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Author Topic: EOS 20D + EF 100mm f2.8 Macro USM Help  (Read 3661 times)
boku
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« on: June 29, 2005, 12:36:09 PM »
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First of all, at this range it might be a good idea to turn off auto-focus if you haven't already done so. Focusing at these magnification ratios is better done by presetting the focus and shifting the camera in and out. I use a slider rail on a tripod for this after setting the lens focus. Depth of field a high magnification is very shallow. Use your depth of field preview and stop down as necessary.

You are using a tripod, right? Just want to make sure.
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Bob Kulon

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boku
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« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2005, 12:55:04 PM »
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Thanks for the info, I did turn off auto focus after a while. Yep been using a tripod but haven't been focusing first then moving the camera in....will try that one.

Would exposure time have any effect?. also I have seen Macro Flash set ups where a unit fits to the front of the lense with either a ring or two flashes, not sure if these would be of advantage or not
Ring (or any) flash will freeze a moving subject, but it is a light source and you must recognize that it affects the scene as such.

You refer to shutter speed. That makes me wonder if the subject is moving. Are we talking about wind-blown flowers here? If so, the problem is motion blur, not focus error. For a perfectly still subject with a camera fixed to a stable tripod motion is a non-issue. If you have motion blur...

1) Use high enough shutter speed to freeze the motion.
2) Make sure the camera/tripod is sturdy and stable.
3) Use flash to freeze the motion knowing that the look of the scene will be altered.
4) Use mirror lockup.
5) Use a cable release.
6) A combination of the above, as required.

If it is purely a focus issue, than none of these apply and my former post will get you headed in the right direction.
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Bob Kulon

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ARD
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« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2005, 04:19:38 PM »
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I think it might be one of two things.

The first is vibration when the shutter operates. I have a cable release on order, but for now I am using the timer function.

The second is that I might have a smear on the internals of the camera. When I focus the shot it appears clear in the view finder, but the actual photo looks slightly blurred.

When I first got the camera it had a huge dust spot. I cleaned it, but think I have got a smear that is now only showing itself because of the magnification afforded by the macro lens.

Is cleaning an easy task?. I have read several things on the net, some say yes, some say no. As this will be my first proper clean I would welcome advice from people who know how to do it, which parts to clean, and what to clean it with.

Really appreciate all of the help I receive on this forum, hopefully soon I might be able to help others too
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ARD
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« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2005, 07:19:24 AM »
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Thanks for the reply, it will help me a great deal. Hopefully others will find it helpful too
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drh681
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« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2005, 11:28:21 PM »
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Well...?
how is your macro work progressing?
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lester_wareham
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« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2005, 11:29:37 AM »
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Use a minimum shutter speed of 1/160 handheald to avoid shake with a 1.6 crop factor camera like the 20D, more if closer in than 0.5:1. I tend to use >1/250 if I can.

For close-ups use a tripod and manual focus, a focus slide with a screw advance is very useful. Use mirror lock-up.

Be aware that natral light close-ups of things like flowers outside will often be spoilt by small movements due to wind.

For more mobile subjects like insects use flash. Canon do a ring flash and an expensive but very nice macro twin flash (on my shopping list). Alternativly standard flash units can be used on flash brackets.

20D owners can get good close-up flash exposures with the internal flash with this lens down to life size. I find I need to add 1-2 stops of flash exposure compensation though.

I tend to shoot at f22 for flash shots of insects although this is below the diffraction limit of f16'ish, depth of field is essential. I use the camera on manual to avoid getting any daylight exposure.
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lester_wareham
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« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2005, 03:46:03 AM »
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Has anybody used the canon twin macro flash? I've been looking at that, but I haven't tried one yet. It looks a little clumsy with all the cords and such, but gives a lot of freedom for placing the light.
I have reviews I found linked at http://www.zen20934.zen.co.uk/photogr....20Flash towards the end of the page but can't aford it yet. It does seem to be the macro flash of choice.

As I say you can do quite well with the 20D internal flash (surprisingly), it pops up much higher than the 10D for example. Here are some insect pics most or all with the internal flash http://www.zen20934.zen.co.uk/photography/...cts/photos1.htm
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ARD
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« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2005, 12:23:51 PM »
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Just got a EF 100mm f2.8 Macro USM, but I am having problems in getting the images in focus. They sometimes appear sharp, but when I go into 100% there are out of focus.

Could anyone give me some ideas of the best settings to use, ISO Speeds, Shutter speeds etc.

Many thanks
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ARD
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« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2005, 12:44:29 PM »
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Thanks for the info, I did turn off auto focus after a while. Yep been using a tripod but haven't been focusing first then moving the camera in....will try that one.

Would exposure time have any effect?. also I have seen Macro Flash set ups where a unit fits to the front of the lense with either a ring or two flashes, not sure if these would be of advantage or not
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ARD
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« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2005, 01:01:34 PM »
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Thanks for the help, I'm off to take some shots, I'll let you know how I get on
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boku
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« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2005, 06:10:08 PM »
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ARD, I'm going to respond to your PM here because this information may be of general interest, OK? You mailed the following...

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Hello there

Many thanks for the replies to my thread. I seem to be getting a bit better at this, but it isn't as easy as I thought. Because the lens is so good, I seem to only have to move a small amount to loose focus, or if I am shooting a Moth for example, I can get so close in that the head is focused but the rest isn't.

I am right in thinking that for Macro shots a study tripod is requied. I like the sliding head you mentioned, do you have any info on this, make, model etc.

Finally, and sorry to be a pain, could you give me advice on sensor cleaning. I have read numerous different ways of doing this, but I have read a lot of your posts and trust your judgement. Also there seem to be a lot of products available to clean sensors with, again, any advice would be much appreciated

I use a Really Right Stuff B31A Slider for extremely close-in macro focusing. To use this, both your camera and tripod head need to be equipped with standard Arca-Swiss style quick release fitments (a plate on the camera and a clamp on the tripod). They also make a gear rack model that is more precise and expensive, but I don't really find the need for that. Another manufacturer that makes this stuff is Novoflex.

Look it up at: http://www.reallyrightstuff.com/

Yes you need a very sturdy tripod, head, and clamp system. And - it must stand on firm ground. If only part of the insect you describe is in focus, then shake may not be your problem. Investigate:

1) Not enough depth of field - stop down to a smaller aperture
2) The bug moved out of the focus plane - use dead bugs  
3) The wind blew - take several shot and wait for a calm

Sensor cleaning? I've tried many things but never got to like anything that well. For the rare occasion when I need a wet cleaning, I use a Copper Hill Paddle with a Pec Pad and Eclipse fluid (Google for this stuff). Normally, I just hold the camera upside down in a clean area, give it a few shots with a rubber bulb blower, and then use that very expensive Visual Dust brush according to directions (again, Google). This isn't always perfect but is far handier and much less nerve-racking than wet cleaning. A tiny amount of dust is a non-issue for me. I seldom get to shoot any grand landscape skies where this stuiff shows that much and if it does, that little bandaid tool in Photoshop works magic.
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Bob Kulon

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Play it Straight and Play it True, my Brother.
drh681
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« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2005, 02:46:43 PM »
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I'm going to ask, how old is this camera?

I've been looking for some answers about close focusing problems with 20D bodies. (three! and all focused in front of the subject,  sometimes as much as 2 inches. it is driving me nuts)
the common answer has been "send it in for adjustment".
that is right, a 1400$ camera needs to be "adjusted" right out of the box!
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ARD
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« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2005, 07:32:40 AM »
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Camera is about 1 month old, from purchase. I have updated to latest firmware.

After reading all of the replies - 'boku' (thanks friend) in particular I think that the camera set up is fine and I just need to experiment more.

A focusing rail seems a very good piece of equipment to get, theres a few on ebay if you don't mind used equipment
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ARD
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« Reply #13 on: July 12, 2005, 08:08:30 AM »
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I'm getting better at it now. My initial problem was the focal length. I now shoot from anywhere between f16-f32.

Also I bought a focusing rail. This is a Manfrotto unit and it allows for much finer focusing.

All I need now is a more sturdy Tripod to take the additional weight  but overall the shots I am getting are good.

I'll set up one of those web based photo hosting pages later today and post a few up.
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Evan
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« Reply #14 on: July 21, 2005, 12:14:15 PM »
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Has anybody used the canon twin macro flash?  I've been looking at that, but I haven't tried one yet.  It looks a little clumsy with all the cords and such, but gives a lot of freedom for placing the light.
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