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Olympus OM-D E-M1 The first Micro Four Thirds camera that offers phase detect focusing so you can use Four Thirds DSLR lenses normally as well a Micro Four Thirds lenses.

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Old 13th September 2013
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Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

Last night at the e-group meet in London we had problems getting focus peaking to work with some Sigma Four Thirds lenses (from memory a 50-500 Bigma and a 150 Macro).

For some reason the standard focus peaking mode that works with Olympus lenses didn't seem to work with the Sigma lenses.

I don't have any Sigma lenses here but I do have a Four Thirds Panasonic Lumix L1 so I borrowed the Leica 14-50 f/3.8-5.6 kit lens off that. It worked normally with the focus-peaking mode that is selectable from the MF-Assist menu (which also includes the auto-magnify for critical focus option).

There is, however, a second way of using focus peaking and it's for manual focus legacy lenses of all types. Like many of the E-M1's additional modes you need to assign the mode to a function button. Last night I just couldn't find the focus peaking option in any of the button programming choices I tried. But near the end of the evening I think it was Simon Knee who pointed out that he had got it working.

This morning I had no problems at all finding the focus-peaking option to assign to any of the function buttons I tried so it's really weird that I couldn't last night!

Anyway, once assigned to function button that button becomes a toggle switch so press once for peaking on and again for it to be switched off. No matter what lens is fitted, as long as you can manually change focus with this version of peaking active, you can see where sharpest focus is highlighted in real time.

I haven't used the 50-500 and 150 Sigmas for a long time but I believe they have mechanically linked focusing rings so manual focus will work like a manual lens (please correct me if I am wrong) and so peaking should work.

Ian
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Old 13th September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

Good news, looking forward to using it with my Canon 400 plus 1.4x.

David
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Old 13th September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

I must admit I simply hadn't got around to using focus peaking, even with the E-P5 I have have had for a couple of months now although I had a brief play on the Panasonic GX7 last month.

Been playing with it this morning and it's certainly going to be useful. Works nicely with my 50mm f/1.4 OM Zuiko

Ian
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Old 13th September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

I can't claim credit. It was the the chap with an OM lens on a cheap wobbly adaptor...
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Old 13th September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

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Originally Posted by Ian View Post
I must admit I simply hadn't got around to using focus peaking, even with the E-P5 I have have had for a couple of months now although I had a brief play on the Panasonic GX7 last month.

Been playing with it this morning and it's certainly going to be useful. Works nicely with my 50mm f/1.4 OM Zuiko

Ian
I have the same lens - can't wait!

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Old 13th September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

Thanks Ian I have done a bit of googling as well and have studied the manual in a bit more depth. It seems that activating the focus peaking from the customised menu is not the same as assigning a button to it

On my E5 I set the front preview button for MF. The typical situation where I would use this is when there is a bird in the bush I would be in one of the AF modes so would use that to snap to the nearest twigg and then flip into MF. It would make sense to me for the camera, if focus peaking has been enabled in the custom menu for that to be sufficient to enable whatever lens you have on. To have to press another button to enable peaking does not seem right. I would suspect that this is a software bug and that the programmer forgot to link the settings.

Some very seasoned reviewers have misreported this very useful feature.
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OM-D E-M1, 12-40 f2.8 Pro, Tamron 14-150mm f5.8, E5, E3, Zuiko 50-200mm SWD, Zuiko 12-60mm SWD, Zuiko ED 70-300mm f5.6, 50mmf2, Zuiko ED 9-18mm f5.6, Sigma 50-500mm f6.3, EC14, EC20, RM-1, VA-1
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

You can leave focus peaking on all the time if you wish but it reduces the display refresh and I think it looks a bit unpleasant for extended periods.

I am still surprised that focus peaking doesn't seem to work with your Sigmas like it does with all other Four Thirds lenses I have tried. But they are not fly-by-wire or SWD lenses, so that may be the explanation.

There are of course two front buttons on the E-M1 and you could assign one to MF and the other to peaking and press them almost simultaneously.

Ian
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Old 13th September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

It still seems that there is some considerable uncertainty over how focus peaking works. The Sigma 50-500mm was a lens specifically built to work as an AF fully electronic lens with the FT body. On Thursday I believe that there were mFT pany lens that were unable to get peaking to work as they should. Oly needs to look at this.
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OM-D E-M1, 12-40 f2.8 Pro, Tamron 14-150mm f5.8, E5, E3, Zuiko 50-200mm SWD, Zuiko 12-60mm SWD, Zuiko ED 70-300mm f5.6, 50mmf2, Zuiko ED 9-18mm f5.6, Sigma 50-500mm f6.3, EC14, EC20, RM-1, VA-1
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Old 21st September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

My fears about focus peaking have been resolved.

I have been to LCE Colchester today with the said sigma and yes it does work. Claire Voyle from Olympus was there and had already mapped the focus peaking to one of the from functions buttons. Like the MF assist magnification feature the focus peaking only highlights while you turn the focus screw. It has occurred to me that a feature that might be useful would be if the highlighting was to be able to be switched on and off. A BIF could then be tracked and when the highlight comes up in the right place take the shot.
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OM-D E-M1, 12-40 f2.8 Pro, Tamron 14-150mm f5.8, E5, E3, Zuiko 50-200mm SWD, Zuiko 12-60mm SWD, Zuiko ED 70-300mm f5.6, 50mmf2, Zuiko ED 9-18mm f5.6, Sigma 50-500mm f6.3, EC14, EC20, RM-1, VA-1
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Old 21st September 2013
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Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

We're you the gent with the sigma. Who was before me- if so a pleasure to meet you

Tim
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Old 21st September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

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Originally Posted by timd1230 View Post
We're you the gent with the sigma. Who was before me- if so a pleasure to meet you

Tim
It was pleasure to meet with you also, did not know that there were that many Oly users round this neck of the woods.

Yes Tim sounds like me was there between 11am -12:30 ish.

You were the one with Zuiko 9-18mm ?

John
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Old 21st September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

no had the 50-200 and 150 f2 - think you were the gent who had the pics of the seagull in flight

Tim
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Old 21st September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

Yes I remember which one now. I was thrown because you said that I was before you when I think you came in before me but was not in a rush as you had an arsenal of lens to test. Thanks for that as found our conversations very useful.

John
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Old 21st September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

No problem john - think I was there about 2 hours in total - seriously impressed with the shop and staff - popped a piece in the dealer forum.

I found the focus tracking worked great for my purposes - spent about 20 mins tracking people walking down the lane - was even allowed out to play on my own with the camera.
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Old 21st September 2013
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Re: Focus peaking - problems hopefully solved! (E-P5 too?)

Someone want to explain what focus peaking is?
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