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Old 6th April 2018
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Wing flutter or DOF???



My first butterfly photo this year, a beautiful Peacock................

Either wing flutter of DOF issue. Photo taken with Panasonic 100-400mm @400mm, 1/400th sec and F6.3. I used Auto Focus on the head, about 6+ foot shot.

Perhaps the Auto focus did not have enough to focus on properly.

So disappointed in the output, looked great on the camera screen.....
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Old 6th April 2018
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Re: Wing flitter or DOF

I think you probably needed F11 or maybe F16.

Jim
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Old 6th April 2018
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Re: Wing flitter or DOF

At 6ft the DOF is minuscule. But overall the focus does seem a little soft so perhaps it hadn't settled down like you say.
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Old 6th April 2018
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Re: Wing flitter or DOF

How close was the axial node to the butterfly?

400mm (800mm in £SD) at f6.3 would provide wafer thin DoF if the distance between you and your prey was no more than a few metres. f16 would offer improved DoF (remember 1/3 in front and 2/3 behind the focus plain) but only if you like diffraction, eg performing a physics experiment. f64 would be much better for both DoF and the experiment if you were a science teacher.

Why shoot with a safari lens for subject matter such as this. Wouldn't you be better with the Oly 60mm macro?

Edit: Just read you said 6' away.
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Re: Wing flitter or DOF

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricoh View Post
How close was the axial node to the butterfly?

400mm (800mm in £SD) at f6.3 would provide wafer thin DoF if the distance between you and your prey was no more than a few metres. f16 would offer improved DoF (remember 1/3 in front and 2/3 behind the focus plain) but only if you like diffraction, eg performing a physics experiment. f64 would be much better for both DoF and the experiment if you were a science teacher.

Why shoot with a safari lens for subject matter such as this. Wouldn't you be better with the Oly 60mm macro?

Edit: Just read you said 6' away.
Alas my modus operandi is to only carry Panasonic 100-400mm for birding. Flaw is that when you see something closer, I ain't got the lens to suit. I do have the Olympus 40-150mm Pro, with the 1.4TC, that would have been a better lens to use I guess.

So I think you are all right, its DOF problem. And secondly my M/O, but I do like to walk without clutter and weight............

Thanks for opinons............
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Re: Wing flitter or DOF

Carry the lens you want and shoot whatever you want with it - thats the route to happy photography. In this case I think it is depth of field as you are off the centre axis and one wing is further away than the other.
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Old 6th April 2018
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Re: Wing flutter or DOF???

Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ224 View Post
My first butterfly photo this year, a beautiful Peacock...............so disappointed in the output, looked great on the camera screen
I took my first butterflies this year yesterday, also using the 100-400 lens. Spring butterflies are usually very flighty and almost impossible to approach with a shorter lens, such as a macro.

I would say that yours is mainly a DOF problem. My advice is to get as near as you can to a square-on view, when photographing a butterfly with spread wings, and don't use an aperture wider than f/8 but preferably f/11 or even smaller. DOF is very shallow indeed, when using a long lens at fairly short range.

As Ricoh mentioned, it's worth remembering that there's always more DOF behind the point of sharpest focus than in front, so it's always worth 'bracketing' the focus to get the optimum spread across the subject. The foreground in your photo looks very sharp and I would have chosen a point near the head for the central focus point. When in doubt, go for the eyes! Even a high-res screen is inadequate for judging critical focus.

I hope you will get more opportunities for good shots soon.
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Last edited by MikeOxon; 6th April 2018 at 06:27 PM. Reason: incorrect statement
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Re: Wing flitter or DOF

I almost commented first but decided I was too novice. But glad to see the consensus is what I guessed. the right antenna looks pretty sharp, and parts of the underlying rock. DoF of a 400mm lens at 2m distance is tiny. Narrower aperture would help. Being square on would help, so that the plane of the sensor is near parallel to the main parts of the subject.

((What I didn't know until now is that diffraction is less of a problem with long focal lengths. ** )) I tend normally to try to for apertures between 1 stop from the widest to about f/7.1 for any lens. But perhaps f/11 or more is okay .

** Edited to remove misapprehension
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Re: Wing flitter or DOF

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobEW View Post
What I didn't know until now is that diffraction is less of a problem with long focal lengths.
I'm afraid I misled you Rob. my apologies.
Although the aperture is larger for the long lens, the magnification is also higher. The diffraction limit therefore depends solely on the f/number and the sensor size.

There's a good article and calculator on the website at https://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tu...hotography.htm

In practice, however, results are usually acceptable, at least as small as f/11, unless you are pixel peeping on a high-resolution sensor (>16MP). I've removed the incorrect statement from my initial post.
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Re: Wing flitter or DOF

Thanks for clarifying, and for link to useful article.
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Old 7th April 2018
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Re: Wing flitter or DOF

I also like to carry just one lens when birding, but also take other subjects when I can.

At 400mm I try to stand back and use F9 or F11 and then crop the subject in post.
This comma was taken at just under 5 metres. Normally I would try and get a bit closer.



If I'm much closer, then I just zoom back to 300mm or 200mm to gain some depth of field. This sensor is so good that I'm not afraid to crop.



Both images are not processed, they are only displayed to make the point about distance and cropping.
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Re: Wing flitter or DOF

It must be dof.

My app at 7’, 400mm and f6.3 gives around 0.2” in front and behind the point of focus on a m4/3 body.

F8 gives around 0.25” and f11 around 0.35” fore and aft.

As a generalisation, the better m4/3 lenses on test have held on to decent resolution a bit more stopped down than the cheaper ones, so although I try to stay at a max of f8, in fact diffraction is probably invisible often below f11 in real life, as already said.

With the Oly 300 I try to keep in my mind for ‘macro’ shots of insects around that sort of subject distance that at f8 the dof is around an inch, and just over half an inch with the 1.4 converter added. They reduce by about a third at f5.6. That’s just a very rough but memorable guide.
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