Anyone use the built in digital teleconverter?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by Gary Ramey, May 1, 2013.

  1. Gary Ramey

    Gary Ramey Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 27, 2012
    Aurora Colorado
    I've actually heard it does more than just crop through software and the results this guy showed were quite Impressive. I'd be interested to know if it works with manual/adapted lenses as well as native
  2. Crdome

    Crdome Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Sep 11, 2011
    West Central Indiana
    Real Name:
    It will work with any lens. You will get degradation of image quality on all.
  3. Henk

    Henk Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 18, 2010
    the Netherlands
    I recently tried this in video with some Olympus OM adapted lenses on the GX1 and it works great. Of course the quality also depends on the quality of the lens used. It's fun!

    Personally I wouldn't use it for stills as I shoot raw and cropping in post is a lot more convenient.
  4. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    For video, sure. For stills? Rather crop in post.
  5. janneman

    janneman Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 6, 2012
    Real Name:
    Jan (John) Kusters
    I usually shoot in RAW+JPEG. I do use the digital converter of the E-M5 quite regular for stills. I am mostly a prime shooter and often only carry two lenses (12 and 45mm).

    With RAW+JPEG, you get both; the JPEG will show the digital teleconverter, but the RAW is the full picture (at least when I open it in Photoshop). It allows me to use the digital tele if I don't want to spend too much time on PP, but also allows me to try and get it better with cropping in PP.
    As for what is better, I can't say yet. Most of the time I struggle to get notably better results from the cropped RAW (with the digital teleconverter, with normal pictures I manage to best the JPEG's with ease). So the way Oly handles the digital converter is quite good.

    Quality in general? Cropping down to 50%, whether it is done in-camera or in PP, is going to show degradation in IQ, but it is not dramatic, and unvisible in smaller prints. In large prints or 100% on screen it is quite noticeable.

    I am not sure an optical teleconverter would do much better or worse. Back when I used an optical teleconverter on medium format film, it was unnoticeable, even in large prints. Back then, the -not cheap- teleconverter was a relatively small sized great addition to a set of 3 primes. I am still trying to figure out whether M43 needs an optical teleconverter, and whether that would be as good as it once was in medium format. Together with the 12, 45 and 75mm, it would make a great set from shooting point of view (although 12, 45 and 150 would be even better).
  6. Gary Ramey

    Gary Ramey Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 27, 2012
    Aurora Colorado
    Janneman, Thanks. I'm in the middle of that epic struggle of reach (I want something 400mm or better) and size. I just sold a 150-500 Tokina...not because it wasn't a good lens, but more because the weight was just too much to lug around. So I'm back to entertaining buying the 43 EC20 to put on my 43 50-200 f2.8-3.5 lens. Its a nice lens and I use it all the time with my 1.4TC now. Just wanted a little more reach. The other frustrating part is I always end up manual focusing this lens for a more precise photo at those lengths. It doesn't AF well, IMO. Anyway, thanks. I was wondering whether there was much degradation in the DTC.
  7. dwig

    dwig Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 26, 2010
    Key West FL

    If you are a JPEG shooter there is some advantage to using the "digital zoom" since that will do the cropping before the camera generates the lossy JPEG file. This saves opening the JPEG to crop in post and then regenerating another JPEG with the increase in IQ loss from the second JPEG generation. RAW shooters, of course, can't use the feature but are better served by cropping in post where there's more control of the amount of crop.
  8. manypix

    manypix Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 21, 2013
    Portland, OR, USA

    I use this for video on the OM-D, with a tiny C-mount 16mm Pentax/Cosmicar lens. Quality of video with the TC is good. This particular lens vignettes horribly without use of the TC, but with it is a cheap, decent quality and very little lens. And it weighs only about 30g.


  9. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Real Name:
    As others have DTC doesn't achieve anything that can't be done in post simply by cropping and upsampling. Frankly, I'd expect you to get better results that way, simply because the upsampling and sharpening algorithms are generally much better in modern software than in camera ASICs.

    If 600mm EFL is too short for you, you might also give the Nikon 1 series a try. The cameras aren't anything special, but with an adapter, you can get a lot of reach, quite cheaply. You can even get AF on F mount lenses with built-in AF motors like the Nikon 300/4 (810mm EFL).
  10. Liamness

    Liamness Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 20, 2011
    I'm curious, are their any camera bodies that allow you to assign teleconversion to a function button, then switch between zoomed and normal shooting while filming?
  11. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    You can assign the TC to a function button on the E-M5, although I'm not sure whether it will switch while you're actually filming.
  12. Gary Ramey

    Gary Ramey Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 27, 2012
    Aurora Colorado
    Thanks....I'm currently trying to decide between an EC20 to go with my 50-200 4/3 lens or just go with the 75-300 II u4/3. The only other 2 lenses on my radar are a manual canon 300mm L series or Nikon 300mm F4 also manual. However, I'm just not sure what combination gives me the best IQ.
  13. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    This is not exactly true. Using the in camera TC maintains the pixel pitch. Cropping in post increases the space between the pixels as well as the pixels themselves.

    That said, the effect is more theoretical than practical.
  14. Haans

    Haans Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 18, 2012
    I have found the 2X digital tele-extender valuable for very long range photography of birds. I would normally shoot RAW, but can't get the reach. I realize I could probably crop RAW to the same result, but you just can't "see" at 600mm the same as 1200mm through the VF.

    OMD, Panasonic 100-300 at 300, 2x digital tele-extender...handheld.

  15. ssgreenley

    ssgreenley Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 12, 2011
    On the GH2 and some others, it works really well with video--you're not going to get artifacts associated with down sampling (more here - For stills, though, it's just cropping. As far as your lens question, I love my 75-300--it's small, sharp, and someday will work well with the m4/3 TC somebody's eventually going to release!
  16. slothead

    slothead Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 14, 2012
    Frederick, MD
    What I have found as a potential advantage is that if you record both ORF and JPG images in each capture, the TC only affects the JPG, so you have one that is TC'ed (the JPG) and one that is not (the ORF). On more than one occasion it has saved my bacon when the TC was on and I didn't realize it.
  17. pake

    pake Mu-43 All-Pro

    Oct 14, 2010
    Real Name:
    I've tried it but I prefer post processing with Photoshop. I want to be in charge of the level of "zooming" etc. I've used it for manual focusing with videos though (before recording).