Sometimes when we’re in the Charleston area we stay at a hotel on Folly Beach (about 9 miles to the southeast of the city). This gets you away from the crowds in Charleston and also provides an opportunity to take long walks on the beach, especially early in the morning. While I prefer the desert these days, I still love the serenity of the ocean. Although on this particular morning it wasn’t all that serene. Even the seagulls were “grounded”. Lots of rain and lots of wind.
So I amused myself by taking pictures from our 6th floor balcony. I figured it was a good chance to use my long micro 4/3 lens (under somewhat adverse conditions) and see how it performed. All in all I’d say not so good. This image was taken at about 500mm and at an f/stop of about 6.2. To get a reasonably short exposure, I had to set the ISO at 1600 (yielding a 1/300 sec. exposure). The original image is reasonably sharp, but there’s a hell of a lot of noise. Given my experience with other lenses – like the 75mm f/1.8 lens – I figure this lens must be part of the problem. With the 75mm I can shoot at ISO 1600 and not see much noise. It’s easily corrected with a small luminance adjustment. Not so with this Olympus 70 – 300mm lens. It seems more prone to higher noise even when the tones aren’t this dark. But who knows. I’m certainly no expert on lens construction.
So I turned this into B & W and left some of the noise. And made the guy with the umbrella a silhouette. It kind of works………
The good news is that it cleared up the same afternoon. So the 70 – 300 went back in its pouch and we went back into Charleston. Where I switched to the 75mm lens.