Extreme birding,G5 and 100-300

Started Dec 17, 2012 | Discussions thread
rrr_hhh Veteran Member • Posts: 6,022
Re: Extreme birding,G5 and 100-300

gary payne wrote:

I made the claim earlier in this thread that the 100-300mm was probably best used at f5.6 or f6.3 because it would increase shutter speed and thus resolution, and anyway, M4/3 lenses generally are sharpest at just a click tighter than wide open, according to Photozone's tests.

"rrr_hhh" then responded that the 100-300mm was different at the long end, and was sharpest at f8.

That's technically true. But looking at Photozone's otherwise excellent tests on this lens, I note that neither f6.3 nor f7.1 were tested. It is true that f8 turned out to be a bit sharper than wide open (f5.6), but the next two setting stops might have been as sharp or even more sharp than f8.

If we are talking about fast moving Birds In Flight (as we are in this thread), I suggest that the faster shutter speed from a wide open iris would pay a better dividend in sharpness than stopping down 3 clicks. In this context, movement is the real challenge.

We are usually only interested in the center 1/3 of the frame when snaping birds. I'd say f6.3 is a better compromise in good light. But in lower light, you just have to shoot wide open. The depth of field is huge, even at f5.6, unless you are shooting birds from less than 8 feet.

Yes, I said that "the 100-300mm was different at the long end, and was sharpest at f8", but also wrote that if the light allows it, shoot at F8 to get more DOF and there won't be as much disadvantages as with a usual mft lens.

But that anyway wasn't the most important thing I said. The most important thing is that for fast focusing contrast is the most important and at the 300mm end, the lens is loosing a lot of contrast. So may be it is better to shoot it at 250mm. Also boost contrast by all means.

That said, I have a bad copy of that lens, especially when focusing far away and at the long end. In fact I don't like that lens. It is too big and heavy for the IQ it is giving me at the long end and need steadier hands than I have. But even shooting it on a tripod it remains a bad lens for me.

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