Any tips on autofocus and moving targets?

JohnN

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Aug 10, 2014
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Hi,

While I can't complain about the image quality of E-M10, but I really am having trouble capturing moving targets.
I understand that mirrorless cameras aren't quite there yet, but my experiments so far have left me with nothing usable, so I know I must be missing something.

Even on relativity passive subjects like ducks (on water, not even in flight) I found focus in C-AF would hunt horribly and C-AF with tracking was insane - it wandered around all over the place focusing on everything but the duck - I actually found myself laughing at one point it was so funny :)

Anyway I'm sure its not as bad as it seems so any tips would be greatly appreciated.

Ta,

John
 

robbie36

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To be honest, I find the best way to get decent results with moving targets is S-AF. The Olympus cameras lock single focus so fast that you normally get a decent rate of keepers this way.
 

kinlau

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Is there a way to set AF to just one point? Water is higher contrast than just about everything on a duck, so you want to have only a small area to focus on.

I was able to shoot flying Gannets with my GH2 and GH3, so it should be doable on the e-m10.
 

JohnN

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Cheers guys - yep there is a way to do single point, but it would be hard to keep it on it (well a duck wouldn't be but something more interesting would be).

So, ditch C-AF in all modes and just go with single point?
Oh just wondering do you guys tend to use the back screen or viewfinder?

BTW Rob, love your images :thumbup: and have you moved to Sony or just testing?
 

ThereAndBackAgain

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You may already have found this tweak and I don't pretend to be any kind of expert but FWIW I found a huge improvement since enabling the small focus point on my E-M5. Hope this helps.
David
 

JohnN

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Thanks David - I'll have a go.

Usually on my Canon I'd only use single point on stationary targets, swapping to 9 point for fast moving (or all points if theres no other distractions, such as a clear sky etc) - so this is all seeming very alien :)
 

sgt08

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I would also recommend S-AF unless you are looking for a burst of tracking shots on a moving subject, which is what I understand C-AF is for. For something "moving" but not incredibly fast, you will likely get better results with S-AF (single point or full grid) and just refocusing if you want to take multiple images.
 

Growltiger

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I use a single central focus point, S-AF, and high speed continuous. Fire multiple very short bursts.
Here is the proof it works - this is with the 75-300 lens set to 300mm and this gull was moving very fast.

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 

JohnN

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Aug 10, 2014
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Thanks for the tips - does seem that its 100% use single focus and let the fast AF do its thing - even looking at Olympus' site (here) even they seem to do it that way.

So, are you guys using the veiwfinder or touch screen?
 

kinlau

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Thanks David - I'll have a go.

Usually on my Canon I'd only use single point on stationary targets, swapping to 9 point for fast moving (or all points if theres no other distractions, such as a clear sky etc) - so this is all seeming very alien :)
I have a 1Dm2 and 7D, and I almost always shoot with a single AF point only, whether it's a perched bird or bif.
 

yakky

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For most fast moving stuff I like to use the touchscreen and S-AF in burst mode. C-TR is pretty bad as far as hit rate for me, the biggest issue is losing the target, not the actual focusing, though I have had a few times where it just refused to shoot (Focus priority on). That said, my M43 stuff quite a ways behind even a cheaper phase detect SLR for C-AF.
 
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