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Old Wednesday 12th February 2014, 20:58   #1
hoodlum
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Olympus 300mm f4

This 600mm FOV lens was announced this morning with an expected 2015 release date. This is still a long way off but is anyone else considering this?

http://www.dpreview.com/news/2014/02...-f4-pro-lenses
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Old Wednesday 12th February 2014, 22:53   #2
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Looks very promising for a small walk-about telephoto lens that can go all the way to 1200mm equivalent FL in 35mm terms when electronic TC is activated. I'll be following this lens development with great interest.
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Old Wednesday 12th February 2014, 23:18   #3
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I hope it focusses close enough for butterflies, etc.

As a 'Pro' series lens it won't be cheap but at least they've given us plenty of time to save up before it comes out!
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Old Wednesday 12th February 2014, 23:23   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adey Baker View Post
I hope it focusses close enough for butterflies, etc.

As a 'Pro' series lens it won't be cheap but at least they've given us plenty of time to save up before it comes out!
You should be able to fill most of the frame at 600mm FOV. The challenge is getting close enough to do that without it flying away.
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Old Wednesday 12th February 2014, 23:42   #5
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You should be able to fill most of the frame at 600mm FOV. The challenge is getting close enough to do that without it flying away.
The minimum focus distance will be the key. I've used a Canon-fit Sigma 400mm F5.6 Apo/Macro HSM on an APS-C body for a number of years and the minimum focus distance of 1.6m completely blows away Canon's own (otherwise excellent) 400mm F5.6L with its minimum of 3.5m as far as butterflies/dragonflies are concerned.
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Old Thursday 13th February 2014, 00:27   #6
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The Olympus 300mm f2.8 had a minimum focus of 2.0m. Hopefully it will be close to that.
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Old Thursday 13th February 2014, 02:01   #7
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Canon's own 300mm f4L IS which i own has a MFD of only 1.5m that gives superb capabilities for close-up frame-filling shooting of relatively small objects. This is due to the rear-focus design where the focusing element group is located at the rear rather than the middle of the lens. The downside of this system is for fast-moving and further objects, AF accuracy takes a beating when compared with my 400mm f5.6L lens. The latter has a worse MFD of 3.5m but can focus quickly and accurately for objects both at MFD to infinity.

That said, I hope the Olympus 300mm f4 gives great quality images, fast autofocus and tracks moving objects well. Should work well with the OM-D EM-1 that gives 6.5fps for tracking objects. Any experience with any drawbacks using the EM-1 when tracking moving objects, anyone?

And I wonder how effective IBIS would be on such a long lens, especially in comparison with Olympus's 75-300mm lens.

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Old Thursday 13th February 2014, 02:52   #8
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I would definitely consider this lens, given how good the Nikon 300mm f/4 has been in my experience. I hope it's optically excellent, and that they come out with a native m4/3 1.4x teleconverter to go with it. Either way, it definitely adds a much-needed native m4/3 telephoto prime option; the 75-300mm II is reasonably good for its size and weight, but not up to par with the Nikon 300mm f/4 or the 80-400mm AF-S.

On the other hand, given how the E-M1 works pretty well with 4/3 lenses, I really enjoy using it with the 50-200 f/2.8-3.5 SWD, so it'll be interesting to see how the 300mm f/4 stacks up to it. The 50-200 is a very reasonable size, and optically excellent, so it'll be interesting to know the size, weight, and cost of the 300mm f/4. If it's under 1000 grams, under 200mm in length, and under $2000 I'm sold.

With regard to AF tracking, the E-M1 is definitely a cut above other m4/3 bodies, although still a grade below my Nikon D7100 in terms of holding focus on flying birds. But it's still capable of getting some bird-in-flight shots. I posted some taken with the 50-200 here:

http://www.birdforum.net/showpost.ph...&postcount=104
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Old Thursday 13th February 2014, 03:40   #9
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You can see a patent for the 1.4TC here.

http://translate.google.ca/translate...6newwindow%3D1

It will likely get announced when the 40-150mm is released.
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Old Thursday 13th February 2014, 14:25   #10
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It is interesting.

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Old Thursday 13th February 2014, 19:58   #11
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Excellent! I think I will be very tempted by the Oly 300 f/4 even though I expect the autofocus capability will will not match my Nikon D7100 + 300 f/4. I'm very glad this future lens will be f/4 rather than f/2.8. Because of that, I might able to afford it. But I'm sure it will still be quite expensive. I'm guessing somewhere between $2000 - $2500 ?

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Old Thursday 13th February 2014, 23:03   #12
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Originally Posted by opticoholic View Post
...I'm very glad this future lens will be f/4 rather than f/2.8....

--Dave
Actually, with the built-in IS of Olympus bodies, I'd be more than happy with F5.6 or even F6.3 (the Olympus 75-300mm zoom is F6.7 at the long end). The physics of F4 mean a full aperture size of 75mm so the size/weight advantage of the micro 4/3rds system will be pushed to the limit with the proposed design.
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Old Thursday 13th February 2014, 23:39   #13
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...The physics of F4 mean a full aperture size of 75mm so the size/weight advantage of the micro 4/3rds system will be pushed to the limit with the proposed design.
True. And it makes me wonder, why has nobody offered a little slower f/5.6 300 or 400mm prime lens for micro-4/3 yet? Such a lens would certainly have been appealing to many. Maybe it was partly due to the fact that the continuous auto-focus in mirrorless systems is still developing, and slower/dimmer telephotos might have struggled to lock-on let alone track with subjects?

Currently I use a Nikon D7100 with the 300mm f/4 plus a 1.4X teleconverter as my "easier to carry and hand-hold" bird camera. This Olympus 300mm f/4 without any teleconverter will have almost the same "reach" or framing as my Nikon set-up, plus it would be 1 stop faster, and at least a little lighter and more compact than my Nikon rig. Even though it's more than a year off, I'm already thinking I might rent this Olympus 300mm as soon as it comes out and do a head-to-head comparison. Olympus makes outstanding lenses. Even with a little smaller sensor, it won't surprise me if the Olympus offers equal image quality on still targets. I'm sure the Nikon will do better with continuous auto-focus tracking, but how much better, especially as continuous auto-focus continues to improve in mirrorless systems? It will be interesting to see.

--Dave

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Old Friday 14th February 2014, 14:29   #14
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I agree, times are exiting. The blurb on the pana GH4 also seems to indicate improved tracking in the panasonic line. I just wonder if this oly lens will contain the data necessary to use the "defocus" mode.

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Old Saturday 15th February 2014, 09:04   #15
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any word about the price?
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Old Monday 17th February 2014, 01:32   #16
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Have not seen anything yet. More than a year before available?

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Old Monday 17th February 2014, 02:50   #17
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Yes, Neils is correct. I suspect that the lens should cost about USD1800.00 at the very least.

By the way, what is the image stabilization effectiveness of the IBIS of the OM-D EM-5 and/or EM-1 when a 300mm lens is used?
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Old Tuesday 18th February 2014, 16:50   #18
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the IBIS on my EPL5 on the Zuiko 75-300mm, is not as effective as with the OIS on the Lumix 100-300mm, but i have to admit that for video it can produce reasonably shake free recording.
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Old Wednesday 19th February 2014, 06:57   #19
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Thanks Ammadoux. I suppose that the IBIS can give about 2 stops stabilization for this lens at the best. That's why I wish it was Panasonic that came out with this lens - the OIS would be much better for longer focal lengths. Still, due to the lack of a moving mirror, the IBIS would have a slightly more effective effect compared to my 300mm f4 IS on my DSLR body due to the lack of mirror slap I guess.

By the way, does Olympus have a 1.4x or 1.5x as an intermediate magnification for its electronic teleconverter on the OM-D series? The 2x extra magnification may be too much in certain situations.
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Old Wednesday 19th February 2014, 12:46   #20
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I have seen somewhere a mention of a 1.4x physical TC being under development.

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Old Wednesday 19th February 2014, 13:05   #21
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There is a patent but none announced yet. In any case, I wonder whether an external TC would degrade the image more than using the built-in electronic TC
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Old Wednesday 19th February 2014, 13:19   #22
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the IBIS on my EPL5 on the Zuiko 75-300mm, is not as effective as with the OIS on the Lumix 100-300mm, but i have to admit that for video it can produce reasonably shake free recording.
I don't know if you have your E-PL5 set up for sequential shooting or single frame, Duha. If it is set to 'sequential' it is worth going to Menu 'Cog C' and checking the setting for 'Sequ + IS Off'. By default this is set to 'On' and this means that IBIS is switched off even if you take a single frame.

I couldn't make out why I was getting so many blurred images with my E-M1 until I discovered that the setting was set to 'On', which was cancelling out IBIS. Since turning it off my keeper rate has improved considerably.

Ron

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Old Wednesday 19th February 2014, 23:09   #23
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I don't know if you have your E-PL5 set up for sequential shooting or single frame, Duha. If it is set to 'sequential' it is worth going to Menu 'Cog C' and checking the setting for 'Sequ + IS Off'. By default this is set to 'On' and this means that IBIS is switched off even if you take a single frame.

I couldn't make out why I was getting so many blurred images with my E-M1 until I discovered that the setting was set to 'On', which was cancelling out IBIS. Since turning it off my keeper rate has improved considerably.

Ron
That's a really useful tip, Ron!

It's very easy to mis-read that one when scrolling through all the different custom settings.
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Old Wednesday 19th February 2014, 23:22   #24
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Sounds like a pretty night-marish menu!

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Old Thursday 20th February 2014, 08:48   #25
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Ron, how many stops of stabilization did you manage to get out of your EM-1 when properly enabled? Thanks!
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