Annoying focus issue?

Starskream666

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I have a canon 60d. Bought it new.

I noticed a while ago, i was just playing with my 50mm seeing how sharp i could focus on this little statue ornament thing i had... I had the camera on single shoot focus mode (can't remember the name... not ai servo and not the other one hah)

When I focused through the viewfinder at say the head... it would look in focus but when i took the picture it would be slightly out of focus :/ id have to aim my focus at its chest to get the head in focus or something like that... basically i'm saying where I was actually focusing, the shots weren't coming out focus'd.... but were focused in the viewfinder.

Any ideas?
 

Josh66

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Under the rubber eyecup, there is a little wheel that adjusts the focus of what you see in the viewfinder - this may have moved.
 

KmH

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What Josh is referring to is known as the diopter adjustment.

See page 39: Basic Operation - Adjusting the Viewfinder Clarity - of your Canon 60D users manual.
 
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Starskream666

Starskream666

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Ah no I know what you mean but its not that... if it were that then it would look blurry through the viewfinder not sharp.
 
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Starskream666

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someone on another thread mentioned something about maybe a smudge being on a guys sensor which caused this problem
 

cptkid

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is it just with your 50 or does it happen with other lenses?
 

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You can't see the image sensor in the viewfinder.
The main and secondary mirrors are between the image sensor, and the viewfinder and the shutter curtains are closed.
 

Josh66

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someone on another thread mentioned something about maybe a smudge being on a guys sensor which caused this problem

I believe that may have been me. That thread had sample photos though, and that explanation seemed at the time to be one of the things that could have possibly caused the issue that person was having. Anyway, after more information, it seems to not be the actual issue.

In general, dust (or whatever), when visible though the viewfinder is most likely on the focusing screen - in which case it is physically not possible for it to also be in the resulting photo. Dust that is on the sensor (which can be noticed in the resulting photo) can never be seen through the viewfinder. (One exception might be live view.)
 

bratkinson

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It sounds like you are attempting to do manual focus using only the viewfinder. With most (all?) non-L series lenses, the switch on the lens must be set to MF rather than AF or unpredictable results may occur. While in manual focus, unless you have a film camera style 'split image' viewfinder like 35mm SLRs had/have or some other add-on such as a Katz-eye, it's near impossible to accurately determine if it is REALLY focused accurately through the eyepiece. For manual focusing, switch to Live-View, and the larger image will help significantly.

If you are letting the lens focus automatically, then your camera is probably choosing a different point to focus on than your small statue. It will usually select whatever is closest. Your 60D has 9 focus points it can choose from unless you choose for it. In One-Shot mode, the point(s) selected for focusing will light up in red when the shutter button is half-pressed. It may take several 'test half-presses' to get it to choose the focus point where you want it, then press it the rest of the way to take the picture. Alternatively, change the focus selection (see pg 78 of your user manual or download it from the Canon website) to select only the center focus point and then put that where you want the focus to be.

It could also be a case of a too-slow shutter speed as well. For hand held, you probably want to have a shutter speed faster than 1/125 or so to stop any camera shake from blurring the image.

Although unlikely, it's also possible that the lens and camera together need a micro-adjustment (aka, calibration) to get the sharpest focusing. Unfortunately, the 60D does not have that feature that one could perform it at home. It would have to be sent to Canon and they charge some amount. Sending it in should only be the very 'last resort' if all else fails.
 
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Josh66

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With most (all?) non-L series lenses, the switch on the lens must be set to MF rather than AF or unpredictable results may occur.

I think any USM lens can override the focus mode switch. If you're manually focusing with the switch set to AF, you'll want to be using back button focusing on the camera though.
 
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Starskream666

Starskream666

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Thanks for the post bratkinson but I did know most of that anyway, i can't remember what shutter i was using but it was probably fast enough as it was outside and a nice day. I always have the focus point in the center, just the 1 so i have conrtol of what im focusing then move the camera down or up with the one shot focus. So perhaps i was moving ever so slightly back and the shallow depth of field caused the problem.

Also I think what I forgot to mention is I looked at it through live view aswell and took the photo and I think it still happened. Oh well ill do some tests and get back to you
 

curtyoungblood

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it would look in focus but when i took the picture it would be slightly out of focus :/ id have to aim my focus at its chest to get the head in focus or something like that...

So, if you aimed at the statues chest, then the face was was actually in focus?

That sounds like your lens is back focusing.
 

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