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A personal review of the MC 20

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  • A personal review of the MC 20

    A quick review having been out yesterday early evening with drmarkf to a small reserve he introduced me to last night!

    Mark wanted to test out the focussing algorithms in the recent firmware release and I wanted to test the MC-20 which had arrived earlier that day.

    MC-20 is as expected very similar but slightly bulkier than the MC-14, and gives 2x magnification of the image, so when combined with the 300 f4 lens give a 600 f8 lens. I did find that the small increase in overall length of the whole system did change the balance slightly and found I had to revise my grip on the lens slightly to a more "industrial" or firmer grip.

    In use last night in dull conditions I found that the system definitely focusses slower than with the lens alone or the lens and MC14 combination, mainly because of the drop in available light while focussing, due of course to the revised minimum f stop value of f8, the focussing hunts a little as well. It is also more difficult to ensure the focus is locked onto the correct element of the subject, which can be a tad frustrating.

    We walked past a field that had its margins returned to wild/native flowers and took several close focus photos, the MC20 definitely allowed me to get in amongst the bees and butterflies from a slightly greater distance than Mark was managing with his 300 f4 and MC14 set up, the results from this work were a revelation and I will add a few images to the insects photo thread.

    We moved on to some ponds with dragonflies skimming around, and as I struggle to follow these with the 300 f4 sans converter I expected to struggle a lot with the MC 20 fitted. I am pleased to say I got on far better than I expected, but the results I got last night are nothing to shout about as the light was not on our side, but it did manage a few photos that I think the previous firmware would not have got and the EM 1 mki definitely would not have got with the lens alone, again I'll put a couple into the insect thread.

    So having progressed from the EM 1 mki through to the EM 1 mkii and through to the latest firmware I am very happy with the converter but feel it will only be used in bright conditions or special occasions.
    I didn’t get where I am today....