My issue with the E-5 review...

Started Feb 5, 2011 | Discussions thread
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Entropius
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My issue with the E-5 review...
Feb 5, 2011

... isn't the conclusion. All the stuff they said -- that it may well be the end of the mirrored 4/3 system, that it's the best 4/3 camera ever made but that the small sensor does leave it a bit behind in noise levels, blah blah blah -- is all more or less right.

What gets me is the stuff they didn't bother to address, stuff that I care very much about as a potential buyer. (I'll either be switching systems or not in the next few months. If I don't switch I'll get an E-5, after being impressed to hell and back by an ORF that Bruce Spell from this forum sent me.)

Most worryingly, the samples are ... crap. Some of them are completely uninteresting (like the first one -- what's that supposed to show, that the 12-60 is sharp in the corners? We knew that, since DPReview is pretty good at lens reviews, or at least they used to be when they did lens reviews, and they told us that already.)

Some of them are just plain crap, like P1230954, that looks for all the world like my shots do when I forget to turn the IS off when panning. (Oly IS, for what it's worth, is very good at making sharp backgrounds and blurry subjects in pan shots!) Many of them are art filter shots (like that one, with the vignette effect. A samples gallery needs to show what a camera can do when pushed to its limit. I want to see shots of sports in poor light, landscapes with scads of detail, dynamic range, birds in flight, and stuff like that. Show off the camera -- show what it can and cannot do when you push it. A good example of this is PC060338: it shows how the JPEG quality starts to break down as you push the ISO. But all these shots are in jpeg, it seems, and also we don't know what jpeg settings. Would this shot have looked better with NR set to "Off" like on some models? Who knows -- we just have to guess based on a little blue picture of the Queen earlier in the review.

On the shots they developed in Viewer, there isn't even any displayed EXIF!

They didn't address how good the autofocus is, beyond a few sentences. I want to know how accurate it is in good light and bad light, in spot mode and in area mode, in S-AF and in C-AF, whether or not it is easily distracted by "clutter" like Canons are, how prone it is to hunting with fast lenses and with slow ones, etc. All these things are important. Is it the same as the E-3? I dunno. They seem to think it is. Richard Pavek thinks it's not. TBH I trust Mr. Pavek more -- DPReview can apparently take pictures of airplanes in a museum, and Mr. Pavek takes pictures of birds in flight. Think he knows a little about what he's talking about.

They didn't address how good the IS is. IS is a huge, huge deal, and probably has made a bigger difference in the quality of people's pictures than any other advance since autofocus. Is it the same IS as the E-3? What about the E-30? (Frankly, the only thing scaring me away from Nikons is that the lens I want, the 300/4, doesn't have IS.) I dunno, but even just saying "Yup, seems to be the same Oly IBIS we wrote about before, go read an old review back when we did real reviews to see if it's good or not" would be fine.

What about the shutter noise? For a certain segment of photographers this is a HUGE deal.

Basically -- I have no gripe about any particular conclusions in their reviews. My gripe is that they didn't do a real review of any part of the camera other than the sensor.

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