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Author Topic: best way to focus - HELP NEEDED  (Read 14695 times)

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State of Play

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best way to focus - HELP NEEDED
« on: May 30, 2012, 13:28 »

I am currently using a Canon 600D with a Canon L Series 70-200mm F4 NON IS lens.

I am having real problems with out of focus shots.

Set-up includes:
Manual or AE mode.
F-stop 4
shutter speeds ranging from 1/320 to 1/500 sec. 
AI Servo
Automatic AF (9 points) or manual 1 point specific.
Spot metering/ partial metering
ISO manually selected (100+)
Drive mode continious

The main issue I have is that 9 times out of 10 the focus is on the wrong part of the shot. The AF points seem to latch on to the background, leaves, branches etc. Or basically anywhere where I don't want the focus to be. I know that using F4 gives me a shallow depth of field so there really isn't room for error, but If I try using F9 or above I have to have the ISO up so much to even get a half decent lit shot if at all (shooting in woods).

I have also tried using manual focus but I find this even more difficult as I only have a split second to get it dialled in.

I have also tried to pre focus on a specific point, then wait for the rider, and snap. Again there really isn't any room for error with this method if I use F4.

Should I be using AutoFocus at all?
If so is it better to select an AF point or have this on automatic?
Or would it be better to learn how to use manual focus properly?
Or use pre-focus?
Should I use single shot or burst mode?
Should I be looking at using a higher F-stop, if so what would be best for this lens?
Should I keep the button half pressed whilst tracking the rider before shooting?
If the ISO is low and the image is too dark does this affect the accuracy of the pre-focus?
What light metering method works best, or what modes should I avoid?

I would really appreciate it, if anyone could answer any of the above questions or explain there chosen method of shooting.


« Last Edit: May 30, 2012, 13:51 by State of Play »


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Re: best way to focus - HELP NEEDED
« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2012, 19:05 »
Set the auto focus to Al Servo and push the shutter button half way to pre focus. This setting will track moving objects. You could also look at the shutter speed you are using or try using the flash.


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Re: best way to focus - HELP NEEDED
« Reply #2 on: Nov 21, 2014, 13:44 »
For a start action shots need to be at least 1/500th of a sec, unless you want to add movement into them.
Which focus point are you using on the camera? You could try pre-focusing manually.

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