focus issues that I didn't blame on myself. Most often it was too shallow depth of field combined with where I chose to place the AF point. I can hit probably better than 90% in focus with 50D, even in the same locations with the same, tough lighting situations. Haven't been nearly as successful with 7D or 5DII so far.

All the testing I did was using AI Servo and "thumb focusing". One of the most extensive sessions with 7D was a very cold one day (for N. California) and after about 6 hours shooting I'm sure there were times I simply cued AF too late or missed it entirely. Wearing gloves some of the time didn't help either!

But, essentially I'm going back to using single point on both 7D and 5DII now... That will mean center point most of the time on the 5DII, since it's only got that one cross sensor type. With 7D might be able to use some of the other 18 points more freely. We'll see.
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Old 19th of December 2009 (Sat)   #8
JeffreyG
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Default Re: 7D setup for basketball?

Quote:
Originally Posted by snyderman View Post
Makes sense. Like shooting birds in flight? Set to centerpoint and leave it at that?

thank you.

dave
I don't use expansion points for basketball, volleyball or soccer because the atheletes get close together and partially occlude each other and the points will grab the wrong person.

I do use expansion points for gymnastics, running etc.
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Old 20th of December 2009 (Sun)   #9
Larry Weinman
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Default Re: 7D setup for basketball?

Quote:
Originally Posted by snyderman View Post
Makes sense. Like shooting birds in flight? Set to centerpoint and leave it at that?

thank you.

dave
Birds in flight is where I find center point expansion works best. Particularly fast flying smaller birds. Just a personal preference. Basketball however, use center point only.
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Old 20th of December 2009 (Sun)   #10
snyderman
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Default Re: 7D setup for basketball?

I'm going to go back and watch again the 7D videos on B&H site. More specifically, the section near the end of Part 1 that talks about the focus points, setting and saving of.

This still has me scratching my head.

Went back and looked at some pics with red focus point clearly on one player with a player BEHIND the focus point clearly in much better focus than where the red square was clearly visible.

Also discovered that my lens was set to +8 on the microadjust giving me the impression that microadjust is the issue and more than likely NOT the camera's focus. More evidence of 'user-error' than equipment.

thanks for all the ideas folks. Really appreciate the insights.

dave
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