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Posts: 1
Registered: ‎04-24-2021

RF 600mm Needs some trouble shooting help

I have had the eos r body for a year now and just picked up the new RF 600mm lens about a month ago.  This lens is pretty light and has amazing image stablization.  When ducks and birds are close and still you can get some amaizing shots.  I have been visting a local wildlife refuge with lots of birds to choose from.  I am starting notice that I am missing more and more opportunities due to focusing issues and possible lens limitations.  Mostly with large birds of prey, boy is this frustrating. 

1.

1.jpg

Here is the first one above.  It seems like I shoud be able to crop this photo and get a clear eagle.  But no, why?  The bottom of the tree is in focus why isnt the bird, when the focus was applied to the bird. This was a warm day and the water was gone.  

2.

2.jpg

Later in the same afternoon I am sitting by the river and noticed this awesome eagle sitting in the tree.  Its amazing to see a youth eagle about to transition to the full white head adult. But none of my pictures are coming out!!  The bird sat for a good three minutes, while I do notice at the time that focus is not working and try different options. .  I Try manual focus and nope, I get up and move around a lot. 50 shots and not one come out.  Basically even with the smallest focus dot available right on the eagle, the lens or camera can't distinguish eagle apart from the tree.  This seems to be a consistant issue for me. Unless the Eagle is sitting on a bare branch with nothing behind it you wont be able to focus on it.  My question is this a limitation of this particular lens (especially sense it is essentially a budget lens) ?  Feel like this has more to do with the giant square in the lens and its limitations.  Limitation of the body and processor?  What could I be doing different?

 

Thoughts would be appreciated. 

VIP
Posts: 11,516
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: RF 600mm Needs some trouble shooting help


@Robodude wrote:

I have had the eos r body for a year now and just picked up the new RF 600mm lens about a month ago.  This lens is pretty light and has amazing image stablization.  When ducks and birds are close and still you can get some amaizing shots.  I have been visting a local wildlife refuge with lots of birds to choose from.  I am starting notice that I am missing more and more opportunities due to focusing issues and possible lens limitations.  Mostly with large birds of prey, boy is this frustrating. 

1.

1.jpg

Here is the first one above.  It seems like I shoud be able to crop this photo and get a clear eagle.  But no, why?  The bottom of the tree is in focus why isnt the bird, when the focus was applied to the bird. This was a warm day and the water was gone.  

 

 

2.

2.jpg

Later in the same afternoon I am sitting by the river and noticed this awesome eagle sitting in the tree.  Its amazing to see a youth eagle about to transition to the full white head adult. But none of my pictures are coming out!!  The bird sat for a good three minutes, while I do notice at the time that focus is not working and try different options. .  I Try manual focus and nope, I get up and move around a lot. 50 shots and not one come out.  Basically even with the smallest focus dot available right on the eagle, the lens or camera can't distinguish eagle apart from the tree.  This seems to be a consistant issue for me. Unless the Eagle is sitting on a bare branch with nothing behind it you wont be able to focus on it.  My question is this a limitation of this particular lens (especially sense it is essentially a budget lens) ?  Feel like this has more to do with the giant square in the lens and its limitations.  Limitation of the body and processor?  What could I be doing different?

 

Thoughts would be appreciated. 


1.  You cannot crop an image and then expect for resolution to remain the same.  It doesn't,  You can test this yourself.  What is the resolution of the image that you posted?  What is the resolution of the cropped image?  When you multiple the X and Y dimensions together, that should give you a rough idea of how many MP the final image contains.  Full HD is 2 MP.

 

2.  Same issue as above, and then some.  Repeat the same test here.  Photographing a bird sitting on a tree branch while being surrounded by many other branches can be a really tough shot to get right, even for a pro.  It is a challenging shot that will test both photographer and gear alike.

 

"When ducks and birds are close, you can get some amazing shots."

 

I suggest that you follow your own advice.  Get closer.  Keep shooting.  Make lots of mistakes and learn from them.

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"Doctor told me to get out and walk, so I bought a Canon."
VIP
Posts: 11,516
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: RF 600mm Needs some trouble shooting help

Both of the images have resolutions of 1620 x 1080, which is 2 MP.  That is not high resolution imagery. 

 

There is no EXIF information associated with the photos, and you did not describe any exposure or shooting settings.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Doctor told me to get out and walk, so I bought a Canon."
VIP
Posts: 13,856
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: RF 600mm Needs some trouble shooting help

"It seems like I shoud be able to crop this photo and get a clear eagle.  But no, why? "

 

To answer this question is simple.  As distance increases your lens resolving power goes down. When you crop and image your resolution also goes down.

 

Most new people have the wrong impression of a camera telephoto lens.  They tend to think and see it as a telephoto they use to view far off subjects like stars, the Moon or animals and birds.  And, you can use a camera tele for that too. However, the photographic telephoto lens is really designed to fill the camera frame with the subject.  Like a football player, a dangerous animal, your kids, or even your eagle. You need to close the gap and fill the frame.

 

If you take a shot of a small bird with a telephoto lens and are a long distance away the bird will remain small. You need to close that gap, yourself, so you can fil the frame or frame as you like. Tha's why the close up ducks are very good. Closer is always better than better tele lenses.

 

This shot was about 35 feet and I used my 600mm Siggy lens.

_52D1516.jpg

 

Far away shots can be dramitic for effect. Same 600mm Sigma lens.

_52D1493.jpg

 

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
VIP
Posts: 13,856
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: RF 600mm Needs some trouble shooting help

"Basically even with the smallest focus dot available right on the eagle, the lens or camera can't distinguish eagle apart from the tree."

 

First a bird in a tree with branches all around is not just difficult for anybody or camera it can be impossible to to. So don't use that as a standard for judgement of your gear.

 

"Unless the Eagle is sitting on a bare branch with nothing behind it you wont be able to focus on it." 

 

And, is the case for most if not all cameras.

 

"This seems to be a consistant issue for me."

 

Yes and two things come to mind.  Over confidence because you got some great shoots, you expect all shots to be great. They won't believe me. Nobody gets all their shots. Nobody!  And two, your gear and how you set it up. My choice beginning settings are Av mode and I typically set the widest aperture of f5 in my case. ISO is fixed at 800. One shot, not, almost never, use Ai-servo or other AF mode. Daylight WB and always, always Raw format. Use just the center focus point and turn all the others off. If possible focus on the eye (so you see how important getting closer is so very important).

 

Remember these are "beginning" settings so change as necessary. But they work well in good daylight which is what it looks like you had. Lastly you must post edit with a good editing program like Lightroom or Photoshop.  Not owning one of these, you can d/l the free from Canon DPP4. 

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