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Old Thursday 14th April 2016, 23:52   #1
Binoseeker
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Focus hunting....4/3 70-300mm + DMW-MA1 + E-M1

Hello,

I used the panasonic adapter DMW-MA1 to mount the four thirds 70-300mm ED lens on my micro four thirds camera Olympus E-M1.

It doesn´t autofocus very well, keeps mostly focus hunting, and when it stops sometimes it is a bit OOF, do you know why?

Must I use the Olympus made adapter instead?

Cheers,

Anders
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Old Friday 15th April 2016, 12:59   #2
iveljay
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Performance should not change I am afraid - read the following to clarify.

http://www.apotelyt.com/photo-access...thirds-adapter

My 70-300 was never my favourite lens - it did the job on my E-slrs and it continues to be used with those I have left. I havn't tried it on my E-M1 but might, if it stops raining, to see if I have the same problems.

That reminds me - I must see if I can rebuild the screen on the back of the E-3 that fell to bits the other day - the E-30 is much better built in that area (and every other Oly I have checked) . Every few decades there is something about Olympus and plastic - the OM707 battery grips had the same problem of structural failure at critical moments - I think I owned about 8 grips across my 3 bodies in the end so I could be sure of a days shooting! It was worth it just for the quality of the images those lenses could capture. To be fair I have had some sort of design failure from most of the major manufacturers from time to time.

Last edited by iveljay : Friday 15th April 2016 at 14:06.
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Old Friday 15th April 2016, 14:04   #3
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Just done a quick trial despite the rain - E-620 vs E-M1 it does seem to hunt a bit more on the M1 - as for accuracy, I didn't shoot enough to get any errors with either. It is quite an old lens design that is feels happier with an E-slr which was what I expected - hence having never used it on the EM-1. It has been hung on the front of an M5 in the past, in bright conditions and produced sharp images, but it will go once my last slr goes. I used an Oly MMF-3 as I don't have the Panasonic equivalent but it shouldn't change anything.

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Old Friday 15th April 2016, 14:26   #4
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Thanks for the test & comments, Iveljay.

I hope i can update 70-300mm lens firmware via the e-m1, maybe that's the problem? What firmware do you have in the lens?

Is there a need for a special camera setting to use the lens?

On my e-m5 the lens was hunting, while going in one direction i could hear beep and when returning it stopped probably in the position where the beep was heard, and it was a bit OOF.

Anders
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Old Friday 15th April 2016, 15:13   #5
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I have just taken some shots of the Greenfinches on my feeder this afternoon, using the 70-300 attached to my E-M1 with the Olympus MMF-3 adapter. As can be seen, it was raining and the light was poor, so conditions were far from ideal. I didn't notice any hunting, although the focusing sounded a bit 'stuttery' as this lens is always noisy as it focuses. I have been using my 50-200 SWD on the camera over the winter and that it fast and virtually silent to focus.

I can notice the lack of sharpness with the 70-300 compared to the 50-200 (and my 75-300 II.)

Ron
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Old Friday 15th April 2016, 15:46   #6
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The firmware for this lens was last updated 02/16/2012 to Version 1.4 you can check this easily - it is the very last thing in the menu system - so don't start searching from the start. Remember that there has been an upgrade to the E-M1 firmware this year so it is worth going on line anyway. If there is a firmware update for lens and camera remember to do both seperately - if you just tell the system to update it will just do the camera!

The hunting on the E-M1 is not as bad as some other camera/lenses I have used in the past - one non-Oly camera and lens drove me nuts. It does seem to take longer to settle than on an slr - it isn't instant on either. My lens hits an approximate focus point as fast as its focussing motor will run, however it seems to be stuttering at the end - sort of micro hunting to get exact focus. Its this final bit that takes longer on the M1.

Ideally - do not shoot this lens wide open as it will sharpen up if stopped down slightly - difficult in this climate - for the test I was using ISO 2000 on both cameras at full aperture, with IS and leaning against a doorpost - my subject was bits of undergrowth - highly exotic but good enough to test the lens and see any obvious focus errors!

My only 'quirk' is that all my cameras are set for single point centre focussing with a small target. Hangover from my film days, as I can work faster that way and the small target avoids the problem with nearby foliage affecting my focus.

Ordinarily I would go out and shoot my own greenfinch to compare, but my feeders are down at the moment as I am re-doing that bit of garden.

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Old Friday 15th April 2016, 20:17   #7
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I checked the lens and it has version 1.4.

Maybe Olympus can update MFT camera firmware för better FT lens performance.....or maybe make a FT lens firmware version with focus on use with MFT cameras....to chose for those with that kind of preference.

Well since Olympus seems environmentally friendly by selling an adapter supporting older FT lenses use on MFT cameras we can only hope they will do the best to improve that functionality....so we don´t get focus hunting and no OOF, please....
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Old Saturday 16th April 2016, 18:30   #8
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Evidence from previous Olympus lenses is that it would probably need a hardware change for any meaningful improvement as they did for the 14-54 zoom.

The later E-slr lenses are relatively fast focussers on the E-M1, and they are the ones used on the E-M1 by me though less now than in the past.

I would imagine that the number of 70-300 in real use still must be very small (it is about 9 years since it was released) which is why I have just finished getting my E-3 functional again for these older lenses and to be honest my other slr lenses as they get replaced.

One reviewer did find difficulty achieving accurate auto focus with test charts but found it accurate in real life situations, make what we cam of that!
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Old Saturday 16th April 2016, 21:08   #9
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I have tested the FT 10-300mm lens on my E-620 and it is focus hunting a lot.
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Old Tuesday 19th April 2016, 09:57   #10
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One thing I have noticed is that if I am finding it difficult to hold it steady enough, honestly not the booze, it has quite an effect on its ability to stabilise on a focussing point, hunts quite a bit and may pick an incorrect point of focus. (E-620) A bit of strenuous walking is enough to throw me off enough to upset it.

After that I took a couple of shots on a tripod with IS off and that speeded it up a lot with no errors.

Finally repeated with an E-3 seems faster than the E620. A much more stable camera to hold and possibly a better AF system.

As noted in some reviews when it first came out, it is far faster focussing if it is approximately in the right zone when it starts. Otherwise it goes through a preliminary trundle.

If I am using it, I cant think of an occasion when I wasn't using a monopod.

In digital terms it is a very old design, Olympus have even issued the Mk II version of the 75-300 which I must get someday - perhaps.

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Old Tuesday 19th April 2016, 23:25   #11
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For you who need improved AF performance with the ED 70-300mm on E-xxx and E-Mx cameras, send an e-mail to olympus, maybe they will do something about it if they get more requests, ...i sent an e-mail today
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Old Wednesday 18th May 2016, 10:34   #12
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This thread caused me to finally take the plunge and I replaced the 70-300 by the mft 75-300 - on the E-M1 the difference in focus speed feels incredible - the lack of noise probably helps! Not really used in anger yet

As there is a cashback offer I replaced the macro as well, the in-camera focus stacking, once I worked out how to set it up, is great. The full size 4/3 bodies are gone and only three pro lenses retained.

OK a bit expensive, but the big E series + battery grips weighed a ton to lug around and it was getting to the stage where I wasn't using them for that reason. Another bonus was one less variation in battery to store, since many date back to the E-1 E-300 era they were getting a little ancient, though none of the Olympus originals had got to the stage of not being good enough to keep. Full marks as with several battery grips I was at one stage running numbers of them in double figures + of course the rather excellent special battery for the E-1 grip.

This thread resulted in the end of an era.
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