Shootout Olympus Lens Shootout, Consumer Zoom vs Professional Prime: The Olympus 75-300mm ƒ4.8-6.7 II takes on the Olympus 300mm ƒ4.0 IS Pro

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MZ I assume is what Olympus refers to their micro four thirds lenses by.... M. Zuiko Digital Lenses (Used to be Zuiko Digital Lenses for 4/3 cameras and just plain Zuiko for film).

Back on Topic. I am very impressed by what you can get out of that 75-300mm lens. Great technique and processing!

That lens surprises me at time. But honestly the biggest trick to the 75-300 is filling the frame with your subject and either having amazing long lens technique or keeping the shutter speed up.
 

RAH

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I am curious about the 100-400 as well. I am sure it will be a bit better than the Panny but it will also be bigger and heavier which will get everyone complaining about it.
It would get me complaining, for certain. Why do you think it will be bigger and heavier? (I am talking about the 100-400 NON-pro lens here). I'm kind of hoping that Oly will show some sense. I mean, they will have the pro lens for those who want fast and enormous.
 

Sammyboy

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.... the new forth coming PRO lens is 150-400 zoom ... NOT a 100-400 zoom, this will be a premium zoom, not with a PRO designation ...
 
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It would get me complaining, for certain. Why do you think it will be bigger and heavier? (I am talking about the 100-400 NON-pro lens here). I'm kind of hoping that Oly will show some sense. I mean, they will have the pro lens for those who want fast and enormous.

I suspect they are trying to start a mid-line if lenses like the old HG lenses. Which means more optical correction then say the 75-300 and less software correction. One of my biggest complaints with Panny is their heavy reliance on software correction. Sure it makes for smaller/lighter lenses but you can’t push the files as far before they breakdown.
 
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I think the quality of the 300/4 is evident in this comparison - but I'm surprised how well the lowly 75-300 has performed. Given its size and price, it's hard to criticise it.

When close, yes. Guess I’m going to try some farther distance shots to show how quickly the 75-300 drops off in IQ.
 

mfturner

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@Phocal , I totally agree with your fill the frame with your subject advise. I think that is something I have learned, that small sensors do well so long as you don't crop. If you cannot fill the frame with the wildlife, then you need to find a way to include the wildlife in a scene so that the whole scene is your subject, if that makes sense. Your images and stories and advise are all fantastic, thank you for sharing your experience.
 

RAH

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.... the new forth coming PRO lens is 150-400 zoom ... NOT a 100-400 zoom, this will be a premium zoom, not with a PRO designation ...
Yes, I know that the upcoming PRO lens is a 150-400. But that is not the lens I meant when I said the new 100-400, which is also on their roadmap. The 100-400 will be standard grade, I think, and I hope not too large. I am more interested in lightweight than speed.
 

Darmok N Jalad

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@Phocal , I totally agree with your fill the frame with your subject advise. I think that is something I have learned, that small sensors do well so long as you don't crop. If you cannot fill the frame with the wildlife, then you need to find a way to include the wildlife in a scene so that the whole scene is your subject, if that makes sense. Your images and stories and advise are all fantastic, thank you for sharing your experience.
Yes, at least the 20MP sensors have given us a little more leeway. I noticed the difference right away when I went from 16 to 20, but the less cropping the better.
 

Dogbert62

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Phocal...
Thank you for this review of the 75-300mm and comparison to the 300mm f/4. Your work in South Texas and new efforts in Alaska are amazing

I, like many, struggle with long lens technique.. My 75-300mm is not the problem, my fieldcraft is the problem... I read your reviews and posts with earnest to see if I can glean tidbits on fieldcraft.. If I find a few, I get the fuzzy teddy bear with the glass eye out and see if I can replicate the knowledge.. It almost always helps but I still have much learn..

Is there a source of information in either text of video that you would suggest?

regards
Dogbert62
 

RichDesmond

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...The extra DoF is nice but not worth the worse background...

I do admit the deeper DoF does add a bit but me personally can't stand the background...

Let me take a contrarian view. :)

Who's the audience for these? If it's a member of the general public, I'll wager quite a bit that they're not seeing the background at all. And that's kind of the point, isn't it? We want the blurred background to focus attention on the subject. As long as the background isn't distracting at all, what matters is how good the image of the main subject is. In this case, the little bit of extra DOF in the 75-300 shot helps enough to make it the better photo.
IMHO, of course. :)

There're both amazing shots.
 

mfturner

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As a middle viewpoint, i might say that my cheap mu43 zoom lenses have challenged me to include busy backgrounds in a pleasing way. I came from the Canon world, and my favorite setup was a 3 prime lens setup with 300f4, 100f2, and 40f2.8. The 100f2 and 300f4 lenses gave beautiful background blur, i could make images work with very busy backgrounds, i could ignore the background if i wanted. Now, my 100 at f5.6 or 300 at f6.3 makes it much more challenging to ignore the background, and it has taken time to learn to view the scene as a whole rather than just looking at the primary subject.

Being a hobbyist, i could afford the time to learn and maneuver over many days to get different framings. I think I take better images now because of it, i like the somewhat environmental portrait it gives me, and adds another tool. But i miss the tools of the 100f2 and 300f4, i cannot make those images with my current kit. I enjoy a challenge though, so I'm not ready to invest in more kit just yet. But if i tried to sell photos, i wouldn't hesitate to upgrade.
 

Bushboy

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A few words if I may.
I’ve noticed that close up and telephoto have things in common. Disturbing backgrounds an example. With my closeups, usually, as soon as I stop the aperture down, everything goes pear shaped. It can completely ruin a good pic. It’s not ok to say no one will notice! Subject to background distance is usually not something that can be controlled.
A focus stacked photo, shot aperture wide open, is usually miles better than a single frame, aperture stopped down.
With a fast shutter speed, focus stacking takes very little time. The subject just has to be still for a very short while you focus on the eye, take the shots. Shoot wide open.
Shoot focus stacking on. You’ll always have the first shot.
This is why Olympus do the 2nd shot closer then the rest behind thing.
That’s my theory anyway! Not that I even shoot telephoto... lol
 

RAH

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Shoot focus stacking on. You’ll always have the first shot.
This is why Olympus do the 2nd shot closer then the rest behind thing.
That’s my theory anyway! Not that I even shoot telephoto... lol
I have never done this with a telephoto lens, but it's an interesting idea. I will give it a try ... The only thing I kind of question is the idea that a stacked photo is SHARPER. I would think the stacking would just improve the DOF. I have never heard of it being a substitute for stopping down to a lens's sweet-spot, sharpness-wise. But it is an interesting idea.
 

Bushboy

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You know, it’s not always going to work on every subject.
Things like haloing, are a real problem sometimes.
But I can tell you this much. It doesn’t cost a thing...
All my lenses are plenty sharp wide open.
Use the minimum amount of frames available, not the maximum. 8 is plenty.
Static telephoto shots should be an ideal subject for in camera stacking if you need more depth of field and detail, like when your close. Approaching infinity it’s not necessary, but when you close, as you should be, it’s a no brainer.
I’ve never done it either.... lol
 
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A few words if I may.
I’ve noticed that close up and telephoto have things in common. Disturbing backgrounds an example. With my closeups, usually, as soon as I stop the aperture down, everything goes pear shaped. It can completely ruin a good pic. It’s not ok to say no one will notice! Subject to background distance is usually not something that can be controlled.
A focus stacked photo, shot aperture wide open, is usually miles better than a single frame, aperture stopped down.
With a fast shutter speed, focus stacking takes very little time. The subject just has to be still for a very short while you focus on the eye, take the shots. Shoot wide open.
Shoot focus stacking on. You’ll always have the first shot.
This is why Olympus do the 2nd shot closer then the rest behind thing.
That’s my theory anyway! Not that I even shoot telephoto... lol
its why I bought the 300/4 but moved to alaska before I could use it on baby gators or snakes or frogs
 
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I agree with your conclusion.
I like the 75-300, but when I have to crop deep into the image, it breaks down.

I got a MC20 to put on my 40-150/2.8 to use instead of the 75-300. But it is HEAVIER.
So like you, which lens I carry will depend on the logistics of the shoot.

It is a great lens, especially for backpacking when weight is a concern. Glad I didn't sell all those times I was about to.
 

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