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Ian
12th September 2008, 02:21 PM
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/511/takeoff.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8156)

Seems to work OK for me :D

Ian

R MacE
12th September 2008, 02:39 PM
Doesn't it just, Great Shot t-up

StephenL
12th September 2008, 03:24 PM
Yes, good timing too.

Henk
12th September 2008, 05:14 PM
Ian,

Nice shot!

Care to share the settings?

Ian
12th September 2008, 06:07 PM
Ian,

Nice shot!

Care to share the settings?

Hi Henk, click on the image to go to its page on the site gallery and you can see the exif data there. I have cropped about half the frame off. It's part of a sequence taken in continuous shooting with continuous AF switched on, using the Zuiko 90-250, on a monopod.

Ian

theMusicMan
12th September 2008, 06:25 PM
Hi Henk, click on the image to go to its page on the site gallery and you can see the exif data there. I have cropped about half the frame off. It's part of a sequence taken in continuous shooting with continuous AF switched on, using the Zuiko 90-250, on a monopod.

Ian
Now that, is just plain cruel...:D

Ian
12th September 2008, 06:47 PM
Now that, is just plain cruel...:D

Aww, now you're making me feel bad :)

Here is the third frame from the sequence:

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/511/P9038428b.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8157)

Ian

Barr1e
12th September 2008, 06:56 PM
I could have done with that lens today - mind it was raining hard Aldbury way.

Two very nice pix Ian.

Regards. Barr1e

photo_owl
12th September 2008, 07:00 PM
just tell me you were in APAF to make my day!

Ian
12th September 2008, 07:05 PM
just tell me you were in APAF to make my day!


I looked 'APAF'up but all I came up with was 'Aircraft Procurement, Air Force' :):confused:

Ian

DerekW
12th September 2008, 07:44 PM
APAF

How about

All Points Auto Focus

as Oly US refer to it as meaning having the 11 points active.

Ian
12th September 2008, 08:16 PM
APF

How about

All Points Auto Focus

as Oly US refer to it as meaning having the 11 points active.

Ah! - OK :D

I was using the five centre points in the diamond arrangement.

Ian

photo_owl
12th September 2008, 09:00 PM
sry (sorry).....:rolleyes:

that's good enough to show that the camera once locked onto the subject in C-AF kept focusing on the same subject despite the subject moving to a different AF 'spot' or area.

well that's how I interpret the results you have.

I hope to shoot some falconry tomorrow and will be using similar settings and hoping for the best my cheap little 70-283/3.5-4.9 can deliver!

PeterD
13th September 2008, 06:47 AM
Great shots Ian. 5 point AF certainly works. APAF certainly does not but I can live with that for the time being.

The question I have is that Canon and Nikon seem to have APAF working also. What can be done to achieve this on Olympus E series cameras. I think the Canon has 48 point AF.

Peter

Ian
13th September 2008, 08:38 AM
sry (sorry).....:rolleyes:

that's good enough to show that the camera once locked onto the subject in C-AF kept focusing on the same subject despite the subject moving to a different AF 'spot' or area.

well that's how I interpret the results you have.

I hope to shoot some falconry tomorrow and will be using similar settings and hoping for the best my cheap little 70-283/3.5-4.9 can deliver!

The truth be said, the gull (is it a gull? - kind ornithologists, please correct me if I'm wrong!) was in the centre of the frame, but I have cropped for artistic effect.

Ian

photo_owl
13th September 2008, 08:12 PM
thanks for the honesty - back to formulating a test bed.

the local train station should do it perfectly..........

tlove
14th September 2008, 08:30 AM
I was using the five centre points in the diamond arrangement.
Ian

Note to self - go and read the manual :o:o!

I would certainly like to be able to take photos like that if I had that lens too :D:D

Lovely pictures Ian - the sort I can only aspire to, even with my kit :o:o!

Jim Ford
14th September 2008, 07:42 PM
Great shots Ian. 5 point AF certainly works. APAF certainly does not but I can live with that for the time being.

Is this true? I generally take images of static subjects and use single point and single focus.

Is it suggested that if I want to use continuous AF on a moving subject, it would be no good using all 11 points, but 5 points would be OK?

Jim

Zuiko
14th September 2008, 08:01 PM
Great shots by Ian, demonstating a terrific combination of optical excellence, professional quality camera technology and good old-fashioned photography skills with a perfect eye for timing!

Man and machine in pefect harmony - don't be fooled into thinking it was easy because of the lens. It still needed someone to aim it in the right direction and start the motordrive sequence at precisely the right moment! :)

Dick Bowman
15th September 2008, 07:03 AM
Is this true? I generally take images of static subjects and use single point and single focus.

Is it suggested that if I want to use continuous AF on a moving subject, it would be no good using all 11 points, but 5 points would be OK?

Jim

I'm puzzled that this seems so difficult for so many people...

The camera has no idea what you want to focus on - all it knows is that you are pointing "somewhere".

If you are using single point it tries to find the best focus within that area. If the area contains objects both near and far it may not be able to make a good choice.

If you are using multiple points it will either select one area where it can get good focus - or maybe (if we're lucky - or not) there's some sort of averaging. Clearly a subject against a busy background - which is at a different distance - is not a good candidate for multiple points (3 or 5 or 11 or whatever). But as the man from Olympus said a few days ago, with an isolated subject like a bird or aircraft against an even sky, if the camera is set to use multiple points it is able to select "the best", and this is good if the subject is moving around. Seems like common sense.

But - that said - I do think that here (and elsewhere) the camera manuals are not necessarily well-written.

PeterD
15th September 2008, 08:53 AM
I'm puzzled that this seems so difficult for so many people...

The camera has no idea what you want to focus on - all it knows is that you are pointing "somewhere".

If you are using single point it tries to find the best focus within that area. If the area contains objects both near and far it may not be able to make a good choice.

If you are using multiple points it will either select one area where it can get good focus - or maybe (if we're lucky - or not) there's some sort of averaging. Clearly a subject against a busy background - which is at a different distance - is not a good candidate for multiple points (3 or 5 or 11 or whatever). But as the man from Olympus said a few days ago, with an isolated subject like a bird or aircraft against an even sky, if the camera is set to use multiple points it is able to select "the best", and this is good if the subject is moving around. Seems like common sense.

But - that said - I do think that here (and elsewhere) the camera manuals are not necessarily well-written.

Taking an extract from Wrotniak under AF Mode
Focusing Mode

The choice here is between Single AF, Continuous AF, and Manual Focus (two more modes, S-AF+MF and C-AF+MF, use AF in conjunction with MF). Usually the selection will not be done from the menu, as the two other ways to do it (Control Panel, direct button) are more convenient.

Single AF makes a good default, as it works best in most cases, except for rapidly moving subjects, but then you can switch to Continuous AF as needed with an external control.


and again under AF Point Selection
On the first level, this menu entry allows you to choose between the full 11-point array (when the camera decides where to focus), a five-point cross pattern (referred to as Dynamic Point, just to make it harder to guess), and a single spot. Suit your preferences here; I've settled down on the cross, but many users prefer a single point as giving them most control, while some go for all points, a kind of snapshot mode.

and again under Continuous AF Lock
You are photographing a sports game, using the C-AF mode. From time to time someone a few feet in front of you gets up to bring himself a beer; your AF system is desperately trying to change the focus, then to change it back. This feature disables such an adjustment when the focus change would be large and sudden. I would keep it On, even if my experience in continuous AF is very limited, as I use it very rarely.



These descriptions are useful. For C-AF shots I use the 5 point and AF Lock settings. The background clutter may well be a problem in some shots but its not a case of point and shoot blindly. You ensure you get the focus first with the confirmation beep and that the target achieving focus is illuminated on the wanted subject. Then go ahead with the shutter release for as many shots as you want.
I had hoped that more people would have tried this when I first raised this rather than debating the pros and cons. There may be someone out there with additional information based on practise to squeeze the best out of this mode of operation. Come on, we are not paying for film, lets get out there and take some shots. You may be surprised and pleased with your results.

Peter

PeterD
15th September 2008, 09:06 AM
Is this true? I generally take images of static subjects and use single point and single focus.

Is it suggested that if I want to use continuous AF on a moving subject, it would be no good using all 11 points, but 5 points would be OK?

Jim

Jim,

When taking images of a moving object, the best option is to use the 5 point array. Why? - because its very difficult to get that centre spot directly on the subject unless its virtually on top of you. When panning a moving subject, I would defy anyone to keep the subject dead centre of the lens.

I have managed to get some great shots using single spot (small) S-AF but the dof and accuracy of targeting a subject makes it difficult. This is the reason for looking at C-AF again.

My experience tells me that the use of all targets is just not controllable and there is a greater tendancy for the camera to mis-focus. 5 Point is a very good compromise.

Peter

JohnGG
15th September 2008, 10:20 PM
I am still learning about C-AF with the E-3 and have had rather mixed results so far. I tried quite a few shots of gulls in flight during a holiday in Pembrokeshire this year but it was frustrating. For instance, I shot I sequence of 14 shots, with the E-3 + 50-200 SWD, of a gull as it flew along the cliff from left to right, turned towards me and then flew back along the cliff in the other direction. The 1st (cliff background) and 2nd (blue sky background) shots were oof even though the gull was close to centre-frame but the E-3 got focus on the 3rd and 4th shots; here is the 4th.

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P8146551.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8225)

The 5th, 6th and 7th are either just oof or possibly a combination of oof and camera shake (I was using IS2). The 8th is definitely oof as the camera has focussed beautifully on the cliff behind the bird :o

Focus was re-acquired on the 9th shot and all were in focus after that; here's the 11th and 14th.

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P8146558.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8227)

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P8146561.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8229)

I don't quite understand what Olympus Master is telling me about the EXIF on these shots. It says I used MF when I actually had AF+MF+C selected and I think I was using the centre 5-diamond AF points although Master says nothing on the subject that I can see :(

I am sure it is just a matter of practice and familiarity before I get the hang of C-AF. I felt that I was having better success on the Isle of Man with the motorcycle racing a few weeks later, a few shots from which I posted the other week.

All shots were processed using Master; levels, sharpening and cropped to use about 2/3rds of the image. Top image cropped to portrait orientation.

Cheers,

JohnGG

PeterD
16th September 2008, 12:03 AM
I am still learning about C-AF with the E-3 and have had rather mixed results so far. I tried quite a few shots of gulls in flight during a holiday in Pembrokeshire this year but it was frustrating. For instance, I shot I sequence of 14 shots, with the E-3 + 50-200 SWD, of a gull as it flew along the cliff from left to right, turned towards me and then flew back along the cliff in the other direction. The 1st (cliff background) and 2nd (blue sky background) shots were oof even though the gull was close to centre-frame but the E-3 got focus on the 3rd and 4th shots; here is the 4th.

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P8146551.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8225)

The 5th, 6th and 7th are either just oof or possibly a combination of oof and camera shake (I was using IS2). The 8th is definitely oof as the camera has focussed beautifully on the cliff behind the bird :o

Focus was re-acquired on the 9th shot and all were in focus after that; here's the 11th and 14th.

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P8146558.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8227)

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P8146561.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8229)

I don't quite understand what Olympus Master is telling me about the EXIF on these shots. It says I used MF when I actually had AF+MF+C selected and I think I was using the centre 5-diamond AF points although Master says nothing on the subject that I can see :(

I am sure it is just a matter of practice and familiarity before I get the hang of C-AF. I felt that I was having better success on the Isle of Man with the motorcycle racing a few weeks later, a few shots from which I posted the other week.

All shots were processed using Master; levels, sharpening and cropped to use about 2/3rds of the image. Top image cropped to portrait orientation.

Cheers,

JohnGG

Well done John. Its good to see your use of C-AF. A couple of things puzzle me though, were you really using AF+MF+C? and I do not think IS2 is a good setting. I keep IS1 active.

I took a series of shots today and I, like you, got mixed results. The subject was a flock of birds flying along the shoreline. Analysing the shoot I found that the focus point switched between the birds - not surprising really as they were close together and I might have lost a couple of frames due to reflections from the sea in the bright sunlight.

Tomorrow I am going to attempt a re-run with the aperture at f12 (was f8) and see if I can get sufficient dof for a flock of birds. Please let me know how you get on. It would be great to crack this once and for all. Single birds have proved to be pretty good but flocks - thats not so easy.

Peter

tlove
16th September 2008, 05:11 PM
Whether I should or not, I use C-AF when photographing birds in flight :o.

Birds in flight are a really difficult thing to capture anyway, as they move pretty fast, and go from cluttered to clear background in the blink of an eye (or should that be shutter?:D). I always take loads of 'duffers' before I get anything remotely usable, but it's always pleasing when I do.

I also normally use IS1 when taking birds in flight, but recently decided to try IS2 for this subject, and it seemed to work quite well for me. Perhaps I just got lucky this time, but here's my effort using C-AF and IS2:

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/506/Othello.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8247)

Thanks for looking

PeterD
16th September 2008, 06:13 PM
Whether I should or not, I use C-AF when photographing birds in flight :o.

Birds in flight are a really difficult thing to capture anyway, as they move pretty fast, and go from cluttered to clear background in the blink of an eye (or should that be shutter?:D). I always take loads of 'duffers' before I get anything remotely usable, but it's always pleasing when I do.

I also normally use IS1 when taking birds in flight, but recently decided to try IS2 for this subject, and it seemed to work quite well for me. Perhaps I just got lucky this time, but here's my effort using C-AF and IS2:

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/506/Othello.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8247)

Thanks for looking

Well done Thea. Great shot.

I think that some of us are still stuck in the days when we had to purchase film for our cameras and expect 100% success with our shoots. You have summed the situation up precisely when describing shooting birds in flight. It was the reasons that you give that I started out again with C-AF. If you lived through the times we early purchasers of the E3 had when focussing was a major issue you would understand why it is that we had been reluctant to use anything but S-AF.
That said, looking at it logically, its the only way to get that special shot by taking a series of C-AF images and examining them to select the best. Single shot S-AF is just like a roll of the dice - have you timed it well and has the camera captured the moment you intended. Some things happen so quickly that you do not get a chance to react.
I did not manage to get a flock of birds in flight but did manage to capture a herring gull fishing and eating its catch. I shall post some frames later.

Peter

tlove
16th September 2008, 06:39 PM
Thanks Peter

When it comes to focusing, my main problem is my 50-200mm lens (which this picture was taken with, which makes it even more amazing :D).

For birds in flight I use not only C-AF and IS1 (or 2), but I also set the camera to sequential shooting (high). Even so, when I press that shutter, I don't know if the lens is going to 'play ball', or decide to go hunting again (I lose more shots that way :(). It's just one of the limitations of my kit - particularly if there is not enough contrast for the lens to latch on to.

Then, if all goes well I can get some shots (my husband is usually highly amused - says I look like a crazed gunner, frantically following these birds round the sky :o:o:o. I beg to disagree :D). Rather than rattle off loads of shots, I usually fire off short sequences, which also gives the images time to clear the buffer (I shoot in RAW).

My methods probably go against all the 'rules' of photography, and yes, in reality you should make each shot count, but subjects such as birds in flight are difficult to achieve. I also take the view that the beauty of digital photography is that you do have the luxury of taking enough shots so that you do get something you're happy with without wasting a lot of hard earned dosh on film!

andym
16th September 2008, 06:59 PM
I've only played about with C-AF once or twice but must do again.

I have a question to you all who have been doing this type of photography,how do you have the C-AF lock set(wrench A)?Does it make any difference?
The manual seems to say that if anything passes in front or behind the camera should maintain focus on the subject.
I think the default is off.

Sorry if this has been covered before.

PeterD
16th September 2008, 07:01 PM
Thanks Peter

When it comes to focusing, my main problem is my 50-200mm lens (which this picture was taken with, which makes it even more amazing :D).

For birds in flight I use not only C-AF and IS1 (or 2), but I also set the camera to sequential shooting (high). Even so, when I press that shutter, I don't know if the lens is going to 'play ball', or decide to go hunting again (I lose more shots that way :(). It's just one of the limitations of my kit - particularly if there is not enough contrast for the lens to latch on to.

Then, if all goes well I can get some shots (my husband is usually highly amused - says I look like a crazed gunner, frantically following these birds round the sky :o:o:o. I beg to disagree :D). Rather than rattle off loads of shots, I usually fire off short sequences, which also gives the images time to clear the buffer (I shoot in RAW).

My methods probably go against all the 'rules' of photography, and yes, in reality you should make each shot count, but subjects such as birds in flight are difficult to achieve. I also take the view that the beauty of digital photography is that you do have the luxury of taking enough shots so that you do get something you're happy with without wasting a lot of hard earned dosh on film!

No Thea, you are not going against the grain. In fact its the short burst technique that I am adopting. One question though - what af target scheme are you using? I have a couple more but first I thought I would ask this one.

Peter

PeterD
16th September 2008, 07:07 PM
I've only played about with C-AF once or twice but must do again.

I have a question to you all who have been doing this type of photography,how do you have the C-AF lock set(wrench A)?Does it make any difference?
The manual seems to say that if anything passes in front or behind the camera should maintain focus on the subject.
I think the default is off.

Sorry if this has been covered before.

Andy,

I set this to ON. It seems to work as you pan. I have included extracts from the Wrotniak website which I think pertain to this type of shooting in an earlier post in this thread. The choice IS 0,1 or 2 I have not decided on yet. Feedback from others may help me decide.

Peter

tlove
16th September 2008, 07:23 PM
No Thea, you are not going against the grain. In fact its the short burst technique that I am adopting. One question though - what af target scheme are you using? I have a couple more but first I thought I would ask this one.

Peter

I sense myself walking into some trouble here tee hee :D:D:D!

I must admit that I usually use the centre spot myself. I sometimes use the diamond selection, more rarely all points. Centre spot works for me because I have found that some of my focusing difficulties occur when I use either of the other two settings.

I have to say that I too am still very much experimenting with different methods, still trying to find one that works. What I am finding, though is that there seems to be no one way that works for all occasions!

tlove
16th September 2008, 07:48 PM
Hopefully I won't get shot, or worse barred :eek::eek: for doing this, but this video from the PhotoAnswers website was what got me started on my wildlife photography technique:

http://www.photoanswers.co.uk/Video-Tutorials/Search-Results/Camera-Techniques/Chris-Weston-Bird-Photography-Workshop/?&R=EPI-1658

It lasts approx. 10 minutes and Chris Weston gives (I thought) some pretty useful information on setting up and taking photos of wildlife. Although done at a bird of prey centre, the information can be applied to all aspects of bird photography. I found it very useful as it got me going on using C-AF etc.

Cheers

PeterD
16th September 2008, 08:36 PM
I sense myself walking into some trouble here tee hee :D:D:D!

I must admit that I usually use the centre spot myself. I sometimes use the diamond selection, more rarely all points. Centre spot works for me because I have found that some of my focusing difficulties occur when I use either of the other two settings.

I have to say that I too am still very much experimenting with different methods, still trying to find one that works. What I am finding, though is that there seems to be no one way that works for all occasions!

I have found more success with the centre cross. The reason for this is that I am using a Bigma and the total weight is such that to accurately position the bird at the centre spot is difficult:eek: when hand holding.

Hopefully I won't get shot, or worse barred :eek::eek: for doing this, but this video from the PhotoAnswers website was what got me started on my wildlife photography technique:

http://www.photoanswers.co.uk/Video-Tutorials/Search-Results/Camera-Techniques/Chris-Weston-Bird-Photography-Workshop/?&R=EPI-1658

It lasts approx. 10 minutes and Chris Weston gives (I thought) some pretty useful information on setting up and taking photos of wildlife. Although done at a bird of prey centre, the information can be applied to all aspects of bird photography. I found it very useful as it got me going on using C-AF etc.

Cheers

The video was excellant. Thanks for posting it*chr.

The only time that IS is switched off was when taking shots on a tripod. This makes sense from my experiments although I do not use a tripod myself. The camera/lens in use did not seem to have an option to switch off ISO in one of the planes (ie IS 2). Now this is an area that is worthy of further dicussion. So, to sum it all up. Thank you Thea for posting your comments and the link. You are doing far more in bringing out the conversation regarding C-AF so please do not feel you are out of step. You definately are not. This is the sort of topic we older hands used to discuss in depth and its great to see this happening again.

Well done and thank you.

Peter

art frames
17th September 2008, 08:14 AM
Hopefully I won't get shot, or worse barred :eek::eek: for doing this, but this video from the PhotoAnswers website was what got me started on my wildlife photography technique:

http://www.photoanswers.co.uk/Video-Tutorials/Search-Results/Camera-Techniques/Chris-Weston-Bird-Photography-Workshop/?&R=EPI-1658

It lasts approx. 10 minutes and Chris Weston gives (I thought) some pretty useful information on setting up and taking photos of wildlife. Although done at a bird of prey centre, the information can be applied to all aspects of bird photography. I found it very useful as it got me going on using C-AF etc.

Cheers

Thea

thanks for posting this. It was very useful. Lots of insight and good to watch.

Peter

PeterD
21st September 2008, 06:38 AM
I went out on a shoot with PeterL Saturday afternoon and took a series of C-AF images of Swallows in flight over the lake at the Water treatment plant, Southmoor.

I chose the swallows as they are fast fliers and at about 100yds distant, very small and difficult targets to track. This I thought would be a good test of the C-AF (and of course the lens and camera). I have posted one image in the gallery and re-produced it below. I have put the settings used in the photo description for those who are interested. In this sequence, I took a burst of 6 shots with two failures but the rest were clear. I have selected this image as it not only demonstrates the clarity of the bird but also the clarity of the reflection in the water.

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/506/Swallow_-_Hirundo_rustica-.jpg

Using any other shooting method would have failed to capture anything and offer this to encourage others to use this mode.

PeterD

theMusicMan
21st September 2008, 07:04 AM
Nice clear image there Peter, you have shown very clearly that the C-AF mode works well.

PeterD
21st September 2008, 07:11 AM
Thanks John. The important thing with C-AF is that you must first lock onto the target with a half press on the shutter BEFORE taking a burst of shots.

Peter

theMusicMan
21st September 2008, 07:13 AM
OK, thanks. I must try out C-AF on some subjects.

Please remind me Peter, do you use the diamond or 11-point auto focus mechanism when on C-AF...? I appreciate you may have mentioned them in threads/posts on here, but so as they are to hand, what other settings should I consider for a trial of this mode...?

PeterD
21st September 2008, 07:31 AM
OK, thanks. I must try out C-AF on some subjects.

Please remind me Peter, do you use the diamond or 11-point auto focus mechanism when on C-AF...? I appreciate you may have mentioned them in threads/posts on here, but so as they are to hand, what other settings should I consider for a trial of this mode...?

John,

The 11 point target mode has never worked properly for me - YET - but the 5 point , or cross, is what I am currently using.

The reason I have settled for 5 point is as follows:
To shoot wildlife moving objects requires hand held shots as you need full freedom to follow the subject.
When using a long focal length lens the angle of view is very tight and it would be imposible to track a subject on the centre target alone. Using 5 targets increases your chances of keeping the subject within the target area and hence maintaing focus during the burst of frames. 11 targets is just too large an area when covering a small subject and the AF may pull off and be attracted to another unwanted object. I am working on this at the moment.

Other things to consider:
Make sure your AF is not pulled by sudden changes in focus (see Wrotniak article). I keep this as a permanent setting.
Study the subject before shooting, even doing a trial track first.
I keep IS1 mode on as my shots are hand held and I have never had a problem with this setting.

Hope this helps.

Its good light today and a good opportunity to give it a trial.

Peter