A&P The 85 1.2 II can't focus for shit in super low light conditions.

Discussion in 'Lifestyle' started by CornUponCob, Oct 18, 2007.

  1. CornUponCob

    CornUponCob New Member

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    At least it can't on the 40D. Maybe it's a little better on the 1D series. It focuses fine for Vball (ISO 1600, f1.2 1/1250th) even in AI servo but at the last two concerts I've shot (ISO 1600 f1.2 1/100th ~ 1/400th) it can't focus worth a shit. Very frustrating as it could / should be a great concert lens. I can't tell you how many times I know I've focused on their hairline or eyesocket only to have it still focus on the Mic (and it's hard as shit to tell exactly what it's focused on in the 40D viewfinder.... maybe I should get a different focusing screen).

    The 135L and Tamron 17-50 focus just fine under the same conditions. I really blame the lens and not the camera.

    Of course people will say "user error, motion blur, people moved, etc etc" but trust me, my technique was fine.

    1st concert

    http://sammorgan.solo.photocore.us/sets/14225

    2nd (tonight, the shins (still uploading but OTAP is slow, so hopefully it won't matter.))

    http://sammorgan.solo.photocore.us/sets/14281
     
  2. mojito

    mojito New Member

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    its not any faster on a 1 series, the 1.8 runs circles around it. the L is pretty much a portrait lens, way too slow for sports :hs:
     
  3. CornUponCob

    CornUponCob New Member

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    I'm shooting sports with it fine, I'm talking extremely low light focusing ability.
     
  4. CornUponCob

    CornUponCob New Member

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    [​IMG]



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  5. mojito

    mojito New Member

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    :dunno:

    the 1.8 is light years ahead in AF though, manily cause its moving much less glass. I've used the L for weddings (which are low light) with marginal results. the 1.8 is one of the best bang for the bucks available, and it stacks up pretty well with the L

    http://www.wlcastleman.com/equip/reviews/85mm/index.htm
     
  6. mojito

    mojito New Member

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    how are you AF-ing?
     
  7. 00soul

    00soul halfsharkalligatorhalfman

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    are you using one focus point or all? maybe try using one and using the custom function to use one of the rear buttons to focus...
     
  8. mojito

    mojito New Member

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    thats where I was going :h5:
     
  9. CornUponCob

    CornUponCob New Member

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    For the concert I tried both AI servo and one shot, but mostly one shot. I'd usually half-press 3 or 4 times making absolutely sure it was pointed at their face and wait till I can no longer feel the lens micro adjusting, then take the picture.... Still it would focus on the mic sometimes. I tried the periphery focus points in AI servo and one shot as well, no real difference (with the 85)

    And although the 85L is slow to focus, that's mostly near the min focusing distance, which in sports, the action is at least a few meters away usually so the lens really doesn't have to move that much to refocus.

    And although the 85 1.8 is a great deal, the L provides an extra stop of light, and subject isolation which is pretty important when shooting sports IMO. It's also got much better color and contrast and is as about as sharp at 1.2 as the 1.8 is at 1.8 (at least in my experience with using both lenses).
     
  10. CornUponCob

    CornUponCob New Member

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    One.

    People, like I said, I'm not an idiot. I've been shooting long enough to know how to focus.
     
  11. mobbarley

    mobbarley Active Member

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    your horizons are off.
     
  12. mobbarley

    mobbarley Active Member

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    in fact they are blocked by walls.
     
  13. CornUponCob

    CornUponCob New Member

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    Something's wrong with the ingest server. I'm on the phone with my site administrator now.
     
  14. mojito

    mojito New Member

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    just making sure :hs:

    its never been known to perform well in those type of situations, so its not like yours is a bad copy. a bigger brighter viewfinder could help MF or check focus :hsd:
     
  15. mobbarley

    mobbarley Active Member

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    no really, is your left leg shorter than your right? your football shots are all at the same angle.
     
  16. Derrict

    Derrict No, I am not Amish OT Supporter

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    omgomgomgomgomgomgomg... omg!

    I haven't heard many complaints about the 85L and low light focusing issues. Most of what I read has been that it's quick and accurate, especially for indoor sports.
     
  17. CornUponCob

    CornUponCob New Member

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    I'm not going to say that every shot is perfectly level (they never are when shooting sports) but what you're seeing is the slanting from perspective. When a wall in the background is not perpendicular to the plane on which you're shooting, it will appear slanted in the background. Focus on the players, not the wall.
     
  18. 19Godfather86

    19Godfather86 New Member

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    I pretty much only shoot concerts these days (which is a shame), but I've found that the sheer brightness of mics compared to the skin of people can wreak havoc on the focusing of any lens. I have a couple really ghetto techniques, like intentionally focusing on the mic, holding the focus, and physically moving the camera forward, can work around really difficult situations. Or sometimes when I take a shot from a particular spot that has really good focus, I'll flip off my autofocus and snap off a few more from that same distance for good measure/better/different composition. Yeah, ghetto I know, but you gotta do whatcha gotta do.
     
  19. CornUponCob

    CornUponCob New Member

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    I have a 580, that's not a bad idea, although I haven't yet figured out how to get it to only assist with focusing and not fire the flash.

    Of course, I haven't looked very hard.
     
  20. mojito

    mojito New Member

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    check the camera, not the flash ;)
     
  21. Derrict

    Derrict No, I am not Amish OT Supporter

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    Custom Functions Menu.
     

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