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Author Topic: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?  (Read 18263 times)

Isurus

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No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« on: March 02, 2012, 08:16:18 AM »
From the specs it appears that the new 5D essentially shares the same viewfinder as the 7D and that interchangeable focusing screens will no longer be available (they also don't show up on the Canon site as they do with the 1D X). 

This is likely a deal breaker for me as manual focusing through the viewfinder with the standard focusing screen, and the 7D focusing screen, is practically impossible to do accurately with fast aperture lenses.  Specifically, Zeiss lenses will be much more difficult to use.  Anyone who claims otherwise isn't as critical of focus as I am, because when a viewfinder can show a DOF no wider than f5.6, getting critical focus at f1.2 requires trial and error at best.

Yes, you can still use LiveView, but that is only practical when shooting from a tripod (landscapes, for example).  It's too awkward to use LiveView in normal shooting conditions (for me anyway).

I'm sure I'm in the minority here, but I find this to be a bummer.

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No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« on: March 02, 2012, 08:16:18 AM »

te4o

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2012, 08:27:05 AM »
Isurus, I just read the same horrible info from the jeff ascough blog (http://blog.jeffascough.com/photographers/2012/03/canon-eos-5d-mark-iii-review.html#tpe-action-resize-387) where he writes about the 100% VF.

I am stunned too as I use solely CZ ZE lenses and was hoping to have that option here. BUGGER!
It says the AF fields are projected onto the focusing screen like in the 7D and 1DX. But there ARE user interchangeable focusing screens for the 1DX! Why not here?
Do you think we can rely on the improved AF for manually focusing our Zeiss glass?
Or do I have to buy Canon EF again...?
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Neeneko

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2012, 08:58:51 AM »
This would probably be a deal breaker for me.  While I use AF occasionally, for the most part I am doing MF and would like the option for a focus screen.

nvsravank

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2012, 09:11:24 AM »
Why do you say the viewfinder does not go wider than 5.6? I thought until the time of the shutter, the aperture is fully open and so should be at the F level you are trying to use.
Maybe i am mistaken, but can you explain a bit more please.

alipaulphotography

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #4 on: March 02, 2012, 09:50:29 AM »
I too saw this and am a little disheartened. All my lenses currently have AF abilities on them, but I manual focus a lot with stationary subjects. Especially portraits when I am trying to focus on the eye - this wouldn't be possible with the stock screen shooting at f/1.4.

Hmm. Can anyone see a work around?

DavidRiesenberg

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2012, 10:14:16 AM »
There are aftermarket screens for the 7D, so I am positive that they'll also be available for the new 5D.
http://www.katzeyeoptics.com/item--Canon-7D-Focusing-Screen--prod_7D.html

skitron

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2012, 10:19:07 AM »
FWIW, I've had pretty decent results using one of the programmable AF confirm chips on my Rokinon 35. With it you can depress the shutter button half way and then do manual focus until the body beeps and the selected focus point lights up.

One thing I noticed is that there is a hysteresis to it and for critical focus I set the MFA to be right when focusing from infinity to close. Set up this way, the MFA is consistently off focusing from close to infinity. But it could be set up to have it be the opposite, I just prefer to twist the focus this direction.

All in all a kind of quirky solution but pretty effective once you get the MFA dialed in and realize you just have to live with the hysteresis and always focus the same direction (based on how you set up the MFA). All of this said, no problem shooting at 1.4, but I do miss the split prism days.

Also FWIW, I was able to shoot my Sigma 50 1.4 the same way by switching it to MF.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2012, 10:23:49 AM by skitron »
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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2012, 10:19:07 AM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2012, 12:21:04 PM »
Why do you say the viewfinder does not go wider than 5.6? I thought until the time of the shutter, the aperture is fully open and so should be at the F level you are trying to use.
Maybe i am mistaken, but can you explain a bit more please.

That statement isn't really correct for the aperture - it's actually f/2.8.  The focusing screens in modern dSLRs are laser microetched to make them brighter, so they work better with slow lenses which are common these days.  One consequence of that is that the viewfinder shows the DoF of an f/2.8 lens even with lenses that are faster than that.  If you have a fast prime, test it yourself - use the DoF preview button as you stop down from wide open, and you'll see that the VF doesn't start getting darker until you hit ~f/2.8 (or f/2.5 with some lenses).  The high-precision Eg-S screen for the 5DII is a 'brighter' screen that shows the true DoF for fast lenses (but f/5.6 lenses are pretty dark, unlike with the stock screen).

I use an Eg-S on the 5DII, and the lack of a similar option for the 5DIII is very disappointing.  It's true that there will likely be 3rd party screens as there are for the 7D, but the focusing screen on the 7D is not considered user-replaceable, and doing yourself is a challenge, so most of the vendors that sell 7D screens also offer a service to swap them out.  Personally, I prefer the flexibility to easily change them out on-the-fly - Eg-S when I'm going to be using a fast prime, Eg-A (the stock screen) when using a slower zoom, like the 28-300L where I might be outdoors or inside. 
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Axilrod

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2012, 01:17:38 PM »
Did they actually say there wouldn't be any focusing screens for it or that it couldn't use them?  It may just be too early for them to have shown up in stores....
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neuroanatomist

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2012, 01:22:12 PM »
Did they actually say there wouldn't be any focusing screens for it or that it couldn't use them?  It may just be too early for them to have shown up in stores....

It can't use them.  The 5DIII specs state, "Focusing Screen: Fixed."  That's the same as the 7D, whereas the 5DII, 1D X, etc., state, "Focusing Screen: Interchangeable."
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Track40

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #10 on: March 02, 2012, 01:27:30 PM »
Chuck Westfall of Canon posted on http://www.robgalbraith.com/bins/content_page.asp?cid=7-11675-12364 "Unlike the 5D Mark II, the 5D Mark III's focusing screen is not interchangeable."

Looks like the standard screen that it's going to come with is a grid-style focusing screen... thank g-d.  I shoot architecture, and without a grid, I'd be dead meat, and this would have been a deal breaker.


neuroanatomist

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #11 on: March 02, 2012, 01:32:04 PM »
Looks like the standard screen that it's going to come with is a grid-style focusing screen... thank g-d.  I shoot architecture, and without a grid, I'd be dead meat, and this would have been a deal breaker.

No, the standard screen has no grid.  The grid is part of the 'intelligent viewfinder' and is a feature that can be turned on/off.  It's generated by the transmissive LCD that sits next to the focusing screen.  The 7D and 1D X have a simliar feature - unlike most cameras, you can actually completely turn off the AF points displayed on them.
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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #12 on: March 02, 2012, 02:53:48 PM »
Looks like the standard screen that it's going to come with is a grid-style focusing screen... thank g-d.  I shoot architecture, and without a grid, I'd be dead meat, and this would have been a deal breaker.

No, the standard screen has no grid.  The grid is part of the 'intelligent viewfinder' and is a feature that can be turned on/off.  It's generated by the transmissive LCD that sits next to the focusing screen.  The 7D and 1D X have a simliar feature - unlike most cameras, you can actually completely turn off the AF points displayed on them.


Oh Wow.  I guess I'll take that.  Can you make the grid any finer... ala make it more dense?

Do you by chance have any idea 1) whether there are any more "grid" options while in Live View and are shooting stills?  And 2) whether the grids stay on the screen when you zoom in 5x or 10x?  On the MKII, the grid would always go away when you zoom the Live View. 

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #12 on: March 02, 2012, 02:53:48 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #13 on: March 02, 2012, 03:04:11 PM »
Can you make the grid any finer... ala make it more dense?

Do you by chance have any idea 1) whether there are any more "grid" options while in Live View and are shooting stills?  And 2) whether the grids stay on the screen when you zoom in 5x or 10x?  On the MKII, the grid would always go away when you zoom the Live View.

No idea for the 5DIII.  On the 7D, there's only one grid type in the VF, but there are two choices for Live View.
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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #14 on: March 02, 2012, 04:42:52 PM »
Can you make the grid any finer... ala make it more dense?

Do you by chance have any idea 1) whether there are any more "grid" options while in Live View and are shooting stills?  And 2) whether the grids stay on the screen when you zoom in 5x or 10x?  On the MKII, the grid would always go away when you zoom the Live View.

No idea for the 5DIII.  On the 7D, there's only one grid type in the VF, but there are two choices for Live View.

Do you know on the 7D whether the grid disappears from LiveView while you zoom in 5x or 10x (to check focus)?

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Re: No Focusing Screens for 5D MIII?
« Reply #14 on: March 02, 2012, 04:42:52 PM »