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New Contributor
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎09-25-2020

T7i spot focus

I'm new to DSLRs, so I'll ask stupid questions.  Here's my first one.  

 

I want to have my camera start up in spot focus mode.  Can I set it as default?  Our backyard bears are so black that the default focus has trouble settling on the bear and not the foliage.

 

Thanks.

VIP
Posts: 11,788
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: T7i spot focus

Do you know how to set Spot Focus in the T7i?  You need to be in one of the "Creative Zone" shooting modes.  These are P, Tv, Av, and M settings on the top dial.  

 

Setting up and using Spot Focus effectively is not exactly straightforward.  If you do not have a copy of the full User Guide for the camera, then I suggest that you revisit the Canon Support page for your camera, which is where you downloaded any software for the camera.

 

People who set up Spot AF will usually set up Spot Metering, too.  Also, many users do not realize that Spot AF only works with the Center AF port, and ditto for Spot Metering.  Spot Metering only works at the Center AF point.  Many users do not consider the fact that the actual size and location of the AF point may not be exactly the same size and location as the AF square that they see in the viewfinder.

 

Finally, if the bears are so distant that appear so small in the viewfinder that only one AF point can cover them, then they are probably too far away to captrure a sharp image, and Spot AF mode may only make matters worse.

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"Doctor told me to get out and walk, so I bought a Canon."
New Contributor
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎09-25-2020

Re: T7i spot focus

Thanks for the reply.  I didn't have time to make changes in auto focus, and you'll notice that the nose is out a little. If I could have turned the camera on in spot focus, I think it would have been better  About 20 ft with kit 18-55Bears15.JPG

Forum Elite
Posts: 14,116
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: T7i spot focus

Looking at your sample, too close BTW Smiley Surprised, 20 feet (?), you might be at the limit of your lens.  I applied some unsharp mask, actually quite a lot and this is what I got.

Bears15.JPG

 

I did WB in PS also. It looks like you might have missed true focus just a bit.  If you look at the leaves right to the left of Blackie, they seem pretty darn sharp. I brought up the shadows in PS with a level adjustment. It is a pretty nice shot.

 

Here is what I would do, use Av mode. Set it to f8. Use ISO at 1600 and a daylight WB.  Select just the center focus point, turn all the others off. This will give you as fast of SS as possible for proper exposure.  Always use Raw file format, never jpg. And, lastly get a good post editor.  You can d/l the free from Canon DPP4 or subscribe to the industry leading Photoshop.

 

And very lastly, you might want to consider upgrading your kit lens. I do think you are at its limit.

 

 

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
New Contributor
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎09-25-2020

Re: T7i spot focus

Thanks!  The photo is much better with your adjustments  It sharpened up considerably.  My picture was out of the camera with no post production.  

 

By the way, that's the Brothers Bearamozov, with Dmitri in the foreground and Alexei in back. They usually den up about 150 feet from my back door.  They don't call Asheville "Bear City" for no reason.

VIP
Posts: 8,126
Registered: ‎11-13-2012

Re: T7i spot focus

[ Edited ]

It looks liike you have your camera set to AI Focus. That is really a setting you should never use.

 

Screenshot 2020-09-25 122151.jpg

 

AI Focus tries to determine if a subject is static or moving and then shifts to Single Shot or AI Servo. The problem is (or at least I have found years ago when the option first came out and I was experimenting with it) it can't differentiate between subject movement and inadvertent camera movement by tghe photographer. In AI Servo the camera is trying to predict where a moving subject will be when the shutter actually fires. Once it shifts to AI Servo focus lock is less likely and the camera will generally favor capture over focus for the first shot..  For subjects that you know aren't moving yuo want Single Shot.

 

Screenshot 2020-09-25 125511.jpg

 

In your case the camera doesn't seem to have achieved focus at any of the focus points.

 

Screenshot 2020-09-25 122947.jpg

 

A locked focus point would have a black and red frame.

 

Screenshot 2020-09-25 124732.jpg

John Hoffman
Conway, NH

1D X Mark III, Many lenses, Pixma PRO-100, MX472, LR Classic
New Contributor
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎09-25-2020

Re: T7i spot focus

Thanks, John.  This was a grab and shoot (I had to grab my dog) and I don't have enough experience to make those adjustments without stopping to think about it.

VIP
Posts: 11,788
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: T7i spot focus

[ Edited ]

@jrhoffman75 wrote:

It looks liike you have your camera set to AI Focus. That is really a setting you should never use.

 

Screenshot 2020-09-25 122151.jpg

 

AI Focus tries to determine if a subject is static or moving and then shifts to Single Shot or AI Servo. The problem is (or at least I have found years ago when the option first came out and I was experimenting with it) it can't differentiate between subject movement and inadvertent camera movement by tghe photographer. In AI Servo the camera is trying to predict where a moving subject will be when the shutter actually fires. Once it shifts to AI Servo focus lock is less likely and the camera will generally favor capture over focus for the first shot..  For subjects that you know aren't moving yuo want Single Shot.

 

 

 

In your case the camera doesn't seem to have achieved focus at any of the focus points.

 

 

 

A locked focus point would have a black and red frame.

 

 


The AI Focus mode is a result of shooting in Green A, Automatic mode.  

 

I notice that flash was also used, and the shutter speed is fairly slow.  It shows ony 1/160 as a shutter speed, but that may be a result of the camera using the flash.  It would appear that this was not shot at high noon on a bright sunny day.

 

Use the Center AF point and Av mode, as suggested.  In Automatic mode, any ONE, and only one, of the red squares would be used to lock the focus.  If the bears are moving, use the [Q] menu to change focus mode from ONE SHOT to AI SERVO. 

 

Screen Shot 2020-09-25 at 1.10.39 PM.png

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"Doctor told me to get out and walk, so I bought a Canon."
Forum Elite
Posts: 14,116
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: T7i spot focus

"It looks like you might have missed true focus just a bit.  If you look at the leaves right to the left of Blackie Dmitri, they seem pretty darn sharp."

 

I am going to repeat this as I first stated. This is a simple shot (sorry, but it is) so you don't need any, and it will most likely cause you to miss shots, of the more advanced features. I still would like to se you set and use Av mode. Set it to f8. Use ISO at 1600 and a daylight WB.  Select just the center focus point, turn all the others off. One shot mode. Always use Raw file format. These settings will remain active even when you switch the camera off so they will be instantly ready next time.

 

 Do consider getting a good post editor.  You can d/l the free from Canon DPP4 or subscribe to the industry leading Photoshop. Post editing is the single reason for choosing Raw format.  You have a much larger latitude of adjustment in your post edits. Nothing is set in stone with Raw and most everything can be fixed except mis-focus.

 

And very lastly, you might want to consider upgrading your kit lens. I do think you are at its limit. Besides what I have advised  nothing more can help or make better photos for you with the exception of a better lens.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Forum Elite
Posts: 14,116
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: T7i spot focus

There used to be an old say'in by old photographers that I have modified a bit.  It says great photos are 1/3 camera/lens, 1/3 you and 1/2 post editing. Yeah, I know, but it demonstrates the importance of post editing. It is most of the time more important than the first two!

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
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