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Old Jul 13, 2009, 4:40 PM   #1
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Default Flying Aces - Duxford Airshow 2009

Hi Guys

Here's a few pics from the Flying aces air show held at Duxford, Cambridgeshire. I used the 135mm F3.5, 35-100F2 and occasionally the 14-54ZD with the E3. These are all straight out of cam jpegs - no retouching etc.

1. E3 + 135mm OM F3.5 F9 @ 1/320s ISO 200. IS is off.

2. Watching the show.... the crew for the acrobats watch the show. E3 +35-100F2 F9 @ 1/320s

3. "Follow Me" - Airbase ground crew

4. "Taxing ...." 2 P51D's - Miss Velma and Ferocious Frankie prepare to taxy off.

5. Boeing B17

6. "Wheres the tea lad ?" RAF crew waiting for tea .. now wheres my cuppa ?

7. Big Beautiful Doll - my favorite P51D

8. Me 109 take off... E3 - 35-100F2

9. Photographers ..

10. "P51D Mustangs" - Miss Velma, Ferocious Frankie and Big Baby Doll. E3 + 135OM F3.5

The rest of the gallery is here:


My thoughts from the day:

1. My E3 was consistently underexposing by at least 1/3 EV
2. IS has to be turned off to get a proper focus lock and infocus shot. If its on then the images of aircraft flying past or doing maneuvers will be OOF.
3. My E3's got a smear on the sensor or mirror - you can see it on every image.
4. Oly need to release a FW update to keep the settings when you swap the battery without powering down the camera. Not only do you loose whatever settings you had but it resets the filenumber sequence too on any new pics that you take after the batteries been replaced. Not good and I was lucky that I spotted it.
5. Need that little bit extra reach - 150 would be good 200 even better.
6. I didn't take as many candid street style shots as I did in my last visit - I need to change that for the next one.
7. Took a lot of pics - 600+ shots but the pro canon nikon guys were blasting through 8GB cards within the first hour or so.
8. E3's shutter - I didn't use the burst mode at all - its not my style but the E3's shutter seemed to make sure seriously weird noise when shooting quickly one after the other - knocked my confidence a wee bit with the cam. Never had that with the E1.



Last edited by HarjTT; Jul 13, 2009 at 5:00 PM.
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Old Jul 13, 2009, 5:01 PM   #2
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Nice looking images, HarjTT. That first one has an almost 3-D look to me.

With the two aircraft in the sky just above the B17, you almost get the feeling you were on the tail of that plane while in the sky to get that shot!

I would figure most cameras would underexpose airial shots like this due to the high percentage of sky and clouds in the frame, and would probably require some amount of positive exposure compensation, depending on how cloudy the skies were, if you were shooting anywhere near the sun and whether the clouds were of the darker rain-type or not.

The smear must be on the sensor. It shouldn't show up on the image if it were the mirror, unless I'm missing something. As I was scanning your images I didn't notice a smear.

Never hurts to have a 200 or 300mm zoom and only need 175mm. Either would be preferrable to not having enough.
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Old Jul 13, 2009, 5:09 PM   #3
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IMO, Number five is the best. That's a nice capture.

If I wanted to tease you, I'd say that I'd prefer it if the props were spinning. If I were a passenger, I think I'd prefer that the guns in front point away from the plane in your #5 shot, too.

My favorite for being the most realistic as to what you'd expect to see in an earlier period in history would be #6 ("Wheres the tea lad ?").

Neat stuff. Please keep sharing.
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Old Jul 13, 2009, 6:21 PM   #4
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Great to see your shots Harj. My favorite is number 5; good job. I should have warned you that airshows are very habit forming; and also that you will shoot way more shots than you ever intended!

"My E3 was consistently underexposing by at least 1/3 EV"

You didn't say what kind of metering you used, but I always use the tight spot meter, and meter off the aircraft body.

"I didn't use the burst mode at all"

Not needed for ground shots or slower aircraft, but I find the 3 shot burst is perfect for high speed jets. If you next show has jet aircraft, try the short bursts.

P.S. I forgot to mention, but you probably already knew, that good sunglasses and a hat are required equipment at airshows!

Last edited by Steven R; Jul 13, 2009 at 6:26 PM.
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Old Jul 13, 2009, 6:38 PM   #5
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Hi Greg /Jim

Thanks for the comments on the pics ... this years show was different as there wasn't as many people in uniform, whether they were from the services or re-inactors and I did miss them from the event. No 6 was the only shot of those officers. No jets this year either from the USAF or RAF but i think theyre leaving those for the really big show in Sept.

The B17 .. i do wish the props were in motion .. would have made it look really cool ... even better if the planes had been the FW 190/ME109 and a P51D.

The FW190 apparently is the only flying version in the world, so it was really cool to see it flying and many more Spitfires, P51D's and other fighter planes from WWII.

IQ - the pics look sharper with IS off, well thats my initial opinion. I was really surprised by how badly the AF was effected by IS and that could explain why the E3's AF has been suspect at times.

Steve - I was using spot metering and metering off the planes body. from memory the E1 was nailing the exposure although I could be wrong.

I'm not sure about the E'3 shutter - just rapid single shutter presses didn't seeem right. I was shocked by how many pics I did take and I need to work through them, esp to fix that smear.

There's two airshows before the big one in Sept at Duxford.. and that's going to be a mix of WWII and modern jets, so I'll be going to see what we can do at that.



Last edited by HarjTT; Jul 13, 2009 at 6:49 PM.
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Old Jul 13, 2009, 6:49 PM   #6
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Hi, Harj,

This may be a dumb question, but you do know that when you're panning horizintally you need to set the IS mode to IS2, right?

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Old Jul 13, 2009, 7:05 PM   #7
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Hi Ted

Not a dumb question at all.. I did think about IS2 for panning but the fighter planes esp were coming in for several directions before flying right across the airfield, so it was easier simply to turn it off. The change was instant - with no IS, I'd say 90-95% of the shots were in focus or very close to being in focus.

What i did notice was that the pro togs basically setup camp and didnt move - lots of Canon 1D MKII/III's, D700's with 70-200f2.8's and 300m f4> Didn;t see any other Oly shooters but there were quiet a few Sony Alphas.



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Old Jul 20, 2009, 6:31 AM   #8
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Great shots Harj, I could swear you were above the planes in that first shot.
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Old Jul 20, 2009, 9:39 AM   #9
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..........these are quite nice Harj, I especially like the P-51s and the ME. I do not see smears on any of these images.

My E-3 shows some real nasty looking stuff looking through the VF, quite a lot of specks, but so far I'm not seeing anything on the files, but I must get the junk cleaned away. I've done some 'squeeze' puffs and only moved the stuff around...
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Old Jul 21, 2009, 7:59 PM   #10
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hey Harj,

I do love your shots of the WW2 planes. My father was a tank commander in that war and so I grew up with that history.

However, apparently you missed the big animal event in England recently - maybe you could shoot this next time.



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