12 questions on the Olympus OM-D/ Lumix GH3 - before I take the 4/3 plunge

Started Feb 23, 2013 | Questions thread
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ken henke
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12 questions on the Olympus OM-D/ Lumix GH3 - before I take the 4/3 plunge
Feb 23, 2013

As I seriously take a look at a 4/3 system, I wanted to ask some pertinent questions that I believe this forum will be able to answer. I wish the GH3 was in the hands of more folks so these questions could be answered, since I am leaning toward that camera.

For some background, my digital photography has lead me down a path of taking a variety of subjects. I am primarily a nature photographer, thus, landscape and macro close-up images are most photographed. Can be anytime during the year, so cold weather performance is somewhat important. I also have started taking night images as well, primarily Milky Way images. With my son grown up, child/family photos are not important as they once were. Video capability is also not as important as it once was, but having a camera such as the gh3 would be added advantage for sure. Currently, with the variety of photography I'm interested in, I have a Nikon D7000 system with all the associated lenses, flashes, remote cords, etc.

With the new 7100, I'm at a crossroads now of deciding whether to stay the course with Nikon or move to a new system. My most important reason for wanting to change are weight and cost. I certainly noticed last summer trying to carry that 17 extra lbs of camera gear backpacking is not enjoyable! From the research conducted so far, I am encouraged to know there are great 4/3 lenses available at reasonable prices, not to mention a significant reduction in weight. I am also very concerned about the cost of high end Nikon/Canon cameras. I believe they are inflated, particularly in an age with electronics are mass produced. And although higher resolution of full frame cameras can be appealing, a 36mb raw image is overkill in most situations. 16mb is sufficient for the 16x24 images I print.

On to the questions:

1. Are they significant issues with sensor dust on the Oly and GH3?

2. If so, can one clean those sensors themselves?

3. For macro images, my technique is primarily focus stacking. Thus, I either use a focus rail or better yet, use very small incremental manual focus movements of the lens. Can anyone comment on their experience with focus stacking using one of the oly/gh3 macro lenses? The ability of a macro lens to have a lot of manual movement is typically called "lens throw." The more, the better. I have to say, I have seen some of the macro images taken by these cameras/lens handheld and was quite impressed. However, I never handhold my macro images so I'm encouraged that the quality will be outstanding with a tripod.

4. For those who use Aperture for RAW processing, any advantage to either the oly or gh3?

5. I am still confused over the Oly lenses(Zuiko). Do they need an adaptor to fit onto the OM-D?

6. I really like the idea of the articulating screen on the gh3, particularly as it relates to macro photography. However, for those with the oly, is their tilt screen sufficient or do you wish it had the same movement capability as the gh3?

7. Anyone can relate experience with the gh3 wifi and a Mac?

8. Probably to early to tell on the gh3, but any bugs or issues folks can related on either model (i.e. back focusing, build quality, battery life, etc.)

9. I am assuming on all Zuiko and Lumix lens, one can utilize a manual focusing mode?

10. What are the experiences folks have on moving focus point via the rear screen? I believe both cameras have that ability? I would find that quite a nice advantage over DLSRs. Oftentimes, I have to use focus stacking to get DOF in a landscape scene.

11. For landscape images, I am often confronted with high dynamic range scenes. Thus, HDR software or exposure blending is often used. I noticed both cameras have a nice range of multiple auto bracketing exposures available. In fact, more exposure range than my Nikon. Any experiences with auto bracketing you can relate?

12. With the HDR setting in the gh3, is that achieving decent results? I have seen very few examples.

Considering the questions and my general explanation on my photography, if anyone wants to chime in on either camera (plus or minus), it would be appreciated. I would particularly like to hear from folks who moved from a DLSR to a 4/3 system.

Like others I suppose, I am struggling on which camera to go with. With some financial issues Olympus reported last year, that makes me somewhat nervous. I certainly like having more external buttons on the gh3. It would make the transition to 4/3 much easier. And although I don't have monstrous hands, I believe the GH3 would fit better? Wish I could try them out, but there are NO camera stores in Colorado where I live that have them. Another transition I would have to get used to is the 4:3 aspect ratio. I have become quite used to printing 16x24 (3:2). Yea, no doubt I can crop, but that will be an adjustment.

I certainly have enjoyed reading this forum since it is the best source of 4/3 info on the net! So, any words of wisdom will be appreciated.

Ken

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Nikon D7000 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3
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