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Author Topic: Reikan FoCal  (Read 3364 times)

hippoeater

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Reikan FoCal
« on: May 23, 2012, 04:52:08 PM »
Curious about purchasing this software. Anyone here have much experience with it? How easy is it to use? How complicated is setup and calibration? What kind of results can I expect from my camera and lenses?

Thanks! Would love to hear others feedback before I make the purchase.
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Reikan FoCal
« on: May 23, 2012, 04:52:08 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2012, 05:12:59 PM »
It's great.

Want more details?  Try the 7-page thread on it:

http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=2477.0
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hippoeater

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2012, 05:19:16 PM »
I hope this helps out with my 501.2 - the focus seems to be just a tad bit off :/
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neuroanatomist

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2012, 05:27:43 PM »
FoCal makes AFMA easier.  AFMA will help when you're shooting with the lens wide open.  Because the 50L has focus shift, shooting close subjects with the aperture stopped down a bit is challenging, and AFMA won't help with that.
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bkorcel

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2012, 06:13:20 PM »
Make sure your camera is supported first.  5DM3 has semi automatic support until they integrate the just released SDK by Canon.

Hopefully that will come about real soon.  It's still useable but you have to manually select the AFMA values between tests.  A pain but it works.  Most of my lenses only took about 20-30 minutes each to run through.  I would imagine automatic would take about 10 minutes or less.

DB

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2012, 07:57:41 PM »
FoCal makes AFMA easier.  AFMA will help when you're shooting with the lens wide open.  Because the 50L has focus shift, shooting close subjects with the aperture stopped down a bit is challenging, and AFMA won't help with that.

You used the same term 'focus shift' on a different thread wrt 24-70mm mk 1. Does this mean that getting FoCal primarily for this lens (I'm happy with the sharpness on my other lenses) would be pointless?

snowweasel

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2012, 08:49:49 PM »
Make sure your camera is supported first.  5DM3 has semi automatic support until they integrate the just released SDK by Canon.

Hopefully that will come about real soon.  It's still useable but you have to manually select the AFMA values between tests.  A pain but it works.  Most of my lenses only took about 20-30 minutes each to run through.  I would imagine automatic would take about 10 minutes or less.

I got some unexpected values on my 5DM3, which I chalk up to operator error. On my 7D (which does have automatic support), I recall it only taking 5-7 min and working great! I ended up with good adjustments on the 5DM3, but if you can wait until Canon releases the SDK and they can add auto adjust, it is much simpler.

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2012, 08:49:49 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2012, 09:01:45 PM »
You used the same term 'focus shift' on a different thread wrt 24-70mm mk 1. Does this mean that getting FoCal primarily for this lens (I'm happy with the sharpness on my other lenses) would be pointless?

If so, I apologize.  The 24-70 has an issue with field curvature, not focus shift. Field curvature is when the lens doesn't project a 'flat' image circle onto the focal plane. Focus shift, which the 50L suffers from, is when stopping down the lens changes the focal point. Since focusing is done wide open, that's an issue. AFMA will correct for f/1.2, but focus will still result in slight backfocus between f/1.4 and f/4 or so, with close subjects.  Live View doesn't have the issue. 
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llcanon

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #8 on: May 23, 2012, 11:15:39 PM »
Just did the 70-200 II, 16-35, and my 10-year old 28-70 tonight using the Pro version. Excellent software. The 70-200 II only needed +1 on the T end. But the 16-35 and 28-70 required -5 to -8 for both W and T ends. Use one testing distance for 28, 35 and 70mm. Did not follow the 50xfocal length distance recommendation.

neuroanatomist, I read your article on the-digital-picture.com. Excellent write-up. You were mentioning 25xfocal length testing distance, which was also mentioned widely elsewhere. I was wondering if you've seen  appreciable difference by using different testing distances. Thanks.

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Photography-Tips/AF-Microadjustment-Tips.aspx

scottkinfw

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2012, 12:28:28 AM »
Very easy to install, set up, and use.  I like the pro version, because it gives optimum aperture for a given lens.

Rich, the guy who wrote the software, is very responsive, and helpful.

sek

Curious about purchasing this software. Anyone here have much experience with it? How easy is it to use? How complicated is setup and calibration? What kind of results can I expect from my camera and lenses?

Thanks! Would love to hear others feedback before I make the purchase.
sek Cameras: 5D III, 5D II, EOS M  Lenses:  24-70 2.8 II IS, 24-105 f4L, 70-200 f4L IS, 70-200 f2.8L IS II, EF 300 f4L IS, EF 400 5.6L, 300 2.8 IS II, Samyang 14 mm 2.8 Flashes: 580 EX II600EX-RT X 2, ST-E3-RT
Plus lots of stuff that just didn't work for me

cliffwang

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2012, 12:52:37 AM »
Just did the 70-200 II, 16-35, and my 10-year old 28-70 tonight using the Pro version. Excellent software. The 70-200 II only needed +1 on the T end. But the 16-35 and 28-70 required -5 to -8 for both W and T ends. Use one testing distance for 28, 35 and 70mm. Did not follow the 50xfocal length distance recommendation.

neuroanatomist, I read your article on the-digital-picture.com. Excellent write-up. You were mentioning 25xfocal length testing distance, which was also mentioned widely elsewhere. I was wondering if you've seen  appreciable difference by using different testing distances. Thanks.

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Photography-Tips/AF-Microadjustment-Tips.aspx
70-200 is amazing.  My 70-200mm MK2 even doesn't need to be adjusted.  However, my 24-70mm require -8 to -13 adjustment.
Canon 5D3 | Samyang 14mm F/2.8 | Sigma 50mm F/1.4 | Tamron 24-70mm F/2.8 VC | Canon 70-200mm F/2.8 IS MK2 | Canon 100mm f/2.8 Macro L | Canon Closed-up 500D | 430EX | Kenko 2x Teleplus Pro 300 | Manfrotto Tripod

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #11 on: May 24, 2012, 02:59:59 AM »
Just bought and tried the pro version with the lenses listed in my profile and all my lenses are adjusted to frontfocus.

For example my 24 I had at +16 and where very happy, so I wanted to see what FoCal would do, it adjusted it to +9 and it's way in front.

The 50 L, oh my, that is the reason I will be sent to an early grave. The ACTUALLY told me, directly from mailing with FoCal, that the 50 L is almost too inconsistent to adjust. They say to try to adjust it 7 EV instead of 10. I didn't help.

It was at +6 and Focal said it should be at 0, and now it's way in front as well.

I had my 85 L at +8 and FoCal wanted it to be at -5, and now it's way in front.


The WORST PART of this whole deal is; It's stated that phase AF is very hard to get right. No matter how much you adjust, it's always going to be very much different from shot to shot (IF you defocus completely between each shot).

So what I have learned is that no matter if you own the baddest that is offered by the biggest brand and paid a kid and a kidney, properly focused images are only guranteed at ONE specific distance in ONE specific light.

"Adjust to your most used distance"

Maybe I will go back to the 5d2 and the Eg-S and some good manual lenses, because AF isn't good enough. What's the damn point in having 61 af points when you can only use the center one, go out on the edges and the 50 is waaaaay in front compared to center.

I'm not sure if the FoCal is to blame, maybe it's just the AF of 2012, but it frontfocused all my lenses. I got better results by just trying myself.

That being said, I will try under daylight and not under artificial light today. I'll update this message if the results change dramatically.

*UPDATE*

So, forget what I said, this software is the greatest thing ever invented. Test invironment is crucial!!!

Here's what NOT TO DO!:

Use artificial light.
Approx distance
Not sturdy setup (tripod)

Here's what TO DO!:

Use daylight bright shadow (10 EV)
Use a very sturdy tripod
Use the correct distance 50x focal.

My god, the 50 L works now, it's the first time I have ever been able to use it for anything. What a lens. The AF isn't the most consistent, but at least now I know if it misses, it's because it misses. Not because of misalignment, and that is A LOT easier to accept.

I had set my 35 to -9 from weeks of testing, I had set my 24 to +16, and FoCal set them to, guess what? -9 and +16.
The 50 I was way off, the 85 L was set in between the value from my first test and my own setting, so I guess that's perfect also.

Buy this software if you have fast lenses, it will save you two heartattacks, 15 years lifeshortening and suicidal moments.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2012, 04:51:07 AM by Viggo »
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Janco

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #12 on: May 24, 2012, 06:57:13 AM »
You used the same term 'focus shift' on a different thread wrt 24-70mm mk 1. Does this mean that getting FoCal primarily for this lens (I'm happy with the sharpness on my other lenses) would be pointless?

If so, I apologize.  The 24-70 has an issue with field curvature, not focus shift. Field curvature is when the lens doesn't project a 'flat' image circle onto the focal plane. Focus shift, which the 50L suffers from, is when stopping down the lens changes the focal point. Since focusing is done wide open, that's an issue. AFMA will correct for f/1.2, but focus will still result in slight backfocus between f/1.4 and f/4 or so, with close subjects.  Live View doesn't have the issue.

For lenses that are known to have field curvature/astigmatism issues, would it make sense to choose another focus point than centre point for AFMA? Or maybe test with centre point and then with one of the edge focus points and choose a value in between? And if I'm right, there are also lenses with slightly curved DOF, I personally don't think there would be a possibility or need to adjust test settings for that 'issue', since that might be very slight subtleties, but does anyone consider things like that as well? Are there lenses (maybe wide-angles if focused quite near) where it could have an effect on the image indeed? I have only started with AFMA some time ago, so there's another question :-) I've read a post some time ago where someone tested a zoom lens (24-70 mkI, I think) on different zoom positions, and through the zoom range it went from + values to - values and back to + values, does AFMA make sense anyhow in such cases? Thanks for some insight....

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #12 on: May 24, 2012, 06:57:13 AM »

Janco

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #13 on: May 24, 2012, 07:21:38 AM »
.... And if I'm right, there are also lenses with slightly curved DOF, I personally don't think there would be a possibility or need to adjust test settings for that 'issue', since that might be very slight subtleties, but does anyone consider things like that as well?....

Oh, curved DOF would result in a curved image projected to the sensor as well. Now that was difficult!  ::)
Or let's say it is basically the same... the above statement might be not exactly right as well...
« Last Edit: May 24, 2012, 07:23:28 AM by Janco »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #14 on: May 24, 2012, 10:14:53 AM »
neuroanatomist, I read your article on the-digital-picture.com. Excellent write-up. You were mentioning 25xfocal length testing distance, which was also mentioned widely elsewhere. I was wondering if you've seen  appreciable difference by using different testing distances. Thanks.

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Photography-Tips/AF-Microadjustment-Tips.aspx

25x is often mentioned because that's the recommendation for the LensAlign tool.

I've found differences of up to 5 units going from 25x to 50x focal length - generally, the differential is greater with fast lenses, longer focal lengths, and on FF.  So, when selecting an AFMA setting, it's important to consider the distance(s) you normally shoot that lens at - and it's likely going to be a compromise.

For lenses that are known to have field curvature/astigmatism issues, would it make sense to choose another focus point than centre point for AFMA? Or maybe test with centre point and then with one of the edge focus points and choose a value in between?

I have only started with AFMA some time ago, so there's another question :-) I've read a post some time ago where someone tested a zoom lens (24-70 mkI, I think) on different zoom positions, and through the zoom range it went from + values to - values and back to + values, does AFMA make sense anyhow in such cases? Thanks for some insight....

No, I would not consider field curvature when doing an AFMA.

Yes, you can certainly get different values through the zoom range.  With the 1D X and 5DIII, you can select an AFMA value for the wide end and a different value for the tele end, with other bodies you have to pick just one compromise value.  If a zoom lens goes from positive at one end to negative in the middle back to positive at the other end, AFMA will be a real compromise - I might be inclined to send such a lens to Canon for a mechanical adjustment.
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Re: Reikan FoCal
« Reply #14 on: May 24, 2012, 10:14:53 AM »