What is the best m43 for focus tracking?

Started Mar 31, 2013 | Questions thread
JamieTux
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Examples (posted with images but added links as flickr and dpreview do not want to play today)
In reply to clengman, Apr 1, 2013

clengman wrote:

I see the discussions of "focus tracking" a lot and I wonder when this is actually useful. As Mick, Anders and axlotl pointed out there's a big difference between C-AF (which seems to be very good in all the newer m43 cameras), and C-AF with tracking.

To take the commonly cited examples; sports, kids playing, and flying birds, why is the tracking part really useful? Why would you want to keep the camera absolutely still and rely on the camera to follow the subject. Seems to me that it's preferable to track the subject by panning the camera. As long as you can keep the AF box on your subject, an E-M5 (or even an E-PL3 or G3 and all subsequent cameras from what I understand) should do just fine in C-AF mode at keeping whatever is in the focus box in focus.

C-AF with tracking seems like a separate issue. Whether it's a CDAF or PDAF camera it still requires some sophisticated software dedicated to object recognition. (i.e. determining that a particular patch of light projected on the sensor represents a discrete, permanent object and then following it even as it's color, luminance, shape and size change.) This is more a machine vision problem and not a focusing problem. Are there really any cameras that are good at that?

I thought it might be easier to show you what I personally have used it for in the past (I always had it set to me chosing the starting point and the camera being able to track one or two focus points in either direction) 
Here I could start the focus on his eye and the camera tracked it around the frame (on the full size version you can see the plane of focus by the clear raindrops too

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamestux/2915254181/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamestux/5946593045/in/photostream

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamestux/6344605821/in/photostream

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamestux/5725597739/in/photostream

I hope that gives a feel for it Fortunately I don't get paid to take pictures of birds, I just find it relaxing so not having tracking is not a huge issue for me - I'd just prefer to have the best I can (just in case)
As a final one though - here's my trying AF-C with tracking on the OM-D:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamestux/8607123576/in/photostream

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