Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 52

Thread: Focusing Issues

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    1,737
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Focusing Issues

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	P7254488.jpg 
Views:	151 
Size:	202.6 KB 
ID:	47966Click image for larger version. 

Name:	P7254479.jpg 
Views:	146 
Size:	139.0 KB 
ID:	47967I have been less than pleased with my results lately. It doesn't seem to matter which lens I use, but the focusing is off one way or another. With my "go-to" 50-200mm lens it seems to be slightly off center. With my 70-300mm, I can't seem to get anything in focus; they all seem to have a diffuse glow look about them. I'm posting two from the other day that I shot just to test the 70-300. I've cleaned the lens, but beyond that don't know what else to do. My question is: Does anyone here know what causes this effect and the lack of focusing? Is it fixable, or just better to invest in another lens?

    Settings were Shutter priority, f/5.6, 1/1250, ISO 100, 300mm
    Diana

    "Art must always follow nature and never oppose it."

    http://www.resurrectionfarmphotography.com/
    (Website on hiatus until I am settled permanently once again)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    5,145
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 117 Times in 102 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    This doesn't look like a focus issue because nothing is in focus/sharp. Perhaps a dirty sensor? Somehow don't think so. Not nice, at any rate. What does it look like with "normal" lenses? What do you have?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Montana USA
    Posts
    3,399
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 90 Times in 66 Posts
    Feedback Score
    2 (100%)

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Diana, Does your camera have image stabilization? You used good fast shutter, but I wonder if you are punching the shutter too much, because, as Daniel said, the entire image is blurred. Others may have more ideas.
    ~Ken

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    1,737
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Thanks, Daniel. What do you mean by "normal" lenses? Like I said, I have to 50-200mm, and the 70-300mm Zuiko lenses. I also have a 50mm OM lens, but haven't used it much, although if memory serves me correctly, I had mixed results with that one, too. Really frustrating to have a subject lined up, camera tells me it's focused, and then I get these kinds of results.
    Diana

    "Art must always follow nature and never oppose it."

    http://www.resurrectionfarmphotography.com/
    (Website on hiatus until I am settled permanently once again)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    London Ont
    Posts
    324
    Thanks
    9
    Thanked 12 Times in 10 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    I would try it on a tripod with a remote shutter release - As Daniel said nothing appears sharp and
    as Ken said perhaps you are 'pounding' on the shutter- I had similar problems with an E-5-
    Monty
    -----------------------------------------------------------
    4/3 ◙ OMD E-M5♠ E-PL5♣ MMF-3 12-50 40-150R 14-150 75-300MkII -- 4/3 ◙ Good ol' E-1☺ 14-42 40-150 14-54MkII

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    1,737
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Thanks, Ken. I'm shooting with the E-30 which I believe has IS?

    Monty, I can try the tripod idea as well to experiment. My remote no longer works, but I can probably get close to the same result if I use the timer, couldn't I?
    Diana

    "Art must always follow nature and never oppose it."

    http://www.resurrectionfarmphotography.com/
    (Website on hiatus until I am settled permanently once again)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Montana USA
    Posts
    3,399
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 90 Times in 66 Posts
    Feedback Score
    2 (100%)

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Quote Originally Posted by Ddaside88 View Post
    Thanks, Ken. I'm shooting with the E-30 which I believe has IS?

    Monty, I can try the tripod idea as well to experiment. My remote no longer works, but I can probably get close to the same result if I use the timer, couldn't I?
    Yes, the timer would do the same thing. If the camera has IS, did you have it turned on?
    ~Ken

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    5,007
    Thanks
    386
    Thanked 62 Times in 56 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Diana,
    It does not appear to be camera movement or dirty sensor at all from those examples , but rather an AF problem, if it is happening with all lenses!
    My educated guess is either a dirty AF sensor at the bottom of the mirror housing,IS out of whack (Try with IS on and off to rule that out), or the secondary mirror has gone out of alignment .
    It could(hopefully) be as simple as a hair on the AF sensor that could throw off the AF. .
    First and least expensive attempt at a remedy- Get a rocket blower and gently blow out the AF sensor at bottom of the mirror housing by very gently lifting up the main mirror from the front lower edge (carefully so as to not actually touch the mirror surface). A warning to not use a compressed air can or much air pressure if you attempt thisThen test again.
    If that does not work it would require a trip to the Oly Hospital . repair estimate flat rate $153. found here ...http://oiaservice.com/


    David
    Last edited by dh202; 07-26-2014 at 06:53 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    5,145
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 117 Times in 102 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Hi Diana,
    By normal I meant not tele-zooms, like your 50mm or a shorter zoom, 14-54, 14-42 kit lens etc. To narrow it down, you could mount the camera on a tripod, and start with AF and IS turned off, using a remote with anti-shock set at something like 4 seconds, and see what you get. Do it in good light. Start my manually focusing using live view and through the viewfinder and compare. If you get a sharp picture, turn on AF, and see how it compares. Try different f-stops, and different modes too, though I prefer M for testing. If you still get sharp shots, try with IS 1 on, but NOT on the tripod. By adding one feature at a time you might be able to find the bug. If nothing is sharp, ever, well....
    A dirty AF sensor might throw things out of focus, but as I stated, nothing seems to be in, and a dirty sensor slows down the AF to the point that you don't get focus confirm. I had that once with my E-620 and they changed the AF sensor. The AF wasn't working well, but the camera still could produce sharp pictures. Still, no harm in CAREFULLY cleaning the sensor and secondary mirror. The E-30 is technically very similar to the E-620, and I still get good use out of my E-30.
    To be honest, the pictures look neither out of focus nor do I see movement, which is what you would get with IS turned off and having too much camera movement. I could envision a hyper-active IS producing something like this, but the shutter speed would have to be pretty slow. At 1/1250 the IS is of little or no value and best left off.
    Maybe you could post some more shots taken under controlled conditions, (boring test shots. Something static, like the wall of a building with something stuck on it for detail). That might help us to narrow it down. It takes some time, but you learn a lot about your equipment by doing test shots.
    It might need to be sent in, but it would be nice if you can avoid it.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    1,737
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    My educated guess is either a dirty AF sensor at the bottom of the mirror housing,IS out of whack (Try with IS on and off to rule that out), or the secondary mirror has gone out of alignment. It could(hopefully) be as simple as a hair on the AF sensor that could throw off the AF.
    I don't have a lot of confidence in myself to try cleaning, although it may come to that. The focusing issue seems to occur with all the lenses, even the 50mm OM.

    If the camera has IS, did you have it turned on?
    Ken, I did have IS turned on, I.S.1, turned it off, didn't see an appreciable improvement.

    By normal I meant not tele-zooms, like your 50mm or a shorter zoom, 14-54, 14-42 kit lens etc. To narrow it down, you could mount the camera on a tripod, and start with AF and IS turned off, using a remote with anti-shock set at something like 4 seconds, and see what you get. Do it in good light. Start my manually focusing using live view and through the viewfinder and compare. If you get a sharp picture, turn on AF, and see how it compares. Try different f-stops, and different modes too, though I prefer M for testing. If you still get sharp shots, try with IS 1 on, but NOT on the tripod. By adding one feature at a time you might be able to find the bug. If nothing is sharp, ever, well....
    Thanks, Daniel. I will give yours and others' suggestions when our weather improves (we've had severe storms, with more forecast). I really hope it's something simple. But then, this is the camera that switches from S mode to A or P or M all by itself. Maybe an Oly hospital trip is in the cards for me.
    Diana

    "Art must always follow nature and never oppose it."

    http://www.resurrectionfarmphotography.com/
    (Website on hiatus until I am settled permanently once again)

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    5,007
    Thanks
    386
    Thanked 62 Times in 56 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Quote Originally Posted by Ddaside88 View Post
    I don't have a lot of confidence in myself to try cleaning, although it may come to that. The focusing issue seems to occur with all the lenses, even the 50mm OM.
    As you said in your OP, it's happening with all lenses, then it is a camera issue ! That was why I suggested what I did. If you don't feel confident enough, you especially do not want to be trying to clean the secondary mirror or the main mirror, it is not likely to be the cause anyway.
    If you have any camera shops,( and I mean a camera shop, not Best Buy, Costco, or Walmart, etc. ) near you, most would be obliging enough to give the interior AF sensor a puff or two with a bulb blower to see if it helps.
    That is your first and least costly step in the process of elimination. ;-)
    Remember, never use compressed air can, or similar high pressure to do that.

    Good luck,
    David

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    1,737
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Thanks, David. I have a bulb blower I can try that with. It would be nice not to have to send it in to Oly for a checkup.
    Diana

    "Art must always follow nature and never oppose it."

    http://www.resurrectionfarmphotography.com/
    (Website on hiatus until I am settled permanently once again)

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    5,145
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 117 Times in 102 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Another question; was it really hot when you took these? How far away were the birds. It is amazing how little hot air it takes to completely muck up a shot!

  14. The Following User Says Thank You to Daniel Bradley For This Useful Post:

    dh202 (07-29-2014)

  15. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Upstate NY on the Hudson River
    Posts
    3,229
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 11 Times in 8 Posts
    Feedback Score
    10 (100%)

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    This may be a dumb question and shouldnt affect AF, but have you cheked your diopter setting? It would come into play using manual focusing, also your examples dont look like the best lighting was available, and they were shot with sun behind your subject, and I agree with Danieal that heat distortion can really mess up a shot, I even get that in winter when the sun heats the ground higher than air temp, anything at a distance looks like your shots even if in focus
    OMD EM-1, m12-50MM, OLY 12-60MM, OLY 50MM macro, EC-14, Nikon D7200 and D7100, Nikon 300MM F4 PF Nikon 1.4X II Nikon 80-400MM AF-S- G, Sigma 150-600MM C, Sigma 17-50MM
    Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/jimusny/

  16. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    5,007
    Thanks
    386
    Thanked 62 Times in 56 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Diana said it is happening "with all her lenses", which would indicate to me, that it is also happening at different times and subject matter...

  17. #16
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    1,737
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Another question; was it really hot when you took these? How far away were the birds. It is amazing how little hot air it takes to completely muck up a shot!
    Our temps here range in the 70s and 80s, so it's not extreme.

    have you cheked your diopter setting? It would come into play using manual focusing
    My diopter setting shows me that the subject is in focus, as well as the focus indicator beeping. I rarely use manual settings, unless I have the OM 50mm on.

    I am still experimenting. So far I'm getting mixed results. For the most part, even when the subject is in sharp focus in the viewfinder, the resulting shot is still soft. Landscape shots with the 50mm OM are all right, and if the other lenses aren't extended fully, the images are passable. It seems that when the lenses are fully extended, I can't rely on getting sharp images. I used a bulb blower to blow off the mirror, but no significant improvement resulted. I also did a search and found a discussion on DPReview where someone had identical issues with their E-30. One or two things were mentioned that intrigued me: One was to reset the camera, but make note of my personal settings so that I can reconfigure. However, calibrating the lens was mentioned, and I have never heard of having to calibrate lens to camera. Does anyone have any idea what they're talking about? Before I go and reset the camera, thought I would see what users here have to say.
    Diana

    "Art must always follow nature and never oppose it."

    http://www.resurrectionfarmphotography.com/
    (Website on hiatus until I am settled permanently once again)

  18. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    5,145
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 117 Times in 102 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Yes, lens calibration is very important and not very difficult. There are a few youtube videos on how to go about it. If you are getting good results from one lens (50mm), then I would guess it is in fact a calibration issue. Keep in mind that it does not take extreme temperatures to cause severe problems with long lenses, the longer the more difficult it can be.
    With both lenses you mentioned, you can calibrate both the short and the long end. Look into it.

  19. The Following User Says Thank You to Daniel Bradley For This Useful Post:

    cardcoach (08-05-2014)

  20. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    1,737
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Thank you, Daniel. You are most helpful. I will look into that right now.
    Diana

    "Art must always follow nature and never oppose it."

    http://www.resurrectionfarmphotography.com/
    (Website on hiatus until I am settled permanently once again)

  21. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Miami. FL
    Posts
    370
    Thanks
    17
    Thanked 4 Times in 4 Posts
    Feedback Score
    1 (100%)
    Real Name
    Mike Crosa

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    What tool do you recommend or use. I checked into you tube and I found the Spyder Lens cal and the focus pyramid. Know of any others?
    Mike C
    Enjoying the sun and ocean in Miami

    Olympus OMD EM1, EPL1, 17mm, 45mm, 60mm macro, 75-300mm, Rokinon Fish Eye, lens cap lens, Fl-36 flash, Think Tank 30I bag

  22. #20
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    1,737
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Those are the two I found also. Focus Pyramid has a free download, which I haven't looked at yet. I also went into Olympus' site and checked for updates. Turns out there is a firmware update for the 70-300 ED lens that I use. However, even if that helps, it won't address the same issues I have with the 50-200 ED.
    Diana

    "Art must always follow nature and never oppose it."

    http://www.resurrectionfarmphotography.com/
    (Website on hiatus until I am settled permanently once again)

  23. #21
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    5,145
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 117 Times in 102 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    No need to buy anything! You can do with very finely structured surface, like a smooth rug or a big piece of graph paper, or even news paper, and something like a pencil laid crosswise to focus on. If you use paper, you can make a strong black line in the center to focus on. I have also had good luck with a ruler with a black line across the middle. Set the camera up at an angle, say 25-30 on a tripod, maybe 4 or 5 meters away for the long end, with single AF point/center, and shoot away.
    There are also some test patterns online that you can simply download and print. (Google images- "autofocus calibration chart") No need for anything fancy. It is not rocket science by any means!

  24. The Following User Says Thank You to Daniel Bradley For This Useful Post:

    dh202 (08-07-2014)

  25. #22
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Saskatoon, Sask.
    Posts
    2,883
    Thanks
    14
    Thanked 7 Times in 5 Posts
    Feedback Score
    23 (100%)
    Real Name
    Don

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    I use a tape measure.

    Real easy to see if it is front or back focusing...

    Cheers, Don
    From E-510/E-30/E-3/E-5 to Nikon D7100 and now D7200/D800
    Don Kondra - Furniture Designer/Maker
    Product Photography
    My Acreage Bird Photographs


  26. #23
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    5,145
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 117 Times in 102 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Hey Don! Still lurking around I see!

    Yes, tape measure works fine also, but there must be something small and clear to focus on.
    I keep going back to those two pictures, and from what I see it is not a focus issue at all because nothing is in focus. Still looks to me like air disturbance. It is the plague of all long lens freaks, and I know it well! We need to see more shots.

  27. #24
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    1,737
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    Thanks for the tip, Daniel. I will see what I can find for a calibration chart. One other suggestion I read was that the AF motor had stopped functioning in one person's camera. But if that were the case, would I get a focus indicator, or be able to see my shot clearly in the viewfinder? It's a gorgeous day out, and we have a lot of bird activity, so maybe I can get some more test shots to post.
    Diana

    "Art must always follow nature and never oppose it."

    http://www.resurrectionfarmphotography.com/
    (Website on hiatus until I am settled permanently once again)

  28. #25
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    5,007
    Thanks
    386
    Thanked 62 Times in 56 Posts
    Feedback Score
    0

    Default Re: Focusing Issues

    If it was the focus motor you should easily see if the lens is NOT racking back and forth to find focus. ;-)

  29. The Following User Says Thank You to dh202 For This Useful Post:

    Ddaside88 (08-13-2014)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •