EOS R AF with 1.2.0 firmware

Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,107
655
Hi!

It’s been bugging me a bit for a while and almost turned into real frustration every now and then so I gotta ask;

Is it just me who finds the EOS R AF to have taken a turn for the worse with the 1.2.0 firmware?

Where it before was impossible to miss I now find it to miss more even with no movement. I also tried everything with my kids on a trampoline and it just hunted when they did flips. Worked okay just up and down, but I could’ve used One Shot for that and it wouldn’t miss.

Is it more prone to miss now? I think so at least...

Please chime in if you have any observations to share.
 

Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,107
655
hmm, can you descibe some specific scenarios in which you've used it that caused trouble so that I can try replicate and see if I get the same problem?
I guess all tracking of kids running or being active. When running I constantly hit the upper body throwing the face oof. And on a trampoline I just didn’t work at all. So any more or less dramatic change in subject size in the VF or unexpected movement doesn’t work well.

I thought I knew how to adjust the AF settings, have used that type of adjustment since it first came out, 1d3(?). But with the R it doesn’t seem to do anything other than just hit the background faster, but doesn’t improve hitrate for intended subject..

And also people standing when I ahoot them at a distance. Perhaps also backlight or fluorescent light seems quite a bit worse now then with the old firmware.

Can one downgrade?
 

privatebydesign

Would you take advice from a cartoons stuffed toy?
Jan 29, 2011
7,704
799
119
Interesting. I have now used two different R's and an RF with the 24-105 f4, 28-70 f2 native R lenses and a mixture of EF lenses with three different adapters, I don't know what firmware versions they were but I haven't been impressed with the AF on any of them when compared to the 1DX MkII, specifically acquisition time and tracking performance unless the subject is a large part of the entire scene.

Not saying it is a fair comparison just saying so far I am not impressed with the AF on the mirrorless cameras from Canon.
 
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Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,107
655
Interesting. I have now used two different R's and an RF with the 24-105 f4, 28-70 f2 native R lenses and a mixture of EF lenses with three different adapters, I don't know what firmware versions they were but I haven't been impressed with the AF on any of them when compared to the 1DX MkII, specifically acquisition time and tracking performance unless the subject is a large part of the entire scene.

Not saying it is a fair comparison just saying so far I am not impressed with the AF on the mirrorless cameras from Canon.
I have been very impressed regarding pretty much everything, especially acquisition time. That said I use very fast primes that are not generally epic fast to focus so perhaps that shows less of a difference between the R and the 1dx2. Maybe I also would’ve seen a bigger difference using the 70-200 L II?

But, my comparison is between the R previously and the R now, and I feel it’s not as good now.

What do you use for AF setup for say, soccer or that type of movement?
 
Mar 14, 2012
2,284
165
I have been very impressed regarding pretty much everything, especially acquisition time. That said I use very fast primes that are not generally epic fast to focus so perhaps that shows less of a difference between the R and the 1dx2. Maybe I also would’ve seen a bigger difference using the 70-200 L II?

But, my comparison is between the R previously and the R now, and I feel it’s not as good now.

What do you use for AF setup for say, soccer or that type of movement?
I like the R for portraits (better hit rate for the eyes/face than the 5D4), but I hate it for sports. I tried using the 100-400 II on the R but I eventually switched back to the 5D4. I usually set my focus point about 1/3-1/4 (closer to the edge) but auto/face detect does not work well because there are multiple kids in frame. There isn't a good way to select and track the subject reliably especially when his face is turned away from the camera. The R tends to default to the center, but that is rarely where my subject is. I then swapped over to selecting the AF point, and I tried using it like I would with the 5D4. Hit rate was better, but the slower frame rate and the VF lagginess made the experience much worse (harder to track). Lagginess when I bring the camera to the eye (from my hip, which is when the rear screen is active) to lagginess when I'm taking pictures. It was actually interesting seeing how Fro Knows photo uses the mirrorless bodies because he goes for shots where the subject is in the center or where there tends to be one person in the frame. I rarely shoot that way because the kids tend to clump a LOT more.

I knew when I bought into the R that it would be this way, and I was OK with it. Before I had a 5D3 as a backup, but I never used it if the 5D4 was also available. Now, I use both the 5D4 and the R. I like RF glass, and I like the R for portraits. I prefer the 5D4 for travel (I have more EF than RF glass, plus it has GPS and longer battery life), but I'm reminded how much better face AF/eye AF is than the phase detect points. I was taking pictures of my daughter on the last day of school when she got off the bus with the 5D4. She threw up her arms in joy that school was over. I was using the 84L IS, and the point I selected momentarily tracked her arm during a couple frames in the sequence as it passed in front of her face. The R wouldn't have done that. Once the pro R comes out that can compete with the 5D4/1DX2/A9, then I'll be really tempted to go all in on the EOS R ecosystem.
 

Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,107
655
I like the R for portraits (better hit rate for the eyes/face than the 5D4), but I hate it for sports. I tried using the 100-400 II on the R but I eventually switched back to the 5D4. I usually set my focus point about 1/3-1/4 (closer to the edge) but auto/face detect does not work well because there are multiple kids in frame. There isn't a good way to select and track the subject reliably especially when his face is turned away from the camera. The R tends to default to the center, but that is rarely where my subject is. I then swapped over to selecting the AF point, and I tried using it like I would with the 5D4. Hit rate was better, but the slower frame rate and the VF lagginess made the experience much worse (harder to track). Lagginess when I bring the camera to the eye (from my hip, which is when the rear screen is active) to lagginess when I'm taking pictures. It was actually interesting seeing how Fro Knows photo uses the mirrorless bodies because he goes for shots where the subject is in the center or where there tends to be one person in the frame. I rarely shoot that way because the kids tend to clump a LOT more.

I knew when I bought into the R that it would be this way, and I was OK with it. Before I had a 5D3 as a backup, but I never used it if the 5D4 was also available. Now, I use both the 5D4 and the R. I like RF glass, and I like the R for portraits. I prefer the 5D4 for travel (I have more EF than RF glass, plus it has GPS and longer battery life), but I'm reminded how much better face AF/eye AF is than the phase detect points. I was taking pictures of my daughter on the last day of school when she got off the bus with the 5D4. She threw up her arms in joy that school was over. I was using the 84L IS, and the point I selected momentarily tracked her arm during a couple frames in the sequence as it passed in front of her face. The R wouldn't have done that. Once the pro R comes out that can compete with the 5D4/1DX2/A9, then I'll be really tempted to go all in on the EOS R ecosystem.
Thanks for chiming in, much appreciated !

The only laginess that really bothers me with the R is the shutter release. One would assume in 2019 it was released in an instance, but compared to a 1-series it feels like 2008 point and shoot.
 

JoTomOz

EOS M50
Nov 21, 2018
39
24
www.flickr.com
Taking photos of my toddler there have been a couple situations with challenging lighting where I was surprised it struggled compared to before the firmware updates. I can’t say I’ve noticed much if any improvement using eye-AF with servo as opposed to relying on face detect.
 
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Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,107
655
Taking photos of my toddler there have been a couple situations with challenging lighting where I was surprised it struggled compared to before the firmware updates. I can’t say I’ve noticed much if any improvement using eye-AF with servo as opposed to relying on face detect.
Thank you for that, I agree wholeheartedly and it makes me feel a bit more sane :D
 

Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,107
655
I tried something today from an old 1dx setup that worked REALLY well...

Tracking Sensitivity to -1 and Accel./decel. Tracking to +1 and +2 depending on the movement. Auto switch to 0.

I used tracking with face and eye activ.

It tracked my kids beautifully. Best hitrate so far.
 

mkamelg

I'm New Here
Feb 1, 2015
11
6
Poland
Viggo is a Danish name. You are a Dane? If so, click here https://www.canon.dk/support/consumer_products/products/cameras/digital_slr/eos-r.html?type=firmware

Why did I lower the firmware version?

I bought my copy of the camera at the end of May. The camera had a pre-loaded firmware in version 1.1.0. Immediately uploaded to the camera firmware in version 1.2.0 without checking how it works with firmware in version 1.1.0.

On firmware in version 1.2.0 the camera freezes at random ("random" is the key word in this case) moments, it is related in some way to the power management system.

What does the problem look like?

In the camera menu under the tab with the key in position 2 I have selected „Power saving" and under „Power saving" I have set "Display off", "Auto power off" and "Viewfinder off" for some values (on example 15 sec., 1 min., 1 min.).

In the camera menu under the tab with the key In position 4 I have selected „Display settings” and under „Display settings” I have set "Display control” to ”Manual" and "Manual display” to „Screen”.


With these settings taking pictures using the LCD display, sometimes the LCD display does not want to go to sleep and consequently the camera does not want to turn off which of course causes excessive consumption of the battery's energy.

The only thing that helps in this case is:

1. Having assigned to some button under the tab "C.Fn4: Operation" under "Customize buttons" function "Switch between VF/screen” and then switch with this button briefly to the EVF and back on the LCD display.

2. Turning the camera completely off using the dial on the left side of the camera (OFF position) and turning it on again (ON position).

I tested it with EF-EOS R and control ring EF-EOS R adapters, all of mine EF lenses from brands like Canon, Zeiss, Yongnuo, Rokinon, memory cards from brands like Sony, SanDisk, Delkin Devices and two brand new original Canon LP-E6N batteries. Currently I do not have lenses with RF mount.


The camera and the adapters were already at an authorized Canon service center and they did not detect any problems with all these devices. Well, my problem appears in a random way so they could not detect anything.

I hope that this downgrade will help me in something. Now, after returning to the firmware in version 1.1.0 I noticed (but maybe it's just my illusion), that Face Detect + Tracking and Eye Detect AF is more sensitive and noise level (on example for ISO 6400) is slightly smaller than when firmware in version 1.2.0 is installed.
 
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Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,107
655
Excellent! Thanks for sharing and the detailed explanation.

Viggo is a danish name yes, but I’m only close to Denmark, in Norway. I can read danish so the link gave me what I needed. Will be very interesting to try it out. Thanks again!
 

mkamelg

I'm New Here
Feb 1, 2015
11
6
Poland
This downgrade did not help me at all, the above-mentioned problem still exists also on firmware in version 1.1.0. For me it looks like it is some firmware bug. The problem disappears when in the camera menu under the tab with the key in position 4 I have selected „Display settings” and under „Display settings” I have set "Display control” to „Auto” so when I returned to the factory settings. I returned to firmware in version 1.2.0.

By the way, you wrote here https://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?threads/eos-r-first-impressions-post-your-hands-on-impressions-here.35840/page-8#post-752082

No, it affects the ability to freeze action. With any silent LV or silent mode enabled I couldn’t get sharp shots with any movement, including camera shake, no matter the shutter speed. I hated the output of the camera until I actually disabled anything silent. It now works properly.
If this camera is on the table, there’s no differences between image quality if you using „Silent LV shoot.” option set on „Disable” or „Silent shutter” option set on „ON”. So try to don’t move when you trying to take pictures with any silent modes. When I take pictures of objects that are NOT moving having camera in my hands and using these two options mentioned earlier, difference in sharpness almost doesn’t exist.

You are also wrote here https://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?threads/when-is-it-safe-to-use-the-silent-shutter.36121/#post-757958

LED lights are the worst offender, but other artificial light sources may cause this also.

It’s the nature of full or half electronic shutters, worse with fully electronic.
I did some test.

Camera: Canon EOS R
Firmware: 1.2.0
Lens: Canon EF 50 mm f/1.8 STM
Shutter mode: Silent shutter
Shutter speed: Various
Aperture: f/2.0
ISO: Auto ISO
Light source: https://catalog.tungsram.com/lamp/compact-fluorescent-integrated/stick/f=stick-t3-mini-10-000-hours-upgraded-design/p=71500/d=0/?r=emea (220-240V 50/60Hz 105mA)



There are also a number of other problems with electronic first curtain etc, like the horrible bokeh or sort of motion blur artifacts, more dof etc.

To me, electronic shutters in any shape or form is useless, absolutely useless. And the fact that the R has Mode 1 silent LV as default is ridiculous ....
„Silent LV shoot.” option set on „Mode 1” is nothing but trouble, avoid at all cost especially if you care about the bokeh effect.

Few quotes from https://phillipreeve.net/blog/limitations-of-the-electronic-shutter-function/

But someday I came across the claim that using the EFC can have bad influence on the bokeh at certain combinations of shutter speed (faster than 1/1000s) and lens (fast aperture).

At 1/8000s there is not only a huge influence on bokeh but it even looks as if the image plane is being considerably tilted. I failed to find any explanation for the tilt, I can only tell you 1/500s is the fastest shutter speed where I think the differences are negligible.
I did some test.

Camera: Canon EOS R
Firmware: 1.2.0
Lens: Carl Zeiss Planar T* 1.4/50 ZE
Shutter speed: 1/8000 sec
Aperture: f/1.4
ISO: 250



The first frame (the brightest) is "Silent LV shoot. Disable", the second is "Silent LV shoot. Mode 1" and the third (the darkest one) is "Silent shutter ON".



Camera: Canon EOS R
Firmware: 1.2.0
Lens: Carl Zeiss Planar T* 1.4/50 ZE
Shutter speed: 1/8000 sec
Aperture: f/1.4
ISO: 4000



The first frame (the brightest) is "Silent LV shoot. Disable", the second is "Silent LV shoot. Mode 1" and the third (the darkest one) is "Silent shutter ON".



Camera: Canon EOS R
Firmware: 1.2.0
Lens: Canon EF 50 mm f/1.4 USM
Shutter speed: 1/8000 sec
Aperture: f/5.6
ISO: 2500



The first frame (the brightest) is "Silent LV shoot. Disable", the second is "Silent LV shoot. Mode 1" and the third (the darkest one) is "Silent shutter ON".




Camera: Canon EOS R
Firmware: 1.2.0
Lens: Carl Zeiss Planar T* 1.4/50 ZE
Shutter speed: 1/500 sec
Aperture: f/1.4
ISO: 250

The first frame (the brightest) is "Silent LV shoot. Disable", the second is "Silent LV shoot. Mode 1" and the third (the darkest one) is "Silent shutter ON".



Camera: Canon EOS R
Firmware: 1.2.0
Lens: EF 70-300 mm f/4-5.6 IS II USM
Shutter mode: Silent shutter
Shutter speed: Various
Aperture: f/5.0
ISO: Auto ISO



What could be the conclusion? Never mix two different shutter modes for a photo session/on photo walks. Use "Silent LV shoot. Disable" (for something that moves) or "Silent shutter ON" (for something that does not move or move very slow) and never use "Silent LV shoot. Mode 1" if you care about the bokeh effect.
 
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justaCanonuser

Grab your camera, go out and shoot!
Feb 12, 2014
434
246
Frankfurt, Germany
I like the R for portraits (better hit rate for the eyes/face than the 5D4), but I hate it for sports. I tried using the 100-400 II on the R but I eventually switched back to the 5D4.
Thank you very much, Random Orbits, that's it for me. Since I use my Canon DSLRs for all sorts of photography, including birding with tele lenses, I decide to stick with them for a while and wait until Canon comes up with a ML that offers a more improved AF for action. That said, I think we should not forget that the "R" isn't exactly made for action. But the DPAF system should in principle enable Canon to come up with ML cameras that really can track fast moving objects.
 

Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,107
655
I’ve not had extreme success with the R plus RF50 for tracking faster’ish action, so I tried the RF85 tracking my son on his scooter, kicking away down a small hill, and it was very, very accurate wide open. Out of 15 shots I had two that was slightly off his face and locked on his shirt, but the other were all on his face. After quite intense testing with RF85 I find it better for AF than the RF50. Neither can track fast back and forth movement, and will completely loose focus on those playground items where for example a horse sits on a huge spring on the ground one can rock back and forth on. I tested on those since I had a reference with the 1dx2 there. The 35 L II with 1dx2 was very good, but far from perfect. The 24-70 II was best with 200 f2 and 70-200 II close second.

But when it comes to accuracy for everything else the R blows the 1dx2 out of the water with fast lenses.