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Author Topic: Canon Mirror lock-up ... is it so hard?  (Read 8276 times)
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« on: August 07, 2005, 07:26:33 AM »
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Ray,

If you shot with a 500mm or 600mm lens in low light you might find otherwise.

MLU is Canon's Achilles Heal, and it's high time they fixed it.

Michael
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Jack Flesher
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« Reply #1 on: August 08, 2005, 10:06:22 AM »
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I have an Olympus E1 and the MLU problem is handled marvelously: there are four memory settings that can record the entire camera setup.

SNIP

 When I first tried it out it felt like discovering an orgasm switch.
Orgasm switch -- LMAO!

Anyway, you can assign presets on the Canon DSLR's too, but it still requires entering the menu screen to activate it. As well-dampened as Canon's mirrors are, they still impart notable image blur between 1 sec and 1/30th sec (1/8th and 1/15th are the worst).  

Bottom line is if you shoot landscape from a tripod you find yourself at those problematic shutter speeds more often than you might think...  It is a royal PITA to have to enter the menu in any fashion to activate MLU.  To add insult to injury, Canon's MLU also requires the additional PITA two-presses-of-the-shutter-release for MLU; the first to raise the mirror, the second to capture the image.  A simple button push or lever activating MLU is mandatory for efficient landscape/fine-art shooting in the field.  PERIOD!

IMHO only,
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Jack Flesher
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« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2005, 09:53:08 AM »
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1/8th seems to be the achiles heel for mirror slap in most cameras, and tapers off up or down from there.  With my 1-series bodies I avoid 1/4, 1/8 and 1/15th like the plague unless I use MLU.  By 1/2 and 1/30 it does not seem to be a significant problem, but is still visible.

FWIW, mirror slap has always been better -- meaning less of it -- in heavier cameras.  I assume this is a function of inertia providing added damping for the harmonic oscillations.  Anyway, it would explain why the mirror slap in the 20D is more visible than that from a 1-series camera.
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boku
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« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2005, 05:48:53 PM »
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I am not going to mention the rumors of Canon releasing news of the 12 MP, 1.3 crop-factor, "tweener" (3D?) on 8/23 with a stationary pelical mirror that doesn't flip.

No way. My lips are seeled.
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Bob Kulon

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« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2005, 01:58:15 AM »
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Hi,
Michael was again complaining about MLU on the Canons but it has never been an issue for me.  I would love to hear from others if they also struggle with this or if I am missing something...

The way that I handle MLU is to leave it always switched on ... aargh, impossible you think? No.  I shoot almost all of my photos in motor-drive mode where MLU is automatically disabled. This means that if I then need MLU at some stage, I just need to hit the drive button to switch to single shot and take a photo with mlu enabled. Then drive button again ... multi shot, MLU disabled ... keep shooting. Does this not work on all cameras? Am i missing something here?

It certainly avoids the stress of navigating Canons menu structure.

Chris
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Jack Flesher
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« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2005, 07:00:17 PM »
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I am in the dedicated lever or button camp a-la Nikon.  Canon's menu-driven MLU is a PITA, plain and simple.  

Even more disturbing to me is the fact that Canon could EASILY offer a firmware upgrade that added to CF12 the ability to assign MLU to an existing function button like the LCD light...
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Ray
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« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2005, 08:25:56 AM »
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Okay! I'll try it, Michael, to see if the results are sharper. But usually when I use my 100-400 (640mm on the 20D) in low light (but not too low), it's handheld at ISO 800 or 1600.
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jani
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« Reply #7 on: August 08, 2005, 09:09:11 AM »
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When I first tried it out it felt like discovering an orgasm switch.
I want an orgasm switch, too.

Canon, are you reading this?
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Jan
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« Reply #8 on: August 08, 2005, 01:05:45 PM »
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You can get away with a single button press if you are using either the 2-seoond or 10-second delay drive modes. When you press the shutter, the mirror pups up, the timer counts down, and the shutter trips. For static subjects, this is quite handy.
Yes, I do that often. But still, when the wind is blowing and you are waiting for that break so the flower stops wagging, the 2/10 sec delay does not work...
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Ray
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« Reply #9 on: August 09, 2005, 02:12:12 AM »
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If Canon were to give priority to an MLU switch, that would imply one of two scenarios, (a) Canon's mirror dampening is deficient, or ( despite the best mirror dampening that technology can provide, mirror slap is still a major problem.

I can honestly declare from the bottom of my heart that I have no direct, personal evidence that either of the above statements is true.
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boku
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« Reply #10 on: August 09, 2005, 06:52:23 PM »
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I am not going to mention the rumors of Canon releasing news of the 12 MP, 1.3 crop-factor, "tweener" (3D?) on 8/23 with a stationary pelical mirror that doesn't flip.

No way. My lips are seeled.
Aren't they actually talking about a FF 5D?  Not that I'm spreading rumors, either.   :cool:
Well the way it goes on that other crazy website - the 3D "tweener" will have a 1.3 crop @ 12 MP and drop to a 1.6 crop (with fewer MP) when used with a EF-S lens. The pelical mirror permits the extended-back EF-S to mount.

I just saw the 5D PDF. Obviously, one of these rumors (or both) are wrong since they would not release both in that price range (both rumored at $3.5K). If either of these fly, I am an early adopter. And that, is no rumor.
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Bob Kulon

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Ray
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« Reply #11 on: August 09, 2005, 10:23:23 AM »
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 Anyway, it would explain why the mirror slap in the 20D is more visible than that from a 1-series camera.
Jack,
Where are the tests or reports that show this? If the effects are less visible on a 1 series camera, then mirror slap is even less of a problem than I imagine because it's not too bad with a 100-400 zoom on the 20D. I haven't tested other lenses with the 20D, but the fact that the 100-400/20D is almost perfectly balanced at the point it fixes to the tripod probably helps.
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Jack Flesher
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« Reply #12 on: August 09, 2005, 11:39:23 AM »
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Well, that sort of defeats the whole purpose if you've got to dig through and activate MLU first, doesn't it.
Agreed, but  I was just pointing out that the single button press does indeed work as described in conjunction with the self-timer.  Nowhere have I agreed it is an efficient solution, in fact I am stating the opposite.
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« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2005, 07:06:50 PM »
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I am in the dedicated lever or button camp a-la Nikon.  Canon's menu-driven MLU is a PITA, plain and simple.
You can count me in on that one (as per my big wish-list to Canon for the next camera).

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Even more disturbing to me is the fact that Canon could EASILY offer a firmware upgrade that added to CF12 the ability to assign MLU to an existing function button like the LCD light...
Yes.

I wonder how difficult it would be to reverse-engineer the firmware of these cameras ...

That's something else than Open RAW that we could find useful; Open firmware, as long as it's possible to reinstall an original Canon firmware to "reset" the camera if something goes wrong.
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Jan
dturina
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« Reply #14 on: August 08, 2005, 04:02:49 AM »
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I have an Olympus E1 and the MLU problem is handled marvelously: there are four memory settings that can record the entire camera setup. I have one for normal handheld shooting, and one for tripod, with MLU, dark frame reduction, remote release and what not. All it takes is to press a button, and you have de facto prepared the camera for a different way of shooting, and with another command you can switch it back. When I first tried it out it felt like discovering an orgasm switch.
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Danijel
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« Reply #15 on: August 08, 2005, 12:22:08 PM »
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To add insult to injury, Canon's MLU also requires the additional PITA two-presses-of-the-shutter-release for MLU; the first to raise the mirror, the second to capture the image.  A simple button push or lever activating MLU is mandatory for efficient landscape/fine-art shooting in the field.  PERIOD!
You can get away with a single button press if you are using either the 2-seoond or 10-second delay drive modes. When you press the shutter, the mirror pups up, the timer counts down, and the shutter trips. For static subjects, this is quite handy.
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Jack Flesher
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« Reply #16 on: August 08, 2005, 11:00:22 PM »
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"As well-dampened as Canon's mirrors are, they still impart notable image blur between 1 sec and 1/30th sec."

If the mirrors were indeed well dampened, this statement wouldn't be needed. Canon's film camera mirrors appear to be dampened far better than their digital cousins. The Nikon film cameras I used to shoot with were so well dampened, that I rarely used MLU at all.

"You can get away with a single button press if you are using either the 2-seoond or 10-second delay drive modes. When you press the shutter, the mirror pups up, the timer counts down, and the shutter trip"

Unless I'm missing how to do this, and I just referenced the entire manual, neither my 1Ds or 1DsMKII, when operated in either 2 or 10 second delay, flip the mirror up at the beginning of the sequence, only at the end of the delay just prior to the shutter opening. This would be great if it actually worked.
No offense, but one of my last film cameras was the Nikon F5, and even its mirror casued visible image degredation in the 1/2 to 1/30th second range.  The EOS 1V was the same.  Granted, they were both far superior to earlier offerings like the Nikon F3 and Canon F1, but they still showed the problem of mirror harmonics.

The single button press does indeed work with Canon bodies;  when CF 12 (MLU) is activated along with the 2sec or 10sec self timer, you press the shutter release, the mirror pops up and the timer starts, 2 or 10 seconds later the exposure occurs and the mirror drops.  

With the D-Rebel it works the same way, except the 10sec timer automatically becomes a 2sec timer when used in conjunction with the MLU function.
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Ray
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« Reply #17 on: August 08, 2005, 11:49:24 PM »
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I agree that mirror slap can degrade image sharpness between around 1 sec to 1/30th exposure, or even between 2 sec to 1/60th. The problem is, demonstrating this. Lenses have different performance at different apertures. My 100-400 at 400mm is sharpest at f11; less sharp at f16 and f8 and less sharp again at f5.6. Higher ISO's on a DSLR might not produce the same image sharpness degradation as higher ISO's on film do, but there is nevertheless some degree of sharpness degradation as one bumps up the ISO on DSLRs.

The only way I can think of properly testing the MLU advantage is to use  a lens (preferrably a high quality telephoto) at the same aperture and ISO for all shots. The only variables should be shutter speed and MLU off or on.

To vary shutter speed with a constant aperture and ISO entails using studio lights which can be brightened and dimmed, or waiting several hours for the natural light to dim in the late evening.

Rigorous testing of such matters is not as easy as one might think and there's lots of scope for myths to develop.
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lester_wareham
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« Reply #18 on: August 09, 2005, 02:47:11 AM »
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I don't think mirror slap is much better than it was 20 years ago. In fact my 20D has more slap than my A1 and not much less than my Ftb.

At least on the Ftb lockup was simple, you just pushed the DOF pre-view leaver further and it locked the mirror up.

I guess the current MTU is OK as long as you remember to turn it on and off. Why it can't be mapped to another button with a custom function I don't know.

Is it true the pro 1Dx bodies have the same menu driven system? I thought this was just to save a little production cost on a prosumer body.
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pfigen
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« Reply #19 on: August 09, 2005, 11:03:49 AM »
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"The single button press does indeed work with Canon bodies;  when CF 12 (MLU) is activated along with the 2sec or 10sec self timer, you press the shutter release, the mirror pops up and the timer starts, 2 or 10 seconds later the exposure occurs and the mirror drops. "

Well, that sort of defeats the whole purpose if you've got to dig through and activate MLU first, doesn't it. It was implied in the previous post that just using the delay would pop the mirror up first, and it doesn't. If I've already got the MLU activated, I'm probably going to use a cable and not the self timer at that point.
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