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Out of focus. Why?

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by alaios, Jul 7, 2013.

  1. alaios

    alaios TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2013
    Düsseldorf
    Alex
    Hi
    I am starting this thread to get a bit of help with my manual focusing skills.
    I have noticed that quite a lot of my images are out of focus. I start today by giving one sample but I will continue as the discussion goes on to include more images.

    I like my self to use manual lenses as I do like the idea of focusing. Some time though my images look sharp enough on the display but once I am home the out of focus areas become more apparent.

    In the first image shared here
    OutofFocus - AlexPal's Photos (password: 1)
    I wanted the roses at the stroller level to be the same sharp as the stroller but as you could see they are not....

    How should I improve me when what I do is always to do at the red dots appearing on the screen (medium peaking of red color)...
    What should I do?

    Regards
    Alex
     
  2. Jaf-Photo

    Jaf-Photo TalkEmount Veteran

    484
    Mar 25, 2013
    If you are focusing manually then you should try to use the magnify function to check onscreen which parts are in focus. If you are using autofocus then you should try manual focus ;)
     
  3. alaios

    alaios TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2013
    Düsseldorf
    Alex
    Thanks. I thought that the peaking level is there to help you get rid off of the magnify function... I can try but I guess this will increase a lot the time I need to focus. 90% I use manual focus
     
  4. Poki

    Poki TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 30, 2011
    Austria
    You have to get to know how peaking works in order to use it properly and without the magnification. Peaking highlights high contrast areas, NOT sharp areas, as the camera is not able to determine what's "sharp". Usually, this works out nicely, but in some high contrast situations, it gets tricked and peaks the wrong areas.
     
  5. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Dave
    Well said.

    Also it is much better to post your image directly here.
     
  6. TonyTurley

    TonyTurley TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Apr 24, 2013
    West Virginia, USA
    Sometimes I cheat, if I feel Focus Peaking isn't going to give me what I want. I'll focus, then shoot a pic. Then I'll move the focus ring a little, and shoot again. I might repeat this 2 or 3 more times, then sort the best exposure from the lot when I get home. It adds a bit of time at the PC, but it also gives me a better chance of getting the best shot when I'm not certain.

    Tony
     
  7. Jefenator

    Jefenator TalkEmount Top Veteran

    876
    Nov 23, 2012
    Oregon, USA
    Jeff
    At least on the NEX-7, the MF Assist can be assigned to a very handy location - the AF/MF button. There I find it is very easy and fast to deploy and has a great impact on my success rate. (Couple more hints: a quick half-tap on the shutter gets you out of MF Assist & ready to shoot. I have the button next to the shutter assigned to a focus menu that lets me reposition the MF Assist rectangle - very helpful as my spot for critical focus is often away from the center.)
     
  8. Jethro10

    Jethro10 TalkEmount Regular

    48
    May 28, 2013
    This helps me a LOT. I was relying on peaking and wondered why I was getting out of focus shots sometimes.

    J
     
  9. alaios

    alaios TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2013
    Düsseldorf
    Alex
    In that case why should I have peaking when I will always see the image zoomed in my screen? Would not that suffice?
     
  10. Bimjo

    Bimjo Super Moderator

    Oct 28, 2011
    Washington State
    Jim
    Alex, you need to relax and do what feels right for you and not what somebody tells you you should be doing. Just because a camera has a feature doesn't mean you have to use it. If you want to use magnification and not use peaking then do it and be happy. :)
     
  11. alaios

    alaios TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2013
    Düsseldorf
    Alex
    Thanks for the answer. In order to comment more on that... The baby stroller I am shooting is highly reflective in the dark so I guess that makes the peaking function goes nut and give me wrong values on the focusing function.... The magnification in the adapted lenses does not work though that would allow me to check the area I am shooting if is indeed in focus. I am not sure if there are any suggestions on that.. like having an image in the stroller and focus there only before I take my shot or take multiples shots with the focus ring slightly moved back and forth. If someone wants to suggest something that would help

    Regards
    Alex
     
  12. Stevelnex

    Stevelnex New to TalkEmount

    4
    Jul 16, 2013
    Hi,

    Looking at the shot, the problem isn't focus it's your very shallow depth of field. I assume you were shooting at less than F2.8? The wider aperture you use, the 'less' of the actual shot will be in focus. That is, the focus plane ahead of the lens is a set depth according to the aperture (front focus/rear focus) and as you shoot with wider apertures, that set depth decreases.

    I can see that the flower is the point of focus on the shot and all parts of the buggy in the same focus plane are also in focus. If you want more of the buggy in focus you will need to stop down the aperture.

    Cheers
    Steve
     
  13. ChangshaNotes

    ChangshaNotes Super Moderator

    Aug 15, 2012
    China
    Colin
    I agree.
     
  14. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    ^^Alex, what do you mean??? MF assist DOES work when using adapted lenses...

    :confused:
     
  15. Bimjo

    Bimjo Super Moderator

    Oct 28, 2011
    Washington State
    Jim
    Yes, but you have to activate it manually, either by programming a button or using the touch screen (if you have one). With AF lenses used in MF mode if you have it turned on it magnifies the screen as soon as you turn the focus ring on the mens.
     
  16. alaios

    alaios TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2013
    Düsseldorf
    Alex
    I need to activate it then.. you are right... I guess it would not be hard to find the right button. That helped a lot . thanks
     
  17. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    I know ;)


    See? you learn something new everyday ;)