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Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results
  
 
JFox
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


Had my 7D (new to me) for several months now. I primarily do sports and landscapes with the occasional portrait/senior type stuff. I only have a Canon 70-200/2.8 Original Version and a Tamron 17-50. After taking pictures with this new camera (new to me) I was surprised how much seemed out of focus. So I started doing some reading on the Tuning feature inside the camera and found the Dot-Tune. So I tried it for both the 70-200 and 17-50. Until this weekend I really hadn't had the chance to the try the 17-50, but had plenty of opportunity to try the 70-200. Shot some football and cross country with the 70-200 and saw a definite improvement in sharp photos. Thought all was great until I tried some senior portraits and am now dumbfounded why so many are out of focus. I used the 70-200 more than I did the 17-50. What I did take with the 17-50 seems fine. Not so much on the 70-200. Since it was probably a month ago I know I did the dot tune at 200mm and I believe at 70mm and they didn't seem that far off comparatively.

So is that messing me up? The lenses were on a Canon 40D originally and the 70-200 and body were sent into CPS for calibration. Should I not mess with the Dot Tune and send the 70D and 70-200 into CPS? Really I was just trying to avoid the cost of sending it in since I don't have enough for CPS membership anymore and would pay regular cost.

If I have to bite the bullet and send it in, so be it.

Sports was all shot at either Av or Manual (darker conditions), AI Servo, Clustered Focus Points and Fast Tracking on Servo.

Portrait stuff was done on Av, Single Shot, Center Point only usually focusing on an eye.

I don't have any comparison shooting portraits before the Tuning.

Any suggestions?



Oct 15, 2013 at 12:01 AM
Ian.Dobinson
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


Ok a few quick questions first:

Did you tune for each lens or use the mode that keeps the same MA value for all lenses?

Did you tune in good light ?

Are the problem shots at the same focal length as the good shots ?

Are the problem shots at a different distance to the Tuning distance?

Ok those questions asked here a few points .

Dot tune is not the only method . Its pretty good but its worth trying a more 'normal' MA method also . You may find that some lenses have different MA results at differnt distances/focal lengths . The 5D3 I have just got goes someway to helping with this as it allows for T & W ends for zoom lenses .
But I had one lens a while back on my 7D that needed a few differnt settings . I would have a default setting for alround use but had a few other settings noted down that I could quickly load .
I'd have them listed as a note on my phone .



Oct 15, 2013 at 11:39 AM
schlotz
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


Why not keep it simple for just a few minutes and re-Dot-Tune the 70-200 at 70mm. Then take a series of portraits and see if the sharpness improves. If it does then you know the body-lens combo requires different MA settings depending on the mm used. BTW: did you use the Canon recommended 50x mm distance when using Dot-Tune?

Matt



Oct 15, 2013 at 12:48 PM
JFox
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


Ian.Dobinson wrote:
Did you tune for each lens or use the mode that keeps the same MA value for all lenses?


I did for individual lenses

Did you tune in good light ?

I believe I did. It was not out doors, it was in my workshop which to me is lit well with many many 4' florescent fixtures. Is that the issue? The Florescents

Are the problem shots at the same focal length as the good shots ?

In football, since it's only the 70-200 is mostly always at the higher end, 175-200 and I know there were several pictures shot at 200. Granted I did get some motion blur shots and caught those during the shoot. Some of the pictures just look out of focus. Maybe I should stick to lower focal lengths when using that lens?

Are the problem shots at a different distance to the Tuning distance?

Like above, I know there were several shots at 200, which is where I tuned at. I did use the 50x focal length to tune.

Maybe this weekend I will go outside (if it's calm) and test again.



Oct 15, 2013 at 03:06 PM
JFox
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


schlotz wrote:
Why not keep it simple for just a few minutes and re-Dot-Tune the 70-200 at 70mm. Then take a series of portraits and see if the sharpness improves. If it does then you know the body-lens combo requires different MA settings depending on the mm used. BTW: did you use the Canon recommended 50x mm distance when using Dot-Tune?

Matt


Yes, I will try that. I did use the 50x mm distance.



Oct 15, 2013 at 03:07 PM
Shutterbug2006
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


I don't micro adjust any of my lenses.

You mentioned you use the center AF point and focus on an eye, so the question I have is, are you re-composing the shot after focusing on the eye? If so then that is your problem, the focal plane is off.






Oct 15, 2013 at 06:07 PM
Michael White
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


Iirc fluorescence lights might effect the ma. I believe with the process that uses the computer(forgot the name right now, but I'm planing on buying it soon) states that the flickering of the fluorescence lights will effect the ma process.


Oct 15, 2013 at 06:22 PM
JFox
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


Shutterbug2006 wrote:
I don't micro adjust any of my lenses.

You mentioned you use the center AF point and focus on an eye, so the question I have is, are you re-composing the shot after focusing on the eye? If so then that is your problem, the focal plane is off.


I am not recomposing my shot because I had it setup for the back * button to focus.



Oct 15, 2013 at 06:54 PM
mitesh
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


I think you might have misunderstood what Shutterbug meant by "focus and recompose." It doesn't have to do with which button focus is assigned to. After locking focus on the eye, did you then shift the camera in an attempt to change the framing? Did you zoom in or out after the focus lock? Also, is your lens the IS model or non-IS? Can you upload a few samples (good and bad focus) with EXIF intact?


Oct 15, 2013 at 07:09 PM
JFox
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


No I do not recompose. I'm basically just pivoting my head up and down to get the eye in focus. When I get home I'll track down some images


Oct 15, 2013 at 07:13 PM
 

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super35
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


There is a VERY simple fix for this problem. DO NOT I repeat DO NOT AF Micro Adjust in light that is completely different than you will be shooting. The color temperature of light changes focusing.

So, don't AF tune under tungsten studio lights, household lamps, or florescent fixtures and then go outside in Daylight and expect good results. If you can't tune the AF in reasonably similar light conditions to what you will be shooting, it's best to just leave it alone.



Oct 15, 2013 at 08:00 PM
Shutterbug2006
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


JFox wrote:
I am not recomposing my shot because I had it setup for the back * button to focus.



I'm not sure I understand what you are doing when you're making the shot. So let me ask which of these you do;

A) You point the camera at a subject, and get focus confirmation from one of your AF points on a particular eye, and you press the shutter right away. You do not move the camera at all between the time you lock an AF point on the eye and engage the shutter.

or

B) You point the camera at a subject, get focus confirmation from an AF point on an eye, and you move the camera angle left or right, or up or down to make the scene in the viewfinder appear to your liking, then you engage the shutter.




Oct 16, 2013 at 04:23 AM
Poff Photo
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


Just a few thoughts... Remember, the 7D only allows one AFMA setting per lens... If you get FoCal, run it at 70, 135, and 200... If you get three different AFMA's, you are either going to have to pick a happy medium that will be applied to all focal lengths or pick the AFMA at your most used focal length... Or you could jot down the values and change the AFMA to suit the use - 70mm AFMA for portraits or 200mm AFMA for sports... Oh, if you get FoCal, it needs a LOT of light! And it does not like fluorescent tubes (flickering)... Either post target outside in full sunlight or hit your target indoors with some serious halogen lamps... Hope this helps!


Oct 16, 2013 at 12:46 PM
Larate
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


My advice would be to stop right now and send for calibration your camera and lense (note the singular because I'm not sure your Canon center would calibrate a Tamron lens). Don't waste your time and money anymore.

I had a similar problem with f/1.4 or f/2 lenses and the same bodies (2 7D). I spent hours, bought many things that would solve the issue (and spending more hours to have them working properly - e.g Focal "PITA" software). I was confident of my "counter measures" until being in the fields with random results.
Finally, I stopped everything and for months, when I needed an accurate focus, I relied on CDAF and LiveView (and tripod, and so on). But that was ok (I do mostly landscape and still lifes) and results were excellents.
Now, I'm using a 1Dx and all my lenses are working fine with PDAF (some requiring a small MA).

To conclude, if a small adjustment (I would say between about -10 and +10) doesn't work for every focal and every distance, don't go further. Especially with not so luminous lens (you should not have such an issue with f/2.8 lenses).
If you could (and want), I would suggest to start with the calibration of your 7D alone, insisting that your Canon center checks the flange focal length and the flatness of the sensor (I hope my translation from French are right). Next, if required, ask for the calibration of your lenses (without the body).
The purpose of this two-step action is to not "bind" your lense to the camera. Thus, changing the camera would not affect your lens anymore (well, honestly it would reduce the risk with a new camera because it depends on how well this latter is calibrated !)

I hope it's clear, and sorry for my English (not my native language).

Edit: fix the biggest errors, well at least from my knowledge :')



Oct 17, 2013 at 01:52 PM
Shutterbug2006
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


I hate threads that die without a clear resolution to the problem, what he found could be useful in the future.


Feb 25, 2014 at 08:20 AM
Herb
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


Perhaps it is a later software update in my 7D, but for zoom lens I can set values for either end of the zoom range and the camera interpolates in between.....I was just doing my wife's this past weekend so the experience is fresh in my mind.


Feb 25, 2014 at 06:01 PM
Davis B.
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


^^^^^^^^ Really? Mine doesnt have that option. That would be 2 cool if it did.


Feb 25, 2014 at 06:54 PM
docsmiles17
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


Shutterbug2006 wrote:
I hate threads that die without a clear resolution to the problem, what he found could be useful in the future.


+100…which is the only reason I am reading this thread and waiting for resolution.



Feb 25, 2014 at 08:13 PM
Herb
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


Well, I think it did...lol. I was doing it and the 1Dx at the same time......let me check when I am back home this weekend......now I am second guessing myself......of course I am older and can't even remember what I had for lunch today!

Davis B. wrote:
^^^^^^^^ Really? Mine doesnt have that option. That would be 2 cool if it did.




Feb 27, 2014 at 11:38 PM
onesickpuppy
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Did Dot-Tune Technique - Mixed results


While I understand and don't doubt that MAYBE micro adjustments are needed...but I think all of us have missed a very important part in the first part of the problem......

He stated "Sports was all shot at either Av or Manual" and to ME...the first thing that my mind shows me is....if in AV....most likely he has TOO SLOW OF SHUTTER for the action. So without seeing the pics or even the SETTINGS he shot at...I would start at the basics....IF..his shutter speed was slightly slow for the setting of action...they could/would be soft.

ALSO....he stated that he is using "Fast Tracking on Servo".....tends to make think he is "interpreting " incorrectly. He's most likely thinking that means for moving action..he wants it to focus faster on the moving object...when in turn it means that if anything gets in between him and the subject...it will refocus quicker...so...if his technique is sloppy...it may pick up something in the background or such..and refocus creating a "soft" or out of focus shot...and not be a MFA issue.

To me...without seeing the results of what he is claiming to be at error with...and have the EXIF info to assist in making a better INFORMED decision....we're all off on WHAT the answer is!

On the portrait side.....he states......"just pivoting my head up and down to get the eye in focus"...if that isn't recomposing...someone please explain to me.....

Again....we the jury....need more info....on the settings...and sample shots to TRULY come to a correct conclusion.



Feb 28, 2014 at 05:57 AM
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