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Author Topic: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)  (Read 5150 times)

linuxtuxguy

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5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« on: March 25, 2012, 12:34:40 PM »
As many of you know, LCD screens produce polarized light. As such, when you wear polarized sunglasses there is a certain angle where if you look at the screen, you will not be able to see anything. This is normal and expected.

On many Canon cameras the angle of view that causes issues is portrait orientation. On the 1D series cameras, it is a diagonal portrait orientation, which is an angle you are not too likely to be holding the camera at.

Well, on the 5D mark III it is the normal, horizontal angle you are most likely to be using!!!

Yes, that means if you are using polarized sunglasses and are holding the 5D mark III in your hand in the default orientation, YOU WILL BE UNABLE TO SEE THE REAR LCD SCREEN!

I am shocked that they did it this way, since they have gotten it right on every other camera I have tried.

Again, this is only an issue if you are wearing polarized sunglasses. But if you do routinely wear such sunglasses, it is a HUGE issue.

Otherwise I find the rear screen to be quite nice.

linuxtuxguy

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2012, 12:57:34 PM »
If I shoot water or something else reflective, then yes I would remove my sunglasses. But if it's just a bright day and I am out and about with my camera, it is far more likely that I will have the sunglasses on while shooting.

The biggest annoyance as far as reviewing goes is the instant preview that pops up immediately after taking the shot. I am unable to see those while wearing sunglasses. Obviously if I am going to take the time to review a number of shots it is easy to just flip up my sunglasses.

I'm not claiming that this is a dealbreaker about this camera. But it is a HUGE annoyance, and one that was unexpected.

Canihaspicture

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2012, 01:00:42 PM »
Dude.. not all sunglasses are polarized in the same way. Have you simply tried to use another pair of sunglasses..

Obviously you don't quite understand how polarized lenses works or this would be a non-issue. You have a $3500 camera and you are complaining that the camera is not compatible with your $20 sunglasses. Buy a more expensive pair of glasses with diagonal polarization and all your problems will go away.

linuxtuxguy

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #3 on: March 25, 2012, 01:08:57 PM »
I have a better sense of how polarized lenses work than most people. I have never seen sunglasses advertised as being polarized in any other orientations.

What I am complaining about is that this issue is new to this model camera; all other cameras that I have used do not suffer from this issue at this orientation.

linuxtuxguy

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #4 on: March 25, 2012, 01:36:20 PM »
Canihaspicture, I assure you I am not trolling.

Just because I have one negative thing to say about a camera does not mean I am anti-Canon, or even anti-this-particular-camera. Remember, I did just plunk down quite a bit of money on this body.

The fact is I DO like Canon, and have thousands of dollars worth of gear. I added up the point value of the gear I have, and I would EASILY qualify for platinum level CPS membership.

I have not shot with the 5D mark II, so if it is also an issue with that camera, it is news to me.

The entire point of my original post was to INFORM people that there is an issue with the rear screen of the camera under VERY SPECIFIC circumstances. I am fully acknowledging that for MOST people, this is a non-issue.

At this point I think I have said everything I reasonably can on this particular topic. I'm going to go back out and enjoy shooting with my 5D mark III. Just because there is this annoying issue doesn't mean the camera isn't still fun to use and doesn't diminish the quality of the images it produces.

I am still as a whole HAPPY with my purchase, and am just trying to discover the limitations of the body to improve my ability to shoot with it.

Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #5 on: March 25, 2012, 04:52:30 PM »
It can be a big issue.  apple has patented a circularly polarized lcd screen to help with the problem.  sounds like its useful for a camera lcd as well.
 
I don't use polarized sunglasses, but its not a issue to laugh at.  They are vertically polarized, if someone has a link to diagonal polarized glasses post it.
 
 
http://www.digicamhelp.com/camera-features/camera-parts/lcd-and-sunglasses/
 
http://www.powerpage.org/2011/05/27/apple-looking-to-create-outdoor-sunglasses-friendly-lcd-screens/

epsiloneri

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #6 on: March 25, 2012, 05:13:59 PM »
I agree it's a bit annoying... the days I'm likely to wear polarising sunglasses are also the days when I'm likely to use a polarising filter on the lens, and those don't play well together, meaning I usually shoot without sunglasses, which can be uncomfortable in bright light. I shoot about as much portrait as landscape, so the LCD polarisation wouldn't be worse whatever the orientation. Hm, perhaps time to invest in non-polarising sunglasses?

ArtL

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #7 on: March 27, 2012, 08:21:23 AM »
I have not seen the display of the 5D3 yet; however, the problem you are facing is surely caused because of their upgrading the display type from TN (45 degree polarization) to an IPS-type (common in smart phones).  The problem with IPS is that its polarization angle is near 0 or 90 degrees which will put it in conflict with polarizing sunglasses.  There are a couple things you can do to try and improve this situation.  First, if you add a screen protector (or most plastic films) to the back of the camera, it will somewhat mess up the polarization.  Different films will have different impacts (you might even try food wrap or various clear tapes).  The problem with this approach is you will see rainbow distortions across the screen when you look at it through your sunglasses (on the other hand, it won't be black). 

Another alternative is to find a quarter wave retarder to add to the back of the camera.  This would convert the light from linearly polarized to circularly polarized.  Once it is circularly polarized, the LCD should be dimmer (but not black) in all directions (about the same as if you look at the display with it tilted at 45 degrees).  The problem is getting a quarter wave retarder as a consumer . . ..  A common place for them is on the back of circular polarizers and you could line up a circular polarizer with the display (so the quarter wave plate is facing out).  If you want to keep the polarizing sunglasses (which I agree are nice), perhaps a better approach would be to Google "quarter wave retarder" and see who sells them (http://www.polarization.com/polarshop/ claims to sell it by the foot for $25, you can see a picture demonstrating the effect at their website with a monitor and a polarizer at 45 degrees).  You may be able to get a sample if you contact a manufacturer as well.  Best of luck.

CanineCandidsByL

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2012, 11:17:15 AM »
I'm actually surpised you guys would wear sunglasses when doing photography. I don't know of any that are neutral, so they will create a color cast to your eye. And popping them off to take a picture will give you an impression of the oposing color.  (To see effect, stare through red filter for 1 to 2 minutes, then stop looking through filter and look at something white....it will appear green.)

However I do agree that a removable polarizing screen cover would have been preferable. I'll just live with it.


« Last Edit: March 27, 2012, 11:26:21 AM by CanineCandidsByL »

JerryKnight

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2012, 11:49:54 AM »
Dude.. not all sunglasses are polarized in the same way. Have you simply tried to use another pair of sunglasses..

Obviously you don't quite understand how polarized lenses works or this would be a non-issue. You have a $3500 camera and you are complaining that the camera is not compatible with your $20 sunglasses. Buy a more expensive pair of glasses with diagonal polarization and all your problems will go away.

First of all, I like my eyes, so I'm wearing sunglasses whenever I can. I rarely shoot with them on, but if it's bright out, I'll take them off for a second. (I'll admit to the goofy sunglasses-arm-in-mouth pose) The main reason I do this is for the viewfinder eye relief and brightness. Now I can add screen polarization to the list.

Second, I've never heard of any other polarization orientation on sunglasses, and frankly, I'd rather wear non-polarized than glasses polarized at a non-vertical orientation. The whole reason to wear polarized glasses is because reflections from horizontal surfaces tend to be horizontally polarized, so only vertically polarized glasses will do any good cutting down the glare.

The original iPad had the same problem. With polarized sunglasses, you can only use it horizontally. But my Garmin GPS has the screen polarized diagonally, so it rarely blacks out.

This is an issue, but it's not a serious issue, since I already don't shoot with sunglasses actually on.

jlev23

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2012, 12:26:24 PM »
we learned along time ago not to where polarized glasses in the film industry, dating way back when the arri 435's came out and had a digital controller, at certain angles it would go blank. my old buddy learned the hard way, when he stopped a whole production with a famous singer about to sing because he thought the screen went blank, he yelled cut cut! then took off his glasses and realized what had happened and pretended he was fixing something.
so, the lesson is, and again we learned this a decade or more ago, don't get polarized glasses, there is just too many digital screens out there. get a nice pair of folding persol steve queen glasses, they are great to travel with too!
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awinphoto

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #11 on: March 27, 2012, 12:37:01 PM »
I definitely can understand the issue, but I personally hate wearing sunglasses while shooting... I guess to me I want to make sure my eye see's as much of the light as possible... and viewing the LCD with sunglasses, to me, wouldn't be doing the screen justice as it may or may not give me a different impression of the captured image (may be brighter but looks better with the sunglasses on, etc...)  Perhaps as I get older and my vision goes to S$% and I need glasses I'll understand more... Otherwise if new glasses wont change anything then holding the camera in a different orientation or tilting your head like an owl may be your only solace if glasses is a must.   ;) ;)
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swampler

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2012, 01:09:59 PM »
Thanks for the heads up. I haven't yet shot with my sunglasses, but on my 50D, I can't view the screen in portrait mode with them, so a little disappointing to hear I can't wear my glasses with my 5D.

kiniro

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2012, 01:24:49 PM »
When I'm not wearing my regular glasses I wear my polarized sunglasses even when I'm shooting pics.  Guess it would be best practice for me to wear my regular glasses when taking pictures.  I have not looked at the LCD screen on my 5dM3 with my sunglasses on yet but I will give it a try and see what happens.

nikkito

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Re: 5D mark III rear screen design flaw (polarization)
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2012, 06:22:58 PM »
I'm actually surpised you guys would wear sunglasses when doing photography. I don't know of any that are neutral, so they will create a color cast to your eye. And popping them off to take a picture will give you an impression of the oposing color.  (To see effect, stare through red filter for 1 to 2 minutes, then stop looking through filter and look at something white....it will appear green.)

However I do agree that a removable polarizing screen cover would have been preferable. I'll just live with it.

Hell yeah. Taking pictures with sunglasses? Wtf?  ??? :o ::)
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