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11-24-2011, 05:19 PM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by lytrytyr Quote
Good luck with the ZeeK 85, JP!
It seems that that lens is like its ZeeK 25 stablemate:
a deep, quirky lens that can be frustrating at first,
but extremely rewarding when you do get the hang of it.

Let me put it this way: in the case(s) when I can get sharp focus wide open (very seldom as you can see from my OP) it is just amazing!
I even thought of selling it and try to get an FA*85/1.4 to replace it but that passed, gladfully !
There is obviously a lot that can be done with this lens and I will certainly do what needs to be done to improve my focusing technique.

Cheers.

JP

11-24-2011, 05:26 PM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
The biggeat problem in manual focus with *any* fast lens is that the actual DOF in the image is going to be shallower - perhaps MUCH shallower - than what it appeara in he viewfinder. Meaning some things that appear in focus in the viewfinder won't be in focus in the actual picture. That isn't BF or FF, it's just life with a focus screen that was optimized for higher brightness at smaller apertures, not for more accurate DOF at larger apertures.

It's easy enough to see the effect for yourself by shooting some text on an angle.- see how many lines appear in focus in the viewfinder, then take the shot and compare. Once youve convinced yourself the effect is real, next step is just to practice, teaching yourself how to focus in such a way that your inended subject is part of the image that is eally in focus, not part of the image that only appears to be in focus in the viewfinder.
The DOF of this 85/1.4 (at f1.4) is razor thin actually, and I am sure you've experienced that.
Of course, that is the dilemma I am dealing with: how to correct/improve my technique so the lens renders what it is supposed to.

Now I see that my OP was bit erroneous when I mentioned BF/FF, which obviously is not the case here. My error in judgment.

I am going to use this simple test of yours and see what is being "seen" (by myself) via the viewfinder and what the camera "sees" and captures.
High time to start using the LiveView and/or focus bracketing...the latter should be available as a selectable feature on the K5. Too bad they missed that.

Thanks for the post.

JP
11-24-2011, 05:55 PM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
High time to start using the LiveView and/or focus bracketing...the latter should be available as a selectable feature on the K5. Too bad they missed that.
I always wanted that too; do any manufacturers have it though? You could shoot in bursts, I suppose, and some shots might simply by accident be better focused than others...
When I'm close to the subject and wide open I sometimes find moving my head back and forth very slightly can be more convenient than making tiny turns of the focus ring -- that depends on the lens though.

Another thing that seems to help me is to focus on specular highlights, if they're present at or near the plane I want to focus on. My eyes simply find it easier to judge when a specular highlight is "tighter" or more diffused than when various edges look sharper than other edges. (especially given the problems with inaccurate portrayal of depth of field by the view finder that Marc mentioned) This can be especially helpful with portraits: I zero in on the specular highlights in the iris of the subject and try to get that spot of light as undiffused looking as possible. I have no idea how accurate or practical this is for others, but at least it keeps me from going nuts tweaking the focus back and forth.
11-24-2011, 07:19 PM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentup Quote
I always wanted that too; do any manufacturers have it though? You could shoot in bursts, I suppose, and some shots might simply by accident be better focused than others...
When I'm close to the subject and wide open I sometimes find moving my head back and forth very slightly can be more convenient than making tiny turns of the focus ring -- that depends on the lens though.

Another thing that seems to help me is to focus on specular highlights, if they're present at or near the plane I want to focus on. My eyes simply find it easier to judge when a specular highlight is "tighter" or more diffused than when various edges look sharper than other edges. (especially given the problems with inaccurate portrayal of depth of field by the view finder that Marc mentioned) This can be especially helpful with portraits: I zero in on the specular highlights in the iris of the subject and try to get that spot of light as undiffused looking as possible. I have no idea how accurate or practical this is for others, but at least it keeps me from going nuts tweaking the focus back and forth.
Thanks Pentup!

(Selectable focus bracketing) That is wishful thinking I suppose ...
I think you trick with moving the head back and forth a little while you keep shooting (continuous?) makes sense. Never tried it but I just might.

(Specular highlight) Something I have read somehere but cannot remember who/where/when. But that makes sense in portraiture since the eyes of the subject usually will be the main focus point (target), if I am not mistaken. I don't so a lot of portraits, save for my own family, but this sure would be something to practice.

Back to the business of the 85/1.4 and manually focusing ...

I just a series of 40 or so pictures, with different settings (mainly changing the ISO - shutter speed) in Live View and through the VF.
First series targeting small print with very little contrast at near MTF.
Second series targeting slightly larger print with higher contrast.

Most were at f1.4 but I did some shots in incremental "stop down" until I reached F5.6. This was to check for focus shift (I mean ... "check" and not "test" really) There WAS focus shift, just as described by the Zeiss company's response to a review which was quoted earlier here.

Camera on a tripod and remote 3 second delay used.

Findings (as expected) :

Via the viewfinder: most shots wide open and up to f 4.5 were OOF. That was using the green hexagon as confirmation of focus ... of course it did not do that right.
Via Live View: most shots were bang on (from f 1.4 to f 4.5).
Stopped down further (f 5.6 and smaller aperture): quite acurate focus in LF and with the VF.

Problem with Live View with this manual-focus lens ... the "zoom" in and out feature that would normally activates when using an AF lens simply does not work here. So you have to "approximate" the focus the best you can. There is no confirmation "beep" or "hexagon" either.
This is either normal or I am doing something wrong ... maybe someone can confirm this? I am hoping for the latter (being wrong) and rectify it.

I even tried a few shots with CIF but that was a total disaster when the lens was wide open.

I have not yet uploaded the files to my computer/Flickr, so sorry ... no pics to show yet.
I will do that when I find the time later during the weekend.

So that is my reoprt for today.
Tune in soon for more ... with pictures.

JP

11-25-2011, 12:23 AM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
...
Problem with Live View with this manual-focus lens ... the "zoom" in and out feature that would normally activates when using an AF lens simply does not work here. So you have to "approximate" the focus the best you can. There is no confirmation "beep" or "hexagon" either.
This is either normal or I am doing something wrong ... maybe someone can confirm this? I am hoping for the latter (being wrong) and rectify it.
...
You probably know this but I mention it just in case as using this makes a huge difference to me: you can cycle trough magnified views (x2,x4,x6,x8,x10) with the INFO button. While in magnified view, you can move the "window" of what is displayed of the whole frame with the up/down/right/left keys grouped around OK.
11-25-2011, 10:48 AM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by jolepp Quote
You probably know this but I mention it just in case as using this makes a huge difference to me: you can cycle trough magnified views (x2,x4,x6,x8,x10) with the INFO button. While in magnified view, you can move the "window" of what is displayed of the whole frame with the up/down/right/left keys grouped around OK.
Eh Eh !!

Nope! I didn't know this !

You mean while in Live View, you just push the Info button and you get magnification ... ?

Tells you how often I've used this LV feature !

JP
11-25-2011, 11:24 AM   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
...
You mean while in Live View, you just push the Info button and you get magnification ... ?
...
Yup . Really helps to get spot-on with MF in LV, you see what the sensor sees .
11-25-2011, 11:58 AM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by jolepp Quote
Yup . Really helps to get spot-on with MF in LV, you see what the sensor sees .
Great!!

Thanks again for another useful tip for my journey toward manual focusing success!!

Now, the wekend is just around and after a few beers tonight my guess is that the manual focusing will be easier .. !

JP

11-25-2011, 12:41 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote

Now, the wekend is just around and after a few beers tonight my guess is that the manual focusing will be easier .. !

JP
Don't know about that have you not heard of Beer Goggles. Caused me many a regret in my youth (once or twice i near chewed my arm off to escape when i woke up)

11-25-2011, 01:07 PM   #40
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1. beer goggles

phenomenon in which one's consumption of alcohol makes physically unattractive persons appear beautiful; summed up by the phrase, "there are no ugly women at closing time"

When I took her to bed, she looked like Halle Berry. When I woke up, she looked like Keith Richards!

I wonder if that has anything to do with my 85/1.4 lens "seeing" things it's not supposed to !?

On the other hand, after ingesting a few, the manual focusing and rendering should be top notch! :ugh:

Cheers!

JP
11-27-2011, 09:20 PM   #41
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There are drawbacks when using a magnifier with glasses, but it's still more than worth it if you are having difficulties with MF. It doesn't miraculously make it easy, but it does help.
11-28-2011, 12:17 PM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
There are drawbacks when using a magnifier with glasses, but it's still more than worth it if you are having difficulties with MF. It doesn't miraculously make it easy, but it does help.
Maybe that should be on my "want" list.

I wouldn't mind losing a bit on the info from the viewfinder if that will help with manually focusing.
That and a better screen should be the answer or one solution.

What sort of "drawbacks" are we talking about ?

JP
11-28-2011, 04:12 PM   #43
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So, what exactly should I do with this manual-focus 85/1.4 lens in order to get proper focus results?
As I mentioned earlier, I am not so concerned about what would show through the viewfinder as much as what would show as a final image.

Take a lot of pic's and see what they look like, I use alot of my Kiron manual focus lenses on my K5 and never had a problem with the final results.
11-28-2011, 07:02 PM   #44
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
Maybe that should be on my "want" list.

I wouldn't mind losing a bit on the info from the viewfinder if that will help with manually focusing.
That and a better screen should be the answer or one solution.

What sort of "drawbacks" are we talking about ?

JP
Just what you said - you can't see the whole viewfinder display all at once. i got used to it pretty quickly, and learned to scan about.
11-29-2011, 06:40 AM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rick Clark Quote
So, what exactly should I do with this manual-focus 85/1.4 lens in order to get proper focus results?
As I mentioned earlier, I am not so concerned about what would show through the viewfinder as much as what would show as a final image.

Take a lot of pic's and see what they look like, I use alot of my Kiron manual focus lenses on my K5 and never had a problem with the final results.

The big issue with 1.4 and 1.2 lenses is the screen in the camera is not designed for you to focus a really fast lens. it's an issue for all fast lenses. Upgrading to a canon ee screen is a big step in the right direction since it is designed for fast lenses. Alternately live view focusing works for some (ok if you are on a tripod but i hate live view freehand not stable enough)
Focus bracketing also helps (micro focus adjustments between shots.
In film days even with a great VF/Focus screen most guys shooting really fast lenses would still focus bracket. No reason for digital to be much different.
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