Olympus 300mm f4 - What am I doing wrong?

mrjoemorgan

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The small text on the box at right is noticeably clearer to me on the S-AF shots. I just viewed them as the forum shows them, I didn't bother zooming in, etc.
On the "Tumbleweeds" Box? This box is a couple of inches closer to the camera (sorry I should have said I was focusing on the TIDE logo) so would that suggest that its front focusing?
 

barry13

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On the "Tumbleweeds" Box? This box is a couple of inches closer to the camera (sorry I should have said I was focusing on the TIDE logo) so would that suggest that its front focusing?
CDAF (I.e. when using Oly S-AF) Is very unlikely to misfocus (assuming the target is bigger than the focus square, ...)

So the fact that there is a difference between the SAF & CAF shots indicates the PDAF is not fully calibrated.
 

mrjoemorgan

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CDAF (I.e. when using Oly S-AF) Is very unlikely to misfocus (assuming the target is bigger than the focus square, ...)

So the fact that there is a difference between the SAF & CAF shots indicates the PDAF is not fully calibrated.
Got it, thank you. Is it common/normal for PDAF to be off slightly across all lens combos? Does that mean its a body>lens calibration issue across the board not a single lens issue?
 

Phocal

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Got it, thank you. Is it common/normal for PDAF to be off slightly across all lens combos? Does that mean its a body>lens calibration issue across the board not a single lens issue?
I recommend reading this post I did about doing a Micro Focus Adjustment because it goes into a lot more detail. Short answer is for mirrorless the error is in the lens and will be different for each and every lens. It's why I recommend doing/checking every lens you will use CAF with. For DSLR's they also have to contend with there being error in the camera because the two sensors (image and focus) are not parallel. This error will be there for every lens plus a DSLR still has the lens error to worry about.

Also of note is that error in the camera (DSLR only) will be the same regardless of focus distance. Error in the lens will vary by focus distance. It's why I recommend doing the adjustment at your typically shooting distance.

any other questions don't hesitate to ask
 

mrjoemorgan

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Thanks @Phocal - been reading your article at great length. Should I buy the lens align and focus tune? Or just lens align?

I just went out and did some more tests in the field, I’ll upload them shortly. Will give more examples and data point to confirm the focus issue theory. Also noticed my 300mm is on version 1 which I think is out of date.

Now this might be a naive question but is it normal for a $5k camera and lens combo to have to go through a focus calibration before it will focus properly? I understand that this is a game of precision based on mm movements of technical equipment. I guess I’m just disappointed that having emptied my bank account to get this body and lens, it now needs fine tuning before I can get anything close to a sharp image.
 

mrjoemorgan

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NEW TESTS
Tripod. 300mm + 1.4.
12 second with anti-shock. S-IS 1 on the camera. Lens IS was ON. Small single AF point

Test 1a - 5 shots at SAF
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Test 1b - 5 shots at CAF
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mrjoemorgan

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Test 2a - SAF - Handheld lying on the ground with Low Sequential Anti Shock
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Test 2b - CAF - Handheld lying on the ground with Low Sequential Anti Shock

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mrjoemorgan

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Test 3 - BIF - Handheld - Low Sequential with Anti Shock - CAF - 5 cross-hair focus points
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mrjoemorgan

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Test 4a - SAF - Resting lens tripod mount on a ledge
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Test 4b - CAF - Resting lens tripod mount on a ledge
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mrjoemorgan

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Every Nikon and Canon DSLR needs focus calibration for every lens.
On mu-43, only the 4 PDAF bodies need it, and only if you plan to use C-AF or 4/3 lenses.
I must have got lucky with my Canon gear. Although they were at a lot sports events I would shoot, so my gear would see the Canon team 2/3 times a year for a clean and check up etc.

Looking at my latest test, I think both SAF and CAF are off. Although it could be down to the lens firmware?

Going to do some calibration and go from there.
 

mrjoemorgan

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I also noticed that with shots taken with the lens set to 1.4m - 4m are PIN sharp with SAF. The others, not so much.
 

Phocal

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Thanks @Phocal - been reading your article at great length. Should I buy the lens align and focus tune? Or just lens align?
I recommend getting both. Trying to do the calibration without the software is possible, but the software automates everything. Personally I would not attempt it without software, I go into the reasons why in the thread on the adjustment.

Now this might be a naive question but is it normal for a $5k camera and lens combo to have to go through a focus calibration before it will focus properly? I understand that this is a game of precision based on mm movements of technical equipment. I guess I’m just disappointed that having emptied my bank account to get this body and lens, it now needs fine tuning before I can get anything close to a sharp image.
It is perfectly normal. I had to do this with all my Canon gear, even my $10k 500/4 needed it.

If your SAF is off you have one of two problems. Something wrong with the gear or the focus point is larger than your target and you are focusing on something behind/in front of your subject. In theory, CDAF should be 100% accurate.

Are your images cropped at all?
 

mrjoemorgan

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I recommend getting both. Trying to do the calibration without the software is possible, but the software automates everything. Personally I would not attempt it without software, I go into the reasons why in the thread on the adjustment.



It is perfectly normal. I had to do this with all my Canon gear, even my $10k 500/4 needed it.

If your SAF is off you have one of two problems. Something wrong with the gear or the focus point is larger than your target and you are focusing on something behind/in front of your subject. In theory, CDAF should be 100% accurate.

Are your images cropped at all?
thanks again for your thoughts

Unless BIF I am using the smallest focus point and focusing on the head or the body of the bird.

The images I have uploaded are unedited /uncropped.

Looking at my SAF images, do you think it could be a gear issue?

I’m looking back at some previous photos using SAF with the 40-150 w/ 1.4 and noticed they are also not focusing correctly.
 

Phocal

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thanks again for your thoughts

Unless BIF I am using the smallest focus point and focusing on the head or the body of the bird.

The images I have uploaded are unedited /uncropped.

Looking at my SAF images, do you think it could be a gear issue?

I’m looking back at some previous photos using SAF with the 40-150 w/ 1.4 and noticed they are also not focusing correctly.
If you have similar issues with the 40-150 than I am thinking something with the camera. I honestly expected to see more detail in that sparrow based on the distance. From another thread someone mentioned not able to find the focus distance in the exif from a mk2. I checked your images and there is not focus distance like in my EM1's exif. So I don't know the shooting distance of your photos, but here is a shot taken handheld from my slowly drifting kayak. I recommend clicking through to Flickr and zooming in on that image, you can see all the individual feathers. Look at the other images in that album, it's all 300/4 shot with MC-14.

28078897279_1a45cd2ed6_k.jpg
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Tricolored Heron 007 by Phocal Art, on Flickr

I am thinking maybe something with the IBIS since your Tide bottle shots were much better. Or it's your shooting technique, also based on the Tide bottle shots.

Edit - if you can get me the shooting distance to the little bird I will link an image shot from similar distance if I have any.
 

mrjoemorgan

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If you have similar issues with the 40-150 than I am thinking something with the camera. I honestly expected to see more detail in that sparrow based on the distance. From another thread someone mentioned not able to find the focus distance in the exif from a mk2. I checked your images and there is not focus distance like in my EM1's exif. So I don't know the shooting distance of your photos, but here is a shot taken handheld from my slowly drifting kayak. I recommend clicking through to Flickr and zooming in on that image, you can see all the individual feathers. Look at the other images in that album, it's all 300/4 shot with MC-14.

View attachment 798475Tricolored Heron 007 by Phocal Art, on Flickr

I am thinking maybe something with the IBIS since your Tide bottle shots were much better. Or it's your shooting technique, also based on the Tide bottle shots.

Edit - if you can get me the shooting distance to the little bird I will link an image shot from similar distance if I have any.
You see the shooting distance in your EXIF? As in the focal length? And you have the mark II? Odd that it’s not showing in mine. I’ll take a look when I get home

Ive only had the EM1.2 since December. I’ll check some shots with my EM5.2 and 40-150 to see how they are.
 
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