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Thread: 7D AI Servo Setup For Birds in Flight

  1. #1
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Richard

    7D AI Servo Setup For Birds in Flight

    There was recently a query on BIF photography but, I cannot find the thread or I would have used this posting as an answer to the query.

    Here is link to an excellent website on using the 7D for BIF photography and IMO a lot of this info would pertain to using AF in other venues. A very interesting statement from this site is that, "The default settings serve pretty well for most shooting; be warned that optimizing the camera for one circumstance may be detrimental to another." Perhaps this might be the problem some photographers are experiencing in using the 7D.

    http://www.garyluhm.net/bio/tips_0310.html

    This site explains the 7D focus functions in greater detail than does the Canon User's Manual which, IMO, sort of skims over the very important auto focus criteria.

  2. #2
    koolkat's Avatar
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    Mike Goodwin

    Re: 7D AI Servo Setup For Birds in Flight

    I'm currently reading David Busch's book 7D and think he covers some of these AF questions with good information. Reading this URL page gives some insight and only with some solid experimenting will you find what works best for your shots. Today i paired a 70x200 F2.8 (ver 1) with my 7D and it's true about the quality of this lens, very heavy but nice quick focus & picture quality. Rented this lens to see if I really want to get the version 2, yep I do !

  3. #3
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: 7D AI Servo Setup For Birds in Flight

    Koolcat...

    The 70-200mm f/2.8 (non-IS) lens is an excellent lens but, I would recommend getting a lens of this focal length with IS capability. You will not use IS in all of your shooting but, when you need it, you really need it! I shoot with the 70-200mm f/4L IS lens and can hand hold that lens in lower light levels despite the fact that it is a stop slower.

    Much is said about IS not stopping image motion, however the extra one stop will often not be enough to stop image motion either AND... I can hand hold the 70-200mm f/4L IS in lower light levels than I could hand hold a non IS version of the f/2.8L. As an example, I regularly shoot my 70-200mm f/4L IS lens at 1/60 second using f/4. I can be 100% sure of a sharp image at that shutter speed. Occasionally, I will shoot at 1/30 second and, although my keeper rate is not at 100%, it is still respectable. The equivalent shutter speeds at f/2.8 would be 1/125 and 1/60 second. I could not hand hold at 1/125 second and expect 100% sharp images and I could not hand hold at 1/60 second and get any sharp images. Of course, if you use a tripod, that negates the need for IS but it also recuces your mobility.

    Photographers also claim that IS is no good for sports. I disageee! If you are shooting in lower light levels it allows an overall sharp image. If your subject is moving, the blur will often represent movment. Using IS in Mode-2 will allow panning. Additionally, you can often shoot at peak of action or with the action approaching or going away from you which will allow a slower shutter speed. There are also times when sports images are not just of fast moving subjects. A Rugby scrum or a scramble for a lost ball in American football.

    BTW: I chose the f/4L IS instead of one of its f/2.8L cousins because of the size and weight of the lens. I carry my 70-200mm f/4L IS along with a 17-55mm f/2.8 IS lens on a pair of cameras. I can carry the f/4L IS and the second camera at the weight of the f/2.8L alone. I travel everywhere with my two lenses...

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