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Author Topic: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it  (Read 60707 times)

pensive tomato

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #120 on: December 15, 2013, 08:38:50 PM »
On the flip side, with the -3 EV center point, you might get more keepers in low light with the 6D than anything else Canon sells (including the 1DX).  I've found its low-light focusing to be just plain spectacular.

How do you define 'low light'?  For example, the difference between shooting at -2 EV and-3 EV could mean 1/15 s, f/2.8, ISO 51200 vs. 102400.  Neither is very usable from an IQ standpoint.  What most people call 'low light' is generally substantially brighter than either spec.

I agree that "works well in low light" or similar phrases have a rather imprecise meaning. I thought that Canon's spec on the center point is rather more precise than that, center AF point sensitivity down to EV -3 (at 73ºF/23ºC, ISO 100), which for example would be an 8-min exposure at f/8 or 1-min at f/2.8. Perhaps familiarity with night photography might help envisioning what level of available light would call for such an exposure (considerations on what constitute an adequate exposure aside).

As a side note, I can report using live view AF in the 6D for night landscape shots of 16-min at f/8, ISO 100 (EV -4). AF is rather slow and requires judicious use when choosing your subject. I wouldn't use the viewfinder in those scenarios, as I've found it too dim and small. I haven't heard/read anything pointing out that other cameras wouldn't do as well as the 6D is these circumstances. But I've personally witnessed other photographers resorting to MF quicker than me in these situations (technique and preference may play a role as well).
6D | M | 24-70 f/2.8L II | 70-200 f/4L IS | 40 f/2.8 | 50 f/1.4 | 85 f/1.8 | 100 f/2.8L Macro IS | 22 f/2 STM | 600EX-RT (x2) | MT-24 EX | 270 EX II | ST-E3-RT

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #120 on: December 15, 2013, 08:38:50 PM »

candc

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #121 on: December 15, 2013, 09:12:22 PM »
;D

Faster than a speeding 5DIII! More powerful than a 1D X! Able to leap tall 7Ds in a single bound!  Look, up in the sky! It's taking pictures of birds! It's taking pictures of planes! 

It's SuperCarl!

Yes, it's SuperCarl, strange visitor from Canon HQ, who came to Earth with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal cameras. SuperCarl, who can change the course of mighty product development, bend CF cards in his bare hands, and who, disguised as CarlTN, mild-mannered poster on a great rumor forum, fights a never-ending battle for truth, justice and the 6D way.

That's the best, if I was Carl I would make that my avatar.

CarlTN

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #122 on: December 16, 2013, 04:33:27 PM »
;D

Faster than a speeding 5DIII! More powerful than a 1D X! Able to leap tall 7Ds in a single bound!  Look, up in the sky! It's taking pictures of birds! It's taking pictures of planes! 

It's SuperCarl!

Yes, it's SuperCarl, strange visitor from Canon HQ, who came to Earth with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal cameras. SuperCarl, who can change the course of mighty product development, bend CF cards in his bare hands, and who, disguised as CarlTN, mild-mannered poster on a great rumor forum, fights a never-ending battle for truth, justice and the 6D way.

Thanks, that's mildly amusing.  You're a true geek aren't you? 

The part about me changing the course of product development is false.  It's you who would like to see nobody buy the 6D, so it's more you that thinks they know what Canon should build, and what they should not.  It's you who thinks anyone who doesn't use either a 1DX or 5D3 is not a serious photographer...so it is really you who needs mocking here, for the biased snobbish fanboy that you are.

My point in this thread, and in all cases involving defending the 6D's ability, is to tell people that it is more than just a sensor...and that it can autofocus.  Your point is to bash and mock those who would ever agree with me...but you spend your time on me in particular because it gets your little scientist loins in an uproar...Dr. Bigshot!

I could make a lame cartoon about you too, and I might sometime...but I have work to do.  Your boss needs to see what you do when you're supposed to be working...

Valvebounce

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #123 on: December 17, 2013, 05:58:38 AM »
Hey Folks.
Afraid I have no usefull camera based info as I only have a lowly 7D and have never knowingly seen either a 5DIII or 6D in action.
How about you all agree to disagree on this point, I have seen what started as a valid positive post degenerate in to a mud slinging session. I value comments from all on this forum, everyone has something to offer that may help me improve my technique and get more from my hobby, everyone also has their own opinion and these are as different as can be, wouldn't the world be boring if we were all the same!

Tis the season to be jolly, of goodwill to all men etc etc.
So please no more mud slinging. Let's get back to normal service of getting along and improving our hobby.

Cheers Graham.
7D + Grip, 40D + Grip, 20D, EF-S 17-85 Kit lens, EF 70-200 f2.8 L IS II USM, EF 2x III, Sigma 150-500, Sigma 17-70 f2.8-4 C, 50mm f1.8, 550EX some Filters Remotes Macro tubes Tripod heads etc!
20D, BG-E2N, 17-85mm, 50mm are pre loved. :)
(300D Saved a holiday, E-FS 18-55 Cosina 100-300 retired)

YuengLinger

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #124 on: December 17, 2013, 06:20:01 AM »
Perfectly obvious Canon dropped the ball with the 6D, giving it weaker AF than the 60D.  Canon makes mistakes and should be called on them, just as they should be praised for the many cameras they get so wonderfully right.

Note that I don't call the AF issue a mistake simply because I have to pay more for a FF with good AF.  Putting the weak system in the entry level FF was a blunder because Canon needs dSLR customers committed to its entire eos/ef system.  Ticking off current customers looking to upgrade to FF was bad business, as was turning off prospective customers comparing Canon's offerings to those of other companies.  If Canon had simply equaled the xxD line's AF in an entry level FF, they'd have had more customers coming in and more customers with ef-s lenses looking to buy new lenses for their FF.  But Canon was shortsighted, stingy, and over protective of the 5DIII, which was simply out of range for a great many enthusiasts.

« Last Edit: December 17, 2013, 08:07:32 AM by YuengLinger »

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #125 on: December 17, 2013, 07:36:32 AM »
Perfectly obvious Canon dropped the ball with the 6D, giving it weaker AF than the 60D.  Canon makes mistakes and should be called on them, just as they should be praised for the many cameras they get so wonderfully right.

Note that I don't call the AF issue a mistake simply because I have to pay more for a FF with good AF.  Putting the weak system in the entry level FF was a blunder because Canon needs dSLR customers committed to its entire eos/ef system.  Ticking off current customers looking to upgrade to FF was bad business, as was turning off prospective customers comparing Canon's offerings to those of other companies.  If Canon had simply equaled the xxD line's AF in an entry level FF, they'd have had more customers coming in and more customers with ef-s lenses looking to buy new lenses for their FF.  But Canon was shortsighted, stingy, and over protective of the 5DIII, which was simply out of range for a great many enthusiasts.

We have members of the press in the USA who reflexively cover for their favorite politicians no matter how outlandish the lies or harmful the policies.  But you know what?  Those journalists get paid for their sophistry.

Seriously?  Canon knew what it was doing when it spec'ed out the 6D -- they did not drop the ball.  Dropping the ball implies it was done by negligence or laziness and Canon intentionally chose an AF system for the 6D to be what it is.  Canon has traditionally used AF as a discriminator across camera models, and the 6D is no different.  This is marketing.  Why would you put 90% of the features into a camera that you'd charge 50% less?  The 6D's AF is better than the 5D II's, and the 6D is more sensitive to light than the 5D III and has signficant features that the 5D III lacks -- GPS and wifi.  If Canon hadn't planned on a 6D, there is no way that the 5D III would have a similar AF system as the 1DX.  Canon chose to give the 6D a more advanced sensor, wifi and GPS or would you rather that Canon would have made the 6D without wifi and GPS and with a worse sensor but with better AF?  You might have opted for the second option, but their marketing research guided their decision for the first option.

YuengLinger

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #126 on: December 17, 2013, 08:18:58 AM »
Yes, their intention was clear, but they missed the mark by having the AF less capable on the 6D than the 60D.  Nine points all cross point would not have threatened the 5D Mark III much, but would have encouraged a lot more people to make the move to FF and further commit to eos/ef.

Without trying to be offensive, I often find myself mystified by customers who develop an almost religious faith in brands.  "If The Company did it, it must  be right."  Why?  Why recognize mistakes and press for improvements?

I want a strong Canon.  Period.  Why?  I'm invested in their system, and I want them to do well and keep producing an servicing equipment for years to come. 

I belong to two photography clubs, one a PPA affiliate, the other a great group of enthusiasts who produce great fine art and nature work.  Nobody thought the 6D was well thought out for any level of photographer, except, maybe, those who do a lot of arranged and found still life on tripods and could use Live View most of the time.  That's too specialized for success.


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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #126 on: December 17, 2013, 08:18:58 AM »

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #127 on: December 17, 2013, 09:34:46 AM »
Without trying to be offensive, I often find myself mystified by customers who develop an almost religious faith in brands.  "If The Company did it, it must  be right."  Why?  Why recognize mistakes and press for improvements?

And who are these "customers who develop an almost religious faith in brands"?

Yes, I understand your point, but there are also a lot of others (not you) and a lot of threads already that basically come down to "I want a 5DIII at a 6D or a 70D price" or "I want a FF mirrorless with an EVF that servo AF that is as good as a 5D III for less than a 6D price), which is either not economically feasible for now or would lead to less total profit for Canon over the long term.  And it is long term profits that matter because that is how R&D budgets get planned 3-5 years in advance.  Canon is a stable company and there is a lot of value in that.  I have a lot more faith in Canon being in the camera business 5 years from now than Sony.

FWIW, I started with with film with a Pentax but found their lens selection too limiting.  My first digital camera was a Nikon.  I preferred Nikon's flash system to Canon's (until the RT system), but I switched to Canon because of the 20D.  I used a 5D II for everything, including sports and it worked (center point and crop).  I don't think the 6D is as crippled as you are saying because the 6D's AF is still better than the 5D II's, especially the outer points.  The 5D III solved almost all the things that I found deficient in the 5D II, and a lot of people did a lot of great photography with the 5D II.

The 5D II was an improvement on the 5D an the 5D III is an improvement on the 5D II.  The cameras evolve, but as I stated before, they are evolving in response to the changing market.  I am sure the that next wave of 1D/5D/6D will have a different set of features and differentiators as they do now, just as the 5D III had to improved AF-wise to accomodate the 6D.  No one expected the AF of the 5D III to be that close to the 1DX's.  The 6D has been designed and is selling.  I thought it was smart move for Canon to design something that could go lower than the 1800-2000 that the 5D II was selling at near the end of its life, and I'm guessing that the 6D's price could fall even farther and Canon could still be profitable.  Canon is doing better compared to its peers, which suggests it's getting more things right than not.  You and I individually do not affect marketing and engineering decisions.  Unfortunately, the design and feature set that will satisfy the most potential customers may still not be attractive to millions of other customers, of which you and I might be among.  You and I might not like a company's decision, but that does not make the decision that the company made wrong.

jeffa4444

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #128 on: December 17, 2013, 09:55:20 AM »
Another trip out shooting winter dawn sunrise landscape if the 6d keeps giving my 7d will only get brief outtings to car races or safaris, fact is proof is in the final images. Speccs are often misleading.
Canon 6d, 7d & 550d with EF-S and EF-L glass

BPLOL

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #129 on: December 17, 2013, 01:51:31 PM »
Nobody thought the 6D was well thought out for any level of photographer, except, maybe, those who do a lot of arranged and found still life on tripods and could use Live View most of the time.  That's too specialized for success.

WOW. So the 6D cannot be good for any pro work with its AF system?

Two pics I took some other day (I'm not claiming I'm a pro).  Went and used the outer points. JPEG OOC, using my 24-105L at 105mm (not very sharp lens, I know, but I love it anyway). The first one was taken handheld, 1/50.



Next one: it was dark, if I weren't using flash, I believe I would need ISO 12800 for a good exposure. Also taken at 105mm, but 1/100.



Last saturday I went to a birthday party and took the 6D with me. Kids were playing, so I thought that I would try its SERVO mode. Center point only, JPEG OOC (except for curves), silent mode (3 fps), at 105mm, ISO 1600, 1/1600s:









Subject was running 3.4 meters away (and came to 2.7m on it's closest picture). AF settings to prioritize focus.

Seems good to me. Until now, I cannot say the 6D is holding me back.

Marsu42

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #130 on: December 17, 2013, 02:16:41 PM »
So the 6D cannot be good for any pro work with its AF system?

Did anyone really say that? If so, it's clearly incorrect - but your nice mock-ups demonstrate what you have to do: focus on a contrast part in good light so that the non-cross sensor point can lock on - or it will get unreliable, meaning sometimes it'll hunt. And in your shots, you toke a sane decision - track with the center point, and only the center point.

The thing about the non-center 6d points is that they're "nice to have" and a convenience, but hardly necessary: They only have f5.6 precision, meaning you shouldn't use them with a faster lens than for example your 24-105/4 and go for 100% crop viewing/printing. But at this dof, focus & recompose would most likely achieve the same result.

When outer points would become really necessary (tracking, fast lenses) they tend to fail on the 6d, meaning you'll get better results with center point focus & recompose as the outer points are so near the center anyway.

YuengLinger

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #131 on: December 17, 2013, 02:33:41 PM »
"WOW. So the 6D cannot be good for any pro work with its AF system?"

I sure didn't say that.  And I was NOT the first photographer to say the 6D was not well thought out.

Your sample pics of the woman rigidly posed and the little girl only show 1)  That the AF works for still life, and 2)  Out of 4 pics of the kid playing, you only captured two where we could see her face.  My guess is that was partly because of sluggish AF, but perhaps you had artistic intent, who knows.

My prediction:  The 6D will have one of the shortest production cycles of any Canon SLR.  Perhaps THE shortest.  As an emergency backup, if I could get it for a song, heck, I wouldn't throw it away--but I'd rather save my money for whatever Canon makes to replace this dog.

Like I said, Canon makes great cameras most of the time, I'm invested in their system, and I want the company to be strong.

Ford made the Pinto, a little disaster, but there were ardent defenders of it.  Somewhere there probably was a Yugo fan club.  And I know there are people still bitter that "New Coke" went down the drain.

Just because somebody CAN get something to work some of the time doesn't make that something a worthwhile product.

« Last Edit: December 17, 2013, 02:36:36 PM by YuengLinger »

Marsu42

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #132 on: December 17, 2013, 02:52:15 PM »
Nine points all cross point would not have threatened the 5D Mark III much, but would have encouraged a lot more people to make the move to FF and further commit to eos/ef.

Personally, I think *one* cross point with f2.8 precision would have been enough to redeem the 6d, and I agree Canon went over the top here with inter-company product differentiation and recycling used 5d2 parts.

I belong to two photography clubs, one a PPA affiliate, the other a great group of enthusiasts who produce great fine art and nature work.  Nobody thought the 6D was well thought out for any level of photographer

I take it your photography clubs are in Palm Springs or Bel Air :-) ... you're buddies are missing the point here, €3000 is a hilarious amount of money for a dslr *body* not only considering the absolute price tag, but what (better) lens you can get with the money saved if you go 6d. It is thought out for the level of photographer that can make do with sub-optimal gear an concentrates on the content, and that would include me. Speaking of which, the 5d3 is full of shortcomings, too - if you want adequate, go 1dx :->

My prediction:  The 6D will have one of the shortest production cycles of any Canon SLR.  Perhaps THE shortest.

My prediction: The exact opposite. The 6d is the "real" successor to the long-running landscape/still 5d2 and is comprised of a lot of old (and cheap) parts, unfortunately including the af system. It is only marketed as what it is by Canon, it excels in low light still shooting, and has more than "enough" resolution.

There is absolutely no reason for Canon to exchange it as long people keep buying it, and they will, as the af system's faults are not obvious at first sight, but the stunning iq of the sensor is. They might, just might "update" it with the dual pixel af, but keeping the rest about the same - if Canon exchanges and innovates, they'll do it with the 7d2, 5d4 and 1dxs.

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #132 on: December 17, 2013, 02:52:15 PM »

BPLOL

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #133 on: December 17, 2013, 02:54:36 PM »
Quote
The thing about the non-center 6d points is that they're "nice to have" and a convenience, but hardly necessary: They only have f5.6 precision, meaning you shouldn't use them with a faster lens than for example your 24-105/4 and go for 100% crop viewing/printing. But at this dof, focus & recompose would most likely achieve the same result.

I really wish I had a faster lens, but right now only 24-105L and 70-200L f4 IS (I believe the 50 f1.8 doesn't really count)

1)  That the AF works for still life

Yeah, it truly works. That's why I thought it was misleading to say that the 6D cannot be used the professional way. I understood that. Sorry, if it wasn't your intention.

Out of 4 pics of the kid playing, you only captured two where we could see her face.  My guess is that was partly because of sluggish AF, but perhaps you had artistic intent, who knows.

I was using silent mode. At 3 FPS, that was what I took. One burst. A little more than 1 second. That's not separated moments, but a sequence. I really don't think the 6D is a sports camera, but it can take action here and there with its center point. At 4.5 I would have got 2 more frames, I believe.

My prediction:  The 6D will have one of the shortest production cycles of any Canon SLR.  Perhaps THE shortest.


Sometimes I do think the 6D will stay where it is. I believe that when the 5D IV arrives, the 5D III will drop in price, so if you want performance you have to pay a little more. Want to go FF? We have the 6D, the 5D III for a little more, and for a lot more 5D IV. Right now, I cannot see a 6DII eating 5DIII sales.

YuengLinger

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #134 on: December 17, 2013, 03:09:11 PM »
BPLOL, I came off as a bit too strident. 

I think, overall, the 6D is a decent camera, but the thread started with a discussion of its AF, which, right from the start, ticked me off, and that is the feature I've been stuck on.

It clearly has an excellent sensor and good build.  I haven't read about problems with metering.

One thing I often overlook is the number of photographers with good enough eyes not to rely on AF points all over the place.  But when it comes to still life, I think Live View is wonderful, and from what I understand, Live View doesn't depend on AF points at all--it is a different system.

My whole point, over which I began to hyperventilate a little, is that Canon let down a great number of customers and prospective customers.  The 6D has eloquent apologists.  I'd be an arrogant donkey to scoff at somebody for buying what they can afford, but I think for what was being charged when the 6D was released, Canon could have at least matched the 9-points systems already available on the 50D and 60D.

Your sample shots are nice to look at; I was only commenting on whether they did much to showcase the AF.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2013, 03:11:23 PM by YuengLinger »

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Re: 6D autofocus capabilites: let's bust some myths about it
« Reply #134 on: December 17, 2013, 03:09:11 PM »