Sunday, July 31, 2016

They Shoot Planes With PANASONIC LEICA 100-400 Don't They?

"Bird" hunting while driving up Mt Victoria, in Wellington with the Panasonic Leica 100-400 super zoom.


It was a clear winter afternoon, the gusty wind packed an insane chill factor, cannot see any birds at all! Not even the long legged humanoid kind!

Half way up the mountain I noticed some IRON BIRDS negotiating the Wellington blow to land on this windy Capital.

I parked the car and became a plane spotter!

The chunky Leica zoom is quite heavy mounted on the just as chunky Lumix GX8, the total weight was quite a handful standing in the very strong southerlies.

I could have use my monopod but I want to find out what it is like hand holding this set up.

Surprisingly, the big 100-400 balance really well on the Lumix GX8.  The GX8, I think is the ideal camera body for this lens. A smaller body like the GX85 will not balance as well.


The focussing mode on my GX8 for this series of shots, was set on "ONE AREA", my AF target was in the centre and I was trying to follow the plane, firing the noiseless electronic shutter in medium burst.


On hind sight, may be I should have used the mechanical shutter instead, I notice some of the buildings in a few shots were elongated due to the "jello effect".

One of my Malaysian photographer friend seems to think that the Air New Zealand shot appeared to suffer from "back focus", I went and enlarged this shot and it look fine :)




During my 15 minutes fighting the gust with the insane chill factor, I was happy to capture a Jet Star flight passing over our Wellington "Blown Away" signboard!



“Wellington - blown away” is a concept put together by a group of creatives from advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi NZ.

I reckon this is far more creative than just "HOLLYWOOD"!


This shot of our favourite groceries shopping mall, the bright yellow PAK N SAVE in Kilbernie was taken at the same spot. At 800mm Eq, this monster zoom is powerful!!

On our way down from Mt Vic, we drove to the Oriental Bay waterfront where my standard "Lens Test Vista" is and took two shots, first at 100mm (200mm Eq) and 400mm (800mm Eq) to give you some idea what the top and bottom zoom ratio delivers.




The top picture was shot at 100mm handheld and the bottom two was at 400mm, also handheld.

Famous Last Words...

Again, this Leica branded super zoom delivers!

I find the sharpness of this lens amazing from 100mm to 300mm, there is slight softness at 300-400mm but some sharpening in Photoshop take care of that.

Auto focus speed overall is very snappy and quick, I have not test the AF tracking. Will be doing that next.

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