I actually wanted to point out my extensive article about 5D3 AF configuration but Dylan 777 was obviously faster...
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Cervantes, thank you for your reply. Here you can see three of my shots that day - http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=20239.0 At the bottom.
It's not so slow movemnet, actually is quite fast. I shot this with 6 fps (of course not like a machine gun, maybe only 3-4 shots)
The setings were: f/2.8, 1/2500 s and ISO 160-250
I shot this with 6 fps (of course not like a machine gun, maybe only 3-4 shots)
Keep in mind that a piece of advise from the article didn't work for me. At least at some non real shooting conditions.
More specifically: I have tried my 1.4XIII on my 500mm 4L IS II.
Nothing happened apart from the noise of a failed attempt to start focusing.
Something like a click and a very slight move of the focusing mechanism and then nothing.
Focusing distance was close and withing range (inside my house).
I turned "Lens drive when AF impossible" to ON and IT WORKED!
But to tell the truth I haven't tested the lens without a teleconverter and/or at the outside during day.
So I will repeat the test under more realistic conditions.
Tomorrow I'll shoot some action and I'd like to ask for some advice. Not BIF, but kayak competition (slalom). I suppose you imagine how does it look like.
I'd like to ask, if you recommend to shoot in single shot or continious mode? if the latter, then in which mode - high burst (6 fps) or low burst (3 fps). BTW, I'm using 5D mkIII.
And what should be an appropriate shutter time to freeze the motion? OK, it depends if subject goes toward me or pass me. I think, I'll shoot them coming toward me. But OK, I can experiment and check what time is necessary to freeze it.
I'm more interested about burst mode. I don't want to have million pictures and half of them soft, because AF wasn't able to refocus between each shot in 6 fps mode.
Currently I do not show much on the web (I should do more, my job eats lots of time). But here is a little selection of images I shot with my vintage EF 500/4.5 (made in 1995). Hope you enjoy it. Fortunately I am quite used to non-IS lenses so I am able to shoot it frequently hand-held. Such vintage glass works quite nicely with modern DSLRs, I enjoy in particular using it with my 5D3 (only 2x TC doesn't allow AF).
Cervantes: here a few more BIFs for you I shot with my old EF 500/4.5. Atlantic puffins are hard to catch, they are small, appear quite suddenly and dart with about 80 km/h. I am often really impressed how well my 5D3 manages to focus this lens - even its 1st generation USM drive isn't as fast as modern USM drives.
Possibly the most informative article I've had the pleasure to read on CR, very much appreciated.
I can see how your set up suggestions will/should help well in my Wildlife Photography, again, Thank You Cervantes.
When using a selected AF point and a registered AF point, my preference is to assign one to AF-ON and the other to the * button, so I can remove AF from the trigger button completely.
Cervantes, I didn't know that this exactly was included in a recent 1-DX firmware update, so we 5D3 users can really hope that Canon does the same service to us. Would be great!
I use both options you listed - depending on the situation. When light is changing fast (and unpredictable) I prefer Tv, otherwise M with fixed ISO to compensate exposure. My EF 500/4.5 gets wide open a little bit soft depending on the object's distance (still on a decent sharpness level for such old glass), so I often prefer to close it to f=5.0...
Look much forward to your next posts, Cervantes, you do a really great job for us forum readers! I wish you many more such brilliant shots you've shown here as examples.
cervantes, you are The Man. I've been searching for a succinct explanation of the 5D3's celebrated AF system with regards to BIF ever since I purchased the body a little over a year ago. Even the Canon tutorials on youtube are far less valuable than your advice. Thank you very, very much. I'm sure this took a fair amount of your time and those of us here on the forum appreciate it.
Your specific advice for AF settings was excellent, but I'd also like to hear your take on some other settings. As I work my way into shooting BIF, alone and without benefit of workshops or books...
..., I've concluded that keeping the shutter speed high enough and aperture wide enough can only be accomplished in Manual mode. Av invariably gives me an unacceptably slow shutter speed (motion blur) while Tv often fails to select an appropriate aperture. That means Auto ISO must jump in there to make sure my defined shutter speed and desired aperture results in a proper exposure.
As previously mentioned by yourself and others, we need Canon to give us a firmware update that allows Exposure Compensation when shooting in M mode and Auto ISO, especially with birds due to the overwhelming brightness of the sky. But given this handicap, would you still advise shooting M and using Auto ISO? And if so, what ISO limits do you like? If not, how else do you approach the speed/aperture/exposure/noise conundrum when it comes to shooting feathered rockets?
ONE MORE QUESTION
I have my C3 parked with the following settings for BIF (in addition to making changes to my AF and AF-ON per your excellent instructions), please review and offer suggestions as this is the fast-dial place from which I start: Manual mode, 1/1000, f/5.6, Auto ISO, AWB, AI Servo, Evaluative metering, High-Speed shutter, 1000X 32GB CF only (SD card removed to improve buffer dump), RAW
Note that I'm typically outfitted with a 5D3 body and a 400 f/5.6 L prime lens or sometimes my 70-300 L zoom, with or without a Kenko 1.4X teleconverter, on and off tripod. I'm saving for a 600mm, but alas, that may be a long wait...
Thanks again for offering your advice and for the helpful members who've chimed in with their 2 cents.
But there is an option to set ISO to auto in M mode. Did you mean you couldn't set ISO to one fix value (with fixed shutter time and f-stop) and then to "over exposed" for let say 1EV?
Thank you for your kind comments and recommendations. I did need to ETTR on the shot. Anyway, the 5D III AF is remarkable and I could not be happier with the purchase. This image was taken from the same sequence.
I will consider changing my online ID. You have a good point.
I don't understand what you're telling him here, about how the 'colorful' wing shows you that he didn't get the exposure quite right.
Yes, I would love to hear what you have to say about getting the exposure right.
This reminds me of one of the few weaknesses of my 5D3: spot and partial metering work much less reliable as on my 7D. This is an issue if one - like me - prefers M mode + Auto ISO, because then one can't compensate exposure with the thumbwheel. So, in critical situations I have to switch to a selected ISO number to be able to get e.g. a bird in the sky correctly exposed, but then I lose the wonderful flexibility of Auto ISO, which is in particular great when shooting wildlife in quickly changing light conditions. If someone has a good tip for me, I'd appreciate sharing it .
Manual exposure compensation + Auto ISO would be really a great new feature. This is one of my few wishes for a future firmware update (should be fixable with software).
Did you do some post-processing? If yes, what?
Great Article. Thank you. I read it last week on Thursday and set CF1 up with the multiple button zone af control. On Friday, I happened to be at a good place during a good time. I captured a sequence that included this shot thanks to your recommendations. I just received my 5D III through CLP last Tuesday.
@Cervantes: Did you ever try to shoot birds or any kind of sport with AF Expansion mode including 4 or 8 additional surrounding points? I never know which mode is better - Zone or AF Expansion. Can you tell why AF Expension mode would not be appropriate for birds or sports?
Otherwise, very good and informative article!
Thus, if one is tracking a bird with AF Point Expansion in AI Servo mode, this would be quite similar to Zone AF. And try to have the main AF point near the eye, let's say. Or not?
Great article, especially the undocumented features. I need to try this but theoretically if you enable orientation linked af point you should also be able to set independent af-on settings for portrait or landscape mode...that is have two selectable zone af points in portrait mode and zone af and 61pt in landscape mode.
And you can further customize your use modes by recording your ideal BIF fast action settings to custom mode 3 at the end of the mode dial. This will let you switch to this mode quickly without looking and will also save all of your customized settings....one may actually want to use different af and af-on settings for shooting a wedding or portraits or even bif with a different lens.