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OM-1 Bird AI consensus...?

Bobby V wrote:
I agree with your findings Paul.

My experience thus far are that the Subject Detection w/ bird AI, while not flawless, is more of the primary go-to mode for me now more than it ever was on the E-M1X. As you say, it is also pretty plug and play out of the box.

While it is not my goal to impress an expensive purchase upon anyone, (e.g., I didn't think the E-M1X or E-M1 III were quantum leaps over the E-M1 II in any one area to the point where they rendered the II obsolete), it is starting to feel like the OM-1 is a choice tool for bird work if its within budget.

The things that probably impress me about the bird AF the most are 1) how small or obscured the bird can be in frame and still be picked up by the AF, 2) how well the AF works well across different species, 3) the AF's ability to hold onto the bird, especially when it is moving rapidly through the frame with contrasting backgrounds. These things are kind of the holy grail for bird AF in my eyes, and are helpful when I'm striving for more than just white or blue sky backgrounds and not just taking ventral shots of birds.

The OM-1's advantages over the 1X became particularly clear to me while I was capturing swallows the other day. I noticed a few diving to grab some gull feathers in the water, and my angle wasn't great, basically the birds close to the water and shooting down at an angle. The ability to get any shots like that is confidence inspiring and I have to give credit to the camera. This is not to say I don't miss focus or can throw all technique out the window, but I'm attempting a lot more types of photos than I would have second guessed trying on the 1X. For me Bird AI for BIF on the 1X was delegated to slow moving/soaring species

Really the only hardware things I can think of to improve at this point, which are probably not specific to bird work, would be a 1X type body and a deeper buffer. For software I only wish they'd add some shot indicators in software like all the other stacked sensor cameras have while in SH2 mode.

The important thing for me is I'm getting what I need way more often than not.
Not super high keeper rates but I consider I am usually using the 1.25X most often and I am not always in good light or at a decent close-up distance...usually something in a burst turns out that I can use.
A nice change over the EM1X for shorebirds moving/darting around very quickly and ducks swimming at speed on the surface of the water...I never relied on Bird Ai with EM1X....just couldn't. More times than not the AF would lock on a ripple/wave instead of the duck.
although the walking/wading shorebirds do not appear to moving quickly...apparently, most of the time they are...either the front half of the body/heady is moving or the rear is catching up to the front. instead of using single AF/CAF and manually tracking the head/eye now I often just let Bird Ai do the work.
With the OM-1 I can comfortably and confidently rely on Bird Ai for these situations.
About the only thing I do not use Bird AI for is the small songbirds (perched and/or darting around in the bushes), for these I still use single AF and C-AF.

May 03, 2022 at 09:46 AM

  Previous versions of Paul_100A's message #15933410 « OM-1 Bird AI consensus...? »