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Canon 814 focus technique


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#1 ken wood

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Posted 27 June 2006 - 11:25 AM

I recently purchased a Canon 814 off eBay (where else?) and I am attempting to get familar with its operation.
What I have not figured out is how does the focus system work?
At what point is it considered in focus? The round circle with the triangle facets do change shading but which is correct: intense shading or closer to no shading?

Any help would be appreciated.
ken wood
camarillo ca
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#2 Rick Palidwor

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Posted 27 June 2006 - 07:27 PM

Start by adjusting the diopter (the viewfinder). You'll find that the whole viewfinder mechanism turns (the black ring is a lock ring. Loosen it to start if need be, and use it to tighten everything up when you are done.) When adjusting the viewfinder, turn it and notice how everything goes in and out of focus. Look at something bright (sky is best), to fill it with light, and you want the data in the viewfinder (the aperture numbers for example) as sharp as possible. You don't care about anything in front of the lens: it's the viewfinder itself you want sharp. If the circle in the middle is your reference, you want it as defined as possible. (I tell people to use the aperture numbers because they know what they are supposed to look like and it's easier to judge).

Once you think you've adjusted the viewfinder, do a spot check. Look at something, say, 10 feet away, zoom in, and focus with the focus ring this time. Once you get it in focus look at where you ended up on the focus ring. Whatever the distance between you and the object should be the same as on the focus ring. Measure if you need to. If you focused properly then you know you set the viewfinder right. If you are off, go back to the viewfinder and try again.

If you are having trouble with the viewfinder work backward. Measure, say, 10 feet to an object, set the focus ring to 10 feet. THeoretically it should be in focus. Now adjust the viewfinder to make it so (this time you care about what you see in front of the lens).

Does this make sense.
Rick
p.s. you don't mention which 814 you have. When I mentioned the lock ring on the diopter, I am assuming you have the silver 814 autozoom. If it's the autozoom E (later model) there is no lock ring.
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#3 ken wood

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Posted 28 June 2006 - 10:07 AM

Start by adjusting the diopter (the viewfinder). You'll find that the whole viewfinder mechanism turns (the black ring is a lock ring. Loosen it to start if need be, and use it to tighten everything up when you are done.) When adjusting the viewfinder, turn it and notice how everything goes in and out of focus. Look at something bright (sky is best), to fill it with light, and you want the data in the viewfinder (the aperture numbers for example) as sharp as possible. You don't care about anything in front of the lens: it's the viewfinder itself you want sharp. If the circle in the middle is your reference, you want it as defined as possible. (I tell people to use the aperture numbers because they know what they are supposed to look like and it's easier to judge).

Once you think you've adjusted the viewfinder, do a spot check. Look at something, say, 10 feet away, zoom in, and focus with the focus ring this time. Once you get it in focus look at where you ended up on the focus ring. Whatever the distance between you and the object should be the same as on the focus ring. Measure if you need to. If you focused properly then you know you set the viewfinder right. If you are off, go back to the viewfinder and try again.

If you are having trouble with the viewfinder work backward. Measure, say, 10 feet to an object, set the focus ring to 10 feet. THeoretically it should be in focus. Now adjust the viewfinder to make it so (this time you care about what you see in front of the lens).

Does this make sense.
Rick
p.s. you don't mention which 814 you have. When I mentioned the lock ring on the diopter, I am assuming you have the silver 814 autozoom. If it's the autozoom E (later model) there is no lock ring.

Sorry I forgot to mention that it is the Electronic model. Except for the focus ring lock I think it is the same.
Working my way through your excellent instructions.
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Aerial Filmworks

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Glidecam

The Slider

Metropolis Post

Willys Widgets

Wooden Camera

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

FJS International, LLC

Ritter Battery

CineLab