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Technical focusing questions

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  • Technical focusing questions

    Mine is on its way! Sold my trusty, faithful E-5 to part fund it. I am really looking forward to getting to grips with it.

    I have questions about the AF that I can't find an answer to online. I know someone here will have the answers.

    The E-M1ii uses what the marketing information calls a hybrid focusing system, both contrast and phase detect. I understand the difference between the two focusing systems. I've been trying to find information about what 'hybrid' means technically, as opposed to having both PD and CD, such as on my old E-5.

    1. I have read in a review of the mark ii that "E-M1 mark i Phase-Detect AF was limited to adapted legacy Four-Thirds lenses." I think this infers that the mark ii can use PD on MFT lenses, is that correct?

    2 a. Can you switch between the two focusing systems, AD and PD?
    2 b. Does the camera always use a combination of PD and CD at the same time all of the time?
    2 c. Does the camera choose the focusing system depending upon which lens is fitted? (e.g. does the hybrid system only works with with, say, the pro lenses.)

    3 a. I know that my FT SWD lens will focus much faster on the E-M1ii than it does on my E-M5ii. Will there be any difference in focusing speed on the E-M1ii compared to my old E-5?
    3 b. Will there be a difference in speed with my mft lenses between this and my e-m5ii?

    I know I can experiment with the camera when it arrives to discover the answers for myself, and I am sure some of the answers will be in the manual, but I like to think about it before hand! (I'm impatient! )

    Thanks all!


    Olympus E-M5ii, E-5

  • #2
    Re: Technical focusing questions

    G'day Ivor.
    Which one does it use? That is the question, but in reality it uses both for M4/3's lenses but (I think) only PD-AF for the 4/3's lenses, which is particularly necessary for the SWD lenses. It should be as responsive as the E-5 for them but the Pro M4/3's lenses are faster. Unfortunately it isn't possible to actually select either PD-AF or CD-AF, something I wish I had the option for when using the E-M1 (Mk I) as it became frustrating when using the 14-54II lens on it which would just hunt in low light etc (but that only had horizontal PD-AF sensors though), whereas it could perform more reliably using CD-AF on the E-M5. It can still hunt in low light, low contrasting detail on the E-M1 Mk II (I had to dig it out when the 12-60 SWD lens stopped working). I now mostly use the 12-40 & 40-150 (+MC14) Pro lenses instead.

    The important thing is to use the small AF target (in FW 2.0 update, but now up to 2.1) in situations of small object in busy backgrounds or it will focus on the background instead. This is where it is unclear when CD-AF or PD-AF is functioning, but somehow they're both functioning. BTW, I changed the function of the dials to move the AF target around instead of changing the number & size of targets, but I also set my cameras up with the 4 way pad being Direct Function as well.

    Hope that helps.

    I fiddle with violins (when I'm not fiddling with a camera).
    Cameras: OM-D E-M1 & Mk II, Olympus Stylus 1, OM-D E-M5.
    Lenses: M.ZD12-40mm f2.8 PRO Lens, M.ZD40-150mm f2.8 PRO Lens with MC-14, M.ZD12-50, M.ZD60 Macro, M.ZD75-300 Mk II, MMF-3, ZD14-54 II, Sigma 150mm F2.8 APO Macro DG HSM.
    Flashes: FL36R X2, FL50R, FL50.
    Software: Capture One Pro 10 (& Olympus Viewer 3).


    • #3
      Re: Technical focusing questions

      Thank-you Ross for a full and informative answer. I knew this would be the place to ask!


      Olympus E-M5ii, E-5