Olympus 150-400 f4.5 IS Pro coming real soon now?

Lcrunyon

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A long video, but a good one. I enjoy his reviews. I am surprised though to see his keeper rate of sharp images was worse with bird AF turned on than when left off. That’s unfortunate.
Yeah, it’s extremely disappointing. I do trust Mathieu’s reviews, but it is interesting that others have suggested better results. I still haven’t downloaded the firmware, nor have any opportunity to do any birding to test myself, but I was hoping for some sort of improvement. I do think that there could be a difference in familiarity and success rate between reviewers who solely use one system versus those who use and test many. But even then, I would think that the bird AF would have been more of a help, unless he was somehow fighting the process – which is something I have heard other photographers discuss when advising people on how to use Olympus bird AF.

In the comments, Mathieu mused that maybe Olympus needs a new sensor in order to improve AF further. I suppose that’s possible. It is the oldest thing in the E-M1X, and could be what’s holding it back. There are times when I get 100% hit rate with normal AF, so it could be the conditions and how the sensor is able to resolve them.

On more positive notes…

His findings on the highlight and shadow recovery, even with the R5, were very interesting. I’m sure a lot of full frame fans would not have anticipated that!

One thing that Mathieu didn’t mention in his comparison, but that I think must be discussed when talking about Olympus Bird photography, is Pro Capture. I think it is a extremely heavy advantage for Olympus that definitely distinguishes the system and its viability as a choice for wildlife photographers. It’s really that, coupled with the flexibility and image quality of a extremely sharp and bright zoom, and it’s portability (which he did laude) that I think really is this combinations strength.
 

Pluttis

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Yeah, it’s extremely disappointing. I do trust Mathieu’s reviews, but it is interesting that others have suggested better results. I still haven’t downloaded the firmware, nor have any opportunity to do any birding to test myself, but I was hoping for some sort of improvement. I do think that there could be a difference in familiarity and success rate between reviewers who solely use one system versus those who use and test many. But even then, I would think that the bird AF would have been more of a help, unless he was somehow fighting the process – which is something I have heard other photographers discuss when advising people on how to use Olympus bird AF.

In the comments, Mathieu mused that maybe Olympus needs a new sensor in order to improve AF further. I suppose that’s possible. It is the oldest thing in the E-M1X, and could be what’s holding it back. There are times when I get 100% hit rate with normal AF, so it could be the conditions and how the sensor is able to resolve them.

On more positive notes…

His findings on the highlight and shadow recovery, even with the R5, were very interesting. I’m sure a lot of full frame fans would not have anticipated that!

One thing that Mathieu didn’t mention in his comparison, but that I think must be discussed when talking about Olympus Bird photography, is Pro Capture. I think it is a extremely heavy advantage for Olympus that definitely distinguishes the system and its viability as a choice for wildlife photographers. It’s really that, coupled with the flexibility and image quality of a extremely sharp and bright zoom, and it’s portability (which he did laude) that I think really is this combinations strength.
But is the two keeper rate scores really from the one and same Oly 150-400 test?
I would think the keeper rate score for the 5×5 grid is from the earlier test he did with the 300mm f4 prime?

Does not feel so likely that he manages to get exactly the same points/score every time he test the AF performance as it is not a test where you have controlled conditions and movement patterns so it is the same at every test occasion,

Agree, he show that the way smaller and older m43 sensor holds up really good when compared to to a modern FF sensor.

The lens itself seems to really good
 

Lcrunyon

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But is the two keeper rate scores really from the one and same Oly 150-400 test?
I would think the keeper rate score for the 5×5 grid is from the earlier test he did with the 300mm f4 prime?

Does not feel so likely that he manages to get exactly the same points/score every time he test the AF performance as it is not a test where you have controlled conditions and movement patterns so it is the same at every test occasion,

Agree, he show that the way smaller and older m43 sensor holds up really good when compared to to a modern FF sensor.

The lens itself seems to really good
Very true. It’s hard to get consistent enough results with tests like these.
 

whumber

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Yeah, it’s extremely disappointing. I do trust Mathieu’s reviews, but it is interesting that others have suggested better results. I still haven’t downloaded the firmware, nor have any opportunity to do any birding to test myself, but I was hoping for some sort of improvement. I do think that there could be a difference in familiarity and success rate between reviewers who solely use one system versus those who use and test many. But even then, I would think that the bird AF would have been more of a help, unless he was somehow fighting the process – which is something I have heard other photographers discuss when advising people on how to use Olympus bird AF.
I haven't seen any other reviewers actually make any methodical comparison though. most of the other reviews are just "It works great!" without any type of detailed comparison. I've had some critiques of Mathieu's methodology in the past, but he's made improvements and I think his recent results are all pretty trustworthy.
 

Pluttis

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I haven't seen any other reviewers actually make any methodical comparison though. most of the other reviews are just "It works great!" without any type of detailed comparison. I've had some critiques of Mathieu's methodology in the past, but he's made improvements and I think his recent results are all pretty trustworthy.
True but if hes going to compare 5x5 grid to bird AF he needs to do the comparison head to head same day and with same lens.

In this test it seems like he compare the results he got with 150-400 + bird AF with the results that he got from the old test with 5x5 grid + 300f4
 
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Lcrunyon

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I haven't seen any other reviewers actually make any methodical comparison though. most of the other reviews are just "It works great!" without any type of detailed comparison. I've had some critiques of Mathieu's methodology in the past, but he's made improvements and I think his recent results are all pretty trustworthy.
It’s really hard to say. I think being able to distinguish a 5% change in performance with such uncontrollable test scenarios is pretty suspect. Nevertheless, tests like these should still be good enough to give a rough ballpark of performance. I was hoping for an improvement large enough to see, and it is definitely disappointing that we didn’t get it.
 
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While his tests might be a little disappointing, I've seen others report very good results. It may simply be a result of not having enough time with the combination to find the best settings to suit the particular situation. That's not unusual for reviewers as we know.

I think what matters more to we M43 shooters is whether we would switch to a FF solution like the Canon and spend even more money on the even more expensive Canon lens to get what may not be enough of an improvement. As he noted, the Olympus combo is far more versatile as a zoom than the Canon prime. Not to mention a LOT smaller and lighter than the Canon combo. Instead of thinking about this in "absolute" terms, it may be more useful to put it into the context of our own situations. I wouldn't go for the Canon combo even if it could guarantee perfect results. I'd be happy to settle for pretty darn good. :)

I made a choice to stick with the Olympus 100-400 f5-6.3 IS and the EM1 III. I know I could get Bird AF with an EM1X, but I'm not obsessed about BIF enough to make that investment. Maybe I'll change my mind about the X later, but we'll see.
 
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Mike Wingate

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U.K. camera shops are expecting this lens to be available for sale in Spring 2021. Preorders taken, first come, first served.
 

PhotoCal

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U.K. camera shops are expecting this lens to be available for sale in Spring 2021. Preorders taken, first come, first served.
Pass.

I think Olympus would sell more it was black. That would make it easier to sneak into the house.
 
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hoodlum

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Phocal

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Someone posted some initial photos from their new lens. Hopefully they open their Flicker account so that we can see the full size images but my initial impression is that this is the best out of focus results I have seen from any Olympus Telephoto to date. The Shorebird sitting on a the rock would not provide as nice out of focus blur from my 300mm f4.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/albums/72157717952827876/with/50853014651/
Honestly, not any better than my 300/4
 

hoodlum

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It doesn't seem that large for a bag once the lens hood is reversed.

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

Koriolan

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Thanks to Olympus Poland ambassador I had that lens "on hand " for a minute. City jungle its definitely not the best environment to try it, moreover i have almost no experience in shooting using such a long lenses without tripod. So please don't evaluate this foto and lens. Distance- round 150 m, temperature -2 , more in EXIF.
Yesterday - in the bird sancuary, I met the professional photographer with absolutely unusual hardware. Probably showing my Oly body told, he tested that lens for one week and did'nt wanted to give it back.
But the price is above his will to spend the money.
 

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