7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

Started 11 months ago | Discussions
Mike-G Junior Member • Posts: 48
7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

Over the past week my 7D Mark II has been unable to acquire small subjects (birds) while operating in any of the Zone Autofocus modes. I checked all AF settings (AI Servo on, ITR Off, cycled through all AF cases and Initial AF Pts, turned on and off Lens Drive when AF Impossible) and pre-focused the camera to a distance where the birds were flying. I'll double check tonight, but I didn't have problems acquiring a couple of aircraft in Zone AF.

Frequently I could see the bird in my viewfinder, but when I pressed the focus button, the bird disappeared. I'm not experiencing any focus problems in single point AF modes.

Am I missing anything in terms of settings? I bought the camera used about a year and a half ago and have taken tens of thousands of shots. I don't mess around with settings now that I've found a few that work, and I haven't dropped the camera (although I have been tempted to throw it into a lake a few times).

Until last week, the camera was able to easily acquire small birds like swallows and martins against a blue sky while using Large Zone AF. Against busier backgrounds the camera was more challenged, but that's more lack of operator skills as it is the camera's shortcomings.

I tried my 80D in identical shooting conditions using Zone AF (I switched bodies throughout my photography sessions yesterday and the day before...lighting conditions were excellent both days), and the 80D had no problems acquiring the birds against the sky in any of its Zone focus modes (although its hit rate was lower that my 7D II before the problem developed, which is to be expected).

Canon quoted $389 for the estimated repair cost (yikes!). Has anyone dealt with their repair services? How likely will they be able to repair it? $389's a lot of salad to fix a five year old camera; on the other hand, I'm not looking for an "upgrade" as there's nothing in their lineup that suits my needs. I guess it's either fix this one, buy a new 7D II,  or sit tight with the 80D until 2025 or whenever Canon comes up with a suitable 7D II replacement.

Thanks.

Canon EOS 7D Mark II Canon EOS 80D
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CameraCarl Veteran Member • Posts: 7,627
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

What lens are you using?

OP Mike-G Junior Member • Posts: 48
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

Canon 100-400mm II. That's another thing: the lens motor stutters at times when it doesn't acquire focus with the 7D. Haven't experienced the stuttering with the 80D.

cdmazoff
cdmazoff Senior Member • Posts: 2,826
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

Mike-G wrote:

Over the past week my 7D Mark II has been unable to acquire small subjects (birds) while operating in any of the Zone Autofocus modes. I checked all AF settings (AI Servo on, ITR Off, cycled through all AF cases and Initial AF Pts, turned on and off Lens Drive when AF Impossible) and pre-focused the camera to a distance where the birds were flying. I'll double check tonight, but I didn't have problems acquiring a couple of aircraft in Zone AF.

Frequently I could see the bird in my viewfinder, but when I pressed the focus button, the bird disappeared. I'm not experiencing any focus problems in single point AF modes.

Am I missing anything in terms of settings? I bought the camera used about a year and a half ago and have taken tens of thousands of shots. I don't mess around with settings now that I've found a few that work, and I haven't dropped the camera (although I have been tempted to throw it into a lake a few times).

Until last week, the camera was able to easily acquire small birds like swallows and martins against a blue sky while using Large Zone AF. Against busier backgrounds the camera was more challenged, but that's more lack of operator skills as it is the camera's shortcomings.

I tried my 80D in identical shooting conditions using Zone AF (I switched bodies throughout my photography sessions yesterday and the day before...lighting conditions were excellent both days), and the 80D had no problems acquiring the birds against the sky in any of its Zone focus modes (although its hit rate was lower that my 7D II before the problem developed, which is to be expected).

Canon quoted $389 for the estimated repair cost (yikes!). Has anyone dealt with their repair services? How likely will they be able to repair it? $389's a lot of salad to fix a five year old camera; on the other hand, I'm not looking for an "upgrade" as there's nothing in their lineup that suits my needs. I guess it's either fix this one, buy a new 7D II, or sit tight with the 80D until 2025 or whenever Canon comes up with a suitable 7D II replacement.

Thanks.

Sound like the garbage some of use have been going through with the 90D lately.  I find that going into and out of live view a few times clears this up... I don't know why.. But... try this..... it might help.

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When I'm not playing birds, I'm shooting my accordion....or is it the other way around?

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Canon EOS 90D Canon Extender EF 1.4x III Canon EF 100-400mm F4.5-5.6L IS II
Tom59 Senior Member • Posts: 1,349
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

Mike-G wrote:

Over the past week my 7D Mark II has been unable to acquire small subjects (birds) while operating in any of the Zone Autofocus modes. I checked all AF settings (AI Servo on, ITR Off, cycled through all AF cases and Initial AF Pts, turned on and off Lens Drive when AF Impossible) and pre-focused the camera to a distance where the birds were flying. I'll double check tonight, but I didn't have problems acquiring a couple of aircraft in Zone AF.

Frequently I could see the bird in my viewfinder, but when I pressed the focus button, the bird disappeared. I'm not experiencing any focus problems in single point AF modes.

Am I missing anything in terms of settings? I bought the camera used about a year and a half ago and have taken tens of thousands of shots. I don't mess around with settings now that I've found a few that work, and I haven't dropped the camera (although I have been tempted to throw it into a lake a few times).

Until last week, the camera was able to easily acquire small birds like swallows and martins against a blue sky while using Large Zone AF. Against busier backgrounds the camera was more challenged, but that's more lack of operator skills as it is the camera's shortcomings.

I tried my 80D in identical shooting conditions using Zone AF (I switched bodies throughout my photography sessions yesterday and the day before...lighting conditions were excellent both days), and the 80D had no problems acquiring the birds against the sky in any of its Zone focus modes (although its hit rate was lower that my 7D II before the problem developed, which is to be expected).

Canon quoted $389 for the estimated repair cost (yikes!). Has anyone dealt with their repair services? How likely will they be able to repair it? $389's a lot of salad to fix a five year old camera; on the other hand, I'm not looking for an "upgrade" as there's nothing in their lineup that suits my needs. I guess it's either fix this one, buy a new 7D II, or sit tight with the 80D until 2025 or whenever Canon comes up with a suitable 7D II replacement.

Thanks.

What exactly  is it that Canon is going to fix for $389?

OP Mike-G Junior Member • Posts: 48
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

Tom59 wrote:

Mike-G wrote:

Over the past week my 7D Mark II has been unable to acquire small subjects (birds) while operating in any of the Zone Autofocus modes. I checked all AF settings (AI Servo on, ITR Off, cycled through all AF cases and Initial AF Pts, turned on and off Lens Drive when AF Impossible) and pre-focused the camera to a distance where the birds were flying. I'll double check tonight, but I didn't have problems acquiring a couple of aircraft in Zone AF.

Frequently I could see the bird in my viewfinder, but when I pressed the focus button, the bird disappeared. I'm not experiencing any focus problems in single point AF modes.

Am I missing anything in terms of settings? I bought the camera used about a year and a half ago and have taken tens of thousands of shots. I don't mess around with settings now that I've found a few that work, and I haven't dropped the camera (although I have been tempted to throw it into a lake a few times).

Until last week, the camera was able to easily acquire small birds like swallows and martins against a blue sky while using Large Zone AF. Against busier backgrounds the camera was more challenged, but that's more lack of operator skills as it is the camera's shortcomings.

I tried my 80D in identical shooting conditions using Zone AF (I switched bodies throughout my photography sessions yesterday and the day before...lighting conditions were excellent both days), and the 80D had no problems acquiring the birds against the sky in any of its Zone focus modes (although its hit rate was lower that my 7D II before the problem developed, which is to be expected).

Canon quoted $389 for the estimated repair cost (yikes!). Has anyone dealt with their repair services? How likely will they be able to repair it? $389's a lot of salad to fix a five year old camera; on the other hand, I'm not looking for an "upgrade" as there's nothing in their lineup that suits my needs. I guess it's either fix this one, buy a new 7D II, or sit tight with the 80D until 2025 or whenever Canon comes up with a suitable 7D II replacement.

Thanks.

What exactly is it that Canon is going to fix for $389?

I provided a detailed description of the problem and checked the "AF Calibration" and "Other" boxes. It seemed like an automated response based on the boxes I checked.

Tom59 Senior Member • Posts: 1,349
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

Mike-G wrote:

Tom59 wrote:

Mike-G wrote:

Over the past week my 7D Mark II has been unable to acquire small subjects (birds) while operating in any of the Zone Autofocus modes. I checked all AF settings (AI Servo on, ITR Off, cycled through all AF cases and Initial AF Pts, turned on and off Lens Drive when AF Impossible) and pre-focused the camera to a distance where the birds were flying. I'll double check tonight, but I didn't have problems acquiring a couple of aircraft in Zone AF.

Frequently I could see the bird in my viewfinder, but when I pressed the focus button, the bird disappeared. I'm not experiencing any focus problems in single point AF modes.

Am I missing anything in terms of settings? I bought the camera used about a year and a half ago and have taken tens of thousands of shots. I don't mess around with settings now that I've found a few that work, and I haven't dropped the camera (although I have been tempted to throw it into a lake a few times).

Until last week, the camera was able to easily acquire small birds like swallows and martins against a blue sky while using Large Zone AF. Against busier backgrounds the camera was more challenged, but that's more lack of operator skills as it is the camera's shortcomings.

I tried my 80D in identical shooting conditions using Zone AF (I switched bodies throughout my photography sessions yesterday and the day before...lighting conditions were excellent both days), and the 80D had no problems acquiring the birds against the sky in any of its Zone focus modes (although its hit rate was lower that my 7D II before the problem developed, which is to be expected).

Canon quoted $389 for the estimated repair cost (yikes!). Has anyone dealt with their repair services? How likely will they be able to repair it? $389's a lot of salad to fix a five year old camera; on the other hand, I'm not looking for an "upgrade" as there's nothing in their lineup that suits my needs. I guess it's either fix this one, buy a new 7D II, or sit tight with the 80D until 2025 or whenever Canon comes up with a suitable 7D II replacement.

Thanks.

What exactly is it that Canon is going to fix for $389?

I provided a detailed description of the problem and checked the "AF Calibration" and "Other" boxes. It seemed like an automated response based on the boxes I checked.

Ok. Thanks. Just wondering if it was a known issue to keep an eye out for.

Distinctly Average Senior Member • Posts: 1,120
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

Mike-G wrote:

Tom59 wrote:

Mike-G wrote:

Over the past week my 7D Mark II has been unable to acquire small subjects (birds) while operating in any of the Zone Autofocus modes. I checked all AF settings (AI Servo on, ITR Off, cycled through all AF cases and Initial AF Pts, turned on and off Lens Drive when AF Impossible) and pre-focused the camera to a distance where the birds were flying. I'll double check tonight, but I didn't have problems acquiring a couple of aircraft in Zone AF.

Frequently I could see the bird in my viewfinder, but when I pressed the focus button, the bird disappeared. I'm not experiencing any focus problems in single point AF modes.

Am I missing anything in terms of settings? I bought the camera used about a year and a half ago and have taken tens of thousands of shots. I don't mess around with settings now that I've found a few that work, and I haven't dropped the camera (although I have been tempted to throw it into a lake a few times).

Until last week, the camera was able to easily acquire small birds like swallows and martins against a blue sky while using Large Zone AF. Against busier backgrounds the camera was more challenged, but that's more lack of operator skills as it is the camera's shortcomings.

I tried my 80D in identical shooting conditions using Zone AF (I switched bodies throughout my photography sessions yesterday and the day before...lighting conditions were excellent both days), and the 80D had no problems acquiring the birds against the sky in any of its Zone focus modes (although its hit rate was lower that my 7D II before the problem developed, which is to be expected).

Canon quoted $389 for the estimated repair cost (yikes!). Has anyone dealt with their repair services? How likely will they be able to repair it? $389's a lot of salad to fix a five year old camera; on the other hand, I'm not looking for an "upgrade" as there's nothing in their lineup that suits my needs. I guess it's either fix this one, buy a new 7D II, or sit tight with the 80D until 2025 or whenever Canon comes up with a suitable 7D II replacement.

Thanks.

What exactly is it that Canon is going to fix for $389?

I provided a detailed description of the problem and checked the "AF Calibration" and "Other" boxes. It seemed like an automated response based on the boxes I checked.

Odd thing is, mine started doing the same last week. Hopefully just atmospherics or something odd. Or it could be a special chip that turns cameras to cheese then the manufacturer releases a new model.

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OP Mike-G Junior Member • Posts: 48
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

Distinctly Average wrote:

Odd thing is, mine started doing the same last week. Hopefully just atmospherics or something odd. Or it could be a special chip that turns cameras to cheese then the manufacturer releases a new model.

I was thinking the same regarding atmospheric or bad lighting conditions, but when I noted the 80D had no problems, I scratched that idea.

A few weeks ago I was at a local recreation area photographing a Bald Eagle family. A guy was there with a 90D and Tamron 150-600 G2. He was surprised that as we waited for the eagle action, I casually took a few snaps of Barn Swallows that were buzzing around the soccer field. He said he'd never even think of trying this type of shot. Straight out of camera, Large Zone AF:

If I tried that now all I'd get would be some motor stutter and maybe a little purple blur.

This one isn't a keeper, but the camera could function in more challenging conditions as well. Rough-winged Swallows on a miserable, dark morning in late May. Unfortunately they only made a couple passes by me and weren't close enough for a better shot. A very quick and lazy edit with Topaz Denoise, exposure and crop:

It might be a bit of a gamble, but I'll send it and have them look at it. I'm putting my daughter through college and need to be careful with my discretionary spending.

Distinctly Average Senior Member • Posts: 1,120
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

Mike-G wrote:

Distinctly Average wrote:

Odd thing is, mine started doing the same last week. Hopefully just atmospherics or something odd. Or it could be a special chip that turns cameras to cheese then the manufacturer releases a new model.

I was thinking the same regarding atmospheric or bad lighting conditions, but when I noted the 80D had no problems, I scratched that idea.

A few weeks ago I was at a local recreation area photographing a Bald Eagle family. A guy was there with a 90D and Tamron 100-600 G2. He was surprised that as we waited for the eagle action, I casually took a few snaps of Barn Swallows that were buzzing around the soccer field. He said he'd never even think of trying this type of shot. Straight out of camera, Large Zone AF:

If I tried that now all I'd get would be some motor stutter and maybe a little purple blur.

This one isn't a keeper, but the camera could function in more challenging conditions as well. Rough-winged Swallows on a miserable, dark morning in late May. Unfortunately they only made a couple passes by me and weren't close enough for a better shot. A very quick and lazy edit with Topaz Denoise, exposure and crop:

It might be a bit of a gamble, but I'll send it and have them look at it. I'm putting my daughter through college and need to be careful with my discretionary spending.

One thing to try. Put the camera in cleaning mode so the mirror is up. If you look at the bottom of the camera, 99 degrees to the sensor you will see the AF sensor. Give that a quick puff with an air bulb. Sometimes they can get a little dusty can confuse the AF

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Tom59 Senior Member • Posts: 1,349
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting
1

Distinctly Average wrote:

Mike-G wrote:

Tom59 wrote:

Mike-G wrote:

Over the past week my 7D Mark II has been unable to acquire small subjects (birds) while operating in any of the Zone Autofocus modes. I checked all AF settings (AI Servo on, ITR Off, cycled through all AF cases and Initial AF Pts, turned on and off Lens Drive when AF Impossible) and pre-focused the camera to a distance where the birds were flying. I'll double check tonight, but I didn't have problems acquiring a couple of aircraft in Zone AF.

Frequently I could see the bird in my viewfinder, but when I pressed the focus button, the bird disappeared. I'm not experiencing any focus problems in single point AF modes.

Am I missing anything in terms of settings? I bought the camera used about a year and a half ago and have taken tens of thousands of shots. I don't mess around with settings now that I've found a few that work, and I haven't dropped the camera (although I have been tempted to throw it into a lake a few times).

Until last week, the camera was able to easily acquire small birds like swallows and martins against a blue sky while using Large Zone AF. Against busier backgrounds the camera was more challenged, but that's more lack of operator skills as it is the camera's shortcomings.

I tried my 80D in identical shooting conditions using Zone AF (I switched bodies throughout my photography sessions yesterday and the day before...lighting conditions were excellent both days), and the 80D had no problems acquiring the birds against the sky in any of its Zone focus modes (although its hit rate was lower that my 7D II before the problem developed, which is to be expected).

Canon quoted $389 for the estimated repair cost (yikes!). Has anyone dealt with their repair services? How likely will they be able to repair it? $389's a lot of salad to fix a five year old camera; on the other hand, I'm not looking for an "upgrade" as there's nothing in their lineup that suits my needs. I guess it's either fix this one, buy a new 7D II, or sit tight with the 80D until 2025 or whenever Canon comes up with a suitable 7D II replacement.

Thanks.

What exactly is it that Canon is going to fix for $389?

I provided a detailed description of the problem and checked the "AF Calibration" and "Other" boxes. It seemed like an automated response based on the boxes I checked.

Odd thing is, mine started doing the same last week. Hopefully just atmospherics or something odd. Or it could be a special chip that turns cameras to cheese then the manufacturer releases a new model.

If it is, it at least better be a damn  good cheddar!!!  Hope not, just picked up this one used a month ago. Was hoping for a mk3 but don't see that happening. So far its been good. happy with it!

OP Mike-G Junior Member • Posts: 48
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

cdmazoff wrote:

Sound like the garbage some of use have been going through with the 90D lately. I find that going into and out of live view a few times clears this up... I don't know why.. But... try this..... it might help.

Sorry for the late response, and I appreciate the suggestion. Those temporary solutions are ok until they stop working. And for me it would happen at the most inopportune time.

I've been following the roller coaster 90D threads here and elsewhere. Lots of frustration, but you and others have gotten some nice pics from the camera.

IR1234 Senior Member • Posts: 1,816
AF Sensor dirty. n/t

No text.

 IR1234's gear list:IR1234's gear list
Canon EOS-1D Mark III Canon EOS-1Ds Canon EOS 400D Canon EOS 7D Canon EOS 550D +12 more
iho New Member • Posts: 2
Re: 7D Mark II Zone AF Troubleshooting

cdmazoff wrote:

Sound like the garbage some of use have been going through with the 90D lately. I find that going into and out of live view a few times clears this up... I don't know why.. But... try this..... it might help.

thank you so much, my 7dMKII had the same issue last week with the large zone AF or 65 AF.

i just try your solution and it work perfectly fine now.

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