Mirrorless cameras are wonderful tools, and I'm going to be writing regularly about their attributes. Quick intro to Micro Four Thirds, a.k.a. MFT, M43, Micro 4/3. The key characteristics are that they have interchangeable lenses, they are almost always smaller than DSLR's, they generally cost less than DSLR's for similar features, and they have a sensor that is smaller than DSLR's. The sensor is shaped in a 4x3 ratio, not a 2x3 ratio like DSLR's, which makes a picture that is less wide. One thing that makes Micro 4/3 cameras significantly … [Read more...] about Everything You Need To Know About Micro 4/3 Lenses
micro four thirds
NOTE: All photos in this post are Copyright Scott Bourne 2017, All Rights Reserved and all were made with the Olympus OM-D E-M1 MK II camera. On December 19, 2016 I wrote my first look at the new Olympus OM-D E-M1 MK II M43 camera. Now it’s been a month and I’ve had lots more time shooting with it and want to update my original thoughts as well as provide some real-world sample images I’ve made from the camera. Autofocus Let me start by talking a little bit more on the new autofocus on the Olympus MK II. Birds in flight will … [Read more...] about Update On The Olympus OM-D E-M1 MK II Micro Four Thirds Camera
The Olympus M.ZUIKO Digital ED 7-14mm f/2.8 Pro lens has an equivalent focal length (EFL) of 14-28mm and is part of the Olympus Pro line. While I usually don’t prefer zooms I have decided that this one is a great compromise when I want to go super wide, but still be able to shoot a more normal wide angle like 28mm. It’s a solid lens made of metal, with a rubber seal around the mount. Attached to a weatherproof body (like the new Olympus OM-D E-M1 MK II) it is weather tight. It has super fast autofocus on the new Olympus OM-D E-M1 MK II … [Read more...] about Olympus M. Zukio Digital ED 7-14mm f/2.8 Pro Lens First Look
NOTE: I'll be adding some or all of this to my Bird Photography Gear Guide very soon ________________________________________________________________________________ *Lightweight in comparison to standard FF 35mm gear **Small in comparison to standard FF 35mm gear ***Afordable in comparison to standard FF 35mm gear This is a monumental day for me. As someone who has carried heavy, bulky, expensive camera bodies and lenses across the United States, up hills, down ravines, across rivers, onto boats, beaches and a variety of terrain, I … [Read more...] about The Ultimate Lightweight*, High Quality, Small*, Affordable*, Bird/Wildlife Photography Kit
(Micro Four Thirds Just Took A Big Step Up) DISCLAIMER: Crop factor and the associated focal length multiplier only affects field of view. I prefer to reference this as effective focal length but others use FOV. Feel free to use whichever term you like. --------------------------------------------- I love small, lightweight, inexpensive, powerful cameras. I became interested in the M43 format in the Summer of 2009 when these cameras first started shipping. By 2010 I had purchased my own Micro Four Thirds system and over the ensuing … [Read more...] about First Look – OM-D: Olympus E-M1 Mark II – Micro Four Thirds Camera
I have written here often about Micro Four Thirds cameras. I have drifted in and out and in and out and back into the MFT universe since it’s inception in 2008. The smaller size, lighter weight, and lower cost are attractive to photographers of all stripes. Plenty has been written here and elsewhere about those advantages in MFT systems. But there’s one thing I rarely hear about and that I consider to be the single greatest advantage to being a Micro Four Thirds shooter. "Polycamery" Yes that is a word I helped make up with Ron Pepper. … [Read more...] about The Single Biggest Advantage Of Being A Micro Four Thirds Camera User
HINT: The word Leica is involved. I am a very lucky guy. I get to shoot with the best cameras and lenses in the world. And recently, I went back to micro four thirds for most of my non bird photography work. One of the reasons I came back was the brilliant Panasonic GX8, but that’s only part of the story. The new holy trinity (well MY holy trinity) of Leica glass (Panasonic lenses) is the rest of the story. There’s something magical about Leica lenses. It’s more than the cool names (Summilux and Nocticron - The company names all of its … [Read more...] about The New (Unconventional) Holy Trinity Lens Selection For MFT Shooters
I'm getting ready for an overseas trip to China. I made a similar trip a few years ago and learned a few lessons about how to pack my gear. The goal was to travel light, but with redundancy. I also knew I'd be shooting in lots of different shooting situations. The goal was to be able to fit virtually all my gear into a single piece of carry-on baggage (there was no way I was going to deal with lost items). Why Go Carry On? As soon as you let your gear out of your site... things can go wrong. From lost baggage and delays to outright theft … [Read more...] about Just How Much Gear Can You Fit in a Carry-On Bag?
While I am using the mighty Canon 1DX MK II and associated big glass for 90% of my bird photography, I am using Micro Four Thirds for video and most any other photo subject in order to give my bruised and battered old body a break when it comes to lugging all the heavy gear. Hopefully - and soon - that ratio will turn around soon, and I'll be able to use the M43 gear for most of my bird photography too. For now, I still need the heavy stuff sometimes. But that doesn't mean I like it :) Thankfully, Micro Four Thirds gear gives me options and … [Read more...] about What’s In My Micro Four Thirds Bag?
When I heard that Photofocus was renting the Pinball Hall of Fame for a party, my mind started going crazy with ideas. The plan was to host a party during Photoshop World in Las Vegas and invite Photofocus readers to join us for a live shoot with models and borrowable cameras from LensRentals.com. The party was a blast, and you've already seen some of the pictures posted here on the blog. I had a particular plan in mind, however, and I'll show you how I made it come to life, and maybe my method will help you realize a vision you've had in … [Read more...] about Pinball Heroes: How I Previsualized and Realized a Photograph
The Olympus M.Zuiko ED 40-150mm f/2.8 Pro lens with its 1.4x teleconverter has helped me make a bunch of good pictures and allowed me to do a good job for my clients. Over the last few months, I've used it to shoot a variety of subjects from wild horses to aerial photos to portraits to college graduation. I'd like to show you how it performed for me, and make an argument for why you will never need to buy a $12,000 lens. Let's start with the horses. This Lens Will Tame Wild Horses The thing about these horses is they are fairly tame (people … [Read more...] about Super-Telephoto Killer: Olympus 40-150mm f/2.8 Pro Hands-on Review
I attended a workshop tour put on by David Ziser a few days before my first DSLR arrived, and he got me hooked on hybrid slideshows. I used to use Animoto to make these, and more recently I prefer ProShow Web, but I also like to make my own productions using Photoshop (Richard Harrington has a good introduction for video in Photoshop right here). These hybrid slideshows are always a win for weddings and family and senior portrait clients, but I also make them for some non-profit clients. The thing is, nothing is more moving than powerful … [Read more...] about Bad Music = Bad Video & How To Beat the Shakes
There are very few things you can buy that will make your photography better. The truth is, you just have to practice more. The good news is, I can practice more--I've got a lifetime to do so, and so do you. But if I can buy a tool that will help me have fun while practicing, then that might just be worthwhile, and I'd say that the Lensbaby Composer Pro system is just such a tool. Lens-what? LensBABY. They've been making lenses for years, and they're made right here in Portland, Oregon, USA. The distinctive thing about Lensbaby lenses is that … [Read more...] about Guaranteed Smiles: Lensbaby Composer Pro Review
Lomography lenses can provide a unique wide-angle look for your footage or photos. In this tutorial produced with lynda.com, I show you how to get the full benefits of these cheap lenses. They are a lot of fun and a creative addition to your bag. These lenses are for micro four thirds mounts http://youtu.be/fqx0NpLsaWc This specific tutorial is from the Video Gear Weekly series presented by lynda.com authors Rich Harrington and Robbie Carman. The complete course is presented as a weekly lynda.com series and offers reviews and tips on the … [Read more...] about Shooting with Lomography Lenses
I recently rented a Lumix 35-100mm f/2.8 G Vario lens from LensRentals.com so that I could show you the difference between a 70-200mm lens on a full-frame Nikon and a 35-100mm lens on a Micro Four Thirds Lumix, as well as the value of such comparisons. First of all, let's define some things: Bokeh: The out of focuss-ness of the background in a photograph. Sometimes photographers use the word to describe the quality of the softness, and sometimes we use it to describe how deep the depth of field is. I'm sure this isn't the precisely correct … [Read more...] about Bokeh Showdown: Full-frame 70-200mm f/2.8 vs. MFT 35-100mm f/2.8
https://vimeo.com/79016171 Have you ever wondered exactly which settings to choose to get the best video out of your DSLR or mirror less camera? In this video, I walk you through step by step and show you on cameras from Canon, Nikon, and Panasonic. You'll learn how to get the videos in the right format for editing so tools like Photoshop can work with the files. This tutorial is part of a new series we're launching to help photographer's get up and running with video. We'll have a few posts a week to help you expand your skills. Let us … [Read more...] about Setting Up Your Camera to Shoot Video
Let Scott and Rich show you how to use in-camera effects to get dramatic images quickly. Some may call it cheating, but we're all for different ways to get different results. You can check out the whole class here and get a free trial membership here. Disclaimer: This is just one way to achieve an effect. ______ … [Read more...] about Creating Effected Images In Camera
We're about to kickoff a series on the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera. This is a hot new camera that's on a lot of your minds as it combines a rich set of features at a very low price point. Wider Dynamic Range Micro Four-Thirds Mount Raw Video and Apple ProRes for less than $1000 In-camera time-lapse First up in our series... Scott goes straight to the source and asks the questions you want to know about this new camera. ______ … [Read more...] about Meet The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera
Watch Scott shoot a great detail shot of a beautiful car. He's using a wide-angle lens on a micro four-thirds body. You can check out the whole class here and get a free trial membership here. Disclaimer: This is just one way to achieve this style of shot. ______ … [Read more...] about Using A Wide Angle Lens On A Micro Four Thirds Camera
You've probably heard Scott and me talk about how much we love the Micro Four-Thirds format. In this movie we outline some of the key benefits and what makes these cameras work differently than traditional DSLRs. You can check out the whole class here and get a free trial membership here. Disclaimer: This is just an overview of some of the differences of note. ______ … [Read more...] about How are Micro Four-Thirds Cameras Different from DSLRs?
Watch Scott show you how to shoot a portrait using a mirror, an ice light, and a 150mm focal length lens. This is a cool technique and Scott breaks down the whole shot from start to finish. This lesson comes from our new class on Micro Four-Thirds photography. You can check out the whole class here and get a free trial membership here. Disclaimer: This is just one way to create this style of image. ______ … [Read more...] about Shooting a Portrait Using a Mirror
If you follow this blog regularly you know I am a huge fan of the mirror-less cameras and micro four thirds in particular. I own and shoot with a significant Olympus OMD EM5 system (with almost every lens Olympus makes) and I also use a Fuji X100s. I love these cameras. I love the small form factor. I love the light weight and the image quality that you can wrangle out of them if you know what you are doing. I love the fact that they can produce professional-quality photos but don't draw attention or intimidate subjects. But there is a dark … [Read more...] about There Is Potential Bad News For Micro Four Thirds And Mirror-less Camera Shooters
I decided to test the Novoflex MFT adapter with my Olympus OMD-EM5. My pal Frederick Van Johnson and I were in Santa Barbara, CA and he brought out is Nikon 24-70 f/2.8 lens. I had the Novoflex Adapter MFT Nikon version. The short version of this post is simple. The thing works. The longer version. There are many inexpensive Micro Four Thirds lens adapters on the market. But I'd heard most don't hold up. I've tested some cheap Chinese knock offs that are so loose the lens wiggles on both ends. I decided to try the Novoflex to see if it's … [Read more...] about Use Just About Any Lens With Your Micro Four Thirds Camera Thanks to the Novoflex MFT Adapter
If you are a regular reader here at Photofocus you know I have switched to micro four thirds as my primary camera format. At the top end of MFT you will find Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 and the Olympus OM-D E-M5. I bought the OMD-E-M5 merely because it came out first. I bought a bunch of lenses, all Olympus other than one Panasonic (Fisheye) because I thought it just made sense to avoid paying for stabilization in the Panasonic lenses, when the Oly had five-axis-based sensor stabilization. But it wasn't until my recent trip to Alaska that I … [Read more...] about Panasonic GH3 v. Olympus OMD-EM5 – Quick Take
I am an unabashed fan of the Micro Four Thirds format. I sold all my DLSR gear and am using MFT gear for just about everything. As a professional photographer, I am probably stretching it a bit by shooting only MFT, and here are five things that the Micro Four Thirds format needs to change the conversation, dethrone Nikon and Canon, and eliminate the notion that you need a DSLR for professional work. 1. More Players Four Thirds (which led later to Micro Four Thirds) came about just seven years ago. The original members of the Four Thirds … [Read more...] about Five Things That Need To Happen If Micro Four Thirds Is Hoping To Take Over The World
Here are the basics: 13 lens elements, 10 groups of lenses 1:1 reproduction ratio (photos will be 17.5mm across at closest focusing distance) Aperture range F2.8 - F22 Minimum focus distance of 19cm (7.5 inches). Dimensions 82mm x 56mm, weight 185 grams Filter size 46mm The Olympus MSC ED M. 60mm f/2.8 Lens is a dedicated Micro Four Thirds lens that I added to my kit both for its fast aperture and its effective focal length (EFL) of 120mm. It's a perfect length for macro work. The wide aperture allows for shallow depth of field and … [Read more...] about Olympus MSC ED Macro 60mm f/2.8 Lens
Talk about a big change. My switch to Micro Four Thirds is complete. I have just about everything I think you can buy for the basic MFT system. Here are some photos. The best part about it is this bag weighs very little and will easily fit under the seat or in the overhead bins on even the smallest plane. I can carry one bag (and a tripod) and have all I need now. In the photo above you now see all the camera bodies and lenses I carry. From left to right: Olympus OM-D EM-5 body Lensbaby Composer With Sweet Optic for Micro 4/3 Panasonic 8mm … [Read more...] about What’s In Scott’s Bag Now?
I've spent the last two weeks or so almost exclusively shooting with my Olympus OM-D E-M5 camera. I bought the Olympus M.Zukio 75mm f/1.8 ED lens to go with it because it's a great mid-range telephoto length and at f/1.8. That's so fast it will make your head spin. Note: to have an f/1.8 150mm lens on a typical Canon or Nikon system you'd have a lens that was so heavy you'd hardly be able to hand-hold it. It would also cost north of $5000 maybe $10,000. But on a Micro 4/3 system, the effective focal length (EFL) of the 75 is 150mm. You may be … [Read more...] about Olympus M.Zukio 75mm f/1.8 ED Lens – (For Micro Four Thirds Cameras) Mini Review
I've recently been in a number of situations where I was hassled, bothered, interfered with, and made to feel like a monster because I was carrying a "professional looking camera." I own and use Micro 4/3 cameras as well as a variety of other camera formats. My Canon 1DX is my mainstay for pro work. It's the best camera I've ever owned. But when I carry the 1DX with a long lens, flash, flash modifiers, it's like I'm wearing a sign that says "Hey why don't you mindlessly bother me because I have a big camera." So I did an experiment. I took … [Read more...] about Re-Thinking Micro 4/3 Cameras
Make sure you don't miss a single Photofocus post - point your feed reader to the free Photofocus RSS Feed here and subscribe. I still have too many cameras. No matter how hard I try, I can't seem to make any room in my gear closet. I get rid of one camera and I swear two more take its place. So with all these cameras laying around in my studio, why do I keep grabbing the micro 4/3-based Olympus E-P3? Before I tell you why - I'll tell you why not. It's not because Olympus sponsors me - they don't, and never have. It's not because Olympus is … [Read more...] about Two Reasons I’m Loving The Micro 4/3 Format