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Shooting with the Canon 5D Mark III

Focusing in Live View


From:

Shooting with the Canon 5D Mark III

with Ben Long

Video: Focusing in Live View

When you activate live view, your camera raises its mirror out of the way, so that light can get all the way through the lens, and back to the sensor that's back here. It's the sensor that creates the image that's shown on the LCD screen, so no live view image can be created when the mirror is down, and in the way of the sensor. Unfortunately, there's something else that happens when the mirror flips up. The autofocus sensors in your camera are located up here in the camera's pentaprism. Light from the lens gets bounced up here, and the autofocus sensors analyze it to calculate focus.
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  1. 10m 29s
    1. Welcome
      2m 16s
    2. What is an SLR?
      5m 28s
    3. A note for 5D Mark II users
      50s
    4. Using this course
      1m 55s
  2. 35m 44s
    1. Exploring basic camera anatomy
      5m 28s
    2. Attaching a lens to your camera
      4m 3s
    3. Examining batteries and media cards
      8m 35s
    4. Powering up
      1m 49s
    5. Exploring the menu system
      2m 53s
    6. Clearing all settings
      2m 5s
    7. Setting the date and time
      1m 55s
    8. Setting the language
      1m 42s
    9. Formatting the media card
      3m 4s
    10. Holding the camera
      4m 10s
  3. 25m 6s
    1. Setting Scene Intelligent Auto mode
      1m 28s
    2. Exploring the viewfinder display
      5m 51s
    3. Touring the LCD screen and the status display
      2m 22s
    4. Exploring the top-mounted control buttons
      1m 42s
    5. Autofocus basics
      5m 7s
    6. Metering basics
      1m 42s
    7. Reviewing images
      2m 59s
    8. Working with image playback
      3m 55s
  4. 39m 32s
    1. Exploring Program mode
      41s
    2. Working with exposure compensation
      5m 2s
    3. Using the lock switch
      1m 21s
    4. Revisiting metering
      1m 43s
    5. Changing the ISO
      2m 14s
    6. Looking at ISO speed settings
      4m 36s
    7. Exploring long exposure noise reduction
      2m 53s
    8. Exploring high ISO noise reduction
      1m 40s
    9. Using program shift
      2m 11s
    10. Exploring image format and size
      3m 59s
    11. Using the Info button
      2m 4s
    12. Examining level and grid display
      3m 45s
    13. Using the Quick Control screen
      1m 35s
    14. Setting the color space
      1m 25s
    15. Configuring multiple media cards
      3m 24s
    16. Using the feature guide
      59s
  5. 23m 15s
    1. Exploring focus modes
      2m 25s
    2. Selecting autofocus areas
      3m 54s
    3. Exploring other autofocus options
      3m 44s
    4. Customizing servo auto focus
      4m 49s
    5. Exploring autofocus custom functions
      4m 50s
    6. Using manual focus
      3m 33s
  6. 10m 31s
    1. Using auto white balance
      1m 48s
    2. Exploring white balance presets
      3m 7s
    3. Using manual white balance
      5m 36s
  7. 10m 47s
    1. Exploring Drive mode
      4m 52s
    2. Using the self-timer
      3m 38s
    3. Using remote controls
      2m 17s
  8. 52m 26s
    1. Exploring metering modes
      3m 26s
    2. Using exposure lock
      1m 22s
    3. Working with focus points and metering
      3m 47s
    4. Exploring Aperture Priority mode
      3m 0s
    5. Using the depth of field preview button
      2m 40s
    6. Using Shutter Priority mode
      3m 26s
    7. Using Manual mode
      3m 27s
    8. Using auto exposure bracketing
      6m 3s
    9. Exploring Bulb mode
      2m 34s
    10. Working with the Auto Lighting Optimizer
      1m 40s
    11. Correcting lens aberration
      2m 46s
    12. Exploring Highlight Tone Priority
      2m 25s
    13. Understanding high-dynamic range (HDR)
      7m 5s
    14. Creating multiple exposures
      6m 25s
    15. Using the mirror lockup feature
      2m 20s
  9. 27m 38s
    1. Modifying LCD brightness
      3m 27s
    2. Rotating images
      2m 36s
    3. Using the playback grid
      42s
    4. Enabling AF point display
      1m 18s
    5. Rating images
      3m 4s
    6. Protecting and deleting images
      4m 40s
    7. Using Quick Control during playback
      1m 17s
    8. Exploring file numbering options
      2m 43s
    9. Creating folders
      1m 10s
    10. Changing file names
      3m 12s
    11. Adding copyright information
      3m 29s
  10. 7m 57s
    1. Defining picture styles
      2m 0s
    2. Exploring predefined picture styles
      2m 1s
    3. Adjusting predefined picture styles
      1m 56s
    4. Working with the monochromatic picture style
      2m 0s
  11. 22m 28s
    1. Activating Live View
      7m 16s
    2. Focusing in Live View
      5m 32s
    3. Focus manually in Live View
      1m 25s
    4. Working with aspect ratio
      2m 33s
    5. Exploring other Live View options
      3m 36s
    6. Reviewing the drawbacks to using Live View
      2m 6s
  12. 12m 16s
    1. Shooting video in Auto and Program modes
      6m 39s
    2. Shooting video in Priority or Manual modes
      3m 35s
    3. Exploring movie playback
      2m 2s
  13. 13m 0s
    1. Exploring custom modes
      5m 38s
    2. Using the custom menu
      2m 56s
    3. Exploring custom controls
      4m 26s
  14. 8m 57s
    1. What are custom functions?
      35s
    2. Working with exposure level increments
      1m 34s
    3. Bracketing auto cancel
      53s
    4. Changing the number of bracketed shots
      1m 5s
    5. Changing ISO speed setting increments
      1m 34s
    6. Exploring the Live View shooting area display
      40s
    7. Enabling safety shift
      2m 6s
    8. Clearing all custom functions
      30s
  15. 8m 16s
    1. Camera and sensor cleaning
      3m 12s
    2. Using the Battery Info command
      1m 45s
    3. Looking at operating conditions and temperatures
      2m 3s
    4. Getting firmware updates
      1m 16s
  16. 15m 10s
    1. Exploring focus and composition
      5m 31s
    2. Using an exposure strategy
      5m 11s
    3. Controlling exposure through Program mode
      4m 28s
  17. 23s
    1. Goodbye
      23s

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Shooting with the Canon 5D Mark III
5h 23m Beginner Nov 08, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In this course, photographer and author Ben Long details the features, controls, and options in the Canon 5D Mark III digital SLR. The course begins with an overview of what a digital SLR is and takes a tour of the camera's basic components. Ben then discusses the camera's basic operation: changing lenses, navigating the menus, shooting in automatic mode, reviewing and managing photos on the camera's LCD screen, and transferring photos to a computer.

Next, the course introduces more advanced exposure options: program mode, exposure compensation, ISO adjustments, and more. After Ben briefly defines each option, he shows how to adjust it using the camera's controls.

Ben also discusses white balance options, advanced metering and autofocus controls, flash, live view, and video shooting. The course ends with a chapter on maintenance, including sensor- and camera-cleaning and care tips.

Topics include:
  • What is a DSLR?
  • Attaching lenses
  • Powering up and down
  • Formatting the media card
  • Holding the camera
  • Shooting in the Auto and Program modes
  • Changing the ISO
  • Controlling autofocus and white balance
  • Using a self-timer
  • Working with the exposure control options
  • Activating Live View
  • Shooting video
Subjects:
Photography Cameras + Gear
Software:
5D Mark III
Author:
Ben Long

Focusing in Live View

When you activate live view, your camera raises its mirror out of the way, so that light can get all the way through the lens, and back to the sensor that's back here. It's the sensor that creates the image that's shown on the LCD screen, so no live view image can be created when the mirror is down, and in the way of the sensor. Unfortunately, there's something else that happens when the mirror flips up. The autofocus sensors in your camera are located up here in the camera's pentaprism. Light from the lens gets bounced up here, and the autofocus sensors analyze it to calculate focus.

But when the mirror is flipped up, those sensors basically go blind, meaning your camera loses its normal autofocus capability. So when you're in live view, the camera has to use a different method to autofocus. By default, rather than relying on its autofocus sensors, the computer in your camera will analyze the image that the sensor is capturing, and focus accordingly. A practical upshot is that autofocus in live view is much slower than it is when you shoot normally. Your camera has some additional autofocus modes, though, that you can activate to help deal with this problem.

In the last movie, you saw how the Mark III's default autofocus works, and while it's good for a lot of situations, the camera does offer a couple of other live view autofocusing options. I'm going to go into the menu here, and on the very last page of the shooting category, I've got a bunch of live view Options. The second one is Auto Focus mode. It defaults to Live mode, which is what you've seen so far; that's where I get the one focus point in the middle of the screen that I can steer around with the multi-controller. If I pop this open, though, I have two other options. I have a really happy Live mode.

I think what this is actually referring to is face detection Live mode, so this will actually try to identify faces in your scene, and focus on those. And then I have Quick mode, which gets us back to using the camera's autofocus sensors, and it has a few different advantages over Live mode. I'm going to Set that right now, and go back into live view here. So things have changed here. I still have the box I had before, but now I have this other little box, which looks suspiciously to be the same size as one of the camera's standard focus points, and that's because it is.

This is actually my focus point now; this small box. The larger box is a metering box. So, a couple of things are cool here; I can meter independently of focus now, and I get faster, and more accurate focus. So this is actually a focusing point; one of the 61 that I have available. I can choose to focus right now on that focus point by half-pressing the shutter button, and the screen went black, and the camera beeped. So what happened was when I half-pressed the button, the mirror came back down.

That allowed light to get back up to my focus sensors. It quickly took a focus reading; once it had, it beeped to lock focus, and then it raised the mirror back up to give me live view. So when that mirror went down, my autofocus sensors could see, but my sensor no longer could, so my viewfinder went black. The camera makes a lot of noise and shakes during that also. The problem right now is I'm focusing on that part of the table, which I don't really want; I'd rather focus on this camera. I do that just like I would in normal shooting. I select a different focus point. So I'm going to press my focus point select button back here, and now I get this menu of all the different focus points I have, and I'm going to steer -- oops! Timed out there.

I'm going to steer over here with my multi-controller, and put it right there. If I wanted, I could also change focus point by using the quick control dial here. If I use the main dial, that will steer it around also. And this is showing me what focus mode I'm in. I can change that by pressing my multi-function button up here, and get all of the normal focus modes. In other words, I have the full autofocus system that I would normally have in normal shooting. So I'm going to accept that, and now when I autofocus you can see that it lit up green there.

It is autofocused on this point, which is great; that's where I want it. My metering box is still where it was. I can just drive that around with the quick controller, and if I put it on the camera, notice how my exposure brightened up so much, because now it's metering specifically off of the camera here. I think that's a little bright, so I'm going to ask it to underexpose, and try to pull it back down to a more reasonable exposure. If you're not sure of what a more reasonable exposure might be, then you'd probably want to bring up your histogram, because your histogram will update in real time as you dial in your exposure compensation.

If I didn't want to do exposure compensation, I could try to position my metering square somewhere else in the frame; an area that's not so black. So I have kind of split the difference here between the really bright where it was, and the really black over here, and I am getting a different exposure that way. So these are all ways that I can control exposure, in addition to just changing shutter speed and aperture. It's difficult to tell whether this is a faster way of focusing than using the normal Live mode. Live mode can take time to search around, but with this, I have got to wait through the process of it raising and lowering its mirror.

Most of the time, this probably will be a little bit faster. More importantly, it's going to be more accurate. There are going to be many times where you cannot get the live focusing mode to work. In fact, our original example was that way. Live focus could not focus on this point of the table, but in the regular quick focus mode, I can. So if you're having trouble focusing live view, you might want to change to this focus mode, because it's far more capable.

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