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Focus peaking with M lenses


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Apologize for the newbie question, but I've had a hard time deciphering this through the manual:  I'm trying to get focus peaking to work with M lenses.  When I push the bottom left button, I can magnify through the viewfinder X10 and it works great....but I haven't been able to figure out the button to press to get the peaking function to work, when not magnified.  I have gone through the settings and enabled it.

 

Does anyone know the way to do this?  Thanks in advance.

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Thanks for getting back so quickly.  The strange thing is I don't get the peaking no matter how many times I press the bottom right button.  I get the histogram and then the grid lines, but never any peaking.  I turned on peaking in the Setup menus along with the other features that are working when I push that button.  I guess I haven't let it bother me too much because the magnified focus is so incredible.

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Two possibilities:

- The focus peaking screen is not included in your selected list of Info screen options. This list is a user setup option.

- You are looking for it in low contrast conditions. Test it outdoors in bright contrasty conditions or, indoors, look at a lamp shade. Sometimes it takes a few moments to become visible.

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On older and low contrast lenses, as Paul says, Focus Peaking does not happen. For example on my Hartblei 80mm Super Rotator T-S lens and my 1953 Leica 5cm Summitar, you have to stop down to at least f8 to get any peaking at all. If your M lens has deteriorated for any reason, fungus, oil on elements, element separation or extreme cleaning fogging, you may not get focus peaking. It is driven by the contrast detection engine on the sensor data dump. The other time you will not see peaking is if you are looking at a low contrast object (a grey cat on a foggy day). The highest contrast object for testing peaking is dark small tree branches against a bright sky. 

 

Wilson

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  • 1 month later...

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Just to 'bump' this thread up for new SL users. I have been trying to use focus peaking with older legacy lenses without success - until reading Wilson's explanation. Focus peaking does not work e.g. if focusing on plants behind the net curtain on the kitchen windowsill … or on subjects in low light conditions. But in same low light, low contrast conditions, my 23mm T lens used in manual focus mode will trigger focus peaking. So … if you're experiencing similar legacy lens focus peaking problems try again in sunny / bright light conditions - after making sure FP is fully enabled via the menus.

 

dunk

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Just to 'bump' this thread up for new SL users. I have been trying to use focus peaking with older legacy lenses without success - until reading Wilson's explanation. Focus peaking does not work e.g. if focusing on plants behind the net curtain on the kitchen windowsill … or on subjects in low light conditions. But in same low light, low contrast conditions, my 23mm T lens used in manual focus mode will trigger focus peaking. So … if you're experiencing similar legacy lens focus peaking problems try again in sunny / bright light conditions - after making sure FP is fully enabled via the menus.

 

dunk

 

 

Sometimes, just stopping down by one or two stops will push up the contrast enough that focus peaking works beautifully. I found this yesterday with the Telyt-R 250mm + 2x extender: wide open there was no indication at all, but set to f/8 it snapped on the peaking indication very nicely. It proved a useful way to check the focus after the camera re-stabilized (every time you touch a 500mm lens, it jiggles just enough to kill peaking...).

Edited by ramarren
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I was using the 80-200R last night at the eLuminate festival in the centre of Cambridge. Despite the light on the buildings, the overall light levels were low, but I still got the odd twinkle to confirm my manual focus. I was using f/4 to f/16.

Edited by LocalHero1953
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I was using the 80-200R last night at the eLuminate festival in the centre of Cambridge. Despite the light on the buildings, the overall light levels were low, but I still got the odd twinkle to confirm my manual focus. I was using f/4 to f/16.

 

Doesn't surprise me. The 80-200 is a high contrast lens. OTOH I have not found peaking accurate enough on the 80-200 at 200/f4 but image zoom and the SL's EVF is so good, you can easily fine tune with traditional focusing methods. Focus peaking is almost bright enough to be distracting on my Zeiss 28-85, another very high contrast lens. 

 

Wilson

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Two possibilities:

- The focus peaking screen is not included in your selected list of Info screen options. This list is a user setup option.

- You are looking for it in low contrast conditions. Test it outdoors in bright contrasty conditions or, indoors, look at a lamp shade. Sometimes it takes a few moments to become visible.

 

It took me some time to find the "right" screen where focus peaking is working, hope that the next firmware update provides a higher contrast with better visible peaking highlights.

 

However my question is:

Is there a way to get the grid view working in combination with the peaking function? As far as I can see you can either have the grid view or the focus peaking view, but not both combined... or did I miss something in the settings to achieve this?

 

Thanks

Daniel

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However my question is:

Is there a way to get the grid view working in combination with the peaking function? As far as I can see you can either have the grid view or the focus peaking view, but not both combined... or did I miss something in the settings to achieve this?

No

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Doesn't surprise me. The 80-200 is a high contrast lens. OTOH I have not found peaking accurate enough on the 80-200 at 200/f4 but image zoom and the SL's EVF is so good, you can easily fine tune with traditional focusing methods. Focus peaking is almost bright enough to be distracting on my Zeiss 28-85, another very high contrast lens. 

 

Wilson

 

Hello Wilson,

which adapter do you use with the Zeiss 28-85 lens ? And by the way, have you been on the Jurassic Coast ?

Stephan

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Hello Wilson,

which adapter do you use with the Zeiss 28-85 lens ? And by the way, have you been on the Jurassic Coast ?

Stephan

 

Stephan, 

 

I have two adapters, a no name cheapie CX/Y to M made in some back street in China, which is wrongly aligned (the top of the lens does not sit at the top) and has a fair bit of slop. The second is a beautifully made Novoflex LEM-CONT. Perfect alignment and no slop at all.

 

I have been on the Jurassic coast but the weather was not kind. Horrible flat light, rain most of the time and a strong wind. In the morning we were at Swanage Pier, playing around with lots of filters on the Lee 100mm system. The picture below is taken on a tripod with a -6 EV ND "little stopper", a graduated hard transition -0.6EV filter, and a landscape circular polariser. It is at f11, ISO 50 and 5 seconds exposure, to smooth out the sea. I was very impressed with the quality of the Lee kit. Way better made than my Cokin P kit, which is too narrow in any case for the e82mm thread 24-90 lens on the SL and even though I do have an 82mm Cokin P ring, causes vignetting. In the afternoon we went to Kimmeridge bay, which was pretty much a wash out for me. This boulder strewn beach is too difficult, given I have three prostheses in one leg and am scared of falling and breaking something, which would be extremely serious for me. The wind had got up to around force 8 and although the kite surfers were enjoying it, I wasn't. The light had got even worse as well. 

 

Wilson

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I've changed my peaking to wgite and I prefer that to the red default. I seem to be able to pick that out more easily. I have yet to try yellow but might do that today.

 

Try playing with the colours. It would be nice if there was an intensity setting available for lower contrast scenes. I've already written to leica about the desire to have peaking on other display views.

 

Gordon

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