Results of E-M1 mk1 at football game :-(

ac12

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I just got back from a high school night football game where I used the EM1 as a 2nd camera.
And it was a good thing that it was the 2nd camera :(
Compared to my Nikon D7200, it did a poor job shooting football on its first game.
Granted it was my first game with the EM1. I thought I had figured out the proper configuration, but maybe not.
  • The #1 problem: The EVF in continuous high seemed to suffer from something like a buffer lag. After the last shot in the burst, it took about a second (maybe less) to regain the live view. That made it a PiA to try to track action and shoot bursts, as I could not see and lost track of the play after the burst. This was frustrating.
    • I had to switch to single shot, to avoid this viewfinder lag :(
  • I had to turn OFF record view, so the EVF did not play back the last image shot, and kill my live view of the action.
  • I could not figure out how to turn the EVF into full-time live view. That "might" fix the above 2 problems. Now that I'm home, I plan to dig into this.
  • Even on high refresh, sometimes there was a lag in displaying the image when I quickly swung from the QB to the receiver, or there was a burst of action where a lot of pixels changed.
The inability to track the player in the EVF after shooting a burst was the killer, followed by the screen refresh lag during some fast action. This was not a good start for the camera, for sports.

On the positive side, it was a LOT lighter than my Nikon kit.
But the lenses were not comparable; the m4/3 consumer 40-150R f/4-5.6 vs the FF pro 70-200/4.

Switching between 2 cameras during a play was a problem, as things moved too fast.

Has anyone else used the E-M1 successfully for FAST action, and can pass along hints related to the problems that I ran into ?
 

wjiang

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This is from shooting birds and aircraft...

Don't use sequential high if you need to track. Sequential high only shows you the shot just taken which is guaranteed to lag. Use sequential L which at least gives you live refresh in between the shutter blackouts.

The preview will also start to lag if the sensor has to gain up a lot in low light. Shooting with an f/5.6 lens at night really doesn't help with that.

That's where OVF has an advantage - your eyes don't get slower just because they need to boost the amplification.
 
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It is all about the settings. Like said before, continuous high sequential is wrong. My wife has shot football for years for high school and University and used to shoot with a Nikon D750, D800 because of the High ISO capabilities of the Nikon. Her lenses were 70-200 2.8, 300mm 4, or 300mm 2.8 and even with the larger apertures, High School lighting required at least 1600 and mainly 3200. She now is trying out an Olympus outfit with Em 5ii with 40-150mm 2.8 Pro lens and after massaging the settings, it works better than the Nikon's and she has had pictures that are usable up to 20,000 ISO. Sports magazines and University Athletic Departments have used, with permission and with payment, her pictures of recruits in action. I also shoot alongside her with the Nikon cameras but her pictures, straight out of the camera, are crisper and have way less post-processing.
 
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I'm very surprised to hear that an E-M5 II, a camera with no PDAF and dismal C-AF performance, performed better than a D750, which has Nikon's wonderful Group AF mode, and a much better sensor for low light performance.
 
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It was not dismal in her hands. It was at least as easy to use and offered at least as fast of action stoppage as the D750. For daylight, we still use the tried and true D2x. I guess dismal is defined by the user. It is telling that the D750 will be the next on the selling block. She still uses the D800 with large megapixel for her portraits and Opera shots.
 
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The E-M5 II performed just as well (or better) than the D750 in terms of holding focus on the subject in motion (i.e. C-AF), while shooting a burst of images?

I'm just surprised, since that goes against pretty much every user's impressions of the E-M5 II's C-AF abilities, myself included. I owned the E-M5 II, and really liked the size and construction. But for C-AF performance, I found the E-M1 II better than the E-M5 II (and I find the D500 better than the E-M1 II).
 

ac12

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So my take is:
  • So contrary to what I had thought, nothing new there, I should use continuous LOW.
  • Need a FASTER lens, to reduce EVF gain.
    • A 12-100 f/4 is only 1 stop faster. Will that do, or do I really need to go to the 40-150 f/2.8.
    • The 12-100 is in my purchase plan, the 40-150 f/2.8 is not.
For lighting reference, my exposure are:
  • E-M1: ISO=12800, ss=1/500 sec, f/5.6
  • D7200 with the 70-200 f/4 lens: ISO=6400, ss=1/500 sec, f/4
 
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The E-M5 II performed just as well (or better) than the D750 in terms of holding focus on the subject in motion (i.e. C-AF), while shooting a burst of images?
She does not like the burst of images so common on the sidelines of football nor basketball. She might have 2 or three but the editing time on the constant finger on the release leaves her and me cold. We shoot on sidelines with newspaper photogs and we can always tell those who do not edit themselves since they burn cards almost as fast as they can. We do our own editing and post processing and ours are for the schools, not for newspapers. So for our usage, it is great. I guess that it depends upon what you do and what you want as to what is best. I have read that the AF on the older EF M1 is slower but I do not want to plunge into another $1500 body for the EM 1 II. It works for us no matter what others say.
 
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So my take is:
  • So contrary to what I had thought, nothing new there, I should use continuous LOW.
  • Need a FASTER lens, to reduce EVF gain.
    • A 12-100 f/4 is only 1 stop faster. Will that do, or do I really need to go to the 40-150 f/2.8.
    • The 12-100 is in my purchase plan, the 40-150 f/2.8 is not.
For lighting reference, my exposure are:
  • E-M1: ISO=12800, ss=1/500 sec, f/5.6
  • D7200 with the 70-200 f/4 lens: ISO=6400, ss=1/500 sec, f/4
If shooting sports, I would not go for the 12-100. You need every bit of speed you can get when shooting Friday Night Lights football because of the conditions.

To be honest, I don't think that you'll get the same performance out of your E-M1 + a 40-150 PRO that you do out of your D7200 and 70-200. Can you make the Olympus work? Yes, absolutely. But IMO the Nikon will be easier to use, give you more keepers, and give you more flexibility for framing via cropping (24MP vs 16MP).

Additionally, if you have the 70-200 f/4, the Olympus 40-150 PRO is for all intents and purposes the same size and weight. In the end, the Nikon kit will weigh 200-300g more, but you'll likely have better success with it as well.
 

genesimmons

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i have yet to try a 40-150 f2.8 but i have the 12-100 and its snyc is works great,its more versatile for me than the 40-150 focal lenght but if u are mainly shooting sports maybe the longer end is more important to me i wanted more on the wider end, i to struggle with the em1.2 v2 my sony fullframe but i have come to accept the limitations of each and i dont expect either one to be my do it all camera unfortunatly, i know what the em1 can do and i know what my sony can so i use them appropratly and dont expect them to compete because in all fairness they cannot
 

barry13

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  • A 12-100 f/4 is only 1 stop faster. Will that do, or do I really need to go to the 40-150 f/2.8.
  • The 12-100 is in my purchase plan, the 40-150 f/2.8 is not.
Getting to f/4 from f/5.6 will cut your ISO in half.
Getting to f/2.8 would cut it in half again.

If 100mm is long enough, consider the Panasonic 35-100/2.8.
 

ac12

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If shooting sports, I would not go for the 12-100. You need every bit of speed you can get when shooting Friday Night Lights football because of the conditions.

To be honest, I don't think that you'll get the same performance out of your E-M1 + a 40-150 PRO that you do out of your D7200 and 70-200. Can you make the Olympus work? Yes, absolutely. But IMO the Nikon will be easier to use, give you more keepers, and give you more flexibility for framing via cropping (24MP vs 16MP).

Additionally, if you have the 70-200 f/4, the Olympus 40-150 PRO is for all intents and purposes the same size and weight. In the end, the Nikon kit will weigh 200-300g more, but you'll likely have better success with it as well.
I agree about lens speed for night and indoor gym sports; FAST glass works better than slow glass.
ISO 6400 is marginal (@ f/4), but better than ISO 12800 (@ f/5.6). But I would rather be down at ISO 3200 (@ f/2.8).
The problem is that most of the FAST glass is larger/heavier FX/FF, not smaller/lighter DX. This is what attracted me to m4/3.
And as I get older, that weight is becoming more of an issue. I cannot carry the kind of gear load that I easily did when in college. Getting old sucks :(

This trial use was to see if the EM1 could work as a night game camera.
And if so, then I would look into faster lenses.

he he, I have all the weights from when I was studying going to m4/3
P-35-100/2.8 = 360g (dang this lens is light compared to the others)
O-12-100/4 = 551g
O-40-150/2.8 = 760g
N-24-120/4 = 710g
N-70-200/4 = 850g
N-70-200/2.8 = 1540g (too heavy and $$$$ for me)

EM1 + P-35-100/2.8 = 803g
EM1 + O-12-100 = 994g
EM1 + O-40-150/2.8 = 1203g
D7200 + 24-120/4 = 1385g
D7200 + 70-200/4 = 1525g​

But the HS shooting is to help their yearbook, and for my fun. Since I am not paid for it, I have to control/limit how much $$$$ I spend that is primarily/only for the school vs. for me. Hence my preference for the more general purpose 12-100/4 vs 40-150/2.8 PRO. What I was hoping for with the 12-100 was the wide end, as that is where I have been repeatedly missing or having difficulty getting shots. When the players come CLOSE to the sideline where I am standing, the 70mm end of the 70-200 is too long, and I only get a partial body shot. Hindsight being 20/20, the 24-120/4 might have been a better choice for the DX camera :(

I'm going to give it another try at the next home night game in a few weeks.
- Change to continuous LOW, and see how that works.
If not it will be the D7200 + 70-200/4 at night.
 

ac12

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Getting to f/4 from f/5.6 will cut your ISO in half.
Getting to f/2.8 would cut it in half again.

If 100mm is long enough, consider the Panasonic 35-100/2.8.
I would love a 12-150 f/2 PRO :D
But in practice the 35-100/2.8 would work just fine. It is shorter on both ends than the 70-200 on my DX camera, but I would rather have the wider short end anyway.
 

Ross the fiddler

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No matter which system used, if doing night games then fast glass should be used. Using kit lenses at night is asking too much & why I value the Oly 40-150 f2.8 lens. It has the reach & range at f2.8 which is reasonably good for many situations. If you’re going to a game then you are staying in one spot so weight shouldn’t be as much of an issue, & to make that lens lighter, take the tripod foot off, but use the hood to avoid light interference.
 

bjurasz

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Get a long, fast prime. For field sports you really don't need the zoom all that much, what you need is a really large aperture. You will get a better, larger, longer, faster lens for your money if you go with the prime.
 

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