The Sunday BIRD Volume 9 Issue 48, May 25, 2014

Started May 25, 2014 | Photos thread
JLTaylor Senior Member • Posts: 1,069
Re: M1 firmware

Richard Pavek wrote:

Hi Everybody,

Memorial Day weekend for us in the States, a time of remembrance of the war dead and lost loved ones.
Do hope you’ll have some birding time.

NOTE: If you have the M-1 there is a new update available. Looks like a good one!

I updated my M1 to 1.4, and recommend updating. The 50mm was a great improvement, no longer running through all the gears. I think it is better on the M1 then any four thirds body. For telephotos the handling is much better. I took it out yesterday to try CAF on birds in flight. Most of shore birds have moved north, and the few that were around didn't do much flying. Shot a few gulls from a distance, a float plane, and tried for swallows. It is still harder to use then an OVF, once out of focus it is really hard to see anything on the EVF, and if it doesn't get an early lock it will still go through the full range. I think once it gets a lock it tracks better then before.

There was one goose puddle jumping, and it kept lock even with a cluttered background and obstacles in the foreground:

There was a great blue heron in the pond, but he refused to fly. Walked by me about 5 feet away. It was so focused on fishing that even getting a new battery from a zippered pouch didn't make him fly.

I was doing most of these with CAF. It needed help selecting what to focus on, and for some reason we now have CAF+tracking, but no CAF+MF. With the 2x2 switch set to select MF as a workaround, and using focus peaking it is easy to get the CAF a good starting point.

This is how close it got (uncropped). Not a heron's best side.

I wanted BIF, but I got a nice series of it fishing up close. I didn't know they ate fish this small, from a distance I thought they frequently missed.

Fraction of a second later it somehow moved the fish.

Big gulp for such a small fish. Would think it was eating a bullfrog.

Playing with it's food

The new AF firmware is a good improvement for four thirds lenses.  The EVF - mixed bag - focus peaking can really help, DOF and blackout are a disadvantage. Ultimatly I think on sensor PDAF should be the best solution for BIF because there is so much information about shape, color, size and distance for the PDAF sensors.Hopefully the development of the new 300 F4 has AF for wildlife as a major design goal. Olympus still has a ways to go.

There was enough of an improvement, and now that I have the M1 setup properly I like the handling.  Like the update enough that I decided to put a longer plate on my 300mm. The old one balanced with the E5, but not the M1.

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