FE SEL24-105 soft focus

Started 8 months ago | Discussions
SQLGuy
SQLGuy Forum Pro • Posts: 12,012
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus (or focus shift)
1

William Curtindale wrote:

This has been a very interesting and informative thread.

I was not aware of a focus shift at higher f-stops and AF-S with the FE 24-105mm f/4 G.

I generally shoot between f/4 to f/6.1 with AF-C and don't experience focus shift. Although, what I now believe after reading through this thread is that if using AF-S with a higher f-stop setting I could experience a slight focus shift (with AF-S the lens focuses wide open and closes down for the exposure).

Depends on the camera model, and the lens. I don't have the SEL24105G, but I tried with the SEL55F18Z on the A7R4, and, in Aperture Drive in AF of Standard, the lens focuses stopped down in A mode and AF-S. With Focus Priority, it focuses wide open, and then stops down. Checking focus with magnified AF, the results did not look different, nor did they in shots. The OPs scenario may still be something that's a lens or camera firmware issue. Interested to see whether anything comes of the Sony support case.

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A7R2 with SEL2470Z and a number of adapted lenses (Canon FD, Minolta AF, Canon EF, Leica, Nikon...); A7R converted to IR.

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havoc315 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,042
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus (or focus shift)
1

SQLGuy wrote:

William Curtindale wrote:

This has been a very interesting and informative thread.

I was not aware of a focus shift at higher f-stops and AF-S with the FE 24-105mm f/4 G.

I generally shoot between f/4 to f/6.1 with AF-C and don't experience focus shift. Although, what I now believe after reading through this thread is that if using AF-S with a higher f-stop setting I could experience a slight focus shift (with AF-S the lens focuses wide open and closes down for the exposure).

Depends on the camera model, and the lens. I don't have the SEL24105G, but I tried with the SEL55F18Z on the A7R4, and, in Aperture Drive in AF of Standard, the lens focuses stopped down in A mode and AF-S. With Focus Priority, it focuses wide open, and then stops down. Checking focus with magnified AF, the results did not look different, nor did they in shots. The OPs scenario may still be something that's a lens or camera firmware issue. Interested to see whether anything comes of the Sony support case.

Not all lenses suffer from focus shift. I don’t believe it’s an issue with the 55/1.8.

His battery test confirmed it’s definitely focus shift.

-- hide signature --

A7R2 with SEL2470Z and a number of adapted lenses (Canon FD, Minolta AF, Canon EF, Leica, Nikon...); A7R converted to IR.

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SQLGuy
SQLGuy Forum Pro • Posts: 12,012
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus (or focus shift)
  • havoc315 wrote:

SQLGuy wrote:

William Curtindale wrote:

This has been a very interesting and informative thread.

I was not aware of a focus shift at higher f-stops and AF-S with the FE 24-105mm f/4 G.

I generally shoot between f/4 to f/6.1 with AF-C and don't experience focus shift. Although, what I now believe after reading through this thread is that if using AF-S with a higher f-stop setting I could experience a slight focus shift (with AF-S the lens focuses wide open and closes down for the exposure).

Depends on the camera model, and the lens. I don't have the SEL24105G, but I tried with the SEL55F18Z on the A7R4, and, in Aperture Drive in AF of Standard, the lens focuses stopped down in A mode and AF-S. With Focus Priority, it focuses wide open, and then stops down. Checking focus with magnified AF, the results did not look different, nor did they in shots. The OPs scenario may still be something that's a lens or camera firmware issue. Interested to see whether anything comes of the Sony support case.

Not all lenses suffer from focus shift. I don’t believe it’s an issue with the 55/1.8.

His battery test confirmed it’s definitely focus shift.

Oh, I know it's focus shift. My point was that focusing wide open and then stopping down is not the only option and not even the default on many models.

-- hide signature --

A7R2 with SEL2470Z and a number of adapted lenses (Canon FD, Minolta AF, Canon EF, Leica, Nikon...); A7R converted to IR.

-- hide signature --

A7R2 with SEL2470Z and a number of adapted lenses (Canon FD, Minolta AF, Canon EF, Leica, Nikon...); A7R converted to IR.

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havoc315 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,042
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus (or focus shift)

SQLGuy wrote:

Oh, I know it's focus shift. My point was that focusing wide open and then stopping down is not the only option and not even the default on many models.

It's the default on the A7r3 when shooting AF-S. The A7r3 does not have the other aperture modes. The other modes premiered on the A7riv, and in firmware updates to the A9.

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HughS Regular Member • Posts: 311
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

Hi

Really interested in the app. you mentioned above which reveals the focus point in an image. Could you tell me what it's called ?

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JERumball
OP JERumball Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

It’s called a7Info

https://www.soens.de/a7info.html

William Curtindale
William Curtindale Veteran Member • Posts: 9,532
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

I have tremendously enjoyed reading the comments from all regarding about the FE 24-105mm f/4 G and "Focus Shift" when using "AF-S" (I have learned something about my lens). Although, I usually use AF-C and have not experienced focus shift.

Although, this thread made me start to think about other ways to deal with the concern (focus shift or soft focus).  I have three other lenses that could Handley provide a solution (with 105mm at f/8).

FE 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6

SAL 70-200mm f/2.8 G SSM + LA-EA3

Sal 70-400mm f/4.5-5.6 G SSM + LA-EA3

In the next few days I plan to do a test with each lens set at 105mm, f/8 and AF-S and AF-C.  I will be looking to see if I can detect focus shift and compare sharpness (will be compared to my FE 24-105mm f/4 G).  Honestly, I have been extremely happy with my three older lenses and expect sharpness to be as good as I am able to can detect.  I have also been extremely happy with the focus speed and accuracy of my SSM lens with LA-EA3.

So, in the end with my other lenses I may find some Focus Shift using AF-S.

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Michael W00d Senior Member • Posts: 1,062
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

Thanks for the information. However I have encountered problems trying to install the program on Windows 10.

After download, a message appears: 'A7InfoSetup isn't commonly downloaded. Make sure you trust A7InfoSetup before you open it.'

The downloaded is named 'Unconfirmed 123456.crdownload'. (The actual number changes every download.)

Unsurprisingly my PC has no app to process a *.crdownload file. Grateful if you could explain how to proceed.

Many thanks

Michael

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jhunna Senior Member • Posts: 2,404
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

Michael W00d wrote:

Thanks for the information. However I have encountered problems trying to install the program on Windows 10.

After download, a message appears: 'A7InfoSetup isn't commonly downloaded. Make sure you trust A7InfoSetup before you open it.'

The downloaded is named 'Unconfirmed 123456.crdownload'. (The actual number changes every download.)

Unsurprisingly my PC has no app to process a *.crdownload file. Grateful if you could explain how to proceed.

Many thanks

Michael

*.crdownload is a partial file, it wont work.

download the file again and let it finish.

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havoc315 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,042
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

William Curtindale wrote:

I have tremendously enjoyed reading the comments from all regarding about the FE 24-105mm f/4 G and "Focus Shift" when using "AF-S" (I have learned something about my lens). Although, I usually use AF-C and have not experienced focus shift.

Although, this thread made me start to think about other ways to deal with the concern (focus shift or soft focus). I have three other lenses that could Handley provide a solution (with 105mm at f/8).

FE 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6

SAL 70-200mm f/2.8 G SSM + LA-EA3

Sal 70-400mm f/4.5-5.6 G SSM + LA-EA3

In the next few days I plan to do a test with each lens set at 105mm, f/8 and AF-S and AF-C. I will be looking to see if I can detect focus shift and compare sharpness (will be compared to my FE 24-105mm f/4 G). Honestly, I have been extremely happy with my three older lenses and expect sharpness to be as good as I am able to can detect. I have also been extremely happy with the focus speed and accuracy of my SSM lens with LA-EA3.

So, in the end with my other lenses I may find some Focus Shift using AF-S.

Focus shift is caused by the change in aperture. The less the aperture is changing, the less one would expect to see this type of focus shift.

In other words -- I'd be surprised to see much focus shift in your 70-300 and 70-400, where you're basically stopping down just slightly more than one stop. You very well may see it with your 70-200, where you're stopping down three stops.

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Michael W00d Senior Member • Posts: 1,062
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus
1

jhunna wrote:

*.crdownload is a partial file, it wont work.

download the file again and let it finish.

Thanks jhunna. Searching around the system I discovered it was showing as 'still downloading' even though it seemed to have completed the 52 MB download. So it was being blocked despite having Edge's blocking option turned off. Clicking the MS Edge options I found I had to confirm my agreement to download i.e. release the block. That did it and now it's running.

Many thanks

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dragoo
dragoo Junior Member • Posts: 37
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

JERumball wrote:

Thank you for posting this link. I verified that my lens is not a part of this recall.

EyeAF was enabled at the time.

Thanks to the other person who referred me to the A7Info application. It reveals that for this image, the focus point was indeed on his left cheek/eye area.

Another person suggested that the player moved during the exposure... he's standing still and its unlikely that he moved even slightly. Besides, the strobes would have frozen him in place due to their brief duration. Next time I will try high speed sync to rule this out absolutely.

By the way, I have many images from this session with the same problem... it's not just one image I'm having the problem with.

Thanks to everyone who commented thus far... I really appreciate it.

let me chime in... 10 days ago I got this lens. It was very sharp except when doing close-ups at long focal distances. Anything between 38 cm (min. focusing distance) and approximately 1 m appears as not focused properly (and I did extensive testing). Sent it to the local service center, apparently nothing seemed wrong. They did suggest to send it out to the main European service center as the local service didn't have the "high-end equipment", which I accepted. Now I'm waiting...

I'll post some pics if I find them.

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dragoo
dragoo Junior Member • Posts: 37
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

A few of the good ones... (shot handheld, stabilisation on)

And the ugly ones:

Both shot from the distance of about 45 cm. Spot autofocus on the face, stabilisation off (camera on the table, no vibrations), 2-sec timer... tried manual, DMF, various apertures...

It shouldn't be so soft, or?

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Bassman2003 Senior Member • Posts: 1,750
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus
1

Please let us know how your shoots went this weekend.  I have always been a focus and recompose shooter using AF-ON with a single point over the subject's eye and with solid results.  The new eye AF approach is scary for the very reason of your thread - sounds great until you toast an entire shoot relying upon technology that might not be set correctly...

I hope you have it sorted out.  Luckily, the parents will most likely not be pixel peeping and your image/lighting is very nice.  So you might have dodged a bullet while learning the camera a bit more.

pollup Senior Member • Posts: 1,380
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

JERumball wrote:

Thank you for posting this link. I verified that my lens is not a part of this recall.

EyeAF was enabled at the time.

Thanks to the other person who referred me to the A7Info application. It reveals that for this image, the focus point was indeed on his left cheek/eye area.

Your mistake is to use AF-S in combination with Eye AF, it's not going to work if the subject moves a bit (and everyone moves a bit).
Use AF-C + single shot if you still want the highest possible IQ.

Another person suggested that the player moved during the exposure... he's standing still and its unlikely that he moved even slightly.

Everyone moves, and if you want critical focus (which in your case you do), then every single mm counts. Now if you resize the photo to facebook sizes, it will look fine, but that's not the point here.

Besides, the strobes would have frozen him in place due to their brief duration. Next time I will try high speed sync to rule this out absolutely.

It just means that when you take the shot, the motion is frozen. But with AF-S, it's possible that the subject has already moved between the focus acquisition and you taking the shot. That's the whole issue. It's not about motion blur, it's about the eye no longer being on the plane of focus.

By the way, I have many images from this session with the same problem... it's not just one image I'm having the problem with.

Well that's to be expected. I also lost a ton of shots when using the wrong settings.

Thanks to everyone who commented thus far... I really appreciate it.

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Rluizsm Regular Member • Posts: 260
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

I was just curious: what setting have you checked for "Priority-Set in AF-S"?

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HughS Regular Member • Posts: 311
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

JERumball wrote:

It’s called a7Info

https://www.soens.de/a7info.html

Thank you very much for the info. :^)

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JERumball
OP JERumball Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus
3

So I finally got thru to and spoke to someone at Sony Support Canada.  They reviewed some sample images I sent them and asked that I send them the camera and lens to be calibrated.  I should have them back 7-10 business days after they receive them.  I will update you afterwards.

Fingers crossed for a satisfactory resolution.

Thanks for all your input.

Happy holidays.

John

Bassman2003 Senior Member • Posts: 1,750
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

Thanks for the update and please report back.  Hope it gets better after calibration.

JERumball
OP JERumball Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: FE SEL24-105 soft focus

Just an update for you all… after having the camera and lens in to Sony service (Gentec International here in Canada actually) for more than a month, they found nothing wrong with the lens/camera.

Wonderful.

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