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Archive 2012 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!
  
 
rabbitmountain
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p.1 #1 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


OK this may strike you as odd, but I'm just not an early adopter and I've always been so pleased with my 5Dclassic that I didn't feel I needed to upgrade to the 5DmkII when it came out. I figured I'd upgrade to the 5DmkIII and skip the mkII.

However, somewhere in between came the desire to use a 50L and I did a test in my regular camera store with my 5Dclassic and the 50L. That was about two months ago. Turned out the centre point was most accurate, but I only got about 20% images that were sharp or close to sharp. The fact that the 5Dclassic and the 50L wasn't a great AF combo was written all over, so I conceded and started looking for a new body so I could shoot a 50L and get lots of keepers.

Because there has been a consensus about the 5DmkII AF not being an improvement from the 5Dclassic, I never thought of the mkII as an option to shoot a 50L. Just for the hell of it, when I was at the same store I asked to hold their rental 5DmkII + 50L for a couple of minutes, put in my CF card and shot away.

When I came home and loaded the images in LR 4.1, I was baffled at the results. I had 80% keepers! Granted, I used centre point only, but I had done the same with the 5Dclassic.

Conclusions?
As it is widely spread that 5Dclassic AF and 5DmkII AF are roughly the same, I would say there must be something strange going on. My 5Dclassic focuses very fast and reliably with all of my lenses (35L, 70-200mkII, 16-35mkII, 50/1.8mkII). It does very badly with the 50L. Then the 5DmkII focuses extremely well with the 50L. I must say that it's not the same 50L I used on the 5Dclassic as the one I used today on the 5DmkII.

Anyway based on what I shot today, I think I may be interested in a 5DmkII after all.

Your opinions?



Sep 04, 2012 at 03:58 PM
AGeoJO
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p.1 #2 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


I will try to make it short and sweet: you need to get the 5D Mark III.


Sep 04, 2012 at 04:24 PM
adamo99
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p.1 #3 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


It's no secret - the centre AF point on the 5DII is excellent, as it's helped along by six 'AF assist' points. It's the outer AF points that are completely useless in all but the best light and high contrast scenarios.

If the centre AF point is all you need, save your money and go with the 5DII. It has incredible image quality, and has pretty much every feature the average photographer needs.

Edited on Sep 04, 2012 at 04:31 PM · View previous versions



Sep 04, 2012 at 04:29 PM
Daan B
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p.1 #4 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


Glad to hear the 5D2 left such a positive impression. The 5D2 shares the same AF hardware as the 5Dc. There were some reports on AF software tweaks when the 5D2 came out. I have no AF issues with my fast primes on the 5D2. This doesn't include the 50L however. The 5D3 is a better camera, but you know that already. It is also much more expensive. If you use the center AF point mostly, the extra cash on the 5D3 is largely wasted IMHO. Sorry Joshua


Sep 04, 2012 at 04:30 PM
rabbitmountain
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p.1 #5 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


I just wonder why the tests came out as they did. It doesn't make any sense:

5Dc + 35L / 70-200mkII / 16-35mkII / 50 / 1.8mkII = perfect (centre point)
5Dc + 50L (copy one, new from the shelf) = bad
5D2 + 50L (copy two, used for rental) = very good

The 5Dc AF is good because it's good with my own lenses
The 5D2 AF is good because it's good with the 50L (copy two)
So maybe the 50L (copy one, new from shelf) is bad

Maybe my 5Dc focuses great with the 50L copy two? I'm inclined to go and find out...

One funny thing about the 5D2 I tested though: when I used AF, the image was perfectly sharp, but in the viewfinder it was OOF. It wasn't the eye dioptre. Maybe the focusing screen was loose or fitted awkwardly.

Edited on Sep 04, 2012 at 05:24 PM · View previous versions



Sep 04, 2012 at 04:46 PM
Gochugogi
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p.1 #6 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


rabbitmountain wrote:
OK this may strike you as odd, but I'm just not an early adopter and I've always been so pleased with my 5Dclassic that I didn't feel I needed to upgrade to the 5DmkII when it came out. I figured I'd upgrade to the 5DmkIII and skip the mkII.

However, somewhere in between came the desire to use a 50L and I did a test in my regular camera store with my 5Dclassic and the 50L. That was about two months ago. Turned out the centre point was most accurate, but I only got about 20% images that were sharp or
...Show more

I bought a an EF 50 1.2L in 2007 to use on my 5D and experienced basically the same problem as you. I did a lot better than 20% keepers with the center point (the outer points were 20% keepers!). But, too flaky for serious shooting. And, yep, bought a 5D2 in Spring 2009 and my keeper rate skyrocketed! In good light the outer points were very good and the center pt was dead on most of the time. The odd thing is, whatever AF tweaks Canon did--faster processor, improved algorithms--didn't make much different for my other lenses (they worked fine with both cameras), but worked a treat for the EF 50 1.2L.



Sep 04, 2012 at 05:02 PM
AGeoJO
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p.1 #7 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


Daan B wrote:
The 5D3 is a better camera, but you know that already. It is also much more expensive. If you use the center AF point mostly, the extra cash on the 5D3 is largely wasted IMHO. Sorry Joshua


Any time, Daan, any time . The main reason I suggested that to the OP was simple; he is currently using a 5Dc and possibly looking into skipping the Mark II by going into the Mark III. An upgrade from the Mark II may not be worth it for some folks but from the classic, absolutely. Yes, it is more expensive but no second guessing and why stop at the Mark II and possibly considering a further upgrade from there? Of course, I realize that YMMV but hey, you live only once and money alone doesn't mean much if you cannot spend it .



Sep 04, 2012 at 05:09 PM
rabbitmountain
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p.1 #8 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


The 5D3 is definitely for me, just can't afford it yet. I recently picked up a used 1DsIi for 999 Euros, but that didn't work out as the AF system was bad.

If I get the 5D2 now (sold my backup 40D already because I thought I'd be settled with the 1DsII) I'll have two near-identical handling cameras, one of which with good enough AF for a 50L. I can see what I do next year....



Sep 04, 2012 at 05:30 PM
rabbitmountain
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p.1 #9 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


Gochugogi wrote:
[...] bought a 5D2 in Spring 2009 and my keeper rate skyrocketed! In good light the outer points were very good and the center pt was dead on most of the time. The odd thing is, whatever AF tweaks Canon did--faster processor, improved algorithms--didn't make much different for my other lenses (they worked fine with both cameras), but worked a treat for the EF 50 1.2L.

That is very good to know, thanks for sharing. So how can a camera with seemingly unchanged AF system be so much better?



Sep 04, 2012 at 10:56 PM
rabbitmountain
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p.1 #10 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


AGeoJO wrote:
[...] why stop at the Mark II and possibly considering a further upgrade from there? Of course, I realize that YMMV but hey, you live only once and money alone doesn't mean much if you cannot spend it .

Because if the mkII can get the job done (driving the 50L i mean) then why spend more? Ever since I decided to start a photography business, acquiring gear isn't fun anymore, because I keep looking at spending money from a business point of view: return value. Gone is the era where I would get nice overpriced camera gear I didn't really need just for the hell of it



Sep 04, 2012 at 11:00 PM
 

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AgeOfEmpires
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p.1 #11 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


With a 5Dc on the way, looks like I won't be getting a 50 L any time soon...


Sep 05, 2012 at 03:03 AM
AGeoJO
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p.1 #12 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


rabbitmountain wrote:
Because if the mkII can get the job done (driving the 50L i mean) then why spend more? Ever since I decided to start a photography business, acquiring gear isn't fun anymore, because I keep looking at spending money from a business point of view: return value. Gone is the era where I would get nice overpriced camera gear I didn't really need just for the hell of it


OK, I understand that. I thought that photography was strictly a hobby or a passion of yours. Sure, then it is not more than a tool . Good luck!



Sep 05, 2012 at 03:18 AM
Kmccarthy
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p.1 #13 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


Maybe the "bad" 50L copy just needs to be calibrated for your body. Unfortunately I don't think the 5Dc has microfocus (the 5d II does), so you would have to send it to Canon.


Sep 05, 2012 at 03:46 AM
rabbitmountain
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p.1 #14 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


Kmccarthy wrote:
Maybe the "bad" 50L copy just needs to be calibrated for your body. Unfortunately I don't think the 5Dc has microfocus (the 5d II does), so you would have to send it to Canon.


Well that is a possibility. But I always thought that calibration is about correcting an AF deviation. Based on that assumption, either all images are in focus or all images are OOF. So if the latter would have been the case, yes, it would have been worth trying.

But figure this: before doing the 5Dc / 50L (copy one) combo, I tested it with a Lens Align target and guess what? The combo was dead on accurate, image after image. It was only when I went on shooting real targets that the AF proved to be inconsistent. I hit 20% in focus shots and those were lovely. So based on the Lens Align test, I figured this combo would not benefit from calibration by Canon. But maybe I got that all wrong...




Sep 05, 2012 at 04:11 AM
rabbitmountain
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p.1 #15 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


AgeOfEmpires wrote:
With a 5Dc on the way, looks like I won't be getting a 50 L any time soon...

I'm not so sure. There have been reports of photographers saying they never experienced problems with their 5Dc + 50L. There just seem to be many more that do. But then isn't it always that one mostly hears about problems and not about successes in these matters?

Congrats on your purchase by the way. It's an absolute stunning camera. In my experience just as good or better IQ than a 1DsII.



Sep 05, 2012 at 04:14 AM
Scottgoh
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p.1 #16 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


tried out 5D3 paired with the 70-200II last weekend

side focusing nail it sharp!

http://www.facebook.com/Scottgohphotography#!/photo.php?fbid=10152088811345179&set=a.10152088808940179.908547.607370178&type=1&theater

Edit: looks like the link above does not work. its a photo of a dog running towards me.

Scott



Sep 05, 2012 at 04:34 AM
EB-1
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p.1 #17 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


Apparently super is a relative term.

EBH



Sep 05, 2012 at 04:41 AM
rabbitmountain
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p.1 #18 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


EB-1 wrote:
Apparently super is a relative term.
EBH

Let's just split "super" in two: half is my excitement, or rather astonishment over discovering what I did, the other half is a real good AF system that will most likely satisfy my needs.

I'm sure 5D3 / 1Dx but also 1D4 AF is better than 5D2, but this test made me realise the 5D2 is really closer to the 5D3 than it is to the 5Dclassic.

When the 5D2 came out in 2009 I had been shooting a couple of years with my 5Dclassic. Upon reading DPR's review High ISO comparison and summary, I didn't see any feature in which it bests the 5Dclassic, at least none that was essential to my needs:

- I don't use video or LiveView
- 12.8mp is enough for what I was shooting back then
- I shoot RAW only
- I heard more than one 5Dclassic owner report they preferred the 5Dclassic colours
- No improvement in AF

So I never bothered to go and even hold the camera back then. Now that I have, I must say it is a substantial upgrade, and this camera could be great value at today's price.

BUT before I rush to the store I'm curious as to what Canon will release this fall. According to the rumours the 6D would boast a 22 mp sensor, a 7D-ish 19pt AF system and metering, 3.9 fps. There is no doubt at all that the sensor is much better than the 5D2's, AF is much better well basically everything is much better and the price should be well below 2500. So there's probably no point to bother with a 5D2 at this point.

We'll see.



Sep 05, 2012 at 11:17 AM
mttran
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p.1 #19 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


Ralph, get 5Dc Ec-s focusing screen to work with 50L while waitting for better & cheaper cam later. Don't rush into anything now...5d2 is a good cam but not OOF bullet proof for sure and i have one. Like Joshua said, 5d3 is your best bet.


Sep 05, 2012 at 11:26 AM
jopeme
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p.1 #20 · 5DmkII has super AF!!!


The 5D2 is really a nice camera indeed selling at a bargain price now.

However, the sole reason for you to upgrade is to have a better AF so that you may use that lovely 50L.

A question for you...

Why not a 5DMKIII which has the best AF, 1DX allowing, up to date?



Sep 05, 2012 at 12:20 PM
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