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Honored Contributor
Posts: 5,436
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Canon 100-400 vii lens - Pictures could be sharper Need help!

[ Edited ]

Okay

 

1.  According to the EXIF data for this shot, as well as the other two you posted, the AF point had been manually selected.  In other words, that point seems to have been the default AF point when those shots were captured.

2.  Under most circumstances, there is nothing wrong with recomposing shots.  It's when you start working with narrow DOF, depth-of-field, that recomposing can become a focusing issue.

 

3a.  The following link explains it fairly well, and includes a DOF calculator.

 

http://www.dofmaster.com/doftable.html

 

3b.  Basically, a lens has a range of distances over which it can focus.  When you focus on something, the further you move behind the subject, the more OOF, out of focus, the image becomes.  Likewise, when you move closer to the camera, the image becomes more OOF. 

Try laying a ruler on a table, and taking a picture of [it] at a 45 degree angle.  Get as close as your lens allows, and use a tripod.  You could also use a yardstick or a tape measure on the floor, too.   I have used an empty parking lot and a tape measure to test my super telephoto lenses.  The evenly spaced white lines that mark the parking spaces are perfect for measuring distances.  I take shots of the tape measure at various distances and focal lengths.

 

4.  I don't think your lens back focuses.  I don't really see any obvious signs of back focusing in the shots that you posted.  Seeing how it is possible that you may have recomposed the shots, one cannot draw any conclusions, anyway.  

 

5.  You can purchase [a stand alone license [for] LR6 for a little more than the cost of a year of renting LR and PS together.  You must rent the pair, because they are not offered individually.  My installation of LR6 updated itself the other night.  As far as becoming outdated goes, at some point in time the [LR6] package will no longer be supported.  Seeing how it currently supports all of [my] lenses and camera bodies [that I own], cutting off support for LR6 would not impact me.  Updates [usually] are for support for the newest gear.

 

6.  If I said the camera focuses accurately, then that could be interpreted as [a] mistake.  Yes, the lens is what actually focuses, but it is the camera body that controls the focusing behavior.  Accurate focusing is a combination of both body and lens, especially when you try to use AI Servo tracking modes.

 

7.  If you use a tripod, be sure to turn off the IS on the lens.

 

Hope this helps.  Have some fun.

 

[EDITS]

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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
VIP
Posts: 8,117
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Canon 100-400 vii lens - Pictures could be sharper Need help!

I am going to add a few comments, too.  Mostly what you have received so far is pretty good.  Spot on, some could be a little clearer.

You can buy Lightroom (about $150).  You can NOT buy Photoshop.  You must rent it.  Adobe does not make it easy to purchase LR but if you give it a good go you can do it.  So far Adobe is updating LR but who knows what will happen.  Adobe has lost its mind!

 

It is the lens that does the focusing but the camera can impact that so it is not exclusively the lens.

 

You need to select just the center focus point and you must turn the others off.  They won't even so up.  I don't remember what camera you have so I don't know how you go about turning them off.  Check your manual.

 

"You mention that my DOF and focal length is less than an inch - what does this mean?"

 

DOF is a misleading term.  There is only one spot that any lens has critical focus.  It's not a foot, it's not an inch. The DOF is calculated by what most people think is OK or acceptable focus when viewed at certain distances.  That is why we all say focus on the eye.  Critical focus, one spot.

 

"I'm going to order a Canon remote"

 

I wouldn't.  Why?

A lot of Canon stuff. Along with, a lot of other stuff.
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎09-17-2016

Re: Canon 100-400 vii lens - Pictures could be sharper Need help!

ebiggs, thanks for the info.

 

Re: the Canon remote comment that I made, my reason is I figured once I get to setting my lens up on a tripod and checking out my photos on the tripod v. handheld (it IS a heavy lens after all)  I figured if I use a remote, there won't be any movement by my manually taking a photo. What's your take on remotes?

 

 

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎09-17-2016

Re: Canon 100-400 vii lens - Pictures could be sharper Need help!

Thanks, Waddizzle,

 

I appreciate it. I will be looking at the link you put in your last comment shortly. I could spend hours on this stuff, but chores await!

Honored Contributor
Posts: 5,436
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Canon 100-400 vii lens - Pictures could be sharper Need help!


Summerlee340 wrote:

ebiggs, thanks for the info.

 

Re: the Canon remote comment that I made, my reason is I figured once I get to setting my lens up on a tripod and checking out my photos on the tripod v. handheld (it IS a heavy lens after all)  I figured if I use a remote, there won't be any movement by my manually taking a photo. What's your take on remotes?

 

 


In most cases, and unless you must take the shot at a certain moment [like photographing a drop of water splashing], then the internal shutter delay timer should be sufficient.  I bought a third party remote, only because it has an intervalometer, which my  favorite camera bodies lack.  

 

I have had it for over 2 years, and have yet to use it.  Using the shutter delay timer has been sufficient, because I am mostly photographing static subjects, not dynamic subjects, whose motion I am trying to capture.

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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
VIP
Posts: 8,117
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Canon 100-400 vii lens - Pictures could be sharper Need help!

"... if I use a remote, there won't be any movement by my manually taking a photo."

 

Use the time delay shutter.

 

Another point about IS.  I have done several curiosity testing with IS and a tripod.  I actually can't tell a difference whether it is on or off. So I have concluded it doesn't make any difference if you switch it off on a tripod or not.  I don't.  Keep in mind the farther away from perfect conditions for the IS to correct and help you, the less effective it is.  In other words it is a diminishing variable and it diminishes as stops increase.

 

 

IMHO, most if not all you issues are mis-focusing and your technique.  I believe your gear to be fine.  Again, IMHO, this is where you need to spend your time improving.  Have you ever seen target marksmen at a shooting range?  Notice how they concentrate on how they stand and hold their firearms.  The same approach should be applied to photography.  How you hold the gear is extremely important.  Keep your arms close to your body for instance for stability.  Not outward like a flying bird.  

Tips;

Keep your elbows together and against your chest.

Keep your left hand under the lens, not sticking out to the side.

Lean slightly into camera and grip it tightly.

Keep your legs in an open stance.

Most of all, shoot often and shoot a lot.

A lot of Canon stuff. Along with, a lot of other stuff.
Honored Contributor
Posts: 5,436
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Canon 100-400 vii lens - Pictures could be sharper Need help!


ebiggs1 wrote:

"... if I use a remote, there won't be any movement by my manually taking a photo."

 

Use the time delay shutter.

 

Another point about IS.  I have done several curiosity testing with IS and a tripod.  I actually can't tell a difference whether it is on or off. So I have concluded it doesn't make any difference if you switch it off on a tripod or not.  I don't.  Keep in mind the farther away from perfect conditions for the IS to correct and help you, the less effective it is.  In other words it is a diminishing variable and it diminishes as stops increase.

.


I believe the OP has a T3i.  Turning off the IS will make a difference.  I have posted the link a couple of times, but the moderators take it down.  There is an article on Canon's Europe sight about IS behavior in Canon lenses.

In chapter of the article, they discuss IS and a tripod.  As it turns out, certain lenses and camera bodies have the smarts to recognize when the combination is on a tripod, and will automatically disable the IS.  They do not describe how this feat of black magic is achieved.  They just state it as fact, and posted a chart of compatible lenses and bodies.

 

Needless to say, the compatible lenses were certain "L" lenses,   Basically, if the lens had a tripod foot, then the most recent releases had the smarts.  This would include the "L" macro lenses.  They also included a few others, like the f/1.2 primes, for certain.

The compatible camera bodies were all of the 1D series bodies, and the #D series of camera bodies.  No Rebels, nor ##D, ###D, or ####D camera bodies.

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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
VIP
Posts: 8,117
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Canon 100-400 vii lens - Pictures could be sharper Need help!

[ Edited ]

"I believe the OP has a T3i."

 

All I can say is test it for yourself.

 

The IS group of lenses is normally locked into place. They don't move.  When the IS function is switched on, the IS lens group is unlocked.  It is controlled by an electromagnetic coil surrounding the IS lens elements.  My findings suggest that a slow enough SS could cause the IS to sense some movement (but what's the point of the tripod?) and unlock the IS group. This could cause blur, I suppose.  If it does I don't see it but I admit I wasn't using very slow SS.  Slow SS and a tele are not usually combined. 

All image stabilization I know of has a threshold.  Just as I explained to the OP, IS is variable.  If the vibration is below that threshold the IS will remain locked.  Maybe people that see a problem with IS on a tripod should invest in a better tripod !

 

I know of no lens that automatically shuts off IS when mounted on a tripod.  Not that there isn't one out there but I don't ever remember using one. Can you refresh my memory?

 

 

A lot of Canon stuff. Along with, a lot of other stuff.
Honored Contributor
Posts: 5,436
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Canon 100-400 vii lens - Pictures could be sharper Need help!


ebiggs1 wrote:

"I believe the OP has a T3i."

 

All I can say is test it for yourself.

 

 

 

I know of no lens that automatically shuts off IS when mounted on a tripod.  Not that there isn't one out there but I don't ever remember using one. Can you refresh my memory?

 

 


http://cpn.canon-europe.com/content/education/infobank/lenses/image_stabilisation.do?page=4    

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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 25
Registered: ‎09-17-2016

Re: Canon 100-400 vii lens - Pictures could be sharper Need help!

Thank you ebiggs . Those tips are very good advice. I do keep my elbows close together but I don't think I hold the camera all that tightly etc. I need to shoot more....thanks again!
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