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Focusing tricks - got any?
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Oct 4, 2011 00:02:48   #
gessman
 
On this Canon 5D MkII I have that shoots 1080p video, it does so in what's called "Live Mode." It also has a setting on it that allows Live Mode when only shooting stills. To get real good clear focus, especially for such things as macro shots of stationary or slow moving objects, I put it in Live Mode for stills, take it off of auto focus, and that lets me use the lcd to see my prey, er, uh, subject. Once I'm there, I can use the magnify button and zoom in on my subject for closer and hopefully clearer focus. It lets me magnify a part of my subject by 10 times. If that's not enough, I have a 4x magnifying loupe I used in the past on my 4x5 cameras to bring my subject in even closer. Loupes can be bought at most any camera store and some other stores where cameras are sold. They're handy for looking at old slides and negatives too. Most folks may not need a loupe but if you have Live Mode on your camera, it might be worth trying it to focus with since it magnifies the subject.

Any other tricks or techniques people use for focus?

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Oct 4, 2011 00:32:01   #
Mary P
 
Wow. I'll have to read this over in the morning when I'm awake. I have the same camera and didn't know about that... Thanks!

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Oct 4, 2011 00:56:34   #
gessman
 
Mary P wrote:
Wow. I'll have to read this over in the morning when I'm awake. I have the same camera and didn't know about that... Thanks!


You're welcome. I think you'll like the results even if you don't use a loupe. If you bring up your subject to 10x you'll only be able to see just a little section of it so find a straight line or something else with a sharp edge on it to set your focus on. It works well.

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Oct 4, 2011 00:57:37   #
gessman
 
For any other cameras, if you can see where you're aiming the camera on the lcd you can probably do this with your camera also.

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Oct 4, 2011 01:54:09   #
PJT
 
USING LIVE MODE EXTENSIVELY CAN AND WILL DRAIN YOUR BATTERY. PICTURE IT LIKE LEAVING THE LIGHTS ON IN YOUR CAR OVERNIGHT IN WINTER.COME MORNING GUESS WHAT. I LOVE THE LIVE VIEW AND USE IT WITH THE GRID IN PLACE. IT IS WONDERFULL FOR CHECKING YOU D.O.F. AND FOCUS. BUT DO NOT I REPEAT DO NOT LEAVE IT ON FOR EXTENDED PERIODS OF TIME AS BATTERIES DEPLETE AND YOUR CAMRA SENSOR WILL HEAT UP.THIS MORE SO IN WARMER CLIMATES WHERE I RESIDE. CONSIDER BUYING ANOTHER BATTERY AS A SPARE BACKUP. HPE THIS HELPS :thumbup:

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Oct 4, 2011 03:24:48   #
gessman
 
PJT wrote:
USING LIVE MODE EXTENSIVELY CAN AND WILL DRAIN YOUR BATTERY. PICTURE IT LIKE LEAVING THE LIGHTS ON IN YOUR CAR OVERNIGHT IN WINTER.COME MORNING GUESS WHAT. I LOVE THE LIVE VIEW AND USE IT WITH THE GRID IN PLACE. IT IS WONDERFULL FOR CHECKING YOU D.O.F. AND FOCUS. BUT DO NOT I REPEAT DO NOT LEAVE IT ON FOR EXTENDED PERIODS OF TIME AS BATTERIES DEPLETE AND YOUR CAMRA SENSOR WILL HEAT UP.THIS MORE SO IN WARMER CLIMATES WHERE I RESIDE. CONSIDER BUYING ANOTHER BATTERY AS A SPARE BACKUP. HPE THIS HELPS :thumbup:
USING LIVE MODE EXTENSIVELY CAN AND WILL DRAIN YOU... (show quote)


Thanks for the heads-up. Extra batteries are essential but I hadn't heard about the sensor heating up. Do you mind sharing with us where you got that information about the sensors or is it just from your personal experience. What are the symptoms and consequences of a overheated sensor? I don't recall hearing anything from Canon about that, or anyone else for that matter, but then Canon isn't real big on bulletins. Thanks again. I just googled "5d MkII overheating" and didn't read anything about it actually happening but instead I saw several warnings that it "might" but that was mostly in conjunction with shooting video - long takes. Maybe your source can shed some more light on the prospects. I'd sure hate to burn my sensor up.

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Oct 4, 2011 11:56:16   #
PJT
 
I have actually felt my camera become slightly warmer when using live view for an extended period. At first I noticed that my low battery light came on and then felt the slightly warm body. I used to sell professional camera equipment for a large Photographic dealer in Massachusetts. I've sold equipment for all the major brands in 35mm,medium format, and view cameras. I am still a professional photographer specializing in Weddings,and group functions. During this time I made numerous friends with sales reps and techs. I called a very close friend in New York and had an enlightening conversation with him. He works for Cannon. He confirmed my findings but stated that this only occurs with extended use over a long period. It will result in a pixalating image and photograph. If it occurs which it seldom will, when the digital sensor kools down all functions with return to normal. He likened it to a home computer that has been left on without any kooling fans running. Eventually the electrically induced heat becomes to much and alarms will be noticed. Again because I have felt this heat and because I live in Florida this naturally is a concern to me. You are right about the extensive video usage heat by the way. Hope this helps :thumbup:

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Oct 4, 2011 12:50:59   #
gessman
 
PJT wrote:
I have actually felt my camera become slightly warmer when using live view for an extended period. At first I noticed that my low battery light came on and then felt the slightly warm body. I used to sell professional camera equipment for a large Photographic dealer in Massachusetts. I've sold equipment for all the major brands in 35mm,medium format, and view cameras. I am still a professional photographer specializing in Weddings,and group functions. During this time I made numerous friends with sales reps and techs. I called a very close friend in New York and had an enlightening conversation with him. He works for Cannon. He confirmed my findings but stated that this only occurs with extended use over a long period. It will result in a pixalating image and photograph. If it occurs which it seldom will, when the digital sensor kools down all functions with return to normal. He likened it to a home computer that has been left on without any kooling fans running. Eventually the electrically induced heat becomes to much and alarms will be noticed. Again because I have felt this heat and because I live in Florida this naturally is a concern to me. You are right about the extensive video usage heat by the way. Hope this helps :thumbup:
I have actually felt my camera become slightly war... (show quote)


Thanks a lot. That's extremely good information. I didn't mean to make it sound like I was discounting your personal experience and wasn't challenging you, but sincerely wanted to know. Last summer I spent a couple of weeks out in the sun doing some video, as well as stills, and the sun is pretty intense here in Colorado so that the body was warm didn't set off any alarms in my mind, however, we don't have the humidity expected elsewhere so that's not a magnifying factor. I did get some unexplained pixelation in some of the video footage that had to be edited out but I was pushing the outer limits of the quality settings and thought that I may have contributed to it with that tactic. I also developed some hot pixels which, fortunately, went away. So, by bringing this to my attention is a big help and I sincerely appreciate it. I'll be able to take that into account in future shoots. Thanks again.

I'll tell you one thing, we really need to be careful with when and where we open the body hole up on these units to change the lens. Dust on the sensor is a huge problem, especially with video. Unlike it is with stills, you can't hardly edit out a dust spot on video, especially if you have part of your subject moving across the area where the spots are, like leaves blowing in the breeze, more especially if your subject is dark and you're shooting at something like a light sky in the background. The tragedy of the whole thing is that the further you stop down your lens, the worse the dust spots show up so to get good depth of field, you lay yourself open to having your video ruined by dust spots. Perhaps many know this but it is imperative to hold the hole on the body down when changing a lens so dust can fall out rather than in. There are tricks to get rid of the spots in video but it has to be done one at a time and each time you fix one you degrade the scene and it can only handle about 3 or 4 spots fixed before the scene isn't usable and 1080p on blu ray put onto a 60" screen. I came away from that shoot last year with 19 spots on my sensor. I tried to clean it and it only got worse. I had to send it to Canon for cleaning. The $60 it cost was fair but the 2 weeks I didn't have it to use was a bear. Talk about withdrawals. I think the next time I want to do something like that, I'll go rent a body. That's tacky, huh?

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Oct 4, 2011 19:47:03   #
PJT
 
Renting a body and several lens is a great way to determine any and all future purchases. I'm a firm beliver in try before you buy. It will save time and money and frustration. Just remember that dealer you rented from. Establish a repore with him and by all means make your future purchases from him. (EVEN IF YOU CAN FIND IT CHEAPER SOMEPLACE ELSE) Building trust and goodwill wil insure a quick resolution to any problems that may arise and will at the very least earn the stores respect in particular that salesperson. Who knows where this friendship may take you.You may be invited to attend a seminar or go on a photoshoot. I speak from personal experience.Rember to treat all rental equipment as if it was your own. Also get an insurance rider,or purchase rental insurance if offered. Better to play it safe.ALSO CHECK OUT ALL EQUIPMENT CAREFULLY BEFORE RENTING.Make certain that all is as it should be.If a filter thread is damaged or the lens does not perform do not rent it.IMPORTANT rent only from a reputable dealer! Ask around at some camera clubs and stores. Make certain that they present themselves in a professional manner, and that thier store is clean and respectable. :-)PS This will help prevent buyers remorse..and keep peace in your house with the little lady.

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Oct 4, 2011 20:19:40   #
gessman
 
All good suggestions. Thanks.

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