July 28, 2014, 02:44:58 AM

Author Topic: 5D iii with 135 mm 85 mm 50 mm wedding in servo poor focus any ideas?  (Read 5926 times)

Valvebounce

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Hi Lukemke.
We're you using Back Button Focus? Either way have a look at this posting for more ideas on problems with AIServo focus.
http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=20883.0

Cheers Graham.

Hi there.
I was shooting a wedding yesterday. 5d iii worked great with one major exception. When shooting couples dancing (iso around 5000 1/200 s ). it was not able to deliver a sharp image (maybe one sharp in 10 shots) lenses used 50 f/1.4 , 85 f/1.8,  135 f/2L and 16-35 f/2.8 L II. Servo mode tried differnet cases different settings (points, first image priority etc). It was not a motion blur. Does anyone have an experience working with these lenses in servo?  I mean I tried everything with no result. Are these lenses simply too slow for tracking?  Was it too dark?  Thanks.
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Marsu42

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Are these lenses simply too slow for tracking? 

Without putting too fine a point on it, if it doesn't work with these lenses and the 5d3 af your technique might need some improvement. For comparison, try a 6d and 100L :->

Was it too dark?

Yes, indeed, was it too dark? Your 5d3 af works up to -2LV, what was your light value (exposure time, aperture, iso of some shots)?

risc32

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i can say without any reservations it's not the lenses. whatever you use won't net you 100% keepers, but unless something silly is happening you should be getting something north of 80%. i also used to shoot sports and still do with my kids. clearly sporting events requirements vary, but i've never seen any sporting event like a wedding reception. it's good exp though, just different, like all the other niches in photography. in my exp i would say that if my 5dmk3 can get a lock on something at a wedding, it doesn't really lose it. i really only struggle when it's so dark i can't get anything out of it. then i switch to MF and shoot it up. sometimes it is just silly dark. i'd like to know what aperture values you were using, and maybe a rough estimate of shooting distance. either that was just to much of an ask, your 5d settings are funny, or it's defective. you liked what the 1dx could do, was that a wedding, or people running around on a sunny day?

jdramirez

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Unless I'm shooting in burst at a moving target, I usually don't use ai servo.  I put the camera in one of the first two options and take single shots. 

As for the lenses af motor being too slow, the 135 can be used in a sports capacity and it is not to slow the 85 L and mkii are slow... but not the f1.8.  I haven't used the fifty in a while, but I would say it should be fine shooting dancers.
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Honestly, I've never liked using fast primes in AI servo (24L II, 35L, 50 f/1.4, 50L, 85L II).  The 135L has much faster AF speed than the other fast primes, but my lenses of choice for that type of shot are the 24-70L f/2.8 II and the 70-200L f/2.8 IS II.  I find that those two zooms are MUCH better for AI servo than the primes listed above, so yes, the lens can definitely affect AI servo performance.

The other issue is low light/low contrast targets.  AF accuracy is poorer at lower light levels in servo.  The -2 spec for the 5DIII is for statics.  It can take over 1 second to lock in at something at -2 EV, so tracking accurately at low light levels is going to be VERY hard.  I tend to use a single point (rather than point expansion) in crowds to more easily have the AF focus on the target I want.  Also focus on high contrast edges (light colored shirt/dark jacket) and as RLPhoto suggested, use only the cross points -- they work better when the lighting gets tough.

Besisika

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I am wonderring if you can replicate the situation, if yes, compare them with 100mm L (just rent it if you don't have one).
I shoot both boxing and wedding. For boxing 135 at f2 and 85l both 1.2 and 2 work and I get above 80% keeper on 5d MK iii. I struggled too during wedding dances. It is darker. I tried the 100mmL macro and it performs much better. I don't know if it is the lenses I have but I would try.
I moved up to 1DX and I get better results using the same technique and same config (focus first). I still shoot with the 100L during wedding dance and bouquet tossing, though. I shoot burst, first the throwing bride then the ladies catching the bouquet so I can't take a chance. The camera doesn't choke with the macro and the flashes don't miss.
Maybe it is worth a try for you.

jasonsim

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Yep.  My experience too.  I used to shoot indoor ice skating with a 5D III and 135mm f/2.  Too slow to keep up.  The 1Dx does a little better with the 135mm f/2L, but not much.  To get the best Servo performance with your 5D III you need to use 24-70mm f/2.8L II and 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II.

Hi there.
I was shooting a wedding yesterday. 5d iii worked great with one major exception. When shooting couples dancing (iso around 5000 1/200 s ). it was not able to deliver a sharp image (maybe one sharp in 10 shots) lenses used 50 f/1.4 , 85 f/1.8,  135 f/2L and 16-35 f/2.8 L II. Servo mode tried differnet cases different settings (points, first image priority etc). It was not a motion blur. Does anyone have an experience working with these lenses in servo?  I mean I tried everything with no result. Are these lenses simply too slow for tracking?  Was it too dark?  Thanks.
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Marsu42

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I am wonderring if you can replicate the situation, if yes, compare them with 100mm L (just rent it if you don't have one). I shoot both boxing and wedding. For boxing 135 at f2 and 85l both 1.2 and 2 work and I get above 80% keeper on 5d MK iii. I struggled too during wedding dances. It is darker. I tried the 100mmL macro and it performs much better.

Interesting, looking at the 100L performance on 6d I really didn't expect that as the macro lens af speed is crawling slow. On the other hand, this might be the very reason it performs ok in difficult situations vs. standard lenses like 135L? The 85L seems to have to move too much glass to be a fast af performer.

lukemike

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These are tricky lenses to master and it takes a number of years to fully get the best out of them. So I wouldn't expect a fast prime newbie to pick a set up....rock up to a wedding / paid gig and expect stellar results. This is why my 2nd photographer grew into her primes proportionately to her skill growth in the wedding industry.
...


May agree with you that getting the right photo composition or light takes years to master. But not the focus. If getting a sharp image from a given lens takes years to master it is a crappy lens that does not work right. It's simply not. What's the point of getting around its limitations if you can get a product that does not have them. It took me one day to master 400 f/2.8 on D4 or 70-200 f/2.8 IS II on 7D, Most of the images were sharp in most conditions. What struck me is that the setup that I assumed will work spot on in focus dept. (5D and theses lenses) did not. Saying it's the way things are is living in the past and making life more complicated.


Hi Lukemke.
We're you using Back Button Focus? Either way have a look at this posting for more ideas on problems with AIServo focus.
http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=20883.0

Cheers Graham.


Yes - af-on button on the back for focusing, shutter release button only for matering and shutter.



Quote

Yes, indeed, was it too dark? Your 5d3 af works up to -2LV, what was your light value (exposure time, aperture, iso of some shots)?


Looking at the shots that may be the reason. How do you calculate Light Value?

i can say without any reservations it's not the lenses. whatever you use won't net you 100% keepers, but unless something silly is happening you should be getting something north of 80%.  ... . i really only struggle when it's so dark i can't get anything out of it. then i switch to MF and shoot it up. sometimes it is just silly dark. i'd like to know what aperture values you were using, and maybe a rough estimate of shooting distance. either that was just to much of an ask, your 5d settings are funny, or it's defective. you liked what the 1dx could do, was that a wedding, or people running around on a sunny day?


ISO around 5000 exp time 1/100 - 1/200, what do you think? 85@ f/2.0, 135@f/2.0, 50@f/2. Images properly exposed, no motion blur. Distance: different, usualy to get a couple in the frame whole body or waist up.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2014, 06:35:55 AM by lukemike »

Marsu42

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Looking at the shots that may be the reason. How do you calculate Light Value?


-2LV on 5d3 is the "stops working" stage, but it might get much slower near that dim light. For further information,
just ask KR :-) ... http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/ev.htm

Maximilian

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What was your depth of field? 
...
Maybe you were shooting at a DOF too shallow 
I guess this was the point. What aperture were you shooting with?
If wide open, I suppose it was a DOF problem with the dancers moving OOF during shutter release.

In such conditions I swich to M mode with auto ISO (enhanced, if needed) to have full control of aperture and shutter. And then I have to close the aperture as much as needed.
Normally this works. But sometimes it is just to dark for the AF.
sometimes you have to close your eyes to see properly.

djh901

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I had all kinds of problems with my 5D3 when I first got it.  Dont know if this helps but I put it back in default *factory setting* several times.  Then went back and reset everything.  Never had anymore focus problems.  Also if one little software switch is in the wrong setting the camera will focus wrong. 

Maximilian

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something else, not mentioned yet (if I didn't miss it):
Did you AFMA the used lenses?
sometimes you have to close your eyes to see properly.

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jaayres20

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I didn't take the time to read the other posts so if this has already been mentioned then I am sorry.  Servo mode is not a great idea for a dark first dance.  I am not confident in my 1DX having the best success for that either.  You should always avoid using that when it is dark if possible.  Always use one shot so that the AF assist beam on the flash will help you focus.  I have a 1DX and 5D3 and even though they have great AF performance, it is not good enough to shoot sharp images consistently in the dark.  The AF assist beam will work wonders for you, but is only available in one shot focus drive mode.  Also, focus on something light, like the grooms white shirt next to his black jacket.  Also use the center AF points.  They are the most sensitive.     

gsealy

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IMO with it being a critical 'once only' situation then it is best to calculate a good DOF beforehand and set up the camera appropriately. Yes, it is great to get those great narrow DOF bokeh shots, but the risks are higher too.  And additionally, counting on a chip in the camera's processor is risky too.  It could decide to focus on anything! 

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