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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EOS Digital Cameras 
Thread started 01 Nov 2012 (Thursday) 10:31
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Solution for 5D Classic Split-Image Focus Screen!!!!

1,292 posts
Likes: 3
Joined Apr 2011
Nov 25, 2012 19:35 as a reply to  @ post 15226045 |  #16

Whatever the stock one is, has the split-image in the middle, old-school in a ring around it and the matte around the edge.

Some updates with the focus screen. So far it's still spot on, but there are two issues.

Focusing with the 50 1.4 pre-AI is hit or miss, but most of that is my fault as I dont have the steadiest hand and the 1.4 DoF is razor thin. But when I nail it, wow.

The other is the metering.....most shots are -1EV but some shots come out underexposed depending on the lighting situation. The good thing is most of the time I can pull it +1EV in Lightroom and have no loss in image quality even up to ISO 800, and probably half of the scenes in 1600. As I shoot landscape, the camera spends most of its life at 100-320 so exposure isnt too bad of a problem.

Now some good news.....tested it with the M42 screwmount adapter, spot on! Even better than the Nikon mount, but mostly because the lenses I'm using for m42 are f3.5 and f4.5, but that will change tomorrow with a visit to a pawnshop with m42 glass.

So far, I think this screen is going to be a permanent fixture in my stable. I really love it!

5D / 400d / 70-200-4LIS / 50 Mk.I / 28-70
RB67 Pro-S / 50-90-180 Holy Trinity, 120/polaroid back
Graphic View I 4x5 / Schneider 180 / Meyer 135 / Ektar 127

1,422 posts
Likes: 3
Joined Jan 2008
Dec 27, 2012 13:45 |  #17

where did you source this screen? was it pulled from an old camera body?

flickr (external link)

5dc w/ee-s, rokinon 85mm f/1.4, rokinon 35mm f/1.4, rokinon 8mm f/3.5, sigma 24 f/1.8, canon 35-135 f/3.5-4.5, canon 50mm f/1.8, nikkor s-auto 50mm f/1.4, tokina 11-16 f/2.8, 430ex2, pcb e640, oc-3, st-e2, pixel knight tr332, DiCAPac WPS10, b+w 10 stop nd, hoya hd cpl, kenko ext. tubes, brolly, diy softbox, etc.

106 posts
Gallery: 5 photos
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Joined Feb 2012
Location: Portland, Oregon
Jun 15, 2013 13:14 |  #18

any more info on this?

Sigma 35mm Art

Cream of the Crop
10,251 posts
Likes: 83
Joined Aug 2007
Location: San Jose, California
Jun 15, 2013 13:50 |  #19

NorthwestRebel wrote in post #16033724 (external link)
any more info on this?

I haven't done this... But I know a little about the vintage Nikons and the interchangeable screens for more modern cameras.

Many of the Nikon FM/FE/FA series cameras used the same, interchangeable focus screens... that apparently can be fitted to Canon 5D classic (but not necessarily 5DII since it uses a different focus screen from the classic). Here's a link to a website with more info about the Nikon screens and which models used them (external link) (most, but not all FM/FE had interchangeable screens.... some of the very late FA models use different screens, which may or may not work)

There were several different Nikon screens available. The standard "Type K" is most likely what you would want for manual focusing. It has a split image center dot with microdiaprism "donut" around it. You use the split image with shorter focal lengths. But it blacks out with longer telephotos, which is when you switch to using the microdiaprisms.

There are also "Type B" and "Type E" Nikon screens, both are matte focus screens only, the latter also has an alignment grid engraved. These are pretty similar to what's already in (or available for) the 5D classic.

There are also third party replacement screens available (see below), that have similar features in various combinations.

However, there is no free lunch... many of the alternative screens will have an effect on the camera's metering system. Canon has provision in a Custom Function for their own grid type and high precision screens... but not for third party screens.

You'll see the most problem with the very center part of the metering system, where the split image dot and microdiaprism "donut" are located. Your Spot Metering likely will not be usable at all. If using Evaluative Metering with the Center AF point active, that also will likely be more strongly skewed, though probably not as bad as Spot Metering. This will occur with either the Nikon screens or the third party... overall change in the amount of light transmission effects the general metering and any screen with central manual focus assist features will more stongly effect metering at that point.

Canon's own screens aren't terribly expensive, usually less than $50 US. If you are trying to do manual focus and using fairly large aperture lenses, the "S" screen might work for you (and won't negatively effect any of the metering modes).

The third party screens can be a lot more, most are $100 US and up.

The old Nikon screens might be found used fairly inexpensively. And there may be some other screens from vintage cameras that would work in 5DC or 5DII. Many vintage manual focus cameras used similar setup to the Nikon "K", by default. Since they all at essentially "full frame", the screens are bound to be close to the same size.

There are various modern third party screen manufacturers and sellers... (external link) (external link)
Haoda (no longer can find a home page for them, might only be avail. though retailers)

Also some cheaper Chinese made ones might be found on eBay.

You might already know... Any time you are handling or changing these screens you have to be very, very careful. The screen itself needs to be handled by the edges only. It's optical plastic, easily scratched or damaged and difficult to clean. And, the focus screen is directly above the camera's mirror... another delicate part that's very easily damaged (and expensive to have repaired... it is not a DIY job).

Alan Myers (external link) "Walk softly and carry a big lens."
5DII, 7DII(x2), 7D(x2) & other cameras. 10-22mm, Tokina 12-24/4, 20/2.8, TS 24/3.5L, 24-70/2.8L, 28/1.8, 28-135 IS (x2), TS 45/2.8, 50/1.4, Tamron 60/2.0, 70-200/4L IS, 70-200/2.8 IS, 85/1.8, Tamron 90/2.5 Macro, 100/2.8 USM, 100-400L II, 135/2L, 180/3.5L, 300/4L IS (x2), 300/2.8L IS, 500/4L IS, EF 1.4X II, EF 2X II. Flashes, studio strobes & various access. - FLICKR (external link) - ZENFOLIO (external link)

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Solution for 5D Classic Split-Image Focus Screen!!!!
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