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Thread: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

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    Member marktomaras's Avatar
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    Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    The Problem:
    When using the manual focus magnification feature on the A7R2 (and predumably on the other Sony cameras as well), the entire area of the viewfinder or rear LCD screen will fully enlarge to the half or full magnification level, effectively blacking out the field of view to the photographer by filling it with a small portion of the subject.

    The Solution:
    Rather than fill the area of the viewfidner with just a small portion of the subject, leave the full field of view of the lens to take up the majority of the viewfinder, and superimpose a small box in the center of the screen (or movable by the user) that contains a 100% magnification. This will allow one to observe a scene, aim the camera to put an important part of the subject in the 100% magnification square, focus, recompose, and shoot, all while never taking the photographer's eye off of the field of view. This is how SLRs worked for decades, and also how Lecia's range finder cameras have worked for decades (minus the magnification factor, of course). The reason is, this works! For the photographer, the field of view is paramount! A focus aid should not disconnect the photographer from the scene.

    Here is a link to a petition to show Sony that this request is supported. Please sign it!
    https://www.change.org/p/sony-sony-p...s-magnificatio...

    youtube Link to see video of problem & solution:
    https://youtu.be/SLbIXLvzknc

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Magic Lantern for Canon does that. But I find it's still hard to compose with the picture-in-picture in the way.

    A lesser known function of Magic Lantern is 'zoom on half-shutter'. This activates the magnifier when the shutter is halfway depressed (focus is assigned to a back button) and deactivates it when you let go. I didn't think this would be anything great at first, but it really turned out to be by far the best solution I've encountered. I experienced a huge increase in the number of in-focus photos shot with the 5DII & 85 1.2 wide open.
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    this is a a bad idea imho and inferior to the way it works today ! to focus and re-compose contradicts the idea of high precise focusing which is possible with this feature.
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by CSP View Post
    this is a a bad idea imho and inferior to the way it works today ! to focus and re-compose contradicts the idea of high precise focusing which is possible with this feature.
    Have to agree and I want a full screen magnified view so I can see better. That's the point if it. It's not a composing tool
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by CSP View Post
    this is a a bad idea imho and inferior to the way it works today ! to focus and re-compose contradicts the idea of high precise focusing which is possible with this feature.
    Panasonic m43rds offers this (from G1 on). I agree.

    Lets get 14bit lossless RAW first.

    Let Sony, the largest sensor maker, justify the performance of their sensor with decent processing power to match.

    It is a real shame that they do not offer this possibility despite the hefty price tags on their cams.

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    Senior Member pegelli's Avatar
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    I don't think the current method is useless or inferior. I can see why what you propose would be handy sometimes, but most of the time I think I would prefer the current method because I want the magnified view as large as possible. So if they implement it I hope the old option will remain to be possible as well.
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    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Hi,

    I would say the Sony solution is OK for accurate focus, certainly not very practical for handheld shooting.

    We all have some favourite features of our own.

    The A7 variants are pretty much the only game if you want full frame mirrorless and they have a decent price point. The only alternative is really Leica.

    That said, I would agree that there are many stupid things about the Sony A7. For instance, the focus assist magnifies around 5x, you should be able to choose between 5x and 12x. Well perhaps you can? It is not easy to find out in the menu system or in the manual.

    But, there is no perfect system. You choose one and live with it's foibles and limitations.

    Someone has commented about that lack of uncompressed 14 bit. Now Sony has uncompressed 16 bits. There has been an incredible lot of noise about some very rare artefacts caused by the delta compression part of the Sony raws. That was visible on some very specific subjects like star trails. DP-review has also some samples illustrating it.

    So Sony gave us 16 bit uncompressed raws. So folks now complain about not having 14 bits uncompressed or 14 bits losslessly compressed. How many new raw file formats do they want?

    If we go back to those compression artefacts, the person who really started it was Lloyd Chambers. I have some respect for his testing, but I have some issues with the way he publishes things. One is that he publishes his findings on his blog but you need to subscribe for details. If you subscribe you cannot share info. Lloyd was kind enough to share some raw files that shows the 'orange peel' artefacts but his conditions don't permit me to discuss my findings.

    I am somewhat disturbed by the approach to making some statement but closing the door on discussion.

    Sorry for meandering away from the original subject...

    Best regards
    Erik




    Quote Originally Posted by pegelli View Post
    I don't think the current method is useless or inferior. I can see why what you propose would be handy sometimes, but most of the time I think I would prefer the current method because I want the magnified view as large as possible. So if they implement it I hope the old option will remain to be possible as well.
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    Senior Member Lucille's Avatar
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Useless or very inferior you say?

    Maybe for you, works great for me.
    the HepKitty
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Not sure I'd agree that the mag feature on the A7R-II is inferior, let alone useless. Inferior compared to what? My experience is that it works as advertised.

    While it is not specifically designed for manual focus hand-held work, it can be used for that IF one bothers to practice with it until it becomes more muscle memory than a thought process.

    My mag function is assigned to the custom button right next to the shutter button, and after practicing with it has become pretty fast and reliable for work with my manual focus Leica M lenses.

    I do use some additional techniques learned from focusing manual lenses over the years. Depending on how and what you shoot, you can get in the habit of returning the focus to infinity after each set of shots. If you look at the distance markers on manual lenses like the Ms, you'll see that a vast majority of the distance scale is packed together on the infinity end, and adjusting for focus between 10' and infinity is a very short throw (i.e., Fast!). This infinity technique also teaches you to move the focus ring in the same direction every time eliminating manual back-and-forth hunting.

    Hope this makes sense,

    - Marc
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    @Erik. Lots of confusing things in many sentences.

    The fact is that Sony have not yet offered lossless RAW (compressed or uncompressed) in any E mount cam.

    They should.

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    Senior Member pegelli's Avatar
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    @Erik. Lots of confusing things in many sentences.

    The fact is that Sony have not yet offered lossless RAW (compressed or uncompressed) in any E mount cam.

    They should.
    Sorry for continuing off topic, since it hasn't anything to do with the magnified focus view. However I thought they now provide lossless Raw for some of the newer A7 cams (A7ii and A7rii) with a firmware update, or wasn't it fully fixed?

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Pieter, Lossy uncompressed is the best they do (my RX1RII offers it).

    Your doubt underlines exactly why i had to reiterate the fact.

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Hi,

    Both A7rII and A7II have loss less raw in 16 bit files. That is fact. Truth may be confusing.

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    @Erik. Lots of confusing things in many sentences.

    The fact is that Sony have not yet offered lossless RAW (compressed or uncompressed) in any E mount cam.

    They should.

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Then one has to qualify the "truth". Is it local or global?

    Any links to Sony's claim that is the case?

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Hi,

    I have checked out the files using raw digger.

    I am on travel with just an iPad, so I cannot post any evidence of my own right now.

    But, you can check this info on DPReview: What difference does it make? Sony uncompressed Raw: Digital Photography Review

    Keep in mind that Sony A7 models operate in either 12 bit or 14 bit modes. AFAIK only single shot modes without Long Exposure Noise Reduction are actually 14 bits.

    That is relevant to some extent, as there is an observable difference between 12 bit and 14 bit files.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Then one has to qualify the "truth". Is it local or global?

    Any links to Sony's claim that is the case?
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 14th June 2016 at 21:21.

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    I have checked out he files using raw digger.

    I am on travel with just an iPad, so I cannot post any evidence of my own right now.

    But, you can check this info on DPReview: What difference does it make? Sony uncompressed Raw: Digital Photography Review

    Keep in mind that Sony A7 models operate in either 12 bit or 14 bit modes. AFAIK only single shot modes without Long Exposure Noise Reduction are actually 14 bits.

    That is relevant to some extent, as there is an observable difference between 12 bit and 14 bit files.

    Best regards
    Erik
    Silent shooting and bulb also drop you down to 12 bit on A7xII bodies

    RAW images recorded with this camera have a resolution of 14 bits per pixel. However, resolution is limited to 12 bits in the following shooting modes:
    [Long Exposure NR]
    [BULB]
    Continuous shooting (including continuous shooting in [Superior Auto] mode.)
    [Silent Shooting]
    http://helpguide.sony.net/ilc/1520/v...?search=Silent
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by pegelli View Post
    Sorry for continuing off topic, since it hasn't anything to do with the magnified focus view. However I thought they now provide lossless Raw for some of the newer A7 cams (A7ii and A7rii) with a firmware update, or wasn't it fully fixed?
    Is it any clearer as to the truth?

    (14 bit lossy)

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Hi,

    The truth is that you are spreading bad info...

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Is it any clearer as to the truth?

    (14 bit lossy)

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Thanks for correction!

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by mbroomfield View Post
    Silent shooting and bulb also drop you down to 12 bit on A7xII bodies

    RAW images recorded with this camera have a resolution of 14 bits per pixel. However, resolution is limited to 12 bits in the following shooting modes:
    [Long Exposure NR]
    [BULB]
    Continuous shooting (including continuous shooting in [Superior Auto] mode.)
    [Silent Shooting]
    http://helpguide.sony.net/ilc/1520/v...?search=Silent

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Is it any clearer as to the truth?

    (14 bit lossy)
    To be honest no. The only thing I do know is that according to DPR the artifacts that can be seen with the old format at high contrast edges are gone and that the raw digger histograms are much more dense vs. the old format. Practically that's all that's needed for carefree picture taking from my perspective.
    However I have difficulty understanding the term "lossy uncompressed". I'm not a digital or computer scientist, but I thought the 3 possibilities that exist are "uncompressed", "lossless compressed" and "lossy compressed". Can you explain for a layman what you exactly mean by "lossy uncompressed"?
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    The truth is that you are spreading bad info...

    Best regards
    Erik
    Time to withdraw from this "august" forum.

    Sony fanfoys who spread the "truth" for the win.

    Hope you with your 16bit lossless RAW and the Donald succeed!



    Quote Originally Posted by pegelli View Post
    To be honest no. The only thing I do know is that according to DPR the artifacts that can be seen with the old format at high contrast edges are gone and that the raw digger histograms are much more dense vs. the old format. Practically that's all that's needed for carefree picture taking from my perspective.
    However I have difficulty understanding the term "lossy uncompressed". I'm not a digital or computer scientist, but I thought the 3 possibilities that exist are "uncompressed", "lossless compressed" and "lossy compressed". Can you explain for a layman what you exactly mean by "lossy uncompressed"?
    Same answer to you as above. Good luck!

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    Senior Member pegelli's Avatar
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Time to withdraw from this "august" forum.

    Sony fanfoys who spread the "truth" for the win.

    Hope you and the Donald succeed!



    Same answer to you as above. Good luck!
    Vivek, I hope you care to answer my question above before leaving. At this moment I'm still genuinly confused

    I'm not a Sony fanboy, I'm only trying to understand the information you're providing.
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    Both A7rII and A7II have loss less raw in 16 bit files. That is fact. Truth may be confusing.

    Best regards
    Erik
    Da "truth", Pieter. Get what he is smoking so that the confusion goes away.

    It is a bloody shame that he did not include the RX1R II in that list. I could use that to promote my sale of that cam.

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    Senior Member pegelli's Avatar
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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Da "truth", Pieter. Get what he is smoking so that the confusion goes away.

    It is a bloody shame that he did not include the RX1R II in that list. I could use that to promote my sale of that cam.
    Well, that's not the source of my confusion, I'm mainly confused about the term "lossy uncompressed" that you mentioned. I tried searching some for that but didn't find anything usable, therefore my question to explain it a bit further.

    Btw, good luck with your equipment sales, I have too much already so am resisting to be tempted. On the other hand I hope you don't sell your RX1R II, since I like your shots with that very much.

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    ContaxT by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr

    Contax T: has a Titanium body (truth), the red shutter release button is real Ruby (truth), the Sonnar is real Carl Zeiss (debatable). It is not for sale.

    The "16bit lossless RAW" monster behind it is.

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Time to withdraw from this "august" forum.
    Yea!

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Yea!
    Looking forward to your current "decisive moment" work (pics and not claims) that is not spoiled by the shortcomings of the Sony gear you use.

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2


    Contax T: has a Titanium body (truth), the red shutter release button is real Ruby (truth), the Sonnar is real Carl Zeiss (debatable). It is not for sale.

    The "16bit lossless RAW" monster behind it is.
    Actually, the shutter release button is synthetic ruby. I had one, awesome camera.

    Joel

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Looking forward to your current "decisive moment" work (pics and not claims) that is not spoiled by the shortcomings of the Sony gear you use.
    So, I take it that you aren't leaving as promised

    Here's hoping you'll reconsider, and keep your word.

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    I have a list to ignore for a reason but at times I forget why i have some in that.

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    I have a list to ignore for a reason but at times I forget why i have some in that.
    So, in short, you can't keep your word.

    (BTW, couldn't care less who is on your ignore list … but it sounds like a blessing to me

    Now back to our regularly scheduled, friendly conversation, about using the magnifier function on an A7R-II …

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    Re: Useless (or very inferior at least) focus magnifier on A7R2

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post

    Now back to our regularly scheduled, friendly conversation, about using the magnifier function on an A7R-II …

    I was doing some nigthshots and light painting a weekend ago, the focus magnifier is just wonderful on the A7R II, thank you Sony for this feature allowing me to lock in a sharp manual focus in the darkness, a very USEFUL and SUPERIOR feature for those that have a clue on how to use it.
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