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06-21-2021, 11:32 AM - 1 Like   #1
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Is this mirror blur?

First, the K3iii is by a huge margin the best camera I have ever had. AF is precise and incredibly fast, and I have more keepers than ever.

But I noticed this: When I take a burst series (continous shooting, high), som of the pictures end up very soft. It is not a focus problem - so I noticed people discussing mirror blur, but that seems limited to rather slow shutter speeds(?) This happens to me at 1/1000 sec and faster.

To illustrate, here is a screenshot from Faststone showing thumbnails magnified to 100% of some deer I shot today. No 3 is very soft, and 2 is a bit soft. This happens regularly - but I still get keepers of course. More than with my earlier cameras.

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06-21-2021, 11:38 AM   #2
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Looks like hunting AF. What were your focus settings and what was the lens?
06-21-2021, 12:05 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by mtkeller Quote
Looks like hunting AF. What were your focus settings and what was the lens?
I think you are right, actually. I looked through some of the others, and focus seems to have moved all the way to the front.

The weird thing is I never noticed it hunting. Must have been really fast? And it found its way back to the deer within two burst shots.


I am using AF-C, AF Hold, center focus and AF assigned to the AF-button with the shutter AF turned off. I prefer the single center point AF since it lets me pick my object fast, for moving animals and such.
06-21-2021, 12:15 PM   #4
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You are using continuous AF and it looks like it was picking up the blowing plants in around the deer to me, or the deer that is moving through the frame may have been getting picked up.

06-21-2021, 12:16 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by MetteHHH Quote
I think you are right, actually. I looked through some of the others, and focus seems to have moved all the way to the front.

The weird thing is I never noticed it hunting. Must have been really fast? And it found its way back to the deer within two burst shots.


I am using AF-C, AF Hold, center focus and AF assigned to the AF-button with the shutter AF turned off. I prefer the single center point AF since it lets me pick my object fast, for moving animals and such.
AF hold has three levels (four if you count 'off'). What was it set to?

You are almost 100% defeating the new AF system by using center point AF. The subject recognition (which I guarantee you would have locked onto the eyes here) is only active in the various auto AF area settings. Use the smart function system to your advantage here. When I'm shooting action, I have my smart function dial set up for controlling the AF mode. One is AF.S with the 5 point selection, since then I can move my focus point using the joystick. (Press in on the joystick to recenter quickly.) The other two are AF.C with one being the full auto grid and no AF hold (useful for things coming directly at me or directly away from me) and the other one having AF hold set to medium (need to experiment some more) and using the smaller auto grid that I can move around with the joystick.
06-21-2021, 12:34 PM   #6
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Educate me:
If back button AF is used and shutter af is disabled… was the shooter pressing the button during this burst and pressing the shutter button as well? I assume so but just wanted to confirm.
06-21-2021, 01:01 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by mtkeller Quote
AF hold has three levels (four if you count 'off'). What was it set to?
It was set to low. Changed to high now, I will see if that fixes it.


QuoteOriginally posted by mtkeller Quote
You are almost 100% defeating the new AF system by using center point AF. The subject recognition (which I guarantee you would have locked onto the eyes here) is only active in the various auto AF area settings. Use the smart function system to your advantage here. When I'm shooting action, I have my smart function dial set up for controlling the AF mode. One is AF.S with the 5 point selection, since then I can move my focus point using the joystick. (Press in on the joystick to recenter quickly.) The other two are AF.C with one being the full auto grid and no AF hold (useful for things coming directly at me or directly away from me) and the other one having AF hold set to medium (need to experiment some more) and using the smaller auto grid that I can move around with the joystick.
That sounds smart. A bit smarter than myself, possibly. I know these things are very much a matter of practising, but selecting focus points while panning with birds in flight is beyond my multitasking skills I am afraid. But I am pretty sure that hold AF DOES work even when I select the center point AF (At least I have managed to follow subjects and keep them in focus even if I didn't keep them in the center - I THINK the center point is the initial focus point, but the tracking uses a wider area. Otherwise my damselfly-in-flight definitely would not have been in focus here, since I did NOT manage to keep it centered while tracking. (The photo is cropped to recenter the damselfly, but it was at the edge of the original composition)




QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
Educate me:
If back button AF is used and shutter af is disabled… was the shooter pressing the button during this burst and pressing the shutter button as well? I assume so but just wanted to confirm.
You assume correctly. This allows me to keep the button pressed when I want AF-C and let it go if I want focus to stay where it is. Things change fast and unpreditably with birds and animals, and I want somethng that allows me to stay in control without having to think too much first.

06-21-2021, 01:08 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by MetteHHH Quote
That sounds smart. A bit smarter than myself, possibly. I know these things are very much a matter of practising, but selecting focus points while panning with birds in flight is beyond my multitasking skills I am afraid. But I am pretty sure that hold AF DOES work even when I select the center point AF (At least I have managed to follow subjects and keep them in focus even if I didn't keep them in the center - I THINK the center point is the initial focus point, but the tracking uses a wider area. Otherwise my damselfly-in-flight definitely would not have been in focus here, since I did NOT manage to keep it centered while tracking. (The photo is cropped to recenter the damselfly, but it was at the edge of the original composition)
I'm sure it will continue to track once it locks focus with single point. However, this camera is smart. Aim it at something that it's trained to recognize (bird, person, animal, car, etc.) with one of the auto areas activated and it will pick it up. Thus, you don't even need to get the center point over your intended target to lock onto something like a bird (as long as the background isn't too busy or the bird is close enough that the eye can be seen). We should all do what works best for us, but I would encourage you to try out the auto areas for a while to see how they work for you, since those are the ones that have subject recognition activated.
06-21-2021, 01:55 PM - 1 Like   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by mtkeller Quote
I'm sure it will continue to track once it locks focus with single point. However, this camera is smart. Aim it at something that it's trained to recognize (bird, person, animal, car, etc.) with one of the auto areas activated and it will pick it up. Thus, you don't even need to get the center point over your intended target to lock onto something like a bird (as long as the background isn't too busy or the bird is close enough that the eye can be seen). We should all do what works best for us, but I would encourage you to try out the auto areas for a while to see how they work for you, since those are the ones that have subject recognition activated.
Thanks for the encouragement. I might. As it is, I spend an awful lot of time shooting things that a smart person/camera probably wouldn't - such as way too small birds flying way too far off. (Danish wildlife has been hunted recklessly with other things than cameras for centuries - flight distance is ridiculous).

Experimenting with smarter settings is definitely something I will consider as a holiday activity this summer. For now, let's see if switching hold from low to high has an effect.
06-21-2021, 10:35 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by MetteHHH Quote


That sounds smart. A bit smarter than myself, possibly. I know these things are very much a matter of practising, but selecting focus points while panning with birds in flight is beyond my multitasking skills I am afraid. But I am pretty sure that hold AF DOES work even when I select the center point AF (At least I have managed to follow subjects and keep them in focus even if I didn't keep them in the center - I THINK the center point is the initial focus point, but the tracking uses a wider area. Otherwise my damselfly-in-flight definitely would not have been in focus here, since I did NOT manage to keep it centered while tracking. (The photo is cropped to recenter the damselfly, but it was at the edge of the original composition)

You assume correctly. This allows me to keep the button pressed when I want AF-C and let it go if I want focus to stay where it is. Things change fast and unpreditably with birds and animals, and I want somethng that allows me to stay in control without having to think too much first.
That damselfly in flight is a pretty good shot - impressive. I have just moved from KP to K3 iii and find myself getting confused with multiple focusing squares appearing in the viewfinder , even though I am pretty sure I have set AF to C, Spot. Think I need a good tutorial on the K3 iii Af choices (not that I am an expert even on the KP AF system, but it seems a lot simpler!!!

So the K3 iii AF is able to not just recognise human faces and eyes, but even bird eyes? (Before anyone asks, yes I have updated to the latest software!)

Last edited by K2 to K50; 06-21-2021 at 10:49 PM.
06-24-2021, 07:34 AM   #11
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What about the custom setting on AF.C? Did you set it to focus priority? For both '1st frame action in AF.C' and 'Action in AF.C cont'?
I left the 2nd one in auto and I too got out of focus photos after the 1st shot.
I have now set both to Focus priority but no chance to try yet.

Last edited by sbc; 06-25-2021 at 06:46 AM.
06-24-2021, 03:59 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by sbc Quote
What about the custom setting on AF.C? Did you set it to focus priority? For both '1st frame action in AF.C' and Action in AF.C cont'?
I left the 2nd one in auto and I too got out of focus photos after the 1st shot.
I have now set both to Focus priority but no change to try yet.
I made some adjustments in these settings:



I think the second and third of these three did the trick - I set it to Spot. Now getting a single focus square in the centre circle.
Took 10 or 12 shots handheld of a bird in my garden and focus was great for the majority of shots - K3 iii and the DFA 150-450mm .

I thought I had already done this, but may not have done it as part of the particular User1 setting I had been using.
06-25-2021, 06:52 AM   #13
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Today, I had the chance to try out the focus priority settings and I had better success. There were still a few that were out of focus but I guess that is the weakness of the DA*60-250's slow motor rather than the camera's AF itself.
06-30-2021, 05:17 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by sbc Quote
What about the custom setting on AF.C? Did you set it to focus priority? For both '1st frame action in AF.C' and 'Action in AF.C cont'?
I left the 2nd one in auto and I too got out of focus photos after the 1st shot.
I have now set both to Focus priority but no chance to try yet.
Thanks! I didn't notice that setting, I look forward to seeing if that changes my keeper-%!
07-08-2021, 07:02 PM   #15
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I have also gotten random blurry pictures in sequences when shooting burst until the buffer fills.


I've tried af.c, auto area, hold off (af operates immediately when subject distance changes) focus priority on, subject recognition on.
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