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  #1  
Old August 28th, 2006, 03:16 PM
Jan Luursema Jan Luursema is offline
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Default Full frame, focusing and composition

Okay you guys with full frame camera's, tell me how you focus close subjects at big apertures.
We're always told to use the appropriate focus point to get the correct focus for those subjects. That's okay with cropped camera's like the 20D and 1D.
But with full frame camera's, all the focus points are more or less in the center! You can keep your subject in the center ofcourse, but often that's just not an option, composition wise.
So do you focus with the nearest AF point available and recompose, hoping you haven't shifted the focus plane too much and hope for the best? If so, how does that work out? Do you focus slightly in front of your subject, let's say on the eyebrowes or the nose to compensate for the shift in focus and recompose?
Or do you, dear I say, focus manually? Is that even possible off center, maybe you need some special focus screen for this?

A lot of questions, but I hope you can help me out a little here. Right now with my 1D2 I always select the appropriate focus point and shoot, which is often the outmost focus point. Eventually I will go full frame so I'm wondering how to do it then.
Another consideration is when shooting action you usually don't even have time to recompose for composition, since the moment you want to capture will probably be gone by the time you've corrected your composition.

Thanks in advance!
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  #2  
Old August 28th, 2006, 03:58 PM
Stan Jirman Stan Jirman is offline
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I try to use the closest focusing point. If the closest focusing point doesn't cut it, I re-compose with the closest focusing point. I have the camera set so that the back dial loops around the outer focusing points, which gets the job done quicly and easily. I try to use the center and upper focusing point whenever possible, as they are higher accruracy, but naturally that's not possible most of the time.*

I find the current AF to work well, except with lenses like the 85/1.2L where it often focuses only god knows where, esp. in lower light and almost wide open. Even in my home studio, when shooting my baby daughter at f2 in Servo mode (since she moves rather erratically) I get at least 50% shots that are nowhere near to where the double precision focus point was.

Oh well. In a MK3 camera I hope much more for better AF than 22MP... it's been almost a decade since they updated it!
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  #3  
Old August 28th, 2006, 04:04 PM
Don Lashier Don Lashier is offline
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I (almost) always use the center focus point anyway.

- DL
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  #4  
Old August 30th, 2006, 02:25 PM
Phil Holland Phil Holland is offline
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Ah. One million times I've wanted those edge focus points to be a bit more spread out. However, most of my lenses are full time manual focus and it's normally just a simple adjustment.

It does get frustrating if you don't have a starting point and your shot is locked down already though.
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  #5  
Old August 30th, 2006, 09:54 PM
Alan T. Price Alan T. Price is offline
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Default manual focus adjustment

If the subject is really so close that focus + recompose will cause a focus error and if I can't get an AF sensor on the subject, then I just use the middle AF sensor to get focus nearly right, recompose, and then tweak the focus manually.
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  #6  
Old September 2nd, 2006, 09:52 AM
Tim Chong Tim Chong is offline
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Try to use manual focus then do the AF this will help the AF to be more precise.
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  #7  
Old September 4th, 2006, 12:22 AM
Alan T. Price Alan T. Price is offline
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Tim, that will not work if the subject is close enough that the AF sensors do not cover the subject, and also close enough for the focus+recompose to be a problem.
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  #8  
Old September 4th, 2006, 10:12 AM
Tim Chong Tim Chong is offline
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well, if that's the case, I will fall back to manual focus.
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  #9  
Old September 4th, 2006, 02:47 PM
Jan Luursema Jan Luursema is offline
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Thanks for your replies!

So when focusing manually, are you succesful focusing with the stock screen? Personally I don't think I'm very good at focusing manually, especially without a focus screen made for it..
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