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Share birds - companion thread

Discussion in 'Nature' started by Rasmus, Apr 14, 2015.

  1. Rasmus

    Rasmus Mu-43 Top Veteran

    657
    Nov 16, 2013
    Stockholm, Sweden.
    Hi everyone,

    It's been discussed a bit so why not do it? The "Share birds" thread contains LOTS of gear talk, technique talk, photos of gear used to get bird photos etc. Let's move that to a separate thread!

    Admin: I'm not sure if the thread should be here or in some other forum, please move it if appropriate!
     
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  2. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Not sure how this will work - I expect plenty of posts asking questions on that thread still, so these two threads will be cross linked like crazy.
     
  3. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 3, 2014
    While I can see that this could be helpful and I would use it for posting stuff, I don't see it moving all that discussion from the other thread. Most times that talk comes about because of a photo or something a person said about their photo. When that's the case, I don't see people coming to this thread to ask a question about something from the other thread.

    I think the bird thread gets more talk about gear and technique because it is an area that has demands that other areas just don't have. When something about technique or gear comes to mind I will come to this thread to post it and feel there is a need to for this thread (would love for it to be a sticky, having to search for it could get people not try and just use the bird thread). I don't see it removing but maybe 1/2 (if that) of the this type of discussion from the bird thread.
     
  4. faithblinded

    faithblinded Mu-43 Top Veteran

    929
    Nov 25, 2014
    Cleveland, OH
    Ken
    I know I brought the notion up before. I never did it for the reasons Phocal explained. It's tough to keep contextual discussion in an area away from the photo that gives the context. Some of the tangents that evolve could be better spent here though.
    It might be a good idea if those of us that shoot birds seriously with m4/3, give a brief overview of what gear we use to do it, and sum up how it serves us. That could generate alot of interesting discussion, and open the field up to questions.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2015
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  5. dogs100

    dogs100 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    965
    Nov 12, 2011
    N Devon UK
    Geoff
    That would help me as I am serious about shooting birds, but not very good at it. I am making progress but any help along the way would be welcome
     
  6. macro

    macro Mu-43 Regular

    150
    Jan 22, 2012
    100% agree !!. The bird thread gets a little messy sometimes and this is a darn good idea. I was going to mention it as well, but as a fairly new kid on the block, was hesitant.

    MF with long legacy lenses, there is a few of us around and mirrorless lends itself really well to it. Then we have those experts that use AF, so we should be able to cover anything related to it in here IMO. Well worth bookmarking this thread.

    I like it and well worth a try at least.

    Danny.
     
  7. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 3, 2014
    Ok, lets see if I can move a discussion from the other thread to here.

    @Rasmus@Rasmus There is a big difference in design between a stable kayak and a speed kayak. Some of the fishing kayaks are a good blend between the two, but you always give up something when trying to make something that can perform two jobs. My kayak is not as fast as yours and it is not as stable as some of the other kayaks out there. I find it stable enough for my purpose (can stand and fish from it without fear of turning over) and fast enough to get where I want to go. It's not unusual for me to put in 10 or 12 miles in a day out on the water, just depends on what I am wanting to accomplish.

    If you want to paddle out to islands and photograph from the islands then something like what you have would be perfect. I would be a bit nervous trying to photograph from your boat. If you want to actually shoot from the kayak, then you need to find something more stable and it will be slower........not real sure how much slower, never tried to race someone but now I want to. I mostly use my kayak in lakes and rivers and have not been to the ocean in it, for lakes and rivers it is the perfect vessel. I can get covers and stuff for my to keep the water out, which I would do for ocean trips as the waves could easily flood me. My ocean trips (planning a few for this summer) will be in the shallows and marshes with no real plans to get out in the surf.

    Any other questions don't hesitate to ask.

    Ronnie
     
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  8. macro

    macro Mu-43 Regular

    150
    Jan 22, 2012
    Don't shoot me because a Sony NEX-7 is hanging on the back. The E-M10 lives there as well. Its just a different box is all and its about the lenses. Just copied from another post I have.

    Manual focus with fast long lenses: What to look for

    Generally it comes down to what you pay you get. Not always, but often enough.

    First off lets look at how they work when manual focusing.

    Looking at Canon lenses. For hand holding, resting the tripod mount in the left palm the focusing ring really needs to be toward the front of the lens. This allows for the fingers to shift the focusing ring. If however the focusing ring is behind the tripod mount, well the fingers don't like bending backwards to shift the focus ring. I don't know about you, but I'm certainly not double jointed in any of my ....... body parts and I'm too old to start practising now !!. Might take up yoga at some point, who knows.

    So Canon and Nikon did their homework on how us normal people need to move and focus manual focus tele lenses. By normal people I mean you and not necessarily myself. They placed everything rather well and they feel just right. The internal focus (that's one secret right there) is very smooth and easy. Focus has to FEEL right, it needs to be quick and precise with no slop.

    So the Canon FD 500 F/4.5L, lets have a gander at it .....

    P1210096.

    The ideal placement for the focusing ring vs the fingers to shift the focus ring. I would use a photo of my fingers in there as a guide, but they look more like an elephants foot.

    Now lets look at the same focal length from Sigma. The Sigma 500 F/4.5 APO

    DSCF0329.

    The issue here is the fingers are expected to go backward from the tripod mount to focus. My fat little fingers are just not capable. Rotating the tripod mount upward works to a certain degree, but the balance just gets so hard to hold it.

    I always like to hand hold the 500 F/4.5, so that's one issue to avoid and there is another one there as well. The Sigma is shorter than the Canon, but has a larger diameter. That makes it front heavy and feels out of balance compared to the Canon.

    Now we come to helicoid thread lenses. These lenses use a coarse thread to move the front element group for focusing. When it comes to long fast lenses and you want to hand hold the lens, PLEASE don't buy one. On a tripod they are fine, hand held and its like you need four hands to make it work.

    P1110462.

    Have to be the best engineered work of art when it comes to lenses. Amazing construction for a lens and a fluorite front element as well. Its a fantastic lens, except when it comes to using it hand held. Not going to happen. Not kidding, even the tripod mount is a work of art. The aperture ring for this lens is close to the front and its a HUGE aperture ring. The best aperture ring I've ever used. I wish all lenses had that for my clumsy hands.

    Now we come to the ....... beast. As I always say, give it to your worst enemy, sit back and enjoy the show. It will drive them nuts. Its a focal length that is hard to come to grips with on a crop sensor. Just getting the darn thing you want in the frame takes time to get use to. However, it takes shots that no other lens can. Nikkor and Canon both have excellent 800mm lenses.

    800mm.


    The Canon FD 800 F/5.6L focuses by the side knobs, one each side of the lens. It has a friction control so you can adjust the feel. With the friction control off, the focus is extremely fast. Very smooth to use. One slight flick of the knob and it goes from close to infinity in a the blink of an eye. Internal focus, so its a good one for sure.

    The Canon FD 300 F/2.8L is the cute baby in the family. Nice fast lens that is very handy on a dull day. Again Canon has this right with the focus ring vs the tripod mount. Smooth and easy internal focusing once again.

    P1210098.

    What I find with all 300 F/2.8's though, is that they are also front heavy. That F/2.8 on a dark dull day takes some beating though Hmmm, maybe a 400 F/2.8, but I couldn't afford the divorce settlement. So the 300 it is.

    So that's a few thoughts on the lenses themselves.

    The only thing that counts at the end of the day, is the image. Not the brand, not what's stamped on the box, not the format, only the image itself.

    All the best as always.

    Danny.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2015
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  9. faithblinded

    faithblinded Mu-43 Top Veteran

    929
    Nov 25, 2014
    Cleveland, OH
    Ken
    Wow great post Danny! I wouldn't mind giving those lenses a workout myself. There's something about the feel of older high end manual focus glass that can't be touched by modern electronic lenses. Manual focus is a nice level playing field too, so you can get shots as good as anything. It's just all on the photographer to develop and maintain those skills!
     
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  10. Rasmus

    Rasmus Mu-43 Top Veteran

    657
    Nov 16, 2013
    Stockholm, Sweden.
    I just wish MF lenses could produce EXIF information, I always forget all those exposure details, like if I stopped down, if I used a teleconverter, and so on...
     
  11. macro

    macro Mu-43 Regular

    150
    Jan 22, 2012
    Would be handy, but I cheat. The lenses are never stopped down ;) Always used wide open to get the high speeds.

    Danny.
     
  12. Rasmus

    Rasmus Mu-43 Top Veteran

    657
    Nov 16, 2013
    Stockholm, Sweden.
    By the way, it looks like you are using one of those pistol grip ballheads. Does it work well for bird photo?
     
  13. macro

    macro Mu-43 Regular

    150
    Jan 22, 2012
    If you get the heavier models ..... http://www.manfrotto.com/heavy-duty-grip-ball-head

    They work quite well, but its not as smooth and easy as a Gimbal head. The only lens that goes on a tripod is the 800 F/5.6 and that's always with a Gimbal head, the rest are hand held or sometimes a monopod, not often though. So that pistol grip is not really used much at all.

    Danny.
     
  14. Carbonman

    Carbonman Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jul 10, 2014
    Vancouver BC
    Graham
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  15. dogs100

    dogs100 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    965
    Nov 12, 2011
    N Devon UK
    Geoff
    help needed ...

    I have an e-m1 and my 50-200 swd needs focus tuning, I know several people here have done it so could you please direct me to the appropriate thread ... and confirm that it only affects the lens you are tuning. I am not very technically minded so it needs to be a 'fool proof' method with (hopefully) a way back if I mess up
     
  16. faithblinded

    faithblinded Mu-43 Top Veteran

    929
    Nov 25, 2014
    Cleveland, OH
    Ken
    I don't believe anyone has done a write up on focus tuning here. It's not a super complicated process, but will require some patience and a little bit of your time.
    The settings are saved in camera on a per lens basis, or a global change, whichever you prefer(former for lens alignment, latter for camera). I doubt your camera is the culprit, since the PDAF points are on sensor, so you will need to tune the lens. Should you feel the settings are unsatisfactory, a few simple button presses will reset the whole process, so no worries there.

    You'll have to decide at what focal length you wish to do the tuning. The alignment may not hold true through the entire zoom range, so it's best to tune the focus at your most used focal length. I'm assuming that's the long end.

    You can do this a couple different ways. Both ways require you to take a series of shots of the focus target, at different focus settings, which will later be analyzed to determine the optimum setting. You can save yourself some money, and use your eyes and some good old fashioned patience, to go through the shots yourself. Or you can drop a little cash and buy a copy of FocusTune, a piece of software that analyzes the shots for you, and shows you the accuracy of the results on a line graph, making it super easy to determine the best setting.
    Ok I could ramble on and on and not make things as clear as this video:

    Give that a look, and then I'll try and fill in any gaps. It's tedious, but you only need to do it once for each lens.
     
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  17. dogs100

    dogs100 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    965
    Nov 12, 2011
    N Devon UK
    Geoff
    Ken

    Thanks for the info. I will have some time this evening to look through the stuff in detail, it will probably take me some days to get to it but I will post the results

    Again, thanks

    Geoff
     
  18. macro

    macro Mu-43 Regular

    150
    Jan 22, 2012
    Something new to try.

    Okay, its not m4/3 but could be very easily and its just as capable. I'm thinking of trying this with the E-M10 with the Oly software on the phone or tablet. Chris and I have spent 2 1/2 years getting close to the Sacred Kingfisher at an estuary and now we can get pretty close to them.

    My shots are taken of the set up with a NEX-7 and Chris is using a 5D MKIII with a 24mm - something zoom. Any wide angle would do for m4/3, but you need to be very patient and we are.

    So looking at Chris's set up

    post-1-0-27459200-1374123206.


    And I was waiting with my camera with a 500 F/4.5L on it and in the KF came

    post-1-0-73414100-1374123286.

    Now the important part, the images Chris got, I like the low angles he got on these.

    post-1423-0-58157500-1374119924.

    post-1423-0-89304000-1374119998.

    Its okay, Chris won't mind me using his images, heck he uses mine enough to show the set up.

    So while not perfect, its an interesting exercise to try with m4/3 and I'll have a crack at it for sure. Pre-focus is the key and wide angle to get the DOF and have a high shutter speed set.

    All the best and its not about the boxes used in this, its about the technique.

    Danny.
     
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  19. faithblinded

    faithblinded Mu-43 Top Veteran

    929
    Nov 25, 2014
    Cleveland, OH
    Ken
    That's cool. I've done something similar in my back yard with wifi control, just to test it out. Might have to set something up in the field some time and see what I can get.
     
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  20. macro

    macro Mu-43 Regular

    150
    Jan 22, 2012
    You get some pretty unique views Ken and that really appeals with those low angles. I have to have a crack at this with the Oly for sure.

    All the best Ken and a fun idea also.

    Danny.