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Offline Webmaster  
#1 Posted : 30 December 2019 19:45:07(UTC)
Webmaster


Joined: 25/07/2001(UTC)
Posts: 11,133
Have thought of newer "DSLR"-type of camera for some years now...

Finally I hit the "buy" button on Black Friday... BigGrin

What I got was an Olympus OM-D M10 MkII, not the latest of DSLR's but good enough for me (half the price of the MkIII model)...
The camera construction is a couple of years old, but it had one killer feature for a bargain price - focus bracketing...

This means the camera automatically can shoot a defined burst of shots with some focus adjustment between every shot...
With focus stacking software, you can then make great model shots composed of several photos. I use Photoshop, since I have PS & Lightroom on subscription.

I also like the small form factor of the Olympus m4/3 DLSR's, less bulky that the "usual" ones.

Here you can see the difference regarding my old & new gear...

OldVsNew.jpg

The beauty is that I can use my old lenses with the new camera too with an adapter, so I have even tested the big lens on the left with the small camera on the right - works great!


However this is a model photography topic, so here are my 2 first attempts with "focus bracketing" and stacking them up in Photoshop.
These shots are freehand, no tripod or such involved.

LamboStacked.jpg
BR80-2.jpg

Edited by user 06 January 2020 21:50:59(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
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Offline Webmaster  
#2 Posted : 30 December 2019 19:58:00(UTC)
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Joined: 25/07/2001(UTC)
Posts: 11,133
Last week, a macro lens arrived and today a Manfrotto Pixi mini-tripod arrived... Smile

So tonight I had to clean up the cluttered "workshop corner" and try a shot (with focus bracketing, of course)... BigGrin

Here you can see the small dustbuster robot cleaning up most of Cleo's cat hairs after removing all accumulated junk items, the test setup and the final photo...
Some adjustments needed, note to self - make sure the windows taskbar is not on the screen while shooting... LOL LOL LOL

Dammsugare.jpg

CameraSetup.jpg

TestInCornersm.jpg
Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
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Offline LongHairedDavid  
#3 Posted : 30 December 2019 20:15:30(UTC)
LongHairedDavid


Joined: 04/01/2019(UTC)
Posts: 344
Location: England, Ipswich
Originally Posted by: Webmaster Go to Quoted Post
Last week, a macro lens arrived and today a Manfrotto Pixi mini-tripod arrived... Smile

So tonight I had to clean up the cluttered "workshop corner" and try a shot (with focus bracketing, of course)... BigGrin

Here you can see the dustbuster robot cleaning up most of Cleo's cat hairs, the test setup and the final photo...
Some adjustments needed, note to self - make sure the windows taskbar is not on the screen while shooting... LOL LOL LOL




Good job. I always use Helican Focus as I didn’t get on with Photoshop’s stacking.
Long Haired David
AKA David Pennington
A mystified Maerklin Newbie
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Offline Webmaster  
#4 Posted : 30 December 2019 20:42:19(UTC)
Webmaster


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Posts: 11,133
The Manfrotto Pixi is well worth the money if you want a rock solid mini-tripod for close-up photography (well worth the 3-4 of the cheap ones you get for the same cash)...
You can see it compared to what I have used earlier, the one on the right and its variants just suck in the long run and you get annoyed by them...

You can't adjust the leg height on the Pixi, but just put a Märklin catalog or 2 under it if you need to... BigGrin

MiniPods.jpg
Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
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Offline bph  
#5 Posted : 31 December 2019 10:23:05(UTC)
bph

Norway   
Joined: 04/08/2018(UTC)
Posts: 421
Congratulations with a new camera :)
The results are quite good.
Olympus has always made good cameras. (used to sell them back in the analogue days)
Offline Webmaster  
#6 Posted : 01 January 2020 19:40:09(UTC)
Webmaster


Joined: 25/07/2001(UTC)
Posts: 11,133
Since it's quite fun and also very educational to try to make the best picture you can by trial and error, I made another shot tonight... Smile

Had to do 3 sessions before I got it somewhat right with the focus bracketing settings, I think it came out quite ok.
This time I used 3 USB LED-lamps as lighting and there is still a lot to learn regarding lighting techniques too...

The camera setup - Olympus OM-D M10 MkII + m/43 Olympus 30mm macro lens + mini tripod. And computer screen as background...
Camera settings - ISO 200, focus S-AF+M, focus bracketing settings for this shot - 14 shots, focus delta 5...

39781-3.jpg
Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
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Offline Martin T  
#7 Posted : 01 January 2020 22:14:40(UTC)
Martin T

Sweden   
Joined: 02/01/2006(UTC)
Posts: 864
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Originally Posted by: Webmaster Go to Quoted Post
Since it's quite fun and also very educational to try to make the best picture you can by trial and error, I made another shot tonight... Smile

Had to do 3 sessions before I got it somewhat right with the focus bracketing settings, I think it came out quite ok.
This time I used 3 USB LED-lamps as lighting and there is still a lot to learn regarding lighting techniques too...

The camera setup - Olympus OM-D M10 MkII + m/43 Olympus 30mm macro lens + mini tripod. And computer screen as background...
Camera settings - ISO 200, focus S-AF+M, focus bracketing settings for this shot - 14 shots, focus delta 5...

39781-3.jpg


Hi Juhan,

Very nice photo!
What program do you use for focus stacking?
Regards / Martin T
Click your way over to me in Marbrodal in Sweden: http://www.xn--mrklintg-0zaq.se/index_e.html
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Offline shannon  
#8 Posted : 04 January 2020 13:27:51(UTC)
shannon


Joined: 27/01/2005(UTC)
Posts: 360
Location: Taipei,
Mine is EM10 III, bought in earlier 2019.

IMG_20200102_162001.jpg
OI000113.jpg
OI000006.jpg
OI000008.jpg
IMG_20200104_200557.jpg
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Offline Webmaster  
#9 Posted : 06 January 2020 13:34:47(UTC)
Webmaster


Joined: 25/07/2001(UTC)
Posts: 11,133
A new try today with bracketed focus and stacking.... BigGrin

33916-1.jpg
Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
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Offline Webmaster  
#10 Posted : 06 January 2020 21:16:58(UTC)
Webmaster


Joined: 25/07/2001(UTC)
Posts: 11,133
Originally Posted by: shannon Go to Quoted Post
Mine is EM10 III, bought in earlier 2019.


Well, then you can do the same stuff I am experimenting with, if you have photo software that can stack'em... Smile

The reason I got the 4-5 year old Mk II instead of Mk III was that it was about half the price of a Mk III and had the same amount of megapixels.
Mk III has a faster processor & has better 4k video, but I thought the Mk II was "good enough" for me as an entry point into the m4/3 system family.

The decider was the focus bracketing feature, and after a camera firmware update it got even better... Smile

It came with a 14-42 lens (I see yours has the 14-42 EZ compact one ThumpUp ) and I have bought an Olympus 30mm 3.5 macro, an MMF-3 adapter for my old lenses and a 25mm 1.8 is on the way from Olympus in Germany (half price New Year's campaign)...

Some time in the future I will get a Leica (Panasonic) 100-400mm (means 200-800mm 35mm format) for wildlife shots but that is a serious investment, so I'll work with my old 75-300mm + MMF-3 adapter for now...

Edited by user 07 January 2020 19:08:14(UTC)  | Reason: Corrected 25mm lens f-number

Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
Offline Webmaster  
#11 Posted : 07 January 2020 19:06:36(UTC)
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Joined: 25/07/2001(UTC)
Posts: 11,133
The 25mm f1.8 lens arrived today, and I had to test it quickly... BigGrin

7 stacked freehand shots, since this one has quite a narrow DOF (depth of field).
It was quite dark while shooting too...

Tankard2.jpg


Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
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Offline shannon  
#12 Posted : 08 January 2020 05:03:43(UTC)
shannon


Joined: 27/01/2005(UTC)
Posts: 360
Location: Taipei,
Originally Posted by: Webmaster Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: shannon Go to Quoted Post
Mine is EM10 III, bought in earlier 2019.


Well, then you can do the same stuff I am experimenting with, if you have photo software that can stack'em... Smile

The reason I got the 4-5 year old Mk II instead of Mk III was that it was about half the price of a Mk III and had the same amount of megapixels.
Mk III has a faster processor & has better 4k video, but I thought the Mk II was "good enough" for me as an entry point into the m4/3 system family.

The decider was the focus bracketing feature, and after a camera firmware update it got even better... Smile

It came with a 14-42 lens (I see yours has the 14-42 EZ compact one ThumpUp ) and I have bought an Olympus 30mm 3.5 macro, an MMF-3 adapter for my old lenses and a 25mm 1.8 is on the way from Olympus in Germany (half price New Year's campaign)...

Some time in the future I will get a Leica (Panasonic) 100-400mm (means 200-800mm 35mm format) for wildlife shots but that is a serious investment, so I'll work with my old 75-300mm + MMF-3 adapter for now...


Ok, I will try to experience with it.
I choose Olympic 4/3 mirrorless system as it has the convenience and beautifully classic style but nowadays I worry about the 4/3 system may be replaced by FF if you read some articles regarding the trend of CCD in the future and some rumors about Olympic. Yes, I knew Olympic released some new lens with amazing formal length in 2019.
Panasonic is also developing FF CCD by which some experts assumed it seems to be a indicator that the company may gradually give up 4/3 system.
Where it is true, I should consider if it is worth investing much money to buy extra lens or update high grade 4/3 camera .

EM10 series is absolutely an excellent camera for a beginner to digital single len camera. I also consider mark II is good enough to user. Enjoy your new camera and share with more pictures.ThumpUp

OI000025.jpg
OI000013.jpg

Edited by user 08 January 2020 09:14:25(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

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Offline Webmaster  
#13 Posted : 08 January 2020 20:38:22(UTC)
Webmaster


Joined: 25/07/2001(UTC)
Posts: 11,133
Originally Posted by: shannon Go to Quoted Post
I worry about the 4/3 system may be replaced by FF

The Canonikons seem to be pushing this, but Olympus have been very innovative now and then and have introduced several features that the others copy today.
Olympus does development gradually and of course copy good features too from others - and they are kind of stubborn about "doing their thing" as it suits them...

With FF you will need to carry big lenses, and that's not what I want... We have all seen these sports photographers with huge lenses... Cool LOL


Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
Offline loklund  
#14 Posted : 07 October 2020 09:31:05(UTC)
loklund

Sweden   
Joined: 06/10/2020(UTC)
Posts: 1
Location: Stockholms lan, Stockholm
A wonderful picture - thanks for sharing your camera setup.I got really inspired by this BigGrin it will a challenge for my old rolling material. Nice to see this combo of some of my big interests!

Originally Posted by: Martin T Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Webmaster Go to Quoted Post
Since it's quite fun and also very educational to try to make the best picture you can by trial and error, I made another shot tonight... Smile

Had to do 3 sessions before I got it somewhat right with the focus bracketing settings, I think it came out quite ok.
This time I used 3 USB LED-lamps as lighting and there is still a lot to learn regarding lighting techniques too...

The camera setup - Olympus OM-D M10 MkII + m/43 Olympus 30mm macro lens + mini tripod. And computer screen as background...
Camera settings - ISO 200, focus S-AF+M, focus bracketing settings for this shot - 14 shots, focus delta 5...

39781-3.jpg


Hi Juhan,

Very nice photo!
What program do you use for focus stacking?






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Offline Webmaster  
#15 Posted : 07 October 2020 19:14:33(UTC)
Webmaster


Joined: 25/07/2001(UTC)
Posts: 11,133
Originally Posted by: loklund Go to Quoted Post
A wonderful picture - thanks for sharing your camera setup.I got really inspired by this BigGrin it will a challenge for my old rolling material. Nice to see this combo of some of my big interests!

Happy to inspire, it is fun to try new things in the field of common interests. Smile

Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
Offline PacoM  
#16 Posted : 19 July 2021 13:58:14(UTC)
PacoM

Spain   
Joined: 20/08/2020(UTC)
Posts: 34
Thanks for all this information and those pictures.
I have just bought an Olympus EPL9 at half price (after my older EPL1), considering it features focus bracketing. I already have the adapter for the old lenses I intend using, the 50mm macro or the 35mm, both from the times of my even older Olympus OM1.
Regards

P.S. I wrote too quickly and didn´t realize that focus bracketing is not possible with an adapter but only with the dedicated lens, in this case the standard 14-42mm
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Offline PacoM  
#17 Posted : 19 July 2021 20:50:42(UTC)
PacoM

Spain   
Joined: 20/08/2020(UTC)
Posts: 34
This afternoon I tried stacking with the free programm CombineZP.
I have no train models here, but I have used a box about 20 cm. long deeply inclined and here is the result.
Camera settings: Olympus E-PL9, 14-42mm at 42mm f 5.6, 1/125, ISO 200, mode AP focus bracketing with short focusing differences.
Programm settings: First, "Align and Balance Used Frames (Quick)", then "Pyramoid Maximum Contrast"
CombineZ f5.6 42mm Pyramid.jpg
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Offline PacoM  
#18 Posted : 21 July 2021 17:39:36(UTC)
PacoM

Spain   
Joined: 20/08/2020(UTC)
Posts: 34
And another test
33182 K-Bay Pacific.jpg
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Offline Webmaster  
#19 Posted : 25 August 2021 21:18:52(UTC)
Webmaster


Joined: 25/07/2001(UTC)
Posts: 11,133
Great experimental pics, looks like you've got the hang of it ! ThumpUp

The frustration of taking one shot and still some piece of the subject is blurry is quite annoying even if you have used the maximum of the depth-of-field settings on the lens is well known...
Focus stacking is a great way to make the whole subject look sharp when you want it to be like that. I believe some Märklin catalogue covers/images are also made using this technique...

One small bonus (as in my pics) is that the background will get a blur when stacked, that can be rather pleasant if you wish to highlight the subject...

I was also a bit disappointed that it doesn't work with MMF-3 & the older 4/3 lenses... Sad
Also it doesn't work if you try to do it with the free Olympus tablet/phone software when you wish to have a bigger screen to compose the picture... ThumbDown
Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
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Offline PacoM  
#20 Posted : 04 September 2021 22:27:52(UTC)
PacoM

Spain   
Joined: 20/08/2020(UTC)
Posts: 34
Thanks for your comments. My trials with the EPL9 were successful indeed. Really, I had already done stacking quite a number of years ago, by using a small Canon camera and a hacking programme installed in the memory card that allowed a number of additional features.
In order to blur the background, I did not choose for stacking those pictures of the series where the background was sharper.
I have installed just today in my iPhone the Olympus app and, as far as I have been able to see, its only feature is remote operation of the shutter. I expected something else.
On the contrary, focus brackecting not working with other than dedicated lenses is something expected; automatic focusing is not possible with them
Regards.

Edited by user 05 September 2021 05:59:00(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

Offline Webmaster  
#21 Posted : 15 September 2021 20:42:25(UTC)
Webmaster


Joined: 25/07/2001(UTC)
Posts: 11,133
Yeah, I was also very disappointed that you could not use the focus bracketing with the remote control app (on Android tablet) while doing remote control...

I had expected more control of camera settings with the app... Mellow
Juhan - "Webmaster", at your service...
He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes. He who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. [Old Chinese Proverb]
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