Missing focus with 5D4 a little too often

drolo61

EOS 80D
Aug 31, 2012
109
0
Hamburg - Germany
Valued community,

I run a semi-professional career as a child photographer for the business of my wife (www(dot)pickapooh[dot]de)

All the pictures you see there are mine.

I do work with a 5D4 since it came out, and after swapping from the 5D3 I seem to miss focus a little too often for my liking.

I use the center AF point in spot mode only, BB focussing, manual exposure and AF servo almost exclusively.

Keeping track of the little ones is no easy task and I believe I can tell user error from "funny behavior".

In a total static subject there is a couple of soft images interlaced with razor sharp ones.

My current assumption is, that AF servo needs a minimum change in subject distance to re-focus while on target.
If I defocus and re-focus, it seems to become better, but that should not be the point.

I have given up on wide open apertures but even with 5,6 to 8 there is more than the occasional loss of critically sharp images.

Any ideas, what might explain the behaviour?
Gear is AMFDed and I consider to send it to recalibration after this round.

Thankful for any feedback, input, solutions

Best
drolo61
 

JuanMa

Canon New F1
May 10, 2018
59
46
Spain
@ drolo61, Love your photos, natural attitudes and beautiful colours. I went from the 5D mark II to the mark IV and I also use a 7D mark II very often. Most used lenses are the 24-70 II, the 70-200 IS II and 100mm 2.8 L which I often use at their maximum apertures f2.8. The mark IV is by far the best of the 3 cameras at focussing and miss very few shots. I do a lot of portraits and pets photography for which the focus has to be locked in the the eyes most of the time. In fact the mark IV is my first camera i find his AF capacities to be ok.
The AF servo is constantly working and keeping the focus, so you might consider to send yours to Canon to check it.
 

AlanF

Canon 5DSR II
Aug 16, 2012
5,428
2,581
I also use AI servo, BBF and centre AF point, and find very reliable AF with the 5DIV, certainly better than my 5DIII. Seems your 5DIV has problems.
 

Mt Spokane Photography

I post too Much on Here!!
Mar 25, 2011
15,409
668
Use liveview if possible, AF will be more accurate and you can view at 5X on the screen (if you are on a tripod).

If you are using the small spot size on the center point, it may not be exactly where you think its at, the red square and the AF sensor can be misaligned. Try using a larger focus area, or face AF and see if it picks up and focuses on the face. My 5D MK IV never has a problem with accurate AF, when I miss its virtually always my fault. I use live view whenever possible.
 

StoicalEtcher

EOS 80D
Jan 3, 2018
140
56
Yorkshire
If you are using the small spot size on the center point, it may not be exactly where you think its at, the red square and the AF sensor can be misaligned
Mt Spokane,
That's very interesting - I have occasionally wondered at how I've missed focus (5Diii) on portraits, where I was sure I had the eye picked out - and maybe your point is a reason - is this something you have read about, or a personal finding? (I'm not challenging your opinion, just interested to read more if possible).
Thanks
Stoical
 

Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,097
652
Probably not what you want to hear, but this is one of the main reasons I switched from DSLR’s to mirrorless.

ALL bodies I’ve had, mainly. 1-series, starts to miss and need alignment and adjusting after a couple of years. After 4-5 years they started to miss so much I switched for the new model and did the same thing over. Incredibly annoying.

I believe that without mirror and prism etc and the separate AF sensor the problem is down to an absolute minimum...
 
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Valvebounce

EOS 5D SR
Apr 3, 2013
4,199
166
52
Isle of Wight
Hi StoicalEtcher.
I’ll answer this for you, I’m sure I have seen this in print, with a picture of the AF and the problem is very visual, though I cannot find it now!
I did find these two items on the Canon Professional Network pages which help understand the issue.
https://cpn.canon-europe.com/content/education/tipsandtricks/1110.do
https://cpn.canon-europe.com/content/education/tipsandtricks/1021.do
I hope this helps.

Cheers, Graham.

Mt Spokane,
That's very interesting - I have occasionally wondered at how I've missed focus (5Diii) on portraits, where I was sure I had the eye picked out - and maybe your point is a reason - is this something you have read about, or a personal finding? (I'm not challenging your opinion, just interested to read more if possible).
Thanks
Stoical
 

StoicalEtcher

EOS 80D
Jan 3, 2018
140
56
Yorkshire
Hi StoicalEtcher.
I’ll answer this for you, I’m sure I have seen this in print, with a picture of the AF and the problem is very visual, though I cannot find it now!
I did find these two items on the Canon Professional Network pages which help understand the issue.
https://cpn.canon-europe.com/content/education/tipsandtricks/1110.do
https://cpn.canon-europe.com/content/education/tipsandtricks/1021.do
I hope this helps.

Cheers, Graham.
Graham,
Many thanks for digging these out.
Cheers
Stoical