R5: Whats your focus setup?

Started Jan 16, 2021 | Discussions
nurf Regular Member • Posts: 299
R5: Whats your focus setup?

I always used to have the shutter button free of the focus function, on the R5 I'm not so sure.

Currently I have,

Shutter: continues auto tracking with manual starting point (face and eye tracking active)

Af-On: continues auto tracking with automatic starting point (face and eye tracking active)

Don't know what to do with the * button yet:
- toggle for the eye detection?
- scrolling through focus options (not really sure I need them all, maybe I can just remove all except a real spot and the auto tracking with manual starting point, and have it as a switch between those two)

But I'm not really satisfied with the options I can assign to the buttons. I used to have a real one-shot (even though the camera was in continues mode) spot on the * button, that's not available on the R5.

Also I would like it to be the other way around, have the fully automatic AF on the shutter, and if that does something dumb, have the manual starting point on AF on.

I could free the shutter button completely, have full auto tracking on AF-On, manual starting point tracking on * and switch to a spot with "focus select". But those two buttons are to close together, that wouldn't work well in protective gear.

What do you do?

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R2D2 Forum Pro • Posts: 25,421
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?

nurf wrote:

I used to have a real one-shot (even though the camera was in continues mode) spot on the * button, that's not available on the R5.

You can set it up that way if you want.  Press "Info" when you're assigning a function to the button.

Also I would like it to be the other way around, have the fully automatic AF on the shutter, and if that does something dumb, have the manual starting point on AF on.

You can do this too.

R2

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OP nurf Regular Member • Posts: 299
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?

No I can't shutter button has only the "AF Start" option, the fully automatic one is called "AF eye tracking" not available on the shutter button.

And where do you see the option for * to be a "one shot spot AF", I only see a toggle between servo and one-shot, that's not what I mean.

On my previous cam it was not a toggle, it just did the spot single shot AF no matter what the general settings and without changing them.

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arbitrage Contributing Member • Posts: 585
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?

nurf wrote:

I always used to have the shutter button free of the focus function, on the R5 I'm not so sure.

Currently I have,

Shutter: continues auto tracking with manual starting point (face and eye tracking active)

Af-On: continues auto tracking with automatic starting point (face and eye tracking active)

Don't know what to do with the * button yet:
- toggle for the eye detection?
- scrolling through focus options (not really sure I need them all, maybe I can just remove all except a real spot and the auto tracking with manual starting point, and have it as a switch between those two)

But I'm not really satisfied with the options I can assign to the buttons. I used to have a real one-shot (even though the camera was in continues mode) spot on the * button, that's not available on the R5.

Also I would like it to be the other way around, have the fully automatic AF on the shutter, and if that does something dumb, have the manual starting point on AF on.

I could free the shutter button completely, have full auto tracking on AF-On, manual starting point tracking on * and switch to a spot with "focus select". But those two buttons are to close together, that wouldn't work well in protective gear.

What do you do?

I started to use shutter button focus again with MILCs...starting with my A9.  I continue to use it on the R5.  With all these full frame tracking modes, BBF isn't needed as often (if at all) and when I'm quickly reacting to a fast BIF I prefer just one button to deal with.

You can have a real One-Shot, Spot AF.  Unless you meant that the Spot AF isn't small enough.  Can't fix that.  But if you assign a button (lets say *) to "AF Metering Start" and then hit INFO to enter Detail Set you can change that button to One Shot and Spot AF point.

The way I've settled on AF modes is as follows:

Shutter button is Face/Subject Tracking with Auto selected Point.  This is my main AF mode selected under AF1 Menu.  Eye AF enabled for Animals.  Doing it this way has one very specific benefit that doesn't happen in any other configuration.  (Although you don't have to use it on shutter button, you can use it on AF-ON or *).

My AF-ON button is set via the AF/Metering Start: Detail Set to be Zone AF.  My * button is set via AF/Metering Start: Detail Set to be Spot AF.

The benefit I mention is that if you have Face/Tracking as your main AF mode set in AF1 menu and you have Auto set in AF5 menu, then, and only then, do you get to "see" what the camera is thinking/processing ahead of engaging AF.  You will see white boxes form when the camera detects a subject, face or eye.  This is showing you when the camera has detected the subject.  I find this very valuable as I don't engage AF when it hasn't found the subject which often leaves to focus on some other object in the frame like a branch.  If the system isn't detecting the subject I then use either my Zone back button (when I have a clear surroundings) or my Spot AF back button when bird is in complicated surroundings.  Most times if I use one of those to get the subject in focus, then the Auto Subject Tracking figures things out, the white boxes show up, I engage AF from the shutter button and I can fire away with recomposing as it tracks the head or eye of the bird.

The one downside to that method is when you use the back buttons to switch to the alternative modes, you can't move them around because you are holding in the back button and can't also operate the joystick.  So they are stuck in the centre.  I don't really find this to be an issue but it could be in some situations.

You mention thinking about having Auto on shutter and then user selected point on AF-ON.  R2D2 above says you can.  But I'm fairly certain you can't do that.  The reason is that the only way I know to have a button for both Auto start point and User Selected Start point is to have User Selected Start Point selected in AF5 menu.  Then you use the Custom Button for Eye Detection which ignores AF5 setting and always does Auto.  But there is no way to assign Eye Detection to the shutter button.  So unless R2D2 can explain the way, I don't see there being one.

But as I mentioned you can have AF-ON be Spot AF, use that to narrow down and then switch back to Auto Subject Tracking on your shutter button as I do it.

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arbitrage Contributing Member • Posts: 585
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?

R2D2 wrote:

Also I would like it to be the other way around, have the fully automatic AF on the shutter, and if that does something dumb, have the manual starting point on AF on.

You can do this too.

R2

Can you explain how?

The only way I've found to have a button both for Auto Selected Face/Tracking and User Selected (Initial AF pt set) for Face Tracking is to have AF5:Initial Servo Point set to Initial AF pt set for..(ie user selected starting point) and then use the Custom Button function "Eye Detection" (Picture of an Eye with letters AF) on one of the back buttons.  "Eye Detection" ignores what is set in AF5: Initial Servo Point and always does Auto start point.  There is no way to put "Eye Detection" onto the shutter button (the shutter button is very restricted to what can be programmed to it).  Therefore I can't think of a way to do what you say is possible.

Please let me know if you have figured out a way.

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OP nurf Regular Member • Posts: 299
Ok new setup.

Ok found the option for a direct spot AF on the backbutton (there are more options on the normal "AF Metering Start" function for back buttons). But that lacks the option for moving the AF point if its turned off on the main function.

Ok different setup now:

Shutter Button: normal Af start option, have a normal point AF selected. Shutter button is a normal dumb spot AF now that I can move, no tracking there. And I can just move it with the joystick.

Initial start focus point for full auto mode is disabled, its not needed.

AF on button: set for full auto eye / face tracking, that selects on its own what person to focus.
BUT: if I have the shutter button pressed with my manual controlled AF box, keep it pressed and additionally press the AF on, it takes over where my AF box is and starts tracking whatever was there (even if its not a face).

Thanks an interesting option.

"*" button switches through AF options, having the manual focus start option off, allows to quickly set the shutter button to full auto also, for selfies (or fully auto AF remoteshooting that can only trigger the shutter AF function) or if I give the cam to other people.

Having it in the spot mode (whatever size) gives me full manual focus on the shutter without tracking and a tracking start point when adding the backbutton.

The outer right focus select button I set for full brightness, once your out in the sun it might be to late to find that option on a dim screen.

Thanks @arbitrage for pointing out some of the more hidden features, like that back button AF can takeover a starting point from shutter button AF. And additional options on function depending on which button they are assigned to.

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OP nurf Regular Member • Posts: 299
Re: Ok new setup.

Ok one issue with this setup is that I have to keep pressing AF on otherwise the spot will steal focus when taking the shot, that needs some getting used too.

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David Yule Regular Member • Posts: 306
Re: Ok new setup.

I like your option (copy and paste below), is there a way to do this for one shot?

What I'd like to do is initially restrict auto eye / face tracking to the point, expanded area or zone I've chosen.

Shutter Button: normal Af start option, have a normal point AF selected. Shutter button is a normal dumb spot AF now that I can move, no tracking there. And I can just move it with the joystick.

Initial start focus point for full auto mode is disabled, its not needed.

AF on button: set for full auto eye / face tracking, that selects on its own what person to focus.
BUT: if I have the shutter button pressed with my manual controlled AF box, keep it pressed and additionally press the AF on, it takes over where my AF box is and starts tracking whatever was there (even if its not a face).

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David

R2D2 Forum Pro • Posts: 25,421
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?

R2D2 wrote:

nurf wrote:

I used to have a real one-shot (even though the camera was in continues mode) spot on the * button, that's not available on the R5.

You can set it up that way if you want. Press "Info" when you're assigning a function to the button.

Set your shutter button up whichever way you want. The settings in the "AF" menu determine how Shutter AF will behave.

Then go into the MENU and scroll to C.Fn3 (Customize Buttons). Scroll down to the " * " button, press "SET."

Scroll over to the "Metering and AF start" option, and don't press "SET." Instead press the "INFO" button.

Scroll to "AF operation" and press "SET." Scroll to the "ONE SHOT" option and press "SET."

Scroll to "AF method" and press "SET." Scroll to the "Spot AF" option and press "SET."

Also I would like it to be the other way around, have the fully automatic AF on the shutter, and if that does something dumb, have the manual starting point on AF on.

You can do this too.

Set your shutter button up whichever way you want. The settings in the "AF" menu determine how Shutter AF will behave.

Then go into the MENU and scroll to C.Fn3 (Customize Buttons). Scroll down to the "AF-ON" button, press "SET."

Scroll over to the "Metering and AF start" option, and don't press "SET." Instead press the "INFO" button.

Scroll to "AF operation" and press "SET." Scroll to the "SERVO" option and press "SET."

Scroll to "AF method" and press "SET." Scroll to the "1-point AF" (or whichever) option and press "SET."

Scroll to "Servo AF characteristics" and press "SET." Scroll to the Case Number you want to use and press "SET." Note: The Case options (customizations) can be set in the "AF3" menu, and are global.

If this is not what you desire, let me know. Actually you can play with the settings as much as you'd like. 

R2

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R2D2 Forum Pro • Posts: 25,421
Re: Ok new setup.

nurf wrote:

Ok one issue with this setup is that I have to keep pressing AF on otherwise the spot will steal focus when taking the shot, that needs some getting used too.

That's part of the versatility of this setup. The back button(s') AF will override the shutter button AF as long as you keep the back button(s) depressed. Let up and you get the shutter button AF. You can do this back and forth very quickly, ad infinitum. You develop a feel for when each is needed, and it's quite versatile.

I've experimented with having Eye Detect AF on the shutter button, and Spot AF on the AF-ON button (Assist Points AF on the " * " button, and full auto Eye AF on the "AF point button"). My AF settings are still a work in progress though. There's a lot to it, and experimenting helps a lot.

R2

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OP nurf Regular Member • Posts: 299
Re: Ok new setup.

Global settings for one-shot makes both one-shoot, but then there is really no point in giving the AF point from shutter to AF on because it wont switch to a tracking AF anymore.

You can setup the back button with overriding the global settings for one-shot / servo. But the shutter button is limited to always apply the global settings.

And the problem with the back-buttons is, if you don't have an AF box visible on the shutter button, you can't really move it and its static on the back-button.

It would be great if the shutter button had the same options range as the back-buttons do.

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OP nurf Regular Member • Posts: 299
Re: Ok new setup.

And I even get my eye / face switching with the joystick if I switch to full auto AF with the * for the shutter button.

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definedphotography Regular Member • Posts: 129
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?

I shot a portrait with my R5 for the first time yesterday.

I have the shutter button set to the "standard" metering & AF start.

AF-On to the same as shutter button - ie back button focus

* set to Eye Detection

I didn't need to press a single button during the shoot to change AF settings. The AF was simply amazing - even when the models were facing away.

I don't think I got a single out of focus shot (for a change).

R2D2 Forum Pro • Posts: 25,421
Re: Ok new setup.

nurf wrote:

Global settings for one-shot makes both one-shoot, but then there is really no point in giving the AF point from shutter to AF on because it wont switch to a tracking AF anymore.

You can setup the back button with overriding the global settings for one-shot / servo. But the shutter button is limited to always apply the global settings.

And the problem with the back-buttons is, if you don't have an AF box visible on the shutter button, you can't really move it and its static on the back-button.

It would be great if the shutter button had the same options range as the back-buttons do.

+1 There’s still a ton of tweaking that Canon could do to the AF IMHO.

(ie: I’d like that 3rd BBAF button (AF Selection button) to be fully customizable too)

R2

ps. Did any of my instructions above help?

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pekr
pekr Contributing Member • Posts: 754
My focus settings after 3 days ...

First, sorry if it is not OK to bump old topics, did not want to start yet another thread.

The objective

We use our cameras mainly for wedding and family / portrait shoots, both outdoors and in the studio. What we wish for is the eye tracking, but also a single point for details.

Face tracking AF - our main AF mode

Naturally our main AF mode is Servo, Face tracking / Peoply / Eye on. What we really dislike about the mode is, that initially, you can't see, where the AF is going to aim, unless there is something, which attracts the AF, being if a face, or some object. Both me and my wife find it highly confusing!

Face tracking AF - Initial Servo pt. for AF

So - we did change AF / 5 / Initial Servo AF pt. from Auto to the middle option. That way, you always have AF point on your screen and can point the camera to track from that point. Useful for tracking some objects too, not necessarily only the faces. Without this setting, you can't simply override the face priorty and can't effectively point the camera to track something else.

Just move the camera to point your AF point onto someone's face and recompose. Yes, it's old good focus & recompose, just on steroids, as it keeps tracking the face / eye. Perfect, this one!

Face tracking AF - Servo vs One shot

Changing the initial point for Servo AF, has one downside though - you can't see this nice box on the detected faces <[ ]> anymore in Servo mode, only in One shot mode, so you can't use your joystick to change eyes eventually.

But - on the other hand, we did not find it being the fastest method anyway - it takes few clicks to jump onto some's other face, so not the fastest.

Limiting the AF methods - direct change assigned to the button

We have limited the focus methods to just two - Face tracking and a Single point. To quickly change, we have reassigned the AF point button to a direct change of the modes at its press.

Single point AF - a little enhancement trick

Single point is useful for situations, when you really need to point at something and keep it focused. E.g. hand of the bride, during giving a hug. And then you would like to get it back to an Eye ASAP.

There is one trick - assign one of buttons to the Eye AF! Found it in one of the videos and was really excited. Pointing at something, boom, focus and track the Eye just instantly. Perfect!

Single point AF - why Servo mode sucks!

What I really dislike abou the Servo mode in a Single point AF, is that Servo does not track the object / subject, it is just a continuous focusing in under the AF point itself. When you move your camera, it simple refocuses.

This is a completly reverse mode to the Face tracking AF and I hate it. Because of that, we have assigned the Servo / Single shot operation to the * button.

Scene simulation

We would probably have it turned on by default, but as we shoot in a studio (ISO 100, x-sync time), we would get almost completly dark view. So - we have assigned it to the DOF simulation button.

I can reach it with my pinky, but my wife has to use her other hand. Becaues of that, we have temporarily set image review to 2 secs in the viewfinder, but I am not sure we will like it long term.

Lens ring

We have set it to exposure compensation, but not sure we will (or not) turn it off. What I don't undestand is, why Canon changed the order for the 70-200 / f 2.8, whereas for f.4 it is a complete reverse order?! So far, the focusing on 70-200 / f 2.8 is a bit distant, but hopefully it is just some getting used to.

Smooth Viewfinder

Switching between the 2 modes, I am either blind, or can't see that much of a difference myself.

FV mode

... not respecting the shutter speed limit and not allowing the wheel controls normal usage, is mostly useless for us.

We still need to investigate more settings, as e.g. Speedlite flash (using Profoto A1) and we have to yet get ourselves into the video.

Best regards,

/Petr

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PNad
PNad Contributing Member • Posts: 623
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?

I guess theres no way to instantly switch between initial servo af pt auto and spot with a single button?  Because that would be perfection.

pekr
pekr Contributing Member • Posts: 754
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?

PNad wrote:

I guess theres no way to instantly switch between initial servo af pt auto and spot with a single button? Because that would be perfection.

Not sure I understand, but - you can instantly switch between the focusing modes. You just have to assign it to a button. We have just two modes enabled - tracking and Single point AF. You can have Spot allowed too, but then it will cycle between 3 modes, as you can't disable 1-point AF.

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PNad
PNad Contributing Member • Posts: 623
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?

pekr wrote:

PNad wrote:

I guess theres no way to instantly switch between initial servo af pt auto and spot with a single button? Because that would be perfection.

Not sure I understand, but - you can instantly switch between the focusing modes. You just have to assign it to a button. We have just two modes enabled - tracking and Single point AF. You can have Spot allowed too, but then it will cycle between 3 modes, as you can't disable 1-point AF.

Spot/single point won’t track. The initial servo af pt to auto will let the camera choose whatever and track, and when set to spot, it will track whatever is on the spot. You cannot switch between the two on the fly.

Initial servo af pt isn’t an af mode but a menu setting only.

OP nurf Regular Member • Posts: 299
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?
1

You can use it, if you keep your spot pressed with the shutter button and additionally press the backbutton facedetect it will take over from this point. If you don't keep the shutter pressed it will look for its own starting point.

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pekr
pekr Contributing Member • Posts: 754
Re: R5: Whats your focus setup?

PNad wrote:

pekr wrote:

PNad wrote:

I guess theres no way to instantly switch between initial servo af pt auto and spot with a single button? Because that would be perfection.

Not sure I understand, but - you can instantly switch between the focusing modes. You just have to assign it to a button. We have just two modes enabled - tracking and Single point AF. You can have Spot allowed too, but then it will cycle between 3 modes, as you can't disable 1-point AF.

Spot/single point won’t track.

In this mode, we just press an assigned button starting Eye AF and it will jump to closest eye in the scene. It's not perfect, but just handy in scenarios, when you need to use spot / single point and suddenly change to face tracking. You can help the system by moving the camera, basically making a focus & recompose.

The initial servo af pt to auto will let the camera choose whatever and track,

... and hence is mostly useless .....

and when set to spot, it will track whatever is on the spot.

... as expected ....

You cannot switch between the two on the fly.

I am still not sure what you want. You can switch between the AF methods directly, by using some dedicated button, no?

Initial servo af pt isn’t an af mode but a menu setting only.

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