Event action AF settings?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by davidzvi, Nov 4, 2014.

  1. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    OK, so I'm trying to use my E-M1 more for events and having a hard time with the action stuff. I've done a bit of surfing and found some information but am looking for more. I've read about people just using manual AF with the hyper focal distance for primes. Others say AF-S is just fast enough that it can handle it, this does not seem to be working in the dark venues I tend to shoot.

    What settings would you use for something like this?
    Nikon D700, AF-C (release priority), 1/100, not sure on the setting for focus tracking with lock-on.
    Kids were moving, note the girl on the left's hair in mid air.
  2. swede

    swede Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    Oct 25, 2014
    The flash froze the moment, not the AF. You should be able achieve the same results.
    What the D700 may be better at, is to actually achieve a focus lock faster than the EM1.
    But imho, this can be done with any system :) 

    As to wich settings... hard to tell by the image. Its full frame, probably wide shot between 24-35mm around F/4 and @1/100.
    My guess is that CLS plays a big part here (no time for manual flash)

    I've not yet tested Olympus flash system.
    But you could make this shot with 12-20 mm and around f/2,8 and ISO 600 maybe... to get the same exposure.
    But then again, the CLS flash part is a variable we don't know.
  3. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    Sorry for the misunderstanding, that is my shot from a D700.

    What I'm looking for are the AF settings for an E-M1. The camera is hunting too much and not shooting or getting confused as to what it should lock on too (hands / arms / heads moving this way and that).

    Flash will freeze some movement, but then again, sometimes you want the movement effect.

  4. Klorenzo

    Klorenzo Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 10, 2014
    Which lens are you using? Some are really fast, 12-40 for example, some are really slow like P20/1.7
  5. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    I'm doing OK with my 75 f1.8 and 35-100 f2.8 for candid (mainly cocktail hour adult stuff).
    For this with my DSLR I would half press for AF-C lock on someone and shoot on a smile, laugh, etc. With the E-M1 I've been trying the same or AF-S. I could use better setting here as well but I'm doing OK, not great but OK.

    But it's on the dance floor that I am really having trouble. Here I have Olympus 17mm f1.8.

    I've tried playing with the lock on duration, AF-C with and without tracking,....
    The next thing I plan on trying is MF and ~ f2.8. Glad the 17mm has a distance scale.
  6. b_rubenstein

    b_rubenstein Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 20, 2012
    Melbourne, FL
    If you use on camera flash, the E-M1 will never match the Nikon for AF. Ever. Regardless of AF settings. The reason is the PDAF of the Nikon camera combined with the projected pattern of the AF assist beam of the Nikon flash. With the D200 through the D7000, with the 17-55/2.8 and SB flashes, the camera almost always nailed focus almost instantly for 10's of thousands of shots at weddings and B'nai Mitzvahs. I always had the AF set to AF-S, focus priority. Out of focus shots are useless.

    All the flashes for µ4/3 cameras use a flash light AF assist light and it's just not bright enough for the CDAF of the cameras to focus very fast. (I have an E-M1.) AF-S will focus faster than AF-C, because it takes less time to calculate focus.
  7. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    Equal? Probably not yet, CDAF vs PDAF. But many are using them so I'm looking for info. Maybe I need to change the way I shoot, not sure.

    FYI, the AF assist pattern projection is only while the camera is in AF-S with Nikon. I tend to use AF-C and F4 on the dance floor. The depth of field is generally enough that any slight shift in target is enough that the shot is fine where AF-S and focus priority on occasion might stop the camera from shooting. But that's my style / method, never claimed it's the best or only.
  8. Clint

    Clint Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Apr 22, 2013
    San Diego area, CA
    Whether the D800, D7100, E-M1 or E-M5 I use S-AF focusing, typically with only one focus point. The three photos below are with the E-M1 and 12-40mm lens.

    12-40mm @ 13mm, ISO 1600, F4, 1/25 sec, flash

    12-40mm @ 40mm, ISO 1600, F2.8, 1/30 sec, flash

    12-40mm @ 28mm, ISO 100, F2.8, 1/6 sec, flash - I wanted some movement to represent the discussion between a young lady and a WWII vet about his time during WWII.
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