Unveiling (E-P3?) technology

Discussion in 'Micro 4/3 News and Rumors' started by Antozone, Jun 28, 2011.

  1. Antozone

    Antozone Mu-43 Rookie

    22
    Dec 18, 2010
    Jakarta, Indonesia
  2. Pan Korop

    Pan Korop Mu-43 Veteran

    479
    Mar 31, 2011
    Phare Ouest
    Interesting: predictive CDAF using IR focus shift.

    Good for my wallet (mortgage, rather): no point I adapt a Zeiss Superachromat, with its stupid synced RGB+IR ;)

    Source undescribed: patent application from Olympus... or leaked Powerpoint slide for the upcoming sales pitch?

    E-P3 application seems premature, but I'm a bit of a Zaporog cossack: disbeliever until hands on...
     
  3. Antozone

    Antozone Mu-43 Rookie

    22
    Dec 18, 2010
    Jakarta, Indonesia
  4. Brian Mosley

    Brian Mosley Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Great find Antozone, just off to wrap my head around the technical description!

    Cheers

    Brian
     
  5. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    Boston
    I thought this was all just silly nonsense. I hoped for the best, of course, but was highly skeptical. If this works, then it's a phenomenal breakthrough. It might finally threaten my DSLR's place in my kit.

    It'll be very interesting...
     
  6. SRHEdD

    SRHEdD Mu-43 Top Veteran

    967
    Feb 24, 2011
    Viera, Florida USA
    Steve
    I read quickly, but could one assume that the first imaging process could be turned off to capture only the second (IR)? Or the processing be reversed for IR?
     
  7. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    Jason
    Well, if that is the case, it seems dissappointing for people who have older mFT lenses, and there isn't a way to get faster focusing out of them. I'm all about new tech, but it looks like Olympus decided not to make themselves backwards compatable to old lenses. I really shouldn't say old, either. I should say any lens made before this new tech for micro-four thirds. That also might mean panasonic lenses can't use this tech if they put IR coatings on their lenses. Olympus really needs to find away to make advances with thier "system" by keeping it modular. Anyone know if they are designing a new kit lens with the IR coating removed? I love my PEN, but its hard to "buy in" if lenses and bodies just can't seem to us the latest tech as bodies evolve. Panasonic I think does have this down.

    I can see how this new tech would make tracking easier. All that has to be figured out is an IR signature and as it moves in the frame, just keep focus on that signature. The first step of tracking is figuring out what is supposed to be in focus and how to distinguish it from the rest of the image as the subject moves.
     
  8. Brian Mosley

    Brian Mosley Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    It looks like Olympus are pushing the boundaries, with a completely new approach to focusing and possibly other advantages to this sensor technology... not long to wait and we should know the full details and most importantly, what kind of image quality to expect.

    Cheers

    Brian
     
  9. Pan Korop

    Pan Korop Mu-43 Veteran

    479
    Mar 31, 2011
    Phare Ouest
    Don't get you... Most every lens, esp. Old lets enough IR through. With silicon sensors, IR is normally a nuisance, dealt with at the pre-sensor filter level. The problem with lenses is not getting IR through, but some blue light! Check the noise levels of your shots by flipping through the R, G, B layers...
    From what I read of the Google patent description, one could get the same by comparing R and B focus, except with a Bayer matrix (RG/Gb square) these are not on the same location, and the G sensitive sites have double their spatial density. Of course, a Foveon-based camera, like Sigma (for consumers), would make this sampling simpler.
    As for the feasability of double G microlenses and photosites, the Fuji S5 Pro CCD already demonstrated it and applied to higher dynamics.

    Still not holding my breath for the E-P3...
     
  10. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Remember that Olympus makes a lot of different optical and imaging devices besides cameras. It would be cool if this was for the E-P3 and E-PL3, but I wouldn't be so sure.
     
  11. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    Jason
    A couple of things from looking at the patent/forum post..

    1. Special coating for a band of IR with the new lenses. Old lenses don't have that coating.

    2. From the forum post: "5) New lens: Coating should allow IR band to enter the sensor. Previously, Olympus patented special glass (in 2002) and coating (in 2008) to block IR band completely." This implies that current Olympus mFT lenses have coatings to block IR.
     
  12. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Olympus has already been working on improving AF speed on all lenses. The latest E-PL2 has a significant boost in AF speed over previous models like the E-P2, and from what I can tell seems to match the Panasonic speed.

    So what if Olympus introduces a new technology which will mostly benefit new lenses? That doesn't make their old technology obsolete. It's still there, and it's still working for us.
     
  13. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    Jason
    Its funny, I was talking with a co-worker about "obsolescence" just yesterday. We were talking about the finer points between 3G and 4G cellphone technology.

    In general, obsolescence has to do with perception. While I used the term obsolete, what I am really talking about is obsolescene. You are correct in that the old lenses still work. Obsolete implies they won't. But in my opinion, especially with how fast technology grows, a product goes from obsolescence to obsolete real quick. In many cases, they are the same thing. Is the original Ipad obsolete? No. Is it perceived that way? You bet.

    I also don't think I'd have as much issue with it is if Olympus' AF technology early on was adequate, but it wasn't. I do think the E-PL2 with its kit lens is adequate or even more than adequate, but that is a generation later with a new lens. In some ways, I do feel bad for the early E-PL2 buyers.

    Lets look at Pansonic. Lets say I had an older body with the newer kit lens(AFAIK, only made cheaper, not faster AF) and I slapped it on a GH2 or G3 body. I'm not giving up anything in AF speed.

    So, as a buyer, where does that put me? If I buy Olympus lenses and bodies, I fear that I can't get the best AF down the road because of lens redesign. I hold out until the tech actually last for a while and the lenses don't get redesigned for a while.

    In two years, we've seen the kit lens redesigned and MSC motors added to the lenses. Now we have another change in lens design in that same span. It is great that Olympus is moving forward, but it also makes buyers cautious about investing into a system.
     
  14. Brian Mosley

    Brian Mosley Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Hi Djarum,

    there's an interesting point of view regarding investment here, unfortunately we are living in a consumer society... the accelerating pace of technology (dual core processors are being used to implement this new focusing method - maybe not viable previously) is exacerbating the problem of stuff being superseded.

    I guess you just have to focus on the photography, and only on the technology when you're ready to upgrade.

    I decided not to buy an iPad, expecting the iPad 2 to be irresistible - but amazingly, the iPad 2 still had the same low resolution screen... guess I'll continue waiting, and in the meantime have realised that the Dell Streak running Android gives me far better functionality for my needs.

    Cheers

    Brian
     
  15. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    Jason
    Brian,

    I've been posting to that forum. Again, I'm playing devil's advocate here. As far as investment goes, sometimes its not about making money on purchasing something, its about not having to spend money too soon in the future for planned (or unplanned) obsolescence. We are also talking about an AF that was barely adequate in the first place, at least with the E-P1. Then the E-Pl2 comes out with a faster kit lens that basically catches up to the panasonic G1and kit lens. Most users of Olympus and their lenses want faster AF with the lenses they have, not with new ones. I love my 17mm. I want faster focusing with that lens, not a new one that might be larger or have different optical qualities.

    We also aren't talking about a single device, either. We are talking about a system. Most consumer technology is a single device. The only example I could think of is screen resolution. Typically this might require an upgrade in video card or computer to achieve higher resolution. To get the full benefit of higher resolution, both monitor and video card has to be upgraded.

    My take on this is that Olympus tried to get into this game a bit to early. But they needed the money from the revenue of the E-P1/E-P2 to get the ball rolling. They also catered to 4/3 users with better 4/3 campatablity than Panasonic. They had slower AF than the competition, and tried to put in MSC motors in the lenses that came after the first few mFT lenses they made. Then just recently they redesigned the kit lens to AF with an MSC lens and E-PL2 which was a step in the right direction. Panasonic releases the GH2/G3 with fast AF, almost up to PDAF(keep in mind their lenses focus faster on these bodies without the need for new lenses). Olympus figures they have to do something. They realize that they can master AF by playing with IR wavelengths. I also guess that this has been in the works for a while. Obviously they know that this means that lenses with IR blocking coatings won't work. They also feel that this is the best solution for AF in MFT and that in the long run, the system is better for it. They may or may not have realized that they probably should have designed the AF from the ground up in the first place. New customers will benifit from the advancements. Customers who want to just buy a new body won't, unlike Panasonics current approach.

    In some ways I applaud Olympus. Finally they are moving forward. In some ways their design approach in the beginning was flawed, and probably had to do more with R&D and time to market.
     
  16. everythingsablur

    everythingsablur Mu-43 Veteran

    412
    Aug 4, 2010
    Toronto, ON
    Unfortunate as it sounds, that does play up to the rumours that the AF speeds are predominantly achieved only with newer lenses.
     
  17. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    YAY! That means I won't need to waste more money on a new body, so soon after purchasing the latest one! :2thumbs:
     
  18. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Steve
    :43:is fairly new in the scheme of things, so growing pains will happen. It is hard if you discover a new technology for improvement in AF and there is simply no way to make the improvement work with old lenses. What could they do? It's silly not to use the new approach if it's a big advance, especially if the old stuff doesn't work any worse. Back compatibility is a balancing act and :43: is too new for the Olympus to be conservative. JMHO