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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

5D MkII Sharpness Issues?
Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
| | | Posted: 8:38 PM on 05.26.10
->> Anyone experience any 5D Mk II sharpness issues?

It was OK since it arrived in my hands in late January and in the past week it has been having sharpness issues. It does not appear to be a focusing issue, but a sharpness issue. The problem first appeared the other day with my 16-35f2.8, now I was shooting today with the 70-200f2.8 and Sigma 120-300f2.8 and both of those lenses, which I know to be sharp, are showing up with soft images on the 5D Mk II.

They are sharp with the 5D and 20D ... and I know the 70-200f2.8 was fine with the 5D Mk II about 4 or 5 days ago when I last used the combo.

I have not seen any recent posts on this anywhere.
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David Harpe, Photographer
Denver | CO | USA | Posted: 9:34 PM on 05.26.10
->> Did your noise reduction or sharpness settings in the camera get changed by accident?
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
| | | Posted: 9:52 PM on 05.26.10
->> David,

I don't think so, I hadn't touched my settings at all in the past week. I set the camera up in January and never looked at the custom functions again.



Gene Blevins just sent me a link to the latest firmware. I am going to install that in the morning and then test it out with a few lenses...if that doesn't fix it, I'll redo my custom functions and cross my fingers.
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David Harpe, Photographer
Denver | CO | USA | Posted: 11:40 PM on 05.26.10
->> Only other thing I can think of is if your lens mount shifted. Unmount the lens and look at the metal ring on the camera body from the side. Make sure it's still even all the way around. Maybe your body took a hard hit somewhere?
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
| | | Posted: 12:26 AM on 05.27.10
->> David,

I thought of that first and checked the lens mount, it is fine. The lens is not back focusing, or front focusing, its just not producing crisp images.

I never travel with a lens attached to a body, and my body was packed safely in my Gura Gear Kiboko Bag from the time I put it away Monday evening when I got back from Paris and when I pulled it out to shoot it again back home.

No bumps, bangs or whacks.

Its almost like a software issue, or a haze over the sensor, which I have now cleaned ... and it was clean.

I'll check the sharpness settings in the morning. Thanks for that suggestion.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 2:56 AM on 05.27.10
->> sharpest camera I've ever seen. must, has to be OE. 8)
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Tom Theobald, Photographer
Descanso | CA | USA | Posted: 6:09 AM on 05.27.10
->> Well, have to agree with Steven... When I owned the camera, I started to think same same re it's sharpness (one reason I sold mine last fall). A typical thought was, "Wasn't my 5DMK1 sharper than this(5DMKII)?"
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
| | | Posted: 8:01 AM on 05.27.10
->> Chuck,

I'm not blind yet ... and I had considered WWCLD :0)
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Darren Whitley, Photographer
Northwest Missouri | MO | USA | Posted: 9:55 AM on 05.27.10
->> My version of the 5D Mark II; when it's focused, it's sharp.

The thing I've noticed is that it's becoming more difficult to detect if something is truly out of focus because the resolution exceeds the LCD monitors we view the photos on. Often, I have to zoom in to check sharpness in Photo Mechanic before deleting a file.
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
| | | Posted: 12:15 PM on 05.27.10
->> Darren,

My sharpness issue appears in PhotoMechanic/Aperture/Photoshop. I don't rely on the LCD for that verification. When sizing the images at 10x15 300dpi I needed to do some significant unsharp mask ... again, not a back focus or front focus issue, just kind of a 'not sharp issue'

Images from my 5D & 20D with the same lenses look dead sharp.
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Randy Vanderveen, Photographer
Grande Prairie | AB | Canada | Posted: 12:42 PM on 05.27.10
->> Steven< I have the same issue. Once you add an unsharp mask they look okay but before that is done it there is a problem with sharpness. Randy
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Tim Snow, Photographer
Montreal | Qc | Canada | Posted: 1:00 PM on 05.27.10
->> I have to agree with Steven on this one; my 5dMkII was always tack sharp until I upgraded to the latest firmware. This past weekend, I photographed a wedding using my 70-200 alternating on the 5dMkII and 1dMkIII and the shots from the 5dMkII seemed to be soft compared to what I am used to. My other glass seemed fine. Anyone else experiencing this on the 5DMkII with the latest firmware?
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Christian del Rosario, Photographer
San Jose | CA | USA | Posted: 4:20 PM on 05.27.10
->> Could it be possible the microadjustment settings got lost or altered with a fw upgrade? Maybe it's worth recalibrating the lenses to the body.
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Aleksi Lepisto, Photographer
Sacramento | CA | United States | Posted: 6:58 AM on 05.28.10
->> I was going to recommend you try your AF adjustment.

The D3 I was using with the 200-400 for baseball just recently got VERY off suddenly and I had to make some adjustments via the menus. Once corrected, they were sharp.

Keep in mind, each lens and body have a variable acceptance rate at the factory, and can sometimes fall out of calibration unless serviced once a year or so. Anyway, if you have an acceptable range of say, plus or minus 5 on a lens, and plus or minus 3 on a body, it's possible you could be at plus or minus 8, or unacceptable and malfunctioning, simply by combining those two products together.

What is sharp on one camera is not going to be guaranteed to be sharp on another - and hence, AF fine tune solves a lot of issues.
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Al Goldis, Photographer
East Lansing | MI | USA | Posted: 3:51 PM on 05.28.10
->> I'm not a camera hardware expert (but I play one in community theater productions?? :-). However, if you're sure it's not a focus problem then I have a WAG theory. Maybe the baggage monkeys from your last flight did a number on it. A hard drop or jar, which doesn't show any external damage since it was packed well, but was enough to knock something out of whack internally, like the AA filter over the sensor or even the whole mirror box.
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
| | | Posted: 8:18 PM on 05.28.10
->> Al

Good theory, except my gear was very limited and in my carry on during my last flight on Monday as I had to shoot images during the flight (I have not checked a bag in probably a year).

I plan to test my setting and change my firmware this weekend. I have until Wednesday to find the problem when I am off to London for the day and need the 5D MkII's video capabilities ... otherwise it's video from my G11
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
| | | Posted: 8:26 AM on 05.29.10
->> Well ... I cleared and reset all my settings & custom functions and installed a different Firmware and my issue appears to have corrected its self ... at least with the 28-70f2.8L.

I plan on taking five lenses outside later and shooting the same subject with each lens to test out later. Hopefully the problem is gone.

Its days like this (and the past few days) where I really missing my bag full of Nikkor Ai & Ai-S glass coupled with my Nikon FA and F3. Luckily I have my Nikon bodies and Ai AI-S glass in my office ... maybe I'll just go buy a brick of HP 5+ and call it a day.
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Christian del Rosario, Photographer
San Jose | CA | USA | Posted: 2:30 PM on 05.31.10
->> Ok, from what you describe, It does sound like the microadjustment settings went out of whack. Try and recalibrate the lenses to the body. There are some tips here:

http://is.gd/cxc6z

Keep in mind the microadjust feature was added per request of photographers to fine tune for different tolerences of each lens/body combo. It's a very useful feature. Once dialed, It shouldn't change on it's own. But maybe a fw update tweaked them by accident (or defaulted the previous settings if set). Hopefully you'll be able to get things back to normal.
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
| | | Posted: 3:54 PM on 05.31.10
->> The problem appears to have been corrected by adjusting the high ISO noise settings. Quite a few of my settings appear to have been reset when I updated my Firmware.

Thanks folks!
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Thread Title: 5D MkII Sharpness Issues?
Thread Started By: Steven E. Frischling
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