Choosing between the XZ-1 and the E-PL2

Started Jan 28, 2011 | Discussions thread
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assaft
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Choosing between the XZ-1 and the E-PL2
Jan 28, 2011

Hi Oly experts,

I have a dilemma in choosing between the XZ-1 and the E-PL2. I wrote down a comparison that I've made with respect to different aspects, mostly related to image and lens quality. I will very appreciate any opinion about my findings.

Details and colors: Thanks to its bigger sensor, the E-PL2 clearly outperforms any premium compact.

Depth-of-field: DPR says that due to its bright lens, the XZ-1 reach the same control over DOF as the kit lens of m34s. I did not run the formula by myself, but I assume that there is no winner in this respect.

Lens Sharpness: From what I've learned by reading the DP reviews, both the XZ-1's lens and the E-PL2's kit lens provide satisfying sharpness at the center of the image, but suffer from some softness at the corners. The softness appears mainly in wide aperture. In my understanding, the quality of E-PL2's kit lens is not significantly better than the quality of the XZ-1's lens.

Noise in low-light conditions: In my opinion, the highest XZ-1's output that preserves low noise while not sacrificing too much in details and color is ISO 400. For the E-PL2 it is ISO 800. With respect to noise, the XZ-1 seems to be slightly better here since its lens has 2 stops advantage over the E-PL2's kit lens (1.8 vs. 3.5). So the E-PL2 has to reach ISO 1600 in order to capture the same amount of light that the XZ-1 captures at ISO 400. I'm very well aware of the fact that the E-PL2 preserves more details in all ISO settings, but since I will not exceed ISO 800, it will capture less light than the XZ-1 captures at ISO 400.

So the E-PL2 produces images with better details and colors, and it is probably more professional and flexible also in other respects (e.g. interchangeable lens), but it is much less compact than the XZ-1, which also has a slightly better performance in low light thanks to its brighter lens.

I will be grateful for any comments.

Thank you.

Assaf

 assaft's gear list:assaft's gear list
Olympus PEN E-PL2 Olympus OM-D E-M10 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 9-18mm 1:4.0-5.6 Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH Panasonic Lumix G 14mm F2.5 ASPH +5 more
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