Settings R3 for team sport

May 17, 2022
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Hi everyone, since a few weeks I am the proud owner of a Canon R3. I really like the camera but as many others am struggling a bit with all the new focus and subject tracking options. I have 2 questions

1. When I have Subject Tracking on and I select my cat for example, I half press the shutter button for it to lock focus and start following the cat. Seems to go well for a second or 5 but then all of a sudden the camera also starts detecting random other objects in the frame for no reason (Like a lamp which isn't even moving). Any ways to keep your focus on the subject you chose?

2. what are more ideal settings for a team sport like volleybal? I can imagine subject tracking works fine on a one player sport like gymnastics. But when there are 10 players in the field, what would be the ideal focus points to set? Eye tracking will certainly be problematic since there are multiple players in the field. Would it be best to just turn subject tracking off all together and start working just in Servo mode like I used to do with the 1Dx III ?
I have a volleybal shoot tomorrow to practice a bit with the camera but would love to read your opinions on best settings to test out.

Thanks!
 

neuroanatomist

I post too Much on Here!!
CR Pro
Jul 21, 2010
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In the AF2 menu, try adjusting the Tracking Sensitivity to –1 or –2, that makes the subject more 'sticky' to the AF system.
 

Red Dog

I'm New Here
Mar 22, 2020
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I've been using the R3 extensively for sports since December 21. I've found that the tracking is least effective when theres multiple people in the field of view. Even with the sensitivity turned down, it will often jump off to some similar target that comes close to the selected subject. I have subject tracking customised to the * button and use the AF-ON with single point AF for the majority of action. I only use the * where I'm confident that the tracking will hold, ie when theres only one subject in the frame. I would tend not to use the tracking feature for team sports, but it is effective for individual athletes or managers photos. Motorcycle racing again is excellent, but I've found that the people tracking works more effectively than vehicle tracking as it locks unto the riders head rather than the bike and give much better image results.
 
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May 17, 2022
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Yeah I figured subject tracking would not work as well in team sports or multiple people events.
So how do you use the * button exacly? Do you hold it all the time when following your subject, or do you just press it once so the camera switches to subject tracking mode and then follow with the shutter release button half pressed?
I actually never customised the * button

Thnx for your reply!
 

Red Dog

I'm New Here
Mar 22, 2020
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Its customised to work as a back button AF as you described. You select the target, press and hold the * button and the focus square locks unto the targets body and then locates the head and locks unto it, whilst you follow its movement in the viewfinder. Takes a bit of time to get used to moving the lens so you don't cut off legs or heads as the focus square moves around the screen.
 

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May 17, 2022
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haha yeah I sort of experienced that when I once tried the Sony A9....I kept trying to keep the tracking point in the middle of my frame (like I was used to with a focal point) which lead to all kinds of crazy compositions. It really is a different way of working and thinking....hope I will master it quick because I don't like shooting with the feeling of not having total control over the outcome
 

Red Dog

I'm New Here
Mar 22, 2020
10
15
Thats why I use centre point AF 99% of the time for team sports. You control the AF point, not the camera. If you were to enable subject tracking in the main menu, the camera selects the target and whilst it might hit the right subject a lot of the time, it will often pick up the wrong target at the very time when you need it least and that can be costly.
 
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