A problem with speed shooting....

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by JamesMartin, Aug 28, 2005.

  1. JamesMartin

    JamesMartin TPF Noob!

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    Hey all,
    I am new here... and new to digital cameras.

    I have got myself a Canon EOS 20D with a 17-85mm lens. When I am shooting moving shots (sports mainly) on any size setting (auto everything else) it seems that the camera is not focusing on the target properly, and it is not just because the target is moving closer to me, sometimes the target is moving 'with' me.

    As I have said, I am new to this whole game, so if anyone could offer advice, that would be great.

    Thank you
    - James
     
  2. hobbes28

    hobbes28 Incredible Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forums, James.

    It sounds to me like you need to change the focus to Servo mode. That way the camera knows to focus on the closest subject and can predict where it's going to be when you squeeze the shutter. I'm not sure where that change can be made but I'm sure you can find it in your manual.

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. JamesMartin

    JamesMartin TPF Noob!

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    Hobbes28,

    Thanx for you idea.. I will give that a go tomorrow when I am running around :) I will read up the manual and see what I can find out about 'Servo' mode.

    Thanx again.

    - James
     
  4. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    Google "20D" and "autofocus" and you find hundreds of people commenting on the lack-luster AF ability of the 20D. I've been using one for about 6 months now, and 1 out of 3 times it can't accurately (at least to my standards) focus on a subject that is perfectly still.
     
  5. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    As mentioned... .servo AF mode. Have you tried shooting with the aperature stopped down a bit more?
     
  6. JamesMartin

    JamesMartin TPF Noob!

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    ksmattfish,

    Good to know that someone else is having problems with the same thing.

    usayit,

    I will try stopped the aperature down and see what happens, although that will slow the camera down? From what I think I know, which I know is limited :) The aperature lets in the light, faster the rate, the less light (so the darker the image) and other way around for slower.??

    Am I on the right path? or wondering in the bush somewhere???
     
  7. Smith2688

    Smith2688 TPF Noob!

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    Yes, but stopping down the lens also allows more of the frame to be in focus so your focus point doesn't have to be *dead on*.

    If it's bright enough out you shouldn't have much of a problem stopping down.

    The picture shouldn't be darker unless you keep the same shutter speed. If you make the shutter speed one stop slower for every stop that you slow down the lens, you should be fine (provided the shutter is fast enough to stop the action).

    Sorry for being wordy. :X
     
  8. JamesMartin

    JamesMartin TPF Noob!

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    Smith2688,

    Phew, glad to hear that something I said makes sense :)

    Most of the time there is enough light, although I live in a town where there are all 4 seasons in one day.. so it is hard to catch up :)

    I will have a play and see what I can do, I have a tripod, so I might test out some shots with different settings and see how things turn out.

    PS:... some great photos in the gallery :)

    Thanx again.
    - James
     
  9. Smith2688

    Smith2688 TPF Noob!

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    hahaha...no problem. Definitely be sure to check out the Servo Focusing though, it should help.

    Oh thanks...it's kinda stark, but I'm working on adding things. There a few random pictures in there that I need to move to different albums (called something like Camera Tests or something).
     
  10. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Yup.. Smith elaborated on what I was trying to say. Stopping down the lens ( smaller aperature opening ) will increase depth of field. Since more depth of the scene will be sharp, there is more room for focusing error.

    If you want the greatest depth of field, you set a small aperature and focus at hyperfocal distance. Its a technique many journalists use to get the maximum depth of field and allows them to snap away with less worry about focus. Everything from hyperfocus distance to infiniti will be sharp. Ever notice journalists holding cameras above there heads snapping pictures?
     
  11. JamesMartin

    JamesMartin TPF Noob!

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    Thanx so much everyone :)

    I can see that I will have fun learning alot looking around and chatting to you guys (and girls).

    Thanx again..

    - James
     

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