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Old 3rd November 2008
michaelavis michaelavis is offline
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Re: 50-200mm NON SWD V's SWD Versions

I'm hoping to be fortunate enough to be considering the 50-200mm non-SWD v SWD question very soon and was wondering if you guys had some specific guidance for my relatively specific consundrum, especially as this thread hasn't had any action for a while, there might be some more experiences to share.

Im an E520 user with the Oly 14-42/14-54/18-180/70-300mm lenses and FL-36R. It's great, although the Nikon D90 and Canon 50D specs did force me to go round the reasons I bought into Olympus & 4/3rds which for me still hold true for price/performance, especially on the optics.

Outdoor sport probably makes up 50% of my photography and using the E520/70-300mm combo I get pleasing shots of my children and their teamates in Rubgy, Hockey and Cricket. As I've become more demanding, I know Im also missing opportunities through "hunting" or slow focussing, especially on gloomy days, not having faster continuous shooting and having to put the camera away in poor weather. I bought what I have with much more of a general purpose intention.

I wish I had more reach sometimes, often the most pleasing shots are right in amongst the action, the facial expressions are fantastic and not seen from the touchline and can occur the other end of a playing field to where you are at the time. Filling a frame with the expression of a batsman or bowler in the middle cricket pitch would be great for example. However, I would put this aside for now, I think getting over 300mm will have to wait.

I have decided to take the plunge into the world of an E-3 and very likely a 50-200/EC-14 combo to address the speed & weather aspects of increasing my chances of producing more "keepers". Having played with an E-3, the brighter/larger viewfinder, multiple focussing points and articulating LCD are all to the good too. I could offset some of the cost through selling the 70-300mm, but would be reluctant to see the E520 go as with the 18-180 its a great walkabout for taking anywhere all day.

Cost and appropriate price/performance is the big issue to me. Im not expert enough to need the ultimate in equipment performance, but I would like a significant step up compared to my E520/70-300mm when trying to capture sharp action shots in a variety of conditions, including gloomy and wet conditions.

If the "old" 50-200 would do a great job in combo with the EC-14 then I'd be pleased to find one rather than pay for overkill, but if I'd forever be thinking that the SWD version would have been another significant step up for this kind of use I would forever wish I'd found the extra money.

Any views or experience of this area would be appreciated!
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