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micro adjusting my 30 1.4

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
so it was front focusing a little during my first test shots so i adjusted it with the aid of a focus sheet to see where the focus was. shot test shots at f1.4 and manually adjusted in camera until i got to +8 where i felt is was very close

took more shots and the focus was much closer. shots wide open obviously are not tack sharp especially when shooting an object up close. i took some photos of my mom and an old childhood friend of hers and they were medium shots but they came out a little soft but nothing that isnt expected since i shot them at f1.6 thinking it would come out a little better than 1.4 with slightly less CA. total i took like 5 shots all medium shots and only one actually came out tack sharp ( was a shot of 3 people together) the rest were slightly soft but not terrible considering i shot wide open. should i try to adjust more or leave it alone?

reason i ask is because on occasion i make money doing headshots and portraits and would really love for my new 30 to be sharp for individual shots but do not expect the sharpness of a 35L of course lol. i may be expecting too much i dont know either way im keeping the lens since i love the focal length and the fast aperture but want to make sure i get the most out of it

if you guys think i should continue to try to dial it in better what is best? adjust with the focus test sheet or adjust by taking headshots of my girlfriend until they are consistently closer to being sharper?

SIDE NOTE:
i did not post examples because of course im still happy but just wonder if what i am experiencing is normal and the shots that are soft are totally usable and i would even be ok selling them when the service is paid for as they are not nearly as off as my 50 1.8 is


THANKS OCN PHOTOG yall are the only ones i ask for serious advice as potn just plain isnt worth going to other than to look at the pretty pictures lol
Edited by Conspiracy - 7/17/11 at 2:45pm
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post #2 of 17
I think it could just be random variation in your camera's AF system. My 30 f/1.4 is more or less tack sharp but I find I get a lot of misses in any situation where the AF is tracking or if I'm using an outer AF point.
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
ok. i use center point AF. i have not played with any other AF point options i might look into that maybe my center point AF isnt perfect or something.

either way ill accept slightly soft photos when viewed at 100% because even though they are in focus i think they may be soft just because its wide open maybe, since they are barely soft and not off by that much at all anyway


wow just now discovered spot AF dont know why i never noticed that feature. but seems like it will be helpful in more precise focus while using AF i feel dumb as maybe that could be the cause for the focus not being spot on lol just needed spot focus haha
Edited by Conspiracy - 7/17/11 at 4:22pm
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post #4 of 17
Just remember that at 1.4 or 1.6, you have a VERY narrow depth of field.

Try bumping the settings up to f/2 or 2.8 and see if you have any better luck. Are you just trying to get the background blurred?
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post #5 of 17
BUT WHY WOULD YOU STOP DOWN? D: AF-ON to AF, focus, and recompose. 5DII focus is always spot on I don't even know why people complain, I've shot sports with it too. If it works at 35 1.4, 50 1.2, and 300 2.8, it'll work on a 30 1.4 on a camera with a much better AF system.
post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 
when i do headshots and portraits i want as much background blur as possible. obviously for the headshots i am going to get the most blur possible because i am closer to my subject but the only problem is with the closer photos i want to make sure that my shots are as sharp as possible. they dont need to be tack sharp, where it is now is ok for headshots as long as they are not printed really big. as far as portraits go since im further back usually shooting a medium shot or a wideshot of my subject at this focal length i know i wont get as much background blur because im slightly farther away so my DOF gets deeper. i understand that at this focal length there are limits and im not going to get bokeh like in telephotos.

overall my main focus is making sure i get the most out of the lens as possible. i am happy with it. and love the blur from the close up shots and really like the look of the photos when taking a medium shot of people as well as full body shots. i have not taken a landscape shot yet because i dont do many but those will be shot with a smaller aperture.

also i have not yet tested my lens at a basketball game but i am confident that if i shoot from under the basket at 1.4 i will get pleasing separation between the player and the background i think. and i cant wait to get some awesome action shots when basketball starts at my school again this lens is going to get some sick shots compared to my 50 1.8
Edited by Conspiracy - 7/17/11 at 5:17pm
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post #7 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Conspiracy View Post
when i do headshots and portraits i want as much background blur as possible.
Then... why did you buy a 30mm?
post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 
because i like the focal length and i still have my 50 which takes a solid heashot just have to take a few more shots than normal to make sure i get sharp ones since my 50 isnt that great but it will get upgraded eventually but not until my 1.8 is dead.

and the 30 doesnt take too bad a headshot since i take more of those than portraits

in the end its redundant to buy a 50 1.4 when i have a 1.8 that works ok
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post #9 of 17
Think outside the box, 85 and 135 are classic portrait lengths for a reason. 85/1.8 would have been a much better choice for headshots, IMO -- the perspective is much more flattering.
post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 
i know. already thought about it quite a bit. the 135 was out because of the price although i would like to have one. and would have got the 85 but realized that even though i do make some money doing headshots and portraits its still more or less a hobby anyway so i went with a lens i felt i would be able to have more fun with and still be able to do some portraits and headshots if i wanted. i did realize the perspective would be a lot different with the 30 but im ok with that as it wont be as bad as if i was trying todo good headshots with like a 14mm or a fisheye

i did a fair share of research though. and i admit that the 85 or 135 are more commonly used length for more professional and traditional portraits and headshots i might be able to offer something a little different than the norm although not waay different

i also make a bunch of money doing theater production photos for my school and that went into the reasoning for a shorter focal length as i needed a fast prime that can let me get close to the actors to use that over emphasizing perspective to intensify the photos. would not get that from the 85 or 135 and would not even have room to take full stage wide shots. but more than likely after next semester they increased how much they are paying me and i could buy a 85 1.8 after my theater work was done in like 4 months
Edited by Conspiracy - 7/17/11 at 8:25pm
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