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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EOS Digital Cameras 
Thread started 13 Jun 2013 (Thursday) 11:52
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Does the EOS M's Hybrid AF work for Infrared photography?

 
3ntreri
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Jun 13, 2013 11:52 |  #1

I'm looking at getting a new, small, mirrorless camera converted for infrared photography. I had a converted Canon Rebel XS previously, but the fact that phase-detect autofocus doesn't work well in IR made it kind of a pain to use; forcing me into live-view mode so I could use the slower contrast-detect AF.

I recently came across a good deal on an EOS M kit, and am considering picking it up for IR, but I'm not sure if the new on-sensor hybrid AF system will have issues... Has anyone shot IR with an EOS M?

Thanks


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Mike ­ K
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Jun 13, 2013 14:45 |  #2

I have a D60 and 5DII converted to IR. One can calibrate PD AF for a given lens, however this does not mean it will work well with another lens in your bag. Even a single zoom lens can have very different focusing offsets for one end of the zoom Vs the other. I have a Canon 24-70 f2.8 version I zoom that has red marks in the distance window. This is the off set at infinity focus. the 70-24 numbers correspond to the zoom position.
http://www.fototime.co​m/0CBE1D1D4DDBDF7/medi​um800.jpg (external link)
So for different zoom positions, the amount of IR offset at infinity varies quite a lot for 70 Vs 24mm. IR calibration will not guarantee in focus results. Outside of focus convergence, there can be chromatic abberation within the IR/Vis wavelengths your IR filter lets in.

My experience is that magnified Live View is absolutely the best method of focus for IR. If you are really attached to AF, use Live View "Live" or contrast detect. This will always be optimal, there is no offset. Remember that the LV Live focus will focus and expose based upon the location of the magnification rectangle.
Mike K


Canon 6D, 1DmkII, IR modified 5DII with lots of Canon L, TSE and Zeiss ZE lenses

  
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3ntreri
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Jun 13, 2013 14:51 |  #3

Thanks Mike,
Yes that was my workflow with my old IR-converted XS; but I have to admit that I instinctively went to the viewfinder almost every time I used it, catching myself at the last moment and switching to live view. This was fine for fun/creative stuff, but it burned me a few times at weddings where I completely forgot and ended up with out of focus images.

I'm hoping that mirrorless cameras, which use primarily contrast-detect AF anyway, will be a better solution - especially if I can still mount my EF lenses


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Mike ­ K
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Jun 13, 2013 16:05 |  #4

3ntreri wrote in post #16028189 (external link)
Thanks Mike,
Yes that was my workflow with my old IR-converted XS; but I have to admit that I instinctively went to the viewfinder almost every time I used it, catching myself at the last moment and switching to live view. This was fine for fun/creative stuff, but it burned me a few times at weddings where I completely forgot and ended up with out of focus images.

I'm hoping that mirrorless cameras, which use primarily contrast-detect AF anyway, will be a better solution - especially if I can still mount my EF lenses

All of Canon dSLRs have contrast detect AF available, although very, very few regularly use it as CD is slower than PD for these Canon bodies. Note you will not avoid IR wavelength based chromatic abberation which will be lens specific and worse for wider bandpass IR filters. I prefer converted FF dSLR as the larger sensor will have less noise, and I have the lenses I want. Sounds like you view mirrorless to be an advantage in that there is no optical viewfinder to distract you. But I'm sure the contrast AF works better in mirrorless than most dSLRs. I would think it comes down to which lenses you are interested in using.
Mike K


Canon 6D, 1DmkII, IR modified 5DII with lots of Canon L, TSE and Zeiss ZE lenses

  
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3ntreri
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Jun 13, 2013 17:23 |  #5

Right, I understand that PD autofocus is faster for visible light, but it doesn't work in IR unless it's specifically calibrated per lens & focal length. That's really what I'm trying to avoid by going mirrorless, as they'll generally use a better implementation of CD autofocus by default. The EOS M's hybrid PD/CD autofocus system has me concerned for IR focusing purposes though.

If found having to use live view to focus on a DSLR counter-intuitive as it's not something I usually do. This would potentially be solved by using a mirrorless camera designed around live view or maybe with an EVF. A full frame sensor would be nice, but the EOS M's APS-C sensor should be sufficient for my purposes.

As for lenses, I'm thinking I'll pick up an EF-S ultra wide like the 10-22mm or one of the similar 3rd party options. I'll be able to use it on my 7D and, theoretically, the EOS M.


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Does the EOS M's Hybrid AF work for Infrared photography?
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