Review New Oly 100-400: Impressions and images

ac12

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Apr 24, 2018
Messages
3,083
Location
SF Bay Area, California, USA
I think that this is one of the best reasons for at least using a monopod. I mean, disregarding the steadiness issue, a monopod serves as a good support for your lens/camera while you're standing around waiting for those rare birds to fly within shooting distance. I think that this is why you see all those sport photographers on the sidelines with their giant lenses and monopods (besides taking up less room than a tripod, of course).
Well yes and no.
The monopod does indeed help with the weight of the heavy kits.
BUT, when I have to move and pan, the monopod gets in the way, of tracking a fast moving subject.
I have a very limited horizontal arc of coverage when I use a monopod. As long as the subject is within that small arc of coverage, like shooting the batter at home plate, I am OK.​
For field sports (football, soccer and lacrosse), I use a monopod when I shoot the JV game, to rest my arms, then I go free-hand for the varsity game. It is MUCH easier to shoot free-hand.
 

Ross the fiddler

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
May 20, 2012
Messages
4,237
Location
Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia
Real Name
Ross
Yes, Exact same issue here. First thing I noticed when I got the lens. The rotation is really jarring when you zoom in and out. The torque required to turn the zoom ring is enough to move the lens-body mount. I shot in pre-sunrise fog for a few days and didn't have any issues.

I personally keep both IS and IBIS on even if Oly says it doesn't do anything. I did some sitting-with-elbows-on-table tests and at 400mm dual IS was considerably better than only IS or IBIS.

I'm the exact opposite! Can't wait for spring. All of the birds have left California for now. And it's too cold for me to want to be out there for more than an hour anyways.

Edit: Sifting through two threads on the same subject is confusing me about what is talked about where.

In my month or two of ownership, I haven't had issue with the lens rotation causing negative issue with BIF or C-AF+T. The lens rotation is most noticeable when I need to quickly go from 100mm to 400mm (or vice versa) with a more forceful turn of the wrist.
The 1/10 mm difference between the 100-400 & other lenses in the locking pin slot (hole) isn't much, although the zoom is smooth it is also a drag on the lens with the movement at the body being noticeable & why I think the locking pin slot is a separate part (hopefully harder, but at least replaceable).

I agree it gets a bit lengthy sifting through forum comments & gets repeated or overlooked in added comments (I'm probably guilty of that).

Olympus does say OIS & IBIS works together, but not as Sync-IS.
Image stabilization performance when using "M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 100-400mm F5.0-6.3 IS" has been improved.
  • * Roll compensation is available with the image stabilization function of the body, along with the pitch and yaw image stabilization function of the lens.
  • * The "M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 100-400mm F5.0-6.3 IS" is not compatible with 5-axis Sync IS
 
Last edited:

Shortsonfire79

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
May 16, 2019
Messages
173
Location
Bay Area, California
I think that this is one of the best reasons for at least using a monopod. I mean, disregarding the steadiness issue, a monopod serves as a good support for your lens/camera while you're standing around waiting for those rare birds to fly within shooting distance. I think that this is why you see all those sport photographers on the sidelines with their giant lenses and monopods (besides taking up less room than a tripod, of course).
I suppose so. I can see an argument for monopod for sure, but I just like to let my rig sling while I wait; I think a monopod would even get in the way of that or trip someone. I find it much more convenient to hand hold than what I see other Canon/Nikon/Sony birders do with their tripods. I see a bird circling in the distance and I can quickly scoot over that way whereas the tripoders are stuck unless then want to lift their tripods over waist height to get around/over bushes.

And on top of that, I've been able to get useable results at 1/250. ;)
 

davidzvi

Super Moderator
Joined
Aug 12, 2012
Messages
4,156
Location
Outside Boston MA
Real Name
David
.......And on top of that, I've been able to get useable results at 1/250. ;).....
I did do some quick test shot of stuff around the house (including my wife's hand on the other side of the couch :oops:). Check out the SS. These were probably between 5 and 15 feet.
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 

OldRex

Mu-43 Veteran
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
309
Location
Sydney
Real Name
Mark
A couple of new ones. SOTC, hand held
Pelicans at The Entrance
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

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

And a "Sea Pidgeon"
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 

RAH

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Dec 1, 2013
Messages
1,441
Location
New Hampshire
Real Name
Rich
I suppose so. I can see an argument for monopod for sure, but I just like to let my rig sling while I wait; I think a monopod would even get in the way of that or trip someone. I find it much more convenient to hand hold than what I see other Canon/Nikon/Sony birders do with their tripods. I see a bird circling in the distance and I can quickly scoot over that way whereas the tripoders are stuck unless then want to lift their tripods over waist height to get around/over bushes.

And on top of that, I've been able to get useable results at 1/250. ;)
Yes, of course it's easier to shoot handheld than with a tripod or monopod. No argument there. I would just be unable to do so with a lens that big for any amount of time, and I'd want to stop supporting it sometimes too. I might be able to get away with a camera bag that I carry it in, but definitely not around my neck. Depends on one's ability.

I do think that monopods are hard to get used to and I have never mastered it, so I usually use a tripod when I need support. But I can see occasions where a monopod would be useful. Meanwhile, I'm lifting weights and bulking up in anticipation of getting the 100-400 in my hot sweaty hands...
 

Mike Wingate

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 21, 2017
Messages
3,389
Location
Altrincham
Real Name
Mike Wingate
I use a monopod. Been using 3 of them for 45 years. I hardly ever extend them fully. I wear a Cullman monopod strap over my shoulder and back. This has a small pocket, created by a fold in the webbing, that seats the end of the monopod. The other end has a Manfrotto ball head. Perfect. It does make a difference to the shots.
 
Joined
Feb 15, 2014
Messages
12,059
Location
State of Ignorant Denial
I use a monopod. Been using 3 of them for 45 years. I hardly ever extend them fully. I wear a Cullman monopod strap over my shoulder and back. This has a small pocket, created by a fold in the webbing, that seats the end of the monopod. The other end has a Manfrotto ball head. Perfect. It does make a difference to the shots.
I would need at least 1 more arm to use 3 monopods.
 

jhawk1000

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Jun 30, 2013
Messages
674
Location
Kansas
Real Name
Mel
I just finished up a season of football with the State Tournament. Luckily it was during the daylight hours with slight overcast for most of the game. I hand-carried and shot a very heavy Nikon D2x with a 180mm lens but would have welcomed a monopod just for the weight. I also used an Olympus OM D EM 1 ii with 40-150mm 2.8 with 1.4x and an Olympus OM D EM 1 with 50-200 2.8/3.5. These were on a monopod and I can tell a difference in the images. Many of the D2x are sharp, especially those taken in long bursts but almost all of the images with the Olympus' on monopods are more crisp and sharp. I feel my shots with the Nikon would have been better with the monopod.
 

RichardC

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Mar 25, 2018
Messages
3,878
Location
The Royal Town of Sutton Coldfield, UK.
Real Name
Richard
Don't 3 monopods equal 1 tripod?
Benbow turned that concept into reality.

I drew the short straw and used one of their tripods at a wedding.

How wonderfully entertaining to twist a lever and witness three legs and a sliding column simultaneously develop a mind all of their own with my Bronica SQAi perched on the top.

How we all laughed.
 

Mike Wingate

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 21, 2017
Messages
3,389
Location
Altrincham
Real Name
Mike Wingate
Don't 3 monopods equal 1 tripod?
My original monpod is the removable centre column. Of my Cullman trip that has my archery spotting scope mounted on a Manfrotto 322RC head. My carbon Sirui P326 is my regular monopod. The Manfrotto M290 does not have a spiked foot, so can be taken on aircraft when I used to go away on holiday.
 

Mike Wingate

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 21, 2017
Messages
3,389
Location
Altrincham
Real Name
Mike Wingate
Any road up, back to the Big O100-400. It has OIS, if the Olympus EM1-x body has IBIS, why dont they sync in 5 axis or whatever?
 

RichardC

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Mar 25, 2018
Messages
3,878
Location
The Royal Town of Sutton Coldfield, UK.
Real Name
Richard
Any road up, back to the Big O100-400. It has OIS, if the Olympus EM1-x body has IBIS, why dont they sync in 5 axis or whatever?
Money - and possibly that the lens wasn't designed as an Olympus MFT lens from the ground up.

Also the 300/4 and eventual 150-400 would be an even harder sell.

Maybe? Who really knows except the beancounters and designers?
 

ac12

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Apr 24, 2018
Messages
3,083
Location
SF Bay Area, California, USA
Money - and possibly that the lens wasn't designed as an Olympus MFT lens from the ground up.

Also the 300/4 and eventual 150-400 would be an even harder sell.

Maybe? Who really knows except the beancounters and designers?
As you say, there may be a basic design issue that would prevent Sync-IS, without a start from scratch redesign of the OIS.
And it makes sense, to increase the difference between it and the 150-400.
 
Joined
Apr 20, 2020
Messages
1,693
Location
Beaumaris, Melbourne, Australia
Real Name
John ...
Yes, of course it's easier to shoot handheld than with a tripod or monopod. No argument there. I would just be unable to do so with a lens that big for any amount of time, and I'd want to stop supporting it sometimes too. I might be able to get away with a camera bag that I carry it in, but definitely not around my neck. Depends on one's ability.

I do think that monopods are hard to get used to and I have never mastered it, so I usually use a tripod when I need support. But I can see occasions where a monopod would be useful. Meanwhile, I'm lifting weights and bulking up in anticipation of getting the 100-400 in my hot sweaty hands...
Rich, a Manfrotto grip ball head is the answer to your prayers. 322RC

https://www.manfrotto.com/au-en/grip-ball-head-ergonomic-handle-and-friction-control-wheel-322rc2/

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


It's like waltzing ...
 

blackfox wildlife

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
187
a few from me in north Wales u.k omd1-mk2 + oly 100-400 handheld .. snow buntings on the beach
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 

RAH

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Dec 1, 2013
Messages
1,441
Location
New Hampshire
Real Name
Rich
Rich, a Manfrotto grip ball head is the answer to your prayers. 322RC

https://www.manfrotto.com/au-en/grip-ball-head-ergonomic-handle-and-friction-control-wheel-322rc2/

View attachment 860981

It's like waltzing ...
Do you mean for use on a monopod or a tripod? For a monopod it seems like overkill (I usually use a tilt head meant for monopods). For a tripod with long lenses, I usually use a 3-way pan/tilt head (like you'd use with a spotting scope or video camera, but with the 3rd adjustment).

I could see where that ball grip might be better than a regular ball head for a long lens (gives you more leverage), but just looking at it, it seems that it has no separate pan lock, so when you loosen it you have complete adjustability, which seems like a bad thing to me for a long lens. I mean usually (note I said usually) you don't want to go vertical with a long lens, so having the head easily allow that is bothersome, as would be a ball head with no pan lock.

It does look interesting, so perhaps you could explain why it is good for use with a long lens. :)
 

Latest posts

Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Mu-43 is a fan site and not associated with Olympus, Panasonic, or other manufacturers mentioned on this site.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Copyright © 2009-2019 Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom