E-M1 Mark III Bird Images

This article shares a selection of recent OM-D E-M1 Mark III bird images. All were captured handheld at Hendrie Valley using the M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II zoom lens.

The M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II is one of those lenses that is easy to underestimate. Many people focus on the fact that it is a ‘non-PRO’, variable aperture lens, that is not weatherproofed. All three specifications are true.

On the flip side of the coin we have a small, lightweight, and affordable lens that will meet the needs of many photographers. Especially those that put a high value on using a small, easy-to-handle birding set-up.

I was already working on this article when I began to receive a flurry of emails asking me what I thought about using my Nikon 1 kit compared to my Olympus gear for birding. I’ve come to learn that this type of email activity happens when discussions are happening somewhere on the internet. Since there appears to be some reader interest I will be writing an article about this topic in the near future.

For folks who prefer using a small, lightweight kit for birding, Nikon 1 gear has always been an attractive option. A Nikon 1 V3 with a 1 Nikkor CX 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 zoom weighs 963 grams (battery included), and provides an efov of 189-810 mm.

By comparison an Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III with the M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II weighs 1003 grams, and provides an efov of 150-600 mm.

Weighing less than either of the two options mentioned is the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III with the M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II. This combination weighs 837 grams, and provides an efov of 150-600 mm. I won’t bother discussing any other Nikon 1/Olympus comparisons in this particular article, but will cover them in a future one.

NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.

OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, f/7.1, 1/640, ISO-500, cropped to 3730 pixels on the width, subject distance 9.7 metres

Unfortunately there weren’t many birds out and about during my visit to Hendrie Valley. So, I just did the best I could with the subject matter available.

OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/2500, ISO-2500, cropped to 4460 pixels on the width, subject distance 16.6 metres

The most plentiful subjects were chickadees, although some other species happened by.

OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/640, ISO-1250, cropped to 4552 pixels on the width, subject distance 2.8 metres
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/640, ISO-640, cropped to 4420 pixels on the width, subject distance 3 metres
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 264 mm, efov 528 mm, f/7.1, 1/640, ISO-500, cropped to 3650 pixels on the width, subject distance 4.6 metres
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/500, ISO-2500, cropped to 4619 pixels on the width, subject distance 3.8 metres
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/400, ISO-2000, cropped to 4476 pixels on the width, subject distance 3 metres
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/400, ISO-2500, cropped to 4601 pixels on the width, subject distance 3 metres
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/6.7, 1/640, ISO-320, cropped to 4619 pixels on the width, subject distance 3.9 metres
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/640, ISO-400, cropped to 3937 pixels on the width, subject distance 3.9 metres
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/640, ISO-320, cropped to 4158 pixels on the width, subject distance 3.6 metres
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/640, ISO-320, cropped to 4619 pixels on the width, subject distance 3.5 metres
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/640, ISO-500, cropped to 3654 pixels on the width, subject distance 6.2 metres

As I expected, the auto-focus on the OM-D E-M1 Mark III was very fast and accurate. Its small form factor and compelling feature set will appeal to many photographers looking for a small, lightweight camera.

OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/320, ISO-2500, subject distance 4.5 metres

Shooting in RAW when using the M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II gives photographers more latitude in post and is recommended. Regular readers know that I’m not a pixel peeper. To help illustrate the advantage of shooting in RAW, a 100% crop of an out-of-camera jpeg is shown below. It is followed by 100% crop of a jpeg made from the corresponding RAW file.

OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/320, ISO-2500, subject distance 4.5 metres, 100% crop of out-of-camera jpeg
OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/320, ISO-2500, subject distance 4.5 metres, 100% crop of jpeg made from RAW file

Doing a little bit of work in post is worth the time and effort as shown by the OM-D E-M1 Mark III bird images in this posting.

OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 240 mm, efov 480 mm, f/7.1, 1/600, ISO-6400, subject distance 2.1 metres

During my visit to Hendrie Valley a chipmunk crossed by path, giving me the opportunity to capture a high ISO image (i.e. ISO-6400).

OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/6.7, 1/1000, ISO-640, subject distance 4.9 metres

On the way home I stopped very briefly at LaSalle Park in Burlington and captured the swan image above.

OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/640, ISO-400, image cropped to 3550 pixels on the width, subject distance 5.7 metres

Overall the OM-D E-M1 Mark III is an enjoyable camera to use for birding. It is small, lightweight and has excellent auto-focusing. Ergonomics and handling are also very good. Folks like me with large hands will likely still prefer using a camera like the OM-D E-M1X, especially with larger and heavier telephoto lenses.

OM-D E-M1 Mark III + M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/640, ISO-400, image cropped to 2600 pixels on the width, subject distance 5.7 metres

As you can see from the tighter 2600 pixel crop above, the image quality when used with the M.Zuiko 75-300 mm f/4.8-6.7 II, will likely meet the needs of many photographers who want to use a small, lightweight telephoto zoom lens.

My M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 has still not arrived, so I remain in a holding pattern as far as that lens is concerned.

Technical Note

Photographs were captured hand-held using camera gear as noted in the EXIF data. Images were produced from RAW files using my standard process which now includes DxO PhotoLab 4 and Topaz Denoise AI. The degree of cropping is indicated for each image.

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2 thoughts on “E-M1 Mark III Bird Images”

  1. I am really happy that I have found your site as it shows what quality can be achieved with small sensor cameras. As a recent follower I have probably missed an article on which programs you use for post processing. Could you either direct me to said article or reply directly via email. Many thanks and keep posting!
    Best wishes.

    1. Hi David,

      I’m glad you are finding the website useful! In terms of post processing articles, there is a heading on the right hand side of the website called ‘Post Processing’. There are currently 55 articles in that heading.

      I use a combination of programs in post. My process starts with DxO PhotoLab 4 in which I apply a custom preset to my RAW files. I am currently using PRIME or DeepPRIME with all of my images. I then export a DNG file into PhotoShop CS6 where I do a number of basic adjustments. Once in CS6 I use some corrections from the Nik Collection. I then finish off my files using Topaz Denoise AI.

      Tom

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