WW2 (Prop Plane) Airshow with RF100-500 and R5

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Karl_Guttag Senior Member • Posts: 1,152
WW2 (Prop Plane) Airshow with RF100-500 and R5
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This thread is both to help me and maybe others. I've been to a few air shows, including one at Duxford UK (incredible). But I didn't have great equipment at the shows.

Next week, there is a pretty good size show with a B-29, B-24, Mustang, and C-47 amount others.  I'm loaded for bear with the R5, RF100-500, 1.4x TC, RF15-35, RF24-70 (I will probably leave the RF70-200f2.8 at home).  I should be able to get pretty close when the planes are on the ground, so I'm bringing the wider lenses (I might throw in the 24-240 for "walking around").

A few of the planes were at a small fly-in-type show last week, and I thought I should practice. Frankly, I was very disappointed with my hit rate. Maybe a dozen OK but not great shots in terms of motion blur on take-off runs out of 1,000), but then that is why I did a practice run.

I used high-speed burst with electronic-first-curtain and all electronics shutter, and I tried the 100-500 with IS modes 1 and 2. I'm wondering if IS mode 3 would have worked better.

I want to keep the shutter speed in the 1/100th to 1/200th range to get some prop blur, which is what makes this challenging.  With the 100-500 and close access to the runway, a plane can fill the FOV, and the R5's resolution will show any motion blur.

I was able to "save" quite a few shots using Topaz Sharpening. My "flow" was to use DxO PL4 with DeepPrime for RAW conversion, follow by Topaz Sharpening to fix the motion blur.

The advantage of using an electronic shutter (as someone on these forums suggested) is that you can shoot at a higher burst speed and it is easier to track. The rolling shutter caused still things (like buildings) to tilt, but it was easy to remove the tilt.

I understand a good part of this is technique and practice. After my last shoot, I saw a video that said to swivel the whole body and not just your arms and to try and lock your vision on a point on the airplane (sorry I can't find it again).  I'm also wondering if a monopod would help.

Any other tips for shooting prop planes would be appreciated

B-29 Using DxO followed by Topaz Motion Blur R5-RF100-500 + 1.4x TC IS mode 1 and  Electronic First Curtain

Same shot with out of camera JPG (shot dual RAW and JPEG) -- Slightly blurry at full res.   Note, I was too close to be using the TC, but this was the first takeoff of the day.

With Topaz  R5, 100-500, IS Mode 2 Electronic 1st Curtain

Same shot no Topaz (one of the better ones for lack blur that I took, still looked better after Topaz).

The B24 made a 2nd take-off. This time Electronic Shutter - Note white building tilting   (with Topaz to reduce motion blur).

After simple/easy Transform correction. All it took was to slide the top of the transform to straighten the building.

 Karl_Guttag's gear list:Karl_Guttag's gear list
Canon EOS R5 Canon RF 15-35mm F2.8L IS USM Canon RF 24-70mm F2.8L IS USM Canon RF 70-200mm F2.8L IS USM Canon RF 24-240mm F4-6.3 +13 more
Canon EOS R5
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