Unfocused . . .

As I was exulting over the results of my SL2-S/Sigma zoom test the other day, I reminded myself a couple of times, “Critters don’t sit still, and they don’t usually sit out in the open.” Still, it was a very positive step. Getting so many good critter shots later in the day made it easy to forget the misses.

One thing I noticed for certain the other day is that the SL2-S’s Single Point AF is most definitely NOT a single crosshair. The “single point” covers a larger area.

Today’s outing, in bright sunlight (until the downpour came) saw the setup balk time and time again when trying to focus on a critter among foliage. I could ballpark it by focusing on something nearby, and it STILL wouldn’t focus on the critter. Behind, beside, in front of, ANYTHING but the critter.

Focus-by-wire was miserable. It’s not manual focus at all, as every time I’d get tired of trying to fine focus and lower the camera for a moment, it would default back to one end of the rack or the other.

It cost me what could have been great shots of a Crimson Sunbird, Olive-Backed Sunbird, Black-Naped Oriole, and a Common Tailorbird. When I finally found a perched kingfisher in the open and clicked while it was sitting still, below was what I got. Miserable shutter lag.

Many times today I wished I’d brought the CL, 180mm, and 2X. Manual focus would have certainly gotten good shots of all but the Crimson Sunbird, and probably would have gotten at least one or two of him. At one point I was so livid that I felt like spiking the lens, but I realized that it’ll fetch me at least half of what I paid for it last month when I go to sell it off.

As for the SL2-S, well, it probably won’t last much longer. I’d hoped to be able to do everything with Leica and the one Sigma lens. Now I’ll settle for most things. The CL setup works in moderate to good light, but I get stale if I shoot the same setup every day. A <700g high-megapixel full frame would be great, but where to find a lens with good optics at a reasonable weight with analog manual focus?

On the bright side, at least I have something good to work with until I find the next addition . . .

Miserable gear