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Thread: Help with focus on 500D when using the sports mode

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    Help with focus on 500D when using the sports mode

    I shot a good series of shots of my dog chasing her ball. A simple thing but she really gets into it so I took some pics using the sports mode. They are not bad but when I enlarge them I can see they are not crystal clear. Is there anything else I need to adjust before I take the shots.... still learning. Thank you

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    My first question is what lens in particular you are using?

    The default sports mode will change the focus mode to AI Servo BUT you don't get to select a focus point (not too important in this case) NOR the aperture (which is important)

    In terms of hardware, I will use a lens has USM or similar.

    In terms of camera setting - AND assuming your dog doesn't move in hyper speed like bird, I will use

    1) Av mode
    2) Auto focus mode: AI Servo
    3) Auto ISO
    4) Set the aperture to f/8 to f/11 - which helps to create more Depth of Field = bigger range of area where everything will be focused and crystal clear.

    All of above AV mode setting is assume is your dog doesn't move crazy quick.

    IF your dog is a fast one:

    1) Tv mode - and set to 1/500 or faster
    2) Auto focus mode: AI Servo
    3) Auto ISO
    4) make sure the dog is under an environment where plenty of light is available.

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    Member Higham's Avatar
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    You could also switch on High Speed shutter mode (burst fire). Taking multiple shots of your dog, your sure to at least get one or two sharp images. A lens with a USM is also an advantage.

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    Member CraigPauli's Avatar
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    If you make sure the first one you let it focus fully then hold shutter down in continuous shoot mode and keep the dog placed roughly same spot in focus area ,it will keep it in focus. I found if took a few shots and fully released shutter it would hunt for focus again.

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    Sports mode automatically uses the centre AF point, so you may need to crop to get a nicer composition.

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    Just an idea (which I have never tried), but:

    You should be able to set high shutter speed mode (as mentioned by Higham) and instead of upping the shutter speed as high as you can to get it sharp, track the dog's movement with the lens. You will need the burst mode in the hope of getting a sharp image, and it should put the background into motion blur.

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