Canon FD500/4.5L for birds and wildlife

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Uladzimir Forum Member • Posts: 63
Canon FD500/4.5L for birds and wildlife
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Hi,
just wanted to share my thoughts on using old manual focus FD 500/4.5L with EM1iii for birds. I bought EM1iii just a few weeks ago, no prior m43 experience, some limited Canon long tele experience. Took the lens out a few times already and have some photos to share.
In short, it is possible to shoot handheld for a couple of hours if you can often find something to lean on, like a tree, for example. I get just a few keepers per one outing (couple of hours of walking in the woods) which is fine by me. I set my shutter speed at 1/500 or faster, aperture is wide open mostly, auto ISO, H low, IBIS auto. Focusing manually is a bit tricky of course, so far I do this: lean on a tree (when possible, I would swivel lens tripod mount towards a tree and kind of push it against a tree finding a stable position, then find a bird with a viewfinder and focus, then magnify the view to x3 (or x5, harder to use), fine tune the focus, shoot a short sequence, refocus, shoot, repeat, have some rest. The IBIS does the job well in this kind of shooting. If I have to shoot really handheld without leaning on something it gets harder to focus and IBIS is struggling to keep the image stable. But I did get a few keepers even this way, so it is possible, and I feel like I am improving each time a bit. It also helps when the bird is bigger than a walnut. But I'm really thinking about a monopod, might be useful if I find one long enough for shooting when pointing up a bit.
And some birds, these are crops ranging from around 4Mpix to around 12Mpix. Converted from raw with DXO, very impressed overall and especially with highlight recovery and noise reduction tools.

Pentax X-5
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