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Old Jun 12, 2009, 3:37 PM   #1
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Default A Surprise visitor to the feeder

Well, I guess it pays to never say never. Just when I thought I was done with taking photos of birds. I heard a fairly loud crash outside my window.
This guy decided that he wanted some lunch today and came to the feeder about 3 more times. Enough for me to set up the E-30 with the 50-200mm ED.



He looked like a giant in comparison to all the songbirds that I've been shooting.

One thing I want to note relative to the E-30. After spending about a month with this camera, I've got to say that I'm really pleased with the output. It took a while but, I'm fairly comfortable that my settings are yielding pretty fair results. I've pretty much set up the E-30 to Sharpness -1, contrast -1, using Manual mode for birds, I leave WB and Gradation set at Auto as the camera seems to be very accurate with both.I shoot almost exclusively with Jpeg set at Large SuperFine. AF is set at center single point with spot metering.

With the settings as listed above, I really don't do a lot of PP save for the occasional auto sharpen in Photoshop Elements 6.0.

The one item I haven't mentioned is ISO. I find the E-30 puts out good images 'til ISO 400. Beyond that and you'll see some noise setting in. I'm not a noise aphobic and regularly use ISO800. Beyond that and I'm not a happy camper. But that's just me as your tastes may differ.

Couple the output along with the controls and this is one really fine camera. The best Olympus camera I've had in my hands.

Zig

BTW, it's been raining and cloudy for the last week as it is right now. So, if the image looks a bit underexposed, it's because it's pretty dark and gray right now.

Last edited by zig-123; Jun 12, 2009 at 3:41 PM. Reason: forgot to add exposure
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Old Jun 12, 2009, 4:05 PM   #2
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Default this always happens....

No preasure to produce for a contest and subjects just flock in asking to be shot!

That's a lot of detail.

At some point you should look into the program Noiseware Professional. I apply it to E520 out-of-camera JPEG's and high ISO JPEG conversions from RAW files after everything, including sharpening, as been applied, and it's amazing how well it works and easy the program is to use. The Professional version (around $80) has a self-learning filter so there's no need to do calibrations. I would bet you'd be good to at least ISO 1600 with that program. It can be bought as a standalone program or as a Photoshop plug-in and does support 64 bit processing if you're working in that environment.
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Old Jun 12, 2009, 4:34 PM   #3
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Default Looks good zig

Jays can be very photogenic and this guy was. Nice pic
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Old Jun 12, 2009, 6:05 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Greg Chappell View Post
That's a lot of detail.

At some point you should look into the program Noiseware Professional. I apply it to E520 out-of-camera JPEG's and high ISO JPEG conversions from RAW files after everything, including sharpening, as been applied, and it's amazing how well it works and easy the program is to use. The Professional version (around $80) has a self-learning filter so there's no need to do calibrations. I would bet you'd be good to at least ISO 1600 with that program. It can be bought as a standalone program or as a Photoshop plug-in and does support 64 bit processing if you're working in that environment.
Hi Greg,

Thanks for the tip. Up until now, when necessary, I've been using Neat Image as a plug-in to Photoshp Elements 6.0. Based on your description, Neat Image works much the same as Noiseware, in that it's pretty much automatic. I hesitate to use and noise reduction program since, if you're not careful, the results are worse than if nothing was used.

I'm going to look up Noiseware and see if they have a demo package available to try.

By the way, I'm using a DELL XPS 400 machine with a 32 bit Windows XP OS. I just upgraded the memory last week from 1Gb to 4GB. Up until the upgrade, I had been having a devil of a time with Elements blowing out and shutting down. This usually ocurred at the tail end of a PP session after I had done a lot of work to an image file. FWIW, I've had no issues since the memory upgrade.

Zig
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Old Jun 12, 2009, 6:09 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by eharrim View Post
Jays can be very photogenic and this guy was. Nice pic

Hi,

This Jay, unlike a lot of the other songbirds, was not at all uncomfortable seeing me at the camera. He could clearly see me as I was making final setup changes to the E30. He just kept looking at me kinda curious.
But, he didn't flinch.

Zig
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Old Jun 12, 2009, 7:02 PM   #6
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great pic zig
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Old Jun 13, 2009, 2:43 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by zig-123 View Post
Hi Greg,

Thanks for the tip. Up until now, when necessary, I've been using Neat Image as a plug-in to Photoshp Elements 6.0. Based on your description, Neat Image works much the same as Noiseware, in that it's pretty much automatic. I hesitate to use and noise reduction program since, if you're not careful, the results are worse than if nothing was used.

I'm going to look up Noiseware and see if they have a demo package available to try.

By the way, I'm using a DELL XPS 400 machine with a 32 bit Windows XP OS. I just upgraded the memory last week from 1Gb to 4GB. Up until the upgrade, I had been having a devil of a time with Elements blowing out and shutting down. This usually ocurred at the tail end of a PP session after I had done a lot of work to an image file. FWIW, I've had no issues since the memory upgrade.

Zig
I had/have Neat Image on my old laptop as a plugin with Photoshop CS2, but never bothered re-loading it to my new machine and in CS4. I've owned it for quite a while, but never really have had a lot of luck getting good results with it.

My XPS machine came loaded with 6GB of tri-channel DDR3 RAM, and is upgradeable to a max of 12GB. As it is right now, CS4 opens in around 2-3 seconds, upposed to the unending time it used to take on my old machine that had only 1GB of RAM. All of these newer programs with all of these new features all take that much more of a toll today. I think Vista alone takes at least 1GB of RAM to run. Not too far down the road I definitely see myself maxing the RAM capability to stay just that much further ahead of the surve this time....hopefully.
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Old Jun 13, 2009, 2:48 AM   #8
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I always find it neat to see what birds which people find interesting - its completely based on where you live - for example, an oriole is rare here, and a cardinal is extremely lost, however a bluejay, red winged blackbird or a hairy woodpecker is reasonably common.

that being said, I love this shot, well framed, great DOF and excellent detail! keep them coming!
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Old Jun 13, 2009, 5:18 AM   #9
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Hi Conor,
Thanks for the kind words.

As in your locale, here on the Cape, Blue Jays are a very common bird. Only reason for my surprise is the fact that, generally, I don't see Blue Jays on my feeder. That's due to the feeder being so close to house.
That being said, I'm happy to see this guy visit once in a while. They are colorful. Now, if an Oriole happened to visit- that would be a sight.

I've seen some of your posts in the Wildlife section. Looks like you're having fun with the Sigma 70-200mm lens. The Mallard shots were particularly sharp.

Zig
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Old Jun 13, 2009, 8:44 AM   #10
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....well, the only Cardinals I've seen recently was a St. Louis baseball game on TV, the Blue Jays just left town...and we won't see the Orioles around here 'til September.

If it weren't for this forum I would/will only see sparrows, grackles and of course the mockingbirds, one of which is now dive bombing us when we leave the house. I did see a morning dove sitting on the backyard fence top a few days ago.
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Zig, the blue above is very pretty, the photo IQ and comp is great and I like it very much.

As for the jays of Canada, I remember feeding (from my hand) when I lived in the bush of the Red Lake District, NW Ontario. Those are really great birds and fun... The Blue Jays are fun too, to watch them command a feeding area.
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