M4/3 reliable sports camera?

Started Dec 31, 2019 | Discussions
dav
dav Regular Member • Posts: 448
Re: thanks everyone!
1

Retzius wrote:

Thanks for the replies everyone. You gave me lots too think about. I think I am going to rent an em1x, 40-150, and 300 and shoot with them at State Cup mid January to see the results I get before I make the switch.

Make sure you have it at least a week pre cup to get used to it and get it setup correctly.

plenty of good info from owners here on specific caf settings that need to be right to get the best out of it for sports and action type shooting.

-- hide signature --

Cheers
Dave

Rocky ID Olympian
Rocky ID Olympian Contributing Member • Posts: 765
Good decission

... and looking forward to see your shots and hearing your thoughts about the camera

-- hide signature --

Rocky Pesik

 Rocky ID Olympian's gear list:Rocky ID Olympian's gear list
Olympus E-300 Olympus E-M1 II Olympus OM-D E-M1X Olympus PEN-F Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-50mm 1:3.5-6.3 EZ +17 more
DLBlack Forum Pro • Posts: 15,005
Re: thanks everyone!
2

It takes time to learn and setup the E-M1X to gets the best performance out of it.

 DLBlack's gear list:DLBlack's gear list
Pentax K-5 Pentax K-7 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-M1 Olympus E-M5 II +40 more
rsmithgi Senior Member • Posts: 2,374
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera?

Skeeterbytes wrote:

Tried uploading some shots last night but DPR was utterly borked. Let's see... Okay, seems to be working. I shot a match yesterday.

E-M1ii+40-150 Pro

E-M1ii+40-150 Pro

I'll try some newer 300 Pro samples later. This is with the E-M1 mk1.

E-M1+300 Pro

Cheers,

Rick

I seem to remember that you have posting your AF settings for soccer on the E-M1.2. I have been using an E-M1.1 for several years. I recently purchased an E-M5.3 and want to try it out for soccer. The AF system is more similar to the E-M1.2 and wonder if you could share your settings again.

BTW, my son is in his last year of soccer so the choice of the E-M5.3 over an E-M1.2 was based on the size for future travel and other uses. I will be keeping the E-M1.1 until at least the end of the season, but I a looking to give the E-M5.3 a shot this weekend.

thanks.

 rsmithgi's gear list:rsmithgi's gear list
Olympus PEN E-P5 Olympus E-M1 Olympus E-M5 III Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45mm F1.8 Panasonic Lumix G Vario HD 12-32mm F3.5-5.6 Mega OIS +6 more
Bassam Guy Senior Member • Posts: 2,716
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera?
1

rsmithgi wrote:

Skeeterbytes wrote:

Tried uploading some shots last night but DPR was utterly borked. Let's see... Okay, seems to be working. I shot a match yesterday.

I'll try some newer 300 Pro samples later. This is with the E-M1 mk1.

Cheers,

Rick

I seem to remember that you have posting your AF settings for soccer on the E-M1.2. I have been using an E-M1.1 for several years. I recently purchased an E-M5.3 and want to try it out for soccer. The AF system is more similar to the E-M1.2 and wonder if you could share your settings again.

BTW, my son is in his last year of soccer so the choice of the E-M5.3 over an E-M1.2 was based on the size for future travel and other uses. I will be keeping the E-M1.1 until at least the end of the season, but I a looking to give the E-M5.3 a shot this weekend.

thanks.

I have both the E-M5 II and III. The AF on the III is far superior for sports than the II - PDAF.

This was the first opportunity I had to shoot sports with the E-M5 III. Out of 231 shots, I have 210 keepers. The AF is that much better with the III. I used C-AF + Tracking.

 Bassam Guy's gear list:Bassam Guy's gear list
Olympus E-M5 II Olympus E-M5 III Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12mm 1:2 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 17mm F1.8 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 25mm F1.8 +5 more
rsmithgi Senior Member • Posts: 2,374
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera?

Bassam Guy wrote:

rsmithgi wrote:

Skeeterbytes wrote:

Tried uploading some shots last night but DPR was utterly borked. Let's see... Okay, seems to be working. I shot a match yesterday.

I'll try some newer 300 Pro samples later. This is with the E-M1 mk1.

Cheers,

Rick

I seem to remember that you have posting your AF settings for soccer on the E-M1.2. I have been using an E-M1.1 for several years. I recently purchased an E-M5.3 and want to try it out for soccer. The AF system is more similar to the E-M1.2 and wonder if you could share your settings again.

BTW, my son is in his last year of soccer so the choice of the E-M5.3 over an E-M1.2 was based on the size for future travel and other uses. I will be keeping the E-M1.1 until at least the end of the season, but I a looking to give the E-M5.3 a shot this weekend.

thanks.

I have both the E-M5 II and III. The AF on the III is far superior for sports than the II - PDAF.

This was the first opportunity I had to shoot sports with the E-M5 III. Out of 231 shots, I have 210 keepers. The AF is that much better with the III. I used C-AF + Tracking.

For me it is a comparison between the E-M1.1 and the E-M5.3. The E-M1.1 has 9 FPS and less viewfinder blackout. The E-M5.3 has the better AF system. I get good results with the E-M1.1 and I am wondering about the optimum settings for the E-M5.3 (which should be the same as the E-M1.2.

 rsmithgi's gear list:rsmithgi's gear list
Olympus PEN E-P5 Olympus E-M1 Olympus E-M5 III Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45mm F1.8 Panasonic Lumix G Vario HD 12-32mm F3.5-5.6 Mega OIS +6 more
Skeeterbytes Forum Pro • Posts: 19,448
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera?

Soccer seems like a lifetime ago. As it turned out, COVID and graduation combined to have me off the pitch completely now and I'm envious of folks who have the chance to return. Next year?

I do not know the E-M5iii and will assume it has most of the E-M1ii features but with lower burst rates. I used C-AF lock on high with E-M1 I tend to keep it at 0 with the M1ii unless there is no fencing or clutter around the field, then +1 or even +2 can be better. Keep in mind AF jumps to other players more readily on higher settings so a few more OOF shots can be better than focus jumping to the wrong kid for an entire sequence. (Under-documented feature is C-AF bursts apply AI to learn and follow the subject during a sequence.)

I keep release priority off. AF pattern selection varies, again informed by the conditions surrounding the field. All-points is interesting because you see which focus points are engaged in real time. Do try it.

I have never mastered center start and center priority, imported from the E-M1X, but they do have an influence on AF behavior and I encourage experimenting.

C-AF Mode 3, am not a BBF guy.

Drive set to anti-shock low to retain focus during bursts. Silent shutter will show some rolling shutter effects, although with soccer it's not very intrusive. Frame rate is the main area the M5iii can't match the M1ii, but still reasonable.

If the M5iii is truly on par with the M1ii you'll really enjoy the update. I became a fan really quickly.

Good luck!

Rick

-- hide signature --

Equivalence and diffraction-free since 2009.
You can be too; ask about our 12-step program.

rsmithgi Senior Member • Posts: 2,374
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera?
1

Skeeterbytes wrote:

Soccer seems like a lifetime ago. As it turned out, COVID and graduation combined to have me off the pitch completely now and I'm envious of folks who have the chance to return. Next year?

I do not know the E-M5iii and will assume it has most of the E-M1ii features but with lower burst rates. I used C-AF lock on high with E-M1 I tend to keep it at 0 with the M1ii unless there is no fencing or clutter around the field, then +1 or even +2 can be better. Keep in mind AF jumps to other players more readily on higher settings so a few more OOF shots can be better than focus jumping to the wrong kid for an entire sequence. (Under-documented feature is C-AF bursts apply AI to learn and follow the subject during a sequence.)

I keep release priority off. AF pattern selection varies, again informed by the conditions surrounding the field. All-points is interesting because you see which focus points are engaged in real time. Do try it.

I have never mastered center start and center priority, imported from the E-M1X, but they do have an influence on AF behavior and I encourage experimenting.

C-AF Mode 3, am not a BBF guy.

Drive set to anti-shock low to retain focus during bursts. Silent shutter will show some rolling shutter effects, although with soccer it's not very intrusive. Frame rate is the main area the M5iii can't match the M1ii, but still reasonable.

If the M5iii is truly on par with the M1ii you'll really enjoy the update. I became a fan really quickly.

Good luck!

Rick

Thank you for the information. My son has been pretty lucky with soccer. His club got back to practices, then scrimmages pretty early on as Virginia started relaxing restrictions last spring. His club extended the season well into the summer to make up for the lost time early in the year. Soccer here is pretty much year round except for a month long break from mid December to mid January and another break in the summer (unless you play summer soccer).

C-AF sensitivity information is mainly what I was looking for. Here are a few shots from a recent game. Typically I am able to be on the sideline or behind the end line. Fields are either high school stadium fields (first two) or field complexes with nearby parking lots, spectators on the sideline, and adjacent fields. How would you set sensitivity in conditions like this?

 rsmithgi's gear list:rsmithgi's gear list
Olympus PEN E-P5 Olympus E-M1 Olympus E-M5 III Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45mm F1.8 Panasonic Lumix G Vario HD 12-32mm F3.5-5.6 Mega OIS +6 more
Skeeterbytes Forum Pro • Posts: 19,448
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera?

rsmithgi wrote:

Thank you for the information. My son has been pretty lucky with soccer. His club got back to practices, then scrimmages pretty early on as Virginia started relaxing restrictions last spring. His club extended the season well into the summer to make up for the lost time early in the year. Soccer here is pretty much year round except for a month long break from mid December to mid January and another break in the summer (unless you play summer soccer).

C-AF sensitivity information is mainly what I was looking for. Here are a few shots from a recent game. Typically I am able to be on the sideline or behind the end line. Fields are either high school stadium fields (first two) or field complexes with nearby parking lots, spectators on the sideline, and adjacent fields. How would you set sensitivity in conditions like this?

For these I'd try C-AF lock +1 because there's nobody crossing in front. Focus pattern: I'd start with 3x3 or 5x5 with the caution the action won't always in the frame center. Want to try all points on the new camera because it seems more responsive than the M1ii. Can get overwhelmed when too many players are in the frame, though.

The background stuff becomes an issue shooting across the pitch with longer FLs. Chainlink with slats inserted gets my vote as "favorite" AF distraction. Hate the stuff. Also, cars parked nearby when there's no fencing. "Hey, nice grill." Should I mention the net? AF loves the net.

The camera is pretty good at staying on target during burst sequences because it has some learning capability--just not to the level of the M1X AI modes. A higher lock value reduces focus "breathing" (higher keeper rate) but at potential cost of jumping to crossing players.

Glad you son was able to play. My kid's post-HS winter and spring league dissolved and did not return. A couple practices and then nothing. As fate had it, her HS soccer party was our last normal social event.

Cheers,

Rick

-- hide signature --

Equivalence and diffraction-free since 2009.
You can be too; ask about our 12-step program.

Barry Stewart
Barry Stewart Veteran Member • Posts: 9,128
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera? Chain link
1

Skeeterbytes wrote:

Chainlink with slats inserted gets my vote as "favorite" AF distraction. Hate the stuff. Also, cars parked nearby when there's no fencing. "Hey, nice grill." Should I mention the net? AF loves the net.

Some time ago, I wrote a post on how I'd like to be able to tell my camera: "If you EVER see chain link fence, car grilles, or goal netting, DO NOT even THINK of AF-ing on it" or "Only focus on the

The idea didn't get much love, with most responses leaning toward, "Suck it up and don't blame your camera."

My thinking is that camera automation is designed to make our photography better — but when it comes to chain link, grilles and netting: Oly cameras actually make the photography worse. The "intelligent subject detection" that was injected into the E-M1X gave me hope that my dream will one day be fulfilled... though perhaps not by Olympus and its new owner.

-- hide signature --

Barry

 Barry Stewart's gear list:Barry Stewart's gear list
Olympus C-5060 Wide Zoom Olympus PEN E-PL5 Olympus E-1 Olympus E-M1 Olympus E-M5 II +10 more
Skeeterbytes Forum Pro • Posts: 19,448
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera? Chain link

Barry Stewart wrote:

Skeeterbytes wrote:

Chainlink with slats inserted gets my vote as "favorite" AF distraction. Hate the stuff. Also, cars parked nearby when there's no fencing. "Hey, nice grill." Should I mention the net? AF loves the net.

Some time ago, I wrote a post on how I'd like to be able to tell my camera: "If you EVER see chain link fence, car grilles, or goal netting, DO NOT even THINK of AF-ing on it" or "Only focus on the

The idea didn't get much love, with most responses leaning toward, "Suck it up and don't blame your camera."

My thinking is that camera automation is designed to make our photography better — but when it comes to chain link, grilles and netting: Oly cameras actually make the photography worse. The "intelligent subject detection" that was injected into the E-M1X gave me hope that my dream will one day be fulfilled... though perhaps not by Olympus and its new owner.

Hi Barry,

AI lends credibility to the possibility through what my professional nerd brother calls SMOP--simple matter of programming. I should think it's plausible and inherently attractive for a new M1X sports mode. For that matter, the motorsports mode could benefit since grandstands are sometimes protected by fencing. Foul-ball netting in baseball parks, endzone netting in American football parks, the goal net for soccer, hockey and the like, all present a barrier it would be handy to shoot thorough using AF rather than manually prefocusing.

Chainlink, of course, will pull focus behind the action and the general C-AF function would benefit from a toggle instructing it to ignore the stuff.

I'll grudgingly allow that it happens less than it once did in my C-AF burst sequences.

cheers,

Rick

-- hide signature --

Equivalence and diffraction-free since 2009.
You can be too; ask about our 12-step program.

Barry Stewart
Barry Stewart Veteran Member • Posts: 9,128
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera? Chain link

Skeeterbytes wrote:

Barry Stewart wrote:

Skeeterbytes wrote:

Chainlink with slats inserted gets my vote as "favorite" AF distraction. Hate the stuff. Also, cars parked nearby when there's no fencing. "Hey, nice grill." Should I mention the net? AF loves the net.

Some time ago, I wrote a post on how I'd like to be able to tell my camera: "If you EVER see chain link fence, car grilles, or goal netting, DO NOT even THINK of AF-ing on it" or "Only focus on the

Oops... I see where I was interrupted mid-thought. Should have said: "Only focus on the ball" which is sort of underway, with the E-M1X focusing on helmets in racing mode.

The idea didn't get much love, with most responses leaning toward, "Suck it up and don't blame your camera."

My thinking is that camera automation is designed to make our photography better — but when it comes to chain link, grilles and netting: Oly cameras actually make the photography worse. The "intelligent subject detection" that was injected into the E-M1X gave me hope that my dream will one day be fulfilled... though perhaps not by Olympus and its new owner.

Hi Barry,

...

I'll grudgingly allow that it happens less than it once did in my C-AF burst sequences.

cheers,

Rick

Rick: is the improvement from your best settings, better skills... or has Oly improved things in firmware? 
I'd say my E-M1.2 is better at not getting sucked in by mesh, than my 1.1.

-- hide signature --

Barry

 Barry Stewart's gear list:Barry Stewart's gear list
Olympus C-5060 Wide Zoom Olympus PEN E-PL5 Olympus E-1 Olympus E-M1 Olympus E-M5 II +10 more
Skeeterbytes Forum Pro • Posts: 19,448
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera? Chain link
1

Barry Stewart wrote:

Rick: is the improvement from your best settings, better skills... or has Oly improved things in firmware?
I'd say my E-M1.2 is better at not getting sucked in by mesh, than my 1.1.

Yes, M1ii was an improvement out of the box--I'll guess because of the X-type sensors  and bigger array, plus better software--and the big FW upgrade bringing the M1X features across made it better still. There are more settings to fiddle with too, so I always feel like a work in progress.

Some day, I shall see how the M1iii does. Some day.

Cheers,

Rick

-- hide signature --

Equivalence and diffraction-free since 2009.
You can be too; ask about our 12-step program.

Skeeterbytes Forum Pro • Posts: 19,448
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera? Chain link
1

Going through the catalog today, here's an example where the E-M1 would have jumped focus and the M1ii does not.

infield guy in front, fence and signage behind, camera stays on runners

Progress!

ETA And here's where the fencing wins.

TBF the error was probably mine, not getting accurate focus at the beginning of the sequence (it's not continuous with the shot above, but later in the lap). Later in the sequence, focus reacquires the runners.

It's typical of the varied challenges presented by sports and when you're not familiar with the venue, or don't have freedom to roam, you have to find ways to overcome these sketchy conditions.

Cheers,

Rick

p.s. This was the kid's final and only track meet of 2020 and proved to be her last HS sporting event. Some season.

-- hide signature --

Equivalence and diffraction-free since 2009.
You can be too; ask about our 12-step program.

rsmithgi Senior Member • Posts: 2,374
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera? Chain link

Skeeterbytes wrote:

Going through the catalog today, here's an example where the E-M1 would have jumped focus and the M1ii does not.

infield guy in front, fence and signage behind, camera stays on runners

Progress!

ETA And here's where the fencing wins.

TBF the error was probably mine, not getting accurate focus at the beginning of the sequence (it's not continuous with the shot above, but later in the lap). Later in the sequence, focus reacquires the runners.

It's typical of the varied challenges presented by sports and when you're not familiar with the venue, or don't have freedom to roam, you have to find ways to overcome these sketchy conditions.

Cheers,

Rick

p.s. This was the kid's final and only track meet of 2020 and proved to be her last HS sporting event. Some season.

Well my attempt to try out the E-M5.3 was blocked today by covid restrictions at the field. It was in a HS stadium field and the parents were not allowed inside the stadium. We had to stay outside the stadiums and we were a good distance off and had two chain link fences between us and the game.

Tomorrow is the last game of the fall season and I'll try again. After that, I'll have to wait until March or April when the Spring season starts.

 rsmithgi's gear list:rsmithgi's gear list
Olympus PEN E-P5 Olympus E-M1 Olympus E-M5 III Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45mm F1.8 Panasonic Lumix G Vario HD 12-32mm F3.5-5.6 Mega OIS +6 more
Adrian Harris
Adrian Harris Veteran Member • Posts: 6,598
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera? Chain link
1

Barry Stewart wrote:

Skeeterbytes wrote:

Chainlink with slats inserted gets my vote as "favorite" AF distraction. Hate the stuff. Also, cars parked nearby when there's no fencing. "Hey, nice grill." Should I mention the net? AF loves the net.

Some time ago, I wrote a post on how I'd like to be able to tell my camera: "If you EVER see chain link fence, car grilles, or goal netting, DO NOT even THINK of AF-ing on it" or "Only focus on the

The idea didn't get much love, with most responses leaning toward, "Suck it up and don't blame your camera."

My thinking is that camera automation is designed to make our photography better — but when it comes to chain link, grilles and netting: Oly cameras actually make the photography worse. The "intelligent subject detection" that was injected into the E-M1X gave me hope that my dream will one day be fulfilled... though perhaps not by Olympus and its new owner.

Ha ha ha, your post made me smile Barry. Until Covid I used to photograph lots of Roller Derby. The sports halls largely have dim/poor lighting. Often both teams will wear featureless tops - different colours but same tonal value - but the multitude of refs (between 7-9 circulating at same time) all wear black and white striped tops.

It was a nightmare for my Panasonic - which would almost always find the refs, - but the em1-mk2 does a lot better fortunately. At least when there is a huddle it will fairly consistently lock on to nearest player .. If I am using a wider pattern AF. Or stuck well when using a tighter group.

-- hide signature --
 Adrian Harris's gear list:Adrian Harris's gear list
Sony RX100 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 Sony SLT-A77 Olympus E-M1 II Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 +1 more
gcrimmins Junior Member • Posts: 37
Re: M4/3 reliable sports camera?

I've used the 40-150 f/2.8 and 1.4x on a EM-1 II to shoot a couple of soccer games and felt that it worked as well as the Canon 7D II that I've used. I would have no concerns about recommending that combination for sports if you're looking for a smaller, lighter system. Also check out Kelley Cox's website and blog. She shoots a lot of sports with Olympus gear, and now one of their Visionaries. https://www.kelleylcox.com/

If you're happy with Canon and just want a mirrorless camera, The R6 is great sports camera.

Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum MMy threads