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Old Aug 6, 2013, 3:47 PM   #11
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Strong set Harj. I like that you got a number of different types of shot here. Better choice in each shot of whether to have subject isolation or multiple subjects. As a series of shots, this is the most interesting series you've done on the racing posts to me. Well done!
Yeah, Harj. I mostly do event photography and I know what it's like when things are happening too fast for contemplative decision-making.

Ted
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Old Aug 6, 2013, 7:01 PM   #12
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Hi guys

Thanks for all of the feedback on the pics. I'm going through Sundays 550+ pics and the keeper rate is definitely higher with more images actually in focus and sharp. % Critically sharp images are more although composition for many are poor and filtering out the crap is going to be hard.

The keeper rate for Saturdays pics using the existing cam settings was improved over the last cycling event from 900+ pics. Still too many totally out of focus images which I'm beginning to think may be down to that Caf Lock setting being set to “on” and I think this is what also causes the cam to freeze for 1-2secs before firing the shutter or its a duff shutter in my E3. One thing that really stands out is that when tracking say a lead rider with the pack close by the Af was freezing or backfocuses. Trying to track someone in the middle of the pack is pretty impossible due to this freeze and the number of times the cam locks focus not on the primary target but back focuses. My work around was to aim and track the riders on the outer edge of the pack. It was still spray and prey.

It seems with resetting the cam, changing to Caf mode 1 but keeping all of the other settings the same - diamond Af, Raw + small jpegs etc and me being a bit more experienced really helped to improve the keeper rate. I need to test whether having Caf lock impacts how well the Caf is able to track and lock on - If I had more confidence in the AF and if the Lcd on the E3 was hi res, so as to be able to check focus on the day I would have left the feature off and then been able to decide whether that feature is worth being enabled or not.

Ken, weight wise the whole thing felt really uncomfortable and cumbersome on both days ...the grip really changes the balance and feel of the whole thing.

Last edited by HarjTT; Aug 6, 2013 at 7:07 PM.
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Old Aug 7, 2013, 1:35 PM   #13
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Hi Harj,

Those shots are fantastic but the 1st one is my favorite, the composition is great.

Marcelo
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Old Aug 7, 2013, 2:10 PM   #14
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Marcelo, Is that you...?
I was thinking of you yesterday, wondering what was keeping you away? (OK I apologize.)
Good to see you posting.
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Old Aug 7, 2013, 2:18 PM   #15
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Marcelo, Is that you...?
I was thinking of you yesterday, wondering what was keeping you away? (OK I apologize.)
Good to see you posting.
Hi Ken,

How are you?? I never forget my Olympus friends so every time I am in the neighborhood I always come to say hello.

Thank you for the warm welcoming.
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Old Aug 8, 2013, 5:55 PM   #16
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Glad you all liked the pics..and Marcelo .. always good to see you and the guys pop in... I've updated the gallery that theire in with a few more pics, so I'd like your opinion on the rest of the images. Here's teh gallery:

http://harjtt.smugmug.com/Photograph...0995262_3LFTS3

Now that I've had a look at the two days - the first day with pro's the images are definitely better. There's not many from the 2nd day that stand out or give the same feel to the day. That's mainly due to my positioning - simply not the right spot.

Keeper rate - we're looking at approx 30% of the pics actually being sharp and in focus which is a big jump from the 10% previously. The composition is still not great and had the cam not backfocus it would be at least 35-40%.

John now with your experience of shooting sport.. what do you think of these settings and what do you think should they be set too?

"Continuous AF Lock You are photographing a sports game, using the C-AF mode. From time to time someone a few feet in front of you gets up to bring himself a beer; your AF system is desperately trying to change the focus, then — to change it back. This feature disables such an adjustment when the focus change would be large and sudden. I would keep it On, even if my experience in continuous AF is very limited, as I use it very rarely. "

Now I've had this option "on" always but could this be the reason why the AF at times just seems to freeze and then takes the shot when you have a large group of fast on coming subjects?

"Continuous AF: this is the focusing mode which you may want to use occasionally to photograph fast-moving action. Here you have a choice of four different ways in which the lock button and shutter release will lock the focus and/or exposure.
  1. CAF Mode 1: Autofocusing starts when the release button is half pressed and the focus is continuously adjusted until the end. Exposure is locked with the Lock button; if not, the release half-press does the locking. This is like SAF Mode 1, except that AF is being adjusted continuously till the very end.
  2. CAF Mode 2 (DEFAULT): AF starts when the release is half-pressed; then both AF and AE are adjusted till the last moment, unless the lock button is used to freeze the exposure. This is the default. This mode is like the SAF Mode 2, except for continuous focusing.
  3. CAF Mode 3: Half-pressing the release freezes the exposure; continuous AF (or any AF) is active only when the lock button is being held down. Once again, this becomes a manual focus mode with continuous AF "on demand", like SAF Mode 3 above.
  4. CAF Mode 4: Like CAF Mode 3, except that the exposure is being adjusted up to the last moment. Like in Mode 3, continuous AF is performed only while the lock button is held down.
Most users will want to choose between CAF Modes 1 and 2 (default), although my preference is for the former, being more consistent with what I'm using with single AF. "

Now I've changed the CAF to mode1 - after reading the above as that was how I thought the CAF was working. Should I leave or revert it back to mode 2 ? Now does anyone know what Wrotnaik means by the lock button ?

Cheers

Harj

Last edited by HarjTT; Aug 8, 2013 at 6:07 PM.
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Old Aug 9, 2013, 6:49 AM   #17
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Harj - the different options are diferent ways to employ 2 buttons on the camera. A very popular method used in sports photography is called "back button focus". Generally speaking the idea is to separate the focus button from the shutter button.
In options 1 & 2 above, the shutter button still controls AF.
In options 3 & 4 above, the shutter button controls only the shutter and the 'lock" button (which I'm guessing is on the back of the camera where your thumb can hit it) determines when focus is active.

In each case you can control whether metering is constant or whether the camera meters once and locks it in.

So, should you switch focus control to the back button? From a sports shooting perspective the benefit comes in sports where action is not constant. For example, lets say you were shooting Baseball. you focus on the player at the plate using the back button - then you release the back button (stopping focusing) and recompose so batter is in the back portion of the frame. You have shutter button half pressed to lock exposure and be ready for the instant of action. The player gets a hit and you want to track him as he runs to first. You simply keep thumb pressed on back button and continuous focus will continue.

In short, using back button focus allows you to gain the benefit of single shot when you need it - you can focus and recompose.

So there are sporting situations where it's not as useful but typically it's better to leave your camera set up that way all the time if you use it - from a muscle memory standpoint. Don't want your brain having to think about whether it's your thumb or finger doing the focusing.

As for whether to lock metering or allow it to continue - that's a situational call. I tend to shoot a LOT of my sports in manual exposure (you just have to adjust the exposure as you move your position). That wouldn't work well if shooting cycling and they can move in and out of shadows. But if the light were constant I would absolutely shoot manual exposure from a given vantage point - in which case it doesn't matter which option because you're not using the metering.

But, there should be no difference in focus accuracy in either mode and none of the 4 modes would have any affect on how quickly AF shifts. But, I do agree with your statement that the continuous AF lock may be giving you difficulties. I would turn it off and see.

Hope this helps!
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