question about Canon focus points on viewfinder

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Mike Eisenstadt, Jan 14, 2010.

  1. Hi,

    I have been doing art documentation in 35mm slide film and I want to
    upgrade to digital AS INEXPENSIVELY AS POSSIBLE. I already own a Canon
    EOS 50mm macro lens which would argue for getting a Canon 10D or the
    like. But art photography really requires having a grid in the
    viewfinder to keep from keystoning rectangular paintings. The Nikon
    D70s has the option of enabling an on-demand grid in the viewfinder,
    although I could not find this option in the manual for the Nikon D40
    or D60. The Canon 10D manual does not seem to offer on-demand gridding
    the viewfinder, however it describes an option of illuminating the 7
    automatic focusing points in the viewfinder. Their arrangement is
    similar to a cross-hair grid, according to the illustration in the
    manual.

    I am writing to ask Canon owners if illuminating the focusing points
    is feasible as a substitute for
    the Nikon option of an on-demand grid in the viewfinder. I know that
    after market focusing screens for Canon cameras with different grid
    options are available, but they seem very pricey.

    Thanks in advance for your help.

    Michael Eisenstadt
    Austin Texas
    Mike Eisenstadt, Jan 14, 2010
    #1
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  2. Mike Eisenstadt

    ransley Guest

    On Jan 14, 11:50 am, Mike Eisenstadt <> wrote:
    > Hi,
    >
    > I have been doing art documentation in 35mm slide film and I want to
    > upgrade to digital AS INEXPENSIVELY AS POSSIBLE. I already own a Canon
    > EOS 50mm macro lens which would argue for getting a Canon 10D or the
    > like. But art photography really requires having a grid in the
    > viewfinder to keep from keystoning rectangular paintings. The Nikon
    > D70s has the option of enabling an on-demand grid in the viewfinder,
    > although I could not find this option in the manual for the Nikon D40
    > or D60. The Canon 10D manual does not seem to offer on-demand gridding
    > the viewfinder, however it describes an option of illuminating the 7
    > automatic focusing points in the viewfinder. Their arrangement is
    > similar to a cross-hair grid, according to the illustration in the
    > manual.
    >
    > I am writing to ask Canon owners if illuminating the focusing points
    > is feasible as a substitute for
    > the Nikon option of an on-demand grid in the viewfinder. I know that
    > after market focusing screens for Canon cameras with different grid
    > options are available, but they seem very pricey.
    >
    > Thanks in advance for your help.
    >
    > Michael Eisenstadt
    > Austin Texas


    My T1i has a grid and I bet alot of other models do
    ransley, Jan 14, 2010
    #2
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  3. On Jan 14, 2:35 pm, ransley <> wrote:
    > On Jan 14, 11:50 am, Mike Eisenstadt <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >
    > > Hi,

    >
    > > I have been doing art documentation in 35mm slide film and I want to
    > > upgrade to digital AS INEXPENSIVELY AS POSSIBLE. I already own a Canon
    > > EOS 50mm macro lens which would argue for getting a Canon 10D or the
    > > like. But art photography really requires having a grid in the
    > > viewfinder to keep from keystoning rectangular paintings. The Nikon
    > > D70s has the option of enabling an on-demand grid in the viewfinder,
    > > although I could not find this option in the manual for the Nikon D40
    > > or D60. The Canon 10D manual does not seem to offer on-demand gridding
    > > the viewfinder, however it describes an option of illuminating the 7
    > > automatic focusing points in the viewfinder. Their arrangement is
    > > similar to a cross-hair grid, according to the illustration in the
    > > manual.

    >
    > > I am writing to ask Canon owners if illuminating the focusing points
    > > is feasible as a substitute for
    > > the Nikon option of an on-demand grid in the viewfinder. I know that
    > > after market focusing screens for Canon cameras with different grid
    > > options are available, but they seem very pricey.

    >
    > > Thanks in advance for your help.

    >
    > > Michael Eisenstadt
    > > Austin Texas

    >
    > My T1i has a grid and I bet alot of other models do


    I believe I mentioned that I want to upgrade inexpensively. The T1i
    model you mention costs more than I am prepared to pay. As I do not
    have access to a Canon digital SLR, I wrote because I was wondering if
    the automatic focus points when illuminated might serve as a cross-
    hair grid. If so, I would look for one of the less expensive Canon
    SLRs used on EBay seeing as I already have a Canon EOS 50mm macro.

    Thanks in advance for your help.

    Michael Eisenstadt
    Austin Texas

    Michael Eisenstadt
    Mike Eisenstadt, Jan 14, 2010
    #3
  4. Mike Eisenstadt

    Nervous Nick Guest

    On Jan 14, 11:50 am, Mike Eisenstadt <> wrote:
    > Hi,
    >
    > I have been doing art documentation in 35mm slide film and I want to
    > upgrade to digital AS INEXPENSIVELY AS POSSIBLE. I already own a Canon
    > EOS 50mm macro lens which would argue for getting a Canon 10D or the
    > like. But art photography really requires having a grid in the
    > viewfinder to keep from keystoning rectangular paintings. The Nikon
    > D70s has the option of enabling an on-demand grid in the viewfinder,
    > although I could not find this option in the manual for the Nikon D40
    > or D60. The Canon 10D manual does not seem to offer on-demand gridding
    > the viewfinder, however it describes an option of illuminating the 7
    > automatic focusing points in the viewfinder. Their arrangement is
    > similar to a cross-hair grid, according to the illustration in the
    > manual.
    >
    > I am writing to ask Canon owners if illuminating the focusing points
    > is feasible as a substitute for
    > the Nikon option of an on-demand grid in the viewfinder. I know that
    > after market focusing screens for Canon cameras with different grid
    > options are available, but they seem very pricey.


    You might not need a grid at all if you try this ridiculously simple
    method of aligninment:

    Set a mirror down on your copy stand (or on the artwork itself, if you
    can) and adjust the camera so that the reflection of its lens in the
    mirror is exactly centered in the viewfinder. If your camera is not
    seriously out of whack, your film or sensor plane will then be just
    about as close to exactly parallel to the plane of the copy stand or
    the artwork as you can get it.

    I have copied thousands of pieces of flat artwork using this method
    (with 35mm film cameras) and it has never failed me.

    And since you are going digital, any minimal perspective imperfections
    are easily rectified with software.

    It cannot hurt to try.

    --
    YOP...
    Nervous Nick, Jan 14, 2010
    #4
  5. Mike Eisenstadt

    Ofnuts Guest

    On 14/01/2010 23:09, Mike Eisenstadt wrote:

    >
    > I believe I mentioned that I want to upgrade inexpensively. The T1i
    > model you mention costs more than I am prepared to pay. As I do not
    > have access to a Canon digital SLR, I wrote because I was wondering if
    > the automatic focus points when illuminated might serve as a cross-
    > hair grid. If so, I would look for one of the less expensive Canon
    > SLRs used on EBay seeing as I already have a Canon EOS 50mm macro.
    >


    On my 450D the focus points appear in the viewfinder as small squares
    which I routinely use to make sure the camera is level by aligning them
    on a vertical/horizontal line of the scene. I don't even need to
    illuminate them.

    --
    Bertrand
    Ofnuts, Jan 14, 2010
    #5
  6. Mike Eisenstadt

    Ofnuts Guest

    On 15/01/2010 00:38, Nervous Nick wrote:

    > And since you are going digital, any minimal perspective imperfections
    > are easily rectified with software.


    This may however require a bit more pixels than the 6Mpix of the 10D.

    --
    Bertrand
    Ofnuts, Jan 15, 2010
    #6
  7. Mike Eisenstadt <> wrote:

    > I have been doing art documentation in 35mm slide film and I want to
    > upgrade to digital AS INEXPENSIVELY AS POSSIBLE. I already own a Canon
    > EOS 50mm macro lens which would argue for getting a Canon 10D or the
    > like. But art photography really requires having a grid in the
    > viewfinder to keep from keystoning rectangular paintings. The Nikon
    > D70s has the option of enabling an on-demand grid in the viewfinder,
    > although I could not find this option in the manual for the Nikon D40
    > or D60. The Canon 10D manual does not seem to offer on-demand gridding
    > the viewfinder, however it describes an option of illuminating the 7
    > automatic focusing points in the viewfinder. Their arrangement is
    > similar to a cross-hair grid, according to the illustration in the
    > manual.


    > I am writing to ask Canon owners if illuminating the focusing points
    > is feasible as a substitute for
    > the Nikon option of an on-demand grid in the viewfinder. I know that
    > after market focusing screens for Canon cameras with different grid
    > options are available, but they seem very pricey.


    The cheapest way of getting a grid would probably be either to buy a
    shade for your camera's LCD, and build a fine wire grid into it. Or
    with a fine mapping pen and appropriate ink draw fine lines on a
    plastic LCD screen protector.

    --
    Chris Malcolm
    Chris Malcolm, Jan 15, 2010
    #7
  8. Ofnuts <> wrote:
    > On 15/01/2010 00:38, Nervous Nick wrote:


    >> And since you are going digital, any minimal perspective imperfections
    >> are easily rectified with software.


    > This may however require a bit more pixels than the 6Mpix of the 10D.


    Small perspective and tilting adjustments can these days with good
    software be done with very little impact on the detail resolution
    (i.e. hard to notice any loss), and being small corrections, there is
    very little loss of pixels in the bits of edge which get cropped off.

    The losses of software corrections have quite understandably been
    exaggerated by the people in camera shops who hope to persuade you to
    buy a lens which won't need to be corrected, plus all those people who
    bought one :)

    --
    Chris Malcolm
    Chris Malcolm, Jan 15, 2010
    #8
  9. "ransley" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    []
    > My T1i has a grid and I bet alot of other models do


    Yes, the Nikon D5000 does as well.

    David
    David J Taylor, Jan 15, 2010
    #9
  10. Mike Eisenstadt

    ransley Guest

    On Jan 14, 4:09 pm, Mike Eisenstadt <> wrote:
    > On Jan 14, 2:35 pm, ransley <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    > > On Jan 14, 11:50 am, Mike Eisenstadt <> wrote:

    >
    > > > Hi,

    >
    > > > I have been doing art documentation in 35mm slide film and I want to
    > > > upgrade to digital AS INEXPENSIVELY AS POSSIBLE. I already own a Canon
    > > > EOS 50mm macro lens which would argue for getting a Canon 10D or the
    > > > like. But art photography really requires having a grid in the
    > > > viewfinder to keep from keystoning rectangular paintings. The Nikon
    > > > D70s has the option of enabling an on-demand grid in the viewfinder,
    > > > although I could not find this option in the manual for the Nikon D40
    > > > or D60. The Canon 10D manual does not seem to offer on-demand gridding
    > > > the viewfinder, however it describes an option of illuminating the 7
    > > > automatic focusing points in the viewfinder. Their arrangement is
    > > > similar to a cross-hair grid, according to the illustration in the
    > > > manual.

    >
    > > > I am writing to ask Canon owners if illuminating the focusing points
    > > > is feasible as a substitute for
    > > > the Nikon option of an on-demand grid in the viewfinder. I know that
    > > > after market focusing screens for Canon cameras with different grid
    > > > options are available, but they seem very pricey.

    >
    > > > Thanks in advance for your help.

    >
    > > > Michael Eisenstadt
    > > > Austin Texas

    >
    > > My T1i has a grid and I bet alot of other models do

    >
    > I believe I mentioned that I want to upgrade inexpensively. The T1i
    > model you mention costs more than I am prepared to pay. As I do not
    > have access to a Canon digital SLR, I wrote because I was wondering if
    > the automatic focus points  when illuminated might serve as a cross-
    > hair grid. If so, I would look for one of the less expensive Canon
    > SLRs used on EBay seeing as I already have a Canon EOS 50mm macro.
    >
    > Thanks in advance for your help.
    >
    > Michael Eisenstadt
    > Austin Texas
    >
    > Michael Eisenstadt- Hide quoted text -
    >
    > - Show quoted text -


    I believe I mentioned "other models do" actualy maybe all of them, I
    just looked at the 1000d, it has grid. Forget the auto focus points as
    they are momentary , dpreview will show you displays of canon dslrs,
    or google it works.
    ransley, Jan 15, 2010
    #10
  11. Mike Eisenstadt

    Better Info Guest

    On 15 Jan 2010 02:27:42 GMT, Chris Malcolm <> wrote:

    >Mike Eisenstadt <> wrote:
    >
    >> I have been doing art documentation in 35mm slide film and I want to
    >> upgrade to digital AS INEXPENSIVELY AS POSSIBLE. I already own a Canon
    >> EOS 50mm macro lens which would argue for getting a Canon 10D or the
    >> like. But art photography really requires having a grid in the
    >> viewfinder to keep from keystoning rectangular paintings. The Nikon
    >> D70s has the option of enabling an on-demand grid in the viewfinder,
    >> although I could not find this option in the manual for the Nikon D40
    >> or D60. The Canon 10D manual does not seem to offer on-demand gridding
    >> the viewfinder, however it describes an option of illuminating the 7
    >> automatic focusing points in the viewfinder. Their arrangement is
    >> similar to a cross-hair grid, according to the illustration in the
    >> manual.

    >
    >> I am writing to ask Canon owners if illuminating the focusing points
    >> is feasible as a substitute for
    >> the Nikon option of an on-demand grid in the viewfinder. I know that
    >> after market focusing screens for Canon cameras with different grid
    >> options are available, but they seem very pricey.

    >
    >The cheapest way of getting a grid would probably be either to buy a
    >shade for your camera's LCD, and build a fine wire grid into it. Or
    >with a fine mapping pen and appropriate ink draw fine lines on a
    >plastic LCD screen protector.


    Or use any of the high-quality P&S Canon cameras that are supported by the
    free CHDK programming add-on. Their contrast-detection focusing in them is
    much more accurate than any phase-contrast focusing method in a DSLR too.

    http://chdk.wikia.com/wiki/Grids

    Then he can load any grid alignment pattern he wants, or even simply design
    his own with an easy graphics drawing programming language (see that page
    for examples). Keep all these small grid-definition files on your SD card
    in a /Grids/ sub-folder and load them as needed with a few button presses.

    Plus many of the zoom lenses on P&S cameras have less barrel and pincushion
    distortion than the very best DSLR glass available. Good examples: the
    Canon Powershot S2, S3, and S5 cameras' 12X zoom-lenses have less than 1%
    barrel distortion at wide-angle and less than 0.1% pincushion distortion at
    full zoom, with a large central range of focal-lengths where the distortion
    is undetectable. You can get all that for less than the cost of one custom
    DSLR focusing-screen alone.
    Better Info, Jan 15, 2010
    #11
  12. Mike Eisenstadt

    MikeWhy Guest

    "David J Taylor"
    <-this-bit.and-this-part.co.uk.invalid> wrote
    in message news:2RV3n.26422$...
    > "ransley" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    > []
    >> My T1i has a grid and I bet alot of other models do

    >
    > Yes, the Nikon D5000 does as well.


    The 7D has an electronic level in the VF. As well as a grid if you want. The
    LCD can have both also, plus aspect masks for 16:9, 4:5, 6:6, 6:7, and a few
    others. (Mine's bigger; lasts longer.)
    MikeWhy, Jan 15, 2010
    #12
  13. Mike Eisenstadt

    Ray Fischer Guest

    Better Info <> wrote:
    >On 15 Jan 2010 02:27:42 GMT, Chris Malcolm <> wrote:
    >
    >>Mike Eisenstadt <> wrote:
    >>
    >>> I have been doing art documentation in 35mm slide film and I want to
    >>> upgrade to digital AS INEXPENSIVELY AS POSSIBLE. I already own a Canon
    >>> EOS 50mm macro lens which would argue for getting a Canon 10D or the
    >>> like. But art photography really requires having a grid in the
    >>> viewfinder to keep from keystoning rectangular paintings. The Nikon
    >>> D70s has the option of enabling an on-demand grid in the viewfinder,
    >>> although I could not find this option in the manual for the Nikon D40
    >>> or D60. The Canon 10D manual does not seem to offer on-demand gridding
    >>> the viewfinder, however it describes an option of illuminating the 7
    >>> automatic focusing points in the viewfinder. Their arrangement is
    >>> similar to a cross-hair grid, according to the illustration in the
    >>> manual.

    >>
    >>> I am writing to ask Canon owners if illuminating the focusing points
    >>> is feasible as a substitute for
    >>> the Nikon option of an on-demand grid in the viewfinder. I know that
    >>> after market focusing screens for Canon cameras with different grid
    >>> options are available, but they seem very pricey.

    >>
    >>The cheapest way of getting a grid would probably be either to buy a
    >>shade for your camera's LCD, and build a fine wire grid into it. Or
    >>with a fine mapping pen and appropriate ink draw fine lines on a
    >>plastic LCD screen protector.

    >
    >Or use any of the high-quality P&S Canon cameras that are supported by the


    Go away, asshole troll.

    --
    Ray Fischer
    Ray Fischer, Jan 16, 2010
    #13
  14. Mike Eisenstadt

    ransley Guest

    On Jan 15, 12:44 pm, Better Info <> wrote:
    > On 15 Jan 2010 02:27:42 GMT, Chris Malcolm <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    > >Mike Eisenstadt <> wrote:

    >
    > >> I have been doing art documentation in 35mm slide film and I want to
    > >> upgrade to digital AS INEXPENSIVELY AS POSSIBLE. I already own a Canon
    > >> EOS 50mm macro lens which would argue for getting a Canon 10D or the
    > >> like. But art photography really requires having a grid in the
    > >> viewfinder to keep from keystoning rectangular paintings. The Nikon
    > >> D70s has the option of enabling an on-demand grid in the viewfinder,
    > >> although I could not find this option in the manual for the Nikon D40
    > >> or D60. The Canon 10D manual does not seem to offer on-demand gridding
    > >> the viewfinder, however it describes an option of illuminating the 7
    > >> automatic focusing points in the viewfinder. Their arrangement is
    > >> similar to a cross-hair grid, according to the illustration in the
    > >> manual.

    >
    > >> I am writing to ask Canon owners if illuminating the focusing points
    > >> is feasible as a substitute for
    > >> the Nikon option of an on-demand grid in the viewfinder. I know that
    > >> after market focusing screens for Canon cameras with different grid
    > >> options are available, but they seem very pricey.

    >
    > >The cheapest way of getting a grid would probably be either to buy a
    > >shade for your camera's LCD, and build a fine wire grid into it. Or
    > >with a fine mapping pen and appropriate ink draw fine lines on a
    > >plastic LCD screen protector.

    >
    > Or use any of the high-quality P&S Canon cameras that are supported by the
    > free CHDK programming add-on. Their contrast-detection focusing in them is
    > much more accurate than any phase-contrast focusing method in a DSLR too.
    >
    > http://chdk.wikia.com/wiki/Grids
    >
    > Then he can load any grid alignment pattern he wants, or even simply design
    > his own with an easy graphics drawing programming language (see that page
    > for examples). Keep all these small grid-definition files on your SD card
    > in a /Grids/ sub-folder and load them as needed with a few button presses..
    >
    > Plus many of the zoom lenses on P&S cameras have less barrel and pincushion
    > distortion than the very best DSLR glass available. Good examples: the
    > Canon Powershot S2, S3, and S5 cameras' 12X zoom-lenses have less than 1%
    > barrel distortion at wide-angle and less than 0.1% pincushion distortion at
    > full zoom, with a large central range of focal-lengths where the distortion
    > is undetectable. You can get all that for less than the cost of one custom
    > DSLR focusing-screen alone.- Hide quoted text -
    >
    > - Show quoted text -


    Oh wake up Ftard, for art documentation manual focusing, higher
    dynamic range, better color, contrast, white balance flexibility, end
    result of photo, etc etc etc will be better with a dslr, my 2 very
    good P&S cant do what dslr offers, thats why I got a dslr, just to
    many limitations and difficulties with a P&S
    ransley, Jan 16, 2010
    #14
  15. Mike Eisenstadt

    Robert Coe Guest

    On Fri, 15 Jan 2010 02:28:50 +0100, Ofnuts <> wrote:
    : On 15/01/2010 00:38, Nervous Nick wrote:
    :
    : > And since you are going digital, any minimal perspective imperfections
    : > are easily rectified with software.
    :
    : This may however require a bit more pixels than the 6Mpix of the 10D.

    So get an XS or a used XTi.

    Bob
    Robert Coe, Jan 17, 2010
    #15
  16. Chris Malcolm <> wrote:

    > The losses of software corrections have quite understandably been
    > exaggerated by the people in camera shops who hope to persuade you to
    > buy a lens which won't need to be corrected, plus all those people who
    > bought one :)


    That myth is carried by people who have too much free time or
    don't shoot more than 5 exposures a month.

    Not only will the serious shooter repeat each digital step for
    each photograph (which gets old real soon), it also costs time
    better spend relaxing or shooting. But for the right gear you
    only pay once and then have far more joy using it.

    -Wolfgang
    Wolfgang Weisselberg, Jan 21, 2010
    #16
  17. Wolfgang Weisselberg <> wrote:
    > Chris Malcolm <> wrote:


    >> The losses of software corrections have quite understandably been
    >> exaggerated by the people in camera shops who hope to persuade you to
    >> buy a lens which won't need to be corrected, plus all those people who
    >> bought one :)


    > That myth is carried by people who have too much free time or
    > don't shoot more than 5 exposures a month.


    It's not a myth. I've measured it. But you're right that it takes a
    lot of extra post processing time. So if you do a lot of perspective
    adjusted shooting a shift lens might be the better choice.

    > Not only will the serious shooter repeat each digital step for
    > each photograph (which gets old real soon), it also costs time
    > better spend relaxing or shooting. But for the right gear you
    > only pay once and then have far more joy using it.


    Well, I probably only shoot a few shots I want to shift perspective on
    a week. And if I wanted to do it optically I'd probably have to buy at
    least two shift lenses, since I like to do perspective adjustment over
    quite a range of focal lengths.

    --
    Chris Malcolm
    Chris Malcolm, Jan 22, 2010
    #17
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