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Author Topic: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii  (Read 8436 times)

brianleighty

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Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« on: July 09, 2012, 05:58:11 PM »
Alright, so I'm sure this has probably already been discussed but I wasn't able to find it with the search tool so if someone can find it and forward the thread to me then I'd be fine with that. If it this hasn't been discussed then I'd like to get some input. I got the 5d Mark ii fairly recently and would like to put in a better focusing screen. I changed the one in my 50D and really liked the improvement in MF. I guess my question is should I go with the Canon EG-S or are there better options? I've read people talk about split prism or the like but my main worry is with having to recompose after focusing and then being out of focus. My other question is I got the 24-105 with it as well. Anybody have experience with how dark this gets with the Canon EG-S. On my 50D f/4 lenses aren't too bad. It's more at 5.6 where things start to get too dark. Can anybody concur this is the same here? Thanks.
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Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« on: July 09, 2012, 05:58:11 PM »

wickidwombat

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2012, 06:34:40 PM »
I had the EGS screen, its ok but I changed it out for a custom made brightscreen and it is the bomb

really bright and with the split prism its really easy to tell when focus is on target

unless you have really good eyes the EGS still wont be enough
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brianleighty

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2012, 10:21:24 PM »
Thanks wicked. Do you know of any options between the $30 price range of the Canon screen and the one you got? I think by the time I'm getting up in that price range I might be better off putting it towards a better lens since most of the lenses I will benefit from with this are ones I currently rent.
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nightbreath

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2012, 01:33:15 AM »
And one question from me  :)

Which one is better for people photography? I'm shooting at wide apertures, so it'll be great to see where the focus really is. And I was also considering possibility to use Zeiss lenses on weddings ;D
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vbi

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2012, 07:02:49 AM »
I have used the BrightScreen on my 5D2...nice and bright, split prism, seems to be accurate. Expensive but worth it.
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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2012, 08:21:43 AM »
I use the EGs screen on my 5Dc. It's great and never take it off. I prefer the EGS as I can focus on something at the edge of the frame without focus and recomposing.

brianleighty

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2012, 08:38:53 AM »
And one question from me  :)

Which one is better for people photography? I'm shooting at wide apertures, so it'll be great to see where the focus really is. And I was also considering possibility to use Zeiss lenses on weddings ;D

Yup that's my same thing, I'm renting the Zeiss 50 Makro for a wedding in September and would like to make sure I'm getting accurate focus.
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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2012, 08:38:53 AM »

bklein61

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2012, 09:14:03 AM »
I am also thinking of using a Ziess 50mm 2.0 marko.  I am wondering if the Brightscreen will work on slower lens also.  I have a 70-300 L is and would prefer not be switching focusing screens out all the time.

underjammer

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2012, 03:12:02 PM »
I have a Katzeye split-prism for my 7D, and I had a cheap-o $15-ish one from ebay for my 400D/xti.  The cheap-o one had a dual-diagonal split-prism, which worked very nicely, while the Katzeye has a horizontal one, which is often hard to see..  I also have a KPS 1.3x multiplier eyepiece thing, and if you ask me, it helps with focus-screen accuracy 10 fold.  I go from eye-strain without it to super easy to know what's actually in focus with it.  I would highly recommend one.

I actually prefer the microprism part of the focusing screen, so if I could pick up a $35 EG-S screen for the 7D I would in a heart beat.  I imagine I would like it.  And $35 is not much of an investment (and if I hated it, I'd just sell it again..)  Never used one, though, so I can't tell you the difference.

My Katzeye is *not* "optimized" for brightness (the OptiBright thing), by the way, so 100% of the screen actually shallow depth of field.  I can use outside the microprism area to focus, but it does get dim out in that area in low light.

Oh right..  As for your f/4 lens, I'd agree and say that from my experience with my screens, f/4 is OK, as long as you've got decent light.  f/5.6 is do-able, but borderline frustrating..  If I could only work with that outer part of my screen, I probably would be unhappy at f/4, but again, no idea how it compares to the EG-S.  I imagine if the 50D is OK at f/4 for you, then the 5D should be just as fine, or maybe be a bit better, since you technically have more light getting to your eye, due to the larger prism?  (Feel free to tell me I'm wrong there..)
« Last Edit: July 10, 2012, 03:19:31 PM by underjammer »

tphillips63

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #9 on: July 10, 2012, 05:22:27 PM »
Are you swapping the screen yourself or did you have it installed?
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wickidwombat

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2012, 08:31:23 PM »
And one question from me  :)

Which one is better for people photography? I'm shooting at wide apertures, so it'll be great to see where the focus really is. And I was also considering possibility to use Zeiss lenses on weddings ;D

the bright screen hands down winner the center split pea is super clear even with very fast glass it feels like zooming in in live view when looking through it.

EG-S is a little better than standard but not mind blowing
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wickidwombat

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2012, 08:36:25 PM »
Are you swapping the screen yourself or did you have it installed?

its a 2 minute job to do yourself, make sure the area is dust free
use a blower to blow out the snsor area and mirror before you do it
and do not touch the screens with skin, you wont get the oil off
you just use the tweezers to pop the tray release and it drops down
then use the tweezers to lift the old screen out of the tray by the little tab
then pop the new screen in (the brightscreen is a tighter fit thean the stock screens)
so that the prism is centered
the use the tweezers to push the tray back up into position where it will latch

i changed the screen setting back to EG-A with the brigthscreen and metering seems fine (i only use spot metering)
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jacktaka

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2012, 10:35:51 PM »
Hey guys, I think I may have the perfect solution.

This Taiwanese guy takes the official Canon screens made for the EOS-1 bodies and modifies them so they fit in the 5D2. Here's the poorly-translated site:
http://www.focusingscreen.com/index.php?cPath=21_98&osCsid=33b66bf04e08da46312fd2e1941d50e6

The glory of these is that they are made of the gorgeous Eg-S glass, and have split images or microprisms in addition. This means you can focus in the center and recompose, or focus using the rest of the screen. And after shipping they cost about $100, no tax. I paid by PayPal and it came in about a week. Mine came in the original Canon box that they sell their EOS-1 screens in. This company also gives you instructions and additional tools for adjustments, like tweezers, finger gloves, etc. You can use the custom function for Eg-S metering, which is also nice. However, the small split image in the center can mess up your metering.

The only downside is that mine was loose in the 5D screen holder. This means it will take a lot of tries if you want to get it dead-center (it's super easy to tell, because the AF points will make anything off-center look lopsided).

I can't compare it to the Brightscreen directly, but I can't imagine how it could be better in any way. ƒ/4 lenses are definitely usable. With my 35mm ƒ/1.4 lens, it is still a little difficult to get dead-on focus with the split unless there is a sharp line to focus on, and it is also hard to focus dead-on with the Eg-S glass if the target is flat. 3D targets are easy to focus perfectly on because you can clearly see the plane of focus move back and forth as you adjust.

If I could go back in time, I might have just gotten the plain official $40 Eg-S screen without the split image, because I use f/1.4 and f/1.2 glass. If your subject is a person or anything busy, it's often impractical to use the split. Maybe the microprism is more useful. If you're shooting anything with sharp lines, though, the split image is awesome.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2012, 10:38:13 PM by jacktaka »

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2012, 10:35:51 PM »

brianleighty

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2012, 07:45:23 AM »
Thanks for your input jacktacka. Sounds like an interesting option but it does seem like some people say the prism isn't the perfect solution either. One either thing I read somewhere was a viewfinder magnifying attachment. Anybody ever messed with something like that? What's your thoughts there?
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7enderbender

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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2012, 10:17:25 AM »
Hi there,

I tried the EG-S screen in my 5DII. I personally didn't like it. It was ok with my fast primes but not with the 24-105.

I haven't tried any of the custom solutions yet and would be concerned about the metering being thrown off. I put the factory screen back in and decided to live with it. Any time I pick up my AE-1p with its beautiful large and bright screen and split prism I can only shake my head and wonder why nobody has figured this out for modern DSLRs yet.
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Re: Focusing screen for 5d Mark ii
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2012, 10:17:25 AM »