What inexpensive telephoto lens?

Started 3 months ago | Discussions thread
Astrotripper Veteran Member • Posts: 8,287
Re: Not too promising

wb2trf wrote:

However, the resolution gain just doesn't seem to be there and I don't think it is the lens. Here are crops of two shots, one with the Oly and one with the Canon SX-50. Both are handheld. This test does not lead me to want to spend more money on continuing this experiment. To bother with this I'd need to believe I was chasing some big improvement. I can imagine, however, that the upcoming 400mm lens may show up better than this.

No doubt about that. It supposedly uses the optical formula of the excellent Sigma 100-400 and judging how well that performs, I would even expect it to outperform Panasonic's 100-400 (which is very good, at least the copy I used was).

So, I'll wait and see what the size and price of that are.

All the rumors and leaks say big heavy and expensive.

(Apart from cropping to the test chart I haven't tweaked these, just to avoid one more variable.) These were both taken at about 40 feet in bright light, which is fairly typical for my bird/animal shooting, except for grizzlies which I always want to be further away.

Anyone want to chime in? Do you think that the Oly 75-300mm in such a test would beat the SX-50 by enough to make this a worthwhile venture?

Crop of Oly e-m10 image at 300mm 5.6 with Canon FD MF lens

Unfortunately, this is quite typical of legacy film era lenses (I got a few teles that produce this kind of images). A bit of a shame, I would expect a better result from a Canon lens. But I guess if it's not an L model, it's just like any other legacy lens.

Yes, Oly 75-300 would do better than this. How much better depends on your luck. I've seen some quite seriously bad quality out of that lens, but I've also seen people getting surprisingly good image quality out of one. I used one for a few days and it was actually pretty good.

As for the above test, keep in mind that Canon bakes in a lot of corrections into the final image, but with a legacy lens on Olympus you get exactly what the lens produces. With a native Olympus lens like 75-300, the camera would also correct some of the aberrations (CA and distortion).

And while I'm convinced that Oly 75-300 would outperform your SX50*, your mileage may vary.

* Based simply on physics, the effects of diffraction on SX50 at the longest FL are similar to what you get with Olympus at f/20. I guarantee you that at f/20, Oly 75-300 will perform worse than even wide open. You can check how image quality would look like by using any lens on Olympus and stopping it down to f/20, since every lens would performs equally badly at that aperture.

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