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Frustration!

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  • Frustration!

    As many on this Forum will know I sold my E5 and a couple 4/3 lenses to get a Canon 7D for bird photography, principally for birds in flight which the E5 just manages under ideal conditions and the E-M5 struggles with. Seeing as I also have an interest in landscape and macro, I have been carrying two cameras around with me which I am not prepared to do forever.

    The ideal solution and the only realistic one is for the promised forthcoming Olympus E-Mx to have the same CAF tracking ability as the various Phase difference AF SLRs on the market. I would also be nice if Olympus or Panasonic were to introduce a prime 300mm fast enough to use a TC on.

    In the meanwhile my frustration grows as I often go birding with just the Canon and then see a view/flower/bug I would love to photograph but only have the 400mm with me. So while the Olympus scenario above is my desire I am getting close now to considering the purchase of at least one additional Canon lens to give me the versatility I need. This would be a great shame as I don't want to abandon Olympus and I can't afford to have two outfits going at the same time for long. So whenever Olympus introduce the promised goods do folks think they will do the job for me and others with similar needs or is it a lost cause?

    For interest I find the IQ from the 7D to be about the same or slightly better than the E-M5 with the lens I am using but it is possible that several of the m4/3 prime lenses presently available may be better.

    David
    PBase Galleries:-http://www.pbase.com/davidmorisonimages

  • #2
    Re: Frustration!

    If you look at things from an "autofocus tracking birds in flight" point of view I think you're absolutely right to consider some more Canon lenses to use on your 7D body, and of course sell-off the troublesome second system.
    Me, I'd keep the e-M5 with some good lenses too, or you're just going to get that nagging urge to buy another one in a few months' time.
    Now, do you own the Lumix 20mm or mZuiko 45mm?
    Any decisions without those might be incomplete, and they are affordable.

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    • #3
      Re: Frustration!

      . . . to throw another possible spanner into the potential toolkit, have you researched the Pentax K30 series and lenses? I've handled one in the store - because it is the lightest, most compact weathersealed system going - and found it a mighty attractive possibility (note: I'm still resolutely holding out for the E-7). If I do end up getting serious about it, I'd probably rent one for a month or so along with a couple of their long lenses and put it through its paces . . .

      The other outstanding thing is that they are remarkably inexpensive compared to the Canikon oligopoly.

      John
      Founder and head idjit of the ancient and venerable Order of Photography Is Simple, Stupid

      Website @

      http://trihelic.net/

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      • #4
        Re: Frustration!

        I'll second the Pentax K-30. I bought one last week with the kit 18-55 weather resistant kit lens. I've since bought a 50-200 WR lens second hand. Build quality on the K-30 is really good and it feels right in my hands. Weight 590gms. ISO 25600 max but in reality 3200 - which is more than sufficient. Two control dials. Really good dynamic range and a whole range of K mount legacy lens you can use. Most telling of all it was one third of the price of an OM-D.
        A worrying thing from an Olympus point of view is that since buying the K-30 and joining the pentaxuser forum I've seen posts from 3 ex-Olympus 4/3 users who moved over due to lack of development activity on the 4/3s range. I'd hope that Olympus UK would take note.
        Jamie

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        • #5
          Re: Frustration!

          I posted a link awhile ago, to a post on the Olympus Forum on dpreview, where an ex Olympus owner stated that with the right settings, the E5 is superb at focus tracking a moving subject. I can't find my post, but IIRC you need to use a grip with freshly charged batteries and the 5 spot focus pattern and CAF. He claimed that with good light his 'keepers' were over 95%.

          Jim

          P.S. I've found the link - http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/th...-post-50099629

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          • #6
            Re: Frustration!

            Page 56 of the pdf E-5 manual ;
            Dynamic single-target AF mode.

            Cor blimey.
            Jim thanks for digging around and finding a link to the thread on DPReview, fascinating stuff.

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            • #7
              Re: Frustration!

              Originally posted by Ulfric M Douglas View Post
              Page 56 of the pdf E-5 manual ;
              Dynamic single-target AF mode.
              Also 'CAF Lock' to ON, contrary to most advice.

              The poster states that: "the E-5 was a superb tracking machine, my keeper rate was always around 95-100%."

              Jim

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              • #8
                Re: Frustration!

                Originally posted by jamie allan View Post
                I'll second the Pentax K-30. I bought one last week with the kit 18-55 weather resistant kit lens. I've since bought a 50-200 WR lens second hand. Build quality on the K-30 is really good and it feels right in my hands. Weight 590gms. ISO 25600 max but in reality 3200 - which is more than sufficient. Two control dials. Really good dynamic range and a whole range of K mount legacy lens you can use. Most telling of all it was one third of the price of an OM-D.
                A worrying thing from an Olympus point of view is that since buying the K-30 and joining the pentaxuser forum I've seen posts from 3 ex-Olympus 4/3 users who moved over due to lack of development activity on the 4/3s range. I'd hope that Olympus UK would take note.
                Another K-30 user here as well.
                Regards Paul.
                One day I hope to be the person my dogs think I am.

                https://www.flickr.com/photos/paul_silk/

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                • #9
                  Re: Frustration!

                  Originally posted by jamie allan View Post
                  A worrying thing from an Olympus point of view is that since buying the K-30 and joining the pentaxuser forum I've seen posts from 3 ex-Olympus 4/3 users who moved over due to lack of development activity on the 4/3s range
                  There are always people that have to have the latest - eg those that fret because they bought a new car last year and this year's model has a different style of wheel spokes!

                  Jim

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                  • #10
                    Re: Frustration!

                    Originally posted by Jim Ford View Post
                    There are always people that have to have the latest - eg those that fret because they bought a new car last year and this year's model has a different style of wheel spokes!

                    Jim
                    Jim,
                    I drive an 8 year old Mazda 3 with 130k miles on the clock and that does me fine. However the attraction of the K-30 or indeed todays Canon/Nikon/Sony enthusiast camera is that technology has moved on - particularly low light performance. The K-30 suits me particularly with a pentaprism OVF, high iso capabilities, water resistance and a relatively light weight. It's also more comfortable to hold - my personal view only - than the OM-D.
                    As an E-3 owner living in the wet west of Scotland I was looking to get something lighter and more portable but with the same water resistant qualities within a reasonable budget - hence the K-30.
                    Jamie

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                    • #11
                      Re: Frustration!

                      I must admit I've been looking at the Pentax K30 for many of the reasons outlined above. The reason I've not done anything about it is my concern about lens quality. I'd be surprised if the Olympus lenses were not better than the Pentax ones unless you spend piles of cash. Any comments from those who have made the jump. I should say that I used to have Canon gear and some of their lenses were less than stellar. My 17-85mm was shockingly bad at the edges no matter what the aperture. My brother gave me his copy of the same lens when he changed systems but before I could check if it was any better it broke down!

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                      • #12
                        Re: Frustration!

                        Greyhound,
                        I haven't seen any comparisons between Pentax and Olympus lenses. I did read a couple of reviews of the kit 18-55 before I bought the camera including dpreview of the original version of the lens and SLRgear of the new version. Both recommended it with SLRGear saying 'existing users of this lens who aren't ready or interested in upgrading should be reassured that they've got one of the better kit lenses on the market.'
                        So far as I can see the build quality is no different to the Olympus 4/3 kit lenses.
                        I've not handled any of the higher quality DA* lenses which appear to be similarly priced to the HG Olympus lenses. It's unlikely I'd buy this quality of lens as I'm looking for as lightweight a backpack as possible - that was a major factor in buying the camera.
                        Jamie

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Frustration!

                          In my general experience Pentax DA* lenses don't match Oly HG & SHG glass. One of the reasons I came back to Oly after a 2 year stint with Pentax.
                          I had a reasonable collection of Pentax glass which included the DA* 16-50 f/2.8 and DA* 60-250 f/4 and several primes which were nice. I found the 16-50 in particular a slightly frustrating lens because of the need to top down to sharpen the whole frame. The 60-250 was better, closer in performance to the 50-200.
                          Love the camera bodies though, nice kit overall.
                          Regards Huw


                          Olympus equipment
                          Capture One Pro
                          My flickr

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                          • #14
                            Re: Frustration!

                            We seemed to have drifted off the original subject which is I wish that Olympus would give me what the Canon does with regards to bird photography and I hold out great hopes that the forthcoming "Pro" offering will do the trick. I decided that, with Olympus, the m4/3 path was probably going to be the main effort from now on so I've sold most of my 4/3 kit, only retaining the 7-14, 14-150 and Lensbaby Scout added to my m75-300. I am not interested at this point in broadening the equation by adding a Pentax however good they maybe.

                            With regards to the BIF capabilities of the E5, I agree it could do a good job especially using the settings recommended in the Dpreview post which is basically what I did. But when you use it alongside the Canon 7D at the same time, on the same birds the difference is blinding - I was amazed. The main difference is not just in tracking but initial acquisition of the subject - and both cameras use phase difference! When we come to CDAF the situation is puzzling as the initial aquisition rarely seems to happen before the bird has gone, and I have tried every combination of settings. And by the way the example images shown in the DPreview of a jet fighter at close range isn't a valid demonstration of how a camera will perform with BIF - a large subject travelling towards the camera gives plenty of time for acquisition and is large enough to track easily - try this on a Wood pigeon that suddenly bursts from cover and fly fast and erratically against a cloudy sky, the Canon will acquire, track and knock of several shots before the Olympus E5 was able to lock on. And, with reference to several comments in the DPreview thread about the capabilities of older lenses, let us not forget that the Canon 400mm f5.6L is a 9 year old lens and the 7D is a 3 year old camera!

                            I had the advantage of trying the Canon outfit (my mate's) alongside my E5 with both 50-200mm SWD/EC14 and my 300mm f2.8 which is what forced me to make the decision to change. So please, please Olympus do the development that we know you can to correct this imbalance!

                            David
                            PBase Galleries:-http://www.pbase.com/davidmorisonimages

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                            • #15
                              Re: Frustration!

                              David have you seen Brian1208's thread Windsurf Action with the EM-5 + 75-300 in the OM-D forum http://e-group.uk.net/forum/showthread.php?t=24296 He gives some idea of what you can do with the OM-D and C-AF mode (with the 75-300mm lens). If you haven't seen it you might want to check it out, he has some impressive action shots, but does say he hasn't had the chance to test his new technique out on BIF yet...

                              James
                              James

                              OM-D E-M5 and lots of other things to to bash into it in the bag (usually a Billingham Hadley Pro)

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