Odd G1X MK2 focusing quirk

Started 4 months ago | Discussions thread
Mr Sincere
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Re: Odd G1X MK2 focusing quirk
In reply to Ranlee, 4 months ago

Ranlee wrote:

Mr Sincere wrote:

Ranlee wrote:

Dale Buhanan wrote:

That is very annoying and downright scary to those of us contemplating getting this camera. I can't imagine what could make it behave that way. It also seems to be affecting more than one camera. I know that misery loves company. But not so much in this case.

I hope this can be resolved, or that Canon will release a firmware update to correct the issue. There is too much good about the camera to have something like this spoil the fun. I am so sorry....

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kind regards
Dale

This is going to take more study I think. I'm sitting in a relatively dark room. 3 roof windows with shades drawn - early evening. There is about a 3.5' space between my roof windows with knotty oak boards (enough texture contrast normally but with the relative brightness of the windows I can barely make out the grain 6 feet away, naked eye). The MkII will not focus on any area between the windows while the windows are showing in the viewfinder. Zoom in to eliminate the windows and it may focus a little better, not much. Put the focusing reticle even the tiniest bit into any of the window frame lit up by the window and it will focus easily every time. Now the strange thing is that without zooming, simply aiming up above the window at the roof peak where there is no window in the frame it focuses just fine yet it is just as dark if not a little darker. Same wood grain.

Test 2, tried the same thing with my GX7 and 20mm 1.7 and my GM1 with 12-32. Both acted exactly the same as the Canon. Unable to focus in the area between the windows but no problem when the raised above the windows with no strong light in the frame. Both Pany's focus faster and are much easier to focus on a smaller objects accurately. In fact the GX7 can focus on little more than a pinpoint area but they are still unable to focus in the same areas the MkII cannot focus. At least in my inner sanctum.;-)

Long story short, I'm not sure its that much of a problem. More experience will tell. Also, I don't presume to speak for anyone else. We all have different needs and tolerances.

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Randy

Thanks for doing that testing Randy.

It's interesting to read you found that the GX7 didn't do much better than the G1X mk2. I was using an em5 with a few different lenses as my "control", and found it did reliably better in circumstances that troubled the g1x mk2. This wasn't surprising, but gave me some confidence I wasn't just picking subjects that lacked the contrast for CDAF. Again, I'm not even talking about speed, I'm talking about the ability to even focus.

If you find another subject that your g1x mk2 fails to lock on, try to move the focus point one click in any direction, and then try again. I've found this simple change makes a world of difference. It makes zero sense from a technical point of view, but I've found again and again that there's a large difference. Definitely feels like a firmware bug of some sort.

Thanks again for the contribution.

Your welcome of course but I'm sorry I haven't helped. I did wander around the house for a half hour this evening finding dark things the MkII didn't want to focus on and then trying your moving the focus point technique, and either fortunately or unfortunately I couldn't make it work as yours does. I also tried the GM1 again and once again it mimicked the MKII in focusing proficiency. I accidently left my GX7 at my woods so its out of the picture for now.

That's mildly reassuring.  Hopefully whatever I noticed isn't a systematic issue.  It's hard for me to imagine a mechanical issue that would vary from camera to camera that would cause what I noticed, but who knows.

You've probably tried everything but I'll drop a couple options anyway just in case they help. First, you can save the moved focus point to Custom 1 or 2. You might try that since yours is more sensitive one notch moved. At least you wouldn't have to move it off center each time you power up.

Thank you!  This tip alone may have gained my g1x mk2 a reprieve from a return trip to B&H.  I don't mind working with the focus area one click removed from center, and your tip does in fact mean I don't have to reset it on each power up.  This may be all I need.

Overall, in my case, I think I was guilty of expecting too much from the MkII as far as focusing.

I'm the first to argue the the g1x mk2 is fairly priced, but I don't think it's unfair to expect good focusing performance from a $800 camera.  But on the other hand, if yours is performing the same as your GX7 and GM1, then there's probably nothing to worry about.

I do wish the focusing reticle could be made smaller than its smallest size. I'm not sure why it's not allowed.

Have you noticed you can downsize it one notch?  At that smaller setting I found it a pretty good size.  You just need to click the focus area select button, then rotate the inner lens ring.  I'm sure you've already done this, but worth pointing out again in case you haven't.

Thank you again.  Very helpful.

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