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D30 & Sigma 170-500 Focusing Issue  
User currently offlineManzoori From UK - England, joined Sep 2002, 1516 posts, RR: 33
Posted (10 years 6 months 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 4184 times:

As mentioned in this post I finally got the opportunity to give the D30/Sigma combination it's first proper outing of the year at Manchester.

Overall I'm very pleased with the results I've been able to obtain but one (dare I say it) 'flaw' with this setup is a failure to focus at the short end of the lens. As an aircraft began it's take-off roll I would be zoomed out to 500mm gradually pulling back all the way to 170 as it passed side on to me and the push out to 500mm as it climbed out. However I began to notice that as I zoomed in to anything less than 250mm the lens would simply refuse to focus on the aircraft.

I then tried this by focusing on static objects and still the same problem. The camera is exhibitng no error messages and focuses fine throughout the range with my 28-80 & 75-300.

Anyone else experienced this and have a solution? Have I been a complete dufus and missed something blindingly obvious?  Confused  Confused

I'm wondering if this could be a low power issue? I only ask this as I've just tried the camera again focusing out of my window and it now focuses throughout the zoom range!  Angry

Yesterday was a beautiful day with great sun but my battery pack was a bit low on juice. Today with fully charged battery pack and pretty grey and overcast conditions it focuses very nicely thanks!  Confused

Cheers!
Rez
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Flightlineimages DOT Com Photographer & Web Editor. RR Turbines Specialist
13 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineSukhoi From Sweden, joined May 2006, 373 posts, RR: 8
Reply 1, posted (10 years 6 months 3 weeks ago) and read 4149 times:

I remember when I had a 170-500 on my Fuji S1 if the battery power got low then it wouldnt focus all that well so it may be a power issue?

Cheers

Paul


User currently offlineGranite From UK - Scotland, joined May 1999, 5568 posts, RR: 63
Reply 2, posted (10 years 6 months 3 weeks ago) and read 4145 times:
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Hi Rez

That could be the problem........but for all the time I have had the D30 and the Sigma.....not one problem with it at all. Maybe I am just lucky.

I do have some crap shots with the lens but user error as opposed to lens/camera error  Wink/being sarcastic

Cheers

Gary


User currently offlineManzoori From UK - England, joined Sep 2002, 1516 posts, RR: 33
Reply 3, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 4124 times:

Paul / Gary,

Thanks very much for the feedback guys! I think your right... as I was writing the OP I suddenly thought I'd better try it again to be sure I had my facts straight and lo & behold it focuses fine... with the freshly charged batteries!

Live & learn eh! Methinks I'll get a couple more batteries for the airshow weekends coming up to make sure that doesn't happen again!

Cheers!

Rez
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Flightlineimages DOT Com Photographer & Web Editor. RR Turbines Specialist
User currently offlineEGBB From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 4119 times:

I know Gary loves this lens and indeed has achieved some superb shots from it but I had this lens for 2 days some 18 months ago and found the AF impossible with it not able to lock on any moving subject

Derek


User currently offlineJoge From Finland, joined Feb 2000, 1444 posts, RR: 39
Reply 5, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 4107 times:

the AF impossible with it not able to lock on any moving subject

The next shouldn't be a reason for the problem on the short end, but what about the f:6,3 at 500mm? I thought most of the Canon SLRs stop the AF at 5,6.

-Joge



Bula!
User currently offlineManzoori From UK - England, joined Sep 2002, 1516 posts, RR: 33
Reply 6, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 4099 times:

Hi Derek,

It definitely does lock... and did quite happily yesterday at the long end of the zoom. I've trialled the combo at EMA prior to the MAN trip and it worked fine there too... at all lengths of the zoom.

There's no denying, it's no L glass but in terms of 'bang for the buck' it takes some beating

Cheers!

Rez
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Flightlineimages DOT Com Photographer & Web Editor. RR Turbines Specialist
User currently offlineRotor1 From Tajikistan, joined Mar 2003, 230 posts, RR: 3
Reply 7, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 4084 times:

When I used a 170-500 on a D60, I found that AI Servo focus was a disaster... the lens would not lock on an aircraft for any significant period of time. It'd get it right, then hunt a bit, then right, then hunt, and so on and so forth. Lots of blurry (out of focus shots) on that card... since then, I've used that combo on one-shot focus.

I tried the lens on a 10D briefly, and AI servo was a dream. No hunting like on the D60. Never had a problem focusing with a film rebel.

Maybe it depends on the camera?

-Mike



The best aviation photo I've ever taken was rejected by Airliners.net
User currently offlineAIRHEAD711 From United States of America, joined Mar 2002, 249 posts, RR: 2
Reply 8, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 4032 times:

I also use the 170-500 with the D60.I agree with Mike in that the AI servo focus was absolutely terrible.Exactly as he stated it would lock for a half second and then hunt for 3 seconds.Maybe it was user error but i'll stick to single shot for now.As far as the AF on the single shot focus, i've never had a problem.

Scott


User currently offlineGranite From UK - Scotland, joined May 1999, 5568 posts, RR: 63
Reply 9, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 4013 times:
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Hi all

I always use one shot focus with my D30/Sigma combo.

I never use the AI servo focus at all.

Cheers

Gary Watt


User currently offlineManzoori From UK - England, joined Sep 2002, 1516 posts, RR: 33
Reply 10, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 4008 times:

Yep... found that as well at MAN.... AI focus would catch for a brief second and then hunt for a few seconds missing many a photo opportunity.

We live and learn eh!

Cheers!

Rez
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Flightlineimages DOT Com Photographer & Web Editor. RR Turbines Specialist
User currently offlineDehowie From Australia, joined Feb 2004, 1060 posts, RR: 33
Reply 11, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 3990 times:

G'day
I found my best results with the 50-500 on my 10D where in single shot AF and only using the centre point for focusing.
I found it hunted a little if using all the focus points.
Dazz



2EOS1DX,EF14.2.8LII,17TS,85/1.2,16-35L,24-70LII,24L,70-200F2.8LII,100-400,300/400/500/800L
User currently offlineManzoori From UK - England, joined Sep 2002, 1516 posts, RR: 33
Reply 12, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 3982 times:

Thanks for the Tip Darren! I've toyed with single point and triple point on the D30... not noticed much of a change but I suppose if we generally aim with the middle of the lens then might as well focus with it.

That said, I read some other post on this very subject and it was suggested that using all three would be beneficial in terms of keeping the whole fuselage in focus for 3/4 frontal shot. Didn't quite catch how that was supposed to work really... it's not like the lens is going to be able to vary it's focus from side to side?

Cheers!

Rez
 Big thumbs up



Flightlineimages DOT Com Photographer & Web Editor. RR Turbines Specialist
User currently offlineGranite From UK - Scotland, joined May 1999, 5568 posts, RR: 63
Reply 13, posted (10 years 6 months 2 weeks 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 4010 times:
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Hi all

Sigma 170-500, three point single focus, Canon D30:

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Gary Watt - AirTeamImages



View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Gary Watt - AirTeamImages



View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Gary Watt - AirTeamImages


Cheers

Gary Watt


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