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Old Jan 27, 2013, 4:41 PM   #1
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Default today's birds - 70-300mm

some birds from this morning

female blue bird


P1278480 by ramcewan, on Flickr


P1278506 by ramcewan, on Flickr

male blue bird


P1278486 by ramcewan, on Flickr

an male Hairy Woodpecker


P1278490 by ramcewan, on Flickr


P1278505 by ramcewan, on Flickr

male red bellied wood pecker


P1278433 by ramcewan, on Flickr


P1278439 by ramcewan, on Flickr

female red bellied


P1278425 by ramcewan, on Flickr
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Last edited by ramcewan; Jan 27, 2013 at 5:57 PM.
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 7:49 AM   #2
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I think the last bird came out especially well.
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 9:15 AM   #3
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Nice captures. It is often difficult to capture a small bird against a snowy background, but you did well.
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 10:25 AM   #4
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Ramcewan,

Your 70-300 shots seem to show it to be a pretty good performer. How do you think it is as far as handling goes? I recently picked up an old (but in good shape) 300mm Vivitar on a Minolta mount. Haven't had a chance to try it out yet (we've had some really crummy dark days here) but it's kind of a monster on the end of the E-PL2. It will be fun to try but at some point I think I'll end up replacing my 45-200 with something like your lens or the Panny 100-300.
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 12:16 PM   #5
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Quote:
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Nice captures. It is often difficult to capture a small bird against a snowy background, but you did well.
Thanks Steven - I am getting better at it but still very much reliant on using exposure compensation in the post processing as opposed to using exposure bias while shooting which would be better. I tried a few with the bias set but set it too high (1.5 EV) and found tuning it down produced worse results than tuning it up in post processing.

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Ramcewan,

Your 70-300 shots seem to show it to be a pretty good performer. How do you think it is as far as handling goes? I recently picked up an old (but in good shape) 300mm Vivitar on a Minolta mount. Haven't had a chance to try it out yet (we've had some really crummy dark days here) but it's kind of a monster on the end of the E-PL2. It will be fun to try but at some point I think I'll end up replacing my 45-200 with something like your lens or the Panny 100-300.
Sammy - the 70-300mm is my go to lens for birding. It took me some time to get used to it but now that I have I am very comfortable using it. I also have a large 300mm prime that I used more last year before I got the 70-300mm. It is a Russian made Tair 3 preset f4.5 monster


Tair 3 by ramcewan, on Flickr

It is too heavy for hand-holding and I expected I'd use it this year on a tripod but haven't once pulled it out. I think being able to hand hold the 70-300mm gives me so much more flexibility to capture shots of birds that aren't on the feeder I am reluctant to use the big lens even though it is faster at 300mm and every bit as sharp, this is one of my most popular flickr photos;


Female Downy Woodpecker 20120407 by ramcewan, on Flickr

So yeah I think I digressed but my point is the 70-300mm is excellent and has pretty much replaced the 45-200mm I also have and made me very unlikely to use it or the 300mm prime I have.

I've looked at replacing the 45-200mm and the 70-300mm with the 100-300mm but I am just not sure the Lumix 100-300mm is going to be as sharp. It doesn't seem to be a widely used lens so there isn't much out there to look at.

Of course the Zuiko 75-300mm is as sharp as the 70-300mm and is native to MFT and silent focusing and all that good stuff but surprisingly it is slower than the 70-300mm and damn it if it isn't just too expensive for me to ever see myself buying one.
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 12:45 PM   #6
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That's humongous, haha. Looks like a bazooka.

I agree with you about the price of the MFT lens, though hopefully this newer version will be found for a little less. In the meantime, this vivitar I just got came with a 2x teleconverter, so stay tuned for some really crummy 600mm shots.
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 1:18 PM   #7
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That's humongous, haha. Looks like a bazooka.

I agree with you about the price of the MFT lens, though hopefully this newer version will be found for a little less. In the meantime, this vivitar I just got came with a 2x teleconverter, so stay tuned for some really crummy 600mm shots.
I think for $299 the 70-300mm is a bargain even when you add in the adapter compared to the Lumix 100-300mm and the Zuiko 75-300mm.

I look forward to seeing your shots with the vivitar. The thing with the older lenses is they tend to be simple triplet designs that while yielding a big lens (a 300mm must be at least 300mm long if using a triplet design) they tend to produce fairly good IQ. I think we tend to forget that the modern zoom is a compromise between size and IQ, where as the big primes were designed to be as good IQ as possible, size be damned.

lol yeah the Tair looks like a Bazooka for sure! They also made a version called the Photo Sniper or Photo Sniper which I really had my eye set on but couldn't find one under $150 which was more than I wanted to pay. It seemed to me a really cool idea and I have seen some excellent results taken with it since it allows for a much steadier hand holding position. On the other hand the lens plus kit really would be something to avoid taking to public events!

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Old Jan 28, 2013, 1:58 PM   #8
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Beautiful bird shots Ramce, very much detail and great lighting conditions.

Do those lenses shoot rockets? Wow! Back in those days that was the norm. I remember having a Vivitar 400mm on my Minolta and it was impressive looking to say the least but not a very good performer, at least not in my hands.
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 11:04 PM   #9
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... On the other hand the lens plus kit really would be something to avoid taking to public events!
What, is there a problem taking that pistol gripped camera support out and about? Just because the lens is big enough to hide a gun barrel...

Once, on a flight to Aspen, had the airport security check all my lenses, taking the caps of each end and looking through the glass. Wondered what on earth he was looking for. People hide drugs in these was his reply.
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 11:07 PM   #10
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More bluebirds please. We don't have them around here and your shots really show their colouration -- such a wonderful blue. Nice shots.
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