Canon fd 500mm f4.5L on m43

Started Sep 25, 2019 | Discussions thread
OP kohinoor Senior Member • Posts: 1,481
Re: Canon fd 500mm f4.5L on m43

OldMax2000 wrote:

Hi K,

Thank you for the response. Your bird images are impressive and comparable to those that I have seen taken by others using the FD 500f4.5L. You answered most of my questions in those linked threads. I just bought a FD 300 f2.8L and a Pana G85. I seriously considered the FD 500 f4.5L but am still a little intimated by its size. After reviewing your images of the birds, I am thinking that my 300mm on the G85 might still not be long enough for birds and may want to get the 500mm later.

Congrats on your purchase. Very nice lens that one! If you feel you need more FL you could add the Olympus 1.4xTC ore even the 2xTC. (420mm f4 ore 600mm f5.6 is fine!) Your lens is supposed to be even sharper than mine and was more expensive when originally introduced!

I have a few more questions, if I may ask:

You're welcome!

1. What did you reply on to find the focus in the G85 with the 500f4.5L: peaking or just image clarity?

I use only the 3X magnified view. On the G80 I have the fn-button behind the shutter release set for magnify. That's the easyest one to reach without loosening the grip and without introducing shake. I usually focus first without magnification and take a quick short burst just in case the bird won't stay long enough. When the bird stays I go into magnified view for more precise focussing and shoot again. My hit rate for shots without magnification has improved quite noticeably with the bigger higher resolution viewfinder on the G9.

Initially I also tried peaking. But it can be disappointing/missleading when there is low contrast on the bird but high contrast close behind ore in front. So I gave up on it.

2. Did you use IBIS to help steady the image in the EVF when trying to focus? Does it work? I would imagine that the images would be jumping around with an effective 1400mm focal length!

IBIS is allways on except for BIF shots. I have programmed my C1,C2,C3 settings on the top dial for bare lens/ lens+tc/ BIF respectively. And even for BIF I don't switch IBIS off completely but rather use the panning setting.
IBIS is of enormous help both for aiming/composing as well as for exposure. I wouldnt want such a long manual lens without it.
Of course the pic in the viewfinder isn't as rock steady as with a genuine sync-IS lens. But when half pressing the shutter button one can clearly see how it kicks in. It changes the view from jumpy without IS to "floating around" with IS.
How ever, where it does get really tricky is when shooting 700mm and going into magnified view. -Unfortunately 3X is the lowest possible magnification both on G80 and G9. So this takes me to 4200mm equ FOV ... and that isn't steady any more, it's rather borderline. All this is for my preferred shooting with a hip-stick (steadify) as shown in one of my links. I allmost never shoot purely handheld and only about 1/3 of my shooting is with tripod. On tripod I keep IBIS on and the viewfinder stays rock steady.

3. Did the IBIS help countering the effect of equipment shake at lower shutter speed like 1/250s or 1/500s? Do you feel that you could get 4-5 stops from G85 (or G80) with such a long lens?

I allways shoot small bursts of 3-5 shots. And IBIS allways is much better than no IBIS no matter how low the SS. 
When shooting 500mm(1000 equiv) I feel comfortable shooting bursts at 1/250sec (2 stops of stabilisation) and getting about 90% sharp shots, ore 1/125 (3 stops) with about 60% hit rate. Even longer SS are possible but I need to shoot longer bursts of about 10 shots. (For shooting with tc I up the game by one stop in terms of SS.)
So 4-5 stops are possible with low to very low hit rates. But 3 stops of IS are realistic and practical.

The G80 tends to allways stay at 1/125sec SS when shooting autoISO no matter what focal length is dialed in. For me with the long lens+tc that was really annoying. But with the 300mm and even when you add a 1.4tc you should be fine with 1/125sec SS for stabilisation.

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