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New Contributor
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎06-04-2016

60D focus issues

Greetings - first time poster here -

 

I've recently started experiencing odd focus issues with my 60D across all lenses.  The attached photo is a good example: focus point solidly on pitcther shot with back button focus at f8, 1/2000 ISO 800 shot with 70-200L  EF f4 USM non IS.  These are typtical settings for me in this environment. It's been a good setup so this is a sad development.

 

The chain link is in focus and the pitcher is uniformly soft.

 

My local camera shop told me that "action shots" can be blurry and said they would send it into Canon. 

 

Questions: is sending to Canon my best bet?  I'm open to user error but it feels hardware related.

 

Thanks in advance.

 

 

 

 

 

Screen Shot 2016-05-28 at 1.21.26 PM.png

Reputable Contributor
Posts: 748
Registered: ‎11-14-2012

Re: 60D focus issues

It would be nice with a free af calibration.

About the picture above it is hard to tell if it is the camera or you. The af point in center is much bigger than you think it is and it will lock on high contrast thingys, for example the background. Mount your camera on a tripod, put a barcode 3-4 meters away and take 10 pictures through the viewfinder. Unfocus between every picture. After that take a picture with live view. If the live view is better, send the camera and lens for calibration.
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Reputable Contributor
Posts: 748
Registered: ‎11-14-2012

Re: 60D focus issues

Take a look at this picture http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/T2I/ZAFPOINTPOSITION-LG.JPG
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My Swedish blog

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VIP
Posts: 8,186
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: 60D focus issues

[ Edited ]

"I've recently started experiencing odd focus issues with my 60D across all lenses.  The attached photo is a good example: focus point solidly on pitcther shot with back button focus at f8, 1/2000 ISO 800 shot with 70-200L  EF f4 USM non IS.  These are typtical settings for me in this environment. It's been a good setup so this is a sad development."  

 

That looks like some shots that I have captured when I use BBF and One Shot focusing.  I suspect that your focus was not locked onto to the pitcher, but rather the background.  This is sort of the opposite of using AI Servo, and something passes between you and your subject, and changing the camera's AF target.

 

If you are using One Shot mode, then focus will lock focus onto wherever the CP, center point, is aimed.  Just because the kid stepped forward, and apparently into the focus area of the CP does not mean that the camera focused on him.  I suspect that focus locked onto the background when you used BBF, because the CP was not quite fully on the pitcher.  Once focus is locked using One Shot mode, it will not change until you re-acquire it by releasing BBF, and starting over.. 

 

Instead, I try to pre-focus on the pitcher before he winds up, and then release my BBF button.  I am typically 20-30 feet outside of first base, so the DoF around the pitcher is deep enough that he can go through all of his windup gyrations and pretty much stay in focus.  I try to use a wider aperture, so that I can better see what is in focus, and what is not using DoF preview.

 

Also, I can get better results if I allow for at least a 1/2 second delay for AF to acquire a target, and then another 1/2 second for it to lock on.

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Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,967
Registered: ‎02-26-2015

Re: 60D focus issues

[ Edited ]

rpmteacher wrote:

Greetings - first time poster here -

 

I've recently started experiencing odd focus issues with my 60D across all lenses.  The attached photo is a good example: focus point solidly on pitcther shot with back button focus at f8, 1/2000 ISO 800 shot with 70-200L  EF f4 USM non IS.  These are typtical settings for me in this environment. It's been a good setup so this is a sad development.

 

The chain link is in focus and the pitcher is uniformly soft.

 

My local camera shop told me that "action shots" can be blurry and said they would send it into Canon. 

 

Questions: is sending to Canon my best bet?  I'm open to user error but it feels hardware related.

 

Thanks in advance.


First, f/8 will give you a large depth of field where you can expect the pitcher and the fence to be in equal focus. Set your lens at f/4 if you want to try and separate the pitcher from the background.

 

Second, as for the equal softness. If you have your camera set to either the Neutral picture style or the Faithful picture style those picture styles are designed to be post processed. That includes adding sharpening.  If you are not adding sharpening in post processing set your camera to the 'Standard' picture style.

 

So, set your aperture to f/4, and your picture style to Standard, go take some pictures and see if that helps.

 

edit: I agree with the above poster, make sure you are in AIServo focus mode, but, as a rule if nothing is sharp in a photo like that it is not a focus issue. 

 

 

New Contributor
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎06-04-2016

Re: 60D focus issues

Thanks to all for the replies.  I'm going to apply some of your ideas to this issue.  

 

I should have added that I do shoot in AI Servo in standard mode.

 

 

 

 

VIP
Posts: 8,186
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: 60D focus issues

[ Edited ]

@rpmteacher wrote:

Thanks to all for the replies.  I'm going to apply some of your ideas to this issue.  

 

I should have added that I do shoot in AI Servo in standard mode.

 


Okay, good luck.  I should have mentioned that I have settled into One Shot mode.  Maybe I need more practice with AI Servo, but keeping the CP, center point, on the subject can be tough.  Although, a basball pitcher's movements are pretty predictable, but keeping that dot on the pitcher is still tough, especially with long zoom....at least for me.  The more advanced cameras incorporate AF Assist points in AI Servo, which surround your manually selected AF point.  Those cameras have 45, and more, AF points.

 

So, I use One Shot mode most of the time, and dabble with AI Servo every so often.  When I pre-focus in One Shot mode, one trick I have learned is to focus at the kid's feet, or the base.  By focusing on something "low down", I reduce the possibility of focusing on something undesireable lurking in the backgroiund. Once I'm pre-focused, all I need to do is press the shutter at the right moment.

 

As has been pointed out with the linked image, the AF area is bit bigger than the AF highlighted square, and the camera looks for something high contrast to focus on.  Finally, don't forget that the camera may lag behind your aim by half a second, as it acquires and focuses on a subject.

 

Do you ever take a series of continuous shots?  Is the focus in a continuous [at least a second] sequence consistent?

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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,111
Registered: ‎02-06-2013

Re: 60D focus issues


@rpmteacher wrote:

 

My local camera shop told me that "action shots" can be blurry and said they would send it into Canon. 

 

Questions: is sending to Canon my best bet?  I'm open to user error but it feels hardware related.

 

 

 


Unless all of your shots have this problem, I wouldn't worry about it.  I shoot a lot of Birds In Flight (BIF) type of shots and about 10% of my shots fall into this exact category where the camera should have nailed the focus (it even shows the correct focus points) but the pictures are not in focus.  The other 40% are just plain blurry...as long as my other 50% are in sharp focus, I'm happy.  I'd worry if my camera behaves this way using one shot focus but in AI Servo...it's not quite an exact science...that I'm quite convinced of.  Personally I never thought there's anything wrong with the camera.  Most of the people I shoot BIF with using AI Servo experience basically the same thing...for all I know it's user error but maybe not...Bottom line is since I only keep 1 out of 100, 50 blurred pictures are no big deal.

 

The ratio I quoted is based on my 7D Mark II...the ratios are worse with my 5D mark III and even worse with my 50D so this is not unique to 60D.

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