Test Surfers: Observations on Panasonic G9 and 100-300 I

JensM

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I have the same lens and have had it for some years, using it somewhat sporadically, but for stuff one uses such a lens for. My exemplar is rather soft from around 260ish and out and is one of the lenses that I plan to upgrade/swap for something else in the telephoto dept. The MkII version of it, is after what I hear, a worthy upgrade if one uses a telephoto with some regularity.
 

ooheadsoo

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I thought the mk ii addressed autofocus issuese, but not the lens softness issue. It's believe it's hard to say whether it is af or lens softness at play in these images.
 

PeeBee

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I don't think the photos are too bad, but considering the size of the surfers I assume they were quite some distance away, increasing the likelihood that atmospheric haze has degraded the sharpness. I would suggest getting closer if you can, and that would be the case with any long telephoto.

I read a lot about the 100-300 being soft after 260mm, but I find mine acceptably sharp, and I almost always shoot it wide open. The main problem I have with the 100-300 is it's ability to acquire AF lock at longer focal lengths, sometimes even when the subject is static, however your G9 should perform better than anything I've paired my lens with.

A premium lens may be more forgiving, but for my use it's not worth the additional cost.
 

ac12

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I wonder if the comments about the Olympus 75-300 and Panasonic 100-300 being soft on the long end is not the lens, but reduction in sharpness due to magnification of "stuff" in the air and just more "stuff" in the air due to shooting longer distances.
 

PeeBee

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I wonder if the comments about the Olympus 75-300 and Panasonic 100-300 being soft on the long end is not the lens, but reduction in sharpness due to magnification of "stuff" in the air and just more "stuff" in the air due to shooting longer distances.
Longer focal lengths certainly have their challenges, and premium lenses may well be more forgiving due to better optics, coatings and mechanics, but I also think that people who drop vast sums for premium lenses would typically be more serious about their photography and therefore may have better experience, apply more effort and practice better technique. Obviously there would be exceptions to that rule in both directions. The consumer grade lenses will be accessible to a wider band of users, with a wider band of ability and a wider range of acceptance, so I don't think it's surprising we see more dissatisfaction within that level. Some folks get consistently good results with the consumer grade lenses whilst some don't, and I think there is more to that than sample variation.
 

ac12

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Longer focal lengths certainly have their challenges, and premium lenses may well be more forgiving due to better optics, coatings and mechanics, but I also think that people who drop vast sums for premium lenses would typically be more serious about their photography and therefore may have better experience, apply more effort and practice better technique. Obviously there would be exceptions to that rule in both directions. The consumer grade lenses will be accessible to a wider band of users, with a wider band of ability and a wider range of acceptance, so I don't think it's surprising we see more dissatisfaction within that level. Some folks get consistently good results with the consumer grade lenses whilst some don't, and I think there is more to that than sample variation.
One might be, what is "good enough?" And will that change over time?

My Nikon 18-140 was good enough for me, until I got my 70-200. Then I saw what GOOD glass delivers, and my expectations were ratcheted up. And my 18-140 dropped down and became barely "good enough," and I started looking for a better replacement.
So MY standards of what I expect out of my 18-140 changed. Same lens, I just got more critical.
 

ooheadsoo

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Forgive me if this has been asked as I haven't read the whole thread but just seen the first post. The images look somewhat like I experienced as the limbs look elongated to me? Electronic shutter used? Perhaps I'm just imagining it due to my experience with same?
These shots should have been taken with mechanical shutter only.
 
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