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Thread: Lens Align Mark II

  1. #1
    Publisher Arthur Morris's Avatar
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    Default Lens Align Mark II

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails _-_-BPN-LensAlignMkII_Tripod_1000-01-best.jpg  

    After two eight hour days of writing, clarifying, re-writing, testing, and studying, I published the definitive Lens Align Long Lens Tutorial on the blog today here.

    Interest has been huge and all single day view records were shattered :).

    I would be glad to answer any questions either here or on the blog.

    The Lens Align Mark II makes doing micro-adjustments easy, affordable, and even fun.
    later and love, artie......... Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

    BIRDS AS ART Blog: great info and lessons, lots of images with our legendary BAA educational Captions.
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    Forum Participant Mike Tracy's Avatar
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    What I can not figure out is how you, myself and others have been producing sharp images for years before the benefit of MA and all these gizmos.

    That said, I have tried most of the various techniques over the years to satisfy my own curiousity. My results are all over the place. I might add that Canons own Chuck Westfall is on record saying not to use a angled test chart.

    I do not think there is any conclusive evidence one way is more effective then another.

  3. #3
    Publisher Arthur Morris's Avatar
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    As I said, it's nice to make your sharp images even sharper. BTW, I never got to comment on your recent Turkey Vulture post; that image was not even close to being sharp. Perhaps you should have Lens Aligned your Nikon stuff before that session...

    And I am not shocked at all that you have misquoted Chuck to further your negativity.

    What Chuck says is that the focus target should not be angled.
    later and love, artie......... Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

    BIRDS AS ART Blog: great info and lessons, lots of images with our legendary BAA educational Captions.
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    Publisher Arthur Morris's Avatar
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    Furthermore, the Lens Align Mark II and all of the Lens Align products feature True Parallel Alignment that ensures consistency. And my tutorial lets folks know exactly what to do to ensure that consistency.
    later and love, artie......... Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

    BIRDS AS ART Blog: great info and lessons, lots of images with our legendary BAA educational Captions.
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    Forum Participant Mike Tracy's Avatar
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    Perhaps you should have read my exif, I shoot Canon.

    I seldom worry about critical sharpness when resizing for web display.

    Why is it if someone has a differing opinion from yours its always "negative" ?

    We are getting into semantics regarding what you think I was saying and what you are. The following is from a discussion of his. I will let the members sort out it out.

    • Do not attempt to autofocus on an angled chart, because doing so will degrade the consistency of the camera's focusing measurement. Keep in mind that the camera's AF sensor is comprised of multiple pairs of linear pixel arrays. If you attempt to autofocus on a single line in an angled focusing chart, only a few pixels from each active pixel array will "see" the target. Ideally, the contrast in the reference target should cover the entire area of the camera's center focusing point, and the reference target should be perfectly parallel to the camera's focal plane.

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    Publisher Arthur Morris's Avatar
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    Thanks for the clarification on the Canon/Nikon thing. I am not buying the "I seldom worry about critical sharpness when resizing for web display" line. I have seen many of your images and all of them have been either sharp or razor sharp. The Turkey Vulture image as I said was not even close to sharp. I apologize for not getting to comment there.

    As I clearly stated, you misquoted Chuck. Perhaps your failure to understand what he wrote led you to misquote him.

    He is stating that you should "not attempt to autofocus on an angled chart." With the Lens Align stuff, you focus on a target that is parallel (actually perfectly parallel) to the sensor. It is the ruler that is angled. You do not focus on the ruler.

    Therefore you clearly mis-quoted him. It is not at all a matter of semantics.

    Once you understand that concept, get back to me and we can continue the discussion.
    later and love, artie......... Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

    BIRDS AS ART Blog: great info and lessons, lots of images with our legendary BAA educational Captions.
    BIRDS AS ART Online Store: we will not sell you junk. 30+ years of long lens experience/e-mail with gear questions.
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    Forum Participant Rick McDaniel's Avatar
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    Art, great blog post on the LA II.

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    Publisher Arthur Morris's Avatar
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    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Focus-on-the-target-Untitled-1.jpg  

    This screen capture shows the focus point--in red--properly on the test target rather than on the angled ruler to the right.

    In the first iteration of my crude testing methodology I had folks incorrectly focusing on an angled (ruled) target. It the most recent updates to the User's Guides, I had folks focus on a target that was (roughly) parallel to the back of the camera. Lens Align with TPA ensures perfect parallel alignment to the test target.
    later and love, artie......... Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

    BIRDS AS ART Blog: great info and lessons, lots of images with our legendary BAA educational Captions.
    BIRDS AS ART Online Store: we will not sell you junk. 30+ years of long lens experience/e-mail with gear questions.
    BIRDS AS ART Instructional Photo-Tours: we cost more because you get more and learn more.






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    Publisher Arthur Morris's Avatar
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    The above is from a BreezeBrowser screen capture BTW.
    later and love, artie......... Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

    BIRDS AS ART Blog: great info and lessons, lots of images with our legendary BAA educational Captions.
    BIRDS AS ART Online Store: we will not sell you junk. 30+ years of long lens experience/e-mail with gear questions.
    BIRDS AS ART Instructional Photo-Tours: we cost more because you get more and learn more.






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    Forum Participant Robert Amoruso's Avatar
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    Thanks for the excellent tutorial Artie.

    I have been following the development of the Lens Align, Chuck's comments and your evolution of AF microadjustment in the user's guide and think you have come up with the best method so far Michael's LensAlign.

    Any opinion on the other "Pro" versions of LensAlign for someone deciding which version to purchase? I understand the reason for the longer ruler (long telephotos at greater distance from target and wide-angles) but do you see in your use so far of the MKII unit whether someone considering a purchase should opt for one of the other units?

    Much appreciated.
    Last edited by Robert Amoruso; 01-13-2011 at 11:00 AM.

  11. #11
    Forum Participant David Kennedy's Avatar
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    Default LensAlign Pro & MKII Reviews online

    Due to some extenuating circumstances it took me a while to write up my own review of the LensAlign MkII (Michael Tapes sent me a prototype in December and a final production version in January) but my conclusion is parallel to Artie's: this is the only game in town for fine-tuning the autofocus performance of your camera with your lenses.

    Robert, I also wrote a review of the LensAlign Pro (Part One and Part Two) last fall. The fundamental differences between the two products is that one is sturdier (Pro) but one is portable (MkII), the Pro has adjustable ruler angles (sort of a benefit, but only in certain conditions), and the "Long Ruler Kit" for the MkII will be two feet long whereas the one for the Pro is four feet.

    However, for the kind of photography most of the people on this forum do, the Long Ruler Kit isn't really necessary, as it's for helping determine optimum AF Micro-Adjustment at great distances with long lenses, whereas most folks are trying to make sharp pictures closer to the the minimum-focus distance of their lenses for frame-filling subjects.

    Cheers!
    David

  12. #12
    Lifetime Member Jay Gould's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur Morris View Post
    This screen capture shows the focus point--in red--properly on the test target rather than on the angled ruler to the right.

    In the first iteration of my crude testing methodology I had folks incorrectly focusing on an angled (ruled) target. It the most recent updates to the User's Guides, I had folks focus on a target that was (roughly) parallel to the back of the camera. Lens Align with TPA ensures perfect parallel alignment to the test target.


    This is an extremely important point that I too missed the first time around.

    When you are using the Remote Live View, you have to move the focus point back and forth and you apply MA, focus, and then move over to the ruler to check alignment. If the alignment is "off" and you apply more MA, you must move the sensor focus point back to the target before you focus with the new amount of MA.

    The LA-MA process is a back and forth process using Live View.
    Cheers, Jay

    My Digital Art - "Nature Interpreted" - can now be view at http://www.luvntravlnphotography.com

    "Nature Interpreted" - Photography begins with your mind and eyes, and ends with an image representing your vision and your reality of the captured scene; photography exceeds the camera sensor's limitations. Capturing and Processing landscapes and seascapes allows me to express my vision and reality of Nature.

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    Publisher Arthur Morris's Avatar
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    I am not positive but I believe that you are in error.... I think that it is proper to set the central sensor and leave it.... Once you go to 5X or to 10X in tethered Live View then you need to move the large green square to the right to view the ruler.... But there is no need to move the active AF point....
    later and love, artie......... Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

    BIRDS AS ART Blog: great info and lessons, lots of images with our legendary BAA educational Captions.
    BIRDS AS ART Online Store: we will not sell you junk. 30+ years of long lens experience/e-mail with gear questions.
    BIRDS AS ART Instructional Photo-Tours: we cost more because you get more and learn more.






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    Lifetime Member Jay Gould's Avatar
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    Artie, I have no problem being wrong; it is the best way to learn.

    I believe when you move the green box you are also moving the active sensor. That is why it is necessary, according to Peter, to move the view back to the target before focusing again.

    I am in email contact with Canon support on the Remote Live View issues. I will specifically send them a couple of screen shots and ask about this issue.
    Cheers, Jay

    My Digital Art - "Nature Interpreted" - can now be view at http://www.luvntravlnphotography.com

    "Nature Interpreted" - Photography begins with your mind and eyes, and ends with an image representing your vision and your reality of the captured scene; photography exceeds the camera sensor's limitations. Capturing and Processing landscapes and seascapes allows me to express my vision and reality of Nature.

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    Publisher Arthur Morris's Avatar
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    I am 99% sure that the green box is not the point of focus when you are in Quick Mode (mirror up) focusing. It is the point of focus when you are in Live Mode focus....

    I would not expect much help from that source....
    later and love, artie......... Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

    BIRDS AS ART Blog: great info and lessons, lots of images with our legendary BAA educational Captions.
    BIRDS AS ART Online Store: we will not sell you junk. 30+ years of long lens experience/e-mail with gear questions.
    BIRDS AS ART Instructional Photo-Tours: we cost more because you get more and learn more.






  16. #16
    Lifetime Member Jay Gould's Avatar
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    Hi, that is an interesting difference. Why do you use Quick Mode instead of Live View? What is the advantage in QM? In LV you get to see the camera go through the focus operation each time you intentionally blur the scene.
    Cheers, Jay

    My Digital Art - "Nature Interpreted" - can now be view at http://www.luvntravlnphotography.com

    "Nature Interpreted" - Photography begins with your mind and eyes, and ends with an image representing your vision and your reality of the captured scene; photography exceeds the camera sensor's limitations. Capturing and Processing landscapes and seascapes allows me to express my vision and reality of Nature.

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