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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 16th December 2014
TonyR TonyR is offline
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

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Originally Posted by Gwyver View Post
Tony,
I realise that your thread is specifically about C-AF....
However since I assume your objective is to capture images with reliable AF on moving objects I suspect your best option would be to use S-AF with Sequential Low drive mode @ 6.5fps (and a diamond AF pattern). In this mode the AF is active between frames. Once you have initial AF lock, given the relatively small movement of the bird the AF on second & subsequent frames will occur reliably.

I think what you've been describing is the general ineffectiveness of the C-AF feature and the new lens isn't going to change this issue.
Apologies in advance in case you find this observation unhelpful.
Chris,

All comments are welcome! I think you'll find that S-AF with sequential shooting only focuses before the first frame.
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Old 16th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

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Originally Posted by TonyR View Post
Yes, better than my efforts! 2nd, 3rd and 4th look good. I might try Focus Lock on High. Thanks for your feedback. Perhaps your birds were filling more of the frame than mine?
The first 2 ducks are in the same photo, the focus is on the lower one - so just 3 photos. They are 100% crops so you can see the ducks were a small part of the full image. The swans filled more of the image. Smaller birds further away and flying at speed are more of a challenge!

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Old 16th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

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Originally Posted by TonyR View Post
Chris,

All comments are welcome! I think you'll find that S-AF with sequential shooting only focuses before the first frame.
Sequential 'Lo' (using S-AF) actually focusses on each frame, even though it doesn't do any tracking it is up to the operator to point the camera at the subject & that is why Chris was suggesting it. Sequential 'Hi' only focusses (& takes a meter reading) on the first frame though.
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Old 16th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

Nice shots; like the fly by wire Swans!
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Old 17th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

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Originally Posted by Ross the fiddler View Post
Sequential 'Lo' (using S-AF) actually focusses on each frame, even though it doesn't do any tracking it is up to the operator to point the camera at the subject & that is why Chris was suggesting it. Sequential 'Hi' only focusses (& takes a meter reading) on the first frame though.
I'd be really interested if indeed this was the case but my understanding was that S-AF focuses when the shutter button is half pressed. C-AF in conjunction with Sequential Low shooting focuses between all frames unlike Sequential High which locks focus before the first frame.

A quick test of Sequential Low + S-AF seems to show this.

Or am I missing something?
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Old 17th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

I wonder if it's all down to settings and technique?

There was a post on dpreview a couple of years ago concerning CAF on the E5:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/50099629

Here's a snippet:

"I want to add that I also used briefly the E-5 with grip and the 50-200 SWD and it was the fastest AF performance I have ever saw. It was like lightning, a Nikon D3 with 70-200mm seemed very slow by comparison. The only combination I used that seems to compete is the Canon 1DX with the 70-200mm IS II. "

I would have expected the E1 to be considerably better than the E5.

Jim
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Old 17th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

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Originally Posted by Jim Ford View Post
I wonder if it's all down to settings and technique?

There was a post on dpreview a couple of years ago concerning CAF on the E5:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/50099629

Here's a snippet:

"I want to add that I also used briefly the E-5 with grip and the 50-200 SWD and it was the fastest AF performance I have ever saw. It was like lightning, a Nikon D3 with 70-200mm seemed very slow by comparison. The only combination I used that seems to compete is the Canon 1DX with the 70-200mm IS II. "

I would have expected the E1 to be considerably better than the E5.

Jim
Interesting Jim. I was struck by this comment from the same post which very much rhymes with what I found. Again, this was about the E-5.

"- Something that makes a hell of a difference: Wait for the camera to catch up with the subject before releasing the bursts. The camera takes some time from the moment you put your focus point on the subject and half press, starts tracking...to the moment it locks on the subject. Use the viewfinder and try to understand when the camera has caught up with the subject. It doesn't take long, and it's easy to do/see. Just be aware of this. IMPORTANT: If you release the bursts before the camera caught up, your sequence will be ruined."
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Old 17th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Ford View Post
I wonder if it's all down to settings and technique?

There was a post on dpreview a couple of years ago concerning CAF on the E5:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/50099629

Here's a snippet:

"I want to add that I also used briefly the E-5 with grip and the 50-200 SWD and it was the fastest AF performance I have ever saw. It was like lightning, a Nikon D3 with 70-200mm seemed very slow by comparison. The only combination I used that seems to compete is the Canon 1DX with the 70-200mm IS II. "

I would have expected the E1 to be considerably better than the E5.

Jim
Since the E1 was an early camera, it probably wouldn't be as good as the E5, but then, you were probably referring to the E-m1, which unlike the E5 that has twin cross type AF sensors, has only horizontal Phase Detection on the sensor. With that it wouldn't be as good with PD-AF & that I guess would be most noticeable for the more demanding C-AF(+Tr).
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Old 17th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Ford View Post
"I want to add that I also used briefly the E-5 with grip and the 50-200 SWD and it was the fastest AF performance I have ever saw. It was like lightning, a Nikon D3 with 70-200mm seemed very slow by comparison. The only combination I used that seems to compete is the Canon 1DX with the 70-200mm IS II. "
This isn't where the problem lies - it's continuous autofocus (with or without tracking) that we are talking about here. I think we all agree that AF acquisition performance of most static contrasty subjects is really excellent on the E5, E-M1 and indeed most of the rest.

A specific personal example: I have stood on the rise between Paddock Hill Bend and Druids at Brands Hatch in good light during DTM races in 2 years. In both cases I was using single centre-spot CAF, which gives the camera's processor the least work to do.

The first time was using my old Nikon D300 with 70-200 f2.8 VRII, with and without a 1.4 converter, on a monopod. Once the lens locked on to a car coming down the hill you could fire off a continuous burst at maximum speed until it shot behind the fencing and past you, and 95-100% were in focus as long as you kept the focus spot on the car.

The second time was with my E-M5 and both the 40-150 kit lens and the Panasonic 100-300. With both I managed about 20-25% tops in focus during the same bursts (although at lower speed so the 100-300 focusing could keep up).

Of course we are really talking now about one generation newer Olympus CSC body and either the 50-200 legacy lens or the new 40-150 f2.8, but there's quite a lot of mileage to catch up (and the D300 came out in 2007ish). I got plenty of nice images with the m4/3 kit, but there were just more to throw away, and the situation's more extreme with BIF (quite apart from my incompetence at that particularly difficult discipline!).
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Old 17th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

What's really hacking me off is that the 50-200 behaves in a better way for C-AF. It's just a bit slow on the E-M1. If Olympus had made the 40-150 with the 50-200's control system, I think we'd be ecstatic. But they seem to have reduced or eliminated the benefits of PDAF with the new lens.

What worries me more is that maybe these m43 lenses don't have the capability of being controlled like a 43 lens with PDAF. Maybe the bit of the control system in the lens is lacking an essential element that be used to make it work better and take more advantage of PDAF. If this were true, it would mean that future bodies would not be able to do much better. This bugs me a lot because Olympus developed the 40-150 in the full knowledge of the capabilities of the E-M1.

I have to say I am more than a bit miffed. I have been trying to make m43 work acceptably for a few years now due to the advantages of the smaller and lighter system, all along expecting some of the early performance issues to be resolved (I've had G2, G3 and E-M1, 14-42, 14-45, 45-200, 45-175, 100-300, and 12-40 lenses). The E-M1 and it's combined CDAF and PDAF seemed to offer that and I invested a lot of money in the system. I fully expected to acquire the 40-150 f/2.8 and the 300 f/4 and feel that I had finally got to where I wanted to be. But that appears not to be the case by quite a wide margin.

For the moment, I will be content to use the 40-150 for the purpose that I intended to use it for mainly which is butterflies, flowers, some landscape and portraits. It is not really long enough for most birding. But I shall not be rushing out to buy the 300 f/4 until I hear that it actually works, which I am beginning to doubt. It's getting too much of a struggle. I might as well just get a 7D Mk II and a new 100-400 and be happy .
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Old 17th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

You might feel that way Tony, but some might say, "What about other 'mirrorless' systems?", & they aren't likely to be any better either, or are they?
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Old 17th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

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Originally Posted by TonyR View Post
The E-M1 and it's combined CDAF and PDAF seemed to offer that and I invested a lot of money in the system. I fully expected to acquire the 40-150 f/2.8 and the 300 f/4 and feel that I had finally got to where I wanted to be. But that appears not to be the case by quite a wide margin.
I will be surprised if Olympus produce any other camera in the future which combines the two focus systems. My rather cynical brain said they had a problem of the E5, E3 etc owners who looked at the em5 and said it doesn't work with our very expensive lenses...give us an E7.

The em1 just got them out of that problem. It isn't going anywhere as a dual focus system (if it was then it would be in more cameras and lenses). The number of people using PD lenses will decline and once Olympus have a fuller range of CD lenses then they will say these are better.

Your experience shows that probably isn't true (and I for one believe your tests) but the truth isn't what drives them. I pointed out focus issues with the em1 which Olympus EU could and did replicate. But Olympus JP said I was wrong. So that was that (until they updated the firmware several months later to sort out non existent focus issues). Yes I am cynical but I have never bought another brand so I am also a customer and user. I just get sick of being fed expensive hype.

Good luck with the lens. It will do 90% of what they claim and you want.
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Old 18th December 2014
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40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

Dual focus system is the right way for CAF, Olympus must try harder with the routines on EM1 and all new bodies, Nikon 1 system works and focus very good with legacy lenses and is a dual focus solution.
CAF was never the fastest way to focus on all Olympus bodies, in 4-5 years evolution on m43 bodies they master CDAF technics and provide one of the fastest SAF focus system on the market, they have to work harder for the professional bodies as EM1 and pro lenses and solve all the problems where the standards rise up because many professional and advanced users want also more reliable CAF focus.
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Old 18th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

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Originally Posted by Ross the fiddler View Post
Since the E1 was an early camera, it probably wouldn't be as good as the E5, but then, you were probably referring to the E-m1.
Yes, sorry I meant the EM-1

Jim
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Old 18th December 2014
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Re: 40-150 f/2.8 Pro with C-AF

Isn't the predicted continuing rise in in-body processing power and speed going to offer improved CDAF and PDAF? If it's not powerful enough now, with the doubling period of computer processing power how much better should it be in 18 months? And another 18?
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