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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 15 Jan 2012 (Sunday) 16:55
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IS AUTO FOCUS OVERATED???

 
bobbyz
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Jan 15, 2012 22:43 |  #31

Hogloff wrote in post #13710970 (external link)
AF is not over rated for certain situations, but I find it extremely liberating to use manual focus and not have to worry about putting a red box overtop of what you want in focus. Using a true manual focus lens like the Zeiss 35mm, a camera with a nice bright viewfinder like the 5d2 with an EGS screen, focusing becomes just natural. Look at what you want in focus and turn the focus ring until it is in focus and you are done. No need of selecting focus point, ensuring the point is over what you need in focus, quite often needing to change your coposition because the focus does not fall on what you are tring to get infocus.

It takes a little practice to train your eyes, but once you get the hang of it, manual focus is extremely liberating. Now if we are talking about focus tracking...then automation has it all over manual.

again how about some example shots of moving stuff like people kids.;)


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K6AZ
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Jan 15, 2012 22:56 |  #32

There is a time and a place for both. Having started in the film days with MF only AF is something a lot of people take for granted these days but not me, I do use it where I can get good results. MF still has its place especially for the types of applications the Zeiss lenses are used for. As soon as I sell off some gear I'll be buying the 100mm and either the 18mm or 21mm.


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Hogloff
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Jan 15, 2012 22:56 |  #33
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bobbyz wrote in post #13711074 (external link)
again how about some example shots of moving stuff like people kids.;)

Bobby, I'm not trying to convince you of anything. If manual focus is not suited for what you shoot, then use autofocus. It's not a measure of who or what is better. It's just a preference. I really don't care how you focus, or in fact what you shoot. I just provided my experience shooting the types of things I like to shoot. Do things always need to be looked at with extremes? I use both types of focus where appropriate. If manual focus does not work for you, don't use it...just don't get your pink panties into a knot if others enjoy using manual focus once in awhile.




  
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jdizzle
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Jan 15, 2012 22:59 |  #34

K6AZ wrote in post #13711112 (external link)
There is a time and a place for both. Having started in the film days with MF only AF is something a lot of people take for granted these days but not me, I do use it where I can get good results. MF still has its place especially for the types of applications the Zeiss lenses are used for. As soon as I sell off some gear I'll be buying the 100mm and either the 18mm or 21mm.

My recommendation is the 21 and 100! ;)




  
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K6AZ
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Jan 15, 2012 23:03 |  #35

jdizzle wrote in post #13711125 (external link)
My recommendation is the 21 and 100! ;)

Yeah I know, like a lot of other discussions we've had this one too. :D

I'm still leaning towards the 18mm but there was a 21mm at a great price today by someone that was more or less local and I would have snapped it up if I could free up the cash. There is a huge glut of gear on the market right now and I've had difficulty moving even high end stuff. So it may be a while and I'll be able to read and look at even more comparisons between the two.


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Mike ­ K
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Jan 16, 2012 00:59 |  #36

Over half of my lenses are manual focus only. I use Live View 5-10X with the camera on a tripod. In my experience, I consider LV 10X to be more accurate and more precise than phase detect AF. In fact I use LV10X as a basis to optimize and calibrate my micro adjust settings. I also use LV a lot for focus situations where one cannot readily see the viewfinder, like with the camera very low to the ground as with tilt shift lenses.
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LudwigVB
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Jan 16, 2012 06:19 |  #37

DC Fan wrote in post #13709769 (external link)
Are you aware of the history of Canon SLR's and 35mm cameras?

In the 1980's, Canon had a series of cameras based on a state-of-the-art system, the FD mount. (external link) FD cameras, such as the AE-1 Program, were among the best in the business, and they used manual focus lenses that were some of the most effective on the market.

But Canon's technical and commercial advantage disappeared when Minolta came out with their A-mount series of cameras (external link) in the mid 1980's. The Minolta Maxxum  (external link)offered a new autofocus system and a series of autofocus lenses to work with that camera. Minolta autofocus cameras offered something that Canon could not match. It turned out that photographers preferred the convenience of autofocus to the process of manual focus lenses, and Minolta moved to the top of the industry.

At first, Canon offered a few kludged autofocus FD lenses. Then the company gave up on the manual focus FD system, and in 1987 Canon released an all-new series of autofocus cameras, the EF-mount EOS series. (external link) Photographers complained they were being abandoned by Canon when the EF cameras were released. Then they saw the cameras' autofocus capabilities, decided they liked autofocus more than manual focus, and made the switch.

If autofocus was "overrated," then the Minolta Maxxum would have failed, and Canon would not have been pressured into developing the EF-mount. Canon would have joined Nikon in using the same lens mount for 40 years, and most of the lenses currently produced would have never been developed. Instead, only a tiny fraction of EF-mount lenses in use today are manual focus lenses, presumably because the customers want it that way.

These are the lessons taught by history.

^ +1 Very welll stated!




  
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cdifoto
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Jan 16, 2012 06:21 |  #38

Autofocus is no more overrated than the in-camera meter.


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cdifoto
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Jan 16, 2012 06:25 |  #39

Musicmacd wrote in post #13710269 (external link)
Thanks for all responses, "over rated" was probably the wrong word! I just found that the I tend to get a lot of OOF shots with Auto which winds me up!! At least when I get an OOF shot with the Zeiss I only have myself to blame. I am mostly taking family shots with active children.

You have better success with manual focus than auto focus on active children? Kudos to you!

Then again you may be in the wrong mode. Do you use AI Servo or One Shot? You should be on the former.


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cdifoto
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Jan 16, 2012 06:31 |  #40

bobbyz wrote in post #13711074 (external link)
again how about some example shots of moving stuff like people kids.;)

You should try reading. He said that automation has it all over anything that moves...


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howiewu
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Jan 16, 2012 06:38 |  #41

Not only is AF overrated, IS is overrated too.

Actually digital is also overrated.

Come to think about it, photography itself is just so overrated -- I mean who needs a camera when a pencil and a sheet of paper works just fine?


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Jan 16, 2012 06:41 |  #42

Pencil and paper is overrated too. Tablets are in. Stone tablets that is.


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DStanic
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Jan 16, 2012 06:45 |  #43

saying AF is over-rated is like saying automatic transmissions are over-rated and we should be using "three on the tree" manual transmission.

MF is fun but only with MF lenses and on FF bodies or better yet, older 35mm SLRs. Trying to focus with AF lenses on a crop body is a PITA and doesn't yield the best results. I don't even like to MF on my 5D body. I do feel like buying some B&W film to use on my Minolta X9 SLR for my next vacation in Mexico however. :)


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ben805
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Jan 16, 2012 06:48 |  #44

Musicmacd wrote in post #13709394 (external link)
This is my first forum post!!! I recently bought some Carl Zeiss lens and have found manual focus with a eg-S screen on a 5D2 to be more effective (in most cases) than using auto focus. I have MA corrected my lens. Whats your feeling on this???

This thread is overrated, the 5D2 has a very capable AF if you use the center AF point or enable the AF expansion to help tracking in Ai Servo. If you can out-focus the 5D2 AF system, either your equipment or your shooting skill is defective.


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sonnyc
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Jan 16, 2012 11:40 |  #45

I thought Carl Zeiss is overrated... No??? :) haha


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IS AUTO FOCUS OVERATED???
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